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5 Best Acoustic Guitar Strings For Beginners (2020)

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Sometimes you just need to stop whatever you are doing and let your heart flow with the music you make. In fact, sometimes you just need to focus on learning and getting better through music. Mastering something really makes you feel invincible in many different ways.

It does not matter if it’s your first guitar or last, you will end up having to change the strings on it. Those fragile little things need both care and change. And, it does not end there.

Your performance depends a lot on the type of strings you use. Why wouldn’t it? It is basically the only thing you need to work on when on a guitar. So, the type of string you use based on your playing style also matters.

Unfortunately, there is a lot that matters and you will have to put in some efforts to find the best acoustic guitar strings for beginners. Our buying guide and the reviews of the best available acoustic strings will definitely help you through the process. Let’s begin enlightening you then.

Best Acoustic Guitar Strings For Beginners:

Our #5 Picks

  1. D’Addario EJ16 Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings (Light)
  2. Elixir Strings Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings with NANOWEB Coating (80/20)
  3. Martin Guitar Original Acoustic M170 Guitar Strings (80/20 Bronze)
  4. Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood Phosphor Bronze Acoustic String Set
  5. Stringjoy NB1254 Natural Bronze Acoustic Guitar 

Best Acoustic Guitar Strings Review

1. D’Addario EJ16 Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings (Light)

D’Addario EJ16-3D Phosphor Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings, Light Tension – Corrosion-Resistant Phosphor Bronze, Offers a Warm, Bright and Well-Balanced Acoustic Tone – Pack of 3 Sets

D’Addario is a name that anyone can trust. In fact, you can consider it the most trusted brand in the guitar string industry. Apparently, despite the brand reputation, D’Addario strings are quite affordable.

Now, these Phosphor Bronze guitar strings are quite durable. Apparently, people who have always used these strings keep coming back to it after trying other strings. The strings have a steel core with a phosphor bronze surface.

The surface does an important job of protecting the string from environmental issues like rust and corrosion. Therefore, you can expect the string to last quite a while if you use it right. Apart from that, the material aids a warm and bright tone.

The problem, however, is that there is no coating to make the string feel smoother on your hands. Other than that, these strings fall under the light string gauge. So, you will judge it easier to learn. Also, many may not prefer the tone of this acoustic string.

Apparently, the gauge of the string ranges from 0.012 to 0.053.

Pros:

  • A brand with a good reputation.
  • Lasts long when used right.
  • Warm and bright tone.
  • The light gauge goes easy on fingers.
  • Very reasonably priced.
  • Does not take long to settle.

Cons:

  • The tone may not be good enough.
  • Not very soothing on the fingers without the coating.

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2. Elixir Strings Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings with NANOWEB Coating. (80/20)

Elixir Strings 80/20 Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings w NANOWEB Coating, Light (.012-.053)

Cannot really give your best when playing the guitar because the strings hurt your fingers? Then, these Elixir 80/20 bronze strings are for you. In fact, its nanoweb coating is super smooth and gentle on your fingers.

Apparently, these strings are made of 80% copper and 20% zinc bronze wrap wire. As you already know that this combination of metals creates a very nice warm sound. However, many users complained about the tone being too metallic.

Other than that, although the coating provides a great feel, it may not last long. Rust and corrosion may get to the strings eventually. Also, a few customers complained about the string breaking too soon.

But, this is one of those types of string which is suits your guitar will completely be worth it. Worth it in the sense that it is pricier than other strings but the quality and tone it provides to the perfect guitar is unmatchable.

Pros:

  • Very easy and soothing for sore fingers.
  • Magnificent tone on guitars that it perfectly is suitable for.
  • Good metal composition.
  • Great build quality.
  • Coated well.

Cons:

  • A bit expensive.
  • Might break.
  • The coating may not be very efficient.
  • The sound may seem metallic.

Check Price And Reviews on Amazon

3. Martin Guitar Original Acoustic M170 Guitar Strings

Martin Guitar Original Acoustic M170, 80/20 Bronze, Extra Light-Gauge Guitar Strings

The Martin M170 acoustic guitar strings are excellent for beginners thanks to their thin gauge – 0.010-0.047 inches.

Requiring little effort for pressing, these strings are significant for building finger strength in beginners. Skilled guitarists who do a lot of fingerpicking will be delighted with the feel and performance of the Martin strings as well.

Thanks to its 80/20 composition, the M170 strings produce bright trebles and rich bass tones. The sound profile of the Martin strings suits well any playing style, and they can be used for folk, blues, rock, country, and pretty much any other music genre.

The build quality of the Martin M170 strings is great as well. Manufactured with high-quality bronze, the Martin guitar strings are engineered to withstand rigorous playing.

You have to pay the price for quality, of course – the M170 strings are rather expensive. They are totally worth the money, however, especially if you have the skill to uncover their full potential.

Free shipping and the guaranteed lowest price as SamAsh.com

This particular string pack also includes 3 sets of guitar strings. We’d like each set to come in its own sealed package – currently, Martin sells the 3-pack in a single bag. This isn’t very organized, in our opinion.

Pros:

  • Produces bright trebles and rich bass tones.
  • Excellent for beginners thanks to its thin gauge.
  • Extremely durable.

Cons:

  • Pricey.

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4. Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood Acoustic Phosphor Bronze String Set

Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood Medium Light Acoustic Phosphor Bronze String Set (12 - 54)

Do you take details seriously? If you do not then you should. Because the minor details together make a great big thing and an example of such a massive thing is these Ernie Ball 2146 Earthwood strings.

Apparently, it consists of tin, copper, and phosphorus around its steel core. The sound it provides is amazingly rich, deep, and earthy. As there is Earthwood in its name, something earthy was expected, wasn’t it?

What people face a problem with, however, is the quality of the strings. Some consider it too light and some too heavy. However, this mainly depends on the type of guitar you are using.

This is an absolute choice for beginners as the strings are quite forgiving on your fingers because of the coating. Apart from that, the different strings show varying durability. One of the string may break too early.

Many may not like the tone but it is an outstanding deal for the price it comes at. You may consider it the best acoustic guitar string for a warm sound.

Pros:

  • Attention to detail.
  • Well-constructed with great materials.
  • Easy to tune and attach.
  • Warm and deep sound.
  • Quality build.
  • Very reasonable price.

Cons:

  • Many may not like the tone.
  • A few strings may break too easily.

Check Price And Reviews on Amazon

5. Stringjoy NB1254 Natural Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings

Stringjoy NB1254 Natural Bronze Acoustic Guitar Strings, (Light Gauge - 12-54)

Cannot track down the natural non-plastic tone you are looking for? The one that reminds you of the green trees on a way back from a day-long trip? Then, you need to experience the Stringjoy NB1254 guitar strings.

In fact, these strings completely cut out the plastic sound other strings provide and reward you with a gentle, warm, natural sound that resonates really well. Furthermore, it is made of high-quality materials as well. Apart from that, the company has an interesting way of assuring its quality.

Apparently, it tests its strings by three people to ensure that the strings last. You do not have to keep tuning the strings before you play, the strings hold tune quite well. Other than that, you may feel that these strings are a bit expensive for what they provide as you may find similar options at a lower price.

However, the brand name and the tone matters so it is best to get the best even if you have to spend a bit more. That is, only if it is a good choice for your guitar.

Pros:

  • Well-tested for quality performance.
  • Minimum errors.
  • Lasts quite long.
  • Natural, warm sound.

Cons:

  • A bit expensive for the quality.
  • May not suit all guitars.

Check Price And Reviews on Amazon

Best Acoustic Guitar Strings For Beginners: The Buying Guide

Here are a few factors you should take care of before choosing acoustic guitars string for your guitar.

1. What you need

As you already know that the guitar strings have a great influence on the sound you make. Now, you may have a particular style you follow or a specific guitar you play on. Both need strings that perfectly match them.

For example, if you make soft tones then lighter strings are better for you. Apart from that, the various guitar types work best with strings specifically suited for them. For example, you can never use acoustic strings on an electric or classical guitar.

This will ruin not just the string but also the guitar itself. So, it is best to figure out what you actually need before you set out to buy the strings.

Best-Acoustic-Guitar-Strings-For-Beginners-Chart
Image Source: http://www.daddario.com/DADProductDetail.Page?

2. The material building the string

Believe it or not, the material building the string contributes a lot to the sound it will be making. And, strings are made of various materials now. Let’s check out your options.

Bronze: It is quite a popular choice because of the bright, sunshiny tone it provides. However, you won’t get pure bronze but usually alloys of zinc, copper, tin, etc. Bronze usually follows the 80-20 ratio where 80% of it is copper with a coating of zinc on top at 20%.

The problem with bronze is that it corrodes and oxidizes too quickly and easily so these strings do not hold their charms for long. You will find Phosphor-Bronze combinations as well which lasts a bit longer. There is the option of choosing Aluminum-bronze as well.

Nylon: Remember that I mentioned that some guitars are better off with certain kinds of strings than others? I meant classical guitar with nylon strings. Usually, you have to use nylon strings with classical guitars and they have their own soft and low tension tones. Apart from that, you can use it with nylon-strung guitars as well.

Stainless Steel: What is the first thing that comes to your mind the moment you read stainless steel?- rust? Anti-corrosion? Yes, that is exactly what these steel strings are best at- lasting with a glow. Furthermore, they produce soft tones as well with a bit of rusty touch.

Brass: Brass reminds you of metal right? So, will the tone produced by brass strings.

Polymer Coated: If you do not care about the sound much but the practice and durability then you can try out polymer-coated strings as they resist corrosion quite well. The tone is warm and the strings do look attractive.

Silk and Steel: Contrary to stainless steel strings, steel scored strings can come coated with silk as well. As you can imagine, it will be super gentle on your fingers.

Select the material carefully to suit your own needs.

3. The string gauge/ diameter

Finding it difficult to learn the guitar? The string gauge can somewhat make things easier for you. You will get strings with various diameters and the six strings themselves differ from each other.

Light Gauge: Want to find it easier to play the guitar because you are a beginner? Then, the light strings that need less pressure on them can help you. Furthermore, if you like to make softer and thinner tones then the lighter gauge strings are the best for fingerpicking.

However, they do break easily as well. The light nature has its cons. The diameter usually starts at 0.010 and ends at 0.054

Medium Gauge String: If you love trying out various musical styles then the medium gauge strings are right for you. You can somewhat control the tone with your skills. In fact, you can reach medium lows and medium highs as well.

They have a warm sound and will last long as well. This usually has the thinnest string at 0.013 and the thickest at 0.056.

Heavy Gauge String: This is the most difficult type of strings to master. You have to put quite some pressure on the strings to be good. Also, the tone will be very warm, deep, and soothing.

The diameter usually ranges from 0.014 to 0.059. Apart from that, the size and build of your guitar matter too. If you have a smaller guitar, you will need lighter gauge most likely.

Check our article on acoustic guitar strings for more info as we examine in-depth and explained everything that you need to know.

4. The String Coating

You know how metals can be- corrosive, rusty over time, etc. But, you do not always like the idea of replacing strings very often. That is why the manufacturers take care of it by coating the strings.

However, when you get something better, you need to give something in return. In this case, you get greater life of the string but reduced tonal properties. The tone may not be as soothing or full as it was with uncoated strings.

Things sure are getting better with advanced technology. And, uncoated strings do respond to weather and time in a negative way. Apart from that, a coated string will make things easier on your hand. A smoother surface may help you play faster.

Now you know that in order to know how to choose acoustic guitars string, you need to know what you want and need first.

5. Price and Durability

As you already know, you need to change the strings quite often. Guitar strings do not usually last longer if you play on it frequently or the weather is humid. If you are a beginner then you will experience torn strings once in a while.

Now, the question is how often are you willing to take the burden of changing the strings? If you are alright with changing often, you can totally opt for a cheaper string that you can replace frequently. On the other hand, if you want both long string life and better tone then you can look at the higher end strings that are a bit more expensive.

Best Acoustic Guitar Strings for Beginners: The Benefits

 You would not consider buying strings if it wasn’t beneficial. The benefits of buying your own acoustic strings are many.

  • A sound of your style: As you already know, the strings affect the sound. Apparently, it is mainly the strings that affect the sound. Therefore, test a few strings and you may end up finding a tone that speaks volumes about your soul music.
  • A backup: You never know when a string will break and what situation you will be left in. So, an extra pair never hurts.
  • More quality and less trouble: The right strings will not break easily if you play them right. Thus, you can save money while also practicing without interruption.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are 80/20 guitar strings?

80/20 guitar strings have a metal wrap wire composition of 80% copper and 20% zinc. These strings offer a brighter and more ringy tone compared to, say, 92/8 nickel plated steel strings.

What gauge acoustic guitar strings should a beginner use?

Beginners should probably stick to gauges 10-47 to 11-52. These gauges are thinner, and although it’s generally considered that thinner strings have worse tone than thick strings, thin string gauges are ideal for newbies.

The primary reason for this is that thinner strings are easier to press. As a beginning guitarist, you’ll get sore fingertips along with calluses at the beginning. Thin strings will somewhat ease out the pain by not requiring much effort for pressing.

Until you build strength in your fingers and get used to playing the guitar, a thinner set of strings would be ideal for you.

How often should I restring my guitar?

The most common instance when guitarists change the strings is when the string breaks. It mostly happens in the case of beginners. However, if you feel that humidity has ruined the sound of your strings and no matter how well you tune your guitar the sound just is not right, then it is time to restring your guitar.

How to take care of guitar strings?

Taking care of guitar strings is really no big deal. You can wipe off the oil that gets on it from your fingers. Apart from that, all you have to do is keep it in a moisture-free zone to keep it safe.

You can put your guitar in a case with something that soaks moisture in or keeps the moisture level normal.

Top Selling Acoustic Guitar Strings On Amazon

Conclusion

Music is always close to a musician’s heart and materialistic obstacles should be overcome at all costs. A guitar string can cause a lot of trouble if it is not the right one. Therefore, you have to look hard for the right one.

We have reviewed some of the best guitar strings brands and the buying guide should also help you in case you want to judge yourself. Take your time, use your brain and hands to discover the best guitar strings that will help you have the best moment as well.

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