La Bella 710-M Silk and Steel Mediums New
The Good: The strings sound balanced aside from the plain steel G string. One of the better tracks was "Clothes of Sand". There were some pleasant overtones that do not sound metallic. The low strings are surprisingly crisp and clear. The strings look silvery and beautiful.
The Bad: I was very disappointed to find that the G string in my set was not wound as advertised and specified on the package and online: "Silver-Plated Copper Wound on Silk Filaments".
La Bella needs to do some better quality control. It was a plain string looking like a B string. I knew there was going to be issues as soon as I saw it. I don't know if this was intentional or accidental but it was a major disappointment to me. The G string was, not surprisingly, twangy sounding which ruins the sound of the set. Usually people get silk and steel to avoid a metallic "twangy" sound. Giving them a plain steel G is going in the opposite direction of what people expect from Silk and Steel. Therefore I gave a tilt of 3 for this.
I also found the intonation was pretty bad compared to other strings. I became very frustrated trying to tune these up to pitch only to find that when I went higher up the fretboard they would intonate out of tune anyway. I found this problem especially evident on tracks like "Romance". Again, a major part of the problem was the lack of mass on the G string. Therefore, fretting it higher up caused bending which would sharpen the note. Bad intonation is a pet peeve of mine.
The high strings are not as crisp as the bass strings, lacking punch and clarity. This is probably just due to the small gauge of the strings.
If you manage to get a set that comes with a wound G as advertised I'd recommend them for jazz, fast fret work, or for those who like an easy action. These strings are ill suited for detuned songs and I would not recommend them for that purpose.
Overall Score (Sumtotal of Scores)