String Shootout Series - Review: Dean Markley Helix Guitar Strings

Up next in our String Shootout, Dean Markley's Helix guitar strings. 

Dean Markley has a long history of making guitar strings. I remember being a loyal user of their Blue Steel strings when I was 17. Dean Markley claims that their new Elliptical-winding process creates a smoother string that feels better under your fingertips while giving superior tonal range because of the increased mass of the string.

After testing the Helix strings, I think I've found another Dean Markley obsession. Check our how the Helix series fared in our test.

Tone: Warm with balanced element of brightness, and a capability of “punch” is you want it. In other words, very versatile.

Tuning Stability: 4 out of 5

These strings seem to stay in tune quite well, even after having power chords bashed on them.

Playability and Feel: 4.5 out of 5

The new patent-pending Elliptical Winding process was supposed to bring a smoother feel and it delivered in spades. These strings are extremely comfortable to play and bending is a joy on them.

Response to pick attach and balance: 4 out of 5

The response of the Helix strings is remarkable, and the tone is very well balanced. The tonality is a warm one, but the strings can definitely put out some punch depending on the genre you’re playing.

Depth of sound/sustain: 4 out of 5

Sustain was above average with these strings, and the strings sound louder than the conventional strings I’ve used in the past.

Durability: 4.5 out of 5

There were no “dead” strings after two weeks of having these on my Les Paul, which is a lot more than I can say for most of the strings we have tested so far. The strings don’t get that “old” feeling to them and they wear very  well. (As an aside, I have used these strings on several other guitars and for longer than 2 weeks - the results in terms of durability were the same.)

My overall impression of these strings is that they are a remarkable product with a versatile tonal palate.
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