Strings similar to TI flats, that detune well?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by EveryGenre, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. EveryGenre


    Jun 30, 2020
    I've loved TI jazz flats (JF344) for a long time. I once tried some others (I think GHS?) and was quite disappointed. Where I live, TI isn't more expensive than other strings, so no downsides!

    Except now, I want to play with a band that tunes a whole step down, DGCF. My TI flats sound clunky and dead detuned. I imagine this is because they are already fairly low-tension strings to begin with.

    So: what strings might approach the TI flats (EADG) experience, but in DGCF? My bass is 34.25" scale
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2020
  2. S.F.Sorrow


    Dec 6, 2014
    I'm sorry to disappoint you but no other strings are even remotely close to the TI Jazz Flats.

    The ONE thing I don't like about TI is that they only offer ONE gauge for each set/scale. But I guess those gauges are carefully selected and one of the reasons TI strings sound so great.

    And yeah, the JFs are definitely not suitable for tuning down. They are pretty low tension to begin with.

    They do have a 5-string set but I'm pretty sure they can't be tuned up that far without breaking. I suspect they could have felt nice when tuned higher though, being such low tension strings to begin with.

    The only solution I can see would be to go 5-string or tune BEAD on a 4-string but I'm guessing that's not an ideal solution here with the rest of the band in DGCF.
    tindrum likes this.
  3. Vinny_G


    Dec 1, 2011
    Welcome to TalkFlats ;)
    tindrum and corndog like this.
  4. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    O love my TI's but my second fav are the Labella Low Tension flats. A little more tension than the TI's. Great balance and tone. Just my 2 cents.
  5. EveryGenre


    Jun 30, 2020
    Have you tried detuning them?
  6. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    I haven't but with the tension a little higher. I think that they would be fine. You talking like Eb or D.
  7. Something to keep in mind...
    The La Bella LTFs are slightly stiffer-feeling than the TIJFs, but in terms of the actual tension (as in pulling weight), the LBs are lighter than the TIs. So, I'm not sure how that would work with down-tuning.
  8. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    I would never have thought that by the feel and playing both. TI's on my #1 and LTF's on my #2.
  9. This is just one example of how "tension" (= pulling weight) and "stiffness/flexibility" (= playing feel) are two different things.
    corndog likes this.
  10. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    Understand that thanks for the info.
  11. @EveryGenre, here's my suggestion...

    If you can somehow manage to find a set of Sadowsky Blue Label Flats 45-105 anywhere, which might not be easy, you might want to try them as they would have a midrange character that's closer to the TIJFs than the La Bella LTFs.
  12. Or, for a more readily available alternative, you can try the Dunlop Flats, which come in both 45-105 and 50-110.
    tindrum likes this.
  13. Coolhandjjl


    Oct 13, 2010
    LaBella DTB 760FS detuned a full step play and sound nice!
  14. HaphAsSard


    Dec 1, 2013
    1) Check this out:
    Rotosound SM77 as TI Flats alternative
    Rotosound Jazz Bass 77 flatwounds are at the opposite end of the tension+stiffness spectrum relative to Thomastik-Infeld Jazz Flats, so you might be content with the 40-100 set (SM77) at DGCF; alternatively, you might try their next gauges up (RS77LD = 45/65/85/105; the heaviest sets are the RS77LE and the SH77) but, as implied by @e-flat in his thread, those may not sound the same (which is to be expected, to a point) and (more to the point) not just as Thomastik-y;

    2) TB admin @Chris Fitzgerald has had success in installing the BEAD strings from the T-I JF345 set on his short-scale Rob Allen Mouse 30 and tuning them up a fourth, to standard 4-string EADG:
    Low B flat wound options to tune up to E
    You could do the near-exact equivalent, i.e. put those strings on your 34-1/4" and uptune them to DGCF (you'd get sliiightly more tension than he got, namely: a little over 1.5 extra pounds per string). Be done it can, as per Chris's experience; that the result sound and play to your liking remains to be seen.
    EveryGenre, e-flat and tindrum like this.
  15. EveryGenre


    Jun 30, 2020
    Thanks, that's much more helpful than TI's answer to the same question:

    "Thank you for your interest in our products. Regrettably we only have this set in standard tuning and we do not recommend using other tunings."
    HaphAsSard likes this.
  16. jeff62

    jeff62 Supporting Member

    Oct 24, 2005
    Central FL
    Any stiffer string that you buy, once down tuned, will have a similar floppy feel to your TI's in standard tuning. Buy a set for the sound you are seeking and then just go for it.