Types of Acoustic Guitars – Strings– Part III


We have already seen two ways in which acoustic guitars can be classified – by tonewood and by shape: http://guitarlessonssingapore.com/guitar-lessons-types-acoustic-guitars-tonewood-part/. There is a third way in which guitars can be classified as well – by the type of strings used. There are two types of strings used in guitars: nylon and steel. Depending on the various factors under consideration, they both have their pros and cons. However, guitar lessons in Singapore can help you master both types.

Advantages of steel strings

  • Steel stringed guitars are by far the more popular because much of the popular music is played on them. They are very suitable for rock and pop, as well as for other high volume genres.
  • Steel strings have a better sound and volume than nylon strings. The steel strings produce a louder and sharper tone, and are thus better suited to high-energy music genres.
  • Steel stringed guitars tend to require fewer tuning adjustments because the strings are wound tighter. These strings also have a higher resistance to heat, which means longer performances.
  • Steel stringed guitars also generally have a longer neck, which makes it excellent for solo performances and fretting.

Advantages of nylon strings

  • Guitars with nylon strings are perfect for musical genres such as jazz, country, and Latin music. If you are interested in the more romantic and mellow music genres, then nylon stringed guitar is perfect for you!
  • The nylon stringed guitars produce a gentle and mellow sound and are better suited to melodious and romantic musical genres.
  • If you are the kind of guitarist who doesn’t want to risk blisters and callouses on your fingers, then nylon strings are good for you. Because the strings are soft, they don’t hurt you much while playing.
  • Nylon stringed guitars tend to have smaller bodies. This can be useful for people who are smaller, shorter, or don’t have the strength to carry a bigger guitar. It can also be an advantage while travelling.

Choosing steel or nylon strings

  • You need to make sure that your choice is primarily based on the kind of music you want to play. As already mentioned above, steel strings are good for high energy music such as pop or rock, while nylon strings are good for melodious music such as jazz.
  • Understand that both types of strings are not interchangeable in the same guitar. If you attempt to put steel strings on a guitar built for nylon strings and vice versa, the guitar can get damaged.
  • While nylon strings are easier on the fingers and might thus attract beginners, it should not be a primary criterion of choice. Both steel and nylon strings can make your fingers a little sore in the beginning, but with nylon, the pain is less.
  • When you first purchase a new guitar, the strings needs to be adjusted. Whether steel or nylon, you need to make sure that the guitar is properly adjusted for optimum playability.

Ultimately, depending on your own requirements, you will have to take a chance between the two types of strings. There are good and bad things about both choices. It all depends on what you as a musician require. For more information on acoustic guitar lessons, refer to http://guitarlessonssingapore.com/.