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Attention Kay Users

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by ElMon, Jan 23, 2005.

  1. ElMon

    ElMon Supporting Member

    May 30, 2004
    Oklahoma City, OK
    I have a 54 M-1, and I'd like to move over to gut strings, albeit with a steel wrapped E string (possibly the A too). My signal chain is as follows: David gage pickup, monster cable, Aguilar DB 680, QSC 850, 1 or 2 Aggie 112's. This amp rig combats the muddiness often associated with Kays (and the Gage for that matter). Basically, I set the frequency sweeps on the extreme highs and lows for each side, and It's fullrange upright nirvana! Also, the Kay has a rosewood board.
    I've poured over posts on strings, but I'm really only interested in real world experience from actual Kay users. Price isn't an issue, but quality is. Thanks for the help.
  2. ctxbass

    ctxbass Supporting Member

    Nov 6, 2003
    Central Texas
    It depends on your bass.

    I had a 62 Kay that did not respond well with gut strings. The top was too thick and stiff. The higher tension of steel strings brought out the best in that bass.
    My 37 Kay that responds very well to low tension. The top is thinner.

    I read somewhere that as steel strings started becoming popular, Kay began making thicker tops. If your bass is a 54, chances are that the top is one of the thinner ones. But even with carved basses, some respond well with gut and some don't.

    As far as quality strings, Pirastro Chorda D&G are the best plain gut strings I've played. The Chorda E&A are very big roundwound gut strings, and the E can be tough to play. They will probably take their toll on your rosewood fingerboard. I play Pirastro Olive E&A with the Chorda D&G, and they blend well. They are flatwound, and won't put a rut in your FB as quickly.
  3. abaguer


    Nov 27, 2001
    Milford, NJ
    I'm surprised you're using Aguilar 112s to combat muddiness. My experience with them is they have a lot of lows and low mids which were too dark for my Kay. I went with Acme and Euphonic Audio and got a much cleaner sound.
  4. ElMon

    ElMon Supporting Member

    May 30, 2004
    Oklahoma City, OK
    Thanks for the advice on the strings, and as well for the info on Kay bass history. Strangely enough, with the full range clarity of the DB 680, I get an insane amount of detail out of the Aggie 112. Maybe it's the QSC. ??? Anyways, thanx for the info.
  5. Packinmn


    Jun 21, 2003
    Nashville, TN
    I had a very similar experience with the GS112. Although a nice sounding cabinet, it had too much color to accurately reproduce the sound of my Kay with a Bassmax pickup.