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Looking for bright, punchy tone. DR Highbeams?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by AndrewM, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. AndrewM


    Feb 10, 2013
    I was just looking to get some strings that have a nice punchy tone to them, ideal for slap and just an overall bright tone. I usually use Ernie Ball Slinky's, and a week ago I tried GHS Boomers. The Boomers sounded great at first, but they went dead after like 3 days of playing :( From what I've seen looking around a bit, it seems as though people like DR Highbeams or Lo-Riders. Would you recommend them? If so, please explain why. If not, what brand of strings would you suggest?

    Normally I would just go out and buy a few different packs, but I'm trying to save up some money to help with student loans. Thanks in advance for your time

    EDIT: I play a Warwick Corvette $$, if that helps anybody give me some advice. Just figured I should edit my post to include that :)
  2. Plucky The Bassist

    Plucky The Bassist ZOMG! I'm back from the dead!

    Jul 30, 2010
    Houston, TX
    I've owned the hi-beams and lo-riders. I have the lo-riders (stainless) on an Ibanez SRX3EX and I like them quite a bit. They come off pretty bright and a BIT more percussive than the hi-beams, they are excellent for slapping and such. I feel the hi-beams were a tad bit thicker in their tone, but that could be totally related to the basses I had them on. Both of them have great tone, but I would recommend getting the regular gauge (.045-.105) if you want to get good bassiness, I had to get the lighter gauge ones because they were too strong of low-end for my warwick lol.
  3. JFOC


    Oct 23, 2010
    new hampShire
    I like the DR fat beams I have on my brubaker atm, big & bright
  4. AndrewM


    Feb 10, 2013
    I play a Warwick too, so maybe I'll take your advice haha
  5. I'm about to place DR Fat Beams on my bass next week but a good value string I would recommend for bright and punchy would be Dean Markeley Blue Steel strings. I find they retain brightness for a reasonable period of time.
  6. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    Yes, the Hi-Beams should do the trick for you very nicely... :cool:

  7. songwriter21

    songwriter21 I have an obsession for wood. The musical kind. Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2005
    Sponsored by Hipshot
    I'd go with the Lo-Riders, because I like more biting mids, and they seem to respond more quickly than Hi-Beams, maybe because the Riders have a hex core....

    The Riders seem to be more alive than the Beams.
  8. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    +1 for lo-riders. I'm a big fan of high tension. They also somehow feel smoother to the touch than hibeams
  9. Plucky The Bassist

    Plucky The Bassist ZOMG! I'm back from the dead!

    Jul 30, 2010
    Houston, TX
    lol, yes...I was surprised when I put the regular gauge set on there and had to turn down the bass knob substantially. They are amazing strings though, sound brutally awesome with a pick if you're into that.
  10. droskobass


    Oct 8, 2007
    Montreal, Canada
    Former Part-Time, Non-Commission Employee MOOG Audio
    Hi Beams are indeed great strings, if you want even brighter also try D'addario Prosteels. I like both and switch from one to the other interchangably, even though they sound different, I like both just as much.

    I tend to use these string on my "Fender style basses" though: Jazzes, PJ's my Mike Lull etc. On My Active music mans it's either Sunbeams, Low rider nickel or D;addario Nickel... I like all just as much.... and for Flats it's Thomastik Infeld. 90% of the time. they sound amazing.
  11. /\/\3phist0

    /\/\3phist0 ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) mmm Woody! Supporting Member

    I like low riders esp for slap because they're stiffer I can get lower action without fret buzz. And having a stiffer string helps right hand because a played string isn't flopping all over the place .
  12. AndrewM


    Feb 10, 2013
    This sounds like they might be the string for me. Just have a few questions about them though :D

    So these strings (Lo-Riders) have a pretty bright sound to them, as you've all said. But would you consider them to be "metallic" in sound? I would like to try to avoid a super clangy tone.

    Also, since they're nice and stiff, I bet I could get some great crunchy tones out of them by playing really hard fingerstyle :p
  13. AdamR

    AdamR Supporting Member

    Sep 24, 2007
    Bethel CT
    I switched from Rotosound swing 66 to Low Riders. The low Riders have a bit less treble but a lot more low mids. I like them but I wish they had silk ends. I havent tried High Beams yet.
  14. GroovinOnFunk


    Apr 30, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Endorses Cleartone and SIT Strings
    The brighter you go, the more metallic and clangy it'll get. Careful not to start contradicting yourself and saying you want the brightest tone, but don't want it to be very bright.

    With that said, any stainless steel strings are gonna be metallic. But in a band mix, it's just called sounding bright. That "metallic" sound gets drowned out a little. Here's a question: Do you like the Marcus Miller tone? If you say "yes" then Fat Beams and Hi-Beams are great.

    If you want to slap a lot, I'd lean towards round core and lower-tension string and NOT lo-riders.
  15. AndrewM


    Feb 10, 2013
    I didn't mean to sound contradictory, my mistake. And yes, the Marcus Miller tone is pretty incredible and something like that would be nice.

    In regards to the last part of your comment, why are low-tension strings better for slap than high-tension strings? It seems like high-tension would help add a bit of percussiveness to the tone.
  16. GroovinOnFunk


    Apr 30, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Endorses Cleartone and SIT Strings
    Do a little research on that on your own. But there are definitely people that prefer to slap on high-tension strings... but generally speaking (very generally speaking) the lower tension strings produce more bounce-back both when you strike with the side of your thumb and when you pop. A quick google search yields many many useful results! I'm not trying to be a "try the search button" nazi or anything... but you'll learn a lot by doing some research on your own first, THEN formulating some questions based on the information you have gathered... then the TB users would probably be more able to help you.
  17. GroovinOnFunk


    Apr 30, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    Endorses Cleartone and SIT Strings
    But the real easy answer is: If you like the Marcus Miller tone, why not start off by trying his signature strings? DR Fat Beams (which are a round-core, fairly low-tension, stainless steel string wound at a slower speed for fatter bottom)
  18. AndrewM


    Feb 10, 2013
    I understand what you mean completely. Also, thank you for not being rude about suggest me to do some research. Others may not have been as polite :p

    Also, after a little bit of googling, I feel that high-tension strings might be better for me, as I have a fairly aggressive playing style and lower-tension strings might feel a bit floppy. Thanks for the help

    EDIT: I also like to play in drop tunings occasionaly, but not usually any lower than drop D. I think a hex-core string might help keep the tension a little better than a round-core, without getting a thicker gauge set of strings. I don't know if there's any validity to that belief, I'm just guessing. I would assume that any same-gauge string tuned to the same pitch would have the same tension, but the "flexibility" of the string would depend on the core and material
  19. tylerwylie


    Jan 5, 2008
    Dunwoody, GA
    I'll use some meaningless subjective terms here, but I'd describe lower tension strings as snappier, with more responsiveness in the treble content to your attack, while the string settling in after the attack will have more low end than strings with higher tension.

    And I'd describe strings with higher tension as sounding a little backed off on the attack but having a throatier tone with more upper mid and treble content in the sustained note afterwards.
  20. Rockin Mike

    Rockin Mike

    May 27, 2011
    The punchiest strings I have tried are the Circle-K balanced strings. Kind of like Rotosounds, but more consistent.

    As for brightness, that's what my treble knob is for. I can get more than enough brightness out of any strings with EQ.

    Circle-K's sound like good coffee tastes. Mmmm.
    Plus the balanced tension feels really good.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Mar 7, 2021

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