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Let the experiment begin!..... Sadowsky Flats

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by ljazz, Feb 6, 2014.

  1. ljazz


    Dec 10, 2002
    Cookeville, TN
    Let me start by saying, I LOVE TIJF's. I crave those killer mids that slot you into the mix perfectly. On a P Bass, there is not much better than that.

    But the problem..... while I love the low tension, my current band is playing in Eb, and the TI's are proving to be just too uncontrollable at Eb.

    I've been playing D'Addario XL's .... .045 to .105 tuned down, and they rock.... but I really miss the flats.

    Someone here posted that they would have a tough time hearing the difference between the TI's and the Sadowsky flats. So, I've finally gotten a set of them in, and got them strung up on my '08 Custom Shop '59 P this morning.

    I'll say this..... I've never played a set of flats that sound this good right out of the pack. They don't sound quite as woody as a broken in set of TI's, but we'll see how the break in (New TIJF's don't sound all that woody either). They don't have the hi mid zing of the Chromes. Definitely don't have the highs of Labellas or the old Fender flats (I have a set of each here that are both well over a decade old and completely broken in...... I've just re-tried both sets over the last few weeks). And definitely not as scooped.

    I went with the .045 to .105's..... they feel pretty good. Not nearly as stiff as Chromes, but a heck of a lot more controllable than the TI's when at Eb. I probably could have gotten away with the lighter set of Sadowskys.... but we'll see how they feel over the course of the next few weeks. Most flats tend to "loosen" up as they break in (although I find the TI's tend to stiffen up a touch).

    Anyway.... so far, so good. Rehearsal tonight. We'll see how it goes!
  2. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    You should try either black or white labella tapes next.
  3. Dredmahawkus


    Nov 4, 2012
    I usually play .105-.110 rounds....but love .100 sadowsky flats. they are my favorite! great sound once they break in too...nice even woody tone....that still stays a touch bright.
    I am getting a new/used P bass today and not sure to throw my new set of the old fender flats or new sadowsky set on it! since I already have a P with the sadowskys I will probably go with the Fenders.
    I really like the tension of the Sadowsky though....they are like perfect...not floppy but still a bit loose tension. they not only sound great but feel great.
    the old Fender flats are a bit stiff.
  4. porterbass

    porterbass Supporting Member

    Jul 11, 2013
    Wow, great timing! I have a Lakland P bass being delivered this week and I'm deciding between the TI Jazz Flats and Sadowsky Flats for it (I ordered a set of TIs yesterday). I have TI JFs on two basses, an Elrick Hybrid 4 fretted and a Rick Turner Ren5 fretless. Absolutely love the TI JFs!

    I have LaBella black tapewounds on an Elrick Hybrid 4 fretless and have been thinking about trying the Labella white tapes or Sadowsky Flats on that one. I am finding the black tapewounds are just too "dull" sounding on that Elrick (even though they are about a year old and not a lot of hours on it). Perhaps I keep comparing them to the tone of the Status-Graphite tapewounds on my Rick Turner Ren4 fretless, which are amazing on that bass! Much better across the entire range than the LaBellas. (I tried the Status-Graphite tapes on the Elrick fretless but the tension was too low for the Elrick.)

    Looking forward to your thoughts on the Sadowskys vs the TIs. Thanks!
  5. porterbass

    porterbass Supporting Member

    Jul 11, 2013
    Where do you guys order the Sadowsky Flats from? I am going to order a set today to be able to try on the Lakland P and the Elrick fretless. Are the .45 or the .40 lower in tension?

  6. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    We order from www.bassstringsonline.com
    tell jason you're a TB member and you'll get a discount. Great service and pricing.
  7. hdracer


    Feb 15, 2009
    Elk River, MN.
    Sadowsky Black Label Flats have become my string of choice.
    The tapered B sting just kills on a 34" 5'er.
    They are almost to slick and took some getting use to. When I play the few basses I have left with Chromes on them it feels so slow and grabby now.
  8. JB36

    JB36 Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2010
    Albany, NY
    Sadowsky flats were may favorites from about 5 different kinds that I tried; including TIs. The tension falls right in the middle between a loose TI and a really stiff flat. I would think you coul d go down a half step an the tension would be fine. They sound like flats, but don't quite have that old school thump.
  9. Dredmahawkus


    Nov 4, 2012
    the lighter gauge the lower the tension usually.
    Sadowsky are a perfect middle ground....not floppy like TI and not like cables like chromes and the old Fender flats.

    and remember to email Jason at bassstringsonline before you order and say you are on TB and you get the TB prices!
  10. ljazz


    Dec 10, 2002
    Cookeville, TN
    Okay..... Rehearsal last night with the Sadowsky Flats...... I won't say they're my favorites. Yet.

    But these things are the best sounding, right out of the pack flats I have ever played. I usually hate brand new flats..... TIJF's included. Can these get any better as they break in? Sonically, they don't feel quite as "expressive" in the mids as the TI's. Although, I don't think TI's are very "expressive" when brand new. Now, don't get me wrong, because the mids really "sing" in the Sadowsky flats. They are incredibly "even" across each string..... each string sounds like it belongs in the set..... rare for flats when new.

    I'm not sure why people talk about the highs in these..... I think what they hear is the lack of the really boomy lows? These definitely don't have the high end zip that my Labellas or old Fender flats have. No high mid spike like the Chromes have either.

    A chunk of foam, and these will definitely thump.

    They sit in the mix extremely well. My CS P has a very low output pup. But I was able to play without a volume boost.... those mids really sit in the mix well.

    As for feel..... no floppiness or control issues while in Eb. Tension is good, but the stiffness will take a bit of getting used to (compared to the TI's).

    If you're into the TIJF tone, but not the floppy feel, then these may be the flat to try. And another observation..... no coating on these. I swear TIJF's have rosin on them when new.

    I got these from Jason at Bassstringsonline..... great price, and super fast shipping.
  11. I love my Sadowsky flats on my Ray35. They really "speak" well and have a lot of tonal flexibility.
  12. Stone Soup

    Stone Soup

    Dec 3, 2012
    Pino used to use LaBella in place of TI, on his drop tuned basses. Not sure if he still does, but I would guess so. I got the info during one of the PSP live streamed sessions, a few years ago.
  13. Sav'nBass

    Sav'nBass What the .............. Supporting Member

    Jan 18, 2009
    Northern Va.
    I just got a set of TIs for my Jazz today.. going to put them in in a bit..
  14. ljazz


    Dec 10, 2002
    Cookeville, TN
    I think that is when he is dropped down to D and C#.

    Frankly, the Labella tone is not what I'm searching for. I've struggled with them over the years, because of the mid scoop. Love my mids.

    There is no lack of mids in the TIJF's, and I'm finding these Sadowsky flats have beautiful mids too. Double stops sound fantastic! My CS '59 P (from '08, and has the 7.25" radius) is such a sweet sounding and playing bass. These strings sound incredible on it! We'll be doing some recording in March...... I can't wait to record with these!
  15. Klonk


    Apr 28, 2011
    Interesting read! I have a CS 59 P bass too, and I'm going back and forth between TI and Sadowsky flats.

    All of my bands play in standard tuning, so at the moment I have TIs on, the Sadowskys are on my backup Frankenfender P. Both really good flats, IMO.
  16. I am used to D'Addario half-rounds. I am thinking of changing my strings. Does anyone here have an idea for how long the Sadowsky flats last? My experience with Fender was about three months. My current strings are about five years old. They still sound ok, but I'm thinking....just in case I come into some money soon....; any help?
  17. Klonk


    Apr 28, 2011
    I wouldnt think they lasted any differently than other major brand flats, which is years. I've had me Sadowsky flats on for 6 months now, they still feel like new (or newly broken in) and I expect them to be great for years.