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Choosing a 5

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mud Flaps, Jan 20, 2005.

  1. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    If the thread is still bumped to the front page of the basses subforum, you can read about my recent trip to the GC. Previously, my philosophy on 5'ers was: "the wider, the better." This philosophy was thwarted when I tried out some sort of Warwick Streamer 5'er with larger string spacing than I had ever seen on a 5 (20 mm). It ended up being less comfortable than the Stingray 5, which had much tighter string spacing. I could play it, but it hurt the top of my right wrist. I could play the Stingray 5 much better.

    I am choosing between a Stingray and an MTD Kingston (or possibly Heir, both have a string spacing of 19 mm) solely on feel . It is important to note that I had some trouble playing the Stingray 5, but I'm not sure if this had to do with me never owning a 5 string since my first bass which I got rid over three years ago after playing for a month and got a 4, or if it was the string spacing. I don't think I have any way of trying out a Kingston.

    Main Question: Which bass would I be more comfortable playing, the Stingray or Kingston?

    Additional Questions:

    1. What is the string spacing (in mm) of the Stingray 5?

    2. What is the sound difference between the Stingray and Kingston? How much of a difference?

    3. What other basses have the same string spacing as the Kingston and Stingray?

    Please do not respond with something like: "I would go with the Kingston because **I** like wider string spacing." You and I have different preferences. I need to find the bass that will best fit **my** needs.

    thank you very, very much.
  2. Then go out and find the bass that fits your needs. Other people including myself cant tell you what bass is going to fit your needs.

    However *I* would go with the StingRay 5.
  3. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    How would I find out without trying out the Kingston? Is there any other 5's with 19 mm string spacing that I would be able to find at a GC? Do you think my difficulty in playing the Stingray 5 was attributed to my lack of experience with 5 string basses or the string spacing of the Stingray?
  4. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Lakland fivers have 19mm spacing, but you may not have a Lakland dealer nearby.

    If the GC has any Pedullas, they are available with 19mm spacing as an option.

    The Stingray is 17mm IIRC. A little narrower than a Zon or Peavey Cirrus.
  5. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    I just thought of another brand that GC might have. Ibanez BTB fivers have 19mm spacing.

    There will be some difficulty adjusting to playing a five, but for me it wasn't that big of a deal. You really need to try a 19mm five before you decide if it is you or the Stingray.
  6. fcoda


    Jan 23, 2002
    Are there any stores in the area other than GC , if so visit them all and play whatever 5s they have. You will not be able to a/b them but you should be able to narrow down the field
  7. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    That reminds me, I'm actually a loyal Lakland enthusiast when it comes to 4 strings. But I decided that the neck is simply too chunky on their 5's. That's not a problem on the Kingston or the Stingray though.
  8. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    But if there is a five string Lakland nearby, it could help you decide whether you need 19mm bridge spacing.
  9. Mud Flaps

    Mud Flaps

    Feb 3, 2003
    Norton, MA
    No such luck :D

    Edit: Embellisher, do any of these basses have 19 mm spacing? Thanks for all the help, I really, really, appreciate it.
  10. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    Any of which basses?:confused:
  11. lefty007


    Jan 19, 2004
    Miami, FL
    I have owned both a Kingston 5 and a StingRay 5.

    K5: Very light-weigh / SR5: Usually heavy

    K5: Very good B-string / SR5: Okay B-string (my opinion)

    K5: 35" scale and short upper horn means the first position (or first frets), require that you extend you arm farther - it can be tiring in long sets standing up.

    SR5: 34" scale and longer upper horn means a very comfortable playing position -but remember they tend to be heavy.

    K5: passive electronics / SR5: active electronics

    The K5 is good for 1 sound and that is it, the SR5 has a little more flexibility. The K5 has a more direct or pronounced mid-range naturally.

    The K5 is built from basswood, a very light and porous wood. This makes for a somewhat flimsy or not very solid bass that didn't sound very good when slapping. The K5 is great for fingerstyle, but that is it. The SR5 on the other hand is a slapping machine.

    Also, you are comparing a $500 bass with a $1200 bass.

    I personally like 17mm spacing (SR5) because I play mostly fingerstyle with occasional slapping and because the neck on basses with tight bridge spacing tend to be narrower and more comfortable to me.

    Basses with 19mm spacing are very good for slapping (minus the Kingston 5 because its sound) but the wider neck can be uncomfortable if you have small hands or short fingers. The Kingston's neck is very thin front to back, which initially feels very fast and comfy if you are playing by yourself, but playing at the gig is a different story.

    That said, the StingRay 5 are amongst the most comfortable 5'ers out there

    I sold my StingRay 5 because the weight issue (the ones I have had were always 10 lbs. +) and because eventually I realized I like dual pickup basses better than a single MM pickup in that position, but I really miss the NECK of StingRay 5s; they are really nice.

    All that being said, I go with what ebmuscmanlvr83 said.

    Really the only one that can decide what is good for you is yourself. Try many brands and kinds of 5'ers and see what feels and sounds right to you.
  12. Funkize you

    Funkize you Guest

    Nov 4, 2003
    Westminster Ca.
    My vote would be for a lakland.
  13. michaeldl


    Jan 2, 2005
    Warwick Streamer string spacing is adjustable- starts 20mm @ bridge but you can kick that down if the string spacing is really the uncomfortable part (vs. the wider than average neck)

    Then again, have yet to play one myself :meh: