1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Spirocore or Belcanto quandry

Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by carl h., Mar 8, 2019.

  1. Belcanto

    0 vote(s)
  2. Spirocore

    14 vote(s)
  1. I have both on hand so the expense is a non issue, well now anyway after the fact...

    I picked up a carved bass I intended to use in a local orchestra, so bowing was primarily how I intended to use it, BUT I have left that organization and so my needs for the instrument have changed.

    I have an older bass I'd rather not be using for everything in all seasons that is set up for orchestral playing. This new bass was to be the backup/replacement so the delicate instrument didn't get schlepped around all winter/ summer.

    I'm primarily looking at amplified pizz gigs now so I'm not sure if I should still go ahead with the Belcanto or use the Spirocores. I want it to still be reasonably responsive to the bow, but also want a livelier pizz with usable sustain for slow pieces.
  2. Spirocores all the way then. If you have the mediums, you could also try Spiros on E A and Belcantos on D G. A few of my friends have used that setup before and if your bass likes it, it can sound and feel pretty darn good.
  3. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard

    Apr 4, 2005
    Kansas City area
    KC Strings

    You just have to try it. Some basses sound pretty dark with Spirocores.
    Mgaisbacher and carl h. like this.
  4. doghousebob


    Mar 7, 2008
    While I'm not a huge fan of Spirocores, on my bass, Belcanto were phenomenal under the bow but didn't have nearly enough sustain and were way dark for pizz jazz. Even amplified, the BC didn't sustain (or cut) any where near what the Spiros do.
    carl h. likes this.
  5. Bel G over Spiros and don’t change them for years.
    carl h., doghousebob and Sam Dingle like this.
  6. Bijoux


    Aug 13, 2001
    I actually use Spiros for Orchestra,.... go figure! I love them and I have learned over the years how to make them work with arco.
    On the other hand Belcantos for Jazz are definitely not my favorite. They felt a bit loose and din't project much. Also I wasn't able to get a good sound amplified with the Realist.
    On my big 7/8 bass I use Evahs. I still prefer Spiros on that one too, but I do a lot of big band stuff and the Evahs have that old school sound.
    I also tried the Kaplans as a hybrid type of string but I felt that as the Belcantos they had a pretty dead sound that was also hard to amplify.
    As far as bowing they were great, easy to bow, but I also felt like they could get a bit muddy blending with the section. Spiros and Evahs were more defined.
    In case it matters my bow weights 142 grams and it has white hair, it feels very light and well balanced.
    JC Nelson, carl h. and Sam Dingle like this.
  7. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    New Orleans
    I was strongly told by my teacher and 2 other section players in the local orchestra to change my strings from spiros to something else for an upcoming performance and later audition because they said my sound was way too bright for them. Even on my dark bass (which weirdly got brighter recently...)

    So I’m gonna try belcantos MAYBE keeping the Spiro C string. If I hate those I have no idea what else to try...what are arco strings haha
    carl h. likes this.
  8. Phil Rowan

    Phil Rowan Supporting Member

    Mar 2, 2005
    Brooklyn, NY
    I was once advised to swap Spiros mittels out for a darker, more section-blendable string as well. My arco bass is a bright-ish Benedict Lang hybrid, which has been wearing Flex92s (stark E) for the past year or so. I like them way better than the Kaplans that had been on there before (just a more defined sound but still good for arco/section stuff).

    In about a month I’ll be receiving my bass from Martin Penning, so ahead of that, I snagged a set of Spiro Weichs for the Lang. The plan is to turn it into my jazz-oriented bass, but I’m hoping the 2-year old Spiro Weichs are still bowable and not crazy bright.
  9. DaveAceofBass

    DaveAceofBass Supporting Member

    Feb 20, 2004
    Charlotte, NC
    I think Belcanto D and G over Spirometer E and A would be an interesting mix!
    carl h. likes this.
  10. CaseyVancouver


    Nov 4, 2012
    Sam Dingle likes this.
  11. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    New Orleans
    Spirocore mediums if you are doing acoustic pizz
  12. logdrum

    logdrum Formerly known as noelpaz Supporting Member

    It depends what arco sounds you are going for. If you are in the Mark Dresser, Joelle Leandre camp, you want Spiros
  13. Scott Lynch

    Scott Lynch Supporting Member

    Nov 27, 2002
    Delaware, USA
    Between trying each set on its own as well as various combinations of Spiro lower strings and Belcanto upper strings, there are a lot of options possible that could work. You owe it to yourself to try as many as you need to find your sound.

    Based on the OPs info, I’d start with a full set of spiros, then, If needed, swap out for belcantos one string at a time, starting with the G on down until a desirable blend is reached.
  14. turf3


    Sep 26, 2011
    I have a fairly heavily built carved bass of moderate quality with Bel Canto strings. I use it for bluegrass and jazz and personally I like the sound, but the low E needs more projection. I am contemplating a Spirocore Weich E.
    It's not a bright sound, but personally I don't really want a bright sound.
  15. If you want a Spiro Weich with Belcantos, get the 3/4 Spiro Weich. That should fit better tensionwise.
  16. chilensko


    Sep 27, 2010
    Belcantos with E spiro weich sounds great, very versatile for pizz and arco.

Share This Page