string change, tone change

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by archeetart, Jun 27, 2020.

  1. archeetart

    archeetart New Member!

    Age:
    42
    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2020
    Location:
    dfw, texas
    stratocaster player hss. just had the guitar setup and strings changed as part of it. i'm new to playing, and had started paying attention to some minor fret buzzing and just came to the conclusion that the guitar needed to be setup. as part of the setup they brought the action down, lowered the tremelo (tightened the claw screws, it was high), re-strung and got the radius of the strings. honestly, don't know if they did a good job or i just got used to the from factory setup i had for the last 4 months. however the two most noticeable things that have come up is the buzzing seems worse (which maybe just raise the action a little) but the tone and feel of the guitar is different. i went from the stock fender 9s (believe they are the 250L) to ernie ball super slinky 9s. so gauge is the same between the strings, but the tone and sound are significant. did i like a sound that wasn't proper with the fenders, do the super slinky's suck, did i just get a bum set of strings?

    guess the question is, any thoughts and i guess, do the super slinkys suck
     
  2. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Jaguar Convert Strat-Talk Supporter

    Messages:
    10,559
    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    Pawnee, Indiana
    How old were the strings before the change? Changing from old strings to new ones, brightens up the sound significantly.

    Ernie ball slinkys are good enough for hundreds of big name rock n rollers and other great players.. they’re not a joke, and there’s a reason they’re some of the more popular strings (outside of being cheaply priced.)

    never had a single problem with slinkys of any gauge. Never could tell a whole lot of difference between fender 9s, Slinky 9s, musicians gear 9s, DR 9s, Daddario 9s.. all of them do the trick well enough
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2020
  3. StummerJoe

    StummerJoe Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    47
    Messages:
    596
    Joined:
    May 10, 2020
    Location:
    Washington
    You shouldn't have increased buzzing after a set up. That is inexcusable in my book. Take it back ASAP and point out the problem as soon as you can before they get shutdown due to the virus again. They should honor their work, get it right, and do it for free.

    As far as the strings go, new strings always sound brighter regardless of brand. I have been using EB Regular Slinky nickel wound 10-46 for over three decades on my personal guitars. I have been on the building side and/or teching for over 20 years and had a chance to try all kinds of different strings.

    Ernie Ball makes a legit product as do a lot of other string manufacturers.
     
    3bolt79, tinkertoy and nickmsmith like this.
  4. Diamond D

    Diamond D Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    54
    Messages:
    48
    Joined:
    May 11, 2020
    Location:
    In Orbit
    Totally agree with Strummer Joe. Brand won't change your tone but more buzzing will. If your action was lowered enough to cause more buzzing then it will choke out your tone. Take it back.
     
    3bolt79 likes this.
  5. StummerJoe

    StummerJoe Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    47
    Messages:
    596
    Joined:
    May 10, 2020
    Location:
    Washington
    Well...that's not exactly what I meant. Different alloys used by different brands will make a difference in tone, regardless of how slight.
    I can hear a big difference between steel wrapped and nickel wrapped strings. GHS Boomers have a different sound to me as well as D'Addario, DR, John Pearce(excellent strings), etc...from EB.
    What I meant is a new set always sounds brighter no matter which brand you use after changing from old strings. Fresh EB's sound brighter than old EB's for example.

    I think I'm saying what I wanted to...;)
     
  6. MGW-AB

    MGW-AB Strat-Talk Member

    Age:
    60
    Messages:
    57
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2020
    Location:
    Canada
    Strummer beat me to it. Nickel plated steel does in fact sound different than solid nickel. Core wires can have an affect as well; round v. hex.

    As to the setup, some people feel a certain amount of buzzing is normal and just comes with the territory. In my world no amount of fret buzz is acceptable. If it were me I would not take the guitar back to the tech demanding a better setup. That tech has demonstrated his/her abilities and understanding of guitar setup. They would never touch my guitar ever again. If I am paying for a service the service provider gets one chance to earn my repeat business ... just like it is in everywhere else in life. You only get one chance to make a good first impression. I would forget that hack, chock it up to experience, count my blessings that they didn't do any harm to the guitar and then find a real guitar tech who knows what they're doing.
     
    dirocyn likes this.
  7. archeetart

    archeetart New Member!

    Age:
    42
    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2020
    Location:
    dfw, texas
    i bought the guitar new in february, so it only had 4 months of play and by play, a 40 year old going though a midlife crisis and deciding to learn how to play guitar, playing.

    the eb's just feel a lot different than the fender stock did. they almost feel like they are a smaller gauge. don't know if maybe there was an issue and my strat mistakenly had 10s.

    i wanted to find somewhere not guitar center. maybe this wasn't the place to go. since originally posting this last night i've cut myself on one of the guitar string ends that was left a little long from the restring. i guess this is a place that will not get my business again.
     
    3bolt79 likes this.
  8. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Grand Master Curmudgeon Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    61
    Messages:
    34,788
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    I found Ernie Ball Super Slinkies like playing rubber bands. They kept stretching until they broke. Fenders feel much harder and precise.
     
    rafasounds, 3bolt79 and Stonetone like this.
  9. kurher

    kurher Strat-Talker

    Messages:
    278
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2017
    Location:
    3rd Stone from the Sun
    Indeed, Ernie Balls have less tension than most other brands (same gauge).
     
    3bolt79 likes this.
  10. Hanson

    Hanson Strat-Talker

    Age:
    58
    Messages:
    487
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2016
    Location:
    Mesquite, Texas
    I’ve played a lot of different string manufactures but I always seem to return to Ernie Ball strings. I’ve played them most of my life. They always sound and play crisp and new to me and I’ve rarely ever broken a string. I love the extra flexibility in the slinky’s they fit well with my bending style.
     
  11. Biddlin

    Biddlin Senior Stratmaster

    Messages:
    1,935
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    Yeah, no! I have been using D'Addario NYXL 9s for a couple of years now after the high Es on my EB super slinkys started unwinding from the ball on my Vibrola equipped guitars. The new NYXL strings are not "brassy" sounding and they maintain their sweet tone for at least twice as long as the EBs. On my strats I use Rev Willy's (Dunlop) "Mexican Lottery" strings. (7-38) and they are also long lasting.
    Yes/no. Did you play the guitar when you picked it up? Setups are not a "one size fits all" deal. My perfect setup for a Strat with 9-42s would be impossible for other players to play without massive fret-out, but I play with very light downforce. When I was doing setups for a living I had the player play while I was doing the adjustments to the guitar so that it was tailored to their abilities and style. Look up "Biddlin's setup," do you own and you will not be disappointed.
     
    StummerJoe, 3bolt79, Rudedawg and 2 others like this.
  12. macoshark

    macoshark Strat-O-Master

    Messages:
    711
    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2016
    Location:
    arizona
    I just put EB Slinkys on my Player. I went to .10s and feeling I might go back to .11s. I probably should have gone with D'Adderios since that's what I'm used to. NO real problem with them just not liking the .10s so far
     
    3bolt79 likes this.
  13. AxemanVR

    AxemanVR I appreciate, therefore I am... Strat-Talk Supporter

    Messages:
    3,609
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2014
    Location:
    Minnesota USA
    Fresh strings do normslly sound brighter, but different string materials can effect tone as well.

    Buzzing and dramatic tone changes, on the other hand, are usually setup issues.

    I’m wondering if the pickup heights were changed as well.

    Either way, buzzing is definitely not acceptable after paying someone for a setup, although I’d be hesitant to having the same guy set it up again.

    Unfortunately (or fortunately) this may be a good time to consider learning how to set it up yourself...

    Good Luck!
     
    3bolt79 and nickmsmith like this.
  14. Dougeryb

    Dougeryb Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    49
    Messages:
    796
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2017
    Location:
    98335
    Did you make specific setup requests from the tech? Like: "lowest action possible" or "neck as straight as possible"? Did he adjust the pickup height?

    As mentioned earlier, the setup might actually be perfect for a light picker, but if you are a hard picker playing on a guitar set up with low action, you ARE going to get buzz.

    If the setup isnt right for you, take it back but communicate clearly with the tech. Show him exactly what you are experiencing. Perhaps he can see your playing style and adjust action accordingly.

    Finally, experiment with setting up your own guitar. You're on the right forum to learn from some of the most knowledgeable Strat folks out there!
     
  15. nickmsmith

    nickmsmith Jaguar Convert Strat-Talk Supporter

    Messages:
    10,559
    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    Pawnee, Indiana
    Yes. Learning to set up a guitar is second most important, only behind learning to play it.
    Doesn’t take long to learn.

    And saddle adjustments/truss rod adjustments fix the majority of problems anyone will run into. And these are simple fixes.
     
    3bolt79 and AxemanVR like this.
  16. AxemanVR

    AxemanVR I appreciate, therefore I am... Strat-Talk Supporter

    Messages:
    3,609
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2014
    Location:
    Minnesota USA

    Good points.

    Don’t listen to what others say, having the lowest action isn’t necessarily right for everyone. I personally hate having my strings set too low and I don’t usually pick especially hard.

    The “feel” of a guitar is not easily translated to someone else either, thus the “learning to set things up yourself”, since oftentimes some tweaking is required no matter how well setup it is...



     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2020
    3bolt79 likes this.
  17. archeetart

    archeetart New Member!

    Age:
    42
    Messages:
    7
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2020
    Location:
    dfw, texas
    i brought it in, said i was new to guitar, noticed a string that sat significantly lower at the saddle than the others and after some youtube decided i needed a setup. brought up that there was fret buzz and the action seemed high toward the neck. that was the extent of what i asked for.

    honestly, i don't mind tinkering and have already made the order on stewmac for the string action gauge and radius gauge. as for the pickups, i didn't say anything about it. i can't say if they were adjusted or not.

    i am probably a heavier picker than lighter picker, and the buzzing is more prevalent in playing chords/strumming which i am probably heavy handed.

    one other comments on the strings, i feel like i have to be more precise with finger placement on the fret to get the string to sound properly. seemed the fender strings were more forgiving. i could still get good tone, even if i miss fingered and fingered centered between frets, the tone was pretty good. now it just sounds like i am muting the string.
     
    3bolt79 likes this.
  18. Agtronic

    Agtronic Strat-O-Master

    Age:
    40
    Messages:
    502
    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2017
    Location:
    Montreal
    Maybe you can post a video of your playing the guitar unplugged, so that we can hear what you're describing. What you perceive as buzzing may be normal? It's difficult to diagnose these things with words on a forum. If you're not comfortable posting your playing, just fret some notes and do a few things so we an hear it.
     
    3bolt79 likes this.
  19. AxemanVR

    AxemanVR I appreciate, therefore I am... Strat-Talk Supporter

    Messages:
    3,609
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2014
    Location:
    Minnesota USA

    The first Strat I ever bought new was buzzy and the “salesperson” tried to convince me that was part of a Strat’s “character”.

    I wasn’t convinced, so he grudgingly adjusted the guitar right then and there to make the sale.

    If it wasn’t for the fact that I was caught off guard (and really wanted that particular guitar) I would have just walked out on him. That interaction produced two results:

    1) I never dealt with that guy ever again.

    2) I started setting up my own guitars...


     
    3bolt79 and BallisticSquid like this.
  20. thomquietwolf

    thomquietwolf Dr. Stratster Strat-Talk Supporter

    Age:
    79
    Messages:
    13,820
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2010
    Location:
    Peardale CA
    I always get nervous 24-96 hours before a perform....
    New strings on the New Yorker or Sigma Martin....
    Acoustic fool....
    Acoustic fool.....
    The tone is always disconcerting
    And
    Say to myself....
    Ex Wives????