LaBella v Fender Tapewound

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Steve Cat, Mar 30, 2001.

  1. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    Is there any difference between La Bella and Fender tapewound strings(Duh). The diameters are slightly different.
  2. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    Good question dude :) . I tried both. Plus the GHS and Rotosound
    tapes. I'll probably get flamed for this, but on my gear I found
    the Fenders the worst of the bunch. They were deader than
    doornails...low output, not a short decay - more like non-existent.
    Hardly even a good "thump". Got the same results on a cheapie
    Yammer `260F with a (electromagnetic) Dimarzio Split-P pup. I put
    back the Labella 760N's on the R/A that it came with. Nice singers.
    A tad too twangy for me. Finally wound-up usin' Rotosound tapes.
    RS88-LD on the R/A and RS88-EL on a fretless, strung-through-
    body Ripper. It's kinda' hard to describe `em...I've used the terms
    "woody" and "airy" before. They've got a good, solid thump and
    the aforementioned ethereal characteristics. Plus a solid feel.

    I even tried those Fender Nylon Filament Roundwounds.
    What were they smokin' when they came up with those?
    "Ground" nylon roundwounds?!? :eek: .

    Ya' might check with TB'r metalarch69...I hear he got a set of
    LaBella tapes on his Ibanez fiver and likes `em a bunch ;) .

    (fyi...the bold, underlined words are linked - KLEEK :D )
  3. No flame here. No string Fender has produced has ever filled me with any enthusiasm.
  4. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    Thanks a bundle for posting the Rotosound link, I'll give them a shot. The Fenders may not be the greatest but they sound better to me than flatwounds, an are a whole lot easier on the fingers and my MIM fretless!
  5. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    Dude! :D You gotta try some Thomastik-Infeld Jazz Flats (JF344)
    on that fretless MIM...:rolleyes: ::bliss:: :)
  6. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    Well, I tried D'Addario flat Chromes and lost my mwah (still kind of a nice transparent guitarlike tone)so I went to the tapewounds and and got some, not as much as I'd like mwah back! I hear alot of good recommendations on the TI strings but I'm gonna try those Rotosound strings first. Your woody/airy description sounds appealing, kind of upright bassy?. Too bad bass strings are so damned expensive I'm used to buying XL 10's for $3.99 at Guitar center.
  7. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    Holy crap! :eek: I've been chattin' with a (former?) g**t*rist?!? :p
    Tha's right! :D Got that tone on the R/A (w/Fishman piezo),
    AND on my Ripper, Yammer, and Epi Casady with electro-magnetic pups :) .
    The Casady was particularly sweet with the added "snarl"
    at switch position #3.
  8. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    Yuh, know I was just thinkin', that rotosound g string is a 65. Now that I have already ordered the rotosound strings am I going to have to widen (is that a word) the nut to accomodate it, and if I do what happens if I want to go back to a 45?

    oH, Oh!
  9. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    YES..."widen" is a word, but accommodate has 2 M's :rolleyes: (KIDDING! ;) ).
    I never had to do any "nut jobs" on any bass to fit the Roto 88's.
    I'd think the E @ 115 might be a bigger concern. Once again,
    NOT a problem on any o' my basses...Casady, Yamaha `260,
    Ripper, or Rob Allen. The only nut problem I DID have (besides
    my ex :p ) was when I tried a set of (LaBella) James Jamerson
    flats on the Yamaha - the E broke the dang thing! :eek:. They're
    great flats, but I'd hate to guess what the tension is per string.
    I've got a MIM fretless Jazz I just haven't futzed with much.
    I'll try a `88-LD set on her and let ya' know what happens.

    BTW...After the fact of course, but there's a TB'r dude named, uh,
    "Dude" who could probably get ya' a real good deal on Roto tapes.
    Maybe even make up a custom "light" set if that's what you want.
  10. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    I'll tell yah what notduane since you are such an upstanding dude. Let me share something with you that you might find of use. Ken Burns series of CD's are really a good deal. Pricewise, recording qualitywise, and selectionwise (if like me you don't know alot about jazz). Anyway the Charles Mingus CD is one hell of a bargain, at $11. Cut 1, Haitian Fight Song-Great Groove--Cut3 Porkpie-touching, surprise texture--Cut5 Faubus--Gilbert and Sullevanesque--Cut8-Solo Dancer--Perfection of composition--Cut9-Masterful Bass Chops. In general I am just as amazed by his skill as a composer and much as a bass player.

    Another favorite of mine, but a little of the wall(In a square sense), is Money Jungle--Charles Mingus with Duke Ellington (who before this cd I just couldn't get into) and the great drummer Max Roach.
  11. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    mmmmm...M-M-M-Mingus!!! I've got the 1959 Columbia (3 CD) set.
    Pretty sweet. I been meanin' to get the 12 CD set "The Complete
    Debut Recordings". From the description, it says the Debut label
    was formed by Mr. Mingus and (drummer) Max Roach.

    Geez. A (ex) gee-tarist who likes Mingus?!? Crazy world (j/k ;) ) .

    Shirley...Surely you've heard of Michael Manring? I've often tried
    to describe the sound of another "oddball" string - Thomastik/Infeld
    Acousticores...phosphor-bronze roundwound over a NYLON (not steel)
    core. Pretty doggone flexible. Won't work with magnetic pickups.
    They've got a real distinctive tone (vs the tapes) on my Rob Allen -
    hence me gettin a doubleneck :rolleyes: . Anyhoo, the closest thing I've
    heard is "La Sagrada Familia" off of Mr. Manring's Book of Flame.
    There's a sample here. It's the "BowwWWwwrrrRR" sound.
    Yeah, I know it's probably a Zon and somethin other than `coustis.
  12. Steve Cat

    Steve Cat

    Mar 19, 2001
    Bwah Hah Hah I just ordered his CD yesterday from amazon............small world.
  13. notduane


    Nov 24, 2000
    Hey Steve C.
    Found (most of) a set of Rotosound RS88-LD tapewounds
    and slapped `em on my MIM blue/black/purple? :p fretless Jazz.
    I couldn't find the Roto D, but no matter. The G and the E
    fit alright. The E DID come pretty close to the end of the silk
    wrap on the post. I'd say the E and the A sat maybe a
    tad higher in the nut, but I don't think it'd require filing...
    maybe a (bridge) saddle tweak.

    It was kinda' interestin' to have original flatwound Fender D
    on there for comparison. Doin' a `cross the board lick...Bowrr,
    Bowrrr, DUHHH, Bowrrr :D . Hope this helps.
  14. Well! I'm gonna be odd man out here.

    I like the Fender Tape-Wounds. I like them a lot. I also like Fender Flats. Don't like Fender Rounds, but don't like anybody's Rounds.

    I use Fender Tapes on my AmStdDlx Fretless. Sounds real nice with good sustain, moderate thump, and lots of MWAH! I guess it varies from bass to bass and bassist to bassist.

    Don't know how old your Fender Tapes were when you got them. They are not big sellers so they do lie around stores for a long time. Strings do have a shelf life. It's long, but not indefinite. Just a thought.
  15. dabber


    Jan 22, 2001
    A friend of mine has a MIM fretless Jazz W/ Fender tapewounds. We both thought (still do) that they sound pretty good...however, I (somewhat) recently put the La Bella tapes on my 5 string fretless Dean and those things blow the Fenders away. (Belated thanks to Flatwound for string length info...) It feels easier sliding, and held notes sing, really...The best part is you can buy Carvin tapewounds(repackaged Labellas) cheap. There is a min order to ship but I just added some guitar strings and it was still cheaper than Labellas.