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Finally, a fretless string I can deal with

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Chasarms, Jan 23, 2006.

  1. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    I've been through a bunch of strings on a few fretless basses that I have owned. And, I love the feel of fretless bass. I love the clarity and articulation that you get on a fretless. I love the freedom of fretless bass. I love the general idea of fretless bass.

    But, I have finally decided after years of messing around and playing with setup and strings, I HATE the sound of flatwound strings on an electric bass. Fretted or fretless, I hate it.

    I play DB. I love that sound. I HATE flats on a slab. So much, in fact, that I rarely play fretless at all because in my head, I have always thought you must play flats on a fretless fingerboard. I never found a sound that I loved, or even liked for that matter. I have spent a ton of money on flats. Everything from Fenders to $65 TI jazz flats. Nope. Not for me. Even groundwound/halfwounds are lifeless IMO.

    With my newest fretless Modulus Genesis V, the evil spiral of gloom started once again. Tried chromes. Major tone suck. Tried TI jazz flats. Less, but still the suck was there. Halfrounds. Sounded decent for a week or so and the suck started to set in.

    So, I decided that there is really no point in preserving the fb if I never play the bass anyway. I decided I was going with rounds and if it trashes fingerboard, so be it. I'll resurface it or replace it. At least I am playing it.

    I wanted to give myself at least a mild chance of preservation. So, I just installed a set of Ken Smith extralight compressors on the bass. Wow! I don't know if these are actually any better for the bass than regular rounds, but they sounds amazing on this bass. The brightness, the clarity, the crisp attack.

    Yes. I shall play the fretless with reckless abandon and use these strings on an unprotected fb without apology. I have been set free!!

    I was also reminded of the way a really light G and even D string sound on a 35" bass. They ring out and sustain better than a heavier guage string. I need to take the .47s off my Q5 and go back to the extra light SR2000s I think.
  2. greenboy


    Dec 18, 2000
    remote mountain cabin Montana
    greenboy designs: fEARful, bassic, dually, crazy88 etc
    They are a great string, the light gauges are bright and sustain, but don't feel floppy, and very balanced in ooutput and envelope. The heavier gauges are a little darker and thumpier. I've used them quaite abit for eight years on a five-string ebony board with little noticeable wear.

    The GHS Pressurewounds are about the same. Which is nice.