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DR Strings Electric Bass - Sunbeams Nickel Plated on Round Cores Lite, .040-.100, NLR-40

DR Strings Electric Bass - Sunbeams Nickel Plated on Round Cores Lite, .040-.100, NLR-40
DR Strings
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7 Reviews
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0% Recommend this product (0 of 7 responses)
By Tom H.
DR Sunbeams NLR-40
August 26, 2013
I have a 25 year old custom fretless bass with a Zeta Piezo bridge and a Bartolini MM style magnetic pickup. I also have a fretted Ibanez EDA 900 with a dual pickup system. After experimenting with round, flat, compression, ground, stainless, nickel, monel, hex and round core strings I believe these are the best of all.

Understand first that these strings are best suited for a fretless where a player is using a finese style not typical to fretted instruments. Sunbeams are very sensitive to the amount of energy you put into them. The round core allows for more natural and unrestricted string vibration which can cause excess buzz on instruments with some playing techniques. So, if you play more aggressively Sunbeams will require adjustment to your instrument and playing style. If this is the case, raising the action and/or easing up on the attack will help. I found when using these strings on my EDA 900 that simply using less energy in my string attack was all I needed. Ironically, I found this made playing those longer sets much easier. Honestly, just let the strings do their job of moving more freely and help you become a better finesse and technical player. If you have to play hard with a pick or otherwise, go with something else.

On the fretless is where these strings really seem to make a difference. These are brighter than flat or ground (half) rounds, yet smooth and easy on the fingers and fingerboard. As mentioned they are more supple than hex core strings and give excellent response with both magnetic and piezo pickups. The Sunbeams do offer a greater level of definition, clarity and playability that fretless players seeking to be more present into the mix should appreciate.

So far the strings seem to last as long as any other. The cost is remarkably reasonable for a round core string as production is more difficult to be sure. As for installation, these do require a bit of caution when trimming and tightening. I gently crimp the end of the strings with a vice grip and fold them back a bit to prevent the wrap windings from loosening and they are all set.
By Justin B.
Sunbeams on a Fender Fretless
September 28, 2012
I tossed these on a Tony Franklin Fender Precision Fretless,..after regretably trying a few other brands,..and man what a difference these strings made!

They gave my fretless that "WOW" factor that I originally had when I first plugged that bass in for the very first time! They sound that much cooler than the other ones I tried in between the time I first played the factory set, 3 other disappointing sets, then finally these.

Everyone know how dependable DR's are at this point. But if you have a fretless bass (un-epoxied fretboard) and are looking for a sick set that won't eat yer beautiful bass neck up - go with these. Not to mention, they're totally affordable compared to others that you could totally blow crazy money on as you explore all the string manufacturers out. They're easily worth the $$ and they sound the way you want them too.
By Joshua C.
Too much string excursion.
February 10, 2011
I know people rave about these strings and that they have a great reputation. But for me, they do NOT fit the bill. At all. I give them three stars just to acknowledge that DR is a good company and not ripping anyone off--otherwise I'll have nothing to do with Sunbeams.

The problem I have with these is that even though they are nice-sounding nickel wrap rounds, they have a round core and that causes them to have a really big string excursion. My basses are all set up with really low action and straight necks so strings like these make tons and tons of noise in that situation. On the other hand nickel rounds with hex cores don't do this. Also, I found the note definition of these strings lacking compared to others. And finally, they are a pain to install.

Maybe these are great if you have a medium-high action but the way my basses are setup, these are not at all appropriate. Perhaps Nickel Lo-Riders would be better for me because I think they use hex cores.
By Scotty
DR Sun-Beams for Fretless
January 2, 2011
Ive been playing music for over 45 years, bass for the last 30.
These strings are on an Late 70s custom P-base style fretless, 34 inch neck, maple body with P/J DiMarzios

These things are Slippery, even for nickels. After years of trying many nickel round wounds on the fretless and always returning to flats, I was amazed how quickly I forgot these were rounds. Nice!

The strings lost their initial zing fairly quickly and settled into sugary smooth melodic highs, very detailed mids with plenty of punch and growl, and nice tight controlled lows. Overall a well balanced sound that could be tweaked to almost any genre. I've strapped these things on a couple of fretted guitars and although they sound good and feel incredible... I still prefer steel.

As for stamina, they are at about the 50 hour mark with no sign of deterioration (still early).

Bottom line: In my opinion these are about the best nickels out there and can really bring a fretless to life.
I will be trying other strings on the fretless but I think I'll keep coming home to these for a long time. Definitely worth a try!
By Dave
nothing sounds better than a fresh set of sunbeams
March 9, 2010
I love these strings, they have a great warm and rich tone. Use them on several basses.
By Alfred G.
DR Sunbeams NLR-40
August 14, 2009
Great strings for any bass. I like the .040 gauge. it's softer, lighter than the heavier gage. Also long lived.
By Johnathan
Sunbeam Review
August 14, 2009
I am very satisfied with these strings. I usually play D'addario strings and have tried several different types within that brand but now I do not think I will buy anything other than DR Sumbeams.

I am pleased with every aspect, so far...the only thing that I am not sure about is the life of the string because I have only played these strings for about two weeks and three shows.






1st G

Nickel Plated on Round Core



2nd D

Nickel Plated on Round Core



3rd A

Nickel Plated on Round Core



4th E

Nickel Plated on Round Core





"SUNBEAMS are another step forward on a continuing path for players who continually seek to upgrade their skills and tools to achieve greater musical satisfaction. SUNBEAMS are a step forward for the traditional player, as well as the advanced exponent of fretless bass, both of whom want brightness and warmth. SUNBEAMS feature the easily recognizable feel and flexibility of DR round core construction, with nickel warmth, softness of feel, and increased response to magnetic pickups due to the sensitive magnetic content (compared with stainless steel) of the nickel plated wrap wire. Tony Franklin says "SUNBEAMS amaze me… I love them on my fretless."

DR Strings

"From the first handmade strings DR made for Marcus Miller and Jeff Healey (both of whom have played DR's for over six years), to our latest development, the remarkable ZEBRA electric-acoustic strings, DR HandMade Strings approaches sound and string design differently from other makers… we are all players. The secret to the way we make DR strings is the word "slow." No other company we know makes strings one at a time, so very slowly and carefully. Quality of sound is paramount… along with the highest possible specifications for materials. Longevity and durability are our next concerns. We are NOT a high speed, mass production company. We have an elaborate quality control system.

For a relatively new company, we have been embraced by a surprising number of "Legends and Masters" of guitar and bass. A partial list of DR endorsees includes Sting, Marcus Miller, Jeff Healey, Adam Clayton of U2, Warren Haynes of GOV'T MULE and THE ALLMAN BROTHERS BAND, Jonas Hellborg, Bo Diddley, "Skunk" Baxter, Victor Bailey, Steve Kaufman, Percy Jones, Darryl Jones of THE ROLLING STONES, Rick Derringer, Mick Karnes, Andreas Kisser, Max Cavalera, & Paulo Jr. of SEPULTURA, Birelli Legren, Trey Anastasio and Mick Gordon of PHISH, SMASHING PUMPKINS, Gary Tallent, Tony Franklin, Ty Tabor & Doug Pinnock of KING'S X, Dimebag Darrell of PANTERA, Scott Ian, Paul Crook, & Frank Bello of ANTHRAX, Stefan Lessard with THE DAVE MATTHEWS BAND, Peter Rowan, Shawn Lane, Paul Pesco Matt Freeman with RANCID, Per Gessle of ROXETTE, Sharlee D'Angelo of MERCYFUL FATE, and VERUCA SALT.

DR Strings are made with more metal than one realizes at first. By way of example, before a .042 gauge DR string is carefully wound, core wire and wrap wire that total .043 are prepared. After a process we call "Compression-Winding", a DR string that gauges a .042 is produced.

The ratios and principles of "TITE-FIT" / "Compression-Winding" are used for the specifications and manufacture of all DR strings. At DR we craft our strings at tension. The following is one example of how the DR wrap/ratio formula works… in this case for .042's. Core wire is .016, wrap wire is .0135 x 2 (top and bottom covers). Total material gauges .043 before winding and .042 after winding."




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