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  • Heavier gauge strings = Chunkier tone?

    I just bought myself a Godin Redline 1 (EMG81), which I intend to use it solely for rhythm guitar in the band, in drop C tuning (CGCFAD).

     

    I'm used to the 10-52 string gauge for Drop C, however, since this guitar won't be used for any solo-ing at all, I plan to put on a really heavy gauge to achieve that chunky tone.

     

    I was thinking of either 11-54 or 12-56. Which would be a better choice from your experience?

     

    The last time I used Ernie Ball Not Even Slinky (12-56), the 3rd string seemed the resonate a little oddly.

     I'm not sure why Ernie Ball chose to use 24p instead of a 24w.


  • #2

    id just go with 12-52. 

     

    10-52 are the top half of a 12 set anyway, so it wont feel that much different. Heavier than 12s you may need to file the nut or whatever for very little benefit. I know on Fender saftey posts 52 is about the limit to fit in the hole. Yes heavier strings sound a bit beefier but its not like you cant sound beefy with 8s.

    Community Agent ProvocateurThe REAL Angry

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    • 1001gear
      1001gear commented
      Editing a comment

      Yeah, I use 32 - 52 wounds at E and while they aren't exactly Tele brite, they they don't get snorting dark unless that's the tone they're pushing.


    • KevinTJH
      KevinTJH commented
      Editing a comment

      I've never actually seen 12-52 before. Were you referring to this one? http://www.daddario.com/DADProductDetail.Page?ActiveID=3769&productid=28&p roductname=EJ21_Nickel_Wound__Jazz_Light__12_52

       

      Personally, if I were going to go with gauge 12, i'd prefer the 6th string to be at least 54 or 56.



      The music store is setting up my guitar for free so I thought I might as well get them to do everything all at once.

      I've read that most people who use 12-56 end up buying an extra 24w separately. However, that would be a huge hassle for me since I'll have to get them from overseas.

      I considered getting a 7-string set but the string gauges just seem a little too odd to use.


  • #3

    I don't think you can really increase the chunk too much by using thicker strings because eventually the added tension gives a little extra brightness as well. To get a heavier sound the easiest way is to tune downward.

    Electrics: Fender '73 Mustang RI, Epiphone Inspired by John Lennon Casino, Gibson 60s Tribute Les Paul Studio, Daisy Rock Retro-H Deluxe, Squier Hello Kitty Strat x2Acoustics: Taylor 316CE-LTD, Seagull Entourage Rustic CW QITBasses: Squier Badtz Maru Bronco Bass, Aria CSB-300, Fender Mustang Bass RIAmps: Vox TB18C1, Vox Pathfinder 210, Peavey Transtube Envoy, Ampeg Micro VR StackMy Band: http://mittensband.com

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    • jpnyc
      jpnyc commented
      Editing a comment

      honeyiscool wrote:

      I don't think you can really increase the chunk too much by using thicker strings because eventually the added tension gives a little extra brightness as well. To get a heavier sound the easiest way is to tune downward.


      It


  • #4

    I'm not too keen in swapping out the pickups to be honest, because one of the main reasons I bought the guitar was for the EMG81 pickup.

     

    I've got 2 other Drop C guitars both with 10-52. So I figured I might as well try something different with this one. The scale length is 24 3/4 I think.

     

    One of my music friends has his ESP guitar tuned to Drop B, and he uses a 7 string set (w/o the first string). It's EXTREMELY tight and sound very chunky, but I've never heard it with a lighter gauge so I wouldn't know if the strings made a difference.

     

    Max Calavera is an example of a rhythm guitarist who doesn't play any lead guitar at all (he even removes his 2 treble strings). I think he uses pretty heavy strings as well. So I guess there must be a reason why a pure rhythm guitarist could be inclined to use thicker strings?

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    • jpnyc
      jpnyc commented
      Editing a comment

      KevinTJH wrote: EXTREMELY tight and sound very chunky, but I've never heard it with a lighter gauge so I wouldn't know if the strings made a difference.

      Heavier strings will do wonders for low-end sound. You can buy six string baritone sets by D


    • Mad Tele
      Mad Tele commented
      Editing a comment

      KevinTJH wrote:

      I'm not too keen in swapping out the pickups to be honest, because one of the main reasons I bought the guitar was for the EMG81 pickup.

       

      I've got 2 other Drop C guitars both with 10-52. So I figured I might as well try something different with this one. The scale length is 24 3/4 I think.

       

      One of my music friends has his ESP guitar tuned to Drop B, and he uses a 7 string set (w/o the first string). It's EXTREMELY tight and sound very chunky, but I've never heard it with a lighter gauge so I wouldn't know if the strings made a difference.

       

      Max Calavera is an example of a rhythm guitarist who doesn't play any lead guitar at all (he even removes his 2 treble strings). I think he uses pretty heavy strings as well. So I guess there must be a reason why a pure rhythm guitarist could be inclined to use thicker strings?


      maybe its a feel thing, one can strum harder with heavier strings. Listen to ac/dc mal uses 11s, angus 8s and when they both play rythm there isnt a noticable difference in heaviness or lack of. One thing I figure heavy strings will drive an amp harder, for example with my tweed deluxe I can get the lower strings to distort easier than the unwound ones. 

       

      tony iommi uses 8s but he also always chooses to play higher up on the neck on a lower string rather than lower on a higher string. for example playing an open A note sounds twangier than playing it 5th fret e string which sounds beefier.  I notice the same thing ill play 10th fret B string instead of 5th fret high E because the note sounds more round or full on the B string than high E. so there is something to string size and tone. much to the chagrin of internet people


  • #5

    I use 12 or 13 guage on strat type guitars.  I use 14's on a baritone.  The reasons I do so are for the feel.  Not the tone.  However, good feel equals good playing equals good tone.  IMO.  

    I have an EQ pedal that requires tweaking the bass knob about 2 mm clockwise to get a chunkier sound.  Works for me.

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    • honeyiscool
      honeyiscool commented
      Editing a comment
      The reason why your friends are using heavier strings is not because they sound chunkier, it's because you're tuning to drop C.

  • #6

    KevinTJH wrote:

    I was thinking of either 11-54 or 12-56


     

    Metal ropes like those will make yer geetar sound like it's a plucked grand piano.  

     


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