DR Strings MR5-45 Hi-Beam Bass Strings Review
Our Verdict and Review Summary
The Hi-Beams are a brighter, slap-style bass string that will definitely be a change of pace from your more conventional bass tones, like Ernie Ball and Elixir. They're very expressive and brisk, so an excellent fit for more technical styles, particularly jazz and funk.
The name of the DR Hi-Beams is a bit of a spoiler alert situation.
Hi-beams equal a bright tone that's much brighter and higher than most of your typical bass string sets. It's not a rumbling or booming tone, but far more friendly to slap bass and more technical styles.
Marcus Miller and Sting are good example of the sound produced by the Hi-Beams. Fans of those playing styles are ideal candidates. They're the kind of string that you hear more than you feel, and a very musical bass string with a lot of character and consistent tone.
To sweeten the deal, they're hand made in the United States. No machines or conveyer belts.
Given the right context, these strings sound incredibly good and sophisticated.
Comparison to other bass strings
You can compare the Hi-Beams to some of the other popular bass string sets. The best tone comparison here would probably be the Thomastik-Infeld set. The Elixirs and Ernie Balls are going to produce a much warmer and fuller sound.
DR Strings MR5-45 Hi-Beam
Ernie Ball Regular Slinky
Elixir Bass Strings
Thomastik-Infeld JF344 Jazz Flatwound Bass Guitar Strings
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Note that we do not provide numbered category ratings for bass strings.
IDEAL FOR: Slap bass, technical styles, jazz, funk, expressive playing, and faster styles that need to cut through the mix.
- Just a great option for slap bass
- A lot cheaper than than the Thomastik-Infeld strings, with a similar style
- Flexible for easier bends and technique
- Absolutely perfect for jazz and funk
- Not a good fit for smoother bass sounds or modern styles
DR Strings MR5-45 Hi-Beam Bass Price Guide
Prices updated Mon, September 25th, 2023.
Price History for DR Strings MR5-45 Hi-Beam Stainless Steel Bass Guitar Strings - .045-.125 Medium, 5-string
|Current Price||$31.99||September 22, 2023|
|Highest Price||$31.99||August 11, 2023|
|Lowest Price||$31.99||August 11, 2023|
Last price changes
|$31.99||August 11, 2023|
Overall tone, nuance, and style
There are different gauges of the Hi-Beams, but I wouldn't recommend going too heavy, just because the strength of these strings is in the lighter tones. Jazz and funk bass players will be especially well-served, and those styles don't require a heavier string to begin with.
They have plenty of snap, so you'll get a very high-end percussive response, almost like hitting a snare or hi-hat.
Mark's demo for Sweetwater showcases it in under a minute.
Best use cases
As I've mentioned, these string are designed to be up front and very noticeable in the mix.
Players that don't at least dabble in slap bass should look elsewhere, but any kind of technical styles are good candidates here. Groups that feature the bass are going to be best served by the DR Hi-Beams.
And like I mentioned prior (it's worth repeating), jazz and funk are just perfect landing spots.
Conclusion and Questions
The context of the Hi-Beams is pretty clear, so make sure you understand the style intent before buying. I'd recommend listening to a few more demos before buying, just to make sure they're the sound you're looking for.
It's certainly a more unique set among bass strings, with a somewhat narrower niche.
Just make sure you're in that niche.
If you have questions about our DR Hi-Beams review, drop them in the comments section below and we'll chat.