• We would like to remind our members that this is a privately owned, run and supported forum. You are here at the invitation and discretion of the owners. As such, rules and standards of conduct will be applied that help keep this forum functioning as the owners desire. These include, but are not limited to, removing content and even access to the forum.

    Please give yourself a refresher on the forum rules you agreed to follow when you signed up.

String Choice: Ernie Ball or D'addario?

Greg Ferguson

Fractal Fanatic
Now that you mention kinks and GHS. I once bought 3 packs of GHS Gilmour Signature for the Strat, and all them had rusted spots. The local shop didn't accept a return, but I wrote to GHS and they kindly sent me a replacement
I saw that also, and that was the final straw.

Years ago we'd buy Ernie Ball Slinkies, and they'd last about a week, then start rusting. But, back then, we were playing, practicing and storing our guitars in buildings that used evaporative cooling, which might have contributed to the problem.

Greg Ferguson

Fractal Fanatic
Then I discovered the coated elixirs, used them for a few years, saved a ton of money as instead of monthly changes it was every 6 months. Hell I have one guitar that I rarely play still sporting elixirs from 7 years ago, just took out of case, sounds and feels like new strings still.
however, got tired of the plastic shavings build up in my floyd rose and maybe just me but I can hear "plastic" in my tone.... sounds weird but I notice it compared to non-coated, so decided to return to non-coated. Elixirs are very good strings though.

After that, I tried a few brands, but stuck with NYXL for the last 5 years. They are quite durable and I get about 3 months out of them playing 2-3 hours a day,
Yes, brand new the coated Elixers sounded a little darker than a regular string, but they'd hold their tone a lot longer so I felt they were a good deal.

My favorites are the NYXL so far. I have stacks of them in my closet... those 3-packs and bundles are so convenient. :)

The Raven

Another D'Addario NYXL user here, though recently I picked up a few sets of the XTs to try on my electrics. Tried to XTs on an acoustic and really like them, now I'm looking to install the even newer XS strings on the same guitar.

I did recently try a set of regular Ernie Ball strings though after years of exclusively using D'Addario and I gotta say, I liked them a lot. Definitely want to try out the Paradigm strings myself now.

Downside of Ernie Ball for me, at least with the Paradigms, is they don't currently offer as much variety in terms of gauges as D'Addario. They did greatly expand the options for regular Slinky's though, which is cool.


Strings and Beyond sent me an email special to try the XL's for 12.99 with free shipping. Normally you have to spend $35 to get the free shipping, so I got a set of the electrics coming.


Strings and Beyond sent me an email special to try the XL's for 12.99 with free shipping. Normally you have to spend $35 to get the free shipping, so I got a set of the electrics coming.
One set of D'Addario XLs for $13? That's honestly the most I've ever seen XLs sold for. A 3-pack is $14 on Amazon.

Amazon product

Joe Bfstplk

Used EB 9-46 hybrid slinkies (#2222) since the '90s. Discovered Stringjoy's 9-46 set and really like them. They have a super smooth, polished feel on the plain strings, and seem to last a long time. A couple strings' gauges are a bit different, but the balance is great....

Dr. Faustus

I was a DR player for decades, then about 3-4 years ago they started having serious QC issues, never got straightened out to my knowledge.
In an attempt to replace my beloved DRs, I tried every string out there. Wound up settling on NYXL, they sound and last as good as the DRs did (might even last a tad bit longer), at twice the cost they aren't cheap, but I can't stand crappy strings, and they are certainly not crappy.
I'm still playing JH-10s. I've been using them since the mid-90s and have never considered switching. I just took delivery of another 12 packs today.

What should I be looking for in terms of QC issues, please?
Top Bottom