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Thread: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

  1. #21
    Ultimate Tone Slacker TMD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    Wait a minute. Wait a minute. That is the smartest thing I’ve ever seen anyone post about anything.

  2. #22
    Chris JB_From_Hell's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    I played at my dad's service today, then we had a memorial jam afterward. I played his Gibson F-5 mandolin, which I set up with lighter strings than I typically use and MUCH lower action than I usually use. I was glad it was like that during the service, as I was nervous as hell and needed all the help I could get. About an hour into the jam, I got to thinking about how it didn't have as much punch as I wanted. I'm going to raise the action some, and probably go back to the heavy gauge strings.

    My wife's cousin came up, and brought his acoustic guitar with him. It's setup 11-50, with EXTREMELY low action. My Gibson is 12-56 with what I'd call medium action for an acoustic. For fingerpicking, his sounds good and is super easy to play, but if you want to flatpick and really dig in, it falls apart.

    Point is, different setups work for different things.
    "Patience is key. Hard work is obligatory. And itís the decisions you make right now, not the habits of the past, that will shape your success in the future." - Janek Gwizdala

  3. #23
    LoveMachineologist jeremy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    i play slide a fair amount and switch between fretting and slide in the same song all the time. i have 11s on all my electrics and the action is higher than id guess most people would like but it works well for me. "a little too high for solos, a little too low for slide" or whatever warren haynes said. for acoustics i have a tayor that plays like butter but if you hit it hard, it doesnt give you anything more and doesnt sound great. my martin on the other hand has higher action and isnt as easy to play but gives you something back if you lay into it. different setups for different things like chris and others have said

  4. #24
    Mojo's Minions eclecticsynergy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    Slide playing is the one area where lighter strings have been a real problem for me, even with the medium action that I prefer.
    .
    "My hovercraft is full of eels."

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  5. #25
    Mojo's Minions eclecticsynergy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    Quote Originally Posted by TMD View Post
    I donít follow. How do higher strings have more downward pressure, and how does that keep the strings secure under your fingers?
    It's because you have to press the string down slightly farther to fret a note. Somehow that little bit of extra pressure at the contact point keeps the string from trying to slip out from under the fingertip when you bend. It seems especially helpful for bends using the index or middle finger. For me at least.
    .
    "My hovercraft is full of eels."

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  6. #26
    LoveMachineologist jeremy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy View Post
    i play slide a fair amount and switch between fretting and slide in the same song all the time. i have 11s on all my electrics and the action is higher than id guess most people would like but it works well for me. "a little too high for solos, a little too low for slide" or whatever warren haynes said. for acoustics i have a tayor that plays like butter but if you hit it hard, it doesnt give you anything more and doesnt sound great. my martin on the other hand has higher action and isnt as easy to play but gives you something back if you lay into it. different setups for different things like chris and others have said
    i can do it now but it took a long time to develop the touch needed to play on light strings and/or low action if i borrow a guitar to sit in or something. like most things, practice gets ya there

  7. #27
    of the Forum PFDarkside's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy View Post
    i can do it now but it took a long time to develop the touch needed to play on light strings and/or low action if i borrow a guitar to sit in or something. like most things, practice gets ya there
    Practice? What’s that?
    Oh no.....


    Oh Yeah!

  8. #28
    LoveMachineologist jeremy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    its a thing i used to do a lot! and for the past 15+ years have been coasting on that practice. these days i barely pick up a guitar if im not on a gig, havent been any of them since mid march and dont expect there will be for a while. thisll be the first year i havent done 100+ in as long as i can remember. might have to start practicing so i dont forget how to play

  9. #29
    of the Forum PFDarkside's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    Quote Originally Posted by jeremy View Post
    its a thing i used to do a lot! and for the past 15+ years have been coasting on that practice. these days i barely pick up a guitar if im not on a gig, havent been any of them since mid march and dont expect there will be for a while. thisll be the first year i havent done 100+ in as long as i can remember. might have to start practicing so i dont forget how to play
    I was playing recently and thought “I am so much worse now than I was about 15 years ago”. Wait, when did I rejoin the forum?
    Oh no.....


    Oh Yeah!

  10. #30
    Ultimate Tone Slacker Archer250's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lower Gauge + Higher Action vs Higher Gauge + Lower Action

    I used to do 10-52s with medium action... Now I do 10-46, but also with medium action.
    Quote Originally Posted by Myaccount876 View Post
    Attenuators are for pussies. Neighbors calling the cops isn't a problem - if the cops can actually still decipher the neighbor's complaint on the phone with the Marshall in the background, you're doing it wrong and it needs to be louder.

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