How Many Strings Does an Electric Guitar Have?

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Just How Many Strings Does an Electric Guitar Have?

Electric Guitar is a prime example of how technology and music has come together to give us an amazing instrument that empowers us to explore our creativity in ways we have never experienced before. The electric guitar is a real treat and a true work of art, a true modern musical instrument that has become an iconic and treasured part of the modern guitarist’s tool belt.

But before you dive in you will want to personalize your guitar and for that you’ll need to know how many strings does an electric guitar have.

If you are new to the mesmerizing, intriguing, free world of music playing, and are looking to explore some new ideas with music, then the electric guitar has got something for you!

How Many Strings Does an Electric Guitar Have?

It’s crucial to understand that every instrument with strings will have set numbers. Guitars, unlike the cello, viola, contrabass, violin, and others, is somewhat different as it can come with different types of string configurations. This may seem obvious, but if you’re thinking about getting a new electric guitar, you’ve likely already considered its string gauges. A standard-gauge electric guitar, such as a Tele, has between 4-12 strings. While a more strung instrument such as a Les Paul has between 8-12 strings.

In the majority of cases, guitars come with six strings, yet there are types of guitars that come with more.

How Many Strings Do Electric Guitars Come With?

The quick answer for electric guitars is 6 strings.

Here is an overview of a more in-depth description.

Many of the “standard” electric guitars that are produced in factories are equipped with 6 strings.

This has to do with most of the guitar brands either producing strings of their own, or they partner up with other companies that produce them.

Electric guitars are also available in different configurations. These include 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12 string configurations.

The 7 string guitars and higher, provide the user with access to the lower notes. With each string added, the instrument provides more bass.

However, the 12-string electric guitars are slightly different as they come equipped with 2 courses of strings dedicated to each note, similar to a mandolin.

Playing a 12-string electric guitar is similar to playing a 6-string guitar, excepting that the tone is thicker due to the addition of an octave.

Customized options have increased over time. For example, Jared Dines, a well-known YouTuber owns an impressive 18-string guitar, while Stevie T, has a 20-string guitar.

Today it is also possible to come across the double, quad, and triple neck-electric guitars. Yet some agree that it starts getting a bit ridiculous beyond 4.

The more common of these configurations includes the double-neck guitars that come with a 6-string and 12-string. For the guitars that come with additional necks, they are often used for fretless setups or for the purpose of alternate tunings.

Professional also recommend changing electric guitar strings if you experience string buzz. Though you can also use the truss rod to tighten them to fix the issue, buzzing can mean that the string is worn out.

Final Thoughts

Because guitars generally have a range that is wider than instruments like violas or violins, and because most guitarists play more than one note at the same time, certain people suggest that guitars are similar to a complete string section used in orchestras.

This may be true to a certain extent, yet the contrabass or the cello is capable of playing notes that are far lower when compared to what standard guitars are able to.

Guitars are regarded as ideal for accompaniment as the player is able to play all the strings simultaneously, while providing fullness to chord progressions and riffs. I am hopeful that this guide on how many strings does an electric guitar have would have proven to be of use to you!


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Hi, I'm Red, the Chief Editor of Red Diamond Audio.