Budget Strings?

Discussion in 'Gear & Equipment' started by AkiraSpectrum, Sep 10, 2018.

  1. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    In Canada we have a music store chain called Long & McQuade, our own version of a Guitar Center, lol. Anyways, they have their own branded guitar and bass strings which are much cheaper than other options. I was told that Dunlop makes the strings; I’m not sure if they are similar spec to Dunlop’s regular offerings or if they’re different.

    As a guitarist that owns a bass I didn’t want to pay $33 for Ernie Ball or D’addario 5 string sets so I went with the L&M brand for $20 (CDN). I don’t have much experience with bass strings but they seem to work well, both staging in tune and being relatively bright and bouncy sounding. They seem to last just as long as other brand strings, so these will be my go-to for bass since they are so much cheaper and perform just as well as anything else.

    More recently I took the chance on some guitar strings 10-46 for $4.20 CDN (EB is $6.50 and D’addario are $7.10). So far I am pleasantly suprurpised. They feel softer than D’addario plain and sound, and a little softer on the treble strings than EB. The wound strings feel different than both EB and D’addario but not in a bad way. The biggest positive I’ve discovered is that they have had the quickest break in time I’ve experienced, probably even better than NYXLs. They hold tune extremely well. If you like bright strings then these are for you, very bright and tight sounding. Since these seem brighter and less bassy than most strings I’ve played they result in fantastic string clarity.
    I haven’t had these on long enough to speak to their durability but for the price you can’t go wrong. I think I will stick to D’addario 10-46 for my ESP EII Mystique but will probably use these L&M strings on my Godin (backup guitar for E and Drop D).

    Do you have any experience with budget strings? Please share!
     
  2. budda

    budda Guiterrorizer Contributor

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    I know they exist but I've never felt the need to try them.
     
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  3. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Makes sense. I was just curious and was pleasantly surprised after taking the chance on them. Without question, for me, I think the benefit of these strings is the following: #1 Good strings for significantly cheaper than your typical brands for regular use (assuming they have the gauges you use) and/or #2 Great for guitars you want to put fresh strings on but maybe don't use very often.
     
  4. kindsage

    kindsage SS.org Regular

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    I’m really picky about gauges so i always go to StringJoy.

    It’s the cheapest way to get a fully custom set for a baritone that I’ve found.
     
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  5. rokket2005

    rokket2005 SS.org Regular

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    Before I had a nice enough bass to care about bass strings I bought a couple packs of guitar center branded strings they were closing out. I think they were like $5 a pack. They sounded terrible and were pretty dead within a week. They also weren't on the nicest bass, but I tend to stick with elixirs on pretty much everything now as the bass I've had the longest at this point has had a set on for like 4 years and the strings still sound good. Totally worth the extra $15-20 for me.
     
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  6. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    There are only a handful of string manufacturers in North America, almost all store brand strings are made by them. It's more expensive to formulate a special "cheap" string to produce, so you wind up getting the same product.

    That said, strings should be purchased in bulk. The savings are significant (up to 40% depending on brand and type), they're easy to store and you know you'll need more eventually.
     
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  7. NateFalcon

    NateFalcon Party’s over

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    I also go through Stringjoy...but hey, if they sound and play good that’s all that matters -I might give them a try
     
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  8. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Cool, I don't have any experience with StringJoy, I'll have to check out their stuff.

    Interesting. 4 years for strings? WOW!
     
  9. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Yeah i'll have to check out to see what StringJoy is about. Yeah, if you live in Canada the L&M strings are definitely worth trying out, they seem like good strings on the cheap, especially if you like bright strings. Without question, these are a must have for me for bass strings.

    Yeah, this is what I figured, that they are likely the same spec/make as regular Dunlop strings--which I haven't tried yet actually, but now I probably don't need to, lol. Although I'm curious as to if they are Dunlop's regular Nickel strings or their "Super Brights." If they aren't their Super Brights I'd be shocked to see how bright those strings would be, considering these are by far the brightest nickel-plated strings I've played.

    Are store-brand budget strings fairly popular in the USA?
     
  10. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Yeah i'll have to check out to see what StringJoy is about. Yeah, if you live in Canada the L&M strings are definitely worth trying out, they seem like good strings on the cheap, especially if you like bright strings. Without question, these are a must have for me for bass strings.

    Yeah, this is what I figured, that they are likely the same spec/make as regular Dunlop strings--which I haven't tried yet actually, but now I probably don't need to, lol. Although I'm curious as to if they are Dunlop's regular Nickel strings or their "Super Brights." If they aren't their Super Brights I'd be shocked to see how bright those strings would be, considering these are by far the brightest nickel-plated strings I've played.

    Are store-brand budget strings fairly popular in the USA?
     
  11. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Kind of. Just about all the large retailers have offered them at some point.
     
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  12. op1e

    op1e Blood_Lust:Unlimited

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    I'm going with Labella now. $5.59 for an 11-70 7 string pack. Good gauges for the low B finally, not .059 or .064. Got a 55-120 bass 4 set for drop C for $18. They seem to take a good 4-6 weeks before they start getting dead. I play twice a week and don't have a lot of oils in my hands from printing so long lol.
     
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  13. rexbinary

    rexbinary MOD King

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  14. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    looking forward to your review!
     
  15. axxessdenied

    axxessdenied Arium Addict

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    I use elixirs now. Been using daddario for ages. But I have multiple guitars and need strings to not die if I don't play a guitar for a couple weeks. Doing the math even with paying the premium considering how much longer they last I think they are the best bang for the buck.
     
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  16. I play music

    I play music SS.org Regular

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    As long as I don't need special gauges for very low tuning I also tend to buy just the cheapest string set that fits more or less the gauges I want. Last time the result was Framus strings and they honestly feel as good to me as any of the more expensive brands like Daddario or Ernie Ball.
    However, I have no idea if Framus/Warwick have their own string production or they sell some other brand's strings under their name. Not that it's very important as long as they are good and affordably priced.
     
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  17. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Cool. I have only played Elixir acoustic strings. They were cool and I liked a lot of things about them (reduced string noise, long life, etc) but I noticed that the coating would chip off sometimes and I wasn’t a big fan of that.

    Cool. I used to buy Godin strings when I first started playing guitar because they were actually just D’addario strings, and the one store I would frequent had them on for $1 cheaper than actual D’addario strings, lol. Sadly that store ended up moving out of the city I was in.
     
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  18. axxessdenied

    axxessdenied Arium Addict

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    Yeah that was my experience with elixirs a while ago. I have the optiweb and nanowebs on and none of them have the coating coming off weird yet.
     
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