Jazz Strings Questions

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DVJENS, Dec 4, 2015.



    Feb 3, 2014
    Probably a stupid question, but here goes anyway. I have four basses now that I really like and after a long period of "severe GAS" I find myself pretty satisfied with what I have. I have a Steve Harris p-bass (with an American Standard Jazz neck that I just love - what a great combo), a Peavey Cirrus USA, a Fender Aerodyne (the Japan model with pickguard and dot inlays) and, most recently I filled out my stable with a very cheap and simple Fender MIM Standard Jazz bass that I just adore. I have always heard and now believe that if you get yourself a good p-bass and a good jazz bass you will have pretty much anything you want to do covered.

    However, I have a question about strings. I have the P-Bass and the Cirrus strung with light-guage chromes. A great combo and I have gotten to really, really like the smooth feel, the lessening of finger noise etc. Plus they just sound great on those two basses.

    But on the Aerodyne and the Jazz I tried but didn't like the flatwound chromes at all. I love the feel, that didn't change. I have really gotten used to the feel of the chromes....sort've a slick, almost plastic feel to me. The light guage seems to fit my hands and it just feels "right". But I don't like the sound. On these Jazz-type basses which I wanted for their brighter sound in general, I can't seem to get that with the flatwounds on them.

    So, very quickly....is there a string out there that would give me the basic feel of the flatwound chromes I am using and love the feel of...and yet give me a brighter sound that would be a little more like you would get using roundwounds with the Aerodyne and the Jazz? I know I am asking for a lot...probably defying the laws of physics but I just don't like the feeling of a thicker roundwound string anymore but want something like the sound you would get from them. Possible at all? I have no experience with any other flatwould strings except these D'Addario chromes. Is there such a thing as a "bright" flatwound string.

    Thanks as always for the help!
  2. phillybass101


    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    Yup put a set of Ernie Balls on your jazz. It will be zingy for just a few and then poof the zing will be gone and they'll be smooth and punchy for a good while. This is not a joke.
    Geri O likes this.
  3. You could try half rounds. Basically, they are roundwounds that are polished so they have the feel of flats, but retain some of the brightness of rounds. I use them on my fretless.

  4. Mosstone


    Jun 20, 2009
    I tried flats on my Jazz and didn't like the tone, either. Replaced them a set of GHS Pressure wound strings and I was much happier.

    I still prefer rounds on a Jazz, though.
  5. MobileHolmes

    MobileHolmes I used to be BassoP

    Nov 4, 2006
    I've always had Hi Beams on mine, but they are pretty bright
  6. Ernie Ball Cobalt flats may be just the ticket. They are brighter than the Chromes. They are sold as being a flat that sounds like rounds with no fingernoise. I have them on a pbass and a Jack Casady and they are the bomb. I don't like flats on a Casady normally, its a bit too dark or muddy for my tastes. I normally string it with DM Blue Steels, but the EB flats have enough high end and zing to work really well with it.
  7. Malak the Mad

    Malak the Mad Over the River and through the Looking Glass Supporting Member

    Again, 1stname and I are in agreement. They are surprisingly bright and growly, despite being flatwound. (not surprising, if you're familiar with EB Cobalt Rounds…very snarly!) They work quite well on my P/J parts-bass and I have a barely-used set coming my way from a fellow TB'er which are destined for a Jazz I'm upgrading.
  8. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Actually, I've found the Power Slinkys (5-strings) to be not quite as zingy as a lot of other strings right out of the package, but they retain the OOTP zinginess for a good while. I change them every 6-8 weeks, depending on which bass is getting used the most (Stingray 5 is my main, but I have a Jazz that is next in line). I have a set on a fretless jazz that are 2 1/2 years old and I hope they never break. They are perfectly dull for that bass. In fact, they could be a little duller (more dull?), but I roll a little tone off. I don't like the feel of flats, that's why I don't use them.

    No joke here, either...:D
  9. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    If you don't insist on a flat finish, I thing DR Pure Blues sound exceptionally good on a JBass. Bright (but not too bright) with some really interesting midtones and a nice warm nickel sound overall. Relatively soft tension too. If finger noise is a problem for the way you play, just hit your strings with some Fast Fret.

    FWIW, my mantra is: flats on a P, rounds on a J. That always seemed to work out best for me.
  10. phillybass101


    Jan 12, 2011
    Artist, Trickfish Amplification Bartolini Emerging Artist, MTD Kingston Emerging Artist. Artist, Tsunami Cables
    If I'm playing (the way I play) on a regular gig basis. No string lasts me 6-8 weeks LOL!!!!! I have what I consider dead strings that a lot of other players would still be using.

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