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If I like D'Addario XLs, what will I REALLY like?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by two fingers, Feb 6, 2013.

  1. two fingers

    two fingers You tahkin 'uh me? Yeah, you. You tahkin 'uh me? Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I'll try to keep it short. My sweat chemistry won't let me play stainless strings. I gotta play nickels. I like XLs (medium 5s) and keep coming back to them after trying other strings.

    Simply put, I'm looking for something to try. I play all kinds of music so "this tone or that tone" isn't really a factor because I work with all kinds of tones. In other words, there's no one tone I'm after.

    What should I try that is "better" than the XLs? (Yep. I know "better" is a relative term and I WELCOME your opinions understanding they are just that..... opinions.) Again, nickel medium 5s.

  2. Try DR's. Sunbeams or Nickel Lo Riders. Sunbeams a little lower tension but both have great sound and feel.
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  4. two fingers

    two fingers You tahkin 'uh me? Yeah, you. You tahkin 'uh me? Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I play pretty hard so I'm thinking higher tension will be best for me. So nickel lo riders ey? Thanks. What else?
  5. JxBass

    JxBass Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2008
    I've played D'Addario XLs for many years. From time to time I have tried DR and other brands but always go back to the XLs.
  6. two fingers

    two fingers You tahkin 'uh me? Yeah, you. You tahkin 'uh me? Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    So far, me too. I'm just in the mood to try something else again. I'll probably come back too, but who knows?
  7. musicman666


    Sep 11, 2011
    Dean Markley makes a nickle plated Blue Steel....Not to shabby.
  8. klejst


    Oct 5, 2010
    If you like the D' Addario's then why change? :smug:

    Nah I get it, I love D' Addario strings, however the call to at least try others is always there
  9. Actually, try the new balanced tension D'Addarios. Normally I'm not a big D'Addario fan but I like these.
  10. Now you're just making it hard on the guy:D

    The uneven tension is why I strayed from D'addario in the first place.
  11. aRandomAggie

    aRandomAggie Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2011
    Britbonjc beat me to it, so here's another vote for the XL BT's.
  12. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    TI PowerBass. Or is it the Super Alloy that is the nickel string? I like both sets. Yes they are not cheap but they last a very long time and tonally they rock! Definately a round but way more body to go along with the cut.

    No kidding I would get 5 gigs out of XL's before they were dead... I used XL's back in my road days. A fresh set every week. I had an 'in' and got 'em cheap by the case. The TI's I get more like 6 to 12 months of gigs, for me these days that is 30 to 60 or so...
  13. sigmafloyd

    sigmafloyd Supporting Member

    May 1, 2011
  14. billgwx


    Apr 10, 2009
    Centereach NY
  15. T_Bone_TL


    Jan 10, 2013
    NW Mass/SW VT
    Sweat chemistry issues - have you tried tapewounds? Yah, I know, not your requested nickel-wounds, but ALSO resistant to sweat/grime (perhaps moreso) and a different string to try - and the feel - Oh Mah Gawd - not that I've used anything else to speak of so far. But I'm not seeing a lot of reason to want to, either...I love these things.
  16. D'addario has sets of balanced tension strings available and tension on each string is within just a pound or so from the others. The set of 42lb tension have 45, 60, 80, and 107 gauge strings. They have a heavier set, 53lb I believe, which when tuned to dgcf, have 42lb tension. Might be worth checking out.
  17. two fingers

    two fingers You tahkin 'uh me? Yeah, you. You tahkin 'uh me? Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Balanced tension...... hmmmmm. So, where can I find out what the standard tension on a set of medium 5 XLs is? That would at least give me a hint as to what the difference might be.

    I might have to try the TIs as well. I go through the XLs pretty fast nyself, but I play pretty hard as well.

    Thanks everyone so far!
  18. Stone Soup

    Stone Soup

    Dec 3, 2012
    Dunlop Nickels tickle my ears just right. I used D'Addario for many years and still go back once in a while, but not for long.
  19. go to bassstringsonline.com, go to electric bass strings by brand, then go to d'addario, then xl nickel roundwound, then to the first square(build your own custom set). At the bottom, below the string sizes with the check boxes, there is a chart showing the size of the strings they offer and the tension required to achieve each note available for each string. You can use that chart to see what tension each string in your set has on it. Then use that information to see what strings you may want to include in your own custom set. They offer balanced tension sets for both 4 and 5 string basses. Check them out, they may already have a set that has what you want in it. The guy that runs bassstringsonline is a supporting member of talkbass, seems like a pretty good guy.
  20. I wanna try their 45-107 set when Im done with my current string inventory. The last set I got felt like the G and A were normal, the D was a lot stiffer than the rest and the E was a noodle.
  21. pickles

    pickles Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    Slinkys, nickel lo riders, dunlop nickels, and XLs are very similar to me but each have a slightly different vibe. Id try all of those and settle in with what you like best. Could also try sadowsy and fender nickels, those are more distinct from the others. There really is no better in this range, just different.

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