#1
Ok, so I've heard of flatwound strings for bass before, but I want to know more about these flatwound strings for guitar....
What's the difference in sound?
What's the difference in how it feels to play?

Flatwound strings are harder to find, any brands that anybody likes in particular?
I'd like to try them out and see what all the buzz is about...
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#2
i havent tried any personally, but my guitar teacher uses them on his gretsch, theyre apparently geared more towards jazz, giving a flatter, less twangy sound.
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#3
They give a warmer sound. They feel very different as well. As said above, used a lot in jazz for a less bright tone.
#4
Flatwound strings feel smoother, and are mainly used for jazz because of their warm sound. When you slide your hand on the strings it doesn't make that scratchy sound it does on round-wound strings.
#5
I have a question on these to. I generally play jazz and blues music, and I prefer a warmer sound, even for blues. They sound like what I need, but I've heard that flatwounds don't last as long from some people. Also, how differn't is the feel, and is it something that will likely affect my playing?
#7
when you say they don't last as long, is it like normal strings last... lets say a year or two maximum, and these would last... like six months to a year, or is it just a few months worth?
#8
The feel will definitely effect your playing. They're a lot harder to grip with your fingers since there aren't any ridges on them, so bending is quite different.

As far as string life - I'm not sure where you heard they didn't last as long, but flatwound strings last much longer than roundwounds since there's no place for dirt and grime to build up. The plain strings are identical to those on roundwound sets, but the wound strings last, essentially, forever. They don't get dull because they're made that way

You should be replacing normal strings every month or two, not every six months! How bad do those sound when you take them off? If you're getting that much life out of regular strings, then change your treble strings every six months and keep the flatwounds on until you die. I'm not sure what mazzakazza is smoking but maybe he's just repeating what you said?

The tone is very mellow and round, and it's percussive. It's not a bite like you've got with nickel-steel strings, but it's kind of a thwack I guess. There's no finger noise either.
#9
I can't stand to keep a set on more than three months, one or two and that's it. My brother keeps them on forever, and he uses enough effects that it's hard for him to tell when they need a changing. His have lasted over a year before, but then they either start turning a rusty red color, or they break.

On anouther note, what do you mean by percusive, do they get less tone then the round wounds, or do they not give as good of a pop when you pick to hard or something?
#10
Yes, it is hard to explain. It doesn't mean they give less tone or pop, it's just that it sounds different. It sounds woodier, like the difference in sound between an aluminum baseball bat (roundwounds) and a wooden bat (flats).

A really good example of a non-jazz application of flatwounds is Luther Perkins, who played on many of the johnny cash songs. It's a telecaster, so there's a certain amount of twang already, but if you listen to the beginning of something like Folsom Prison Blues, you hear that lovely 'thwack' of the string, almost like popping on a bass. That's how flatwounds sound when you hit them.
#11
Quote by ^-^
when you say they don't last as long, is it like normal strings last... lets say a year or two maximum, and these would last... like six months to a year, or is it just a few months worth?

WHAT! Your strings last up to a year? I change my strings every two months or less.
#12
Quote by ^-^
His have lasted over a year before, but then they either start turning a rusty red color, or they break.




hah by the time you see the first spots of discoloration on the strings, your slightly past due for a change!

i cant say yay or nay as to how long flatwounds last. ive only ever used one set and i got rid of the guitar not long after i put them on there. its was a mexi strat and they really sounded beautiful on there. the tone isn't as sharp as roundwounds and slides are much easier.

what kind of music do you play? if its modern metal that requires a sharp attack and not sludgy doomy stuff, then you may not like the distorted tone. id say try em if you have another guitar that isnt your main one, and try and play some fingerstyle stuff. if you have a strat, definitely try em on that.


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#13
Quote by Roc8995

As far as string life - I'm not sure where you heard they didn't last as long, but flatwound strings last much longer than roundwounds since there's no place for dirt and grime to build up. The plain strings are identical to those on roundwound sets, but the wound strings last, essentially, forever. They don't get dull because they're made that way


Flatwound strings last a long time. They last up until they go false - which is a long time on guitar.
#14
The best way I can think to describe the sound is a "thump" in the midrange, you don't get many overtones just a big fundamental laden tone...

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#15


EAD are round wound, GBe are flat wound. Gives a good balance of tone. Costs me $5 a pack at my local music store, which is the same price as any of their other strings (Except Elixers).

The sound of flatwound I think sounds really good if you're looking for a smooth sound. Really great for Jazz and blues, even rock and country (You can look at any of EJ's work to see how good they sound.).
#16
Quote by FallsDownStairs
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Those are rollerwound; the windings are passed through a roller to make them "flatter" but they're still "round"... They're basically a halfway house between rounds and flats.

You can get "ground round" strings also which are roundwound strings that are passed through a roller to grind off the outside of the windings to make them "flatter"... They are even closer to flatwounds but still have a bit of round wound twang.




(And FWIW round/flat only applys to EAD and possibly G strings... plain strings can't be "flat" or "round")
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#17
Quote by power freak
Those are rollerwound; the windings are passed through a roller to make them "flatter" but they're still "round"... They're basically a halfway house between rounds and flats.

You can get "ground round" strings also which are roundwound strings that are passed through a roller to grind off the outside of the windings to make them "flatter"... They are even closer to flatwounds but still have a bit of round wound twang.




(And FWIW round/flat only applys to EAD and possibly G strings... plain strings can't be "flat" or "round")


My mistake then. It's still the same concept in my eyes. Even if it's made to be a halfway point, it still takes the best of both words and they sound superb. They're also quite affordable.

So I still recommend them, even if it's not true flatwound. Thank you for the clarification though.
#18
as I said earlier, I change my string every month or two, but I was talking about until they're likely to break, especially if you take care of them.

Also, I play jazz, blues, and funk. I don't tend to use a distortion so I don't care if they sound bad with one.

lastly, I only have one electric guitar right now, so when I try them out it'll be it for a month or two.
#19
I wipe down my strings after every use, and get a month max out of them. If i'm playing alot, more like two weeks. I have friends that only change strings every 6-12 months and they feel disgusting to play on and sound a bit dead.

Always liked my round-wounds...for metal and distorted tones, those winds bring out alot of grit hehe