One thing I always say about guitar strings is that what makes a string good is somewhat subjective as what sounds pleasant to one person may not sound quite so pleasant to another. As such, when shopping for guitar strings, reviews can point you in the right direction but it is important to try a few sets out to hone in on exactly which ones you like. If you are looking for a set of phosphor bronze strings, Ernie Ball’s Regular Slinky should be on your list of acoustic guitar strings to try.
The construction on these is pretty standard. Steel core, phosphor bronze wrap, and reasonably high quality. As far as strings go, these should be considered a no frills set. That can be a good thing though, because frills often add cost and unnecessary complexity to something that otherwise functions fine without them. This is the case with the Slinky’s, so don’t fear that they don’t have a coating or specially shaped core. They work! And although it doesn’t pertain directly to the string, Ernie Ball does brag a little bit about their packaging, stating that the strings come from the factory hermetically sealed(this is another word for airtight). I have played on plenty of sets that have come in cardboard boxes with individual paper sleeves for each string(or in other words strings that have NOT been hermetically sealed) and frankly I can’t tell a difference because I’ve never taken a new string from any manufacturer out of a package and noticed any element of corrosion. Take that for what it’s worth.
Tone is always the crux of the matter when it comes to guitar strings, and the Ernie Ball Regular Slinky’s sound great! Deep and rich basses couple with bright and vibrant highs. If I had to place them on the spectrum, they are about a 7.5 out of 10 for brightness. I find the sound to be pleasing to listen to. I also find them to be slippery enough to be easy to play and often equate them to the D’Addario EJ16’s.
Ernie Ball offers their acoustic Slinky line in numerous sizes, and even sells strings individually. In addition to Regular Slinky’s which are essentially 12 gauge, these strings can be had in Extra Slinky, Super Slinky, Hybrid Slinky, Power Slinky and 12-String Slinky. The adjective simply pertains to the size, with Extra being the lightest gauge and Power being the heaviest gauge.
These strings stay in tune well, and because they are phosphor bronze, they seem to stave off corrosion quite well. They don’t last forever like a set of coated Elixir’s, but that is the price you pay for running a non-coated string.
Overall, the Ernie Ball Regular Slinky’s represent a good value. They do cost a couple clicks more than the EJ16’s referenced above, and are overall a pretty similar string. As such, I would give the value nod to the EJ16 over these. However, these strings do have slightly different tonal characteristics than the EJ16’s, which might make them worth the extra buck for a set to some people depending on personal preference. Due to this, I still recommend trying a set out to see if you like them. Like I said, a good value, but not quite as good as the EJ16’s in my opinion.
So there it is. Overall a nice sounding no frills string that is easy to play. You can read more reviews on Amazon.com if you want to find out more or see what others have to say. All in all, they are a good set of cheap guitar strings that will serve you well! You can also read about more of the best acoustic strings on the main page!