Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Choice of classical guitar strings and technical issues connected with their use.
Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:53 pm

Rubino and Alchemia are two very good and bright Aquila strings, and both are worth a try if you want bright strings but not carbon. Both are thinner, higher in tension and brighter than nylon, but not as thin or as much tension as carbon strings. The Rubino has metal powder added to a nylgut base to increase the weight so that the trebles have a thinner diameter that makes them as dull sounding (the G in particular). The Alchemia is based on a plastic derived from sugar cane and is also thinner than nylon.

The Alchemia does have a squeaky sound when you slide your fingers along the length of the strings while changing positions. I have been playing these strings for 2 weeks now and the squeaky sound has gone away from the positions that I use the most, some squeaky sound still persists on the higher registers of the neck that I do not use as much.

Both are very good and bright string and I think that I might prefer the Alchemia slightly better than the Rubino because the sound seems to have more clarity. However, I am not sure of the clarity, because the two guitars that these strings are on, are a very different character. So I won't really know until I change strings and reverse the placement. These are the brightest strings that I have tried so far that are not carbon, and in my opinion have better overall qualities than carbon, worth a try. :wink:
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

MessyTendon
Amateur luthier
Posts: 1972
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:33 am

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by MessyTendon » Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:47 am

If they didn't squeak I would use them all the time. I think the tone is brilliant, not bright that is to say full and clear, also sustaining. Carbon is thin sounding.

But it's hard not to like the Rubino treble sets for three dollars. That's a nice set of trebles...the only problem is that certain strings take longer to intonate, but they do intonate well enough.

Pulling them and stretching helps.

The Alchemia to my ears sounded very much similar to the Bow Brand gut strings Rob Mckalliop seems to enjoy and use sometimes. I thought the Alchemia really delivered on gut like tone, more so than the nylguts.

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Wed Nov 14, 2018 4:36 am

Yes, they are more clear and sustaining than they are bright, brilliant may be the better word. The squeaking does go away with time, and the way I play does not bring out many squeaks. It seems to happen when I go very fast up or down the neck while lightly touching the strings with my fingers, but not fully depressing the strings on the frets. I also like the sound better than nylgut, more clear and bright/brilliant sounding. They make most nylon strings sound dull in comparison.

Three dollars for a set of Granato trebles (same treble strings that are on the Rubino set) is a very good price at Strings and Beyond. For $4.49 you can get your Aquila base set to go along with it. :)
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

MessyTendon
Amateur luthier
Posts: 1972
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:33 am

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by MessyTendon » Wed Nov 21, 2018 7:30 pm

If you are getting along hood with them keep em going...

Fyi i have sampled the rubino sugar cane strings...squeaky but amazingly better in the sustain department

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Fri Nov 23, 2018 8:12 am

MessyTendon wrote:
Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:47 am
If they didn't squeak I would use them all the time. I think the tone is brilliant, not bright that is to say full and clear, also sustaining. Carbon is thin sounding.

The Alchemia to my ears sounded very much similar to the Bow Brand gut strings Rob Mckalliop seems to enjoy and use sometimes. I thought the Alchemia really delivered on gut like tone, more so than the nylguts.
After playing them for some time now, I think as you do, that to my ears they have a sound that is more like gut strings than any other string that I have tried, a certain sweet tone. The squeaking seems to go away with play time, these may be my all time favorite strings. :)
Last edited by Leo on Wed Dec 05, 2018 12:51 am, edited 2 times in total.
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

MessyTendon
Amateur luthier
Posts: 1972
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:33 am

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by MessyTendon » Fri Nov 23, 2018 3:14 pm

Great Leo...I totally agree the sound is pretty much great. I just need to convince myself to live with the squeaking. Your telling me the noise does go away?

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Fri Nov 23, 2018 3:54 pm

Seems to with time, most of the squeaking went away for me within 2 weeks, and then slower after that. Great sound from these strings, I have listened to recordings from real gut strings, and they seem to have a certain amount of squeak, or sticky sound, with them too. Most of the squeaky sound went away after two weeks, but a sort of sticky sound sometimes happens, like gut strings.
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Sat Dec 29, 2018 3:36 am

Put the Alchemia on a second guitar, and they sound great on this guitar as well. These strings have the most clear sound of any string that I have tried. They are also very bright, somewhat like carbon strings, but without the metallic and thin sound that carbon has.

The only drawback is they do have a squeaky, sticky sound that goes away as you play them in. Aquila makes the most unique strings of any company that manufactures strings. These strings and the others by Aquila are worth a try. Alchemia are my current favorite. :wink:
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

Chuah Hui Hsien
Posts: 173
Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2018 7:27 am
Location: Penang, Malaysia

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Chuah Hui Hsien » Sat Dec 29, 2018 4:31 am

Leo,
How about Alchemia bass strings durability? Are the treles as slippery as carbon?
2017 Karel Dedain Spruce/Maple (Torres) 64cm
1998 Yamaha GD 10, Spruce/IRW 65cm
1988 Alhambra AL 8, Cedar/IRW 65cm

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Sat Dec 29, 2018 4:46 am

Chuah Hui Hsien wrote:
Sat Dec 29, 2018 4:31 am
Leo,
How about Alchemia bass strings durability? Are the treles as slippery as carbon?
Alchemia uses the same base strings that are found on the Alabastro set, these are very long lasting bass strings. These strings are also not slippery, they are more sticky, that is why you may get a sticky or squeaky sound that slowly goes away as you play them in. Higher in tension than regular nylon strings, but not as high as carbon.
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

MessyTendon
Amateur luthier
Posts: 1972
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:33 am

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by MessyTendon » Sat Dec 29, 2018 8:21 pm

Does that squeak really go away? If so how many weaks of playing? It's so annoying but I might try them again...they are the best sounding trebles ever made...but that squeaking problem is so annoying.

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Sat Dec 29, 2018 8:47 pm

MessyTendon wrote:
Sat Dec 29, 2018 8:21 pm
Does that squeak really go away? If so how many weaks of playing? It's so annoying but I might try them again...they are the best sounding trebles ever made...but that squeaking problem is so annoying.
I noticed that they were mostly gone after about a month of playing, for about 1/2 hour per day on the guitar that they are on. I rotate playing on 3 different guitars. Yes, I also think they are probably the best overall sounding trebles that I have ever played.
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:22 am

MessyTendon wrote:
Sat Dec 29, 2018 8:21 pm
Does that squeak really go away? If so how many weaks of playing? It's so annoying but I might try them again...they are the best sounding trebles ever made...but that squeaking problem is so annoying.
That is what my guitar instructor said. I took my only guitar out of three that currently has Alchemia strings in for a lesson today. My teacher noticed the strings right away and said "these are the best strings that he had ever heard". He also looked up information about where I got them on his cell phone. Worth a try. :wink:
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

MessyTendon
Amateur luthier
Posts: 1972
Joined: Fri Jun 19, 2015 1:33 am

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by MessyTendon » Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:30 pm

But your instructor didn't live with the squeaks...Strings and Beyond...best prices on Aquila...ten bucks a pack..they better last...

Right now I've got three sets of Rubino to work with. I like them but they just don't sound as nice as the Alchemia. Are yours still squeaking? how long have they been on?

Leo
Posts: 465
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:45 am
Location: Bay Area, California

Re: Aquila Rubino vs Alchemia treble strings

Post by Leo » Thu Jan 24, 2019 11:28 pm

MessyTendon wrote:
Thu Jan 24, 2019 6:30 pm
But your instructor didn't live with the squeaks...Strings and Beyond...best prices on Aquila...ten bucks a pack..they better last...

Right now I've got three sets of Rubino to work with. I like them but they just don't sound as nice as the Alchemia. Are yours still squeaking? how long have they been on?
Yes, to me the Rubino are nice strings, but they have more of a metalic sound like carbon strings, and they have a thinner sound, also like carbon strings. The Alchemia are very sweet and not as thin or metalic in sound as carbon or Rubino. To me, as close as you get to a gut string sound, without being a gut string.

My Alchemia have been on this current guitar for about 2 months, I did not notice the squeaks very much after about one month. The squeaks seem to happen when you are rapidly moving up and down the neck on the treble strings without totally lifting your fingers off the strings as you change position. I don't do this very often, so the squeaks don't bother me much, I guess it depends on your playing style.

My instructor did't notice the squeaks, until I showed him my fingers sliding up and down the neck rapidly while applying light pressure on the treble strings to get a squeaky sound. So the bottom line is it does not bother me, or my instructor very much, and this sound does fade away with time.
2012 Hippner, Spruce-birdseye maple
1985 Takamine C-132S
2002 Casa Montalvo, Spruce, Ziricote

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