BASS STRINGS OVERVIEW*
Bass strings can significantly affect the sound of your instrument. You may want to experiment with different brands to determine the sound you like best on your bass (the same string can produce varied results on different basses). Strings are made of several different types of materials: all-metal, synthetic-core and gut-core (gut-core and synthetic-core strings are wound with metal). Although strings once were made solely of gut (sheep or lamb intestines), all-gut strings are rarely used today (they're expensive and rapidly go out-of-tune). For directions on how to change strings, visit our Changing Strings page. The following section highlights differences between various types of strings.
Synthetic Core These strings use a core made out of a durable synthetic product such as perlon or kevlar, and are wrapped with metals such as aluminum or silver. Synthetic-core strings such as Pirastro's Obligato are designed to replicate the rich sound of gut strings, and feature a warm, bright tone without requiring the frequent tuning of gut-core strings.
Metal Strings All-metal strings are often described as having a bright, loud sound. These strings generally have a steel core. Steel-core strings are wound with various metals such as silver, titanium, nickel or steel. All-metal strings often remain in tune better than other strings (the steel core isn’t as impacted by humidity and temperature as gut-core or synthetic-core strings).
Gut Core Strings Some professional bassists prefer gut-core strings because of the rich, warm sound they produce on their instrument. These strings are not as durable as metal or synthetic-core strings, and are more sensitive to humidity and temperature changes (thus requiring more frequent tuning than other strings).
Please be aware that if you choose a bass string set labeled "Solo" tuning, these strings are designed to be tuned one whole-step higher than the standard tuning for basses (instead of tuning your bass to the pitches E, A, D, G, you would tune your bass to the pitches F#, B, E, A ). If the string set is labeled "Orchestra tuning," it means the strings are designed to be tuned the standard E, A, D, G tuning.
String makers also often offer different "gauges" meaning thickness (e.g. light/thin, medium, heavy/thick etc.). If you're unsure which gauge to use, medium is often a good choice.
The following sampling of bass strings features some of the most popular brands (additional brands are available). Strings may be purchased in sets containing all 4 strings or as individual strings, and most of the strings listed below are for 3/4 size basses (the size most adult bass players use). If you need strings for small basses click here: Strings for 1/2 basses.
|STRINGS FOR SMALL BASSES|
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