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Best B string

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Marcus Willett, Jul 1, 2005.


  1. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    OK, this may have been covered, but I couldn't get any meaningful matches with a search. I recently came across a great deal on Smith strings, so I've now got about 25 sets. All 4 string tho, and I need 5's. I've got several DR low B strings, and using them with the Smiths works OK, but the DR's tend to have an almost....ummm....kinda "hollow" sound, if that makes any sense (HI-Beams). I'm gonna run out of my DR B's long before my Smiths so I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions for a good solid roundwound low B string.

    For the obvious response, I have used Smith 5 string sets before, but always found the B strings to be way too dead and lifeless (no offense Ken; I like the strings fine but the B just doesn't work for me). The other strings usually sound fine, but the B just ain't happenin'. Again, it works allright with a DR B, but I was hoping for something a little different.


    Any ideas....?
     
  2. Blues Cat

    Blues Cat Supporting Member

    May 28, 2005
    Katy, Tx
    Pro steel .130. What kinda bass do you have? Thru body or piezo saddle go w/ tapered.
     
  3. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    Got about 7 different basses. I don't like tapered tho. Who makes the "Pro Steels"?
     
  4. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    +1 on ProSteels..

    ProSteels are D'Addario's current Stainless Steel Roundwound line.

    I use a .130 on my Lakland and love it. I string through the body with a non-taper core without a problem.

    In general, I find the ProSteels to be bright without sounding harsh. The B has a nice full sound with lots of clarity.
     
  5. ryla

    ryla

    Jun 17, 2004
    auckland new zealand
    pedulla strings pack a pretty nice b
     
  6. I have a D'addario's 6 string set on my Carvin LB76F and low B sounds very faint, the rest of the strings sound great but the low B is terrible, i figured i must of had a defective string, and bought another single string and it sounded better then before but still not as good as the ernie ball string i use on my 5 string
     
  7. I've allways found the DR Hi-Beam b-string to be the best sounding, but if you want something a little less hollow but still as clear as hi-beams (atleast I think they're clear) Fat-Beams has a good low B. Fuller but still not muddy.
     
  8. tappel

    tappel

    May 31, 2003
    Long Island, NY
    Sure, don't we all have ideas about B strings? :)
    This is just *so* subjective, but here goes... In general, I prefer a conventional .130 B string; not tapered or exposed core. However, one of my favorite string makers, La Bella, uses only tapered construction an all of their B strings (even flats and tapewounds). Go figure.

    I recently put a set of Rotosounds (stainless) on my Spector Rebop5. That B string sounds great. I've also had good luck with D'Addario's and DR's, but the Roto's really impressed me. Of course, YMMV and all other caveats apply.

    Tom
     
  9. chaosMK

    chaosMK

    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Hi-fi into an old tube amp
    I liked the B string on DR lo-riders. it is pretty controlled, whereas with other brands I've tried the low be comes out way powerful and makes me want to use a compressor.
     
  10. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    Good info guys, thanks. I'm gonna try the ProSteels and see if they help. The DRs are good, I was just looking for something a little more consistent. Which leads me to this quote. I actually usually use a regular gauge set with a .120 B. Though it demands greater control, I find it's more in tune and not so huge sounding (which a lot of B strings are to me) that it bugs me. Ideally, I want my fretted E (6th fret) to be the same volume at least (if not the same tone, but that's another issue) as my open E. I've found a .120 helps me in this regard.
     
  11. bassman314

    bassman314 I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process... Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2005
    Bay Area, CA
    You drop the B-string to a B-flat?

    If the .120 does it for you, go for it! I think Pro-steels come in a .120. Give D'addario an email.
     
  12. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    My bad...I meant 5th fret E.
     
  13. pickles

    pickles Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    I've had good (but dated) experiences with the Smith Rock Masters B, but other than that I gotta vote Sadowsky (R.Cocco), even though you said that you don't like taper cores, the sadowsky B is the best I've used. Its a .130, and both the nickel and stanless ones sound and feel killer.

    Switching from Sadowsky to DR was "eye-opening", since I've always liked the DRs ... but by comparison the high beam was hollow, ringy, and had poor pitch focus.
     
  14. maurilio

    maurilio Musician - Owner at Mo's Shop - Tech at Nordstrand Supporting Member

    May 25, 2003
    Studio City+Redlands, CA
    Endorsing artist: Nordstrand - Genzler Amplification - Sadowsky - Dunlops Strings - DR Strings
    +1

    Mo'
     
  15. Where can Sadowsky strings be bought? Any places in Europe?
     
  16. maurilio

    maurilio Musician - Owner at Mo's Shop - Tech at Nordstrand Supporting Member

    May 25, 2003
    Studio City+Redlands, CA
    Endorsing artist: Nordstrand - Genzler Amplification - Sadowsky - Dunlops Strings - DR Strings
  17. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Another vote for Sadowsky over DR. I'm guessing the Sadowsky B strings are better because they are tapered.

    That leads to what I was originally going to post: I've had the best luck with tapered strings sets, even if only the B is tapered. I've liked Smith Tapercores, LaBella Hard Rockin' Steels, and (as noted) Sadowsky rounds.

    I tried the Sadowsky flats which also have a tapered B... they sound pretty good for what they are but I'm a roundwound guy.
     
  18. Sorry to Hijack, but would you guys describe the windings on the sadowsky bright nickels to be smoothe? (compared to lets say D'adarrio XL's which I have on now) On my fretless I prefer bright, defined strings but for string noise reasons and feel prefer strings with smaller windings.
     
  19. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    Just tried the Pro Steel B. Very nice, much better pitch focus and tighter sound than the DR. Sounds more consistent with the Smiths too. Might eventually try using Pro Steel sets, but it's gonna take 14-18 months for me to go through all my Smiths.
     
  20. MODNY

    MODNY Guest

    Nov 9, 2004
    labella super steps