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Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by xxajr8xx, Oct 3, 2005.
i was wondering what brands you use and/or recomend?
and if you can links to were to buy them
For some reason, I love the Fender brand of strings. I haven;t tried too many different brands of strings (I've tried maybe 5 or 6 diffeent brands). The Fender strings just seem to work the best with my Fender basses and with my fingers.
It's a matter of personal taste IMO. I think it's complicated to talk about the "best brand" (as is to talk about the "best bassist"). To me, the best strings I've tried are DR strings "Hi-Beams", but unfortunately they aren't available where I live. I bought a pack once through the Net and after shipping and customs they turned to be a bit expensive, but they're GREAT. The best strings I can find here are La Bella "Hard Rockin' Steels". They're definitely much better and much cheaper than D'addario XLs, which have the best reputation in my town. Anyway, the best place for shopping strings online is www.juststrings.com, AFAIK.
DR strings are nice. I love the way they sound. But, I don't use them. I have had absolutely awesome luck with Dean Markley SR 2000s. They sound great with a bright, ringing tone. Amazing clarity, and they last forever.
Another + For DR...I don't know if I'll ever buy another set of anything else...I was restringing my P-Bass with Fat Beams(Marcus Miller Sig 45-105) and the G broke...I emailed DR and not only did they send me a whole set to replace them, they sent me 2....They're the longest lasting strings that I've ever played with...And for the price where I live(20 for a 4 string set) The only better value is Vinci, and I'd say I'll keep those on my 5, the 4 and soon-to-be-purchased 6 will have the Fats on them...DR ROCKS!
I've played a lot of strings, and I tend to float between D'Addario and Labella for most of my use, but have had plenty of experience, mostly with GHS, Ernie Ball, LaBella and D'Addario, some experience with TI's and DR, and keep coming back to mostly D'Addario
I like D'Addario XL's for Nickel, DR Lowriders for Stainless, and Labella for Flats.
I don't think that there is a "best" brand, but there are so many quality brands of strings out there, it's mainly finding what you like on indivudual basses.
Here are my favorite strings...
DR Low Riders (tighter than hibeam but just right tension for me)
DR Hi Beams (best for slapping)
Rotosound Jazz Bass 77 Heavy gauge (brightest flats ever. sounds awesome with pick)
La Bella Deep Talking bass (really need LaBella to get the Jamerson sound. they're hard to deal with though)
On a side note, I absolutely hate D'Addarios. Every string i've tried whether it be chromes, pro steels, to their Helicores for the double bass have dissappointed me. I'm never wild about the tone, except for their flats, and they always seem to go dead far too quickly. For some reason, all the strings i've ever broken on electric or upright bass have been D'Addarios. I don't know why they are the most popular. Maybe it's because they are inexpensive? IMHO, DR makes the best electric bass string that i've seen so far and they are getting more and more popular and available. I think BG string manufacturers should take a cue from the DB string manufacturers and realize that the best strings are always hand. I am willing to pay the extra cost if it gets me a good string.
For me, it's all TI's (Thomastik Infeld), all the time. Their Jazz Flats are the best strings I've ever tried, and last longer than any others I've used. I've had them on basses for *years* (literally). They actually sound better with age!
IMHO, YMMV, JM.02, etc. etc....
You have to experiment and find what works best for you.
For me, I've probably gone through 1,000 sets of bass strings in 28 years, and I swear by Rotosound. YMMV.
Thomastik has won me ower...I use the JR344 and JF344, I also like the XL's and labellas...
My favourites are:
GHS Boomers (My no.1 string!)
Stainless steel roundwounds:
D'addario ProSteels (Second best)
Ernie Ball Flatwounds (My favourite flats)
Fender 9050 Flats
I'm a big fan of DR Fat-Beams. All DRs are great though, IMHO. GHS make great strings, and for piccolo you can't beat D'Addario. TI flats are my favortie and La Bella makes my favorite tapewounds. Rotosounds are great for bright, detailed Rush-influenced sound but have somewhat dismal life. Elixirs last a crazy long time and the Nanowebs sound and feel great too. But thats just me two cents.
I know more people that have tried and stuck with (for years) Rotosound roundwounds than any other string. I love them: punchy lows, zingy highs . . .
+1 for the rotosounds. I use them on all my basses except for the P. I dont think ill be changing anytime soon either.
I find that Rotosound Swing Bass 66s have always sounded particularly thin to me. not enough fundamental. Even though they are probably the most popular BG string ever, their only claim to fame would be Jaco's and Stanley Clarke's sound. And they both had very bright tones with not a lot of lows. I think they are good if that's the sound you're looking for, but if you are going for a more ensemble sound, I would look elsewhere. Again, I think DR's roundwounds are all you ever need for rounds. And for flats probably TIs or LaBella
How about John Paul Jones? Or Chris Squire? I think its a pretty huge part of both of their sounds.
I belive that JPJ uses the PSD99s which are an even thinner sounding string. If fact I think it's the piano wire that I don't like about rotos. Chris Squire uses Swing Bass 66s but I don't really listen to Yes or lots of Prog Rock for that matter so I don't know his sound
Dean Markley Blue Steels. Ive been using Blue Steels since they came out and Ive found them durable and long-lasting. They don't break easily and they don't retain their brightness for a long time. Rotosounds are great too. D'Addario's were my first strings and I still use the half rounds on my fretless.
It all depends. For live it doesnt really matter. Hot rooms will kill strings in 1 night. But for recording DR is the best . When my band used to tour with Green day mike always bought what ever was cheapest. New strings every night.
My advice for people that sweat is wear wrist bands. Metal wasnt cool when I was touring but its cool again so were the bands to prevent sweat from ruing stuff. I got a bass set up at esp and he thought my p bass was submerged in water from the sweat barnicles.
later, Brian ( Jughead's Revenge)