Fender 9050 or Sadowsky Black Label's for Sterling 5er
So I'm trying out flats for my Ray35 and am currently running Ernie Ball flats on it for about 3-5 months. It's been fun moving from rounds on these MM style basses. I feel like they are almost where I want them, but not quite. They have become a little thuddy for me on the B string than what I've wanted even with the bass cut on my pre. I'd still like to hear some musical quality in my B and so I'd like to try something else.
It sounds like the Fender 9050's or Sadowsky's are looking like good alternatives for my next move. I think Chromes are not going to work for me since the midrange "honk" doesn't really go away by what I'm hearing around here.
Here's what I'm looking for: A good top end, but defined B and E strings that still have some musical quality in them and not just a thud as they age.
The Fenders almost have a roundwound-like brightness and clarity, but after around 100-300 hours of playtime(depending on how corrosive your sweat is and how clean you keep them) they start getting a bit thumpier(not muddy though). I can't say anything for the B on them though(I'm a 4 stringer). I'm using the 40-100 set and the tension is a little unbalanced(like nearly all string sets) which is IMO one of the biggest reasons for a muddy sounding E/B string. They're awesome strings though, definitely worth a try.
Nevermind, they only sell one gauge of B string.
The D'Addario 132 is a great flat B string. The top end that can be annoying on the other strings is an asset to keeping the B string clear.
For E-G: the Fender 9050CL set. With the gauges 45-60-80-105, it is the most balanced of the Fender sets.
If the particular bass is too twangy on the G string, switch it out for a GHS Precision flat G string. That will take the edge off and blend better with the rest of the strings.
If the Fender E string starts to lose definition, but the A, D and G strings are still going strong, the Ernie Ball flat E string has the sonic characteristic that is closest to the Fender set, since Fender doesn't sell singles. You can get one relatively inexpensively from Jason at bassstringsonline.com .
Unless I'm tuning up from B to C, I don't like the Fender B string, although the 9050CL set is my favorite set of bass strings, period.
Anybody have any experience with Sadosky flats?
I'm curious about brand mixing with strings....wouldn't it become pretty obvious they are different kinds of strings as they age?? How do you pick the best tensions to keep everything fairly even?
Sadowsky hands down the best.
I'm not disagreeing with you, I'd just like to see more of an explanation. Everybody on this board, when describing Sadowsky flats, uses the same one liner, but nobody elaborates so it is meaningful to a person really considering this particular brand of strings.
For example: my favorite Fender flats sound great on my custom P/J for all the reasons I have stated in other threads, especially how their midrange characteristics seem to coordinate will with an alder body for straightforward playing for a good combination of clarity, growl, and when the tone knob is rolled down, mellow as necessary, with consistency of intonation and tone from string-to-string and up the fretboard. They are also inexpensive compared to other strings, especially Labella and T-I.
OTOH, they do not match with my Ibby SRA305, which having an agathis body, has a different resonance, and I have had to go to Chromes or Precision Flats so that I get a broad, versatile tone out of that bass.
Both basses are 34 inch scale, maple neck with rosewood fingerboard, with humbucking pickups in the same places, proportionally, so it is a good comparison.
Sadowsky are the best modern flats there are, IMHO. they have plenty of bass, plenty of clarity, they are bright without being clanky or zingy, and have fantastically musical overtones (but not too many of them). I had a set on my P, it took a couple weeks to settle in, but they never changed tone after that - for over a year.
I have tried about every kind of flat on all of my basses over the years and I feel the Sadowsky's are the best, specially on a 34" 5'er. Rodger knows what works on a 34" B string.
I tried the Fenders on my Jazz and hated them. I gave them a month and a half of break in and still hated them. I prefer Chromes or LaBella's over them.
The Sadowsky's have a great slick feel and much more versatile than Fenders, you can make them sound like old LaBella's or new Chromes with a little EQ but with the Fenders you always have the bright sound.
I just took off the Labella's on my SLO Sub4 and replaced them with Sadowsky's. It has never sounded so good.
Loving all of these explanations! Keep them coming agree with what has been said above specifically about Sadowsky's BL strings...almost no one really describes them much. Just that they are great....and there are almost NO sound clips out there of these strings in action.
I've only found one youtube video and it is mainly on the high end of the neck. I'd love to hear these BL's across the neck on a 5er...same for 9050's too honestly. :)
Sadowsky Flats Afcionado
I have, like many others on here, tried most major brand flats... including the Fender 9050 and Sadowsky BL Flats - Light Gauge at first (.040 - .100), and then Standard (.045- .105) for the last 3 years. With the Sadowskys, the perfect (IMHO) balance between the tension and the sound got me.
Their tension is light enough for expression on a ballad, and yet tight enough to groove straight eighths - or sixteenths. You can play them hard or soft... heck, I can even slap 'em (poorly). They do have a break-in period, but out of the pack they are very usable. Once broken in for a few gigs (and rubbed down after playing, before casing up) the tone has enough overtones that they are very EQ friendly. I can dial them from thump, to (with my active Sad Pre) growl, to a nice bite when needed. They are the most finger-friendly string too... smooth for days!
Tone is in the fingers, bass and amp... and in the strings!
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