Thomastik Flats, Inconsistent?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by Elkaykue, Dec 29, 2014.

  1. Elkaykue


    Oct 2, 2014
    So I recently purchased some JF344's as a change to my usual light gauge la bellas. However I noticed that the E and A strings are significantly brighter than the D and G strings. I know there is a break in period for flats, but all things considered they are still significantly brighter.

    Is this common for TI's or have I purchased a dodgy set? The E and A sound almost like half rounds to me.

    Lastly has anyone had any experience with TI customer service? Im thinking I may ask them to send a new E and A string as they are 100 dollars a set here in Australia :thumbsdown: and they may be in the holiday spirit:thumbsup:
  2. Elkaykue


    Oct 2, 2014
    upload_2014-12-29_16-17-32.png heres a Photo if that helps. Dont be afraid to tell me this is normal and I'm stupid, thats good news. Something just doesnt seem right.
  3. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    Normal, just continue to play these strings and they will get better for the next ten years.
    Elkaykue likes this.
  4. Elkaykue


    Oct 2, 2014
    Thanks for the response. I'm new to TI's and they definitely sound A LOT brighter new than La Bellas. Comforting to know they will even out.
  5. Lobster11

    Lobster11 Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2006
    Williamsburg, VA
    Yeah, I think the thicker strings just take longer to break in. The E and A will mellow with time and come to sound more consistent with the D and G.

    Of course, these strings will always be somewhat "brighter" (tho I think of them as "mid-rangey") than LaBellas or most other flats, but that's a feature, not a bug. But I presume you knew that before you spent 100 bucks on them!
    Elkaykue likes this.
  6. Elkaykue


    Oct 2, 2014
    Nope :laugh: But I was surprised to see them at my local store and figured they had a good reputation so I would give them a shot.
  7. Klonk


    Apr 28, 2011
    It's normal, had that happening to me with my last set of JF344s. Solved itself after 5-6 weeks of playing, but I too wondered if it was an issue. Luckily it wasn't, and I still gig those strings now two years later.
  8. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    they are brighter than some strings.
    they take a while to break in and get better.
    they are fine. they are the best flats out there according to a ton of players including me.
  9. dagrev

    dagrev Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2006
    As has been said--hang on they will mellow. I don't recall the E and A being brighter when new--but I'm bought most all of my sets used from people who didn't find them to be there thing. Good for me! I've had sets for years and never had to take a set off since I started using them. And they sound unbelievable on a Pbass--like the '58 in the avitar.

    That being said, wait it out a couple of months and see how it goes. You can always sell them here and someone who likes lower prices will snap them up. But I'd contact customer support to let them know you are concerned. As I've said I've never noticed it with new/newer sets. If after a few months and it's still noticuueable you may have an odd set. I had two sets of LaBella's where the D and G were dead and rough. Elderly sent me two new sets that were great. All companies can have bad runs.
  10. Pier_


    Dec 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    they are perfect that way.

    the "less smooth" E and A strings are made this way to avoid the extreme "muted thump" of most common flatwound sets.

    being this way, even after years of use the low strings still vibrate more and sound "thumpy but not muted", with a nice sustain.
  11. ZorgRift

    ZorgRift Guest

    Jul 4, 2014
    hamilton, ontario
    this is the thing that drove me insane about these. the E string always, always sounded practically roundwound.

    F-minus-minus, would never buy again, the Talkbass hivemind done got me on this one.
  12. wmhill

    wmhill Inactive

    Aug 20, 2012
    upstate NY
    MTD basses endorsed artist Bartolini pickups emerging artist TECAMP bass players gear endorsed
    I got a set of their round wounds ( SUPERALLOY in344) as a Christmas gift....anxious to see how they perform, as with everything on here, the reviews are at polar extremes.
    lixisoft likes this.
  13. rubato


    Feb 16, 2004
    Portland, Oregon
    My experience has always been that they sound good new, sound great after 6 weeks, and last for bloody ever. Whazzup with the nut on that bass? It looks like maybe someone had it strung B E A D... Perhaps the D & G are just lost in there. Also kind of looks like there might be a crack emanating both ways from the A string slot. Hard to tell, it might just be funk. As we all know, funk = good, Crack = bad.
  14. Elkaykue


    Oct 2, 2014
    This is what I'm experiencing. I'm no chump on bass and have been playing flats longer than a lot of guys have been alive, but even knowing theres a "break in" period, unless said "break in" is so extreme the string just randomly dies I cannot fathom them being even. Last night I had a big band gig and I'm not even exaggerating when I say I can get a Marcus Milleresque tone on the E and A.

    Oh well it's not the end of the world, different strokes for different folks. I'm going to keep them on one more month and if still they're not right, I'm reverting to my trusting la bellas.

    On a positive note, its New Bass Day and it's a beaut, I will post a thread later :hyper:
  15. Elkaykue


    Oct 2, 2014
    No crack! Just a bad combination of being proactive enough to lube the nut with graphite before stringing it, then too lazy to wipe away the excess.
  16. Pier_


    Dec 22, 2013
    Roma, Italia
    they have a break-in period that is longer than other flats, but when you reach that point, they sound like flatwounds, not like rounds, in any way.

    for example:

    this one is a friend of mine:

    this is my set of TI, two and a half years at the time of recording, on a Precision bass:


    finger with foam mute:


    pick foam muted:

    they are played first near the neck, then on the pickup, and then near the bridge.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
    68Goldfish and OzzyGreg like this.
  17. dagrev

    dagrev Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2006