Whenever I ask for recommendations on Bass Guitar strings, one of the most mentioned makes is Elixir Strings. They are quite different, and not to everyone’s taste, but they have attracted a passionate following. Via Guitarkadia I came across this CBS piece on Gore-Tex, the company behind Elixir Strings (excuse the pre-roll ad):
Traditional strings tend to oxidise as they age. This is natural corrosion of the metal due to the aim as well as sweat and grease from your fingers. This causes the sound of the strings to dull with age. The folks at Gore-Tex set out to cure this problem, using their synthetic coating technology. As they put it “We set out to develop the cure for the common string.” – the aim was to create a set of strings that deliver excellent, long-lasting tone for a long time. Of course it isn’t just the tone, old strings feel different too, and Elixir Strings aim to stay feeling clean and smooth, even after repeated playing.
There are two types of strings in the family: NANOWEB® and POLYWEB®. NANOWEB coated strings are design to sound and feel like uncoated strings, with a micro thin coating that is barely noticeable, they remain bright soundsing for a long while. POLYWEB® coated strings are designed to sound like they have been ‘played in’ – not as harsh, and with a coating that reduces finger noise.
I have played with both types, and they certainly do last a long time – not forever of course, as the coating does eventually give way. If you are a player that generates lots of grease and sweat, or you have a bass that goes a long-time between plays, they are definitely worth checking out.