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Discussion in 'Strings [DB]' started by oliebrice, Apr 26, 2003.

  1. oliebrice


    Apr 7, 2003
    Hastings, UK
    what does weichs mean? heavy? light?
    I've been reading up threads wanting to get some decent strings to replace my crap v. soft ones that came with my bass, and it seems that Tomastik Spirocores are probably the best bet. But i keep seeing references to weichs and another word which I guessed meant medium but have since forgotten
  2. Weichs have lower tension than Spirocore orchestra strings (the most misnamed string ever). Aggregate tension of a set of weichs is 252.3 lbs.; spirocores 278.8 lbs.

    Some feel there's a loss of balls with weichs.
  3. "Weich" is the german word for soft (or light).
    "Stark" is the german word for strong (or heavy).
    Medium would be "mittel" in german.
  4. Nick Ara

    Nick Ara

    Jul 22, 2002
    Long Island, NY

    My TI's came with neither of these designations. Instead, it simply says: Thomastik-Infeld WIEN on the envelope. I might have missed it, but I don't think I saw WIEN listed on the TI web site. The strings have red silk on the top and bottom, btw. Any ideas?

    Much thanks!
  5. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    Well I'm not Francois, but: Both ends red is medium gauge. FYI, www.quinnviolins.com has a string ID search function.

    Edit: FYI 2: Wien is the Austrian name for Vienna.
  6. Red at both ends indicates Spirocore Orchestra, medium. Red at the tailpiece and purple at the pegbox end indicates Weich. Red tail and yellow peg indicate Solo.
  7. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    ...and not to leave any out: Pegbox end green - ball end red is orchestra stark.
  8. oliebrice


    Apr 7, 2003
    Hastings, UK
    any suggestions on how to choose which ones to go for? I'm a new DBplayer, play mostly free jazz, favourite bass players tones would include the likes of Charlie Haden. Mingus, gary peacock, William Parker...
    I know different strongs will work with different bassists and diferent basses, but can't afford to experiment really, so advice would be appreciated...
  9. There is no escape to be had from spending money experimenting on finding the string that sounds best on your bass when played by you.
    I can only tell you that the pizz string found by most players to have the biggest balls is Spirocore orchestra, i.e., it is the string I see most frequently. That doesn't mean that some fabulous players don't use other strings.
    If you're looking for advice on what string to buy, don't ask here. Most of us know better than to claim to know what you'll like.
  10. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    What have you got on now, and how would you like the sound or feel to be different? Do you play any arco?

    The best is of course to try many different strings, but that will be expensive. Spirocores is a pretty safe bet for pizz IME, but they aren't the easiest to bow...

    Scroll through the Strings section, there are plenty opinions on and experiences with the different string types. You'll get an overview, but few conclusions... :D
  11. mje


    Aug 1, 2002
    Southeast Michigan
    We probably covered this before, but how do the Spiro orchestra/red end strings compare to the weichs in bowability? Less scratchy? The same? I'm getting more into arco playing and I'd love to keep the full sound and sustain of the weichs but with a richer arco sound.
  12. oliebrice


    Apr 7, 2003
    Hastings, UK
    at the moment I've got cheap chinese strings that came with the bass. I play mostly pizz but am soon going to start lessons in arco playing. The strings I've got now feel too soft to me, I'd like to feel like I could "dig in" more. I'd also like a less trebly tone.
    if weich are light, and orchestra medium, then are solo heavy?
  13. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    No. Solo strings are made to be tuned higher...when you tune them to standard pitch, they are even softer than the Weichs. Spirocore's heaviest line is called "Stark", which may well be the heaviest (highest tension) strings made. I'm using these at the moment, and I love them. They're a real booger on the fingers, though, and I would never recommend them to a beginner, especially one with a bass that isn't set up exactly the way you want. For more info, see the thread on "Spirocore Stark" further down in this forum.
  14. erik II

    erik II

    Jul 11, 2000
    Oslo, Norway
    Spiro mediums could be a good place to start. But since you want a less trebly sound, and you're gonna start bowing, maybe Pirastro Obligato is an alternative. They are not as powerful as the Spiros (IME), but they have a nice warm pizz sound, they bow OK, and they're not so expensive. Many here like them - do a search and read the comments.
  15. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    Experimentation is really the only way to go. After playing my new ES-9 regularly for a little more than a year, I have ended up using spirocore weichs for the A,D and G and I use a mittel for the E.

    For my bass, it balances the pull feel of the four stings better and also balances the volume of the bass better.

    I play all pizz. I play BG, folk and country much more than blues/jazz but I just like the fact that spiros have tone. Coming from the EBG side, it better suits my ears.
  16. CJY


    Apr 30, 2001
    Hi guys,
    I was wondering:what is the correct way to pronounce 'weich'?For a long time I believed that it sounded like 'vike',but a German dictionary phrasebook that I have says it is 'vysh'.Which is correct?Any German speakers here to clarify this?Thanks.
  17. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer

    May 24, 2001
    Bettendorf, IA USA
    My German comes from 5 semesters in college. And that was many moons ago, but I'll give it a shot:

    It depends on the dialect. Northern Germany tends to favor the hard "ch." "Vike" would be how you would probably have to write an American-understood pronunciation. The "ch" is a glutteral, hock-a-loog kind of thing. Kind of "VYKKKHHH."

    Southern/Austrian dialects tend to be the softer "vysh" kind of sound.
  18. markr


    Mar 1, 2002
    oliebrice, i'm pretty new to double bass (1 yr)and after looking at all the posts in 'strings' here i tried the Pirastro Obligatos & the Spiro Weichs. They both seem like safe bets for beginners. For me, the Obligatos had a woodier, pretty bowed sound, but the spiros have not been bad at all to bow (i hear Mittel or Orch. gauge is scratchier).
    The pizz sound of the obligatos for me were gut-like, an older sound but pretty. The spiros are trebly but its the sound i prefer, with the growl & sustain. They get less trebly over time. For me its easier to hear with the pianist I play with-- cuts through with more definite pitch & very clear-- so its helpful to my intonation. They are easy on the fingers as are obligatos. Its subject; i like the Spiros.
    'Course, you'll want to experiment on your own to find out what you prefer with your bass. -Mark
  19. You should see if your teacher keeps old strings around so maybe you could try them for a while. That's what my teacher does and that has been a big help to me. IMHO, the Spiro weichs are a good bet they get a good pizz and arco tone (after some workwith the bow). Correlis seem to work for alot of pizz arco players too, I tried them and they were easy on the hands and pretty versitile, but I use Spiro weichs and love them. Like everyone else though, the best I can tell you is what I perfer your tastes may differ.

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