High Beams on a Jazz Bass - Basstringsonline comes through again!

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by mellowinman, Oct 4, 2013.


  1. mellowinman

    mellowinman Guaranteed to break the Ice at Naughty Parties Supporting Member

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    So I mentioned on here that I got the right strings to tune my 5-string Jazz to D-G-C-F-Bb. http://www.bassstringsonline sold me some custom sized DR High Beams, and it really made the bass come alive.

    The strings were a bit on the thick side, and really made those low notes ring out. The problem was, when I went to play my main bass, the 4-string Jazz tuned to E standard, the two year old DR Black Beauties just sounded muddy and dead.

    My wife is my Tone Manager, (trust me; I don't have any choice in this,) and she was just apoplectic about the EQ problems presented when I switch basses, and didn't like that the bass I play the most is the one that sounds the worst.

    So I got me a set of High Beams in a slightly heavy gauge for the 4-string, and put them on tonight, and we spent some time A-B'ing the two instruments. At first, she said the 5-string sounded better, so I had her step into the other room, and stopped playing the notes that can only be played on a bass tuned to D. I played a standard blues run, all fretted, so open strings wouldn't give away which bass it was.

    She picked the 4-string as the superior tone, and I proved it by walking into the room still playing it. So we had a little celebration, because for the bass I play the most to sound slightly better is cool. (it has EMG Select pickups; the 5-string has whatever Squier Affinity V's come stock with.) It was a good test result for another reason:

    I bought HER a set for her Ibanez. She plays GHS Boomers, and I haven't liked their sound since she first put them on. The had a tone of string noise, and sounded overly bright and barky, and now that they've been on long enough to go slightly dead, they still have that annoying rasp to them. I got her a set of DR High Beams in the normal Medium gauge that she likes to play, and I think she is going to put them on this weekend sometime.

    I really hope they sound as good on the active Bartollinis as they do on my two Jazz basses, which brings me to a question:

    I really think the DR High Beams bring out the sound I like, which is really just the essence of a Fender Jazz bass. Has anyone else experienced this? I mean, they're bright, but it seems like they are "mid-bright" instead of "highs-bright," which I wouldn't like. The lows are well defined, but still have some nice round boominess to them. I'm excited for her to get them on the Ibanez, and more excited to play a gig.

    I really think our bass sound has lacked some definition, and when I played the 5-string at the last gig, it really did seem to jump out at you. I hope that happens with all three of our basses.
     
  2. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

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    Not with a Fender Jazz specifically, but with a souped-up J-style instrument, yes. I own a Carvin SB5000 - Carvin's take on a modern five-string Jazz - with a set of Delano JMVC 5 FE humbuckers, and an Audere JZ6D-VB-3B Jazz plate onboard preamp.

    I specifically chose a set of medium-gauge Hi-Beams because I thought they would make a good match. I was mistaken: They make a great match - zingy & ringy, but not too pingy! :smug:

    Great feel, long life and a tone with an abundance of high mids - but smooth, not clanky & clangy as with so many stainless steel roundwounds.

    MM
     
  3. mellowinman

    mellowinman Guaranteed to break the Ice at Naughty Parties Supporting Member

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    So do you think they'll sound good on the Ibanez SR-700, with the active Bartollinis?
     
  4. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

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    I don't think they'll sound bad...

    MM
     
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  6. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

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    I have been using lighter gauge Sadowsky and Fender Nickel-plated round wounds on my Jazzes and P/J. They are bright, even clanky, when desired, and have a rich, focused pitch—until they get a little too old.

    Just put a set of light Hi Beams (.045-.095) on my CS Jazz early '60s relic. Yeah! These are the DR strings I've always liked best—kept forgetting. Ordering a couple of new sets right now.

    They work very well for getting a clear, clean, but classic Jazz tone. They are sounding sweet, rich, subtle, but clearly present for finger-style and slap. They feel rather smooth, flexible, and fine textured for full blown rounds. :cool:
     
  7. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

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    That's because they're not full-blown rounds. They're compression-wound strings. That's why they feel rather smooth to the touch, and finely-textured. That's also why they sound more refined than full-blown rounds. Because the outer wrap has been compressed down a bit, to the point that you can hear it, as well as feel it.

    MM
     
  8. Bert Slide

    Bert Slide

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    I have found the same thing. I used to never like new strings because they were too bright but the Hi beams are just incredible in bringing out the best things in a Jazz tone. I'm getting ready to put a new set on one of my Jazzes and I am actually exited, rather than dreading the break in period.
     
  9. mellowinman

    mellowinman Guaranteed to break the Ice at Naughty Parties Supporting Member

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    She finally put them on! Man, do they sound good!
     
  10. KingRazor

    KingRazor

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    Is this true for all of their strings or only the round cores?
     

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