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Loving the Mittel E-String with weichs, whole set as good?

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by Wilbyman, Mar 4, 2008.


  1. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Jason Hollar graciously sent me a lovely mittel E-string to use with my old Weich set. It is nicely broken in and sounds great. I play a pretty dark sounding carved german bass, and that E-string sounds really growly and "big"...in comparison, I feel like the weichs are kind of soft. The E-string, at least, does not sound overly bright on my bass (at least, broken in). Should I check out the rest of the mittel set or are the other strings much brighter than the E?

    W
     
  2. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard

    Apr 4, 2005
    Kansas City area
    KC Strings
    I find the G to be bright and on two basses, the D was a bit louder than the A. If you want to go to the Mittel you might like the Stark E better. The E just sounds a bit weak for the set. It all might work well on your bass though. YMMV.
     
  3. Marco Panascia uses a Mittel E with Weichs, so I don't think you're doing anything wrong there! :bassist:
     
  4. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Well, I think it is clear that Marco IS the man and his choices get much respect from me!!! Maybe that's my answer.
     
  5. Jason Hollar

    Jason Hollar It Don’t Mean A Thing... Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2005
    Pittsburgh area
    Cool -- glad that arrived already!

    I used a weich set w/mittel E for a while. Nice set.

    I found that having a mittel G & D on my bass sounded too powerful on the top end -- because the low end on my instrument isn't as pronounced.

    Now I'm using an Obli G & D (they are softer sounding & feeling), plus a mittel A and the STARK E...a good balance on my bass...this winter anyway!
     
  6. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Maui
    Love that combo...Mittel E, Weich everything else. One of my favorites.... I'm headed back there at some point, most likely.
     
  7. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard

    Apr 4, 2005
    Kansas City area
    KC Strings
    Jason,
    I'd be using the same if my G hadn't snapped. I like the Helicore Hybrids better though. They don't quite feel as nice, but seem to have more punch to them. Of course, the Obli's were done so who knows what good ones would sound like?
     
  8. gnergaard

    gnergaard Supporting Member

    May 31, 2002
    Chicago, IL USA
    There are many much more experienced posters here than I but for what it's worth I recently switched from weichs to mittels. After 8 months and a set up and soundpost adjustment I would have to agree that the Spirochore sets all seem to have slightly weaker E strings. I thought that the Weich E was a little too soft and now i believe that the mittel E is a little low in output, too- at least compared to the rest of the respective sets.
    These observations are made with my 40's American Standard and only apply to pizz- if you are concerned with arco I'd say that the spiro E strings are very powerful (once you get them started, that is!).
    I'll be looking to experiment with either a stark E, Mittel A,D,G or perhaps Mittel E, A Weich D, G, combination in the near future.
    One other note- these mittels are really tough! After 8 months of moderate use I'd say that they are still not broken in. They hold pitch exceptionally well, but I'm still waiting for them to get darker like my weichs did after 6 months or so.
     
  9. Marc Piane

    Marc Piane

    Jun 14, 2004
    Chicago
    STARK E
     
  10. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Hey guys-

    Jason, thanks for the string...I owe you a PM in gratitude. It got here just fine and it in great (but nicely broken in) shape.

    I am really enjoying the Mittel-E and Weich set, it sounds pretty even. I think I will just stay with it for a while. I don't believe I'm ready to step up to the Stark E/Mittel combination quite yet.

    Will
     
  11. Jason Hollar

    Jason Hollar It Don’t Mean A Thing... Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2005
    Pittsburgh area
    Strings vary so much.

    A whole set of Mittels on my bass feels very difficult to play -- yet the mighty Stark on the E provides balance.

    I played a teacher's bass once (an old German bass that cost 10K+) and the feel was so smooth and easy I could have sworn they were Weichs. Nope. Mittels.

    Clink -- I hear you about the breakage factor. I've been lucky that none of my Obli's have gone south...especially on a gig!
     
  12. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    Maui
    :D What are you trying to say here, Marc?
     
  13. Give your C bout (or any part of your bass for that matter) a hearty knock... QUICK!
     
  14. +1
    the cult of the stark e is gaining in power. resistance is futile and such.
     
  15. Jeremy Allen

    Jeremy Allen Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2002
    Bloomington, IN
    I can remember a time when I thought weichs were pretty perfect and mittels were ridiculously stiff. For some time now I've thought that mittels are as wussified as I'm willing to go, and I can never hang with a mittel G--I have to put something else on there, like a Dominant or an Evah Pirazzi or an Oliv (which is not of greater tension, but it certainly is of greater fatness). I can see a mittel E being an excellent mix with a weich set, but jumping to a Stark E with that set seems like it would be asking for trouble.

    I'd just try a mittel set if I were you. They are kind of the common ground of jazz bass strings; if you like them, you can put the Stark E on and experience bliss. Weichs are a unique thing, but I think you'll find the D and A strings of the mittel set to be related; the G is a different beast altogether.

    As usual, this depends on the bass. My axe that got destroyed was a great bass that sounded terrible with Spiro mittels, and the one I'm about to buy sounds like Jimmy Garrison/guts with the same strings. Just gotta spend the money and check it out.
     
  16. This thread resounds with me. Sympathetic vibrations. :D After 1+ years with a Spiro Weich set on one of my basses (I use gut on the other), I switched to a Mittel E with a Weich A + Belcanto D & G. The Weich E always sounded weaker on my bass, and the Mittle E is overall a better match in volume and tone with the others.

    Stark E with Mittels A & D, possibly some other G -- that's a great suggestion and would be something to think about. But don't you need more height off the fingerboard with the Starks and full Mittel sets? I'm generally down there pretty close to the fingerboard with the Weichs, and just wondered. Jeremy? Fingers? Anybody from the Cult of Stark?
     
  17. i'm running the same height with a stark e as i was when i was using an all mittel set and when i was using the weich-feeling corellis i got with the bass (not sure what gauge they really are). it does change tension pretty drastically (not to mention the stark e is effin beefy, it's like trying to play a hotdog). the E feels much more planted, controllable. the other strings tend to feel a little more wobbly in relation to it. whether that's from an increased imbalance in tension or simply a subjective difference between the feel of the strings, i couldn't really say.
     
  18. so... the tension is so much, like 75 lbs (so i've read) that you can slap the E and it doesn't rattle against the fingerboard even at a "low" height for an E like 8 mm?
     
  19. Try a Bel Canto G with your Mittel E and Weich A and D. This combo puts out a great pizz sound. The Weich D needs lots of playing to settle it down though. Lots of body and projection on my German ply. No maintenance.
     

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