Gear reviews and "guitar player interviews". The Guitar Zombie is the fastest spreading blog about guitars, amps, effects and other stuff.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Looking for the best strings for electric guitar?

One thing that really contributes to your guitar tone is of course your strings, therefor your choice of strings is crucial. The market for strings is huge and here is my short guide how to find the best guitar strings. I strongly recommend you to buy the different kind of strings described below and then let your ears and hands decide what is best for YOU. Whats best for others might not have anything to do with you. 

The material guitar strings are made of plays a role in the character of the sound coming out. Stainless steel are bright and Nickel are warmer and less bright, more of a vintage sound. Is the material a big thing? Yes and No, it depends of how your guitar sound in itself. Best thing to do is to test you through this area by yourself. There are a few more materials, Nickel-plated, Jazzy Chrome strings and each material has its own character.

Another thing you have to consider when choosing string is if you want coated or uncoated strings.

Uncoated strings is practically strings as they always have been, just strings as they are. By far most used out there. Great sounding but pretty short life time. Most professional guitarists change the hole string set after every performance. Hand sweat and skin dirt make the string less vibrate and you loose much of your tone.

Daddario explanation of coated strings 
Coated strings are strings with a coat, we are talking the three wound strings here (E, A, D normal tuning). The coat is mostly made of Teflon applied either before the winding or after. The result is a string that holds 3-4 times longer, and thats good. On the other hand the coated string loose some sustain and clarity, the coat gets in between the windings and inhibit some vibration. The process to manufacture coated strings are complicated and therefor these strings a more expensive, the higher price does not reflect a better sounding string as you might expect. The higher price might also reflect the longer string life, as you don't need to change that often.

Treated guitar strings is a quite new developed microscopic technique that does not inhibit sustain, clarity or volume that much as conventional coating but lets your strings last longer in the same way, approx 3-5 times vs uncoated strings. Treated strings are still coated, but in a different way.

The choice between coated or uncoated strings must be made out of how you play and even more important how you hear them in action with your guitar. Don't believe everything you read, use your ears instead.

Here are a few good strings you can order straight away and test with your guitar.

Uncoated Strings
Earnie Ball regular Nickel 4.19 USD Buy here

Coated Strings
Elixir Nanoweb Coating 8.50 USD Buy here

Treated Strings
Cleartone Monster Black Series 12.99 USD Buy here

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Best guitars, amps, and effects from 2015

 Best Products To Buy from the 2015 lineup is a hard thing to dive in to, but at the same time really interesting. During 2015 I bumped in to a whole bunch of really interesting stuff, especially if  you're a guitar aficionado like myself. I love everything about guitars. It´s pretty hard to pick out the best guitars, amps, effect pedals or even a guitar pick, because the market is flooded with great things nowadays.  This is my conclusion of what is recommended when looking back in to the year of 2015. As the products of 2016 is in stores now, you can make yourself a good deal on the 2015´s menu. Enjoy

Best buy PRS Guitars
When I first came over a PRS guitar, the brand was a completely new experience to me. During the year of 2015 I tested a whole bunch of models in my home over a long period of time. I must admit that they are really fine instruments. The consistency all the way from the SE series up to the high ends are quiet unique. The quality are just flawless. The top three are:

1. PRS SE Zach Myers.
A guitar worth much more than the pricetag says. Great sounding guitar. Buy here
2. PRS SE Custom Mark Tremonti.
Another great guitar in the SE series. A tone monster that not rob your wallet. Buy here
3. PRS Signature Mark Tremonti.
The high end version with great tone a stunning playability.  Buy here

Best Buy Fender Stratocaster
Fender continous to impress with their playability, especially the strats, and I´m glad to say that they once again have straightened up in details. There are still som models that do need some improvements but overall they're back in business, especially the Mexican ones.

1. Stratocaster Jeff Beck Signature A great strat with fabulous tremolo. Great playability. Buy here
2. Stratocaster Roadworn 50´s. The best mexican made Strat ever made. Buy here
3. Stratocaster Custom Shop 70´s Relic. Fabulous looks and a great player. Buy here

Best Buy Gibson Les Paul
The innovative touch of the 2015-series did not impress me at all, but there is one guitar that I think stands out from the others. A good price to if you want a classic Les Paul.

1. Gibson Les Paul Deluxe 2015.
A representative model with great feel. Buy here

Best buy Amplification
The choice of best amps is based on how they actually sounds och Marshall really stands out here in my opinion. The Kemper thing is climbing up at top three due to the growing amount of good profiles available on the market. If you need a variety of quality sound, the Kemper is your thing. The three at the top is:

1. Marshall JVM Joe Satriani 100 w Head.
Best sounding Marshall amp in years. It practically delivers whatever you like to hear.  Buy here
2. Kemper Profiling Amp.
The best digital amp ever, way ahead the other stuff on the market. Buy here
3. Marshall 1555X Silver Jubilee.
The reissue of the long loved classic. It really sounds like that the original. Buy here

Best buy new innovative products
1. Pykmax Guitar Pick
An new interesting new way of using a guitar pick. Buy here
2. BeatBuddy -Drummachine in a pedal.
Using this pedal as your rehearing companion at home is true happiness for sure. Easy to use and it contains close to every beat you'll ever need. Great for songwriting. Buy now

Best buy guitar effects
There was tons av pedals and these two stands out in my opinion.

1. Korg SDD 3000. The pedal version of the best delay ever.
Buy here
2. Ibanez TS9 Tube Screamer. A classic on every pedalboard.
Buy here

Stay Zombied !