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.045/.065/.085/.105 or .050/.070/.085/.105?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by terribilino, Oct 4, 2009.

  1. terribilino


    Nov 22, 2008
    I've got D'Addario round wounds on my bass, but I'm finding them a bit too thin for my tastes - especially the G string. The E string is also seems loose, which may be a set-up problem, but I'm hoping the higher gauge will tighten things up in general and make it more comfortable to play.

    I got the bass used, and the previous owner had EXL 190s on it, which is .040/.060/.080/.100. I've been looking at my options, and there seem to be two medium gauges I could move up to: the EXL 165SL (045/.065/.085/.105) or the EXL 160 (.050/.070/.085/.105).

    I'm tending towards the thicker EXL 160, but would that be too big a jump from the .040? I don't really have a style of playing, I'm still learning, but I'm playing along with all the motown and finger funk tunes I can find. I'm also starting to toy with slap. Would there be any reason to go for one over the other?

    I've also noticed that there's a short scale, medium scale, long scale and super long scale for the EXL 160. What the hell is that all about? My bass is a Leduc, specs here: http://pagesperso-orange.fr/leduc/oldsite/en/_pad1.htm

  2. becker4567


    Jul 26, 2008
    hmmmm lots of questions, and you'll get lots of answers. Here's my 2 cents worth. I don't think you'll find too much difference between the strings you've metioned. A little bit, but if you want a major change in tension, try going to flats. Talkbass has a great review section here, so check it out. The scale refers to length of the neck. Short scales are usually 28"-30", medium scales (like Hofner's violin bass) is 32", long (or regular) scale is 34" and super long scale is 36" or even 38". Without getting out the metric conversion chart, your bass looks like a 34", so whatever strings you get, make sure you get the right length.
  3. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    I can feel the difference in tension between .040, .045 and .050 sets. My favorite is .045. The .040 set is great if you want to "fly" on the bass and the .050 will give you a fatter/punchier tone. Actually, lots of virtuoso players (Victor Wooten and Mark King come to mind) use very light gauge strings, which definitely help them for the kind of stuff they play.

    Then I recommend the .045, which is the regular/medium gauge.
    okcrum likes this.
  4. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    Neither set is balanced very well... the .045 is the closest of the two.

    A better set would be .045 .060 .080 .105
  5. Jaco who?

    Jaco who?

    May 20, 2008
    You might be interested in the Ken Smith Bass Burners. I hate skinny G's too, but also thick E strings. They make a 50-70-80-100 set that's intriguing, but hardly a reason in and of itself to choose a string.
  6. terribilino


    Nov 22, 2008
    I'm really interested in trying out flats, so much so that I'm planning on to buying a Yamaha BB414 to put flats on. I would like to keep the round wounds on this one for slap, though. Someone in another thread ages ago said the D'Addario chromes worked just fine, so I might as well stick to them. They're easy to find where I live. The ECB82 Set Long Scale (50-105) looks like it would do the trick.

    Long scale, then (860mm = 33.8583 inches).

    That's important info, thanks!
  7. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Sucks with bass that strings are sooo expensive that if you make a mistake and get a set you don't like you're out $$$... I can't help except to suggest that the only way you can know for sure is to try them out. There are some sets that have a .047 G string - look for the Will Lee signature sets.
  8. JTE

    JTE Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    I used to use D'Addario 50/70/85/105 sets. I used them in the XL nickle series (XL-160), the original nickle Half-Rounds (HR-72), and the stainless (XLS-570), and the SloWound series. At some point around 1995 I tried the XL-165 specifically to balance the sound on a pre-EB StingRay. I found I really liked the 45/695/85/105 a lot better and wound up using that gauge on all my basses.

  9. Personally I use .045-.100 on al my long scales (Ric4001, Ric2030, Fender Standard Jazz) and I have .50-.105 on my short/medium scales (Danelectro Longhorn, Jay Turser Violin Bass), but I'm thinking about either .45-.100 flats or half rounds on the Beatle bass . When the G is a .40 I tend to bend the string too easy, especially when playing octaves. I also believe that the lighter gauge strings don't "sit in the mix" as well, live or studio. The sound gets a little thin and transparent.
  10. Are .045 round and .050 flats - bass strings (G) slightly the same in diameter? I want to know before I purchase so I won't alter the nut's slot for the G string. Thank you very much.
  11. ixlramp


    Jan 25, 2005
    Why bump an 8 year old unrelated thread?
    .045 and .050 are the diameter of the strings, so your question is already answered.
  12. Hounddog409


    Oct 27, 2015
    I use 050/.070/.085/.105 from DR on my Carvin LB70. have to order as singles on basstrings online, but works for me.
    Pbassmanca and bonruiz like this.
  13. Hello Hounddog409, when you used.050 did you widen the nut spacing or was the difference minimal? Did it fit well? Thank you very much.
  14. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    Do you have a musical instrument store near you? Go there and buy an electric guitar string set with a .05 low E, if you find it, or a .049/.052 if you don't. (Alternatively, get a single string if they have it available.)
    Insert the string in the G slot in your bass: does it fit? If it does, there is your answer.
    bonruiz likes this.
  15. Thank you very much for this very practical solution Mr. HaspAsSard.
    HaphAsSard likes this.
  16. I've used the 40/100's on certain shortscale basses. They are nice and light and very playable. That said , I noticed too that the D and G strings sounded a little thin.

    The 45/105's are o.k at times. That's my goto gauge generally for rounds.

    I often end up swapping out the D and G strings to get a fatter tone overall. I have lots of these strings around in different gauges. It's not the low end I care about (E and A). They usually sound pretty fat on any set.

    I would get two sets. 45/105 and 50/105. See which set serves your needs better.

    Or you could get individual strings based on the advice in above posts.
    bonruiz likes this.
  17. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    You got me curious though! Please report back if it fit or not, and what you've decided to do. :)
  18. Hello Mr. HasAsZard, I finally installed my American made Fender Flatwound (9050ML .050 - .100) Medium Light set on my AMERICAN vintage 1972 Fender Jazz Bass. The strings fit well on my existing nut slots and I think they have the same tension pull as a DR Marcus Miller Fat Beams. The relief remained the same and I did not adjust the heights nor the bridge tunings,the intonation and radius are correct Fender specs. They are absolutely great strings. I am happy they fit without modifications. I hate adjusting truss rods on a vintage bass.

    Fender 9050 ML. Fender 9050 ML back. The tone and feel were very impressive. I should have used them decades ago. The intonation is spot on and no dead spots. All the notes are very clear and I am very satisfied with Fender 9050 MLs. I don't think I will go back to rounds anymore. The ease of playing is great just right for what I am after for. I will play my bass every day and run through the whole range of chords and lines to see how well they will improve over a short period of time. All the Best! Bon Ruiz.
    HaphAsSard and dwm74 like this.
  19. Tension across strings is wildly unbalanced with those 0.050" sets.
    bonruiz likes this.
  20. tylerwylie


    Jan 5, 2008
    Dunwoody, GA
    .045 .060 .080 .105 the way to go!
    bonruiz likes this.

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