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Alternatives to Rotosound flats

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by BassyBill, Jan 31, 2006.

  1. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    I've done a search, but thought I'd post a new thread as what I'm after is pretty specific.

    I'm just beginning to enjoy flats (last couple of months) after years of playing exclusively on rounds. I put some Roto flats on one of my Jazz basses and they're great except for one thing - the E string is a bit "weaker" than I like, doesn't have that real bottom end thump as strong as I would want it. This wasn't the case with rounds on the same bass, the E string was great, one of the main reasons I like the bass so much.

    Anybody else have similar experience with Rotosound flats? Anybody got any recommendations for similar strings that may give me a real strong E string again?

  2. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    I've used Rotosound flats on multiple basses at different times and currently have a set on one of my Bongos. I've never once experienced an E string that was significantly softer or quieter than the other strings. Methinks you have a dead string. I would see about getting a replacement string.
  3. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Good call! You know, stupid as it sounds the thought of this being a faulty string never even entered my head until I read your post. I've never had one before from Rotosound (or anyone else for that matter), I'll mail them and see what they say. I kind of hope that's what it is as I really like everything else about these strings.

    Thanks for pointing out what maybe should have seemed obvious. :D

    (smacks forehead)
  4. 7flat5


    Nov 28, 2003
    Upstate NY
    You might also have a less-than-ideal mating of the new string with the bridge. I had this problem once when I changed string types, and it acted like a dead string. I reinstalled it with attention to the break angle at the bridge and all was well.
  5. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    Heh. If we each had all of the answers, there'd be no need for Talkbass, right?

  6. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    Yep. It's always important to make sure the string isn't twisted from the bridge to the nut, too.
  7. amper


    Dec 4, 2002
    Rotosound has three different guages of flats. Heavy, medium and light. Try the heavy set. RS77LE.
  8. Beefbass

    Beefbass Guest

    Feb 4, 2001
    I've gone back to Fender for flats. I'm using the 9050ML's on my Nordstrand equipped P bass deluxe. I'm really digging them!
  9. RSchuster


    Jan 27, 2006
    Alexandria, VA
    I had RS77 strings on my bass at one point . . . they sounded absolutely fantastic, but I had the same problem as you did: the E string had significantly less output than the other three strings. Apparently, Rotosound is notorious for short string-life and/or dead-on-arrival strings. It might just be bad luck. If the pickups or pickup poles on your bass are adjustable, you could try raising the E-string side a bit . . .
  10. BassyBill

    BassyBill The smooth moderator... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2005
    West Midlands UK
    Emailed Rotosound Tuesday PM to ask what they might come up with - got a "read" receipt almost immediately, but no response yet. I'll wait and see if they send me another string to try. I've used Swing Bass rounds for nearly 30 years, but I'm not buying another set of flats until I know whether or not this was a rogue string. Not a major problem I know, but I would appreciate their input.
  11. RD


    Jun 17, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    I use TI flats, strung exactly the way they say you shouldn't. They are on a Lakland Glaub through the body. They seem fine, but don't get alot of use lately. The tension is low compared to most flats, and are not like the big fat flat's I've used in the past. All in all, I like them, once they've warn in for awhile.
  12. Baryonyx

    Baryonyx Banned

    Jul 11, 2005
    Marathon Man
    I've had good results using Rotosound Steve Harris flats. TI flats sound a little too...modern, not the classic sound I was looking for with flats. I had strung my fretless with some flats, and I didn't think they were giving me enough "oomph" and thump. I switched them out for some Roto Steve Harris flats (you don't need to like the player to use his strings!) and was instantly impressed. They're a bit heavier than your average flatwound, but they have so much more presence without the added brightness of TI flats.

    As I have found, if your hands can manage the extra welly needed to mkae them really work for you, I cannot recommend a better "classic" flatwound string.