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Advice Please

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by JimFiore, Nov 10, 2012.


  1. JimFiore

    JimFiore

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    I'm looking for a little input regarding a new bass. There aren't a lot of stores in my area where I can try out instruments so I'm hoping to get a little feedback here.

    I have a Fender American Standard J w/ DiMarzio p'ups. I love the feel of the instrument but I was never crazy about the sound of it (the new p'ups helped but still not what I'd like). I also have a Musican Man Sterling 5 HH (the original made in USA version). I absolutely love the sound of this instrument. It's a bit of a beast though, as I'm not a big guy (and to be honest, I got the Sterling 5 over the Stingray 5 because it's a little smaller/lighter).

    If I could find a 4 string that felt more like the Fender but had the growl and thump of the Music Man, I'd be a happy guy. FWIW, I also have an MIJ fretless special w/ P bass body/J bass neck that feels equally nice and a Ric 4003 but that's a completely different sort of animal.

    Any thoughts are welcome. Oh, no rich recently deceased uncles to pay for this. I'd sell the J bass to finance a bunch of it. Thanks.
     
  2. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2000
    Location:
    New York City
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    Big Al will give you everything you want.
     
  3. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay Zane guitars and basses endorsed. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Location:
    Sterling, CO.
    Disclosures:
    Endorsed Artist, Sales Representative and Research and Development for Zane Guitars and Basses.
    Have you tried any 4 string Music Man basses? I love my Sterling 4H as well as my Stingray 4H. The Sterling has the smaller body and neck but sounds awesome and is very versatile. It is also a pretty light bass too. Actually, the only Music Man bass that I own where I notice it's weight is my Stingray Classic but it isn't even that bad. Maybe 9lbs. max.
     
  4. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay Zane guitars and basses endorsed. Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Location:
    Sterling, CO.
    Disclosures:
    Endorsed Artist, Sales Representative and Research and Development for Zane Guitars and Basses.
    I also agree with this too. Same with Bongo as it is my favorite Music Man model.
     
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  6. Lowbrow

    Lowbrow Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2008
    Location:
    Oregon, USA
    You might look at G&Ls or the Ibanez ATK series.
     
  7. StuartV

    StuartV Out of GAS!! Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    Location:
    Bristow, VA
    You could look for a StingRay 4 SLO. The TLO is a SR with a Sterling (i.e. not as beefy) neck.

    Or, check out a G&L SB-2. These can be had with a J-style neck. I LOVE my SB-2.
     
  8. JimFiore

    JimFiore

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    Thanks. Unfortunately no place around here sells Music Man or G&L. How do the Big Al and Bongo compare to the Sterling 5, sound-wise?

    I picked up a StingRay 5 and it almost broke my neck. Let me put it this way, my favorite guitar is a Parker Dragonfly. Even my Strat seems heavy by comparison, so perhaps you can understand my issues with some basses!
     
  9. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2000
    Location:
    New York City
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    When I was playing my own music, the Bongo was my main bass. It's got a character all it's own, and I loved the way it fit into the music we were playing. Since I started playing a lot more of other people's music, and since I bought a Big Al my feelings about the Bongo have changed a bit. The Bongo is a super agressive MoFo, and it takes a little work to tame it. At least for me. I set my active basses flat, and then start tweaking from there, but with the Bongo I now set all the knobs about 1/3 of the way up and consider that the flat setting. The Bongo has a definite personality, much like the Stingray has it's own personality, and I think after playing it for so long I just grew a little tired of it and started wanting something different. If you listen to pretty much any Bongo youtube vid, you'll hear the personality I'm talking about. Hard to describe, but it's a certain element that I don't hear in other basses.

    The Big Al on the other hand covers a few more bases (pun intended). It can pretty much nail the sound of lots of other basses, including a P, a J and a stingray. IMO you can't really ask for much more. It goes both passive and active, has a seperate tone control for passive mode. It can be super aggressive, or thick, mellow and rich. I own lots of basses, love lots of them too, but if I was only able to hold onto only one of them it would without question be the Big Al.
     
  10. JimFiore

    JimFiore

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2008
    Location:
    Utica, NY
    Thanks for the ideas. In searching around I came across the G&L L2000. How does that stack up in terms of tone (compared to my MM)? The p'ups look the part, don't know if they sound the part...
     

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