Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Choice of classical guitar strings and technical issues connected with their use.
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eno
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Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by eno » Sat Apr 08, 2017 11:51 pm

I tried Bernabé strings on my spruce Bernabé guitar and did not like the result. From as much as I know about Bernabé strings they are a mix of rectified nylon and carbon so they sound very bright and "sandy". But Bernabé guitars tend to emphasize high pitches so the result is a double high-pitch bomb that makes a kind of annoying shallow sound with a lot of high pitch content and almost lacking any depth and roundness.

Anyone who owns a Bernabé had similar experience?
I guess Bernabé guitars need more mellow strings to balance it's tendency to emphasize high pitches, like traditional nylon. With carbon strings they sond too metallic and with recified nylon they sound too "sandy" and shallow.
What strings do you usually use on Bernabé guitars?
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967
Takamine C136S 1976
Mitsuru Tamura No.800 1972
Rokutaro Nakade 1967, 1962

es335
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by es335 » Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:14 am

According to their diameters the trebels are carbon strings, which means that they do sound quite harsh at the beginning and can need up to 2 weeks to develope their full tone potentional. So please be patient because the other thing I heard was, that there are no better strings for Bernabe guitars!? Played at least one Bernabe with them and really liked them though I'm in no way a fan of Carbon strings! :wink:

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kloeten
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by kloeten » Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:49 am

I have a spruce Bernabé as well. I liked the sweet sound of the Bernabé strings very much, especially the b string.
Nowadays I use D'Addarrio EJ46FF strings for this guitar.

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georgemarousi
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by georgemarousi » Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:55 pm

Hi Eno!

I just want to note that there are some differences between different permium models of Bernabe guitars ( i.e. I have the Especial, cedar ).

But appart from that there is also a common sound between Bernabe guitars, due to their construction, that of course preserves many things in common. My teacher has a 30 year-old Bernabe guitar, spruce, and stated that they sound (his vs mine) very much alike, just a small difference at the trebles; His own is a bit more brighth / but misses a bit of roundness in comparison at the as he described - well that's a general spruce vs cedar difference.

To my bernabe now, I haven't found any set as good as the Bernabe strings for this guitar - and that is by far! Moreover, this is one of the few guitars where i did not like the sound of the EJ45FF strings ( a set that fits perfect almost all my classical guitars ). Actually, I did not like any medium tension set ! - so I have assumed that there is a somewhat higher tension needed. ( note that bernabe strings are medium-high tension ). And also, I found the EJ46FF basses that I tried, too hard - so I did not even tried the high tension trebles of that set.. I also find the Bernabe basses, in comparison, much better in quality and feel.

Although I am very satisfied, I understand you may find Bernabe strings too bright as you have spruce, but, as mentioned in another post, give them sometime to settle in.. And a silly detail just in case, be sure that you do a good job with very fine sandpaper ( 8000 or 12000 ) on your nails.

Finally, my teacher uses (for a very long time) Hannabach, with non-carbon trebles. Don't know which set exactly - I think some of the popular ones. You might wanted to try some of those set(s) also as you have spruce top as well - If you do put an update here please! :)

Last but not least, since Bernabe strings are expensive, let me note that I keep the trebles for a very long time, changing only the basses i.e. every 1 or 2 months. You can even change the direction of the D string at it's midlife so to preserve a bit the marks from the frets, so finally the expense is not that much :)

Best regards,
George
--Classicals--
Paulino Bernabe Especial 2009
Ramirez 1A 1980
Alhambra Luthier india 2012
Juan Martinez nr 55 (the return @2014)
Yamaha cg 110 (as a kid @88)
--
student again since 2015, to my degree @..? - God bless!

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eno
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by eno » Mon Apr 10, 2017 3:21 pm

Thank you all for your input.
I ordered a bunch of different strings to try including Hannabach, and I'm going to give another try to Bernabe and let them settle.
I will write an update here but it will take me a couple of months for these experiments.
georgemarousi wrote:Last but not least, since Bernabe strings are expensive, let me note that I keep the trebles for a very long time, changing only the basses i.e. every 1 or 2 months. You can even change the direction of the D string at it's midlife so to preserve a bit the marks from the frets, so finally the expense is not that much :)
Can you get Bernabe basses separately? In US Zavaletas only sell the complete sets.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967
Takamine C136S 1976
Mitsuru Tamura No.800 1972
Rokutaro Nakade 1967, 1962

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georgemarousi
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by georgemarousi » Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:45 pm

eno wrote:Thank you all for your input.
I ordered a bunch of different strings to try including Hannabach, and I'm going to give another try to Bernabe and let them settle.
I will write an update here but it will take me a couple of months for these experiments.
georgemarousi wrote:Last but not least, since Bernabe strings are expensive, let me note that I keep the trebles for a very long time, changing only the basses i.e. every 1 or 2 months. You can even change the direction of the D string at it's midlife so to preserve a bit the marks from the frets, so finally the expense is not that much :)
Can you get Bernabe basses separately? In US Zavaletas only sell the complete sets.
Yes, here in Greece the Bernabe distributor sells the basses separately too. Hmm.. in case you cant get that, I think that for some quantity (i.e. $100 and up ) you can even order from Bernabe too !
--Classicals--
Paulino Bernabe Especial 2009
Ramirez 1A 1980
Alhambra Luthier india 2012
Juan Martinez nr 55 (the return @2014)
Yamaha cg 110 (as a kid @88)
--
student again since 2015, to my degree @..? - God bless!

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eno
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Location: Boston, USA

Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by eno » Wed May 10, 2017 4:18 pm

Just an update. I tried a bunch of strings (all nylon): two brands of La Bella, Luthier, Hannabach 815, Ramirez and Philippe Bosset on my Bernabe (and still have a few more brands to try). Basically I was looking to add some more depth and warmth to the native brightness and sweetness of the Bernabe spruce sound. I tried to be more patient with Bernabe strings and kept them for 2 weeks, they did improve but still sounded too bright, punchy and shallow to my taste. Definitely great sound empasizing the Bernabe qualities but not of my personal preference.

So:
- La Bella was pretty dull
- Luthier was weird, milky look and sound like nylegut strings for lute, so it sounded fancy but quite shallow
- Bosset sound was very nice, clear and nobel but rather cold and a bit metallic
- Hannabach was quite good, had a bit of everything - clarity, warmth, depth, little less bright

But the winner is:
Ramirez !!!
I was really impressed with the beauty of thier sound, they have everyting I want in one package with perfect balance: clarity, warmth, depth and brightness at the same time, plus beautiful overall tone. I'm totally swithching to Ramirez on all my guitars from now on.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967
Takamine C136S 1976
Mitsuru Tamura No.800 1972
Rokutaro Nakade 1967, 1962

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petermc61
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by petermc61 » Wed May 10, 2017 9:29 pm

The Ramirez strings are very rich with lush trebles. They sound like a great match for the spruce Bernabe. Don't necessarily assume they will work equally well on other guitars unless they have a similar tonal character to the Bernabe.

Jeffrey Armbruster
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by Jeffrey Armbruster » Wed May 10, 2017 9:36 pm

Out of curiosity--which tension Ramirez most closely matches the string tension of a D'addario ej45 set? And are they thicker in diameter.
Paul Weaver spruce 2014
Takamine C132S

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eno
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by eno » Wed May 10, 2017 11:25 pm

Ramirez MT E1 diam is 0.7mm ON the guitar.
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967
Takamine C136S 1976
Mitsuru Tamura No.800 1972
Rokutaro Nakade 1967, 1962

Jeffrey Armbruster
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Joined: Fri Dec 27, 2013 3:16 am
Location: Berkeley, California

Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by Jeffrey Armbruster » Thu May 11, 2017 12:06 am

Whoa I just looked at them on SBM--they're pricey! I'm not that good of a player; never mind.
Paul Weaver spruce 2014
Takamine C132S

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eno
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by eno » Thu May 11, 2017 12:32 am

Jeffrey Armbruster wrote:
Thu May 11, 2017 12:06 am
Whoa I just looked at them on SBM--they're pricey! I'm not that good of a player; never mind.
$16 for Ramirez
$32 for Bernabe, x2 compared to Ramirez

I change strings once a months, $16/month is almost nothing for a good sound
Paulino Bernabe 'India' 2001
Masaru Kohno No.6 1967
Takamine C136S 1976
Mitsuru Tamura No.800 1972
Rokutaro Nakade 1967, 1962

Jeffrey Armbruster
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Location: Berkeley, California

Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by Jeffrey Armbruster » Thu May 11, 2017 1:59 am

I change strings once a months, $16/month is almost nothing for a good sound.

True.
Paul Weaver spruce 2014
Takamine C132S

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guitarguy
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by guitarguy » Thu May 11, 2017 12:14 pm

I am a big fan of Ramirez strings as well. I used to play the HT (with carbon G) but have recently turned to MT. Apart from their great sound they also last pretty well.

Iain
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Re: Bernabé strings on Bernabé guitar?

Post by Iain » Wed May 17, 2017 8:31 pm

I tried the Bernabe strings on my Especial, I wasn't impressed.

Does anyone know who makes them?

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