My Favorite String, bar none!
I've been using ProSteels before they technically existed, back in the late '90s when D'Addario's main Stainless Steel string was their "Prism" line (and a karmic shout-out to my good "Aristocratic" friend Bryan Beller for the recommendation way back when!) I was very much a "Rock Guy" and found the Prism's chime, clarity & low-B helped me cut through a mix like nothing I'd played at that point. Around 2003 when D'Addario announced that they were reorganizing their String Line and replacing my beloved Prisms which this new "ProSteels" line, I just about lost it... we're talking not only an angry e-mail but an Angry *Mailed* Letter, the Code Red in this new, now mostly emailed world. A week or so I received a package from D'Addario Customer Service that contained 4 & 5-string sets of ProSteels as well as a T-shirt, Keychain Bottle Opener (PERFECT for my mid-20s-Self ;-) and other Very Nice Swag.
I strung up the 5-string ProSteels with some trepidation, but after a week or so I had realized that the ProSteels just weren't the same as my Prisms... #TheyWereBetter!! In several specific ways, including a stronger singular low-B as well as combining a overall strong low-end & low-mid area with the "Piano Chime" a great set of steel strings should have. Even though I had purchased several sets of "Prisms" to get me through a few years, my stockpiling was unnecessary as ProSteels became my main "String O' Choice" just as a vast increase of my Basses owned happened.
Still, there were a few "niggles" - sometime in their first few years ProSteels lost the Taperwound on it's B-string that made the Prism's such a fantastic one! (I was, and still am, a huge believer that the less windings over a B-string's saddle makes for a more flexible & focused Open B as well as low fretted notes along the string.). I also started doing projects & sessions of the "non-RAWK" variety (an "Alt. Hip-Hop" Band, Electronic/Industrial/Heavy Rock year-long studio session gig, and "Progressive Acoustic" 'DMB meets Rush' band's EP Recording and Live shows) and found there was room for other string's tones in "My Toolbox", including the classic XL Nickels for a more "even tone" than my chimey ProSteels on my P-Bass, D'Addario's Coated EXLs and Half-Rounds for a super-smooth studio Fretless tone, and Coated Phosphor-Bronze strings for live "Acoustic Gigs" and recordings with my beloved Taylor AB-2 Acoustic Bass Guitar (as can be seen I'm a dyed-in-the-wool D'Addario Guy, having grown up 15 minutes from their huge Factory & Operations for other Brands).
However, in 2012 as the "Balanced Tension" Movement was gaining momentum among Bassists, there was word that D'Addario would not only be producing sets based on that but also bringing back their once huge Single String Inventory that had also faded in the late '90s/early '00s that would allow us Bassists to create our own Custom Sets. Once they were released as well as Bass Strings Online were up and running with stock after Winter NAMM 2013, I took the opportunity to give BSO's Jason a call and over 15 minutes or so listening to my wants & needs we came up with my "Core Set" I've been using for the last 3 years: .135T/.100/.075/.055/.40: a well-balanced set with a slightly heavier E-string as I prefer to ride on open-string grooves... and my Beloved Taperwound Low-B back in the set! (Yes. I've done side-by-side comparisons and yes, I still agree with my above thesis except that the move to a heavier .135 from .128/.130 has increased the positives even more!) I've gone back to the ProSteels on some Basses such as my Epiphone Jack Casady Signature Semi-Hollowboy as it's "D'Addario's Version" of his personal brand's Stainless Steel set and had nothing but great tones both live & recorded. I've NEVER had a string breakage or failure in 17 years of exclusive D'Addario String usage, and their Customer Service has *always* been second-to-none: my above "ProSteel Trial Set" and a more recent example of a 5-string set of "Half Rounds" when the B-string's windings at the ball-end was too thick to bend over the saddle of my Custom Spector Fretless' bridge, they IMMEDIATELY 2-day shipped a variety of B-strings of which a .130 Taperwound fit perfectly. And Jason @ BSO is always super-quick with an answer or advice, whether by e-mail or phone.
...it's a pretty damn good time to be a Bassist, at least in terms of Strings! :-D
Reviewed by: (Verified Buyer) Ian P. from Evansville, IN.