DR Introduces K3 Coating and Neon Bass Strings

(ShackMan | Posted 2010-09-25)

DR Introduces K3 Coating and Neon Bass Strings

Sure, we've all seen them. Neon strings, colored strings, mint-flavored strings (haven't you?), but something goes off in our heads when we see them. We think, "That can't be good. That has to be a gimmick to sell the strings, because they probably couldn't sell them otherwise." Of course, that makes sense on some level: make a product that isn't as good but make it shiny and glowy and all kinds of neon, and at least some kids will buy it, right? What if those options weren't mutually exclusive? What if you could get something that was just as good and rock some awesome shiny glowy stuff too?

That's the idea behind DR's new Neon Superstrings Coated Bass Strings, and they're bragging about the new K3 coating that's making it all possible. Often with color coated strings, either the color would fade quickly or the coating would come off entirely. In recently published testing, DR's new K3 coating lasts a full 9 times longer and the coating doesn't fray or get stripped in that time period, or ever, for that matter. Testers have yet to see a peeling or stripped coating in any of its tests. DR cites in its lab report that the strings only suffered "a worn spot, and some dust from the coating and the picks." DR are proud to be making the new coating in-house as well, and cite that as a major factor in the higher quality of their new strings.

As for the tone, DR makes no apologies there either, although their estimates remain the same as with the previous coating. "3 to 4 times as long as uncoated strings," says the press release, and I can't help but feel a little surprised that if the coating itself and the neon color lasts 9 times longer and won't fray, why don't we have a higher estimate that the strings themselves last longer?

Still, looking at pictures of players using them online (such as Traci Alderich of the group Kore), they look super bright even in natural lighting, and even brighter under UV lights. I'll have to get my hands on some and try them out to see what I think. For now, I go back to my boring, gimmick-less, metal grey roundwound strings.

James Rushin is a bassist, keyboardist, writer, and composer living and working in the Greater Pittsburgh area. He has performed with Selmer artist Tim Price, Curtis Johnson, guitarists Ken Karsh and Joe Negri. His compositions have been featured at West Virginia University and Valley Forge Christian College. He has studied bass with Jeff Mangone and Dr. Andrew Kohn.

Feel free to e-mail James with comments, questions, concerns, at james.rushin@musicgearreview.com

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