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Direct A/B of TI Jazz Flats and DA Chrome Flats

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by bgavin, Sep 11, 2003.

  1. Has anybody done a direct A/B comparision between a set of TI Flats and a set of DA Chrome Flats?

    I'm curious about tone differences. Somebody mentioned the TI Flats being very "middy". I've been running TI Flats on my P bass since I bought it, and have changed pickups twice already due to over "middy" sound, and loss of thump.
  2. Flatwound

    Flatwound Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2000
    San Diego
    I'm following you, Bruce!

    OK, seriously, while I didn't A/B the strings "directly," I have used TI's and Chromes on the same bass, same bridge, same amp, etc. and can tell you some of the differences. This is an inexpensive Washburn XS-1, which is a plywood bass with a 24-fret maple/rosewood neck, and a single P-pickup about 5/8" closer to the bridge than a real P. I have installed a Badass II bridge and a Seymour Duncan SPB-2 pickup which seems to be a good fit for this bass.

    I think many TI flat users would agree that TI's have a strong midrange emphasis. This works well for a lot of folks, adding definition and helping the bass to be heard. However, as you have noticed, the SPB-2 is a middy pickup. The combination of the two did not work well for me, being more nasal than I liked. The Chromes also have a strong midrange, but it seems to "peak" a bit lower than with the TI's. So for me, on the above mentioned bass, the Chromes have a more balanced sound with deeper lows.

    Over at the Dudepit, there are some TI fanatics, and they report getting good thump from them on Stingrays (Bovinehost if I'm not mistaken) and whatnot. I'm not aware of anyone using them with the SPB-2, but those people are probably out there somewhere.
  3. I like the sound of flat wounds, but more important is how much I like the feel.

    The TI Flats on my P bass have been running strong for 2.5 years now. The Fender 9050 flats also had a nice feel. They were on my MIM J fretless when I first bought it.

    I've been holding off on doing string and pickup experimenting due to having no high quality means of tracking the changes. But, I've recently picked up some equipment that will let me create studio quality instrument-to-computer recordings.
  4. pyrohr


    Aug 28, 2001
    Pakistani compound
    I have a/b'd chromes and t.i's and my take is the t.i. flats are a smoother sounding string with a better balance overall. I had 3 basses, a fretless jazz, a sting p, and a MIM pbass with t.i's flats until the MIM p got the chromes for the 2nd time. It seems to me now that the MIM p gets even less playing time now, maybe it's the tension of the strings I don't know. Overall the chromes are decent strings, I just like the t.i's more.
  5. 59jazz

    59jazz Infinite Rider on the Big Dogma Supporting Member

    I haven't tried the Chromes yet, but the TI's sound and feel great on my version of a '65 P with Seymour SPB-1's.

  6. I wouldn't call this an exact a/b comparison, but I've used both the DA Chrome flats and the TI Jazz flats on my Ibanez BTB405. The DA's replaced the standard strings that came with the bass and they were a major improvement. I had heard so many good comments about the TI's that I decided to give them a try as well and have been using them for over a year now. I believe the DA's to be good strings, but I give the edge to the TI's. Although, just to satisfy my curiosity and to see if my opinion may have changed, I've been considering putting the DA's back on as an experiment (perhaps a real a/b test). Anyway, as I remember, I preferred the feel of the TI's and the sound of its B string. All my TI strings sound balanced, not one of them is duller than the others. From what I recall, the B on the DA's produced a slight volume drop compared to their EADG strings. Also, with the original strings and the DA Chromes, I couldn't get the intonation set right on the B string. Even with the bridge set to max, the B was still a little flat at the twelfth fret. After putting on the TI Jazz flats, I was able to set the intonation of the B perfectly (????).
  7. gbenner


    May 20, 2001
    ocean, new jersey
    Bruce, I've been wanting to try the Chromes myself, and I havent yet, BUT I did a/b the TI Flats with Pyramid Gold Flats. They sound a lot like the TI's but with a LOT more thump (I know thats what you want),You and I play a lot of blues and these are my new strings, they are a lot like the TI's but I like them a lot better. They are 50 bucks a set, so if you dont like them I'll trade you a set of Fender flats .50 to .100 used for about one week, and a set of TI Powerbass, also used for one week, hey I'll even give you a set of 6 month old TI flats. But I really think if you try the Pyramid flats you wont take me up on my offer. Bruce give them a shot, if you don't like them I'll send you these three sets for the Pyramids.

  8. Yeah, thump is what is missing from my P.

    I think the DiMarzio DP146 is part of it, because the P used to really thump with the stock pickup and TI Flats.

    What kind of life do you get from the Pyramids? I've got 2.5 years on the TI Flats and they are still going strong.

    Thanks for the kind offer. Not going to do anything except research right now. Blew the GAS wad on a locker full of mics and Aardvark Q10 DAW card.
  9. gbenner


    May 20, 2001
    ocean, new jersey
    "What kind of life do you get from the Pyramids? I've got 2.5 years on the TI Flats and they are still going strong"

    Bruce, I've only had them on for about 2 month's now. I have 3 G&L's and I only used TI flats, I was not happy with my L2000, It didn't cut through the mix like my SB2 does. So I started looking at strings. I settled on the Rotosound 77 flats for the L2K, they are too bright out of the box but after a few weeks they settle in with a nice growl and thump.
    The Pyramids replaced a set of 6 month old TI's on my LB100 (G&L's P bass), One of the guy's at the Pit loves them on his ASAT. The first thing I noticed when I put them on was the sound was almost identical to the TI's right out of the box, and the TI's had 6 months on them. The pyramids settled in with a nice thump and a great tone. Everyone in the band said they liked the thump of the Pyramids over the TI's. I've heard they last as long as the TI's also, hey what flats don't last. I might also replace the 1 1/2 year old TI's on my SB2 with them. The Pyramids seem to go well with the P bass sound. I might try some Chromes first though. Long answer to a short question

  10. Much obliged, thanks. I think Kurt K has experience with Pyramid also.

    I want my P to have that classic P thump.
  11. Tbass66


    Mar 15, 2002
    I agree with gbenner about the pryimids although there seems to be world of difference putting them next to the TI'S although that depends much on the bass your using i guess..pryamids are about the same gauge as the TI's but have alot more tension and alot more thump and they do last forever. I have had the current set i'm using well over a year..they have been on and off my ric 4003 put on other basses and they still sound great and they still strobe up well on the strobe tuner even though ive played the hell out of them :bassist:
  12. My friend brought his newly acquired 1999 MIA P-bass to my gig last night. It is strung with Sunbeams, and sounded very nice. But... no thump.

    I was surprised at this, thinking the stock MIA pickup would be inclined to thump... evidently not with roundwounds.

    He is going to install a set of TI Flats, so we will see if that restores the thump.

    [ edit ]

    George, I just took a little trip through TB Search Land, and read a wealth of info on the Pyramid Gold Flats. The gauges are published on the Just Strings web site, so I added them to my spread sheet.

    I was a bit concerned about the G string being only 0.040" sized. That seems a bit anemic to me, considering the others are the classic sizes.

    Just Strings offers them for $50 as of this writing.

    Some comments I noted were about the tone being between flats and rounds, and a comment about not as smooth as other flats. No big deal on smoothness. Another comment was the Pyramids thump like the Fender 9050s, but with better tone. Long life seems to be a consistent comment. That offsets the $50 entry fee.
  13. Flatwound

    Flatwound Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2000
    San Diego
    Bruce, if/when you try the Pyramids, I'd like to hear your reactions.
  14. I picked up an Aardvark Q10 recording interface, and am in the process of building a DAW to support it. I figure to use the Q10 plus my Countryman 85 DI to generate high quality recordings of string and pickup changes.

    I don't have the spare $50 to drop on a set of Pyramids, so that will have to wait. I do have sets of 9050M, DA Chrome Flats, and TI Powerbass. I've been holding off on replacing the TI Flats on the P, and the SIT stainless on the L1500, until I can get good recordings of each.
  15. Hey Bgavin, let me know what you figure out. I believe you know where I stand with these strings.

    What equipment have you purchased to do your string test with?

  16. No equipment purchased. Just hacking in a riff from Bouree, etc, to the recorder, then listening to the playback.

    Things are grim in the computer industry ever since they exported all our jobs to India. I have no spare cash for non-essentials.
  17. gbenner


    May 20, 2001
    ocean, new jersey
    Bruce, if you want to read a little more on the Pyramids check the strings section over on the pit. There's a few good posts there also.

  18. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    Hey Bruce -
    any update to your JF / 9050 / Chromes comparison ?

    To my ear the Fender Flats (not sure of the number but it is the Stainless Steel set in .105 to .045) have a lot of thump, but no ring. JF's and Chromes have lot's of extra harmonic content going and ring like all day which on a fretless is cool, for tracking rootsy stuff is more annnoying than anything.
  19. No time yet. I'm up to my eyeballs in trying to make my computer support business fly.
  20. 4Mal

    4Mal Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2002
    Columbia River Gorge
    I hear that. My day gig is as a consultant for an LA based software company. What's your support gig ficused on ? Hardware ? Applications ? Databases ? OS ?