He is a fan of lighter gauge strings and the extra playability he gets from them, thanks to the reduced string tension. With less tension, techniques like bends, vibrato, and tremolo are easier to handle.
They are made from nickel-plated steel wires wrapped around tin-plated hex-shaped steel core wire. They produce a well-balanced tone with their high carbon steel construction. The gauges are .009, .011, .016, .024w, .032, .042
He uses these strings when he needs even more playability when bending. These strings also add extra treble and mid frequencies to his tone. The gauges of the set are .008, .011, .014, .022w, .030, .038.
Another interesting fact is that he likes to experiment with his strings. In the Led Zeppelin days, he replaced his standard G string with a B string to make the bending easier.
He placed the high E string as the second string instead of the B string, and for the high E string, he used the high A string from a tenor banjo!
The acoustic strings are made from 80% copper and 20% zinc wire wrapped around hex-shaped brass plated steel core wire.
The light gauge strings produce amazing overtones with a crisp and ringing sound.
These strings were released back in 1972, which is the year Page started playing with them. Before, he used bronze over Unobtanium on his acoustic guitars.
Most of the classic Led Zeppelin songs were created with the Earthwood Extra Light 80/20 string set. The gauges of his Earthwood set are .010, .014, .020, .028, .040, .050.
Again with the light gauge strings, Jimmy Page gets a clear, crisp “singing” tone. It’s with this signature sound he recorded most of his iconic riffs, solos, and melodies.
Effects Of Lighter Gauge Strings On Jimmy Page’s Tone
Playability is not the only thing Jimmy Page gets from lighter gauge strings. With lighter strings, he gets a tone more focused on the treble and mid frequencies instead of bass.
So, his overall tone gets crisper and clearer but with less sustain, overall volume, and warmth.
Another drawback of lighter gauge strings is their susceptibility to breaking off.
Techniques like bends, vibratos, and tremolo action force the limits of the string tension, and lighter strings can deal with less overall tension, making them more susceptible to snapping or breaking.
But of course, bending, vibratos, and most guitar techniques are much easier to make with lighter strings. So you get extra playability, which you do not get with heavy gauge strings.