Review: Classical Guitar Strings

I’ll be reviewing classical guitar string on this page. Please realize that I can only review strings I’ve tried out. If you know of a string company I’ve not listed let me know about it.

Also, please email me your reviews telling me about your favorite strings and why!  Email: bradford@thisisclassicalguitar.com

Note: Strings are matter of preference and are also greatly affected by the guitar, player, and performance space. Therefore, these are generalizations at best!

Review of Classical Guitar Strings:

Savarez New Cristal – Corum (medium tension) – A clear nylon string with Corum basses. These are very legato and and smooth sounding string. I find that they are more clear and project better than most clear nylon strings. I use these when I want to sound musical and legato. Sometimes, especially for the first few days, the basses overpower the trebles but that evens out after some playing. The corum basses are fairly bright and clear. They have a new bass set called cantiga as well. I find the corums keep their clarity longer than most but don’t give the deep dark sound of D’Addario basses. Depends on your guitar as dark can also be muddy.

Savarez Allience – Corum – Trebles are composite trebles monofilament (so called carbon strings). These project sound wonderfully and have the greatest clarity of all the strings I’ve tried. A bit harsh sometimes but it can be worth it. I use these when I need to cut through the texture, be heard loud and clear, or just want maximum balance and clarity. These are small diameter strings with a bright sound so they can make beginners sound overly thin and bright, even brittle. Also some people like the feel of thicker strings so these might seem small. However, in the hands of a profession or advanced player they can really bring the guitar alive. My guitar sounds more intense and responsive with these strings. Legato playing might be slightly reduced, or at least the smooth, soft touch needed for some music. However, these are nice strings for ensemble playing or when you want volume and clarity.

Oasis Carbon Strings: Similar to the above treble strings but still pretty harsh (not always a bad thing). They are clear and project wonderful just as the Savarez Allience but maybe with a bit more body to the sound. However, beware that hard tension here is intensely hard tension. These won’t give you the warmth of a nylon string but will certainly give you the clarity. The thing I like about carbon strings is the balanced sound you get. You don’t have as wide a range of sounds but they are uniform and even. I didn’t like the bass strings, maybe I received a bad set or something but the basses sounded dead on my guitar. You might prefer these over the Savarez Allience if your guitar is already fairly bright. Also, I’ve had a couple break on me…maybe a fluke?

D’Addario Pro-Arte Nylon Classical Guitar Strings, Hard Tension A clear nylon string with a fantastic price. These are a standard and the quality is always consistent. The trebles sound can sound a bit muddy/plastic on some guitars but the basses are full and rich. The trebles sound better after a few days to my ears. When I judge other strings I compare them to these because these are a standard. A nice legato sound but not the projection or clarity of carbon strings. However, an excellent student string as they are warm and mellow. I actually use these often due to the price. Also comes in Normal & Extra-Hard.

D’Addario ProArte DynaCore Classical Guitar Strings, Titanium Trebles, Hard Tension A composite nylon string. A bit more bright and better projection than the nylon equivalent above but still thick diameter. These are pretty good and might be great for some people. I’m not a huge fan of thick diameter strings, I fid them to be thuddy and muddy but that all depends on the guitar. In general, a decent string and a good move for a company that I used to accociate with lower levels, but they are in the game now!

D’Addario Carbon Strings.

Galli Strings Genius Carbonio  – I like these Galli carbon strings but sadly they have some quality control issues. I’ve ordered strings twice before in packages of 3 sets and each time one out of the three have been defective. Sad because they are one of the best strings out there. A little calmer than the Oasis strings and maybe more musical. Still balanced, bright, and excellent projection. [3/5 stars, spectacular strings but the quality control issue means I can’t give them a high rating.]

Galli Nylon Review – coming soon…

More reviews coming soon!