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TI flats- is this normal?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by krfoss, Dec 11, 2018.

  1. krfoss

    krfoss Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    I just got a set of slightly used ti flats off the classifieds here and threw then on my p bass. They replaced a not overly old set of Dr pure blues. I was expecting a Sonic orgasm with the TI's, except I found floppy (now I know what people are talking about, but not a problem) strings with an absence of a nice smooth nottom end. Since reading even more I've come to learn the TI's are mid heavy, but didn't realize it was at the sacrifice of sexy smooth lows.

    Those with experience, should I switch back to my pure blues? Is there something I'm missing? I'm looking for a nice smooth bass tone that makes the subs at my church shake tooth fillings.
    Linnin likes this.
  2. byacey


    May 16, 2008
    Alberta, Canada
    You probably don't realize it yet, but the mids are where all your bass tone and distinction resides. 80 Hz to 1KHz is where all the important bass sound happens.
    Give the TIs a chance and listen carefully.
  3. Vinnie Boombatz

    Vinnie Boombatz Banned

    May 26, 2010
    Only you can decide if you should switch back. What you like, others may not, and vice versa. That's why there's more than one string set on the market. Use your ears and decide for yourself.

    If you want to shake tooth fillings though, TI's wouldn't be my first choice, but as I stated above, there might be someone else who comes along and thinks the exact opposite.

    TI's IMO, are great for someone who wants a lot of definition and articulation in a flat, but I do feel like they sacrifice a bit of "oomph" and balls, for a lack of a better description. I like GHS Precision Flats, but those who like TI's tend to describe what I like as muddy and thuddy, so again, it's all about what YOU like.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
    StyleOverShow likes this.
  4. shoulderpet


    Sep 24, 2015
    Give them time to break in, if they are only slightly used they may need a few weeks to break in fully, TI's are not as bottom heavy as some flats but I have never found them to be lacking lows imo
    Garret Graves likes this.
  5. I don't consider that they lack lows, though you may need to EQ differently due to their midrange character. What I have noticed though, is that it took me a little while to get used to their lower tension, and initially it was easy to overplay them giving a barky and aggressive tone, and I wonder if that's what you're hearing. I found I adjusted my touch fairly naturally over a few weeks, but YMMV.
    BassChuck and _godspeed_ like this.
  6. 2saddleslab

    2saddleslab Supporting Member

    May 30, 2003
    As an avid TI flat user I’ve known the mids are robust. However, I never felt the bottom end lacking in any way, always a solid foundation.
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
    Yahboy likes this.
  7. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    Try turning up your amp and playing with a lighter touch. Maybe try plucking/picking a bit closer to the bridge than you used to. Because the TI's are so floppy, they really benefit from a gentle technique. TI's have a natural low-mid "oomph" that sits great in the mix above the kick drum and below the guitars. I've played mine in metal and hard rock bands, never got any complaints about lack of bottom end.
    Yahboy likes this.
  8. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    given your goals: your amp settings will be more effective than your choice of strings. good luck! :thumbsup:
  9. shoulderpet


    Sep 24, 2015
    i actually got this tone at a rehearsal last week using Ti's
  10. Yahboy


    May 21, 2008
    My broken in Ti flat has nice definition of Low end without thuddy and boomy. The tone and tension are pretty balance from E to G.
  11. hotbass57


    Nov 27, 2011
    I get constant compliments on my tone when I play my bass strung with them. They don't thunder but they sound good.
    StyleOverShow and krfoss like this.
  12. krfoss

    krfoss Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2007
    Orange County, CA
    I'm playing them at rehearsal tomorrow, so we'll see how they go. Thanks for your feedback everyone!
  13. Linnin


    Jul 19, 2012
    Linningrad, Earth
    Yes, you've gotten everything Tomastik-Infeld Jazz Flats provide. Yes you should switch. My advice is to restring with GHS Precision Flats. Or Fender 9050s. Take your pick.
  14. bassdude51

    bassdude51 "You never even called me by my name." Supporting Member

    Nov 1, 2008
    Central Ohio
    I love TI flats and they are on all of my basses (over 20). Sonic wise, they are perfect. My open E sounds earth shaking. Might be a negative for some but not for me.............TI flats have a rolled off high end. Since I am a bass player, I don't care much for high end anyway.

    Check your pickup height adjustment.

    Ultimately, let your ears be your guide for sound. Nobody can tell you what strings to use or what sounds best. That's your department.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2018
  15. Luckydog


    Dec 25, 1999
    Dont make a bad mistake and string up with just any thuddy flat set. Its possible you are listening from your perspective right at your cab. Understand how they translate to the FOH, unless all you plan to do is play in your bedroom, which is fine too. Use wireless and get out in the FOH for a listen with those TIs in a mix, or listen to a recording playback of your band with you playing the TIs in a mix. You will see that you cannot assess them simply by standing in front of your amp. They sound completely different in the mix than they do 2 feet from your amp. They are clear, and articulate. They are huge sounding in the mix, they are very friendly to eq adjustments and you can add plenty of lows without screwing up your mids unlike lots of other flats. They are the only string set that consistently gets me positive comments on tone from people out front.
  16. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    Mar 5, 2013
    Lost Wages, Nevada
    ^^THIS^^ And, TIs are one of the very few nickel-wound flats, so some output adjustment may also be in order. And, for what it's worth - I started out in my band as the roadie/sound guy. Everyone here, who said that you sound different from the audience's perspective, is Absolutely right. And, yes, I had to convince my bandmates of that by dragging them out in front of the band, and hearing what we sounded like from out front. A real wake-up moment for them, too.;)
  17. bassbully

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

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    I tried TIs some years ago after reading all the hype here. They were something like 45.00 a set then quite a chunk I felt for the “magic strings” but I bit.
    I had the same response as you they were honky and middy no low end duds...I hated them. I liked the feel, hated the tone. I was going thru quite a few basses back then and they sounded wretched on them all. I took them off, cussed allot, and spoke out TB about how they suked and I wasted my money.

    Then one day I bought another 80’s Squier SQ P bass. My other SQ had chrome flats which I loved. I looked for some strings to put on this bass since the ones it came with we’re garbage.
    I reached for the coil of TIs in my strings box and said what the hell. Well it turned into an awesome sounding P with get punchy mids and nice woody lows. TIs were perfect on that bass but suked on most others.

    So long story short they are weird strings. I still have a love hate for TIs and will never buy them again, but for a few years that P bass with TIs was an amazing sounding bass for sure.
    mikewalker likes this.
  18. 68Goldfish

    68Goldfish Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2006
    Port Orchard WA
    I also think there’s a real difference to how a broken in set sounds as compared to a fairly new set. I played a fairly new set (couple of weeks and one gig) with the band last night and it did seem to be hard to get any real thump. New TI’s sound steely and metallic. My older set have tightened up and gotten more deep and percussive. Give them some time to settle in.
    krfoss likes this.
  19. _godspeed_

    _godspeed_ Supporting Member

    Jan 5, 2009
    Vancouver, Canada
    Try lighter touch. TIs really made me watch how I play - it's really easy to "overplay" them, meaning they don't sound the best when you're digging in.
    bassbully likes this.
  20. JGbassman

    JGbassman Supporting Member

    May 31, 2011
    How would these strings compare to chromes? I love the chromes, but like the idea of a midrange string. I dig in pretty good, so I’m not sure a floppy string would be the best for me.

    I really want to try them sometime.

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