Old strings seem to stop getting older

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by themickster, Jun 22, 2020.

  1. themickster


    Oct 4, 2015
    This morning, I changed the strings I fitted on my Ibanez this time last year. They sounded like the 15+ year old on my Aria. It confirms my thought that strings deaden so far and stop. Why did I betray my fellow bass players by changing them? So that I can cut it against heavy guitars.
    e-flat likes this.
  2. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    If they are dead, I’ll change them, 4 years or 4 days. I don’t like dead strings.

    So, lucky me that these Daddario NYXLs on my bass now have been on there for 5 weeks. Still nice and bright, although not chalkboard out-of-the-pack bright. As expensive as they are, that’s a really good thing!...:D
    tindrum likes this.
  3. fretlessman71

    fretlessman71 Still beats havin' a job Supporting Member

    Aug 8, 2005
    FoCo, NoCo
    Old bass strings never die, they just get groovier.
    Bob E and bassdude51 like this.
  4. themickster


    Oct 4, 2015
    My Boss BB-1X on full overdrive makes dead strings sound the same as it does new. Even flatties sound lively.
  5. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Okay, the consecutive NYXLs let me down by a big margin, so it’s back to EXLs.

    I didn’t mention this in the first post, but while I like fairly new zingy strings on my fretted instruments, I like old dead roundwounds on my fretless basses. I’ll keep a set on them forever, or at least the strings don’t intimate properly. I keep a couple of old sets from my fretted bass around for that.
  6. Strings are like underwear.

    Regardless of how much you like them, eventually you will have to change them.
    bassdude51 likes this.
  7. Some people use strings that are like underwear. :D I like my strings the same way I like a pair of jeans - nicely worn in, but not worn out. ;)

    During the last 11 yrs I've been playing bass, I've never kept a set of strings on any bass long enough for them to be worn out. One of these days I should keep a set on long enough to see what "dead" strings actually sound like.
  8. bassdude51

    bassdude51 "You never even called me by my name." Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2008
    Central Ohio
    I agree with your observation on old strings.

    Some music calls for the bass to have new strings. Other music calls for the bass to have old strings.

    Flats last until they break.
    2saddleslab likes this.
  9. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    TI flats last until YOU break.:D
    bassdude51 likes this.
  10. I’m in a unique position that I’m in a project that really lends itself to a flat wound string/Ampeg SVT/P bass combination.

    I come from a definite background of SSRW strings as the norm, with DiAddario Pro Steels being my favorite string. What I like is the body of the string once it loses the super high shimmer with a great growl to it. My main P bass still wears these strings, probably always will.

    My fretless Jazz has worn the same set Chromes for the last 3-5 years, and they still sound great. But it gets played about a dime to the dollar my other bases do. I’ve tried a few different sets of strings on that, but always go back to that set. They don’t sound anywhere close to sounding dead to me.

    That being said I have a set of Chromes on another P bass, but they are a little bright for that setup. On my white P I have a set of EB cobalts, and really like the combination. It has a nice body to its sound, but unless I roll off the top a touch it’s too clanky.

    While I love Jamersons playing, I can’t stand the sound of his dead thuddy strings. I seem to be somewhere away from the boom and thud, looking for a midrange body to my sound. Sorry for the long prelude, but I wanted to lay it out.

    I like the feel of Cobalts in the 45-100 set, with the 40-95 being a little too lose. The Chromes are almost to much tension but doable.

    So saying this, I’m very interested in trying the TI flats, but worry they will be too lose for my liking. The midrange I’ve heard is very appealing, but I just worry about the tension. The cash for these is ok if they work, but too much if I don’t like them.

    I know this has been beat to death here, but I don’t want to waste my money. On the other side, I’ve learned what I like through experimentation.

    Sorry for the long rambling mess, just thinking out loud.
  11. themickster


    Oct 4, 2015
    I found that the Boss BB-1X makes dull strings sound the same as new. Even flatties sound lively with it. That means I can get away with nylon wounds to go with the black hardware on my SR300EB, without the flat sound. I'm up against heavy guitars and need the higher harmonics, to cut through.
  12. gigetto


    Sep 25, 2019
    When I change old strings some notes disappears. They're not stopping becoming older they are death....