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  1. #26

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    TI's & Chromes are both fine choices IMO.

    I have TI's on my 175 and it is a pretty good match. But they aren't my favorite strings. I think they feel a little squishy.
    I recently played a friends Epi Joe Pass strung with Chromes & it was pretty great. I may try out some Chromes again on the 175 but it may be five years from now because my strings tend to last a really really really long time !!!

    My favorite flats are Curt Mangan. They have a cool vibe.

    A couple of months ago I bought a PRS parlor acoustic. It came with D'addario 12's. I figured the first thing I would do was get some new strings. Nope. Hasn't happened yet as I think they still sound just great. I think I'll just leave them be for a while.

    Gibson strings are a whole different matter. I always think they sound great for a week and then they die.

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  3. #27

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    well all flatwound are squishy
    dead sound.
    But d’addario has more sustain.
    dogal flatwound are best but very pricey. rotosound monel works as it should and costs less.
    Never had curt mangan.

    try newtones

  4. #28

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    You mentioned the gauges - I've been playing around w these too - Actually the
    Chrome 11 set is 11-15-22-30-40-50
    TI Swing 12 set 12-16-20-27-37-50
    Crazy - The TI 12 is mostly LIGHTER than the Chrome 11 set!
    The the Chrome 12 set substantially heavier than either...

  5. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug B
    FYI: Then again, Pat Martino uses GHS Pat Martino String Set: 16-56!

    Yikes!!!
    I can't use anything thicker than 10's, my left wrist simply won't have it. I just put a new set of Chrome 11's on my Seventy-Seven and they are coming off tomorrow because the 10's came in the mail today. 12's are simply painful for me to play, I cannot even imagine 16's!

  6. #30

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    I used Chromes for years and years. Now, for the last ten years I've used TI. The Thomastik strings are more comfortable, sound better, and last much longer.

  7. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by daskren
    You mentioned the gauges - I've been playing around w these too - Actually the
    Chrome 11 set is 11-15-22-30-40-50
    TI Swing 12 set 12-16-20-27-37-50
    Crazy - The TI 12 is mostly LIGHTER than the Chrome 11 set!
    The the Chrome 12 set substantially heavier than either...
    I find it’s those middle - low string gauges that are most critical for comfort of my right hand when fretting chords. The top E can be as heavy as it likes; if you’re not bending it matters a lot less. So I haven’t used Chromes for a long time.

  8. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greentone
    I used Chromes for years and years. Now, for the last ten years I've used TI. The Thomastik strings are more comfortable, sound better, and last much longer.
    I'm going to follow your lead here and order a set for my FA-100 then.

  9. #33
    I used to use Thomastik swing 13’s and George Benson 12’s for about 10 years, but this year was the year i finally grew tired of em. Like i said, i played them for about 10 years and they always served me well. But i just couldn’t bear with the mudd anymore i got from them in some positions. Brand new they sound clear and great for about 3-5 weeks. After that they start to die, and at that point i always had to use fast fret to get some clearness back. So i went and got a set of Daddario chromes 12 and i never was happier with my sound! To me they sound much more like what the greats (Montgomery, Burrell, Smith) used back then, which isn’t supersizing since they are american made strings. They are clear and stay clear, no matter how long you play them, so no fast fret anymore! They also pack a lot of punch due to the higher tension and use of steel which is much more magnetic. The gauges are traditional 12s which i like, and the 52 low e makes for a clear and distinctive bass. To wind it up they are polished like no other string, they feel like glass under your fingers. Daddario makes some beautiful strings!

  10. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by JazzmanLehmann
    To me they sound much more like what the greats (Montgomery, Burrell, Smith) used back then, which isn’t supersizing since they are american made strings. They are clear and stay clear, no matter how long you play them, so no fast fret anymore! They also pack a lot of punch due to the higher tension and use of steel which is much more magnetic.
    The dramatic spread between Chrome lovers and TI lovers is fascinating to me. I've used Chromes for many years on many guitars, and I've been happy with them. They do have a classic mellow jazz tone that reminds me of the greats we all love and emulate. But I finally succumbed to curiosity and bought a set of TI 112s for my Ibanez AF207 - and I love them too. They give it more of an acoustic archtop sound, reminiscent of Johnny Smith's early sound. Despite being laminated, the TIs make my Ibanes sound a lot more like early JS than I ever dreamed it could. The sound I'm talking about is heard well on this great album. Just listen to a few bars of I'm Old Fashioned (the first tune) for an example:


    I think the differences between Chromes and TI flats are easier to understand than many suggest. I'm not convinced that the surface of Chromes is significantly smoother. TIs have less tension than equivalent Chromes, so they flex a bit more under your fingers. I think this is what gives Chromes a slightly sleeker feel - they remain straighter while being played.

    I don't have a problem with sweat, skin oil, etc from my fingers, so I can't comment on whether one brand is more resistant to contamination than the other for people who have this problem. But I've noticed no difference at all between the two in how long they stay clean and smooth. I've had the same TIs on my Ibanez since February 12 (the day they arrived) and the Chromes on my Eastman for about the same period of time. I play the two about the same amount and I wipe a guitar gently and completely with a soft cloth befoe putting it back in the case.

    As for output, I didn't notice a significant difference when I replaced Chromes with TIs on the Ibanez. Chromes are wrapped with stainless steel. And even though stainless steel alloys with a high enough iron content are ferromagnetic, I'm unaware of any stainless steel alloy usable for guitar string wrapping that is as highly magnetic as the "mild" steels used in guitar strings. So I doubt very much that Chromes generate a significantly higher signal voltage than TIs of the same measured diameter from the same pickups on the same guitar (remembering that TIs are a bit thinner than D'As of the same nominal gauge). Scale length may make a difference, as tension is higher on 25 1/2" guitars than 24 3/4". So TIs will sound different and feel "softer" on a 175 than they will on a long scale archtop of similar design and construction.

    The bottom line for me is that TIs and Chromes both sound and feel great but are different animals that suit some guitars and some guitarists better than others. I'd guess that the SS wrap on Chromes will hold up better to heavy sweat, oil etc. I can't speculate as to whether this is also true for the plain steel D'As vs the coated unwrapped TIs because I've had no problem with either. It's like anything else about which people have strong opinions - you have to try them for yourself.

  11. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by nevershouldhavesoldit
    The dramatic spread between Chrome lovers and TI lovers is fascinating to me. I've used Chromes for many years on many guitars, and I've been happy with them. They do have a classic mellow jazz tone that reminds me of the greats we all love and emulate. But I finally succumbed to curiosity and bought a set of TI 112s for my Ibanez AF207 - and I love them too. They give it more of an acoustic archtop sound, reminiscent of Johnny Smith's early sound. Despite being laminated, the TIs make my Ibanes sound a lot more like early JS than I ever dreamed it could. The sound I'm talking about is heard well on this great album. Just listen to a few bars of I'm Old Fashioned (the first tune) for an example:


    I think the differences between Chromes and TI flats are easier to understand than many suggest. I'm not convinced that the surface of Chromes is significantly smoother. TIs have less tension than equivalent Chromes, so they flex a bit more under your fingers. I think this is what gives Chromes a slightly sleeker feel - they remain straighter while being played.

    I don't have a problem with sweat, skin oil, etc from my fingers, so I can't comment on whether one brand is more resistant to contamination than the other for people who have this problem. But I've noticed no difference at all between the two in how long they stay clean and smooth. I've had the same TIs on my Ibanez since February 12 (the day they arrived) and the Chromes on my Eastman for about the same period of time. I play the two about the same amount and I wipe a guitar gently and completely with a soft cloth befoe putting it back in the case.

    As for output, I didn't notice a significant difference when I replaced Chromes with TIs on the Ibanez. Chromes are wrapped with stainless steel. And even though stainless steel alloys with a high enough iron content are ferromagnetic, I'm unaware of any stainless steel alloy usable for guitar string wrapping that is as highly magnetic as the "mild" steels used in guitar strings. So I doubt very much that Chromes generate a significantly higher signal voltage than TIs of the same measured diameter from the same pickups on the same guitar (remembering that TIs are a bit thinner than D'As of the same nominal gauge). Scale length may make a difference, as tension is higher on 25 1/2" guitars than 24 3/4". So TIs will sound different and feel "softer" on a 175 than they will on a long scale archtop of similar design and construction.

    The bottom line for me is that TIs and Chromes both sound and feel great but are different animals that suit some guitars and some guitarists better than others. I'd guess that the SS wrap on Chromes will hold up better to heavy sweat, oil etc. I can't speculate as to whether this is also true for the plain steel D'As vs the coated unwrapped TIs because I've had no problem with either. It's like anything else about which people have strong opinions - you have to try them for yourself.
    Also, the wound Chromes have a hex core and TI have a round core.

  12. #36

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    The ferromagnetism of 'stainless steel' varies widely. Some is not magnetic at all, not even weakly affected by a magnet. Some is closer to mild steel, but I haven't found any that is that highly magnetic. It depends on the alloy. More nickel means more magnetic, to a degree. I haven't used Chromes, or any other flatwounds, in a long time so I can't say how either brand fares in this area. I just don't like the sound of any flatwound strings I've ever tried. That's why they make lots of different types and brands of strings. Everyone likes something different, and I'm fine with that as long as they aren't spending my money.

  13. #37

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    It is possible some nuances are only hearable by the player. So if the player more enjoys the sound it inspires him, so there is more chance to express himself, so there could be worlds difference for the player.

    ***

    the same true for the touch, and other "behavoiur" and attributes of the strings, they could end up way more good expression, and more joy in the playing and music.

    ***

    Comparisons sometimes forget consider durability, which is not a problem, except if the author is talking about prices at the same time. If Chromes preserve enjoyable soumd twice as long then Ti is four times expensive, if TI preserve its sound twice as long, then they are in the same price.

  14. #38
    Just to clear some of the confusion on here,
    stainless steel flatwounds are higher output strings in general. Nickel flats, especially with a round core are considered more soft and warm sounding with less output. Thomastiks are special because they are not just nickel plated strings but true nickel all over, even the flexibel round core of the string is made of pure nickel - less output = warmer, softer sound. Thats just the way it is, and most people like them for that very reason. All SS flats i ever tried, including la bella, gave me much more output, with every guitar that i have and with various pickups. For instance, i never had feedback from my archtop when using the Thomastiks, but when switching to chromes i can get it if i don’t watch it. I really don't know why people seem to have forgotten about those simple rules and laws (nickel vs ss), because back in the day, cats here on the forum knew that, and were passing down the knowledge to beginners or less experienced players. If i remember correctly, la bella and ghs even promote the higher output of their flats on the package, but chromes are the strongest in terms of output i ever tried. And all of that changes sound guys, everything matters! But like it was said before, some like that and some that, and rightly so. I hope this helps,
    Cheers.

  15. #39

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    The core of TI strings are not nickel, they're the same steel as the plain strings, same as every other string. The only difference between cores is that some are round, most are now hexagonal in cross section. Nickel is about as ferromagnetic as iron, as is cobalt. The metals that make up stainless steel, including chromium, vanadium, etc, are not at at ferromagnetic. The strange thing is that if nickel is added to stainless steel it becomes 'austenitic', and is completely inert ferromagnetically. Alnico magnets have little or no iron, just aluminum, nickel, and cobalt. Aluminum is not ferromagnetic but improves other qualities of the alloy. Strings marketed as 'pure nickel' are not pure nickel, but nickel alloys, with most having copper as one of the components. There are no pure nickel strings, and there are no cores made of nickel.

  16. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by sgosnell
    The core of TI strings are not nickel, they're the same steel as the plain strings, same as every other string. The only difference between cores is that some are round, most are now hexagonal in cross section. Nickel is about as ferromagnetic as iron, as is cobalt. The metals that make up stainless steel, including chromium, vanadium, etc, are not at at ferromagnetic. The strange thing is that if nickel is added to stainless steel it becomes 'austenitic', and is completely inert ferromagnetically. Alnico magnets have little or no iron, just aluminum, nickel, and cobalt. Aluminum is not ferromagnetic but improves other qualities of the alloy. Strings marketed as 'pure nickel' are not pure nickel, but nickel alloys, with most having copper as one of the components. There are no pure nickel strings, and there are no cores made of nickel.
    Further, a US nickel coin is 25% nickel but has no attraction to a magnet. This is because nickel’s ferromagnetic properties are blocked when alloyed with some other metals. To the best of my knowledge, neither the stainless steel alloys nor the nickel alloys used in guitar strings is as strongly ferromagnetic as the mild steels similarly used. Further, the ability to generate a signal voltage across a pickup coil is greater in the steel core than in any nickel or SS wrap. The hex core in Chromes is a bit “hotter” in this regard than the thinner round core in the same gauge TIs. But it shouldn’t be a huge difference.