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How often do you change strings?

Discussion in 'Ask Justin Meldal-Johnsen' started by remigiozampa, Mar 28, 2013.

  1. remigiozampa


    Oct 26, 2011
    Hi Justin

    I was wondering how often do you change the strings of certain instruments. I guess if we are talking about modern/standard P or Jazz sound with rounds you will change it before every recording session, but reading the forum i noticed that you keep ancient round strings in some vintage basses (Gibson RD if my memory serves me well) what is your criteria about this respect? I imagine do you like the sound of old strings and works well in some scenarios.

    Do you have any problems with picht with old strings? How often do you change flat strings, for example?

    Thanks for your Time


  2. jmjbassplayer

    jmjbassplayer Justin Meldal-Johnsen

    Mar 25, 2005
    Depends entirely on the instrument.

    Modern standard P/J I'll change in the studio every 3-5 days of use. Live, since I sweat more, they get changed daily.

    I do have problems with pitch sometimes with old strings, but I try to work around those problems, because I'll be damned if I'm changing them.

    Flats: I don't change until they break, unless the tone just becomes far too lifeless and the bottom end begins to fade, which I have noticed.
  3. remigiozampa


    Oct 26, 2011
    Thanks!! ;-)
  4. sigmafloyd


    May 1, 2011
    Are you still using the daddario XLs for rounds? Have you tried the balanced tension sets yet?

  5. jmjbassplayer

    jmjbassplayer Justin Meldal-Johnsen

    Mar 25, 2005
    I've a set right here, waiting to get slapped on a P-bass. Looking forward to checking 'em out. Otherwise, XL's. I wonder if the balanced tension are anything like the Slowounds that I used to endorse, which I really liked.

  6. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    They're identical to regular XL's except for the gauges. I'm totally loving the balanced tension. Even pieced together a balanced tension set of Chromes from singles. I don't see how anyone could dislike it. You'll likely have to do a little truss rod/action/pickup height adjusting, but once you get it out of the way, it rocks.
  7. gumtown


    May 7, 2007
    New Zealand
    I change them (for live use) when the tone dulls off or a sting breaks,
    had a bad run of breaking strings during gigs lately, but the strings were about 2 months old.
    Typically D'aDario XL brights.
  8. Dan Bozek

    Dan Bozek

    Aug 3, 2011
    Outside Pittsburgh, PA
    Endorsing Artist, D'addario Strings
    Slowounds were the best!! A rep told me that "all the strings are slow wound now," and that may be the case, but there was something special about those string sets.
  9. zfunkman


    Dec 18, 2012
    I use TI jazz flats on all my basses. I change them about every 1 1/2 to 2 years. TI's last a long time.

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