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String reccomendations for drop C tuning.

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by BassNova, Oct 9, 2013.


  1. BassNova

    BassNova

    Oct 9, 2013
    I am trying to attempt to play a song by August Burns Red that requires drop C tuning. I know very little information about the bass as an instrument, I'm just learning how to play it and I wanted to learn a new song. Anyhow, the problem I ran into is that when I tune my strings down that low, they flop around way too much. Specifically the E string, but I have the money to replace all of them. I have an Ibanez GSR200 with the original strings and they work fine for me when tuned at standard, but are just horrendous in drop C. I use a pick to play and the genre would be metal/metalcore. My bass has a sort of poppy sound when I strum on it and if possible I would like to keep that or maybe smooth it out if necessary. String reccomendations would be much appreciated.
     
  2. BassNova

    BassNova

    Oct 9, 2013
    If I wasn't clear enough on what I said, the main thing I am looking for with a new set of strings is basically to have the same sound I have now, but with a thicker e-string so that I can tune it up to an E but be able to tune it down to a C without having to have it move around spastically.
     
  3. JellinWellen

    JellinWellen

    Oct 18, 2012
    Texas
    You could try using a thicker gauge E, like a .110 or a .115. But if you are playing metalcore I would think you would need to tune for BEAD or get a 5 string bass. I don't know much about BEAD tuning but there's plenty of info here on it.
     
  4. beobass

    beobass

    Nov 26, 2005
    CT
    DR makes a drop tuning specific string. Has a black widow spider on the package.
     
  5. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Seattle
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    The sets you call out are for dropped standard intervals (D standard, C standard) - not for drop tuned intervals. Good strings for their purpose, but not for drop tuning.

    To the OP - you weren't specific on string count. A .125 or .130 for C, and then .085 .065 .045 .035 on top would be good.

    There are other solutions . . . . ;)
     
  6. BassNova

    BassNova

    Oct 9, 2013
    I considered getting a five string because i could just tune it up, but I'm completely broke xD and I'm saving for a amp stack. I want to keep away from BEAD tuning and stay towards standard because it's just really convenient and I have only one bass at the moment. I looked up those DR drop tuning strings and they look perfect actually. I read the reviews and it seems promising enough. Thanks! I appreciate it!
     
  7. Systolic

    Systolic Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2009
    Madison,Wisconsin
    The popping sound is likely your strings hitting the pickup poles. You could try lowering your pickups a bit, but some thicker/stiffer strings should do the trick. I use Ernie Ball COBALT POWER Slinky's for my Drop C tunings.
     
  8. BassNova

    BassNova

    Oct 9, 2013
    Do you think that those strings or the DR strings would be alright if they doubled as standard strings? I want to be able to go from standard to drop c to half a step down and so on so forth.
     
  9. ixlramp

    ixlramp

    Jan 25, 2005
    UK
    By drop C i assume you mean CGCF?
    A .110 or .115 is probably optimum for switching between E and C, 4 semitones of retuning creates a big change in tension so it will be fairly tight at E and extra light tension at C. Check out www.bassstringsonline.com for single strings, they may have singles in your favourite brand.
    I recommend you build a custom set of singles carefully chosen for your range of tunings. The trick is to get all the tensions feeling right in the theoretical average tuning of D Ab Db Gb (assuming your retuning range is EADG to CGCF), this will minimise the tension deviations. If you equalise the tensions in the average tuning that will minimise the tension imbalances caused by retuning. If you can find out the stock strings brand and gauges that will help you choose gauges.
     
  10. GK Growl

    GK Growl Banned

    Dec 31, 2011
    I'm gonna go against conventional wisdom that a string has to automatically be bigger for lower tunings. Some of us enjoy the lower tension and grind that a 105 or 110 E string has in C or C#. Dug Pinnick (Kings X) and Robbie Merrill (Godsmack) both use standard gauge E strings for C tuning. It's up to the player really so experiment.
     
  11. JellinWellen

    JellinWellen

    Oct 18, 2012
    Texas
    If it were me I'd just play the octave higher, that way I would be out of those metalcore guitars frequency ranges!
    ;)
     
  12. Systolic

    Systolic Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2009
    Madison,Wisconsin
    Yes. They'll be pretty stiff, but that'll build some hand strength. I use the Power Slinky's for anything from E standard to Drop C.
     
  13. knuckle_head

    knuckle_head Commercial User

    Jul 30, 2002
    Seattle
    Owner; Knuckle Guitar Works & Circle K Strings
    They ought not be anything specifically - but they should be consistent in tension to each other. Pitch dive on resolve (more prevalent in guitar but happens on bass), technique and output from string to string benefit from this.

    If you are changing the pitches of your strings beyond a step and a half you are likely asking too much of your strings.
     
  14. ixlramp

    ixlramp

    Jan 25, 2005
    UK
    Going by their tension chart the D'Addario XL nickelplated .120 stays within 32 to 51 pounds C to E, which is safe. A .120 looks too big for an E but you have to go by the actual unit weights which vary between brands for the same stated gauge. A very much standard .065 D has 51 pounds tension. I would suggest perhaps .120 .085 .065 .045.
    Other brands .120s may be tighter, to be safe try a .115 first if you can find one. See Circle K Strings for a huge choice of singles and custom sets for any standard / drop tuning.
    Circle K .112 or .118 are okay for C to E, the .118 is pretty tight at E.
     

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