Best Acoustic Guitar Strings 2020: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

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1. Elixir2. Ernie Ball3. D’Addario
Elixir Best Acoustic Guitar StringsEarnie Ball 2146D’Addario EJ16-3D

What comes to your mind when you hear the word Guitar? Is it music, sound, or songs? No, nothing’s wrong with that, but being a true guitarist, you would surely know the importance of having good-quality strings to fulfill your need of a perfect play and to provide you with a breathtaking experience.

These days, buying the best acoustic guitar strings is more like thinking out of the box. While taking care of the instrument, it is equally crucial to fix any issues that might occur due to the strings that the guitar uses. The instrument is absolutely worthless without this indispensable constituent.

So if you are looking for the best acoustic guitar strings, you surely are at the right place. But before getting into the hunt for the best available guitar strings, you must know more about them so that you’re able to buy the most suitable and desirable option.

All of you guitar junkies might already know that one of the most essential parts of this accessory. The ones you choose heavily influence the sound that you and your guitar represent.

Apart from the skill of the player, strings are a major factor that determines how soothing a guitar would sound to the listener. Different types of strings give out various sounds and, in turn, leave a distinct impression on the listener. Hence different people can think different strings are the best sounding acoustic guitar strings.

Fingerpicking and strumming have unique types of strings for special emphasis on the particular style of play. Most players don’t usually give strings the importance they deserve, but professionals know how critical it is to have the perfect design for the perfect sound.

Strings are usually made out of a copper alloy. This is because copper ensures the appropriate tone that’s necessary for an acoustic guitar. Nylon alloy strings are the best acoustic-electric guitar strings, but they are not well-suited for acoustic guitars.

Types Of Guitar Strings

The major types include:

1. 80/20 Bronze

These strings are made from 20% zinc and 80% copper. These are the best fit for a jumbo guitar owing to the high-frequency sound and the low-end shape of the guitar.

2. Silk And Steel

These strings have a steel core along with a silk, nylon, or copper wire wrapped around them, which makes them perfect for fingerpicking.

3. Phosphorous Bronze

These strings are made from about 92% copper and 8% zinc with a little phosphorous. These are quite resistant to corrosion by oil and are warm sounding.

The truth is that not every player is a professional. So the question arises, “What kind of string gauge should beginners use for smooth learning and the best results and what are the best acoustic guitar strings for beginners?â€

Well, the answer to this question is straightforward. Beginners should avoid heavy strings and stick to the lighter options to easily understand the instrument. This is because heavy strings, even though they produce a better sound, can be harder to play and get accustomed to.

So beginners should start with the lightest and move on to the heavier as they learn and master their craft. Common string gauges include.

  • Extra light (0.10, 0.14, 0.23, 0.30, 0.39, 0.47)
  • Custom light (0.11, 0.15, 0.23, 0.32, 0.42, 0.52)
  • Light (0.12, 0.16, 0.25, 0.32, 0.42, 0.54)
  • Medium ( 0.13, 0.17, 0.26, 0.35, 0.45, 0.56)
  • Heavy (0.14, 0.18, 0.27, 0.39, 0.49, 0.59)

Some Of The Best Guitar Strings Brands

Before moving on to the best guitar string brands, the first question that comes to mind is – “what are the best acoustic guitar strings?â€

The answer varies from person to person. It is not necessary that if someone likes one particular type, another would prefer that one too.

Different people have varied preferences and unique criteria for deciding the best strings for themselves. For example, some people may want strings that are more comfortable to play, while others might be more inclined towards strings that may be a little harsh but provide a better sound effect with depth and volume. On the contrary, some might desire long-lasting wires due to their regular use.

So no one can decide the most suitable from the whole lot as the supposed ‘best’ set of strings may not necessarily fulfill your expectations. So it is obviously you who has to pick out the most desirable option!

With the increasing competition between companies and numerous options available to buyers, the demand to buy the best is rapidly growing. People expect unbeatable purchases and optimum use of their money and are constantly on the look-out for an unparalleled buy.

To make this tiring work less worrisome, following are some of the best acoustic guitar string brands that surely won’t disappoint you in any way:

1. Elixir Strings

Elixir strings manufacture strings for both electric and acoustic guitars as well as banjos. They are famous for their fluoropolymer coating, which makes them long lasting by blocking corrosion from skin oil.

These strings are being used by many famous artists, like Eric Bibb, Kermheat, Gus G, Wayne Surmon, etc. They have a varied inventory that includes bass strings as well as the former ones.

2. D’Addario

D’Addario is a manufacturer of musical instrument strings and other accessories. The D’Addario legacy goes as far back as 1680, and to this day, the company is still owned and operated by its 13-strong D’Addario family members.

Originally, the business was located in the Lynbrook region of New York but in 1994 moved to Farmingdale, New York. They manufacture strings for various instruments, such as a guitar and bass, mandolin, banjo, ukulele, fiddle, baritone etc.

3. Earnie Ball

Earnie ball guitar strings were conceived by an American-born entrepreneur and musician – Earnie ball. Today, the guitar accessories giant makes over 40 million USD in revenue a year.

In 1950, Ball started the first music store in the United States in California. People from all over the country began visiting the store, and soon his products were being exported to more than 70 countries across the world in over 5000 stores. The brand doesn’t just sell strings, but all types of guitar-related accessories (like amplifiers) can be found here.

4. CF Martin And Company

CF Martin and company is an American guitar manufacturing company famous for their steel string acoustic guitars. They are one of the leading manufacturers of flat top guitars and, at one point, made ukuleles, mandolins, and various electric guitars that aren’t in production anymore. The company’s headquarters are located in Pennsylvania, with another based in Mexico which produces more than 270 guitars per day.

Factors To Look For While Buying The Best Acoustic Guitar Strings

1. Guitar Type

Make sure that you take a complete look at your guitar before making any decision. This might seem transparent, but the use of inappropriate strings that aren’t compatible with your guitar might damage the instrument. You cannot use a single type of string in every guitar known to you.

Different guitars require different kinds of strings for a performance that gathers the attention of your audience and brings you the satisfaction you’re searching for while you play your instrument. So to avoid any incompatibility, be sure about the type of guitar you own.

2. Preferred Gauge

Gauge refers to the diameter of strings and is a crucial factor that decides the overall performance of your guitar and how it would sound.

The lighter gauge strings with small diameters are your best friend since they are easier to play but also break easily when compared to the heavier gauge strings. So the heavier ones are more preferred and offer the benefit of sounding fuller and louder than the lighter ones.

Picking a gauge can be tiring work, but if done right, your guitar will be rocking stages with you! So while selecting a gauge for your guitar, make sure to keep in mind the type of the guitar you’re using and whether it’s a small or large one.

For the smaller-bodied ones, choose lighter strings to play your sound perfectly. On the other hand, it’s best to go for the weighty options if you have a larger guitar.

In addition, it’s best to go for a lighter set of strings if you qualify as a picker and choose the heavier ones if you’re best described as a strummer.

Remember to pick the intermediate-sized ones if you are both. Do not ignore the age of your guitar, which also affects the gauge preferences. This is because the heavier strings put a lot of pressure on the neck, leading to an unfortunate disfigurement of your beloved instrument.

So if you want to keep your guitar sheltered from all of these avoidable issues, make sure to be ultra-smart while deciding on the gauge.

3. Material Of The String

Before purchasing, always look for the material of the string. This greatly alters the way your guitar sounds and feels to you while you’re playing your preferred tunes.

Choosing the appropriate material will significantly affect your performance on many levels and might even change your style. So always be cautious prior to selecting a specific material of the wire as it may or may not have the tendency to fulfill your expectations regarding your overall experience with the guitar.

4. Replacing Your Guitar Strings

Guitar strings prove to be one of the most significant aspects of your performance, so you would never want to put yourself and your talent into a situation that might degrade your overall potential.

So to avoid such situations and to keep your performance up to the mark, make sure that, as a regular user, you change those strings every other week or two. If you play your guitar occasionally, then they can surely go a long way without being replaced for months.

Cleaning your guitar regularly and washing your hands before playing it can make a huge difference and help your strings stand the test of time without any unwanted wear and tear that causes the strings to break.

5. Price Of The Strings

Prices vary from one type to another, and it is always better to go for bulk purchases and not just a single set since the former will cost you less. Always make sure that you buy your guitar strings in large volumes to get the best-suited ones for within a comparatively lesser amount.

This would save money as well as precious time and efforts which you might consider devoting to your guitar lessons instead towards unnecessarily visiting stores, again and again, every week or two.

6. Choice Of Strings

Whenever you’re looking for the best acoustic guitar strings for a warm sound, always go for the phosphor bronze ones – their music is darker and brighter than that of those bronze strings.

Phosphor, being the reason behind the durability of the strings, proves to be an improvement and also serves as one of the best acoustic strings for beginners.

On the other hand, brass provides a better metallic sound in comparison to the silk and steel types that bring about more of a ‘former- epoch’ feel from their lighter gauge and ease of operation.

7. Coated Guitar Strings

No matter how much one denies it, changing the strings is tiresome work which we all would like to get rid of. But it is a responsibility that no one can really escape from. Remember that a guitar needs to have its strings changed regularly after a decent amount of usage.

Now a major problem that these strings suffer from is oil corrosion from the fingers. This can somewhat be avoided using phosphorous bronze strings, but a popular method used to prevent this inconvenience is strings coated in a thin layer of plastic i.e., Teflon. Though useful, such strings also make the sound a little duller.

So this is a decision that the guitarist has to make according to his personal preferences and priorities. The coating brings down the overall performance and lowers the output, which means that the vibrations are limited to a significant extent, thereby leading to a decrease in the staging of the guitar.

If you seek durability, then you might have to compromise on one of the highlight features of other strings. Irrespective of the benefit of not getting your strings corroded easily, the coating process comes with minor disadvantages that may not be ruled out.

Never underestimate any of the factors mentioned above while buying guitar strings if you’d like a hassle-free and less-troublesome purchase. These features should give you a better idea about what you can expect from your guitar and the new strings and thus make it easier for you to find the most appropriate ones.

After so many features to look for while buying guitar strings, the next milestone is to find actual ones available in the market. So to help you with finding the best acoustic guitar strings 2019, here are the ten most preferred guitar strings from Amazon which will leave you flabbergasted with their mind-flaying quality and worth as well as demand in the market.

Top 10 Best Acoustic Guitar Strings 2020

1. Elixir

Elixir Best Acoustic Guitar Strings

With a huge demand in the market, this bestseller has never failed to meet the expectations of its customers. With dimensions of 0.6 x 4.1 x 4.7 in, it comes under the lighter gauge category and provides a crisp output.

These strings provide an amazing experience but sometimes may break within a few days of the purchase. But in a majority of cases, the money you invest is all well spent, especially considering that this is one of the best guitar strings for acoustic.

Occasionally, it depends on the type of sound these strings generate. As different people have different choices, some find it’s sound dull and others may think of it as perfect. So you can’t really decide whether the rhythm of these strings suits you before testing them out yourself.

It is always best to try out new things and then decide which one you’d prefer out of all the options available to you. This product is known for its long-term usage, pocket-friendly price, and the sharp and crisp sound – a worthy trademark of Elixir strings for the guitar.


2. Earnie Ball 2146

Earnie Ball 2146

Popular for its longevity and durability, these strings are truly a guitarist’s best friend. They are relatively inexpensive, which means that you can have one of the best acoustic guitar strings for yourself with minimal expenditure. In most cases, they provided a great experience, but once in a while these strings gave out a comparatively dull sound that did not offer a satisfactory experience to its users.

If you wish to get these, make sure that you first buy a single set to try it out and then decide whether or not you require a whole batch. Belonging to the medium-light category, these strings have been liked by many and fulfilled expectations like no other.

In some cases, they broke off in no time, but there is a possibility that a slight mistake in the handling process during the application might have contributed to this. These strings are not as harsh on the fingers, which makes the play a lot more comfortable. So if you’re willing to buy this set of strings, do give it a try and think about whether you’ll need to buy more of these.


3. D’Addario EJ16-3D

D’Addario EJ16-3D

The product comes with a bright tone and a lock twist with a carbon core and wrap wire – 80/20 Bronze. It is known for its incredibly crisp sound. These are finger-friendly and the notes sound perfect as well. But always make sure that you buy the real deal and avoid duplicated ones that may not offer the comfort you would normally expect from the money you pay for these strings.

It should also be noted that the sound of these strings proves to be suitable for many, but it mostly depends on the person. So do not trust the word of another until you try it yourself. With different people come different desires, and it’s not necessary that what others like is necessarily the one which you’d want for yourself either.

These strings have a lower price as compared to many out there in the market and are satisfactory enough. Some find it harsh on the fingers and others find it amazing, which gives rise to two sets of notions. So always make sure to try them before they permanently replace the older ones.


4. Earnie Ball Aluminum Bronze

Earnie Ball Aluminum Bronze

Belonging to the medium-light category with aluminum-bronze, these strings are a bestseller on the internet. Weighing less than many others, this 0.32 ounces item leaves a wonderful impact on the majority of users.

These are easy to bend while playing and offer an improvised experience with your guitar. They appear old and rough because of their alloy, which might leave your ‘adapted-to-seeing-the-shine’ eyes in doubt at first. But in most cases, this does not matter since its high-quality sound is always there to rule out the drawback of an old appearance. After all, with these strings, it’s the music that shines more than the strings.

Some users have reportedly found the roughness in the touch and feel of these strings which make it a little uncomfortable to use. Some find it weird as they are not adapted to seeing such a sight of new strings having a torn look with a sound which again varies from person to person.

With a pocket-friendly price and such a great experience in numerous cases, these are a must try strings with a sound loved and preferred by many users out there!


5. D’Addario EJ11-3D

D’Addario EJ11-3D

Providing the right amount of bass, this set of strings is a must-try for a life-changing experience with your guitar. It is truly one of the best acoustic guitar strings on the internet.

They are best for long-term and regular use where you want to protect yourself from the weekly struggle of replacing those strings with new ones. After a point, they tend to appear dull and sound dead, but not so in this case. Many of its users are happy and are ready to buy the whole set. They tend to balance the sound and produce the best ones for you.

But always make sure you’re aware of your taste perfectly well so that you know how much more enriching you need your sound to be. If you happen to find yourself in a dilemma where you’re confused about which string to start with, you’re definitely thinking about the right set to buy for your guitar that won’t bring even a bit of disappointment in exchange for the money spent on it.


6. Martin & Co MEC12

Martin & Co MEC12

Weighing as low as 0.64 ounces, its quality lies far beyond your imagination. With a medium string gauge, this product is good for all kinds of styles. Usually, the strings show a natural balance of sound with crispness and clarity.

These are durable for sure, but sometimes they prove to be soulless with almost no volume in the tone. But this minor drawback is inconsequential when it comes to its other aspects.

There has been noticeable buzzing in the wires sometimes, which surely isn’t a plus from a lot of its users. Moreover, these strings have notably been the best as far as tuning is concerned.

Using them brings a world of difference since they’re one of the most in-demand in the market. These usually aren’t the ones with the coatings, but they make the whole experience a lot better.

From sounds to tunings and its feel of playing, it creates a huge impact on the performance of the guitar and the way its owner plays it.

The all-new martin set of strings proves to be an excellent choice if they’re taken good care of after use. Being in high demand by people yearning to try it out, don’t forget to explore this fantastic purchase that’s friendly with your fingers and offers an amazing experience.


7. D’Addario Nickel Bronze

D’Addario Nickel Bronze

With a small string gauge, this set comes under the category of lighter strings which are again, proved to be a user’s, happy mate. These strings might have a harsh effect on your fingertips, which makes playing slightly discomforting if played for a longer period. Neglecting this jarring effect on the fingers, these strings sound truly amazing and fantastic.

Many also choose to make it a permanent choice for their acoustic guitar. If you’re willing to kickstart your routine with an all-new tone, this is the perfect set that won’t leave you disappointed in any way. If you’d like to get your hands on the best acoustic guitar strings, this might turn out to be your best choice so far.

With this excellent set of strings in the store, you don’t even need to worry about the way your guitar would bloom with the colors of melodious tones. But before making it a permanent choice, make sure that you try it out yourself and then decide whether it’s capable enough to suit your needs.


8. Martin & Co MEC13

Martin & Co MEC13

These medium gauge strings might not feel as comfortable at the start, but they surely fit within two to three days. Many of its users have clearly shown an interest in buying these as permanent strings since they are so compatible with the guitar and deliver melodious results once fitted in.

These strings are durable and long-lasting, which helps in saving your time, money, and efforts. Surely these strings are one of the most suited for those playing for a longer duration as compared to those who play occasionally.

Normally, this set of strings provides depth and tone to the music that’s generated and showcases harmonious tunes echoing from it. In addition, they aren’t too harsh on your fingertips and feel comfortable and easy to play.

The rest varies from person to person as everyone has a different taste and preferences when it comes to the brightness and volume as well as the depth of the music that echoes from the strings. So give them a try it if you consider yourself a vibrant person.


9. Earnie Tone Pack

Earnie Tone Pack

These strings soothe the needs of those in love with bright tones and tiny, thin strings.

The catchy-sounds of this particular item are available at a pocket-friendly price that’s preferred a lot by its users. The play is not so harsh on the fingers and surely feels comfortable. Falling under the light gauge category, these are also one of the best strings available across all stores.

Thee rhythm echoes vibrantly from the strings, which are quite catchy and attractive when played. Earnie ball has never disappointed its users or offered stuff that holds even a slight chance of discrepancies.


10. Martin & Co MA175

Belonging to the light gauge category, the product seems the most preferred and is an excellent buy with fantastic sound quality. It uses Bronze as its material and is quite comfortable to play.

It is supremely beneficial in the long run. Durability and long-term usage are the trademarks of the product and make it quite attractive for users. A pocket-friendly price gives it a bonus and the set is not a disappointment once used. These strings are an advantage for many, but like every product, it requires an initial attempt and a decision on whether it qualifies for permanent or occasional usage.

So if you’re looking for bronze guitar strings, this surely is the right choice with its bargain-priced offer.


Is This Advice Even Good?

Well, we can assure you that all the information above has come from a trusted source or straight from the people. We performed a deep dive into the internet realm to get the best results for all you guitar lovers and solve each one of your string problems for good. And what better than obtaining insights about guitars from professionals themselves.

After all, people who’ve faced these problems would know which brands are the best and what kinds of strings would be best-suited according to the player’s needs. For this, we searched online communities, forums, and various other acoustic guitar platforms where guitarists prefer to communicate. We also asked some of our personal friends with experience for the best guitar strings for beginners.

We also cross-checked their own choices with online reviews and our own experiences with some of the best strings in the world. We bought from the top 20 brands and used them according to various preferences to narrow down our list.

Some Important Tips For All The Guitar Fanatics

Always remember that it is not necessary that the more the price, the better the strings you buy. A big NO! Whenever it comes to purchasing the best acoustic guitar strings, try as many different brands as possible and then decide which one of them is the best-suited for you.

Whenever there’s a confusion, always prioritize your comfort and then jump to any other criteria while selecting a product. If you aren’t comfortable with the strings, you might be affecting your fingertips, which again will affect your performance to a significant extent. This might ruin your self-confidence by deteriorating your staging with the guitar.

Never go for a bulk purchase before you’re even sure about every single feature of a particular set of strings. This might waste your money, which surely no one likes, and may seem challenging, but once you’re fully aware of the variety of options in the market and their features, you will be able to choose your masterpiece.

Never hesitate to put in some extra efforts for your guitar since this might turn out to be a significant milestone when it comes to your career or hobbies.

Till then, best of luck for your next purchase!

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