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Thread: Opinions on Ernie Ball Cobalt Slinkey strings

  1. #1
    Junior Member dsimms's Avatar
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    Question Opinions on Ernie Ball Cobalt Slinkey strings

    Looking for experience with EB cobalt slinkies. I've been running traditional nickel strings but am considering their cobalts on my '89 CU24 and McNaught singlecut. What say you?
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    Vamanos Pest QueenCityGuitars's Avatar
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    I tried the Ernie Ball Cobalt strings not long ago and didn't care for them at all. I used D'Addario strings forever then switched to Elixir Nanowebs about 5 years ago because I'd rather spend what little free time I have playing the guitar as opposed to changing strings but, I digress. Personally, the way the strings feel is important to me. I've gotten used to the way Elixirs feel. The wound E, A, and D strings on the Cobolts felt very course to me (more so than any other strings I've played; even non-coated strings like D'Addario). I thought the Cobalts sounded fine...but I can't tell a huge tonal difference between D'Addario, Ernie Ball, Elixir, etc. I hope that helps. Try the Cobalts; you may like them.

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    I didn't like them. They felt very stiff and after a short time playing them the surface took on a strange "tacky" feeling, almost as if the metal became pitted. Never had this feeling from another set of strings in my life.

    Sound-wise, they were OK. Maybe a tiny bit more punchy than a set of regular Ernie's, but nothing dramatic at all. Definitely wouldn't recommend them based on the feel but strings are cheap enough to give them a try for yourself and see if you like them.

  4. #4
    Pincher of Harmonics Blackbird's Avatar
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    They sound a bit brighter, and may last a little longer, but seem a little more stiff -- not worth the extra cost, to me.
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    Didn't like the cobalts felt rough to me so I went back to dr strings sound and feel fantastic. I use the pure blues 11 to 49's

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    not a fan.... very stiff
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  8. #8
    Old Guys Rule! Pfloyd57's Avatar
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    Personally, I really like them! It's all I use on my electrics with the exception of the Steinberger. They seem to sound better for longer than the others I've used and I feel like I have less string breakage. Try 'em out and see what you think.
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    Senior Member wardog's Avatar
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    only way to tell it to try them. I like them and the d'addario 9.5 sets. my fav is the hybrid 9 set of ernie colt/regular slinky. I recently got a set of the new m-steel by Ernie ball. Hybrid 9's. I plan try them soon. maybe on the custom 24
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  10. #10
    I was severely impressed Herr Squid's Avatar
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    I personally thought they were harsh and raspy sounding, plus they felt rougher on the fingers than I'm used to. I used Markeley Blue Steels just about forever, and now use plain ol' Slinkys more often than not because they're tolerable-sounding and easy to find.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Sage's Avatar
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    I tried a set of 10s. I liked the sound; they do have a higher output as advertised. I did not like the feel. The windings are thicker on the wound strings and it makes them feel rougher, not at all "buttery" as claimed. I'm also worried the harder alloy in the cobalts will accelerate fret wear, so I went back to regular slinkys.

  12. #12
    Senior Member aduayer's Avatar
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    I am using them in all my 5 guitars. Really liked them. I think it's similar to picks... it's a very personal taste, and in that case my guitars do sound best and for longer.
    it's like anything else guitar wise, you have to try for yourself.

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    Tried 'em once, didn't really notice that much of a difference, possibly because I was always toying with my pickup height. And one thing I didn't like about them (as with all EBs), are that they rust too fast in my hands. All that I can say is that, they're good for others like Slash, Petrucci, but not me.

  14. #14
    SuperD Boogie's Avatar
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    All the negative comments are spot on, only I find those characteristics a good thing. They are a little brighter - no, stronger, like you raised the pup a little higher. The articulation bump is nice since I play mostly 11s. The feel is unique and at first wore my callouses differently, but I'm used to it now. The longevity is the best of any string I've ever used and easily justified the price premium, IMO. They also grind my picks to dust faster. Highly recommended.
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  15. #15
    Junior Member TheRockGuitarGuy's Avatar
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    I have been a brand advocated for D' Addario for many years but these cobalt srtrings are for real. I love them. I play live quite a bit and I have found the cobalts to be extremely responsive and articulate. Worth every penny to me. No issues whatsoever. They feel good and sound great! Longevity is a bonus. Spend the $10 to test for yourself and come to your own conclusion.

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