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Ernie Ball Aluminum Bronze strings


zombywoof

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Anybody tried these yet?

 

I am not a fan of Ernie Ball strings and generally when I see graphs, charts, statements of scientific facts and whatever "proving" how good your stuff is I run the other way.

 

Then again, I will try anything once.

 

So just curious if the more adventurous out there has wandered into this territory.

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Anybody tried these yet?

 

 

 

 

 

Like you, I'm curious about the claims. Just had a set delivered from Strings and Beyond. Time to string up the L-00 ! Will let you know what I think in a few........

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I went out this morning to try and dig a set up but no luck. The local Fender dealer though said they would order me in some so I should be able to get them next week. Ironically this is the store where Andy McKee, who is hawking these strings, used to teach.

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I picked up a set a couple of days ago, and strung up my D-35 with them. As I'm approaching finals week I haven't been able to fully break them in and get a real feel for them. Initial thought is, they don't have that new string metallic jangle that 80/20's are known for. The low end is still there which is important to me, as that is what attracted me to that guitar. The low end seems to be pretty well focused, not loose and flabby at all. I don't know that I would say the low end is more prominent than it was prior. The guitar wasn't lacking high end prior, but the change seems to have enhanced the high ends a decent amount.

 

I'm still on the fence about whether to put them on the J-200 because I don't know that I need to put a string on that is going to make a guitar brighter, but I am interested to see what they will do to the low end.

 

Of course that's just my opinion. I could be wrong.

 

Interested to hear from the rest of you guys as you get em strung up

 

JRP

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I picked up a couple sets last week and tried the first on my OM-16 since it was in need of a string change. At first they sounded terrible...unbalanced, bright, but after about an hour, began to settle in. On the OM-16 they sounded warm, but with noticeably less volume/projection than the usual M540 I use. Overall, after playing it for a couple days, it was obvious the OM-16 didn't like them and not a good fit. Just no personality and life. I replaced them with M540 and the OM-16 was back with the usual good volume, balance and 'life' that was lacking with the EB Al/Br. I put that set on my F-130R and they're a better fit on the Guild. Not the best I've had on it, but good. One thing I've noticed on both guitars is a metallic 'twangy' sound from the D and high E strings in particular that I don't get with other strings, especially when capoed. I've yet to try the other set on my J-35 since the strings are still good and its sounding great. But I'll be curious to see how they sound on the J-35.

 

I've also ordered a set of Martin PB extra lights and medium lights to try on the J-35, so will probably try those first before the EBs.

 

DC

 

UPDATE: After a few days on the F-130R, I really didn't like the EB Al/Br as much as I thought. Just too metallic sounding on an already inherently bright guitar. I replaced them with Martin Marquis PB lights which I've used quite often on it with excellent tone, and there's quite a noticeable difference for the better. Fuller, more 'mature' and balanced tone than the EBs, and absolutely no metallic sound.

 

BTW, I put the Martin M530 PB x-lights on my J-35 a few days ago and am duly impressed. I wanted to wait a few days and play it as much as possible before commenting, and I'm very pleasantly surprised how really good these strings sound and respond for what I'm doing in DADGAD. Not QUITE the tonal depth of standard lights, but darn close with better sustain, no loss in volume/projection, and still good bass response with excellent balance. These strings produce better sustain when capoing on the higher frets (7-10) and it rings like a bell. Because of the inherently lower tension of the x-lights along with DADGAD tuning, I was afraid of buzzing and possibly a thin and twangy tone on the high unwound strings. But all is solid with no buzzing anywhere or twangy strings. It really sounds great....for what I do. They won't be everyone's cup of tea and probably not the best choice for bluesgrassers/predominantly hardcore flatpickers, but for Irish/Celtic stuff, strumming and mixing a lot of fingerstyle...really nice. It seems as if the J-35 has opened up with these strings and actually, I don't think it's sounded this good...again, for MY needs. But then my particular J-35 has an overall deeper tone and probably not as bright as many other players have complained about J-35s being. It's a special one! Now I'll be curious to see how the custom lights will sound.

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Hey Guys,

Just strung up my J-35 with the ernie ball aluminum bronze strings. Initially they sounded extremely bright and harsh...even more than new 80/20's. But after playing them in for a couple of hours they sound absolutely fantastic! I'm Definitely pleased with them [thumbup]

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Hey Guys,

Just strung up my J-35 with the ernie ball aluminum bronze strings. Initially they sounded extremely bright and harsh...even more than new 80/20's. But after playing them in for a couple of hours they sound absolutely fantastic! I'm Definitely pleased with them [thumbup]

 

 

I don't like the sound of any strings right out of the box so it would be the norm for me.

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I put a set on my D-28 this morning and so far I am not liking them. Very metallic to my ear and on the strum make the guitar sound like a tambourine. They are very clear and focused and you can drive the base without getting muddy....and they have a nice clear tone on single notes if not hit too hard. But driving the pick or hard strumming makes them pretty jangly to me. Sounds like a twelve string.....airy.

 

I got about two hours on them so far so I know it's not enough to form a conclusion, but at this point I think they represent an end point on a continuum of warm to bright going from 80/20s to PB to Alum. They are like exaggerated PBs to me.

 

I like well broken in 80/20s that have lost their sparkle and I was really digging rediscovering my D28 the last couple of weeks with those old 80/20s....these aluminum strings are farther down that direction I do not favor. Unless they die down quickly they won't be sticking around.

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I just put the Ernie Ball Aluminum Bronze on my J-15 So for very impressed with the sound, With just 5 minutes of play they sound really good to me. If they get any better which all other string I use are much better the next day, I will really be impressed.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Put 'em on my 00- Deep body, and I'm liking them! Clear- bell toned, almost too brilliant at first, (12/54) , nice bass response without over doing it....if they last longer than 3/4 weeks I'll be happy! Can't comment on a heavy attack because I don't use a pick....but there is no muddied sound when I bang out chords. The wound strings bend well and stay in tune...

 

 

 

 

Update....one week later and the tone is "remarkable" on this 00 deep body(Sitka/hog).....I'm getting shimmery tones and sounds that are almost "organ" sounding!

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Don't normally venture into string topics, but did check out the video that Krassi (Mr Gibs) put up in reply #3. Interesting; not just to hear Andy talk about the strings, but a fine taste of his playing (& just a little is enough for me). I was curious as to why no applause from those persons nearby, then it struck me- he's playing in a portable sound booth, which is something I've always felt guitar shows sorely needed. The general noise level of such events makes a/b'ing very difficult during the height of the show. Watching the cross section of the attendees was interesting, but not as interesting as at t = 7:22 when some "handler" comes behind Andy & gives Ernie Ball's boy the "cut" signal.

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I put a set of the Ernie Ball Aluminum Bronze strings on my J60 about 10-11 days ago. At first they were kind of brassy and bright sounding, but now they've settled-down and the brightness has pretty-much disappeared. For a couple days there I thought my J60 had turned into a Taylor (frightening, ain't it? Talk about a change of gender)...lol...sorry Taylor owners, just joking. Seriously, three days after I put them on I used the guitar at a gig and got some compliments on how good the guitar sounded. This was during the time I thought the strings were sounding brittle and bright. Anyway, I've been playing it quite-a-bit since I first put the strings on it and they really are sounding better to me. I've got two sets left and one of them is going on my J45, likely tomorrow or Wednesday. If the J45 seems to be less warm and mellow, I'll give them a couple weeks of steady use to see if the J45 tone returns. If not, I'll put some Martins on it. At the moment, the J60 has that sweet Gibson thump to it and I'm pleased with these strings. I bought them on a whim, because I saw a review of them on YouTube. So, at this time it's "so far so good." I think they're worth a try if you're looking-around for some different strings. [thumbup]

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On a tanget, I put Martin nickel strings on my J35 (retro lights) and my National (T Rice Monels) over the weekend. Two song circles and a test recording later, Im liking them better than PBs. Great punch and clarity. Especially like them on the National--those things put out so much sound that the PBS were just too much. With the Rice set -boom. If you like all the shimmery overtones and breathy detail you get from PBs, you proabably would not like them, but if you are looking for a big clear note, these might do it for you.

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