Torture tested guitar strings

A robotic arm tests the durability of D'Addario Strings

Making strings is a family business for the D'Addarios. In fact, Jim D'Addario, CEO of D'Addario and Company, remembers being a 13 when his dad first started asking him to test guitar string prototypes while watching television. 

Since taking over the company, D'Addario has made it a point to innovate the technology involved in making newer, better guitar strings. That's how the company's more durable NYXL strings came to be. The technology behind the new strings starts with the wire:

Here's host Ben Johnson with Jim D'Addario getting a chance to feel the wire for himself:

Part of the process of developing the NYXL strings has been, well, torturing them: stretching them beyond their normal capacity and then using a robotic arm to continuously strum the warped string.

As the saying goes, the proof is in the...broken strings? The average string lasts just a couple of strokes against the torture machine, while the NYXL strings can last upwards of 1,000 strums while still staying in tune.

About the author

Ben Johnson is the host of Marketplace Tech.

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