I typed something up, but my thoughts were very scattered and as I read it, I couldn't make sense of it myself so I think I'll just sum it up without as detailed of an explanation.
I think straight sets are best for making more "permanent" and manageable strength gains. The increases may be smaller and take longer, but will ultimately keep you healthy and strong.
When I use ramping sets, its generally for big increases to 1RMs or 5RMs. I find them to be very useful in terms of breaking mental barriers, to help you free up some potential physical strength you may not have known you had. I find that while they're very useful, the intensity can be so high that its hard to keep it consistent and eventually leads to being burned out. I may do very high intensity and PR breaking singles or sets for several sessions or weeks in a row. And while the pay out may be significant, the result is getting burned out if left unchecked.
When I was making my best gains overall, I was using a variation of Texas Method. Which as some of you may know, is a mix of straight sets and ramping.
However, as I type this, I realize that never in my time of lifting have I tried manageable ramping sets. IE, lifting up to a high intensity set or 5RM and then repeating that lift week after week before increasing it again. Any time that I do ramping sets I go for big increases every time, instead of working with very high intensity single sets week after week. If that makes any sense at all...
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