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DR Hi- Beams

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by 59jazz, Nov 3, 2005.

  1. 59jazz

    59jazz Infinite Rider on the Big Dogma Supporting Member

    Thumbing thru the 12/04 string review issue of BP, I noticed that the DR HI Beams were listed as being "coarse" in feel. I stopped using HB's 6 years ago, and I don't remember them being coarse. To me they felt smooth and supple.........Is it me, or is it them? :eyebrow:
  2. I think they are some of the smoothest stainless steels out there. Not smooth like nickel but smooth enough.
  3. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    Me too.
  4. Landyachtz


    Sep 5, 2005
    Tempe, AZ
    I love hi-beams, they're the only steel roundwound I use. I tune EADGC, and have yet to break a string, and I slap a lot (Ray Riendeau student :) )
  5. Stox


    Mar 18, 2005
    London UK
  6. Mike Shevlin

    Mike Shevlin

    Feb 16, 2005
    Las Vegas
    I think they are great & very smooth - great for slap & they don't tear away at your fingers. I did, however, switch to Dean Markley Blue Steels & think they are superior overall
  7. He :) Me too! What did you find in the Blue Steels that the Hi-Beams didn't have? I find them punchier, fatter and warmer and still with the nice full harmonics of the higher mids and treble.
  8. I agree with you on both points, Mike.

    I think Hi Beams are a pretty smooth feeling roundwound, compared let's say to EB Slinky or, Rotosound 66s, and that Dean Markley Blue Steels are better sounding. (better overall balance)

    But, just last night I tried my first set of Lo Riders on my Stingray and think they're the best sounding string for fingerstyle playing I've ever tried.

    I'm going to do a search before I start a Lo Rider praise thread, but as soon as I turned on my amp I heard a difference. :bassist:

  9. Did you use Blue Steels on the Stingray before? I do that now, and I think they compliment that bass perfectly, but I'm interested in hearing your take on the difference between the Blue Steels and the Lo-Riders.
  10. Yes, I kept the factory Ernie Ball Slinkys on my Stingray for about the first two months, then I put on a set of Blue Steels.

    The sound got better right away. Compared to the Slinkys, the Blue Steels had more bottom, a less harsh midrange and a smoother top. Very well balanced overall. They are darker-sounding than Slinkys, but bear in mind that I do not like bright strings to begin with.

    For the last six months or so, I had a set of DR Hi Beams on my 'Ray. To me, the Hi Beams were similar to the Blue Steels, but not as balanced string to string, and a little brighter.

    Yesterday, I bought my first set of DR Lo Riders, which I had been wanting to try for a while; believe me when I say that I was pleasantly surprised! :hyper:

    I played my bass for a few minutes just to get the sound of the Hi Beams in my head, then within 20 minutes the string change was done.

    Compared to the Hi Beams, the Lo Riders were:

    1.) Stiffer in feel.
    2.) Darker, and also darker than the Blue Steels. ;)
    3.) More responsive to finger-style playing. The Lo Riders seem to be more controlable when digging in; they seem to recover more quickly and this makes them sound much more articulate.
    4.) More focused especially on the lower notes.

    With my tone controls at the same settings:

    Bass --- 7
    Mids --- 6
    Treble - 2

    The Lo Riders gave me more of the sound I've been looking for, which is a thick, non-trebly yet, cutting sound that I've been trying to get out of my Stingray for a couple of years.

    I think I've found it. :)

    These are my impressions after playing the strings for only about half an hour, but I really like what I'm hearing so far.

    I love the stiffer feel of these strings. Why did I wait so long? :rollno:

    Mike :cool:
  11. cdef


    Jul 18, 2003
    Welcome to the club, Michael. Many years ago, when you couldn't easily get DR strings over here, I'd use DM Blue Steels on and off. That was frustrating, because they'd sound good right out of the pack, but the sound would be gone within the week. After trying my first set of Lo Riders, I knew they were right for me - they stayed just as punchy for some several moons. You'll find they mellow out very gracefully, too.

    HB's I've only tried once, when my dealer was out of LR's. They were nice. Smooth, yes, not coarse at all, but just a bit too flexible for my liking. They felt thinner than the gauges indicated. Must be the round vs. hex core wire making the diff.
  12. Thanks :) I tried Lo-Riders a couple of years ago. At that time I hadn't Blue Steels to compare with, but as I remember the LR's didn't have that open and complex (upper) midrange as the Blue Steels does. Do you have any comments on that? I use 50-128 which gave me a tighter fuller sound compared to the 45-128 gauge. Do you remember the gauge of your -blue steels?
  13. Carl, I've only played the Lo Riders for about half an hour so far, but they have more of a stronger lower midrange to my ear.

    I used to use the ML set - .045 - .105

    My Stingray is a 4 string.

  14. Ok, thanks :)
  15. I liked the sound of the Lo Riders as soon as I played a few notes.

    And now that I've tried both, I must agree with you on the Hi Beams being a little too flexible.

    I love the low end on the Lo Riders. They probably sound great on a P-bass. :bassist:

    Mike ;)
  16. I use low riders on my p bass, extra heavy guage 50-110, and they punch hard. They are the best/only strings I will use.
    They are the best upgrade you can make to a p bass other than SD 1/4 pounders. They are a lot stiffer, they have a nice tension on them, and the low end is nice, while the high end is much smoother than high beams.
  17. I am in love with Lo Riders!

    I was playing my 'Ray again last night, and this is the best it has ever sounded! :bassist:

    My Stingray now sounds close to Paul Denman's sound. (Bass player for Sade on a couple of her albums)

    With almost all the treble rolled off, and with the mids and bass boosted, I get a very deep, throaty, yet articulate sound.

    A very happy Lo Rider customer here. :cool:

  18. Simball


    Mar 26, 2005
    Portland, Oregon
    I've been using the round core DR's on my ray for a while now (hi-beams, sunbeams, marcus millers) Now I'm really curious about the lo riders. Think I'll check out a set this weekend :bassist:
  19. 59jazz

    59jazz Infinite Rider on the Big Dogma Supporting Member

    The Lo Riders sound very interesting! You mentioned their tension as stiff, but how stiff? As far a tension goes, what other brand would you liken them to? Can you set them up close to the frets with minimal buzz?

    Thanks, Steve