May 5, 2019 at 9:43 pm #27137ukukelley1Participant
Wondering if anyone else has tried Living Waters strings by Ken Middleton in England? I LOVE THEM. I bought a used KoAloha Tenor, and the person who’d had it put D’Addario strings on it — I think some of their best, with a beautiful pale purple look… The sound of this tenor was really disappointing, however, and I was wondering if I’d made a big mistake in purchasing it. (Which was weird, because KoAlohas are known for their incredible sound!) Then I saw a review for Living Waters strings on gotaukulele.com. Baz specifically talked about a uke that he’d had these same D’Addarios on and when he replaced them with Living Waters strings it really brought that instrument to life. So I gave them a try and the difference is really astounding. Now I couldn’t be happier with the KoAloha tenor. I wouldn’t have believed strings could make such a difference. These also feel great — lighter to the touch than the Aquilas I have on other ukes. I ordered several sets of strings and over time that’s what I’ll migrate to for everything. They’re a little more expensive, but Ken has a flat shipping rate for any number of strings you ordered.May 7, 2019 at 12:59 pm #27151soraya06Participant
I looove the living water strings !!!They are absolutely the holy grail of strings for me, i just can’t imagine that other strings could possibly sound any better 🙂
I was in a similar situation as you. I bought a Pono ATD which had the ko’olau standard nylon strings with a wound 3rd string (which i hated with a passion ) And my uke sounded so incredibly flat and lifeless, i almost started to think i bought the wrong one. But then i did a little research into different strings and read lots and lots of reviews ( including the one from Baz who, by the way, also convinced me to go for the Pono ADT lol !) As soon as i put on the living water strings this glorious, full and clear sound came out of my uke, it sounded like a completely different instrument, i was in shock that it made such a radical difference !! I also noticed that the strings have a really pleasant “grip” that aids in fingerpicking more smoothly,if that makes any sense LOL ! I think i will never put any other strings on my pono 🙂May 7, 2019 at 1:59 pm #27154becky7777Participant
Question for you two.
How hard is it to bend the living water strings? (Up at least a half step?) I actually really like the Pepe Romero strings that came on the tiny tenor but they’re like steel rods.May 7, 2019 at 2:15 pm #27155lisamccParticipant
I’ve just got some living strings on order – following the reviews and one of my uke buddies swears by them. I’ll let you know about bending. I’m really excited about them. It’s a bit nuts for a manufacturer not to string their instruments with something that maximises the quality – if you are lucky enough to trial the instruments in a shop, it can put you off.May 7, 2019 at 5:45 pm #27158ukukelley1Participant
I think they feel better under the fingers and bend nicely, but I’m not sure that they’re much better at bending than the Aquila New Nylguts I have on another instrument. Seems like differences in action might also affect this? Not sure. I attempted to measure the amount of bend (not so sure all the way to half step), but the reading registers the initial note and when I bend just zips off to the right of the screen like “I know that’s higher but I don’t know what note you got to…”.
SherylMay 12, 2019 at 12:40 am #27237kanae926Participant
Five out of six of my ukes came strung with Aquila (Nylgut or Super Nylgut) and of those five, two are low G (wound, which I didn’t care much for). Well, one of the low G strings randomly popped broken while the uke was still sleeping in its case one morning, so it gave me a really good excuse to go looking for a new low G set that wasn’t Aquila or wound.
Based on this thread and having seen Baz’s review on Got a Ukulele, I went to Ken’s site to purchase some of the Living Water strings to try. Gosh, after international shipping and foreign transaction fees, it came out to more than $12 (USD) a set. That’s more than I’ve ever paid for strings, so I hope I like them!
The sixth uke that doesn’t have Aquila is strung with Ko’olau Alohi (plain nylon). I’ve always liked them better in terms of sound and feel (strumming or plucked), so I’m hoping the fluorocarbons will be a nice change from Aquila.
I’ve been wanting to try Worth strings too, but they’re even more expensive than Living Water! 😲 But I just realized that they’re all double sets that I’ve been looking at and I don’t know if that’s the standard, but it explains the prices (average $15 USD per set). So I guess that’s not so bad.
There are so many choices I want to try next (Fremont, Martin, Oasis…).May 12, 2019 at 2:31 pm #27273lisamccParticipant
Strings are on and are beautiful. Bending depends on the position. I can get a full semitone on the 5th fret… Harder below there.
They are clear and bright and have made a massive difference to my low G tenor (with the horrible metal wound low G string now replaced!)
My concert with aquilas= I’m not noticing as much of a difference – as it sounded great before.
Hope that helps
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