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How are cobalt coated strings compared to normal nickle round wounds?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by NoiseNinja, Dec 10, 2017.

  1. NoiseNinja

    NoiseNinja Experimental-psychedelic-ambient-noise-drone

    Feb 23, 2011
    I normally use the Ernie Ball nickle round wound Hybrid Slinky set, gauges: 045-065-085-105, but am pondering on trying out a set of round wound Cobalt Hybrid Slinky with the same gauges.

    Now my question is, as the headline says, how they are compared to the nickle wound set?:

    Do they have about the same tension and stiffness?

    Do they have the same smooth feel?

    Do they really keep the freshness of tone longer as advertised?

    How are they tone wise?:

    The information on Ernie Balls homepage suggests that cobalts have slightly higher overall output, but also that while the nickle wounds have a pretty linear frequency response, the cobalts have slightly less mid response in comparison with the treble and bass response of the strings.

    And finally, are they in your opinion worth the extra money paid?
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  2. mmbongo

    mmbongo Regular Human Bartender Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Cobalts are pretty much the gnarliest sounding strings I've ever used, kinda like a chainsaw. Lots of upper mids. Also very rough feeling, the roughest I've ever felt. But they do sound good at what they do. If you want to cut through and can deal with the roughness, they deliver the goods.


    Feb 10, 2016
    Michigan USA
    I have to disagree, i replaced the stock Elixers on my SR505 with Cobalts and found they have much the same tone and don't feel any rougher. That said they are a little "growlier".
  4. mmbongo

    mmbongo Regular Human Bartender Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    You must be talking about the Cobalt flats. You can't get much more opposite than Elixir vs. Cobalt Rounds in both sound and feel.


    Feb 10, 2016
    Michigan USA
    Well, no actually i was referring to rounds! Yeah, i don't get it either.
  6. The winding, whether flat or round, is an iron/cobalt alloy. Not cobalt coated, as the OP's title implies.
  7. BOOG


    Dec 13, 2016
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I’ve used them. Very different sound/feel from roto77 flats and D’rio XL nickel. I like them and am going to put them back on my pbass to get the flat feel but still have more punch than roto flats. You can get round or flat. I just prefer the silky feel of flats.

    Fwiw... they don’t feel anything like other strings. Giv’m a go. Never know until you try.

    Also, what the member said about it not being a coating and rather an alloy i can confirm, correct.
  8. 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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