The bass guitar is an integral part of any musical group. Together with the drummer, the bassist composes the rhythm section and creates the basis of the accompaniment in the form of a "substrate" of low frequencies in the overall mix. Today, there are many opportunities for bass players to experiment with their own sound: there are thousands of varieties of effects pedals, and hundreds of types of different strings, accessories and additional accessories, dozens of brands-manufacturers and many form factors of the instruments themselves.
As with the electric guitar, one of the defining elements of the instrument's sound is the bass strings. Obviously, dirty, corroded bass strings, which are already completely lacking in sustain and high frequencies, will never allow you to reveal the sound of purebred wood, expensive pickups and the most analogous gadgets in the world. Therefore, given the average cost of a set of bass strings, we recommend that you carefully and responsibly approach the issue of choosing the optimal set. And we will be happy to help you with this!
Obviously, there is no best and most universal set of strings in the world - every musician chooses his favorite set based on many factors. Here are just a few of them:
Accordingly, we have in our arsenal millions of different combinations and variations of sound. Obviously, you don't need to go through all of them: the information below will allow you to understand which sets of bass strings are worth buying and testing, and which ones will not suit you unambiguously. And we, in turn, will help you make the final choice in favor of this or that set of strings for bass guitar!
Flat winding was considered a traditional option among musicians at all times. Such kits are suitable for those who are looking for a soft and viscous sound, as well as those who are the proud owner of a fretless bass. Technically, they are a core (usually steel) wrapped around a strip of steel or nickel. One of the advantages of a flat winding is the complete absence of extraneous noise, rustling, grinding when fingers move along the string. Obviously this isn't as noticeable on bass as it is on a heavily overdriven guitar, for example - but if you're looking for the quietest option for studio work or live performance, then you should definitely test out flat-wound string kits.
Round winding is the first in popularity among modern bassists. Today the bass guitar is no longer just an instrument that fills in the gaps in the low frequencies and mutters something in the background - modern bassists are increasingly complicating their parts, experimenting with sound and techniques in order to become an integral part of the accompaniment and an independent instrument, but not just an addition to the band. For such musicians, the readability of the sound, its power and brightness are important - this is exactly what the round winding provides. Gives a little more finger noise, but makes the bass sound more distinct and cutting through the mix.
The semicircular winding was originally developed as a versatile option between volume / depth and sharpness. In fact, everything is not so rosy, but this option certainly won its audience. Bass strings with a semicircular winding are usually recommended to be placed on instruments with "ringing" wood (ash, linden, alder and others). Usually they are more expensive than kits with flat or round winding, so we recommend experimenting with this option only if your budget allows you :)
Traditional options are pure nickel / steel or a combination of the two.
Pure nickel is the choice for lovers of really deep and spacious sound, perfect for fretless instruments, especially when combined with a flat winding. These strings are most often chosen by bassists who want a conservative sound, such as jazz and blues musicians.
Steel + nickel is the most popular option and the golden mean between pure nickel and pure steel. This is the option that 8 out of 10 modern musicians acquire, we recommend starting your search for your sound with just such bass strings.
Pure steel is a bright and cut-through tone, a great choice for slap lovers and those looking for a truly clear and readable sound.
Now the most important thing is to decide on the manufacturer and the caliber of the strings. In our catalog of bass strings you can find more than 300 different sets of strings, we offer original products from almost 30 brands, including bass strings Elixir, D'Addario, Ernie Ball, Dunlop, Rotosound and many others. Each of the brands has its own unique approach to string production, quality control, various patented technologies and works with a specific target audience. We will be happy to help you not to get confused in this variety and give you advice: just write or call us!
Regarding the caliber of the bass strings, the generally accepted standard is the 45-105 sets for the 4-string bass and 45-130 for the 5-string bass. Start experimenting with them: after a while, you will be able to understand for sure whether it is worth lowering the tuning and increasing the thickness of the strings.
If you have any questions about the choice of bass strings that we have not covered in this article, then just call or write to our manager - we will answer you as soon as possible!