The Most Popular Mandolin Strings, Ranked

Choose the mandolin strings you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Jun 18, 2024 06:16
For mandolin enthusiasts, choosing the right strings is crucial for achieving the desired sound quality and playing comfort. However, with numerous brands and types available, selecting the best strings can often feel overwhelming. A collective approval from a community who understands and appreciates the nuances of mandolin strings can greatly simplify this decision. This site offers a dynamic ranking system where mandolin players from all walks of life can cast their votes for the strings they believe to be superior. By participating, you not only learn which strings come highly recommended but also contribute to a broader consensus, helping newcomers make informed choices. Your input ensures the ranking reflects current preferences and experiences in the mandolin community.

What Are the Most Popular Mandolin Strings?

  1. 1

    D'Addario EJ74 Phosphor Bronze Mandolin Strings

    These strings are known for their warm, bright, and balanced acoustic tone.
    • Gauge: Medium (11-40)
  2. 2

    DR Strings Mandolin Strings

    DR Strings are known for their hand craftsmanship and vibrant, long-lasting tone.
    • Gauge: Varies
  3. 3

    Cleartone 7511 Phosphor Bronze Mandolin Strings

    Cleartone's EMP coating technology offers a bright tone and extended lifespan.
    • Gauge: Light (11-40)
  4. 4

    Martin M400 80/20 Bronze Mandolin Strings

    These strings deliver a bright tone and longevity with 80/20 Bronze composition.
    • Gauge: Light (10-34)
  5. 5

    Elixir 11500 Polyweb Mandolin Strings

    Elixir's Polyweb coating provides a slick, fast feel with extended tone life.
    • Gauge: Light (10-34)
  6. 6

    D'Addario EJ73 Phosphor Bronze Mandolin Strings

    These strings are preferred for their warm and bright tone with excellent projection.
    • Gauge: Light (10-38)
  7. 7

    GHS A270 Phosphor Bronze Mandolin Strings

    GHS A270 strings are designed to provide a warm, rich tone suitable for a variety of musical styles.
    • Gauge: Medium (11-40)
  8. 8

    Ernie Ball 2067 Earthwood Mandolin Light Strings

    Ernie Ball Earthwood strings offer a crisp and ringing sound with 80/20 Bronze alloy.
    • Gauge: Light (9-34)
  9. 9

    Aquila New Nylgut Mandolin Strings

    Aquila strings are unique for their blend of traditional tone with modern durability, using Nylgut material.
    • Gauge: Medium
  10. 10

    Thomastik-Infeld 154 Mandolin

    These strings are celebrated for their soft, clear tone and smooth playing feel.
    • Gauge: Medium

Missing your favorite mandolin strings?

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular mandolin strings. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or string is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 82 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each string once every 24 hours. The rank of each string is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

Additional Information

More about the Most Popular Mandolin Strings

Mandolin players know the importance of choosing the right strings. The sound and playability of the instrument depend on this choice. Mandolin strings come in various materials, gauges, and coatings. Each type affects the tone and feel of the mandolin.

Bronze strings are common. They produce a bright, clear sound. These strings suit many styles, from bluegrass to classical. Phosphor bronze strings are similar but add warmth to the tone. They are popular for their balanced sound.

Stainless steel strings offer a different feel. They are durable and resist corrosion. Players who need long-lasting strings often choose these. They have a bright sound but can be less warm than bronze strings.

Flatwound strings have a smooth surface. They reduce finger noise and feel slick. Jazz and classical players often prefer these for their mellow sound. They also last longer due to their construction.

Gauge refers to the thickness of the strings. Light gauge strings are easier to play. They require less finger pressure and bend easily. Beginners often start with light gauge strings. Medium gauge strings offer a balance of playability and tone. They are versatile and suit many genres. Heavy gauge strings produce a louder, fuller sound. They need more finger strength and can be tough on beginners.

Coated strings have a thin layer of polymer. This coating extends the life of the strings. It protects them from sweat and dirt. Coated strings can feel different from uncoated ones. Some players like the feel, while others prefer the natural touch of uncoated strings.

String tension affects playability and tone. High tension strings produce more volume and sustain. They are harder to press down and bend. Low tension strings are easier to play but may lack volume. Finding the right tension is key for comfort and sound.

Changing strings often is important. Old strings lose their tone and can break. Regular string changes keep the mandolin sounding its best. Players should experiment with different types of strings. This helps find the best match for their playing style and instrument.

Mandolin strings vary widely. The choice depends on the player’s needs and preferences. Trying different materials, gauges, and coatings can improve the playing experience. The right strings make a big difference in sound and feel.

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