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Best Strings for Mwah on MIM Fretless

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by bgavin, May 12, 2002.

  1. I have just acquired a MIM J fretless. It is getting a set of DiMarzio Model J pickups wired for series/parallel and a J-Retro active preamp.

    Anybody got any good suggestions for strings that provide the maximum mwah?

    The tone I'm trying to get is Mark Egan on the tune St. Teresa at positions 1:42 and 1:47. I reall enjoy his solid bottom and nice mwah tone. And yes, I know he plays a Pedulla.

    Link to St. Teresa MP3
  2. Thomastik-Infeld Jazz-Flats
  3. I'm not an upright player, and I haven't tried the TIs yet, but, to me Rotosound 77s give a fairly close upright sound. And yes, I have a MIM fretless Jazz. I don't know which Fender strings came stock on the bass, but, IMHO the Rotos were a big improvement in sustain, tone and mwah. They have a different feel than the Fender strings; a little more flexible.

    Mike J.
  4. Fender uses 9050M stainless flats on the fretless models. I understand these are thick and heavy strings. My fretless is still in transit, so I have no experience with them yet.

    I've been polling experienced fretless players, and the TI flats keeps coming back again and again. I have TI on my RB5 now, and they are pretty sweet sounding, and wonderful to play. The decreased tension is in the upper strings (not the B) and is not a problem for me at all.

    The problem I have with Rotos is they are incredibly high tension.
  5. I've a set of Tomastiks on the way for my Yammy RBX270F: it currently carries the stock Yamaha strings.

    I've never played the TIs but have ordered them on the strength of recommendation.

  6. pc


    Apr 4, 2000
    Montreal QC
    mwah on flats?
  7. The MP3 above is Mark Egan on a Pedulla Buzz. Pedulla specifically recommends not using rounds on their basses because they sound awful and chew up the finger board. I don't have any info on what Egan used on that recording, but I sure like the sound of it.

    [ edited for accuracy ]

    Pedulla says don't use stainless rounds... nickel rounds are OK.
  8. rsautrey

    rsautrey Inactive

    Jul 27, 2000
    From what I've read, Egan uses D'Addario EXL nickel wound strings. This is what he endorses...Now as to what he uses when he records, it could be different.
    trothwell likes this.
  9. lol... if I remember correctly, my mid 80's Ric 4003 owner's manual said the same thing.

    Mark Egan = rounds on a coated board. I get good mwah from DR Hi beams
  10. Jon Burnet

    Jon Burnet

    Jan 21, 2001
    Memphis, TN
    if i understand right the mwah sound is the sound of the string eating at the board. be it graphite rose wood or dimond kote whatever. at least that is what i gather. that being said i use dr lo riders on mine and i mwah for days...but my fretboard shows it.
  11. eli

    eli Mad showoff 7-stringer and Wish lover Supporting Member

    Dec 12, 1999
    NW suburban Chicago
    I've had Elixirs on my Conk GT7 fretless ("Ebanol" phenolic board) for over a year and can see only finish dulling, not actual wear.

    You get the strings you want -- I used nickel rounds (D'Addario XL's) on my Carvin ebony fretless board for 6 years without it needing a replaning -- that give you the sound you want, and then you spend $100 every 5 years or so to have the board leveled. small price to pay for the tone you really want anyway. It's an MIM J, for heaven's sake, not a Maserati. Use it!

    I love Egan's sound -- him and Caron are my tone idols -- and IMHO the closest you're gonna get is with D'Addario XL's or Elixirs, which ARE D'Addario XL's with the coating added.
  12. pc


    Apr 4, 2000
    Montreal QC
    yep... AFAIK the mwah comes from the fretboard being hit by the string windings. Its a kind of a fret noise, but instead hit only the fret spot, it hits 2-3 inches directly on the fretboard (depending on your action)

    ok, this is kinda wierd, but its the best explanation i can get after sleeping only 2 hours last night :D
  13. Then this is why they all say you must have low action...?
  14. eli

    eli Mad showoff 7-stringer and Wish lover Supporting Member

    Dec 12, 1999
    NW suburban Chicago
    To mwah, yes. Precisely. pc is dead right.
  15. alembicbones


    Nov 10, 2000
    Seattle, WA

    I've tried both TI's and Elixirs on my SR5 fretless and found the growly tone I was looking for came from the Elixirs.

    On a side note, I just took those same TI's (very little usage) and put them on my Alembic Europa 5 fretted. They really sound fantastic on that bass.

    Best Wishes,
  16. I played the new MIM J fretless most of last night's gig, and really enjoyed the 9050M strings. I wasn't getting what I thought was "mwah" but they played nice.

    The amusing part is, my band dislikes the tone of my RB5 with either rounds or TI flats, but they like the sound of the J fretless. Go figure.

    It's also looking like I might need something brighter than the 9050M on the fretless.

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