Nickel Vs. Steel

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by BassGreaser, Dec 7, 2002.

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  1. BassGreaser


    Aug 22, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I'm looking at getting some new round wounds for my 5er. Which are better Nickel or steel? I'm looking at getting DR strings.
  2. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Depends on what kind of tone you are after.

    Nickels are a little mellower sounding, steels are a little brighter and more aggressive sounding.

    Steels lose their brightness more quickly than nickels do. But a 2 week old set of steels generally still sounds brighter than new nickels.

    Nickels are softer and easier on your fingers and frets. Steels are harder and usually coarser in feel. They will eat up your frets more quickly, and if you're not used to them, they can tear up your fingers.
  3. BassGreaser


    Aug 22, 2002
    Austin, TX
    yeah I have some really ****ty steel strings on my FBB 5er....I think Nickel is the way to go. I've been using flats on my Almebic Spoiler, and have been playing that bass of quit so time. i love the feel of flats! too bad the sound isn't as bright as round wounds
  4. FretNoMore

    FretNoMore * Cooking with GAS *

    Jan 25, 2002
    The frozen north
    I'm thinking nickels for fretless and steel for fretted - but it's probably more to do with style, mellower for ballads, brighter for rock.

    Anyone know if nickel allergy can be triggered by strings?
  5. I totally agree with this. And even though I pretty much use my electric for rockin'-out, I just plain prefer the "feel" amd mellowness of nickel. Especially the Pure nickel sets that Fender sells. I believe everyone else's (including DR) is nickel "wrap".
  6. Besides of the traditional mellow vs. bright and soft feeling vs. coarse, I have a suspicion that nickel strings have a more dark and 'closed' sound, where as steel strings has a more open balanced sound. That's my experience so far. (I've tried XL's, Slowounds, Slinkies and Blue Steels, George L's and all DR steel strings).
    Any thoughts on that?
  7. BassGreaser


    Aug 22, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Which DR strings should I get? I'm looking for a balanced sounded. I'm probably going to for with steel strings for my 5 string. the bass has a pair of Aero single coil pickups.
  8. All DR's are balanced string to string. If you're looking for strings that's balanced tone-wise (i.e. no scooped mids and so on) you should probally get the Fat-Beams. To me that was the string with the most even sound in all frequencies. Hi-Beams are a bit cheaper, but a little more scooped in the mids, but still fairly balanced.
    Remember that's what I hear through my gear (a Stingray5 through SWR)

    Hope it helped.
  9. Mazinger

    Mazinger Supporting Member

    Nov 9, 2002
    I prefer nickle. I used to buy the swingbass 66LD.I've been using Roto RB45 lately (a lot cheaper too).

    Now I'm looking for a 5 string nickle set. Can't find any nickle rotos in a 5.
  10. thiessen3.14

    thiessen3.14 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2002
    wichita, ks
    i used to play the highbeams years ago and thought they were great...until the sunbeams. so, i guess, try 'em both and decide for yourself. i know, they're not cheap, but if you find the strings you'll be happy with for some time to come, i think it's worth it. just a side note, the dr sunbeams are very quiet with respect to finger/fret noise compared to the highbeams. also the sunbeams last a long time and feel great. i don't find them too dark--they just seem to have a bit more growl. i play them on my fretted and fretless, and can say i'm perfectly content in the string department--no more trying different brands and doing setups.
  11. jasonbraatz


    Oct 18, 2000
    Oakland, CA
    been a while since i've had to do anything in here, but...

    this has been covered quite often, take a look in the FAQ for DR links, stainless vs. nickel links, etc..


    -the mgmt

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