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Which gauge would you recomend?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by limon, Nov 8, 2018.

  1. limon


    Nov 8, 2018
    Hello there, I want to buy new strings but I don't know which gauge should I use so here I am, I play a four string bass and tune it on C# (I'm used to play tapping, slap, double thumb, etc) at the moment I play with 0.45 but I was wondering if a lighter gauge (40-95) would be fine for my tune, sometimes I play in standar but I'm really into C#, the thing is that it sounds kinda flat because of the tension, I have to calibrate it. Well that's it and sorry for my poor english I'm from Argentina. Thanks :)
  2. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    C# is half way between standard E and standard B, so going half way between the average gauges for those would make sense. I would start somewhere around a .115.
  3. ixlramp


    Jan 25, 2005
    If the strings are too loose for you, increase the gauges slightly to increase tension.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018
  4. limon


    Nov 8, 2018
    I play in standar sometimes, not always, I prefer playing C, so 0.40,0.45 or 0.50? I really like the light sets but dont know if its going to sound that good
  5. Wisebass


    Jan 12, 2017
    Lost in Space
    Hi limon :)

    Welcome to TB!

    Get a heavy gauge set!!!!

    No problem! Just remember the golden rule: When you tune down "fatta is betta"! :D

    A thin string will produce a low frequency only when it' s floppy!

    may the bass be with you

    limon likes this.
  6. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    That's not how bass strings work. You're saying C but talking about G string gauges. Only guitar players define their sets by the skinniest string. Bass players go from the thickest.
  7. ixlramp


    Jan 25, 2005
    Do you mean it sounds bad in C# because the tension is too low?
    .045-.100 or .045-.105?
    If you tap and slap a low tension is a good idea. If you also play in EADG then a high tension set like .050-.110 would not be good for tap and slap.
    Because of the above i recommend you don't move to higher gauges (and therefore higher tension) to avoid EADG becoming too tight.

    A set like .040-.095 has the lower strings looser than the higher strings, it's 'top-heavy'. So in C# the lowest string will be very loose. So it's better to use a more equal-tension set like .040-.100, this will tighten up the low strings without tightening the higher strings.
    Tapping works better with a more equal-tension set too.
    So whatever you choose i suggest .040-.100 or .045-.105 sets, not top-heavy .040-.095 or .045-.100 sets.
    Or even better, a 'tension-balanced' set (all strings at equal tension) like .040 .055 .075 .100 or .045 .060 .080 .105.
    Not true, a thinner *and* looser string (which is what you actually mean here) probably produces a higher proportion of low harmonics to high harmonics, or possibly the same proportion.
    However, a thinner gauge will sound different because it is thinner, it has a different tonal character, it 'sounds like a thinner string'. Some people misperceive this as having less low harmonics.

    In fact the oposite of what you wrote is true, a thin string will increasingly produce more lower harmonics as it gets looser. Tighter strings are brighter, looser strings are darker.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018
  8. limon


    Nov 8, 2018
    Exactly, it sounds bad in the first frets because of the low tune. I don't know much about this topic of gauges but mine is standard so 45-105 I guess. I've been thinking about 40-100 and set up my bass for C#.
  9. If you're looking for a gauge, I'd suggest digital calipers.

    these are the diameters I suggest:

    0.050" - 0.115"
  10. ixlramp


    Jan 25, 2005
    limon the problem is caused by retuning between C# standard (C# F# B E) and EADG, the tension changes a lot. So if the strings are right in EADG they're too loose in C#, and, if they're right in C# they're too tight in EADG. You either need 2 basses or you need to choose one tuning to use. I suggest staying in C# and increasing the gauges until the tension is right for you.
  11. rob_thebassman


    Jul 26, 2010
    Normanton, UK
    playing bass since 2005
    Regular dunlop strings do thicker gauges, and they're mid heavy
  12. bassboysam

    bassboysam Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2001
    Ottawa, Ontario
    105-45 is a bit too loose for me in C#. i prefer 110-50 or 115-55 sets.
  13. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Supporting Member

    All strings are not created equal.
    You’re going to have to experiment.
    Some trial and error will help you to find the right solution
    rob_thebassman likes this.

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