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Which strings for acoustic?

Discussion in 'Strings [BG]' started by OHBandit, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. OHBandit


    May 7, 2008
    Maineville, OH
    Just picked up an Olympic acoustic bass. It needs a set of strings and I'd like to know what you guys recommend. I want somethingbthat projects well as I will be mostly playing not plugged in.
  2. bskts247

    bskts247 Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    New Orleans
    DR makes a good acoustic set.
  3. D'Addario or some other Phosphor/Bronze strings project pretty good.
  4. atomicdog


    Jun 18, 2011
    Where did you get that beauty? Can I ask how much?
  5. Jon Moody

    Jon Moody Commercial User

    Sep 9, 2007
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Manager of Digital Brand Development and Product Development at GHS Strings
    For projection, phosphor bronze strings are the loudest choice for an acoustic/electric.

    However, if you've never played an acoustic/electric unplugged and plan on playing it with people, at some point you will need amplification; it's a fact. My Warwick Alien is probably one of the loudest mass-produced acoustics out there (rivaling the old Tacoma Thunderchief) and I still plug it in when playing with two acoustic guitarists at a gig.
  6. Laurent

    Laurent Supporting Member

    May 21, 2008
    Napa, California
    I am currently playing a set of Earthwood from Ernie Ball and they are very nice.
    I have also played the Martin set and they are in the same ball park.
  7. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest
    You like these better than the Martin's?
  8. Gorn

    Gorn Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    If your only consideration is unplugged volume, you're out of luck. You'll need an upright, an Earthwood or a guitarron to compete with even a single ukulele.
  9. old-fashioned


    Mar 25, 2005
    My choice is GHS Black Tapewounds for a mellower tone and some upright(ish) thump.
  10. Jon Moody

    Jon Moody Commercial User

    Sep 9, 2007
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Manager of Digital Brand Development and Product Development at GHS Strings
    I wouldn't go THAT far. I've played my AEB unplugged with two acoustic guitars and it's fine for a rehearsal, probably even a small house concert. But any stage is going to need some sort of amplification.

    Disclaimer: never played with a ukulele. I'm usually the one playing said uke.
  11. OHBandit


    May 7, 2008
    Maineville, OH
    Thanks for all the comments guys. I have plenty of amplification if needed but really just looking to set arounds the camp fire and play with a couple guys. Not that big a deal. Will probably try a set of phosphorus bronze. I have a set of lebella tape wounds at the house I may try. Love the sound of those but I know they are probably too mellow for what my intent is.
  12. I'm gonna bump this thread, because - -

    My brother the guitar nut, bless him, is having his luthier build me an ABG. We went to the shop today to consult with him on things like woods, scale, tuning, frets, etc. We discussed what I believe will be the most probable usage scenario, which will be - out of necessity - amplified, except when I practice alone. I am looking for a mellow, acoustic, but not too urb type sound.

    Since this thread is a bit dated, and given the evolution of string technology, I'd like to know what folks are using now. I'm thinking I'd like to steer away from (uncoated) steel strings, but if consensus goes otherwise, I can change. Suggestions? TIA
  13. Jon Moody

    Jon Moody Commercial User

    Sep 9, 2007
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Manager of Digital Brand Development and Product Development at GHS Strings
    I think you're thinking of a different "dated" thread; this one is a couple days old.

    I would highly recommend Pressurewounds for the AEB. I've been using them on mine, and they provide a solid mellow tone with a little bit of bite. I find they bring out the natural character of the instrument more than the other sets I've used on it.
  14. vince a

    vince a

    Jun 13, 2006
    Modesto, CA
    I've tried nearly a dozen sets of strings on my AEB five string . . . and I'm probably the only one who can actually hear it. It projects all of a foot or so . . .

    I now use a battery-powered Roland Bass Cube, even at campfires, and BTW, I use D'Addario Chromes and pick with my AEB . . . sounds almost urightish . . .
  15. Yeah, the date thing. I'm still on Cloud 9 cause the ABG is finally in the luthier's queue. This was a 60th birthday present. That passed a year and a half ago. LOL

    Thanks for the suggestions so far presented. Keep 'em coming! I'll check them all out.
  16. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    I'm a flats fan, so when I replaced the strings on my Applause AE-40 I used Chromes. I'd rather have a flat string on the bass, since it requires amplification to be anything but a practice instrument in any case. And the Applause AE-40 is one of the louder ABGs, since it's a deep-bowl Ovation with a different headstock.

    NOTE: don't go to heavy gauge strings. The bridge holes in the acoustic-electric basses sometimes will not pass large gauge strings.

    I think it still had the original phosphors in this pic...

  17. I have Chromes on my pbass, love 'em, but I'm concerned about tension on a handmade, one-off acoustic. I'd like flat or nylon-wound strings not only for the sound but also to mitigate wear on the frets and fingerboard (want my cake and eat it, too). Is that asking too much? We are considering a 34" string length, if that helps.
  18. ingo62


    Mar 15, 2005
    Emden, Germany
    I like Thomastik "Jazz Flats" on my fretless acoustic. They have a nice "growl" and are low Tension strings.
  19. Laurent

    Laurent Supporting Member

    May 21, 2008
    Napa, California
    Yes I do so far. The differences are not earth shattering that being said.
  20. spthomas


    Mar 25, 2014
    I'm new to acoustic bass, just acquired an Applause by Ovation. I'm not familiar with string gauge as applies to acoustic bass. Any recommendations as to mediums, lights, etc.?