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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DWLANG, Feb 16, 2013.



    Jan 23, 2013
    Bartlett, IL
    I recently purchased a gorgeous Höfner CT 500/7 Verythin bass and put Thomastic Infeld Jazz flatwound 32 strings on it.

    Not only is it beautiful, it's super lightweight, it's short scale is uber playable, and it sounds fantastic EXCEPT for the E string.

    Open E, F, and F# are very muddy. :help:

    I brought it to my luthier and he lowered the neck pup and it made it slightly better, and I've spent too much time trying to fix the issue w/ my amp settings (Fender Bassman TV10, TV15, and Ampeg PF350 w/ 210)

    What's confusing me is that everything on the other strings (A,D,G) is perfect...

    Hollowbody bass dudes...help!
  2. fesem

    fesem Supporting Member

    Nov 11, 2004
    Blacksburg, VA
    I had this problem with the Thomastic's, went to Chromes and no problem. I even contacted Thomastic and they sent me another E string, same thing. I don't know why, maybe they are better for long scales.
  3. doublebassists mix strings as needed. maybe that would work for you and your hofner?


    Jan 23, 2013
    Bartlett, IL
    How would you compare the Chromes to the Jazz flats vs. rounds?


    Jan 23, 2013
    Bartlett, IL
    I'm starting to think so...that and my luthier doesnt have much (if any) experience working with Höfners other than mine....
  6. GM60466


    May 20, 2006
    Land of Lakland
    Try some D'addario on the bottom
  7. Low Main

    Low Main Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2004
    I would make sure that the E string is properly seated at all 3 critical points: tailpiece, bridge and nut. Your luthier has probably already done that.

    Check the nut slot to make sure the back edge of the slot (nearest the tuners) is properly relieved so that the string only sits on the front edge of the nut. Also enlarge the slot if needed so the string sits at the bottom of the slot.

    IME, flats are fussier than rounds in terms of proper installation. I learned this the hard way by killing strings. Important to make a 90 degree bend in the string to go into the tuner post before trimming off the excess length after the bend. This keeps the integrity of the wraps intact. Trimming to length before making the bend can release the tension on the wraps and kill the string.

    I like Chromes, but not as much as T-I's or LaBellas. The Chromes to me do not have the same depth, warmth, and complexity as the others.

    The thing I like about T-I's is that they have less fret clank than other flats especially above the 10th fret. With some HB's this is important, as the resonant body will magnify those fret sounds.

    Also, the string may have become twisted along its length. Grab the string at around the third fret and pull it away from the nut while detuning it until it is floppy and the ball end is loose at the tailpiece. Then capo the string at the first fret and keep pulling the string toward the tailpiece. See if the ball end rotates at all. If so, there was some twist in the string. Let the string lay on the bass in its untwisted state and retension it with the capo still on until the ball end grabs the tailpiece. Then if needed, work out any impressions in the string due to how it previously broke over the bridge, take the capo off, and retune the string to full pitch.

    If none of this helps with the existing string, I would make a third attempt with another replacement T-I E string before giving up on the T-I's entirely.

    I wouldn't think there would be a dead spot on the neck in that location, but with a short scale neck and a large headstock, I suppose it's possible. Could always experiment with adding some mass to the headstock to see if such a dead spot could be shifted or eliminated.
    old-fashioned likes this.
  8. I'd suggest something a little different, which I've done on my Hofners over 40 years.
    Raise the E string side of the neck pick up closer to the string.


    Jan 23, 2013
    Bartlett, IL
    Good advise....alot ot tinker with! Thanks!
  10. DWLANG


    Jan 23, 2013
    Bartlett, IL
    Raise rather than lower??
  11. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    I would get some Pyramid Flats every open string is beautiful.
  12. DWLANG


    Jan 23, 2013
    Bartlett, IL
    I have those on my 500/1 '63 Reissue, and that's muddy as well...which makes me think that my luthier needs more educating in the world of Höfners
  13. Charles Thomsen

    Charles Thomsen

    Oct 5, 2016
    I have the Höfner '64 reissue (made in Germany). Bought it new in 2015. It has the muddy low e string with no sustain. Dead fret at no 7. It is not a well made instrument and the parts are low quality.
    My bass can't handle 0.95 flatwound so I replaced it with 0.75. That means the e string and the a string is the same thickness. This the bass can handle and it doesn't sound totally dead. No miracles to be expected but a bit more sustain and cleans up the sound a little.
    The Höfner bass is still a piece of junk though.
  14. I have heard a lot of people describe that they have dead E strings. Usually they switch the string with another one or completely change the set entirely. That usually fixes the issue. By nature, that's how Hofners sound. They usually don't have much sustain and sometimes will sound dead (especially E). They are constructed like upright basses. They sound like them to a point. They're much different than a solid body. If you want a modern sound, I would suggest installing a set of round wound. In terms of the build....If you're comparing it to a solid body, it will seem 'junky'. Like I said, the construction on the two are COMPLETELY different. You can't beat them like you would a solid but the craftsmanship is top. You have to treat them delicately.