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Thomastik vs D'Addario Flats

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by bgavin, Feb 18, 2002.

  1. Anybody have any comparison between TI Jazz Flats and D'Addario Chrome Flats?
  2. Matthew T.

    Matthew T.

    Feb 17, 2002
    Springdale, AR
    The TI flats seem to be quite a bit more versatile than the D'Adarrios, giving much the same sound as a semi-bright set of roundwounds. They can handle more traditional flatwound tones as well, however. Having said that, there is certainly nothing wrong with the D'Adarrios. The Chromes have a more traditional flatwound tone and certainly give you wider variety of guages to choose from, i.e., more than one. Check out my post on the "Thermastik" thread for more of my humble opinion.
  3. DanGouge


    May 25, 2000
    Having used both I must say that TI Flats are the way to go. As Matthew said, there's nothing wrong with chromes, they were certainly cheaper. For absolute tonal preference though Thoms are hands down my favourite flats
  4. I'm thinking about stringing my newly acquired MIM P to BEAD. Running the numbers through the GHS tension calculator and looking at the (few) published numbers, I came up with the following:

    166 pounds - Fender 7250ML factory stock strings (estimated)
    165 pounds - TI PowerBass rounds as BEAD
    138 pounds - Jazz Flats as BEAD
    170 pounds - D'Addario EBC81 flat chromes as BEAD

    I'm currently running the Jazz Flats on my RB5 and the tension (or lack of) is just fine with my type of playing. Including the B string. I figure moving BEAD over to the MIM P would be the same feel, since they are the same scale. The nut will be an issue, but I will replace it, if I decide to stay with BEAD on the P.

    I kinda figured the Thoms have the edge in tone, especially for thump on a P bass. I was asking about the D'Addario chromes because I wouldn't have any truss rod issues. But I didn't have any with the RB5 either.
  5. DaveB


    Mar 29, 2000
    Toronto Ontario
    I've moved away from flats but I do have lots of experience with both the Thoms and D'Addarios. Tonally, I like the Thoms better although the Chromes have a nice traditional, thumpy flat tone.
    I don't like the "floppiness" of the Thoms though. I find them way too flexible for my playing style.Even when I lighten up the touch they're still too floppy. I always favored the Chromes for that reason alone.
  6. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    Yeah, I agree with Dave. The TI's sound good but they're floppy as can be. The D'Addario's have a much tighter feel. My personal fave flat is the LaBella Jamerson set, BTW. Tone for days and a good tight feel. They're heavy, tho.
  7. I would think so, as the D'Addario have a significantly higher tension.

    My first excursion into the world of flats is with the TI Jazz Flats. I notice they are lower tension, but this doesn't seem to impact me at all. Flats sure are nice on the fingers, though!

    I was thinking the low tension B was going to pose a problem for slop, but then I noticed the tension on the B strings are all within a pound of each other in 34" scale.
  8. I use TI flats and love them. Just move your playing a little closer to the bridge when you want more tension and a brighter tone. Or play lighter and up the volume for darker faster close to the neck.
  9. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    I greatly prefer TIs over Chromes. I found Chromes to be far too bright and clanky sounding, and the low B was on the muddy side.

    TIs have a really pleasant and even sound to them, and they seem to really stand out in a mix. They are also very evenly balanced from string to string. However, they are a little on the floppy side.
  10. Metal Mitch

    Metal Mitch

    Jul 14, 2003
    Zombie thread alert!

  11. Chrisk-K


    Jan 20, 2010
    Maryland, USA
    The only flats that I like are the Chromes. I've used the TIs before.
  12. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    Geez, no kidding. I didn't even notice!
  13. REAPER52


    Aug 17, 2008
    Whats a zombie thread ?
  14. mccartneyman


    Dec 22, 2006
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Managing Editor, Bass Guitars Editor, MusicGearReview.com
    Zombie = Back from the Dead. Very old thread. Anyway, I just put Sadowsky flats on my Lakland 55-94 and I think I'm going to like them ebetter than TIs or Chromes. Tension seems someweher between TIs and Chromes, and the sound is very pleasnat so far -- more top end than the Chromes .
  15. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    I really, really like the Sadowsky flats. The are super aggressive for flats, and they have a much nicer top end than Chromes- they never sound 'harsh'.

    The only thing that doesn't thrill me about them is the low B (although I've only tried the .125 gauge)
  16. Regarding the Sadowsky flats, how long does the top end stick around for? I like labella top end at first but it tends to go away after awhile, not a bad thing, just the nature of it. Sad's are made by labella, I think.

    BTW, I like both chromes and TI's, and I'm in a bit of a debate right now too for which strings to keep on my super P/J. The chromes are mellowing out nicely after about a month, and the TI's are 3y/o. The chromes where too much on the d and g initially, but I'm giving them time to settle and they're getting much more even across. From what I've experience both have about the most complex mids of all the flats I've tried, but both do it very differently. Ti's seem to be more clear and broad and perhaps maybe a more upright or classic sound, very nice, whereas the chromes seem to be darker like more low mids than TI's and give up a good deep growl and sustain, now that they're breaking in I wonder how long the sustain will last. I would describe the chromes as having a bit more of the Thump, however the TI's have a nice Thuck if that makes any sense. Both are smooth, and both do a flat sound but each do it very different. Chromes are maybe what i would describe as warmer, TI's clear and broad and defined.
  17. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    The Sads are almost rounds in a flats disguise.... almost. They are made by LaBella, but they sound nothing like Deep Talkin' Flats.
  18. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    Zombie thread? Geez... TB is all about that. FWIW I love both flats but stick to chromes since they let me play more aggressive.
  19. JimmyM


    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    chromes for me, please. ti's = blecch! they're too loose, they feel creepy like they're rolling under my fingers, and they never go dead. if i wanted zingy flats, i wouldn't buy flats.
  20. ljazz


    Dec 10, 2002
    Cookeville, TN
    I love them both, but lately, TI's have been causing me a lot of pain in my plucking hand/arm. I'm doing so much playing, that I'm going back and forth between different basses with different strings........ all of which are higher tension than the TI's....... so when I go back to my TIJF strung bass, I end up hurting. I can't explain it, except that I think I tend to do a lot more to keep the lower tension under control, and it ends up causing the soreness.

    I agree with Scutterflux about the mid complexity of the TI's and Chromes..... nothing else comes close. When each brand is properly broken in, you're left with nice singing mids...... just a bit more thump on the bottom with the Chromes, where the TI's seem to "blossom" a bit more on the bottom. But the mids!!!..... 75% of the fingerstyle stuff I do now is with the chromes or TIJF's now..... for me, I'm only needing rounds for slap, or something that has to have some zing on top.

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