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Labella White Nylons: std vs copper and gold? - edit: COPPER RAWKS

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by mcnach, Mar 13, 2018.

  1. I have recently become a fan of the white nylons, and I have a couple of basses with the standard ones.

    I realised that they make another two 'flavours'... the copper and the gold ones.

    Has anybody tried both the standard white nylons and either the copper or the golds as well? How do they compare?
    It seems that gold is brighter than copper... but that's as much as I know. How do they compare to the standard ones in flexibility, brightess, low midrange...
    4StringTheorist likes this.
  2. quite echoey in here... ;)
  3. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Tried all three.

    My favorites in order are: Copper, Gold, White.

    The coppers have complex mids and a nice amount of warmth compared to the other two. The golds are also nice. More of a mellower white type sound. Less brightness and a hint more warmth. But lacking (to my ears) some of the pretty mids found in the copper set.

    Bottom line: they're all really nice strings. Which you end up preferring depends on your own personal tastes, what bass you're going to put them on, the types of music you play, and how you play. I don't like too much brightness most times. And my main players have a lot of midrange output so I'm more likely to want to rein them in rather than throw a set of super bright strings on them. If I want really bright strings I just use Rotosound 66s (which I do like on the right bass) and have done with it.

    So anyway, my goto is the copper set. Prior to the white nylons I never really cared for tapewounds. Most sets I tried (and I probably tried them all) lasted an hour or two at most before I was pulling them back off. But whatever LaBella is doing with these has changed my tune about the breed. These strings sing. I have coppers on a PB with an Aguilar AG-4P-60 pickup and it's a marriage made in heaven.

    So I guess I'm pretty gung-ho on white nylons. Especially the light gauge copper set.

    4StringTheorist, Xad and mcnach like this.
  4. Haroldo

    Haroldo Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2005
    North Shore, MA
    I have not made my peace with the White Nylons - put a set of light gauge Whites on both a Ernie Ball Caprice and a Epiphone Embassy and found these strings to be lacking, particularly on the Epiphone. In both instances the tone was much too thin for my liking. Do you use a larger gauged set?

    P.S. I'm sorry I can't comment on the Copper or Gold Whites.
  5. Hmmm, you're making me want to try the coppers, with all your talk of mids this and mids that! :D

    I like the white nylons a lot. What is it I like about them? The low mids. They seem to have a nice thick tone without getting too bassy or thumpy (which most other nylons do, the black tape ones I've tried from other brands, I never tried black Labellas), and they have a nice top end without getting crazy, but I can tame it easily if I want to and still won't sound like flats or any other tapewounds.

    I like mids. I like mids and a tight low end, and I often tame the treble. Usually I play DR Fat Beams... initially I hate their brightness, but once they've been used a while, they settle in, the treble calms down, and they have pretty chunky low mids compared to just about any other rounds I've tried.

    I have white nylons on a Jazz and a P/J right now. The 50-105 set, which feels a bit rubbery and slinky but in a good way.

    I think you just made me want to try the coppers... I was hoping you'd say something like "they're more like flats compared to the white nylons" or "they're brighter than the white nylons, making them a bit more mid scooped"... but what you're saying intrigues me as it sounds just right to me... Hmmm. Thank you! :)
    patzilla83 likes this.
  6. I use the 50-105 set, not sure whether that's the light or not... They don't sound thin to me at all (active Jazz [John East J-Retro and DiMarzio Area J pickups] and a passive P/J bass). They do feel a bit strange at first and when playing at low volume there's a lot of 'plasticky' noise that may be a bit distracting... but once you turn up the amp a bit I find they give a nice thick tone with enough brightness if you want it, and rolling down treble a bit makes me smile.
    Haroldo likes this.
  7. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Yep! Those are my goto rounds for exactly the same reason. And I don’t like them fresh out of the box either. Also for the same reason.

    So I think we’re on the same wavelength here. :)
    mcnach likes this.
  8. I have used all of the various flavors of Labella tapes but I've never tried them all on any one bass so it's hard to compare them definitively. Different configurations, pickups, some on fretted and others on fretless, different setups.

    That said, I'd say try the coppers. I've had them on a Japanese Hohner P bass since I rebuilt it and haven't had any desire to try anything else on it. Had them on a similar fretless P which uses the same pickup and decided to try the golds on it, which is what are on there now. The golds are brighter and stronger in the higher mids and sound really good but I plan on going back to the coppers due to the stronger and richer low mids. If you've got a fretless and like a lot of mwahh, the golds are probably better but that's not my goal on this bass. It's setup a little higher and the lower mid bloom I got with the coppers was great. I have another fretless J that is setup with lower action for a more pronounced mwahh. It has a set of Fender tapes on it, which sound really good too but I'll probably try the golds on it after they come off the FL P. I also have the coppers on my Sire V7 Jazz style bass. I tried a few different strings on the Sire and was never completely satisfied until I tried the coppers. I'm not a fan of bright. I favor stronger fundamental and low mids, love the flexibility and smoothness of tapes.
    mcnach likes this.
  9. Aha! Copper White Nylons will have to be ordered... such a hard life! ;)
  10. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Be forewarned they seem to run out of stock a lot.

    I would be interested in your impressions if you do get a set. I think those are probably one of the most interesting developments in strings in a long time.
  11. Thank you for your description/explanation. It is consistent with what 40Hz says and with what I like too...
    I will order a set and see how it goes :)
  12. I've just ordered a set from Bass Direct, here in the UK. They seem to be in stock, so I should probably be trying them this weekend! :bassist:
    I'll report back.
    4StringTheorist and 40Hz like this.
  13. Marcocolo

    Marcocolo Supporting Member

    Sep 10, 2008
    Why don't they seem to make the Coppers in short scale?!?
  14. BassJuju

    BassJuju Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2016
    I have tried the gold and regular, have not tried the copper, and I use the black tapes too. I prefer the gold over the white, but I have to say the blacks are my favorite. I do like that the Gold's were more "round" like than the blacks. The regular seemed a bit too loose to me, but the tone was good. I am switching that bass to La Bella Flats very soon. All in all, I am a big fan of La Bella strings and their support.
  15. campbems

    campbems Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2013
    I have tried the Gold's and Copper's on several basses and for me the Coppers's are much better. I actually liked the Coppers probably as good as any string I've ever used. They are very smooth feeling and sound great in a full band mix.
  16. The coppers arrived today... but I'm not going to have time to try them! :crying:
  17. FINALLY... I had time to spend time at home and try these strings.

    They are all I hoped they'd be... really. That low mid presence is perfect, they're still plenty bright, but they sit a little better than standard white nylons for me. I put them on a Precision. It's just a Squier Mike Dirnt... nothing extraordinary, but it's a very sweet bass, very light weight and feels great. Actually I replaced the neck as I prefer maple and I came across a CV series one that fitted in perfectly... an replaced the pickup... so maybe it's nothing like a Mike Dirnt anymore :D
    AAANYWAY... I was toying with the idea of adding a mid-sweep preamp module to this bass, keeping a passive tone, and just adding the mids control. I don't think I'll bother anymore. These strings sound amazing! With the tone wide open they sound very clear, with that strong low mids presence I love, tight bass. I was playing along a couple of funky backing tracks, one is pretty sparse but the other was quite busy and the bass sat in the mix really nicely, the bass was clear and prominent but without being too in your face. Slap? No problem. Beautiful slap sound. Turning the tone control down a bit tames the extra brightness and makes the bass sit in a bit backwards, but without getting muddy. The bass is present and just so... I love it.

    I think these are my new favourite strings for Precision basses. Hmmm, but I have to try them on a Stingray now too.

    I also like the way they feel. They're still very flexible, but not quite as much as standard white nylons. You can still do some crazy string bends with these, but they offer a bit more resistance than the very soft white nylons, and I like that.

    Thank you for taking the time to describe these strings to me... you did a great job :)
  18. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    My pleasure. Glad they worked out as well for you as they did for me. I've got them on my modded Matt Freeman Squire and I'm pleased to say it has since become my all-time favorite PB. And after over 40 years of bass playing and over a dozen different PBs I've owned in the interim, that's a pretty ringing endorsement on my part.

    Cheers! :thumbsup:
  19. Ok... now you're freaking me out. You ALSO have a Matt Freeman Squier????
    I don't want to see what you look like, I fear we were twins separated at birth :D

    Although my MF has been heavily modified. I added a J pickup at the bridge and replaced the P for J... essentially turning it into a Jazz. Later I had the neck pickup moved towards the bridge, so now it's some kind of JJ bass with a unique sound. Great basses those Matt Freemans! Fantastic neck, really well built, and even the pickup is pretty good.
    Funny you mentioned this bass as last night I was thinking I needed to buy another set of coppers for the MF. It's screaming for new strings and these will be ideal, I'm sure.
    40Hz likes this.
  20. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Could be. I’d like to think dad got around a bit during his salad days. ;):thumbsup:

    The Freeman neck is indeed to die for. It’s become somewhat famous for that hence its scarcity on the used market and a steadily climbing price tag.

    I just took the simpler expedient of redoing the electronics, adding an Aguilar AG-4P-60 pickup (which is basically just a fuller ranged 60s style sound) - and since I was on a roll also hunted down an elusive 13-hole gold anodized pickguard.

    Since it was a sig model I took a minimally invasive approach and pulled the pickup, harness and pickguard out as a single piece in case I ever want to turn it back into a Freeman. All that needs to be resoldered are the two ground leads. Then 4 screws for the pickups and 13 screws for the pickguard and it’s back to its original conformation.

    Here it is hobnobbing with its upscale Fender “city cousin.” (That one sports new electronics, a Klein 60s Epic, and GHS Pressurewounds - because I know what I like when it comes to a PB tone.:laugh:)

    Came out pretty nice I think:

    C904FD98-7C11-43A9-BD48-ABEF5CFBAEB0. [/QUOTE]
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2018
    mcnach likes this.

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