Elixir Nanoweb vs Polyweb Guitar Strings [Know The Difference!]

If you are on your way to your local Guitar Center to get new guitar strings, you might want to know the difference between Elixir’s Nanoweb and Polyweb guitar strings.

I have been using Elixir strings for a while because of its long-lasting coating, but I never knew the difference between their Nanoweb and Polyweb coating formula. 

After a couple of hours of research and countless hours of playing each type of string, I discovered that the main difference between the two formulas is the type of coating that is used to prevent corrosion, rust, and deterioration.

Nanoweb has a much thinner coating than Polyweb. 

Elixir strings are more long-lasting than regular strings, which is why they cost more.

Over time, guitar strings will naturally corrode due to humidity and sweat coming from our fingers and hands.

It will accumulate dirt and grime, but having a Polyweb and Nanoweb guitar coating will extend the life of your guitar strings

Elixir Nanoweb vs. Polyweb Guitar Strings

Elixir Nanoweb vs Polyweb Guitar Strings - best acoustic and electric guitar string sizes

As I mentioned earlier, the main difference between the two strings is the thickness of the coating.

However, there are more differences beyond just the thickness of the coating.

Each of these types of strings has a different tone, use, and playability. 

Nanoweb Strings

Nanoweb Strings - elixir acoustic guitar strings

Elixir’s Nanoweb coating is much thinner than the Polyweb coating, but that is not the only difference.

With thinner coating, the strings are much easier to play, producing a much brighter sound.

I feel that Nanowebs are more lucid and more articulate, which makes them great for doing guitar solos and lead parts.

If you are a guitarist who loves to shred and play fast, the Nanoweb strings are much better for that playing style. 

These strings are excellent for:

  • Lead guitar parts
  • Guitar solos
  • Bending
  • Vibrato 

Polyweb Strings

Polyweb Strings - elixir polyweb vs optiweb

Polyweb strings use a much thicker coating that results in a more compressed sound.

These strings are excellent for playing warm tones and rhythm parts.

They have a fuller tone, so if you are the only guitarist in your band, you would want to choose Polyweb strings for the fuller tone.

However, due to the added thick coating, these strings are harder to bend. 

The thicker coating is hardly noticeable, but it can prevent oxidation longer than Nanoweb strings, which means you can use these strings for a longer time.

These strings are excellent for:

  • Rhythm guitar parts
  • Players with acidic sweat that are prone to breaking strings
  • Rock and metal guitar players
  • Post-rock, mathcore players

Guitar Strings and Tone

Guitar Strings and Tone - where are elixir strings made

There are a lot of aspects that factor to the overall guitar tone.

It is the guitar itself, the amp, the action and intonation, and so much more.

The strings are commonly overlooked, but they have a significant impact on your guitar tone.

Older strings will sound less bright with less sustain, so make sure you take care of your strings and extend its life. 

Elixir strings are my go-to strings because they last a lot longer than most strings.

Aside from its durability, they also provide great tone and playability.

Without knowing the difference of guitar strings, you might end up choosing strings that would not fit your style. 

Guitar String Care

Guitar String Care - elixir strings review

Here are some tips to extend the life of your strings:

Wipe the Guitar Dry After Playing

After practicing for hours, make it a habit to wipe the guitar dry with a clean rag.

I would always wipe each string from top to bottom after practicing and even after playing live sets. 

Store Guitar Properly

If you live in a humid area, make sure you store the guitar properly in your hard case.

It also helps if you have a pack of silica gel.

Just throw in a silica gel pack in the case with your guitar, and you won’t have to worry about mold buildup around your strings. 

Keep Your Guitar Away From Dust

If your guitar is always on a guitar stand, make sure you keep it away from dusty areas, and always wipe or dust it from time to time.

This practice will protect not only the strings but also the guitar’s finish to keep it from fading. 


Strings are one of the essential factors that impact your guitar tone.

It is a good idea to choose the right strings that fit your playing style.

Now that you know the difference between Elixir Polyweb and Nanoweb string formula, you can select whichever of the two is best for you. 

Last update on 2021-07-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Table of Contents