About Nylon Tapewound Bass Strings

Nylon Tapewound electric bass strings, as the name suggests, involve a layer of nylon wrapped around the metal winding. This produces a much darker, warmer and softer tone, and is much easier on the fingers.

The nylon wrapping can go on the outside of a flatwound string, as is the case of Rotosound Tru Bass 88 and others, or a roundwound string, such as the Fender Nylon Filament Roundwound. Naturally, the nylon tape on roundwound version is brighter than the flatwound (for more information about round and flatwound strings, visit the bass string guide.)

Nylon tapewounds are often considered the closest you can get to an upright bass sound, given that there is more "thump" and less sustain. They also maintain the same character of sound for a very long time.. there is much less of the "very bright and new sounding out of the box, noticeably more dead with time" effect of roundwound strings.

If you have ever heard Abbey Road by the Beatles, Paul McCartney is using nylon tapewound strings on the entire recording. If you have ever seen solid black strings, those are [black] nylon tapewound.

Here are some models by major manufacturers - you can go to these specific strings on the right navigation pane for more info and prices.

Nylon tape on flatwound

Rotosound Tru Bass 88
  - (Black tapewound) Can be heard on Abbey Road - The Beatles, Transformer - Lou Reed, Town Called Malice - The Jam

Fender Nylon Tapewound - Dark nylon flatwound string by Fender

LaBella Deep Talkin Bass - L-760N series of Deep Talkin Bass are black nylon flatwound

Nylon tape on roundwound

Fender Nylon Filament Roundwound - "Made for players that want a brighter tone than the Nylon Tapewound 9120s, but still want a string that is easy on the fingers."

For fun, here is a comprehensive list of tapewound bass strings, from the Talkbass Forums