Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Review - Ernie Ball Cobalt Strings

Was looking for some new strings because of recently spending a lot of time w/ a floyd rose equipped guitar and the regular slinkys just weren't holding up to the whammy abuse. About to switch brands completely, but the new ernie ball cobalts had a wave of hype behind them so decided it was worth a go, though, yeah, a little skeptical. Well, the skepticism was unfounded because these definitely sound and feel drastically different from an ordinary set. Instead of needing to strain your years to hear a difference you can actually hear it without even plugging in. Noticed an immediate difference in volume, and after focusing on the tonality itself thought it had really nice low mids and tightened up some of the flabby mud that lives down there. The highs were also very clear and present and if you like messing with harmonics they literally jump out at you, even the ones that normally don't want to come out at all. The feel is a bit softer and smoother that what you may be used to, as well. Feels a bit strange though if you've put tens of thousands of hours on a regular set, so may take getting used to. Overall impressions are that it is being something vastly different than the norm. Whether that difference is better or worse is going to depend on what tone your after. Generally, these seem aggressive and punchy in nature so if that's your cup of tea they may make you very happy. But if you prefer mellower or jazzy sounds you may not like them at all. They do seem to have solved some tuning issues, so probably going to keep them on the floating bridge guitar, but stick with regulars on the others so more flavors to cover more sonic terrain ya know.