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Best Classical Guitar Strings for The Best Playability 

 May 27, 2021

By  Zen Chung

The choice of the best classical guitar strings is individual, and it highly depends on the type of instrument, playing style, genre, and personal choice. Using the right type of guitar strings is crucial to every guitarist because it can alter the feel and tone of your sound. After all, the string manufacturers tweak their classical strings to achieve specific tensions and tonalities. Before starting on your shopping, keep in mind that strings are a matter of personal preference, and the sound they produce can be affected by the player, guitar, and even the performance space.

But as always, the hardest part is choosing the best product among the many available in the market. In the following review, we examined some of the best classical guitar strings highly sought after on the market based on their quality. All of the products stated are worth your consideration and have their pros and cons, and below, we have included a detailed buying guide to help you make an informed decision.

1. D'Addario EJ46

D'Addario Pro-Arte Nylon Classical Guitar Strings, Hard Tension (EJ46)
  • THE CHOICE OF NYLON STRING PLAYERS– The world’s most popular choice for...
  • LASER SELECTED TREBLES – Each nylon treble within a Pro-Arte set is laser...
  • NYLON CORE BASSES – Pro-Arte strings use a silver-plated copper winding on a...
  • STRING GAUGES – The gauges in this classical string set include: Trebles...
  • MADE IN THE USA – D’Addario leverages centuries of string-making experience...
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D'Addario EJ46 Pro-Arte is a hard tension guitar string that differs from the EJ45 because they contain bass strings composite polymer cores that are silver plated. This string set comes with two G string options, one is a traditional Pro-Arte, and the other optional one is made from core composite used in the bass strings that deliver a brighter sound which is quite different from the traditional sound.

This popular D'Addario string set features silver-plated wound bass strings and a clear nylon treble that delivers a great sustain, punch, and projection and maintains a consistent intonation. Combining the silver-plated copper wound composite bass and clear nylon treble strings gives musicians a full range of powerful, long-lasting, and warm tones suitable for any performance, whether live or in a studio.

Pros

  • It comes with G string options.
  • Rich tones compared to normal tension.
  • Laser measured accuracy.
  • Suitable for string longevity or a loud classical performance.
  • Corrosion-resistant packaging.
  • Value for your money.

Cons

  • This type of string might lose its tone often and calls for persistent tuning.

2. D'Addario EJ45 Pro-Arte Nylon

Sale
D'Addario Pro-Arte Nylon Classical Guitar Strings, Normal Tension (EJ45)
  • D'Addario Pro-Arte nylon string set for classical guitar combines high quality...
  • LASER SELECTED TREBLES - Each nylon treble within a Pro-Arte set is laser...
  • NYLON CORE BASSES - Pro-Arte strings use a silverplated copper winding on a...
  • STRING GAUGES - The gauges in this classical string set include: Trebles .0280,...
  • MADE IN THE USA - D'Addario leverages centuries of string-making experience and...

D'Addario EJ45 is one of the most recommended classical strings, which offers normal tension and comfortable resistance to suit every genre and style. Each string goes through a laser measuring process, and the wound bass is in a high-quality control level to ensure the string's intonation is perfect. The bass strings compose multi-filament nylon bound to a silver-plated copper that gives out a warm and blended sound whenever they ring, and thanks to the silver-plated copper, the bass strings will sound a little louder and heavier than nylon treble strings.

The D'Addario Pro Arte nylon classical guitar strings deliver classical acoustic tones with great intonation and provide a fully ranged balanced feel and tone. The E, B, G strings come in an anti-oxidant bag, and while the normal strings lack volume for a huge crowd, they will deliver for an intimate performance.

Pros

  • Normal-tension resulting in a balance playability.
  • Laser sorted.
  • Suitable for students or beginners thanks to the affordable price point.
  • Durability.
  • High-quality.

Cons

  • The tuning call for persistent tuning until the new set of strings get used to your instrument.

3. Savarez 500CJ Corum Cristal Classical Guitar Strings

Savarez Classical Guitar Strings (500CJ)
  • Cristal Corium series high tension cristal clear nylon trebles, Corium silver...
  • And Corium wound basses
  • The set Corium pry is made of: rectified nylon trebles (with new crystal...
  • And CORUM wound basses
  • The set CORUM PR is made of: rectified nylon trebles (with NEW CRISTAL quality)

Savarez Corum New Cristal 500CJ is a high tension string set that features Cristal Nylon trebles and a Corum Polished silver-wound bass designed with proprietary materials. These nylon string materials deliver a focused and clear sound is intended for musicians on a budget looking for a source of a higher fidelity of sound.

Savarez 500CJ Corum is one of the best classical guitar strings that give off a secure volume and bass ring thanks to the proprietary materials that guarantee durability. Additionally, because the nylon strings are meant for the classical guitar, they are very articulate and hardly sound thin with much warmth compared to other brands. However, like all nylon strings, they need a longer period to break in than steel strings.

Pros

  • Offers excellent playability.
  • Flexible feel as well as a quick response.
  • Banaced string to string tension.
  • Durability as it has several levels of protection.
  • Best classical guitar strings for anyone looking for a traditional nylon strings sound.

Cons

  • The high tension strings require carefully tying because improper tying could result in slippage and instability.

4. Savarez 540R Alliance

Savarez 540R Classical Guitar Strings Normal Tension
  • Alliance Series
  • Normal tension
  • Carbon trebles, silver Plated wound basses
  • The normal-tension 540R sets are made up from kgf alliance plain composite...
  • The normal-tension 540R sets are made up from KF ALLIANCE plain composite...

Savarez 540R Alliance is a string set that features carbon composite nylon treble strings with silver-plated wound bass strings, and they are brighter to gut strings in terms of their balance and projection. The nylon string guitar is preferred by Flamenco musicians who like a strong attack. Still, it also is a favorite to any player who prefers a snappy, brassy-like, or metallic attack to their sound.

Professional players and casual players can use the Savarez Alliance on top of coming from a string-making company because they also make perfect choices for both electric and acoustic guitar strings. However, it has stiff nylon strings that reduce fret buzzes and error sounds because of the high tension, making them suitable for beginners and experienced players. All in all, the guitar string is a tie end that provides a good resistance amount under your fingers.

Pros

  • High-quality materials that make the carbon strings extremely durable.
  • Produce excellent sounds.
  • The classical strings can be sued on an acoustic guitar or an electric guitar.
  • Thanks to long-term oxidization, the classical strings have a minimal chance of becoming darker.

Cons

  • The E string can be quite weak if not properly tuned.

5. Ernie Ball Earthwood Folk

Sale
Ernie Ball Earthwood Folk Nylon Ball End Set, Clear and Gold
  • Medium Tension
  • 80/20 Bronze Wrap wire
  • For Classical guitars

Ernie Ball Earthwood Folk is one of the best strings in the market, with a typical feel and tone offering medium tension. They are suitable for players who prefer converting the normal folk's guitar to the nylon classic style guitar featuring ball-end strings making them an easy solution and more convenient to string. The nylon strings are made from 80/20 bronze, sometimes called brass, and therefore it results in brighter strings and features three traditional nylon treble strings for your guitar.

Ernie Ball is the right classical guitar strings for players to play using steel strings like an acoustic guitar. They deliver a more familiar tone and are looking to try the nylon classical guitar strings. The coated strings have a warm tone compared to other brands, but it may take a while before the strings settle because of the material used in the nylon strings. All in all, these nylon string sets will do your classical instrument justice and will provide long sustained crisp sounds with a warm tone.

Pros

  • Produces a balanced and unique sound.
  • Averagely priced.
  • High quality.
  • Medium tension strings.
  • Easy to string them thanks to the ball-end.
  • Nuance clarity.

Cons

  • The ball end might not be effective for some players.

Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Classical Guitar String

1. Material

Classical guitar strings are made using various materials and have multi-filament nylon core wrapped up with various metal winding materials. The personal quality of sound and the longevity of the strings depending on the type of material that has been used to create them.

The most popular winding options include silver plating, brass, and bronze for the bass strings, while Carbon fiber, clear nylon, black nylon, titanium, composite, and rectified nylon make treble strings. Also, traditional gut strings are available in the market for whoever is seeking the traditional sound, but they are more expensive than the highest quality nylon strings. However, they are worth trying if you are looking to achieve a different sound from the players on the scene.

2. String Gauge

The gauge is your string's diameter or thickness, and in a classical guitar, it is measured as tension and defined as high medium or low tension. The lighter string gauges start at .010 of an inch, while the heavy gauges go up to .059. In.

The light tension gauges are ideal for small or light guitars, while the heavy gauges are more suited for large and stronger guitars. The higher the tension in your guitar strings, the more volume and punch your guitar will produce, and this high volume and punch will be due to the great effort needed to finger the notes.

High tension strings are more suitable for pros or experienced players or generally with exceptional grip strength or strong hands. However, for people with small and weaker hands or beginners, they should choose low tension strings and then upgrade as they improve their grip to medium tension and then use high tension strings.

3. Longevity

The longevity of the best classical guitar strings is a debatable and subjective point as when any guitar strings lose their tone, the notes don't run true and cannot be defined. The sound becomes dull, the clarity of the note is not specific, and the sustain is compromised. However, for someone who plays their instrument once in a while, their guitar strings will last longer than someone who plays several times a day. That being said, for a daily player, the classical guitar strings will need replacement more often.

4. Price

Price is one of the biggest considerations when purchasing guitar strings for most people, and sometimes people compromise the longevity and the tone to get the cheapest option available. The cost of the strings can be quite high, with some players changing their strings every two weeks, but the best solution is to do your research well.

With plenty of options in the market, you should get high-quality strings that are within your budget and can take up about 60 to 80 hours of playing before they can lose their tone. Also, you can check from reviews how strings at every price range deliver their playing and then decide on the choice of the best classical guitar strings.

5. String Tension

The string tension is crucial as much as the gauge, and the nylon guitar strings for classical guitars are also rated according to the tension. The tension usually varies, just like in the string gauge, and they produce different results.

High-tension classical guitar strings are quite loud and have more attacks, and they put a lot of tension on the guitar and make fretting difficult to play. On the other hand, the low tension strings put less force on the guitar and produce less volume but are easy to use in fretting and bending. The medium tension is a blend of characteristics from both strings, high tension and low tension, and ensures a player gets the maximum playing flexibility.

6. Ball End Strings vs. Tie-Ins Strings

Traditionally, all classical guitar strings were tied to the guitar bridge, but some models have ball-ends these days. For beginners or students, models with ball ends may be easier to install. At the same time, the tie-ins are the best options for intermediate or experienced players or anyone who understands the tying of the guitar strings process.

Ball end strings may sound as good as tie-ins, and you might not notice any difference between the two so long as you get your strings from a reputable manufacturer.

7. Availability

Checking for how available the guitar strings brand will be is very important because it would be unfortunate to replace your strings and not find the brand in stock. Therefore, to be safe, stick to the brands that are already established and have a track record to avoid not getting your choice of classical guitar strings in stock. Some brands like the ones we have mentioned above are good options because they have a long history and are favored by the best classical guitarists.

Frequently Asked Questions on the Nylon Classical Guitar Strings

1. What is the difference between hard tension and normal tension classical guitar strings?

The difference is hard tension strings may be louder than the normal tension strings, and they are said to be more responsive to techniques like vibrato and finger strike power. Additionally, there is a wider range of tones between ponticello and dolce with normal-tension strings, which is a lot compared to hard tension. The key thing is to find guitar strings that are compatible with your technique because there's a slight difference between the normal tension and hard tension strings.

2. How long do classical guitar strings take to settle?

The classical guitar strings take about 1 to 2 hours of constant playing to break in and settle and allow them to stay in tune stabilized. Depending on the usage, the strings may take about three to seven days to lose the tiny and bright sound usually associated with new nylon guitar strings.

Zen Chung


I'm Zen Chung, a piano and violin teacher based out of Plano, Texas. I started this blog because my students (and their parents) kept asking about the best musical instruments to buy online. Look no further I'm here to save the day! 

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