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Rounds and flats

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Larz48, Mar 25, 2009.

  1. Larz48


    Aug 18, 2007
    Can you tell the difference between flatwound and roundwound strings just by looking? Is it possible? trying to settle a little friendly argument. Thanks. :eyebrow:
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    By looking at a bass player play bass on TV or on stage? No way. By looking at a bass close enough to see the windings, sure. Odd question, but there you go.
  3. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    True dat.
  4. Larz48


    Aug 18, 2007

    I meant up close, sorry. So what makes the windings different or how can you tell?
  5. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Flatwounds are flat. They have a flat surface. Roundwounds have a knobbly-spirally round-textured surface, they look like a tight-pressed spring. Strings are made by wrapping wire around a core. Flatwounds use flat wire, roundwounds use round wire.
  6. Well, see, the windings on roundwounds are round. The windings on flatwounds are flat.
  7. the engine

    the engine Guest

    Um...yes. Flats are smooth and rounds are bumpy. In fact, just about any of the senses will tell you the difference. They LOOK different. They SOUND different. They FEEL different. (And I imagine they even taste and smell different). They are THAT different. Easy....I'm just having fun with you. But the short answer is yes. You CAN tell the difference by looking at them. Cheers.
  8. Bass strings have a core string.
    Roundwound strings have a round metal wire wound around that core and so you can see the ridges in them. Flats have a flat metal strip wound around the core so it looks and feels smooth. There are also half-round strings where the highest level of a roundwound is ground down to flat-topped ridges.
    Each gives a particular type of sound. Rounds = bright. Flats = thumpy. Halves = mid.
    Hope this is clear -- I'm going to bed. :)
  9. bassstrings.

    Flats, halves, rounds.
  10. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
  11. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    A picture is worth 1,000 words :D
  12. LOL :D
  13. Flintlock


    Jul 3, 2007
    I think he's lying.
  14. Hawk_GP


    Oct 5, 2005
    So, tell me you won the argument with your friend:bag:
  15. Dogbertday

    Dogbertday Commercial User

    Jul 10, 2007
    SE Wisconsin
    Blaine Music LLC

    What are strings?
  16. Larz48


    Aug 18, 2007
    Well, it was kind of a draw but I was more correct in how they were wound. I just remember them looking differently then I first thought, the flats I mean. Thanks for the pic also adamrobertt, that solved alot right there. So now we both know.:smug:
  17. ProfGumby


    Jan 15, 2007
    Michigan's U.P.
    Okay.....let me get this straight. There are other strings tha flatwounds? Why?
  18. ProfGumby


    Jan 15, 2007
    Michigan's U.P.

    Everything else from your post on is pure stuff and nonsense....especially mine!
  19. kirkm24


    Jan 1, 2007
    Columbus, Ohio
    Some flatwounds have spacing betwen the wraps which can make them look kind of like rounds. The DR flats are the tightest wrapped strings I have seen.
  20. b4nny


    Aug 24, 2008
    Bellevue, WA, USA
    Flats also have a shinier look and more consistent shade over the string than rounds, because flats have a flat, smooth surface while rounds have a bumpy surface.

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