.012-54's are the most popular and what comes shipped on most new guitars. It's our best selling string gauge for acoustic and it's a really good compromise between tone and playability.
If you want to torture your fingers, grab a diehard bluegrassers guitar and play it. Most those guys use AT LEAST .013-56's and have their action pretty high. The higher the action and heavier the string, the louder your acoustic guitar will be, as a general rule. Those guys don't plug in and they want to be heard so they string 'em heavy and leave the action high.
Originally Posted by Stagehand
listen mister, we didnt evolve porcelin shitters just so we could squat to take a shit, like monkeys.