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Question for TI Flat Fans...

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by BassJuju, Jan 12, 2021.

  1. BassJuju

    BassJuju Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2016
    I’m trying to like these strings. I’ve had them on several basses and currently have them a new bass. Rehearsal is tonight, so we will see how that goes, but this my observation so far.

    If I play the bass solo, just practice, I’m ready to rip them off the bass immediately. I ordered another set of flats today for that very reason.

    However, in preparing for rehearsal, I played them with a recording and they are magic in the mix! Tonight will be the final test.

    Is this another case of playing at home sounds good, mix bad. And, if the mix sounds good, home bad?

    What say you?
  2. bassdude51

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

    Nov 1, 2008
    Central Ohio
    I love TI Flats. But, I don't think that they are the one and only flat wound string for everybody.

    They definitely are not a string for solos, generally speaking.

    The "living room" sound is definitely different than the "live band" scenario with anything, speakers, amp setting, strings. Seems like what has been posted here on TalkBass, the "in the mix" sound doesn't sound as good as the "living room" sound with the "smiley face" eq setting.

    I guess you'll just have to find out with rehearsal tonight. Bring 2 basses with different strings, maybe.
    mikecd1, JRA and 2saddleslab like this.
  3. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    this is generally a pretty good rule of thumb for anyone playing with more than just a drummer.
  4. BasEd


    Jun 27, 2017
    When I used TI flats on a P bass they sounded great at home and at gigs. I did find they were a bit of a one trick pony though, albeit and very good trick. I now prefer rounds on my P bass which are better for slap and have more sizzle. But TI strings on a P bass with the tone down to 80-90% is hard to beat for a classic P bass tone.
    trothwell and EatS1stBassist like this.
  5. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    Lots of great flat wounds out there. TI's just happen to bring out the best on all my basses. As stated above, solo vs a band mix is huge and I find TI's really sing in the mix. Only a live test will tell.

    Keep us posted.
  6. BobbyT


    Feb 19, 2017
    Short answer: yes.

    I played TIJFs for 2-3 years in a variety of settings from contemporary pop to jazz fusion to Motown and I have always been pleased with how they sound “in the mix.”

    Playing solo it’s easy to convince yourself that you need more bass or treble response but in a typical live band setup they just work.
    fclefgeoff likes this.
  7. BasEd


    Jun 27, 2017
    When practicing I have my multi effects pedal connected to my laptop as well as my gigging rig (900W 4x10). I can play music on the laptop which goes to the rig along with the sound from my bass. I play it quietly of course! This way I can hear exactly what my bass sounds like in the mix. Very different to playing it on its own. Strings that are too sizzly dry can cut through nicely in the mix.
  8. BassJuju

    BassJuju Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2016
    Thanks for all the responses.

    They sounded great at rehearsal last night. I am not surprised as they sounded great here when played with the tracks. The Fletcher Munson curve notion can effect that a little differently, but it was very good.

    The thing that caught me off guard was just how different it was. There is always a difference and I EQ differently for different situations, but man, solo'd through an amp or Helix Native they were just junk, like rip them off and cut them into tiny pieces, blech! In the mix, magic. I certainly will add this notion emphatically to posts in the future related to TI Flats.
    WestyBassBob likes this.
  9. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    Glad they worked for you in the mix.:thumbsup:

    Having been at this for over 3 decades an early lesson learned was a not so great sounding bass played by itself can still exceed in a band mix.

    However, w/ TI flats I find my basses sound their best with or without any other instruments involved. That's how I knew these were the strings for me. You might come to love the solo tone as well.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
  10. BassJuju

    BassJuju Supporting Member

    Jul 9, 2016

    Maybe... My favorite flats are Dunlop with La Bella being a close second. I use very heavy Boomers when it comes to round, but not that often. I dig flats.

    This second set of TI's started off on a P and then went to a EBMM and then I sat them on a shelf. Those previous cases didn't sound great anywhere. I read here that someone liked them on a Ric and so I thought I'd try them one last time. I was waiting on a few pieces to mod the Ric, but I had felt like I would replace them when I made all of those other changes. The pre-cut Dunlops didn't fit and the TI's went back on. Things do happen for a reason.
  11. bolophonic

    bolophonic Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    I have been playing TI’s since the beginning of the pandemic, which means that I’ve been cooped up in the house, practicing unplugged. I love the feel of them, but I barely know what they sound like through my amp. I guess it’ll be a big surprise someday.
    PlatoFunFactory and nixdad like this.
  12. Kevin Teed

    Kevin Teed

    Mar 8, 2013
    I like TI flats on my old Rick either in a band mix (just a couple people) or solo at home, however my favorite band mix bass is my old P with Fender flats. It's just right!
    BassJuju likes this.
  13. coyote1


    Mar 23, 2012
    For those of you saying you dislike the ‘solo’ sound of these:

    Are they the TI Jazz flats, with the silk inlay?
    If so, can you describe what it is about the solo sound that you dislike?
  14. I rotate through sets of flats though none are ever thrown away. TIs have been on my active PJ5 for a while now. I love the way the feel and how they sound with the band, especially when I want that vintage, slighty dirty sound. They eq well and I have found then to be quite versatile for what I need.
  15. drumvsbass


    Aug 20, 2011
    Another bass player discovers the bigger picture of bass tone.
    NKBassman likes this.
  16. mikecd1

    mikecd1 Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2009
    New England
    Def not the strings for soloing IMO. I'd never think of using them for doing any solos, but for thick, warm thumpy, in the pocket goodness they are fab. My go-to string on the hoffy. Have tried these on several other basses and they don't work on everything IME. YMMV
  17. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    Old worn TI jazz rounds sound best to my ear. Little bit of twang.
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  18. filwitheneff


    Feb 22, 2008
    Yes, they are magic in the mix! I've had the same set of TI Flats on my P-Bass since May 2015, and they always sound good to my ears when playing with others. I like the tone so much that I'm not afraid to use that tone on any song that my band does.

    To be clear, I'm not suggesting that my tone is "versatile". I'm saying it's just one tone that, to ME, works really well with almost everything. Some will disagree, but I'm OK with that.
  19. mambo4


    Jun 9, 2006
    Rounds emphasize timbre in the mix
    Flats emphasize pitch in the mix

    That's how I think of it, in general.
    drumvsbass, pellomoco14 and bmusic like this.
  20. WillyWonka

    WillyWonka "zero" fret Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2019
    I don't think they are the best string on the planet, but they are OK.

    10 minutes to change strings and intonate, AND my amp has knobs that turn, so a good sound can be had from most anything.

    Just another tool in the arsenal.
  21. Primary

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    Jan 25, 2021

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