Learning to play the bass guitar can be very rewarding after you’ve invested enough time in it to be able to get to a point where you are satisfied with your sound. But first, you will have to muscle through a few months of sounding like some sort of dying animal and keeping at it without getting frustrated. So before you even get to the desired point, you will have to know a bit about the instrument itself and some of the basics before buying it. And the most basic information about the bass and any guitar really, is this – without the right strings they are just an overpriced pieced of wood.
When picking out the right guitar bass strings the first thing that you need to consider is the gauge. Simply put, this refers to how thick the strings are and what kind of sound they can produce based on whether you go for the lighter or the heavier variety. The difference is very easy to detect and the heavier strings are much better for robust and deeper tones, while the lighter are better for faster bass lines and are easier to play and get your fingers over. Even if you want to eventually play the more resonant notes, in the beginning it would be best to start out with the lighter variety, at least for the higher strings. This is less because of a lack of skill on your part and more because it will be difficult on your fingers and you won’t be able to play for very long.
Then there is the different materials that these strings can be made out of and the different wounds of the strings as well. There are a lot of choices that can be made for both of these and it’s pretty hard to set them all straight especially if you are just starting out and barely know how to hit the right string, let alone what a wound is (the type of wrap that is used on the core wire). For the sake of simplicity, you should really focus mainly on getting either the flatwound or roundwound, the former of which is made out of steel and the later out of nickel and stainless steel. These are the two most reliable choices and serve as a good base until you have a bit more experience under your belt, and know more about the type of sound you want to get out of the wire.
The last thing you really need to know about buying guitar bass stringsis that you will need to buy new ones after a certain time. This seems very obvious, but the mistake that most beginners make is believing that the bass itself is out of tune instead of the wires being too worn out to produce the right sounds. The exact time when you need to change them will vary on how you play, the type of music you play and whether you wipe everything doing properly after a session. Regardless of how much time you’ve had them, if you notice a difference in tone or that you are tensing the strings too much, then it’s better not to wait until they snap but get yourself a new set.