I replaced my recently broken A string Zyex by an Helicore and I don't like it

Edited: September 22, 2018, 1:33 PM · I've been using a whole Zyex set for almost the past year, and a few days ago I replaced my recently broken A string Zyex by same manufacturer's D'Addario Helicore, which I was told by the vendor that were a level higher than the Zyex.

I thought Zyex were a little better than Helicore, but whatever. Anyways, I've practiced with the new A string and I am not liking it at all, it sounds dull and dead compared specially with the Zyex. I mean, it doesn't sound bad as if it's defective or something, it's simply that it's noticeable worse. Also, supposedly (or for sure), strings are better and sound like no other day the first weeks, so it can only get worse.

Is it normal that I like much more the Zyex?

By the way, I've loved the Zyex all this time.

Can you normally go to the store you bought your strings and change the already opened string you don't like by another one (different model)?

Replies (13)

September 22, 2018, 1:34 PM · Not all strings are good on all violins, regardless of their level of quality (either the quality of the strings or the quality of the violin).
September 22, 2018, 2:39 PM · I heard Helicore is a low-tension string. Maybe your setup is incorrect for a lighter string.
It could also be that the higher tension of the Zyex strings is choking the A, although I haven't used either brand and I'm not sure how different the tensions are.

Edited: September 22, 2018, 4:20 PM · Zyex are high tech composite core strings, while Helicores are steel core strings. There's every reason to expect them to be very different from one another. The Helicores have a less complex sound, which is good for some situations. I'm a little surprised that your shop suggested a Helicore as a substitute for Zyex.
September 22, 2018, 6:17 PM · I was suggested this string because of the brand. Zyex and Helicore are both from D'Addario and are non-gut strings, so that's how it happened.

I'm actually noticing that Zyex strings are a good solid 25% more expensive than the Helicore. So it was the other way around, Zyex are a level higher, not viceversa as I was told.

September 22, 2018, 8:52 PM · Zyex and Helicore are very different.

Helicore is a steel "ropecore". They have a blended steel/synthetic sound, pretty much. More complexity and sweetness than pure steel.

Zyex sounds weirdly plastic-y to me on any violin I've ever tried them on, but that's a to-each-his-own sort of string. Quality is fine.

September 23, 2018, 12:03 AM · Like others, I am surprised they recommended you to put the one string of such different qualities in the set.
You might as well feel disappointed with an A Zyex in an Helicore set. No matter what, the odd one is going to be out of place in the sound range...
September 23, 2018, 3:11 AM · "Is it normal that I like much more the Zyex?"
Absolutely! To each their own! Some like Zyex, some like Helicore, some like Evah Pirazzi, some like Warchal Brilliant...

"Can you normally go to the store you bought your strings and change the already opened string you don't like by another one (different model)?"
Not likely. One of the very frustrating things about violin strings is that sales are final and you have to spend a lot of money if you're on a quest to find which strings sound better on your instrument.

September 23, 2018, 6:27 AM · Short answer - No, you can't change it.
If I go to any shop, "I don't like it" is NOT a valid reason to reject it.
September 23, 2018, 6:41 AM · Sounds like you're supplier BSed you because they were out of stock of Zyex
September 23, 2018, 12:01 PM · For folk fiddle styles the steel core Helicore or the all-steel D'Adarrio -NS- Electric are a very good choice, but not for classical players. You will see a lot more Helicore strings in the Cello and Bass sections. I use a Helicore A on my Viola.
Edited: September 24, 2018, 3:48 AM · "Sounds like you're supplier BSed you because they were out of stock of Zyex"

Well, hahahaha, what if I tell you that you're right and they offered me the Helicore because there were out of stock of individual Zyex strings?

That's my main shop, I was a friend of one of the vendors, but unfortunately he is not working there anymore. I was attended by a new guy.

May be I should try a full Helicore set in order to judge them correctly, but listen, I've just replaced the A string Helicore by a Pirastro's Tonica and it sounds way better, now the sound is complete, it blends with the other Zyex strings quite well, but also, the string itself sounds better.

I'm surprised Zyex are not that loved, at least what I sense in this forum. I'm even more suprised to find out that some of you find the Helicore a better string set.

Edited: September 28, 2018, 4:55 PM · OK, I'm surprised again, I've been 3 days without practicing. Today I played and the Helicore A string now blends perfectly with the rest of the strings, I like it more or less just as much as the Zyex.

What's going on?

I swear that 4 days ago when I replaced it, it sounded really bad compared to the others.

Edited: September 29, 2018, 8:47 AM · All new strings take time to settle in. The more complex the string structure the longer it probably takes. 4 days isn't unusual.


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