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Rounds suggestion for die hard flat player

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Selim, Jul 13, 2020.


  1. Selim

    Selim Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    New York City
    Other than one summer tour a few years ago using GHS Pressurewounds, I’ve been a die hard flat wound player for eons — that’s also about how long since I’ve used round wound strings (other than the above).

    I have a very nice 90s Fernandes with A/C pickups (beats the pants off of even vintage jazz basses btw) that I’d like to try with some rounds.

    What’s a round wound to recommend to someone like me?

    clang, bite, grrrrrowl, etc. — those words make me run for the hills (and to my string drawer to yank those suckers off ASAP).

    For flats, I like and use La Bella LTFs, La Bella 43-104, old Sadowsky blacks, and also the new Dunlop flats.
     
  2. MonetBass

    MonetBass ♪ Just listen ♫ Supporting Member

    Sep 15, 2006
    Tulsa, OK
    For my Jazz bass, I really like DR Sunbeams. They mellow out pretty quickly (not that they're bright initially) and sound great for a long time.
     
  3. GHS Balanced Nickels (pure nickel roundwound on a round core). Deep, focused lows with smooth mids. No clang!
     
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Get a set of Dunlop Super Bright Nickels and let them go dead. When that happens, they sound like the Dunlop flats when they're new.
     
  5. PICATO Nickel Roundwounds 7324F03E-4D58-4A78-9663-94AAFF8A6344.jpeg
    Not as bright as stainless steel roundwounds. More balanced, without such clang & bite. More like the sound of the Pressurewound.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2020
    Selim likes this.
  6. lz4005

    lz4005

    Oct 22, 2013
    Why do you want rounds if you don't want them to sound like rounds? Either embrace the nature of the tool or don't use it.
     
  7. Selim

    Selim Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    New York City
    But they are not all growly and clangy yes?

    There must be rounds that are punchy and weighty and have a nice, dark purr — that might appeal to players who pledge allegiance primarily to the flat wound kind of sonic presentation?
     
    kinnon64, MonetBass and michael_t like this.
  8. Selim

    Selim Supporting Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    New York City
    Having used D flats, I know what you’re talking about.
     
  9. Fender4Me

    Fender4Me Supporting Member

    I think you would like D'addario XL nickel wounds. They compare well to flats for me.
     
  10. I've always found the D'A XL Nickels to be a little too zingy and even brittle for me. Certainly not the kind the OP wants that are "punchy and weighty and have a nice, dark purr".
     
  11. e-flat

    e-flat Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2009
    Washington State
    I’m a fan of such Rounds, and in addition to the recommendations above I’d recommend trying any of the following:

    - Pyramid Pure Nickel - after about 2-3 weeks, the low end “blooms” a bit and they keep their clarity but warm up and round off the treble a lot. Beautiful strings.

    - DR Nickel Lo Riders- a little more “zing” than Pyramids but with a great low midrange. I find them tonally similar to Sunbeams but with a tighter low end & a little more meat in the low mids.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2020
  12. You might want to specify for the OP you're talking about the NICKEL Lo-Riders.
     
  13. e-flat

    e-flat Supporting Member

    Jun 15, 2009
    Washington State
    Fixed!
     
    eriky4003 and michael_t like this.
  14. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    Sunbeams for the win!
     
  15. Flat-N-Round

    Flat-N-Round

    Jun 30, 2020
    Definitely DR Pure Blues or Sunbeams.
     
  16. TemplesOfSyrinx

    TemplesOfSyrinx Supporting Member

    Sep 8, 2013
    New Jersey
    I'm a die-hard LaBella flats player. Just gets me that tone and vibe I like. Fast forward to 2020. All of our gigs that we now have are all outdoors here in New Jersey. It's 90° every day with mid to high humidity. Playing flats in that weather became challenging because they became very sticky. I turned to installing a set of GHS Pressurewound strings on one of my Precision bass guitars. All I have to say is wow! They sound great, a bit brighter than my flats. But much easier to play with the high humidity and I have no intention of changing them so hopefully they will deaden over time.
     
  17. MD-BassPlayer

    MD-BassPlayer Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Maryland
    I use Sunbeams or Pure Blues most of the time. Pure Blues tend to be easier to find in stores. I've also used String Joy strings and like them on a four string, but had a B string that went dead very, very quickly and their CS response was that, huh, sometimes that happens.
     
    MonetBass and B-Lo like this.
  18. Low Commotion

    Low Commotion Supporting Member

    Dec 31, 2007
    Ontario
    Another vote for Sunbeams!
     
    MonetBass and bobyoung53 like this.
  19. bradd

    bradd Supporting Member

    Jan 27, 2008
    Minneapolis, MN
    Sunbeams or TI Jazz Rounds. The TIs will be a little growly at first but will mellow out over time. Both of these strings will be easier on your fingertips as well.
     
  20. sonojono

    sonojono Supporting Member

    When the PW’s will go dead, you’ll love them! They feel like flats but not too sticky like you mentioned in hot weather and the tone is more in the flats territory.
     
    TN WOODMAN and TemplesOfSyrinx like this.

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