DR's aren't for me

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Fuzzbass, Feb 26, 2002.

  1. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    DR nickel strings, to be exact.

    At last weekend's gig, I realized I wasn't getting optimum tone from my Lull P5. I was thinking it was the bass: with the ash body it was always a bit shy on lows... maybe the bloom is off the rose, and I'm realizing that it's deficient? I was getting a nice growl (as I usually do with ash basses), but tone was also 'boxy': a weird midrange hump that sorta reminded me of tapping a piece of cardboard. I'm not saying my tone was *bad*, really, but annoyingly weird... not up to standard. Well, maybe it was my settings, or room acoustics... I decided to see what happens next gig, compare with another bass.

    So, last night I decided to try DR Sunbeams on my new (used) MTD 535. It sounded sweet and woody with the existing strings, but these weren't fresh. I was very excited to hear what the bass would do with new strings. I carefully installed the Sunbeams, and... ***, something's wrong... I lost lows, and the mids are boxy, just like on the Lull!

    It then hit me that I had DR nickel LoRiders on the Lull.

    I am certainly not here to warn people against DR strings. It's perfectly reasonable that my boxy midrange is someone else's punchy growl. Also, the partly stale strings that sounded so good on my MTD were... (drumroll...) DR HiBeams!

    So, I'm just saying that DR nickel strings don't work for my style/technique/ears... and explaining how I came to that decision. I'll put some HiBeams back on the 535, so it's not like DR has lost me as a customer. It's just weird how I like D'Addario XL nickels and DR HiBeams, but not DR nickels.
  2. rsautrey

    rsautrey Banned

    Jul 27, 2000
    Ahhhh...string voodoo. I notice that you said you liked the Hi-Beams on the MTD. Have you ever tried stainless steel Lo-Riders?
  3. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    No, I haven't tried stainless LoRiders yet... thanks for reminding me!

    Voodoo is the word, all right. I'm still a little freaked out. But that's OK, part of the learning process of what's right for me. I still have a few string sets to audition.
  4. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    You may or may not like Stainless Steel Lo Riders. I've found the sound to be similar to the Hi Beams, but because of the hex core on the Lo Riders, the strings aren't as flexible as the Hi Beams, which have a round core.

    Try 'em, though, and let me know what you think...see if you notice a sound difference. I couldn't find one myself.
  5. I had on a set of Marcus Miller Fatbeams for a while.. medium gauge.

    To me they produced one of the best slap tones I've ever gotten from a string.. but they just didn't do it overall.

    When playing with my fingers, they just didn't feel right for some reason.. I'm not sure if it was the tension or what. The finger tone was also a bit weak.
  6. I'm not a fan of DR nickel strings either - but I use stainless Lo-Riders exclusively. I use 'em on everything - I was a little scared to put them on my Cirrus but gave it a try, and my Cirrus now sounds like a Cirrus with Lo-Riders on it :D

  7. seamus


    Feb 8, 2001
    I dislike all nickel strings, but I swear by stainless Lo Riders.
  8. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    I don't like DR strings at all, there's nothing wrong with not liking DRs. :)


    Nov 24, 2001
    New York,NY
    I've got a set of Hi-Beams on my Dingwall(the B is usally a Daddario .145) and they work & sound good. On the other hand, I've got a set of Lo-Riders(ss) on my Zon Legacy 5, can't wait to take 'em off!!! They choke the BEJESUS out of it! No sustain, plain flat & bland like crappy tap beer. I'm going to Fodera to get some custom gauges for both basses & give that a whirl, stay tuned...

  10. i've got DR Loriders (SS) on my L-2000 and I too can't wait to take em off!!!

    I'm not liking the string tension that it gives...too much.

    I need more flexibility.

    What are some good nickel strings?
  11. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I actually like D'Addario XLs which are OEM on Modulus... in fact I use them on my Modulus. Excellent quality/price ratio. Some find them too stiff.

    I keep meaning to try Thomastik-Infeld Powerbass. I have heard that they are flexible; I hope they aren't as flexible as their jazz flats though.

    I usually prefer SS strings, but I've decided to try nickels due to their reduced fretwear.
  12. dmaki


    Apr 29, 2000
    i put DR Sunbeams on my bass, same gauge as my old strings, but they seem alot thinner. the tone isnt exactly what i hoped for either. i think they are too flexible or something, it seems like i cant play as fast on them. i'm a tad bit distraught because i still havent found the "right" strings for me... Bass boomers were OK, Bass Boomers Xtreme (or whatever they are) sucked, Slinkys were better but died too fast, I liked the XL's I had on before the DR's the best I think, and now I'm disappointed with these DR's. what strings do you think i should try next?
  13. seamus


    Feb 8, 2001
    If you like a tighter string, the Lo Riders are really nice in that respect. I like a less flexible string too, I can play faster with them. The Lo Riders are about as tight a string as I've ever played, I love it.

    Lo Riders also have a full bottom end when compared to their other strings. If you are looking for a meatier thump from your strings and tighter tension, I would definitely look into these.
  14. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker Supporting Member

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    i totally abhor nickel strings.

    my spector was first strung with GHS boomers (ya know, 'cause flea uses 'em). then i put on DR hi-beams, and it was almost like a new instrument. i was thoroughly pleased with the crystal clear sound.

    my washburn is now strung with Fat beams (replacing GHS boomers), and i don't know if it is the bass or what, but the tone is somewhat lacking. they do have a real thick sound a tension that is a little less than the hi-beams.

    i bet the "fats" would sound a lot better on the spector...

    but i doubt i'll use much anything else other than the hi-beams.
  15. jacochops


    Jul 2, 2000
    Suzhou, China
    :confused: You don't like the Sunbeams?
    Wow....talk about an example of everyone having different tastes! I've used them exclusively on my Elricks, Foderas, R Basses, and Nordstrands, and they've all been great! Most of my calls are either for commercials, or jazz gigs....they've performed incredibly in all areas...fretted and fretless. I've tried just about everything, but have never found a string that is as clean and organic as the sunbeams....
    Or maybe I just have no ears, chops, or touch...;)
  16. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    LOL. As you said, it's just taste. I gigged with my sunbeam-equipped MTD 535 twice this weekend (it's not like I thought they sounded so bad I had to take 'em off!) and was very impressed with the feel, but it was still apparent that they don't give me my tone: I prefer harmonic richness with a bit of grit even. When the sunbeams die I'm going to put HiBeams back on because those were the ones I liked so much when the bass arrived.
  17. chucko58


    Jan 17, 2002
    Silicon Valley, CA, USA
    I paid for all my gear myself. Well, me and MasterCard.
    Just taste?! Look around this board, or musicians in general. Taste is everything!

    Too bad I don't have any. :oops:
  18. rsautrey

    rsautrey Banned

    Jul 27, 2000
    >I prefer harmonic richness with a bit of grit even.

    This is what I love so much about Stainless Lo-Riders on my Jazz bass. Harmonically complex with a strong bottom. Hi-Beams are good too but the tension got in the way of my playing style.
  19. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    I haven't tried the SS LoRiders yet. Next time I go string shopping I'll get a set each of those and HiBeams. Thanks!
  20. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    Hey Fuzzy, check out D'Addario Prisms. Very under-rated, IMO. Bright, bright, bright but GOOOOD.