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New Ernie Ball Flats impressions

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by SUNNyday r., Jun 17, 2007.

  1. SUNNyday r.

    SUNNyday r.

    Oct 17, 2006
    Bay Area
    Bought these yesterday because I wanted a flat that was more traditional in flavor and was available at my local shop. I bought the Group III .45-.100 and right out of the package I thought they were Chromes. They look like they are wound the same and even have a similar blue silk. I was sort of bummed. I was put off enough to put them on my Warwick Corvette instead of my Ibanez Blazer (a Pbass clone) because I thought they would sound much like Chromes which don't have a classic flatwound tone to my ears. The Corvette has had Chromes on it before and their ringing/brighter tone sounded cool on it. Got the Ernie Balls on and they really are nothing like the Chromes except in looks. They are smoother and far less bright and twangy. Smooth and buttery with a nice and even decay. Musical and not just outright dead thump(which will be fun to see if they get to that dead thump sound at some point in the future). I also liked the fact that they are less tense under my fingers than the Chromes of the same gauge. They seem like they will mellow nicely into an even more vintage tone with time. I will be switching them to the Blazer now that I have found them to be what I was looking for. I let the looks fool me into thinking I had bought a Chrome's clone but these have turned into a fun surprise!:hyper:
    armybass likes this.
  2. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Lakewood, OH
    I just put EB Flats on my SR5 and WOW:eek: I love them. Great musical tone and they lost their zing very fast. They're already sounding great after just 1 day of playing.
    armybass likes this.
  3. saxnbass


    Mar 9, 2006
    Nashville, TN
    I had them on an SR5 and they are very nice flats. I'm not a big fan of their rounds, but the flats are great.
    armybass likes this.
  4. SUNNyday r.

    SUNNyday r.

    Oct 17, 2006
    Bay Area
    I felt obligated to post my observations because there is not that much about Ernie Ball flats on TB. Not much on the Dean Markley flats either except the consensus seems to be that they have almost no sustain at all. I almost gave them a shot but they only had the .50-.105 set and I sensed major high tension just holding the Dean Markley package!:eek: Glad I went with the Ernie Ball set but still wouldn't mind trying the Dean Markley set down the road. Anyone else out there use either of these flats?
  5. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    I have the EB flats on my DiPinto Belvedere semi-hollow, where they deliver serious old-school thump, but with decent sustain. They record extremely well, but I think the Belvedere would rule the studio with just about any string. :D I think they've improved over time, especially in feel because I thought they were too sticky at first. I like the tension.

    I also use Chromes on a fretless Precision, so I'm familiar with them. I agree with your comparison of the EB flats to the Chromes. But I like the extra brightness of the Chromes, and would be more likely to play a live rock gig with them over the mellower EB flats or GHS Precision flats. The aptly-named GHS flats produce spectacular vintage tone on my fretted P-bass, so I can't bear to take them off. I guess I need another P-bass for some rounds. :cool:
  6. SUNNyday r.

    SUNNyday r.

    Oct 17, 2006
    Bay Area
    Took a few minutes to put them on the old Blazer. They will need to mellow out for sure. It will be fun to wait for them to settle. They are a bit tangy right now. I have TI's also and they sound WAY better when they calm down. I hope it is the same with these. I have another Blazer that needs a fret job that I want to put rounds on too for the best of both worlds.
  7. PocketGroove82


    Oct 18, 2006
    I have Group IIIs on my SR5 HH and my Fretless 30th Anniversary SR4.
    They are excellent. I use that SR5 for everything from jazz, to rock, country, funk, to disco. Great strings on a great bass.

    On the Fretless, they are nice, pillowy and mellow, but can mwaah when you want them too.
  8. One Drop

    One Drop

    Oct 10, 2004
    Swiss Alps
    I'm really curious about tha DM flats as well. Apparently they are very even string to string, and have a fairly traditional flat sound. I haven't heard they lack sustain; Robbie Shakespeare has used them on all his basses for decades and likes them super dead, and he gets plenty of sustain live anf in the studio. And he sounds HUGE with them.
  9. markdavid


    Jun 29, 2007
    just to add my experienc ewith the Ernie Ball flats, I tried these and did not care for them at first , however once I had them on for a while the brightness died down considerably and they now have more of a typical flatwound thump. I now really like these strings , they are much fuller and warmer sounding than D'addario chromes and feel very smooth to play and are very balanced sounding
  10. SwitchGear


    Mar 23, 2005
    Sunny Beach
    Group lll EB flats are my fave flatwound strings. I love them on my jazz bass. I currently have a set of light gauge Fender 9050's installed, because they where inexpensive. But I miss the EB group lll's very much and I am heading to the guitar store tomorrow to pick up a pair to restring. I have used many different brands of flats, yet these are my delights. I intially tried them because they where the only brand of flats in stock at my local store, and fell in love with them. Tension, feel, tone, everything. That's my experience.

    Perhaps I should keep quite and keep them a secret to prevent a price increase. Ah, what the heck, lol.
  11. I have EB 2804 flats on my Fender Standard Jazz and my Geddy Jazz. I really like the feel and they seem to be brighter and punchier than other flats I have tried.
  12. 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.

    Jan 17, 2021

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