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Suggested Flats for My 65 P

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Gecko 5, Jan 31, 2014.

  1. I recently had my 65 P bass restored.
    Can anyone please recommend a flatwound string?

    I tried a set of DR Legends (45-105)
    I did not really like them. They are the first flats I ever bought.
    So I don't have much experience with flats.

    Does anyone make a bright sounding flat?

    Its hard to explain....When I had the DR's..... Its like I could not hear the notes clearly. Does that make sense?

    I've never looked in to string tension.
    Is this something I should consider on a 48 year old bass?
  2. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    Check out TI flats. They're expensive, but I hear good things.
  3. john m

    john m Supporting Member

    Jan 15, 2006
    I use them, But they are NOT bright.

    Get some chromes for maximum brightness.

    I've got some used Rotosound flats if you want to try them without spending a lot of $$$. They're somewhere in between but VERY stiff. PM me.

    If you can't find flats that are bright enough for you, try a ground string--1/4 round, 1/2 round.
  4. I prefer TI Jazz flats on my fretless P Bass. I have tried GHS precision flats and chromes, and I do like both of those strings on it, but I always go back to the TIs.
  5. shawshank72


    Mar 22, 2009
    If you want a brighter flat
    Order a set to your taste in gauge.
    May i suggest www.bassstringsonline.com
    He was offering free shipping last time i ordered.
  6. Luckydog


    Dec 25, 1999
    I wouldnt put roto flats on an old fender neck, regardless of how stable it is. They are very very tense strings. And they do not maintain brightness anyway so wouldnt imo work well for you. Chromes are bright, but in the upper mid area, which to me doesnt bring out the best in a pbass. Labellas have a bright aspect to their tone, but are also extremely thumpy and deep. You might like that. TI flats are remarkable strings...loose tension, very easy on the fretting hand, and very mid-tone centric. But not a wide tone, meaning not a lot of deep lows nor highs. But they respond extremely well to eq at the amp, so you can add lows as needed. You absolutely will be heard in a mix with these strings, but they also have the ability to provide a solid foundation, when eq'd properly. And they have a richness of tone that I haven't found in any other flats. Well worth the high price imo, and will last decades unless you keep pulling them off and reinstalling them.
  7. Gorn

    Gorn Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    The correct answer is Labellas.
  8. StevieMac

    StevieMac Supporting Member

    Mar 17, 2005
    Vancouver, BC
  9. aproud1

    aproud1 Don't surround yourself with yourself. Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2007
    Cincy, OH
    There is something special about Pyramid Flats on a P bass. Though they are higher tension than some. I'd say medium high. The TI's while great strings, don't sound right to me on a P Bass. Personal opinion.

    If it were my bass I'd install Labella white nylon tapes. They are veyr, very nice strings. I have heard great things about Labella flats but the white nylons seem perfect on my 5 string P and my fretless. Perfect tension, even sound, don't look weird.

    Wish I had a 65 P.... :bassist:
  10. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    If you want bright, flats are the wrong choice. Round and warm is the what they will get with flats.

    One thing to keep in mind with P-basses, especially if listen to them solo, without other instruments, you perceive might the sound as dark, inarticulate, middy, or even a little muddy.

    Put that in context of a track or rhythm section and it sounds perfect. This has been my experience.

    Record the session, practice, gig, you will be shocked at the difference between what you think it sounds like and what it actually sounds like. What seems too dark or or hard to hear, is absolutely perfect in context.

    Anyone else find this?
  11. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

  12. Mikeee71

    Mikeee71 Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    GHS flats on a P bass are the Beez Neez!
  13. Thanks for all the input.

    I was at a gear GTG this past Sunday. A guy had 3 G&L basses all with LaBella tape wounds. He buys them from Carvin.
    I was amazed at hot bright they are.

    Second part of my question.....
    I have ALWAYS used .45-.105 on a 4 string.
    Should I look at changing this for flats, or does guage not matter?
    The guy with the G&L's was saying you generally go heavier with flats.
  14. R&B

    R&B Both kinds of music: Rhythm AND Blues! Supporting Member

    +1 on LaBellas for '60s thump. The light gauge 760FL strings still sound huge; tension is a little lower than the thicker gauges. I find them a lot easier on my fingers than the medium gauge 760FS and a little less woody/dead.

    Also totally dig Sadowsky flats and TI JF344. GHS Precision Flats are decent and inexpensive, but they get a little crust of corrosion that sticks to my fingers. TI flats do that at first, then it goes away. LaBellas and Sadowskys are as smooth as anything. Really a pleasure to play.

    Never did dig Chromes at all.

    +1 on Jason, a great TBer and super-fast shipper. He gives free advice too. :) Apply for TB VIP status to see the discount pricing. :bassist:
  15. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    Phillipsburg, NJ
    It's all so subjective. I tried many Flats and ended up loving Steve Harris Rotosounds to death. Perfect for me in every way. My fingers are very callused after 30 years so I am immune to any roughness complaints. Even Rotosound Rounds feel pretty great to me(Just don't want to eat my frets up with them) The tension of Steve Harris Flats is perfect for me because My Attack is very heavy. TI's were way too floppy for me but others love them. Lots to consider, Attack, tone, feel etc.. But my vote is Steve Harris Flats 100%
  16. I'm leaning towards the LaBellas.

    What is the difference sound-wise to tapewounds?
  17. R&B

    R&B Both kinds of music: Rhythm AND Blues! Supporting Member

    Limited experience with tapewounds here. Tried them early on, loved the slick feel, didn't dig the absence of interesting overtones and lack of sustain. To my ears, a lot of the Precision magic happens with the layered harmonics, slapback echoes, "growl," whatever you like to call it. I wasn't hearing that with tapes.

    YMMV of course!
  18. chuck norriss

    chuck norriss Banned

    Jan 20, 2011
    Pics or this is for nothing
  19. bass_case

    bass_case Maintain low tones. Supporting Member

    Oct 23, 2013
    Miami, FL
    Definitely an ear of the beholder thing. I have a 65 c-neck that was on my '71 p/j for a long time and used rounds (and the frets show it.)

    I have been using DA chromes on my SC Tele and love them. They are bright in a nice way, and I like the feel.

    I have La Bella flats on my 71 fretless. Going from chromes or rounds they might seem dull at first, but they bring out the thump and on the fretless have a nice mwaah factor. They seem pretty low tension to me, but that's just my impression.

    I used black tapes on my fretless for years and got a good sound but it was a long time ago and can't remember specifics.
  20. Gorn

    Gorn Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Which tapewounds? Labellas? They'd be a tad brighter, just a tad.

    I stink at describing tonal nuances, but I can't recommend the labella flats enough. Give them a shot, and if you're not crazy about them, sell them in the classifieds and you'll get about half your money back.