Flexocore Deluxe SOLO - TUNED DOWN to regular tuning?

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by Jonas Nilsson, Mar 4, 2018.

  1. Jonas Nilsson

    Jonas Nilsson

    Mar 1, 2018
    Hi there!

    Does anyone have any experience using solostrings de-tuned in general and the flexocore deluxe in particular?

    I'm a really mixed player. I would say 50/50 pizz/arco.
    My backround is rock-inspired free-jazz so my pizz style is quite physical and "digging in".
    I'm not too fond of the modern jazz sound with sustain and growl but prefer a fatter pizz-tone with a shorter sustain.
    I come from Innovation Rockabillys - that I really LOVE - but i miss the richness and clarity for arco.
    I've also been playing Pirastro SLAP that I found a bit too dead and thick.
    I recently switched to ZYEX mediums that I like for arco but that I find too modern in their pizz sound (although they haven't really broken in yet).

    So my ideal pizz-sound is short sustained, big, fat and not too modern whereas my ideal arco-sound is more cello-like. Tough combination.

    Would a detuned flexocore SOLO do the job?

    I'm also considering the hybrid/arco string POLYCHROME since I love the rockabillys but want something more arco friendly.

    Thank you all in advance!
  2. Selim

    Selim Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    New York City
    No experience with Flex Deluxe solos (only reg. Flex Deluxe), but based on what you say you're looking for, Polychromes sound like they might be a worthwhile experiment: fat pizz, shorter sustain and very arco friendly. On some days, they seem too dull/dark sounding - they're kind of the antithesis of Spirocores: both in what they give you that Spiros don't, and in what don't give you that Spiros do. But all in all, they are very solid esp. as a hybrid string and my favorite of the synthetic core designs.

    I heard that Zyex are a similar design but need a pretty long break-in time before you yield their benefits. Polychromes were ready to go for me out of the package (except for the E, which takes a bit longer to loosen up).
  3. Jonas Nilsson

    Jonas Nilsson

    Mar 1, 2018
    You think maybe that just a little patience with the ZYEX might be the thing then? Especially if I want something a tad more cello-like arco wise than the Polychromes?

    Thank you so much for your response!!!
  4. He already has a thread asking the very same thing, and about the Polychromes.
  5. As some one who comes from a kind of similar playing background and whose tried a bunch of different hybrid strings, spirocores or maybe superflexible might be the best bet. I’ve tried a bunch of different hybrid strings in the past few years, but I just put a set of Spirocore Weichs on my bass a few days ago and I’m honestly mad at myself for not doing it sooner. Yes they have a more modern sound, but especially once broken in they have a fat pizz tone. Trying out some different right hand pizzicato positions (alla Thomas Morgan) has helped me tame the brightness of fresh spirocores. If you’re into doing extended techniques with the bow, Spiro’s are excellent. Not to mention the arco tone in general is lovely if you know how to control it. You could also try spirocores on E and A and pair them with some darker strings on the the D and G.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2018
  6. Jonas Nilsson

    Jonas Nilsson

    Mar 1, 2018
    Thanks a lot for your advice!
    Max George likes this.
  7. Selim

    Selim Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    New York City
    Based on my (too brief - impatient ..) experience with Zyex and my current experiment with Polychromes, the Zyex should give you a brighter tone (which some might consider more "cello-like").

    I enjoy Polychromes as a strictly arco string, but others may find them just too dark (they have less mid/high mid frequencies).
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2018
    Jonas Nilsson and Max George like this.
  8. Jonas Nilsson

    Jonas Nilsson

    Mar 1, 2018
    I have now tried a set of flex deluxe SOLO downtuned to regular tuning.
    The arco is as expected fantastic and very much what I look for. I like the low tension feel in the string to be able to dig in it with the bow.
    The sound and feel of the pizz is more in my taste compared to ZYEX medium - I like the pronounced “T” and the fairly short sustain.
    But playing with a jazz group they lack power/volume. They feel a bit muffled and unclear- and the volume is quite a bit lower than what I’m used to and I felt I had a hard time hearing myself through the group.

    Any recommendation in regards to this? Shortly I want something louder and a bit clearer. I could live with more tension.

    Are we going back to spiro Weichs again? :)
  9. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    Maybe find a used Spiro medium E and A and throw flex deluxe on top. I just got a message a few days ago from one person about Spiro e and a and someone selling a flex d and g I could put you in touch.
  10. Jonas Nilsson

    Jonas Nilsson

    Mar 1, 2018
    Guess you’re talking regular flex deluxe now? Why the Spiros and not just a full set of flex deluxe?
  11. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    I have been told the set gets a little stiffer and less good for pizz as you go lower. I may have mistaken but are you looking for a warmer pizz sound and still be able to play arco?
  12. My bass had Flexocore deluxe on them when I first got them. I used them on a chamber music concert and they were glorious, but pizz in a jazz band was difficult. They were replaced with Evah weich GDA and Spiro mittel E. I wonder what Spiro Weich E and A with the Flexocore Deluxe Solo D and G might sound and feel like too?
    Jonas Nilsson likes this.
  13. Jonas Nilsson

    Jonas Nilsson

    Mar 1, 2018
    I am first and foremost looking for something louder than the set of de-tuned solo deluxes that I’m having on the bass right now.
    I also want the pitch to be clearer to hear.
    At the same time I’m looking for a fairly short sustain/gut like/low tension pizz sound (although not unclear) - therefore the reaction to Spirocore.
    I’ve also never been a fan of mixing different strings- and always been happy with that. (The latest string was low/med tension innovation strings that I loved a lot)

  14. Spriocore solos detuned have a bit less sustain than the other spiros. As have been said, you can get the older pizz sound with technique as well. They are great Arco. I use a Weich E and sometimes A, right now just E.
  15. You know you don't HAVE to let Spiros ring, right? I've pulled blunt notes out of mine quite successfully.

    Pull hard with the right hand, mute with the left pinkie.
    A. Munk, damonsmith and jazzcat_13 like this.
  16. Exactly. The real issue is that you CAN'T get sustain out most other strings.
    jazzcat_13 likes this.
  17. This so much! You don't have to let Spiros sound bright. I'm still getting a fairly dark/percussive sound with these pretty new Spiro Weichs I have. Playing hard and/or trying out different muting techniques works well to mellow the Spiros when they're not broken in. I've been mostly trying out some muting techniques right now. Again though, I've realized the brightness isn't really noticeable in the midst of a band. It mostly translates to clarity in the overall sound mix.

    Maybe trying Spiro's of sorts on the E and A and trying out different D and G strings might be more for your taste. I had good success pairing Innovation Braided D and G with Spiro Weich E and A. It had a very nice clear and warm tone. The only downside I found is that as the Innovations got older, they started to get a bit muddy and loose some volume. Pairing Spiro E and A with Evah Pirrazi Weich D and G is pretty popular here in LA, I've noticed. The Spiro E and Evah Pirrazi A D G was pretty nice on my bass when I had them and the basses I've played with Spiro E A Evah Pirazzi D G combo have felt pretty nice.
  18. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    I've never stuck with a mixed set more than maybe 2 months if that. spiros plus practice is becoming more and more attractive.

    Except if I was doing more arco. I'm mostly in the practice room with the occasional horrible sounding arco solo thrown into a gig. Playing the orchestral rep is challenging but when you get it right it sounds great.

    I've got an upcoming gig (maybe) playing in a pit orchestra for Cinderella which is very "classical". I'll probably avoid any issue and throw belcantos on for that week. I'll need all the help I can get.
  19. Spiros were conceived as arco strings for dark old basses. That they became popular with modern jazzers was a fluke.
    A. Munk and damonsmith like this.
  20. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    True. Although I wonder how many people actually use them on darker basses
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2018
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