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Question on string size

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Trusted Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 21
Topic starter  

Howdy, I am just starting out so I am still a big guitar dummy. I am learning to play country mixed with some western swing and alittle bluegrass. I am playing an Ovation Custom Balladeer Acoustic/Electric, what size and type of strings are better for someone just starting out, but will still give the correct sound for the style of music I will be playing?

Also, is it a good idea to have a music shop do a setup? Check the action and truss rod adjustment ect.

Bill :shock:

De Oppresso Liber

Noble Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 1157

String size comes down to personal preference. Smaller diameters will be easier to fret but sound will be compromised, heavier strings just the opposite. If your fairly mechanically inclined you can do a set up yourself check Nils site for info, otherwise definitely have your guitar set up if you change string diameters.

Chuck Norris invented Kentucky Fried Chicken's famous secret recipe, with eleven herbs and spices. But nobody ever mentions the twelfth ingredient: Fear!

Eminent Member
Joined: 22 years ago
Posts: 29

When I was starting out on acoustic, I got the lightest (that is, the thinnest) strings available. These are easier on the tips of the fingers, and are also a little easier to play, as they are under slightly less tension, and are thus easier to fret. Later on, you can get some heavier strings if the mood grabs you. However, after 7 years of acoustic I still use the light strings.

The best sounding light strings, at least to my ears, are the Martin SP Acoustic strings, although they are a little more expensive than standard D'Addario or Dean Markley. Maybe give these a go and see what you think, you can always change them later if the mood hits 8)


Use the Big Muff, Luke