Your guitar strings allow you to speak to your guitar. Strings take your touch, and send vibrations through the body of the guitar to create sound. Without strings, your guitar is nothing but a block of expensive wood. Choosing the best strings for your electric guitar is crucial.
How We Made Our Picks
Editors from the BYJU’S FutureSchool blog researched the most popular electric guitar strings and cross referenced that against ones that members of our music curriculum team reviewed. The result: a list of vetted electric guitar strings to help get you strumming like a pro.
The Best Electric Guitar Strings
Electric guitar strings are measured in terms of gauges and thickness. They range from 0.008, the lightest, to 0.56, the heaviest. You have a lot of options at your disposal, so figuring out what will work for you can be difficult. We’ve compiled a list to help you choose the best electric guitar strings for your playing style.
[Read: How to Play Guitar]
1. Ernie Ball Regular Slinky
Ernie Ball uses the best technology and the finest materials to create their strings, which is why many consider them the best guitar strings for electric guitars. The Regular Slinky produces rich harmonics, making it perfect for rock and roll.
2. Ernie Ball Super Slinky
The Super Slinky is made of nickel-plated steel similar to the Regular Slinky, but also features a series of lock twists to make sure that the wire around the ball is secure. Ernie Ball’s Super Slinky option is a culmination of 50 years of experience in the string making business, and they are among the best electric guitar strings available today.
3. Fender 150R Pure Nickel Set
Fender is one of the best electric guitar string manufacturers in the world. Beginners and masters alike have fallen in love with the Fender series, and with more than half a century of manufacturing experience, they are one of the most trusted names in music. The Fender 150R is ideal for lovers of blues, rock, and jazz. The wire is made with state-of-the-art technology and techniques to ensure that your guitar produces classic, round, and full tones.
[Read: How to Tune a Guitar]
4. Ernie Ball Super Slinky .009-.042
The Super Slinky .009-.042 has the nickel-plated carbon steel core that Ernie Ball is famous for. However, the .009-.042 range also has increased precision wounds that are designed for durability and reduced slippage.
5. Gibson Brite Wires Electric Guitar Strings, Light 10-46
Gibson’s Brite Wires are ideal for beginners and experts alike, with strings that are solid and well made. They pair amazingly well with Les Paul guitars and are specially formulated to create bright and crisp sounds. The Swedish steel hex will suit your needs, and they are affordable for most budgets.
6. D’Addario NYXL1046 Nickel Wound, Regular Light & Pro-Winder Bundle
D’Addario is counted among the top string-making companies in the world and has been working tirelessly since 1947 to create the best electric guitar strings for musicians across the world. These strings bend more than the average string, sound louder, and stay in tune better compared to their competitors.
[Read: How to Hold a Guitar]
7. DR Strings NMCE-10 DR NEON, Medium
DR is known for creating specially designed hand-made strings for people that want to play authentic and soulful guitar. Their manufacturing standards are high. Wires are checked several times in the production process to ensure that every string stays in its original condition, so you can be assured you’re getting consistently high quality every time you purchase DR strings.
8. Elixir Strings with NANOWEB Coating, Light (.010-.046)
Elixir guitar strings are made by studying and analyzing tones and frequencies, then creating a final chord that’s made up of Polyweb coating with ultra-thin nanoweb that can fit any type of guitar. The ultra-thin coating creates a bright, yet crisp tone.
9. Elixir Strings with NANOWEB Coating, Medium (.011-.049)
These Elixir strings are medium-sized strings that are pieces of playable art. They’ve earned a special following among professionals because of the unique ability to keep their tone longer than other electric guitar strings. They are coated, which protects them from problems like dust, and gaps popping up in the winding where gunk usually builds up.
10. D’Addario EXL110-10P Nickel Wound Strings
What makes the EXL110-10P one of the best electric guitar strings on the market? They combine the most advanced winding technology with stringent wire inspection to create these amazing, precise, highly magnetic plated steel strings that will blow you away.
[Read: Finger Picked Guitar]
11. GHS Guitar Boomers Nickel-Plated
GHS isn’t the most popular string manufacturer out there, but they’re still on our list of the best electric guitar strings, and they’re worth taking a chance on. They make round-wound, nickel-plated steel on hex core strings that are on the brighter end of the tonal spectrum.
12. Ernie Ball Cobalt
The Cobalt creates a stronger magnetic relationship between pickups and strings than any other product on the market. They come with a punchiness that nothing can prepare you for, and feel smooth to the touch.
13. The DR Veritas
The Veritas strings are composed of quantum nickel to give them a longer shelf life than other strings. Their intonation adds a stronger tone because of the increased levels of magnetism. Try out the Veritas and you’re in for a surprise!
14. The Dunlop Heavy Core (Heaviest)
Dunlop Heavy Cores are exactly what they sound like. They have a 12-54 inch gauge and are fantastic for drop tuning and baritones. They’re definitely some of the best electric guitar strings available for fans of heavy metal.
15. The Optima 2028 BM Gold Brian May
Optima is certainly one of the most exotic brands on the market. Their Brian May series features a 24K gold coating, and has that signature “gold” sound that these British guitar geniuses are known for. Besides the unique sound, you can count on these for superb durability.
16. Rotosound Top Tape
Flat-wound Top Tape strings are perfect for smooth, jazzy tones. The 12-52 set in particular comes with a heavy gauge which is ideal for jazz lovers, and you can expect the G string to be wound, unlike most string sets.
17. Elixir Optiweb
Optiweb strings come with different coatings to increase their lifespan. This practice is controversial (it reduces the string’s natural resonance), but there should be no reduction in sound quality when done well. Experimenting with coats in this way makes Elixir one of the best electric guitar string manufacturers in the world.
18. The D’Addario EXL
The EXL range focuses on low-end smoothness. The strings are nickel-wound to give your guitar a more vintage sound. You might also notice increased output and brightness, and the strings are semi-flat to alter their feel. This is one of D’Addario’s best-sellers and is one of the best string sets for electric guitars on the market.
19. The Gibson Vintage Reissue
The Gibson Vintage Reissue is made of 100% pure nickel, producing a uniquely warm, gentle tone along with incredible clarity. These are great for mellow sounds, and the nickel composition makes them easier for string bends. Other strings in this Gibson range are great as well. They each deliver a specific tone brilliantly.
20. The Rotosound Ultramag
This Rotosound set features increased magnetic properties which produce more power and volume than other strings, and last longer. The reduced friction allows for better tuning stability, while the corrosion-resistant properties keep them sounding great for longer than you’d expect.
Improving your child’s guitar skills so that they continue enjoying the gift of music is an experience that will last a lifetime. And you can enhance their musical journey through BYJU’S FutureSchool’s School of Music. We offer piano and guitar lessons that help children discover their passion for music. Our research-based curriculum provides a customized learning experience with 1:1 attention, fun projects, and live performance that boosts your child’s confidence, creativity, and technical skills.