13 Best Bass Guitar Strings

List Updated November 2020

Bestselling Bass Guitar Strings in 2020


Ernie Ball Regular Slinky Nickel Wound Bass Set, .050 - .105

Ernie Ball Regular Slinky Nickel Wound Bass Set, .050 - .105
BESTSELLER NO. 1 in 2020
  • Most popular bass string alloy
  • Well balanced
  • Good all around sound

D'Addario EXL160 Nickel Wound Bass Guitar Strings, Medium, 50-105, Long Scale

D'Addario EXL160 Nickel Wound Bass Guitar Strings, Medium, 50-105, Long Scale
BESTSELLER NO. 2 in 2020
  • D'Addario's top-selling heavy gauge bass set
  • Round wound with nickelplated steel for a distinctive bright tone with clear fundamentals and booming, tight low end
  • Fits long scale basses with a string scale length of up to 36 1/4 inches
  • String Gauges: Wound .050, .070, .085, .105
  • Made in the U.S.A. for the highest quality and performance

DR Strings Bass Strings, Black Beauties - Extra-Life, Black-Coated

DR Strings Bass Strings, Black Beauties - Extra-Life, Black-Coated
BESTSELLER NO. 3 in 2020
  • Gauge: Medium
  • Hand-made with black polymer coat
  • Signature crisp tone, clarity, and volume of DR's traditional handmade strings
  • Super-thin coating on the plain strings and on the wrap wire
  • Extended string life

GHS Strings M3045 4-String Bass Boomers, Nickel-Plated Electric Bass Strings, Long Scale, Medium (.045-.105)

GHS Strings M3045 4-String Bass Boomers, Nickel-Plated Electric Bass Strings, Long Scale, Medium (.045-.105)
BESTSELLER NO. 4 in 2020
  • Model: M3045
  • Featuring the air-tight Fresh Pack, guaranteed fresh from the factory!
  • Roundwound Nickel Plated Steel on Strengthened Core
  • The classic POWER string for increased brilliance, volume, sustain and strength.
  • Medium Gauge: 045-065-085-105

DR Strings NGB-45 Coated Nickel Bass Guitar Strings, Medium

DR Strings NGB-45 Coated Nickel Bass Guitar Strings, Medium
BESTSELLER NO. 5 in 2020
  • Luminescent
  • Long Lasting
  • No loss of tone

Bass Strings - Electric Bass Guitar Strings - Lazea Bright Tone - Nickel Alloy - Round Wound - 4 Strings - .050 - .105

Bass Strings - Electric Bass Guitar Strings - Lazea Bright Tone - Nickel Alloy - Round Wound - 4 Strings - .050 - .105
BESTSELLER NO. 6 in 2020
  • Round wound bass strings with nickel alloy
  • 4 - string gauge: .050, .070, .085, .105
  • Brighter, more of a ringing and wider sound
  • Good texture and very flexible
  • Perfect for slap style

Kmise A2043 Nickel Plated Bass Guitar Strings, Light

Kmise A2043 Nickel Plated Bass Guitar Strings, Light
BESTSELLER NO. 7 in 2020
  • high quality and testing is fine
  • set of 4 strings
  • fit for super bass

Ernie Ball Super Slinky Nickel Wound Set, .009 - .042

Ernie Ball Super Slinky Nickel Wound Set, .009 - .042
BESTSELLER NO. 8 in 2020
  • The plain strings are made of specially tempered tin plated high carbon steel
  • Super Slinky wound strings are made from nickel plated steel wire wrapped around a hex shaped steel core wire
  • Gauges .009 .011 .016 .024w .032 .042

Rotosound RB45 Rotobass Nickel Roundwound Strings

Rotosound RB45 Rotobass Nickel Roundwound Strings
BESTSELLER NO. 9 in 2020
  • NICKEL (UNSILKED) 45 65 85 105

DR Strings Hi-Beam - Stainless Steel Round Core 45-105

DR Strings Hi-Beam - Stainless Steel Round Core 45-105
BESTSELLER NO. 10 in 2020
  • Gauge: Medium
  • Round wound and constructed on a round core, which is unique in the industry
  • Highly flexible and musically but not harshly bright
  • Renowned for durability, unusually long life, consistency and string-to-string balance
  • They don't eat your frets. HI-BEAMS are the string to choose for brightness, punch and ease of playing

GHS Strings Bass BOOMERS H3045, Heavy Set

GHS Strings Bass BOOMERS H3045, Heavy Set
BESTSELLER NO. 11 in 2020
  • GHS Strings H3045 4-String Bass Boomers, Nickel-Plated Electric Bass Strings, Long Scale, Heavy (.050-.115).
  • Featuring the air-tight Fresh Pack, guaranteed fresh from the factory!
  • Round wound Nickel-Plated Steel on Strengthened Core.
  • The classic POWER string for increased brilliance, volume, sustain and strength.
  • Heavy Gauge: 050-070-095-115

D'Addario ECB82 Chromes Bass Guitar Strings, Medium, 50-105, Long Scale

D'Addario ECB82 Chromes Bass Guitar Strings, Medium, 50-105, Long Scale
BESTSELLER NO. 12 in 2020
  • D'Addario's medium gauge flatwound bass guitar set
  • Ribbon wound and polished for ultra-smooth feel and warm, mellow tone
  • Fits long scale basses with a string scale length of up to 36 1/4 inches
  • Made in the U.S.A. for the highest quality and performance
  • String Gauges: Wound .050, .070, .085, .105

Fender 7250M Nickel Plated Steel Roundwound Long Scale Electric Bass Guitar Strings - Medium

Fender 7250M Nickel Plated Steel Roundwound Long Scale Electric Bass Guitar Strings - Medium
BESTSELLER NO. 13 in 2020
  • Fender super bass 7250's are an excellent all-purpose bass string. String Guages: .045-.100. String Ends: Ball End
  • They are particularly good for rock, funk, and any style in which the bass needs to cut through.
  • Fender super bass 7250's combine the high output and dynamic sound of steel with the smooth feel of nickel.
  • The result is a string with bright highs and a thunderous low end.
  • Super bass 7250's are installed at the factory on all Fender us and Mexico basses.

Damping the Guitar Strings

Damping is an abrupt stop to the sound of a chord or strum. It is an important technique in many styles of guitar playing.

Another method to dampen open strings is to use part of your right (pick) hand to dampen the strings. This is very common in many forms of Spanish and Flamingo music. Sometimes strings that have not been strummed or plucked still start to vibrate because of "sympathetic" vibrations of the strings that have been played. Sometimes this sympathetic vibration will be heard at an octave higher than you might expect. In some cases your left hand thumb can be brought around the neck just enough to dampen the sixth or even the fifth strings if needed.

In some cases you may want to dampen strings even as you pick single notes, this is usually done with the heel of the right hand while you also pick the string. You might also practice playing a "flat pick" song normally and then completely but lightly dampened. It makes a great new sound for the same song. I have done this for many country type songs.

A significantly more difficult technique is very similar to damping which is creating "bell tones". Most guitarists have some experience with doing this while they tune a guitar, because bell tones can help you to get a guitar into a more accurate tuned condition if you don't have an electronic tuner. Typically bell tones are produced by lightly touching the string at the 5th, 7th, or 12th fret just after picking the string. In this case you are not damping, but you are causing only the upper harmonic of the string to sound. The technique can be expanded to every location on the guitar, but you must pick the string with your right hand while holding the pick with an outstretched index finger. It is the index finger that will be used to slightly touch the string at specific points along the neck of the guitar. Thes points are proportional to the length of the string.

If for example you are holding the first string at the third fret (G note), then there are harmonic bell tones that you could play at the point where the string would be one half the way toward the bridge, but now this is three frets higher than the G note you are holding. This proportion holds for the 5th, and 7th locations also meaning they would be 5 frets higher than the G note you are holding and 7 frets higher than the G note you are holding. The 5th and 7th locations produce weaker bell tones that the 12th fret version.

If you are holding a typical C chord starting at the first fret of the second string, you could in fact strum the guitar in a pattern similar to the shape of the C chord three frets higher than the 12th fret. This is very tricky and you do dampen some strings that you do not want to sound in the process, but it gives you many more bell tones to potentially play.

Damping is particularly important in jazz which often wants to stop one particular sound before starting another sound. Damping has a lot to offer the guitarist that can master the technique.

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