Opinions on Flatwounds?

Discussion in 'Amps & Cabs' started by Layne Matz, Jul 13, 2019.

  1. Layne Matz

    Layne Matz Well-Known Member

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    Little over a month ago I bought a set of daddario .13-56 chrome flatwounds, I put them on my DIY archtop style acoustic which Ive modified heavily. These are the strings I needed all along, with out a doubt. Majority of the tones I've been seeking for years (apart from slide guitar) were not easily made with regular roundwound guitar strings.

    Never before was I able to slide so easily or create such impeccable jazz tones without these strings. I havent tried lighter gauge flatwounds yet, might put some .11 flats on my SG next string change. Been using my 'archtop' and esquire primarily for thr last couple months. I am utterly shocked that I overlooked these until just over a month ago.

    Im curious what you think about them.
     
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  2. donepearce

    donepearce Well-Known Member

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    I think you said it all when you said jazz. That is where flatwounds shine. They really don't suit rock and blues - not enough overtones for those genres. So while I wouldn't use them, I understand why you would.
     
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  3. rotorhead

    rotorhead Well-Known Member

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    I have no use for them on guitars, but I use them on bass. I hate a twangy bass and flats help out a lot with giving me a much more mellow low end.
     
  4. Biddlin

    Biddlin Well-Known Member

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    I have my Les Paul Custom strung with those very strings and as don says, they're kind of a one trick pony but that's the trick a couple of the singers I work for like.
     
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  5. cerebral gasket

    cerebral gasket Well-Known Member

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    I like flatbread.
     
  6. Bad Penguin

    Bad Penguin Active Member

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    Hate roundworm.
     
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  7. koaguilds

    koaguilds Well-Known Member

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    Can't stanz em!

    I do like the in betweens like GHS Nickel Rockers(rollerwound) and GHS Brite Flats(ground wound)

    I put Brite Flats on a semi hollow and it was sweet. Might be cool on an SG.
     
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  8. Layne Matz

    Layne Matz Well-Known Member

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    I agree that they are not well suited for much outside of jazz and lapsteel but since i only have the one 'acoustic/archtop' they are being used for everything. Main issue is the low e not having the snap that it usually would, and the wound g. I have to say i really think that using these is helping my technique over all, in several ways but primarily by not allowing much bending beyond the high strings and enabling such smooth finger travel. I finger pick exclusively and these strings are the softest I've ever felt.
     
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  9. Sweetums

    Sweetums Active Member

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    D'Addario's Half Rounds are a good compromise between flatwounds and roundwounds for me.
    They are super smooth with no "string squeak" but don't sound too mellow or too dull like a lot of flatwounds.
     
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  10. Johnny Bagadonuts

    Johnny Bagadonuts New Member

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    FWIW, Pyramid Flatwounds + Strat + 1960 Vox AC15 = Nowhere Man.:thumb:
     
  11. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    We used to call those "dollar slicks" back in the Stone Age
    before guitar strings had so many alternatives.

    I tried them on an early electric guitar I owned when I was like 16.
    They were smooth sounding, and I thought they were cool.

    Over many years, I became used to the tone and overtones of
    round wound strings, and never looked back.
    I played mostly acoustic and bass for decades.
    For bass, I tried many different types, including flat wound and tape wound strings
    for a jazzier tone, but didn't really care for it once I discovered
    Rotosound Roundwound strings, favored my one of my all time idols
    John Entwhistle.

    For me, that was it, and I went with Rotosound for a long time.
    Then I discovered Elixir strings, and became a fan of those.
    I still am, although I usually buy D'Addario round wounds when they
    go onside.

    BUT... to answer your question: I like flat wound bass strings for my fretless bass.
    not for guitar, I'm still a fan of round wounds there... But the fretless bass sounds
    great with flat wounds for a really slithery tone. Recently I've been using "ground
    wound" strings on the fretless, and I get more overtones and a crisper high end
    with those.

    For a Jazz tone, you want to emphasize the midrange anyway IMHO... so flats
    ought to be great.
    05d Warmoth Fretless Neck 3.jpg
    For the tone I hear in my head, I like the ground wound strings. They don't chew
    up my lovely rosewood fingerboard the way round wound strings might do.
     
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  12. Layne Matz

    Layne Matz Well-Known Member

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    Dollar slicks? Shop near me sells flatwounds for 30USD/set. I got them on sale for 14, will have to find them online in the future. I've already decided to try them on my '97 Epi SG bass too next time i change the strings.

    That neck looks awfully wide... It occured to me that if my bass' neck was wider I'd add a string or two. What are your opinions on adding more strings? Also, as a long time bassist, have you tried double bass much?

    I always felt that it was harder to get an organic acoustic like tone out of an electeic bass becuase I was going for that jazz bass sound anyways, so I prefer double bass but i do not own one.
     

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