#1
after reading loads of articles here and in loads of magazines and interviews i was under the impression that thicker strings more or less equates to thicker tone (all things being equal)

however i read here http://www.guitarworld.com/article/dear_guitar_hero_billy_f_gibbons that billy gibbons of zztop has been using 008's for a while now. surely he has one of the meatiest tones around? for my money he does anyway.

hows that work then?

i might have pop to my local guitar shop and grab a pack of 008's or 009's to put on my squire strat to a>b test against my kramer superstrat... hmmmm
#2
"Better" tone depends on the person. It's really player preference. Different people like different tones. Some tone's are obviously pretty gross, but string gauge doesn't automatically make your tone "better" for you.
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#4
Quote by Revalk
"Better" tone depends on the person. It's really player preference. Different people like different tones. Some tone's are obviously pretty gross, but string gauge doesn't automatically make your tone "better" for you.


i didnt mean to say better in the thread title sorry, i meant to put thicker meaning warmer or darker or suchlike...


Quote by forsaknazrael
It's all preference. I like 10's for their strength as opposed to 9's. Do they sound different...Hmm...I don't know.
Now 11's, those sounded quite a bit thicker.


i thought so too when i went from the 009's that came with my epi lp to the 011's that i use now but maybe i just thought it sounded better as i had conditioned myself with all the information i had previously read and ingested...
#5
In my experience, thicker strings just makes everything louder, not necessarily different. You're not going to dramatically change the tonal characteristics of your guitar by going to a thicker gauge, but you might liven it up if you think it sounds a bit thin.
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#6
Quote by deadlydunc
a
however i read here http://www.guitarworld.com/article/dear_guitar_hero_billy_f_gibbons that billy gibbons of zztop has been using 008's for a while now. surely he has one of the meatiest tones around? for my money he does anyway.


He also probably has a great tube amp, great pedals, a great guitar tech, and a great producer with a state of the art recording studio. When you have a that you can make thin strings sound a lot thicker.
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#8
Quote by Dirk Gently
In my experience, thicker strings just makes everything louder, not necessarily different. You're not going to dramatically change the tonal characteristics of your guitar by going to a thicker gauge, but you might liven it up if you think it sounds a bit thin.


ff topic... ahhhh a fellow gently fan are you svlad? do you know when the long dark teatime of the soul is?
#9
Quote by Dardarian
He also probably has a great tube amp, great pedals, a great guitar tech, and a great producer with a state of the art recording studio. When you have a that you can make thin strings sound a lot thicker.



true true... the bixonic distortion pedal is sick and he uses multiple ones in a row apparently...
#10
Quote by deadlydunc
i didnt mean to say better in the thread title sorry, i meant to put thicker meaning warmer or darker or suchlike...
Gotcha. Personally, I find the thicker gauge just makes them... "plunk"? a little more. Didn't necessarily sound warmer or darker. You get that from your pickup/tone knob setting on your guitar, and your amp and it's tone settings, I think.
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#13
Quote by Acid_(b)Rain
Well - i play 12's but halfstep down and it sounds much better - for me!


i tried 012's at normal pitch and i couldnt bend the g string a full tone. it was just too heavy for me. maybe in a lower tuning though... hmmmm
#14
Quote by Dirk Gently
In my experience, thicker strings just makes everything louder, not necessarily different. You're not going to dramatically change the tonal characteristics of your guitar by going to a thicker gauge, but you might liven it up if you think it sounds a bit thin.


agreed.

also, there's no point in moving up to, say, 0.050's, as you couldn't play them. so if you can barely bend your strings as it is, not much point in moving up to thicker strings.

Also, I read in another article that if the guitar is good, it should sound good even with lower-gauge strings. I'm not sure if that's true or not, but it does sound plausible. The argument was that if your guitar sounds pretty poor unplugged, that thicker strings may help.

No idea.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
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#15
Quote by Dave_Mc
there's no point in moving up to, say, 0.050's, as you couldn't play them. so if you can barely bend your strings as it is, not much point in moving up to thicker strings.


its not that i cant bend now. i have 011's on and i can get a full tone and a half most of the time. it was more that it would be easier on lower gauge strings and if there is no tonal loss to speak of there is no reason to stick on the heavier ones... i guess ill have to test them on one of the other electrics i have knocking about to see how they compare.

or like i tell everyone on here. try it out and see for yourself... lol. cheers
#16
yeah, you basically have to try it. I have 10's (i think) on my new edwards, and while i can bend and vibrato fine (easier than I thought I could), every so often there's a note i have bother with, which i wouldn't have with 9's, it's just not so effortless... so yeah. it's really up to you. conversely, some players used to heavier strings hate lighter ones...

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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#17
Heavier strings sound better IMO, less ratty and with a bit more thickness and depth, also maybe a bit more output and sustain. I prefer their tone, but I really dig the pure ease of playing on 9s - as well as being easier to bend, they also need less effort to play. I have a feeling Malmsteen wouldn't be so great on 12s at all...
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#18
^ meh, heavier strings give you more control IMO. look at all the jazz greats, most of them can play faster and IMO better than yngwie, and all those dudes are members of the 12+ club. and all this on baseball bat neck semi-hollows.
#19
eh, it wouldn't affect his speed at all. if anything it's easier to play fast on thicker strings. it's bending and vibrato, if you ask me, which is harder on thicker strings. plus doesn't he just use an 8 on the highest string? and then gets much thicker on the lower strings? i think he says it doesn't affect the tone on the high e anyway, so he goes with a lighter string... makes sense to me anyway, but then i'm an yngwie fanboy. EDIT: plus with all the energy he gets from all those donuts he could probably bend on 12's anyway.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#20
^^ Control? IMO it just means you can afford to have a heavier touch without de-intonating the note. With 9s I've got this real light touch thing going on and I can play fast easily.

Swings and Roundabouts, I guess.

^

I dunno, I just find it easier to play fast on thin strings. I do have tiny hands for my age though
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#21
Quote by MrCarrot
^^ Control? IMO it just means you can afford to have a heavier touch without de-intonating the note. With 9s I've got this real light touch thing going on and I can play fast easily.

Swings and Roundabouts, I guess.

^

I dunno, I just find it easier to play fast on thin strings. I do have tiny hands for my age though


for control, i can feel every string under my finger better the bigger the gauge. makes it easier for me to play faster and more accurately. i can bend very well with a high gauge. could just be my big gorilla hands though.
#22
Quote by TehJermie
for control, i can feel every string under my finger better the bigger the gauge. makes it easier for me to play faster and more accurately. i can bend very well with a high gauge. could just be my big gorilla hands though.

That may well be it. I've heard adult guitarists play like absolute guff on my guitar - but on a lot of others I sound crap. Like I said, I have midgety puny fingers so I can't do much more than use a slim neck and thin strings.
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#23
yeah, i mean i can play fast on thin strings too, i'm used to it. just depends what you like, to be honest. the argument "X guitarist wouldn't be as good if he played a different guitar with a different gauge of strings" could most likely be used, more or less, for any guitarist... i mean everyone has their favourites...

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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#25
I went from 9's to 8's about fifteen years ago. I love it, but I do some tremendous bends. I don't notice it except on super-clean amp settings. It sounds a little thinner than 11's, but I compensate with EQ.
#27


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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#28
I find it harder to play fast on thicker strings because it has more tension and fretting/picking is a little more difficult. The same reason why acoustic is harder to play than electric.
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#29
The only difference I've really noticed is that heavier strings seem to be able to handle distortion a bit better, and have a little bit beefier/bassier of a tone, but it's not anything extremely noticeable. I love using 11s, but I can play a little bit better on 10s so stick with those. Also, once I found out how to EQ my amps and pedals better and use my tone knobs, so I stuck with the 10s for playability.