#1
Hi everybody,

When I buy new strings for my classical guitar ofcourse I have the choise between a lot of different brands and gauges, but even when I narrow that down I still have the choise between 'normal tension' , 'high tension' and 'super high tension'. What exactly is the difference? I know I can just buy a set of strings of the same brand and gauge in each diffrent tension and try them all out but it would be a lot easier if some could list the pro's and con's of having a low or a high tension. Thanks in advance!
#2
I've never heard of that, does it say normal, high and super high right on the box of strings? I have a classical guitar, but I've never heard of these different tensions. Is this the same thing as "light", "medium", and "heavy" kind of thing?

If so, the lighter the guage, the easier it is to bend and play, though some would argue they don't have a very nice tone. The higher the gauge the harder it is to bend, but some would say it has better tone. Hope that helped a little
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour
#3
Yeah it said so on the box. It even says so on their website: http://www.daddario.com/DADProducts.aspx?ID=4&CLASS=ADSA
Since "tension" is something diffrent then "gauge" (tension is basicly with how much force it pulls, and gauge is basicly how thick something is. Not the best explanation but you get my point) so it wouldn't seem logical to me if they refer to the same thing.

E:they are also listed as two different things on this list : http://www.daddario.com/DADFamilyGauges.aspx?ID=ADSA but they do seem to be related.
Last edited by Dardarian at May 22, 2006,
#4
Sorry I couldn't help you then

My guess would be that the "tension" measurements are the force that needs to be put on the string (neutons?) that makes it the correct pitch. Thats wierd, I'll be interested in hearing from someone who knows as well.
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour
#5
Quote by Dardarian
Hi everybody,

When I buy new strings for my classical guitar ofcourse I have the choise between a lot of different brands and gauges, but even when I narrow that down I still have the choise between 'normal tension' , 'high tension' and 'super high tension'. What exactly is the difference? I know I can just buy a set of strings of the same brand and gauge in each diffrent tension and try them all out but it would be a lot easier if some could list the pro's and con's of having a low or a high tension. Thanks in advance!



For all practical intents and purposes, using higher tension classical strings is just like using heavier gauge electric strings. Higher tension strings are a bit tougher to fret, but they don't flap around as much and give a crisper, cleaner attack with more solid intonation.
#6
Essentially, it refers to the same thing. The thicker the strings are, the higher the tension it has to be tuned to in order to get the same pitch. Common sense.

String tension work similar to different guages. Higher tension refers to heavier guage. The use depends on the guitar itself and your personal preference as well. However, I would start off with normal tension.

If you still feel that you can handle higher tension, then get high tension. If you can't, then stick with it, or maybe even use light tension. It has to be noted that in a well set-up classical guitar, heavy guage should not feel uncomfortable, but rather, have a firmer and steady feel.

From what I see, you're not an intermediate-advanced classical guitarist at the moment. The difference wouldn't be noticeable whether you used D'Addario or Savarez. I suggest the cheaply priced D'Addario sets until you feel that you've played enough to judge the barely noticeable difference in tone. Saves your cash as well.
#7
Higher tension have a more classical tone but are prone to snapping more regularly and are tougher to play than light.

Light Tension are more used for flamenco styles..more flappy and easier to play but a lesser tone..

I normally go for the Medium!
#8
Thanks for all the explanations so far! I still have a question though: If higher tension strings also have a heavier gauge, how come the intonation of the guitar doesn't change? Because this does happen when you use a heavier gauge (and thus a heavyer tension) of strings on electric guitar.
#9
Because compared to say a floyd rose electric tremelo (which moves according to pull of strings) a classical bridge doesnt move.