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What do you prefer stainless or nickel strings?


manfredbass

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I use stainless.

 

They have a clearer fundamental to my ears when playing with a band. You can make 'em sound as thuddy as you want through muting/light attack/etc. But when you want a bright attack or clear harmonics, they're there.

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I prefer stainless also for the reasons BenLoy stated. They are also somewhat easier on my fingers than Nickel wounds.

 

I also prefer redheads with green eyes, a well prepared steak, good trout streams, a loyal dog and a good smoke at the end of a hard day.

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

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Originally posted by mattulator:

I prefer stainless also for the reasons BenLoy stated. They are also somewhat easier on my fingers than Nickel wounds.

 

I also prefer redheads with green eyes, a well prepared steak, good trout streams, a loyal dog and a good smoke at the end of a hard day.

Ditto for every reason set above...

Hey matt sounds like a good simple life you have over there. Any work for carpenters near you? ;)

 

Ok so now that we have this issue settled what would nickel strings be good for, anyway? Studio work? A particular style of music? Or absolutely nothing?

"The world will still be turning when you've gone." - Black Sabbath

 

Band site: www.finespunmusic.com

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on the "hecho en mexico" 99 J i had, i really loved the sound and feel of DR sunbeams.

 

i have some slowounds on my cirrus BXP right, which are also nickel, that sound right nice, but i think i'd be happier with stainless. for whatever reason, peavey cirrus thermalfused strings don't sound right on my cirrus BXP. i have been considering going with d'addario pro steels or DR highbeams for my next string purchase for the cirrus. since i'm not gigging with it at the moment, that won't be for a long time.

 

so i guess my answer is, "whichever provides the sound for which i'm looking on that particular instrument." not coincidentally, that is my usual response.

 

robb.

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I definitely prefer stainless steel too. Again, for a lot of the same reasons. But it's also a feel thing. I don't like the way nickel feels on my fingertips. It almost feels like some sort of residue rubs off. It's kind of unpleasant, to be honest.

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I prefer nickel. Mostly for how it feels under my fingers, and I've always liked the way it sounds.

On the other hand, I've only used a couple of sets of stainless steel, and that's going back almost 15 years, so maybe they are worth a revisit?

"Start listening to music!".

-Jeremy C

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Depends on the bass. I use nickels to warm up the sound on my EMG equipped P-bass and steels to brighten up the sound of my passive 5 string. Mostly though, I do prefer steels for all the same reasons already mentioned, plus they seem to last longer than nickel.
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After a few gigs, they all kinda sound the same to me.

Sure, Stainless Steel strings sound brilliant when you first put them on but, by the end of one long night, they've already lost much of their sparkle.

 

I don't leave strings on for very long. My strings are always new. It's my only "effect". I don't ever use ANY processing. Ever. Not even compression. (although I bump up the gain or use a pick when/if the song calls for it).

"I don't play Bass..I play SONGS."
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Nickel. Bright and punchy without being overbright and loosing the punchy.

Tenstrum

 

"Paranoid? Probably. But just because you're paranoid doesn't mean there isn't an invisible demon about to eat your face."

Harry Dresden, Storm Front

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I prefer not to choose. I always try to match strings to a specific bass, to accentuate what I think are its best features. For some that means steel, for some that means nickel, and for some that's not as important a consideration.
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Originally posted by dcr:

I prefer not to choose. I always try to match strings to a specific bass, to accentuate what I think are its best features. For some that means steel, for some that means nickel, and for some that's not as important a consideration.

Ditto. :thu:

Nothing is as it seems but everything is exactly what it is - B. Banzai

 

Life is what happens while you are busy playing in bands.

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Originally posted by BenLoy:

Personally, I liked Paul McCartney's answer to the "what strings do you use" question in a BassPlayer interview:

 

"I use long, shiny ones."

:D

 

I use stainless. For the reasons which Ben spoke of much earlier in this thread.

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I think there's enough difference between brands that I wouldn't lump all strings into just material-categories.

 

I like DR High Beams. I didn't like Dean Markley Steels, though.

 

I'm starting to get used to the nylon tape-wound strings on my Rob Allen. They feel very nice-like under the fingers.

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  • 2 weeks later...
I've been playing stainless for approx 27 years and have recently coverted to Nickels. Had an interesting time going through the DR range of strings, which I think are very confusingly named, but all the DR strngs I tried had excellent sound characteristics and they felt great. The difference is small but I have a feeling that nickels have a richer midband than stainless. Not easy to do a proper comparison unless you have 2 identical basses and rigs with diff strings!
"We will make you bob your head whether you want to or not". - David Sisk
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I've always used nickels. I went from GHS Boomers to EB Hybrid Slinky.

 

I think the strings on my Fender P are the Fender Super Bass because the E is tapered, but I'm not certain. I haven't had it long and am going to take it in soon for a setup, probably with the Slinkys.

 

I do have a set of DR Red Devils on my Warwick right now. They have a different feel because tehy are coated, but I'm not sure if they are nickel or stainless. Great sounding strings on the 'wick fo shizzle.

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My real preference is for chromes, as in D'Addario flatwounds. My second choice is nickel-plated strings. I get enough high-end from a fresh set of strings that I seldom use stainless steel unless I'm doing retro-Yes-Rush type material.

:wave:

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