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Author Topic: String Problems on my Larrivee  (Read 15931 times)
cantwellm
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« on: May 06, 2010, 03:23:37 AM »

Hi folks
I have string problems. I got my first Larrivee 6 weeks ago (D03-HH) because i fell in love with the sound. It has called to me every day since then to play, which I have done with great affection. Until recently. Since the strings on her were light gauge (Cleartones I assume - due to little sticker stating such on the pickguard) I figured I could get more of what I loved out of her if I put mediums on. So I took her to local Luthier who slapped on a set of D'Addario EXP17 (mediums) and made the appropriate adjustments. When I got home to play her she sounded all "twangy" or "metalic" - which I attributed to that typical new string sound. But its been a week now and it just doesnt sound special to me anymore. So I've just ripped them off in disgust and put a set of D'Addario EJ17 (medium PB) which I had kicking around to see if it resolved the problem. So far the git still has the new string sound (though maybe not as bad) but I'll have to wait a couple of days of playing to see how things setttle. So what's the problem? Coated strings? (Are Cleartones coated?) Going from Light to Medium? D'Addario vs Cleartones? Help! I want my sweet sweet sound back! A gross of donuts for anyone who can help me!! crying
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« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2010, 03:30:19 AM »

Try some John Pearse or Martin SP 80/20s.  They always sound a bit more "woody" than PBs to me.  And yes the Cleartone strings are coated which makes them sound somewhat muffled.
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« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2010, 12:42:27 PM »

cantwellm Now the time to play....well at least the string game.Everyone goes thru this.You may want to try the cleartone mediums.Keep a list of the different strings you try,what you liked or disliked about each.You already know the sound you want now the time to match the tone in your head with whats out there in strings.


I know this doesn't really help but what the heck..... bigrin
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« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2010, 12:51:07 PM »

Try some smoother round cores, I have a thing for DR Sunbeam 13-56, but the Newtones are a great choice for round core too. Or, I also like the Curt Managan line too, they have a compression wrap and fusion matched make up, plus you can get the reg uncoated or coated now. (I did not care for the coated version myself but there are those who do like coated strings). All these will give you a non-twangy mellower ring which is my preference too.
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« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2010, 12:55:54 PM »

So what's the problem?

There isn't a problem. Different strings sound.................yup, you guessed it, different. Just keep trying strings to you hit what your ear likes.
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jimmy buffett
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« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2010, 02:18:59 PM »

cantwellm,  this is an elusive thing - to find "the" strings that you'll like best.  When I got my JCL 40th Anniversary rw model, it sounded great, but the volume was poor. I put Newtone Master Class mediums on her and the guitar just sings. The tone was awesome as well.

Feeling that I had just been converted from using lights (like the EJ16s), I couldn't wait to put them on my L05.  Imagine my surprise when all I could hear was that "twangy metallic" sound.  I played it like this for a couple of months, but couldn't get used to the sound and wanted my old L05 back.  Two weeks ago I put on EJ16s and rediscovered what I liked about that instrument.  I'msticking with the mediums on the JCL.

I guess the lesson is that no single set of strings or gauge will satisfy you on every guitar.  Like Rob says, just try a bunch of different sets and keep notes about what you like, and what you didn't.  You'll know when a string is just not working for you...

jimmy
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« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2010, 03:54:34 PM »

We all 'hear' something different, taste not withstanding. Personally I can't stand Cleartones (no 'color' soft and they buzzed on my L),  and love the D-Addarios.

Maybe you will get what you want with Martin Marquis SP's They have a silk tail and somewhat softer tone, and are really nice strings.  And you just might prefer the tone of lights. Nothing wrong with liking what you like.
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« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2010, 07:31:45 PM »

Thanks everybody for these insights. Very very helpful.   It seems I'm not crazy for hating expensive, well regarded strings. I'll probably start my string theory game with Cleartone mediums since the lights seemed to work great on my git but, if needed, I'll work my way through your suggested medium string types. And if still no joy, I'll go back to lights. But tell me,  if I do go back to lights will I need to make a neck adjustment and if so how easy is it to do myself with that funky little tool rather than letting it sit unplayed with a luthier for a week....?  

More string suggestions welcome...

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« Reply #8 on: May 07, 2010, 06:21:04 PM »

Hi folks
I have string problems. I got my first Larrivee 6 weeks ago (D03-HH) because i fell in love with the sound. It has called to me every day since then to play, which I have done with great affection. Until recently. Since the strings on her were light gauge (Cleartones I assume - due to little sticker stating such on the pickguard) I figured I could get more of what I loved out of her if I put mediums on. So I took her to local Luthier who slapped on a set of D'Addario EXP17 (mediums) and made the appropriate adjustments. When I got home to play her she sounded all "twangy" or "metalic" - which I attributed to that typical new string sound. But its been a week now and it just doesnt sound special to me anymore. So I've just ripped them off in disgust and put a set of D'Addario EJ17 (medium PB) which I had kicking around to see if it resolved the problem. So far the git still has the new string sound (though maybe not as bad) but I'll have to wait a couple of days of playing to see how things setttle. So what's the problem? Coated strings? (Are Cleartones coated?) Going from Light to Medium? D'Addario vs Cleartones? Help! I want my sweet sweet sound back! A gross of donuts for anyone who can help me!! crying
Exact same scenario here. I have those EXP's on my L-03R and I have really tried to like them., gave them time to break in etc. and it's that "twangy" "metallilc" sound that I hate as well. I can't decide whether to try more mediums or get the guitar set up again for lights  ? Maybe medium lights is the answer ?? So far my favorites are the John Pearse lights.  I'll be watching this thread for sure. Good luck finding the ones that bring the music  back to your guitar. I find myself playing my S6 Seagull more now.  Time for a change.
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« Reply #9 on: May 07, 2010, 06:30:27 PM »

Gotta repeat myself here, try some medium or medium heavy round cores or compression wrapped like the Managans, heres a pro review, sounds just like solving the issue you are having. 1 caveate, read the instructions and Do Not Cut before bringing them to pitch if you go round core.

http://www.maurysmusic.com/dr_sunbeam_strings___todd_s_review

http://www.maurysmusic.com/dr_sunbeam_strings___tony_s_review

Good Luck 
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cantwellm
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« Reply #10 on: May 07, 2010, 09:21:58 PM »

Thanks Michael T,
Good reference. From all the advice I think I will try the following strings in the following order....

1. DR Sunbeam RCA-12 (or 13?) Medium Strings
2. John Pearse 610LM Silk Light-Medium Strings
3. Newtone Master Class mediums
4. Martin SP 80/20s
5. Curt Managan

Will start tomorrow...stay tuned...

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« Reply #11 on: May 07, 2010, 11:39:27 PM »

Hello!

I have never been a fan of Martin strings....always john pearse or D'addario...hover for wome strange reason my LV05 sounds its best with Clapton's choice light strings!   It just comes to life!

Big full and rich sound!

My previous tried and true JP's and daddarios just sound........ wrong!!!

But on my Seagull they sound great and the Martin's the opposite!


Go figure!


Try em on!


Good luck!



Bubblemaker!
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cantwellm
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« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2010, 04:04:42 PM »

For those interested, I'll be giving a running commentary over the next few weeks regarding how my string quest is going. To start, I picked up the following strings:
1. DR Sunbeam RCA-12 Medium Strings
2. Newtone Master Class mediums
3. Martin SP 80/20s

And had to special order the John Pearse 610LM Silks. Guy at my local git shop never heard of Curt Managan...

So I've already mounted the DR Sunbeam RCA-12 Medium and can report back that the dreaded twangy metallic sound was nearly completely removed. The strings are far more pleasing to my ears than the  D'Addario EXP17's. They ring well, good volume, without the brassiness. I do like them. BUT....there is a certain something missing: a "mellifluousness" that was present with the original Cleartone lights.  Maybe it has something to do with how the git interacts with my own body, I dunno? Of course, the DR's have only been on a day so I'm not concluding anything yet. I'll keep them on a week or two before making final  comments but at least I enjoy picking up my git and playing her again! So thanks to all of you for steering me in the right direction..

For those of you with your own SAS issues (String Acquisition Syndrome), keep in mind that my git is a limited edition Dread South American hog b/s with sitka top...
Cheers

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« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2010, 04:21:16 PM »

I would recommend recording each set at about the same time on them (play time), seriously, in a few weeks you'll be amazed at what you think you remember and what they actually sound like. The mind is a funny thing.
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« Reply #14 on: May 10, 2010, 04:05:55 PM »


 Guy at my local git shop never heard of Curt Managan...

Well first, it is Curt Mangan. Strings and Beyond has very good prices on all strings, and they carry everything I think.
Curt Mangan strings are available in P/B, 80/20 and coated varieties.
You can also order them direct from the curtmangan.com
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cantwellm
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« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2010, 01:45:00 AM »

String Update. Took off  DR Sunbeam RCA-12's. My opinion about them described above didnt change for the first week...I thought they were not too bad though I didn't feel the love. Then I decided to play my Larrivee next my "Joodee" Brand 70's Martin knockoff: with the Cleartones on my D03, my Joodee sounded like it was a Happy Meal toy. With the Sunbeams, I'm sad to report I couldnt hear much of a difference...
So now I've put on the Martin SP 80/20s which, frankly, make my guitar sound like a zither when strummed lightly. I don't care for zithers.

Next up -  Newtone Master Class mediums. Will advise.
 
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« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2010, 05:55:34 AM »

I'm a big an of Martin "Marquis" (silk wrapped ball end) but not Martin SPs.
If you are a masochist, try the Marquis as well.  They are mellower.
I too do not care for the EJs that so many forumites consider the "go-to" string. To each their own...
JP 80/20s also worth considering.

Enjoy the search, ignore the price tag...in the end it's worth it!
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« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2010, 11:53:12 PM »

String Update #2. Took off  zither-like Martin SP 80/20s and put on Newtone Master Class mediums. Muucchhh better. Nice tone, soft and balanced. Could use a a tad more bass but thus far they seem decent. Need to give them another week to settle. However, while my tonal memory of the Cleartones is fading, I feel that they have yet to be bested...

I have to mail-order medium Cleartones + John Pearse 610LM Silk Light-Mediums (not available in my local shops) and I'll test 'em as soon as I can.

So if anybody is actually still following this thread - stay tuned...

PS Question: What's the best on-line store to buy strings in/to Canada?


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« Reply #18 on: May 15, 2010, 12:10:42 AM »

String Update #2. ...
I have to mail-order ... John Pearse 610LM Silk Light-Mediums ...
PS Question: What's the best on-line store to buy strings in/to Canada?

Not sure about the Canada part, but I've ordered 610LM's from JustStrings.com and found their prices competitive and service excellent.

As usual, no personal or financial interest.
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« Reply #19 on: May 22, 2010, 06:37:51 AM »

ive been really diggin the ernie ball earthwoods.  even their lighter gauge strings sound pretty full to me.  i had a set of those on my sd-50, then i put a set of pb elixers which i thought i remembered being AWESOME and i felt completely let down.  im going to try a pack of sunbeams soon though.  i have always dug dr too especially on my electric (although ive been jamming some slinkys lately) but i dont know, even if i like them, if ill continue to buy them because my local store doesnt carry em and i go through strings like crazy... hence the elixer hopeful.... and shipping is pretty ridiculous.  plus the earthwood packaging smells nice.
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