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Good bow response and no sustain on pizzicato

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by Giamma, Feb 10, 2015.

  1. Giamma


    Feb 5, 2008
    Hi guys, I'm an old school jazz bass player, I really love the gut feel and his sound on pizzicato but I don't like so much the sound with bow.. do you know some strings with a good sound on with the bow without the mwwwooaaa in pizzicato?
  2. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    Evah Pirazzi. Grab a set of the mediums
  3. tww001


    Aug 13, 2003
    Telford, PA
    I think Evah Pirazzi have quite a bit of sustain, at least on my bass and some of my friends' and students' basses. You might want to look into a truly orchestral string with lots of dampening, like the Flexocore.
  4. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    Belcanto is good. I know some guys who use it for really dark pizz/jazz
    iiipopes likes this.
  5. I changed from Evah weich to Belcanto on my bass two weeks ago and the BC have way less sustain (pizz). Especially the E and A sound kind of "plop" on my bass where the Evahs had lots of sustain. So Belcantos might indeed be a good choice.
    iiipopes likes this.
  6. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    There's a guy around town who uses them for trad jazz. Gets a thump tone. Almost no note (or very little).
  7. Kaplans have a really short pizz sustain. I would never use them for pizz, but I like some sustain.
  8. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny

    Nov 20, 2000
    What strings have you tried? Lately I've kinda been thinking about the same thing as you and have tried a set of clear wound guts (bought used not sure who made them), Innovation Super Silvers, Spiro Solos tuned down, Spiro Mittel and Wiechs and Dominant Mittels. The conclusion I've come to is that you need you be willing to compromise somewhere. I can get the gut sound and compromise the arco sound or deal with a little more modern zing playing pizz and get more satisfying arco sound. Right now I'm using the Dominants with a Spiro E. For me it's easier to develop the technique to play those strings short and thuddy pizz than it is to get guts to sing like the arco sound I'm hearing in my head. It's a highly personal preference but I don't know of a string that has a great gut sound and an easy to obtain modern arco sound. How much you're willing to compromise and in what direction is something likely to involve some trial and error. Fortunately there are always lots of used strings for sale here.
  9. Giamma


    Feb 5, 2008
    Thanks to all for your kind response. I've montend Obligato E and A and gut strings D and G but I'm studiyng a lot with the bow (I wnat to improve my technique and my intonation) and I really dislike the gut sound so I mounted D and G obligato, now when I play pizzicato gggrrrr...I hate that open and clear sound :/ no peace for me :D
    Maybe are just the guts strings that are made of good gut?!What do u think about Velvet Anima or D'addario Hybrid?could they be the solution?
    Meantime I'll try to get some flexocore and belcanto..
  10. DC Bass

    DC Bass Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2010
    Washington DC
    A nicely worn in set of Flexocor 92 might work for you, they're a dream to bow! They are quite "zingy" when brand new, but that quality goes away very quickly and they settle into a nice, warm, dark sound, and a pizz with short sustain. Buy a used set here in the classifieds and you'll not only save money, but you won't have to endure the new string tone!

    As for "good" gut- there is definitely a dramatic difference between inexpensive gut strings and those found from the boutique makers like Gamut and DD. Pirastro Chorda is another great string.

    Also, respectfully, I believe short sustain can be achieved with any string via left hand control.

    Best of luck with your string journey!

  11. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    I also use Bel Canto A & D for a darker, more percussive and less sustain pizz.
    bskts247 likes this.
  12. Giamma


    Feb 5, 2008
    And g?
  13. iiipopes

    iiipopes Supporting Member

    May 4, 2009
    D'Addario Prelude. Don't laugh. It is a really dark, balanced string that has a complimentary intonation, tone, and sustain profile to the Bels. I had a bang-up and the Bel G took a hit; I had a gig coming up and needed a quick, cheap G string just to get by for the gig, and it turned out much better than I could ever have hoped. It is a steel rope core/steel wrap string, not nickel like the Helicores, and is a much better string than the popular press would let on. The entire Prelude set is very similar in tension and feel to Spiro Mitts, but darker and more an arco string than a pizz string.
    DC Bass likes this.
  14. Pirastro Original-Flat chrome have strong dark arco sound but almost no pizz sustain. They are used mainly in symphonic orchestras But they are little bit pricey.
    I ´m just using Pirastro Olivs and they are fabulous arco strings, but the have some small pizz sustain. They are also pricey.
    DC Bass likes this.
  15. dfp

    dfp Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2004
    if you want really easy to bow and less growling pizz, skip the Hybrids and look at the D'Addario Helicore Orchestra (sometimes denoted as "Helicore Arco") strings. Not too expensive (half the price of Flexocor, no?), very easy to bow, less sustaining pizz sound... If you like the lower tension of guts (most old school heads do, myself included) consider the light gauge or solo gauge tuned to orchestra pitch. best of luck and if you don't mind, follow up later with your results!
    Giamma and DC Bass like this.
  16. dkimbrobass


    Jul 16, 2011
    Knoxville, TN
    +1 Kaplans or Belcantos.
  17. I'll be changing back to my Pirazzis Weich as the Belcantos are a bit too old school sounding pizzicato. Dark, thumpy but with very limited sustain on my bass. My main reason for trying the BC was the name they have of being one of the best bowing strings. But after 4 weeks with the BC I still see no substantial difference from the Evahs. So it's back to the Evans for me.

    With all this in mind I now think even more that the BC would be a good choice for the OP.
  18. Your description is Jargar 100%. Believe me!! beautiful warm arco sound and 0% pizz mwoah, pure thump!!! And they can be strung using a loop as real guts ( removing the ball end).

    Try them, you won't be disappointed!!
  19. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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