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Obligato E & A with Gut

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by Kevinlee, Jul 22, 2005.


  1. Kevinlee

    Kevinlee

    May 15, 2001
    Phx, AZ..USA
    Anyone tried mixing Obligato E & A with plain gut G & D ?
    I know there's been lots of discussion on mixing some kind of synthetic or wrapped string on the bottom with plain gut on top but I didn't see much about Obligato for this set up.

    I'm thinking solo obligato tuned to orch pitch. My strings are set fairly high right now with all plain guts, and I like it. However I've got a recording session coming up where I'm going to need more articulation on the bottom.

    Any and all comments welcome
    Thanks
    Kevinlee
     
  2. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    I hate personally hate Obligatos. I know people think that Obligatos would be a good match for guts but I find them to be really lacking. They sound so "synthetic" with a really pathetic "mwah" pizz sound. Then there's the arco rolling. I would think solo Obligatos tuned down would be even worse. Anyway, just my opinion. For the bottom what about Dominants, Permanents, or Helicore Hybrid heavies (I have some if you're interested)?
     
  3. Kevinlee

    Kevinlee

    May 15, 2001
    Phx, AZ..USA
    Thanks for the input Adrian. I know your a gut player so I value your opinion. I've tried dominants, and while I like them as a whole set I didn't find them to be the best match with gut. Just to much of a difference in sound on my bass.

    How would you rate the Permanents & Helicore Hybrid heavies? Tone and tension? My strings are farily high at the moment (which works well for the gut) so I don't want something to tense or stiff.

    Thanks
    Kevinlee
     
  4. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    I have not tried Permanents yet. I have a Permanent extension string on order and I'm waiting for it to arrive. I have a Dominant A on right now and I'm liking it although it still does have a bit of a metallic twang on the pizz. I am having to use a used Spirocore on the extension right because it's the only thing I could get at the time that had the volume and strength of fundamental I wanted. So I thought another Thomastik string might be a good match.

    I liked the Helicore Hybrid heavies and in fact had planned to keep using them but at the time I couldn't get hold of an extension string when I had my extension installed. I found them to be a good match for the guts and pizz and arco quite nicely.

    I played someone's New Standard Cleveland the other day and he had an Oliv G and new Helicore Hybrid mediums on the other strings. The D and the A were beautiful - really, really nice in every way. The E was lacking and we weren't sure if it was the string or the bass (I suspected the string - I wonder if the heavy gauge would have done the trick).
     
  5. AMJBASS

    AMJBASS Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2002
    Ontario, Canada
    Helicore Hybrid Heavy are really nice strings. They are loud, and have a nice fundamental. I actually have the Hybrid lights on right now and they are very nice as well. I find them to sound a little more gut like than the heavys. I needed to increase the string height a bit, but they have a little less sustain, and a little more "bounce".
     
  6. Bobby King

    Bobby King Supporting Member

    May 3, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Try the Innovation 140H E&A. I find that they have more punch and less "mwah" than Obligato.
     
  7. The best match I`ve found is helicore orch. lights . Perfect match for timbre,sustain and volume, IMO, OMB.
     
  8. TroyK

    TroyK Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    Just my $ .02, I always feel obligated to relate that for people (like me) who have problems with Obligatos "rolling" it is the E and A strings that the problem occurs with. I realize that there are people who they work for and people who they don't. I think if you like them and they hold up for you, use them as a set, I could see using just the G with some steel string (although) I couldn't get the tone to blend with anything. But I would hestitate the recommend using just the strings that they are likely to be problems with and mixing them with something else. Of course, YMMV.

    I like Permanents, conversely. Pirastro send me a set when I wrote them about my Obligato woes and I stuck with them for several sets. I'm taking a break from them for a while, but may come back to them. Hard to say how they would blend with guts, but they're a good string.

    Rufas Reid is his book says that his personal choice (as of whenever he wrote that book) was heavy gauge Helicores on E and A and OLIVs (steel wrapped gut) on D and G. So, it worked for someone. I'm not sure how different OLIVs sound vs unwrapped gut.

    Let us know.

    Troy
     
  9. Adrian Cho

    Adrian Cho Supporting Member

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ottawa, Canada
    Pizz is not too different but arco is dramatically different. You can get a sweet arco sound out of Olivs but for unwound gut, think Slam Stewart. Actually sounds really nice for solo stuff but in a section with steel strings, it sticks out like a sore thumb.
     
  10. My guitarist has a bass set up that way that I use during rehearsals - Obligato E & A, gut D & G. Personally, I think it's a TERRIBLE match (although not so bad that I'm willing to drag my bass at home and not use his!). The difference in tension is jarring to me, and the tone doesn't match up well either - again, very artificial sounding compared to the guts. I'd keep looking.