If you’re new to playing guitar after a couple month you might start to wonder how much are guitar strings. What do guitar strings cost? Should I go with expensive strings or cheap ones? How does the type of string impact cost?
These are all important questions that need to be answered, and we’ll discuss them below.
In short, guitar strings vary in price but you should expect to pay between $10-$25 for standard strings. You could buy cheap strings in bulk and get well below $10 per pack, or spend upwards of $50 for a high end specialty set.
Personally, I’ve never spent more than $20 on a pack, probably averaging about $15 per pack.
How much do different types of guitar strings cost?
While there isn’t much difference in price between electric guitar strings and acoustic guitar strings, there is a difference in cost depending on the materials and type of string produced.
Thicker strings or strings that are higher gauge tend to coast a little more. Light or super light guitar strings can be cheaper. However, you could go so light that the price begins to rise because it costs more to produce such a fine (thin) string.
Guitar strings manufactured with different types of metal alloys can range dramatically. Nylon strings tend to cost slightly more than their steel string counterpart, but is usually on par.
Coated guitar strings such as Elixir strings can add a couple bucks to the cost of a pack. The added benefit is that these strings will typically last longer, and if you enjoy the feel of coated strings, it’s worth it.
Flatwound guitar strings also tend to cost a couple of bucks more, simply because they’re a “niche” type of string and cost more to manufacture.
So depending on items like quality, materials and style, you will find guitar string prices vary, but only within about a $10 range.
How much does it cost to have a guitar restrung?
If you’re looking to have your guitar restrung at a shop, it’s obviously going to cost you a good amount more than if you do it yourself.
Gone are the days of “if you buy the strings from us we’ll put them on for free”, this was what we did at the old mom and pop shop I worked at, but is becoming harder to find with all the corporate takeovers of the mom and pop music shops across North America.
You’re looking at the range between $25-$40 for the cost of the pack of strings and to have a tech put them on the guitar. The nice thing is that the shop will usually give your guitar a nice little clean up while they have the strings off.
I’d strongly recommend learning how to change your own strings. It will not only save you cash in the long run but will help you learn to better maintain your guitar. It’s great that you can bring it in to a shop to have it professionally maintained, but it’s always good to be able to identify problems as they arise.