Jump to content

Dear guest,

Welcome to the biggest community for bass players in Europe. You'll find the site a great source of information and advice.

Why not sign up now and:

  • Say hello - tell us about your playing, your gear and where you're from.
  • Search the database for inspiration or to find out more about your instrument
  • Upload an avatar and profile picture
  • Buy one of the thousands of items in our marketplace
  • Safely sell your items to a community of proven enthusiasts
  • Upload pictures, audio and videos
  • Buy exclusive items at discount through our shop (coming soon!)

Go on, click the button and become part of it today!

Sign in to follow this  
XoSo

What do you think is the ideal string gauge to learn on?

Recommended Posts

Start light and build up, take the plunge with heavies or happy balance of mediums? Also roundwound, flatwound or tapewound? Confused I am.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Go for regular gauge, so that when you break a string or need new ones you can quickly resource them, rather than have to hunt high & low for someone that stocks what you`ve gotten used to. Rounds/flats/tapes - well depends what type of music really, rounds can be dulled down to sound flat-like, some flats can be brightened up to sound round-like. I learnt to play on flats, probably easier on the fingertips of the fretting hand.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Take a trip to your local shop and try lots of basses with different strings.

I prefer mine light but that doesn't mean you will.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It might be just me, but I feel like articulation on flats is harder and less noticeable. Also, they produce less unwanted noise, such as fretbuzz etc.

Because of these reasons, I'd rather recommend regular gauge steel roundwound strings for starters, so you can learn to mute strings you don't play on, and to articulate (vibrato, legato) well. Then start experimenting with other gauges and types of strings and see where it gets you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
IMO if a bass is well set up the gauge of the strings is not important.

If you're just starting out on bass there are far more important things to worry about and master before you get into stuff like this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
+1

If you're just starting on bass, then string choice should be very low on your list of priorities, along with scale length, string spacing, nut material, and colour of the knobs.

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Steady, you guys, if the OP has small hands like mine, and/or fragile skin, strings matter a lot when you learn. I learned on thick roundwounds, and thought they were OK, until I tried flats on a thinner neck (moving from my student cheapo to a 4-string Warwick). Suddently I was able to play faster, without too much string noise ('cos when you have small hands you have to move them a lot over the fretboard!) and the allergic reaction caused by nickel rounds was less of a problem on flats.
So I'd say, soft flats - Thomastik or D'Addario Chromes. Forget about horrid rounds. Edited by bluejay

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'd add another vote to 'it doesn't matter too much' apart from Bluejay's excellent point about Nickel allergies.

You're going to need those callouses eventually, so suck it up - they're a badge of honour ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
[quote name='ahpook' timestamp='1507799982' post='3387995']
I'd add another vote to 'it doesn't matter too much' apart from Bluejay's excellent point about Nickel allergies.

You're going to need those callouses eventually, so suck it up - they're a badge of honour ;)
[/quote]

I have had students with Nickel allergies and this can make playing an instrument uncomfortable indeed.

I would most definitely recommend a really good set up on an instrument too. Again, on the subject of students, I’ve had many come through the door with, for example some old classical guitar that has been dug up out of the attic. Nor surprisingly, most of them play like an old dog.

Flat wounds and Round wounds have had a mention. A nice in between string or look at is the half wound otherwise known as ground wound. D’Addario make a nice set of half wound strings that are a nice in between of tone and feel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have been playing a year now and know exactly what I like (medium gauge, nickel rounds) but I have tried a good few to get that knowledge and the difference was massive in some cases. What I would suggest is going to a decent music shop with a shed load of second hand basses. Have a play with as many widths of neck and types of strings as you can as the odds are you will find something that just feels better to you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×