Hello to all,
I'm new on this board and I'm playing Jazz on a classical guitar (just vocals+guitar+percussion, no bass). Swing forces me to some techniques, which inevitably produce squeaking, otherwise there's no groove (full barrée slidings, walking bass + chords etc.).
My favorite strings until then were (low-cost) D'A EXP46-clones by T..., after having tested several other types of strings (e.g. Savarez & Pyramid carbon strings and several Nylons). I once bought D'A EJ51 "recording strings" which were the only strings, that broke (!),
When I was surfing the web for better "Low-noise" strings for recording, I stumbled on GHS 2500, which are nickel wound / compressed roundwound. GHS classical strings are nearly unknown in Germany, so you'll never find it in a local shop. Some guitarists might think of nickel as blasphemy, but for me, it's a challenge to test it. And I'm very interested, what classical or flamenco guitarists say.
So let's start my personal impressions:
The bag is transparent PVC, but not vacuum sealed, the strings are in single paper bags. The first indication of being US-made: there is a warning notice on the back of every pack "String may unwind when opened". No tension indication at the package, but the GHS website says, it's hard tension.
are a little bit thinner than usual silver coated strings, the surface is less brilliant, very little yellow and it feels smoother than silver strings. When winding it up, the E is sort of balky, A and D are better to handle. The basses are obviously stiffer than silver strings. The trebles are very normal nylons.
: when in tune, the strings feel like a regular set of strings. The stiffness seems to be compensated by the lower diameter. The set feels like usual hard tension strings, as e.g. EXP46. Not as hard as Pyramid's Super Classic Hart, but harder than usual medium tension strings. They even allow string bending easily, because they do not tend to roll away. And: the fingers don't get stained.
Well, for me, it's the best sound, I've ever played. The basses are not as super-brilliant as e.g. Savarez but nevertheless the sound contains "wire" (you can say that in English?). The "roundwound sound" is in a lower frequency spectrum than e.g. Savarez. Maybe around 2 kHz instead of 4-5. This makes the string sound very assertive when playing together with other instruments/vocals. The low basses are present enough, but not overemphasized. The treble strings are very normal nylons. They are not better or worse than good standard strings. Very good for Jazz/Latin.
The finger noises are reduced, but not totally gone. The remaining noises sound very naturally and do not disturb, even on recordings. It's a very good compromise between roundwound-sound and low noise.
GHS 2500 stay in tune very quickly and they keep it. Far better than most carbon strings and the EXP-clones.
As a matter of fact, a set of GHS 2500 keeps its brilliance for more than 50 intense playing hours. I estimate to last them nearly twice the time of my formerly favorised (coated) EXP46-clones. I'm playing very much on the bass strings (walking bass lines, additional intermediate licks etc.), maybe lots more than in classical music, so it's possible, that classical players use the strings even longer. I've recently wound up the 3rd set after 7-8 months, because I had the impression that the trebles (not the basses) loose their brilliance.
GHS asserts that compressed roundwounds preserve your fingernails. I cannot confirm, because I never had problems with that, but, when playing 2-3 hours with silver strings, my thumb will hurt at the spot, where I hit the strings. GHS 2500's are smoother, it hurts less
GHS 2500 or 2510 (wound G) might be a good choice as long as your guitar sounds well-balanced and you do not need additional super-brilliance or extra-low basses and you want to avoid accidental squeaking and/or you're simply looking for strings that last longer.
I've tested it on a Hanika SF 59 Custom (Spruce top, Ziricote Body, Cutaway. On Stage: L.R.Baggs Piezo+L.R.Baggs Venue D.I.)
What experiences do you have?
Does anybody play classical music on GHS 2500 - or Folk or even Flamenco?