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Click-clack sound from Music Man

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by GreggBummer, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. Rabidhamster


    Jan 15, 2014
    Masking tape or painters tape instead would leave 300% less disgusting adhesive residue
  2. nomaj


    Apr 2, 2012
    I'm sure you can EQ the click/clack out, and you can play with a softer touch, too, but when I think of a clacking bass, I think of Louis Johnson whomping down on a Sting Ray - which is a good thing. Beeeammmp
  3. CoffeeLove

    CoffeeLove Supporting Member

    Probably the aggressive play or right hand technique causing strings to hit the frets on the neck. As mentioned previously, unless intentional, be certain to pull string-to-string with the right hand and not press down. Also, if there is too much relief in the neck this will cause strings to hit the frets with very little force applied to the strings, can find a youtube video on setting relief. Almost certain one of these is the culprit. I have brand new nickels on my Stingray 5 and zero clank, with low action. If you have a cool luthier close by you can take it to him for a quick evaluation, possibly at no cost if you just want pointers.

    Good luck
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
    dr doofie likes this.
  4. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    Cliff Williams from AC/DC plays a 70's Stingray with Chromes, although I think he changes them pretty often. Plenty of live videos of them in action with it.
  5. ronlitz


    Apr 20, 2008
    Northern Virginia
    I play a Stingray, and have had the same “clank” experience. As others have said, it is the strings hitting the frets - and the MM preamp has a lot of treble, which makes it very noticeable. Raise the action and turn the treble knob to 2.5 (halfway between 0 and the center detent). Also set the mid knob to at least 7.5 to get rid of the mid scoop built into the preamp - this is important. I play with a fairly high action, and my knob settings are: Treble-center;Mid-max;Bass-center. There is just a little clank, but as others have pointed out, it disappears in the band mix.
  6. Chrisk-K


    Jan 20, 2010
    Maryland, USA
    What’s the point of having an EQ if you don’t use it?
  7. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    I'd start with a proper set up and re reevaluate after that is done.
  8. dr_gonzo


    Apr 27, 2017

    I also play a USA SUB as my main bass. I strung it with Jazz TI Flats and haven't looked back. It really takes back on the clickity clackity and leaves you with a full warm bitey tone. If you still want the stingray growl, you can most definetely dial it in with the treble knob and some eq tweaking in your amp or whatever pedal you're using. I definetely recommend this setup.
    GreggBummer and sears like this.
  9. Wissen


    Nov 11, 2007
    Central PA
    To me, that "clacking" sound you describe is the defining characteristic of the sound of that bass. I know Warwicks are clackier, but I do consider that a part of the sound of an EBMM.
    jmac likes this.
  10. dr doofie

    dr doofie

    Jul 6, 2017
    Jersey (New)
    They are very bright. I have chromes on both my stingray and an ibanez because I’m heavy handed and I like a more subdued tone. The Ibanez soaks in the sound (split pickup)
    The stingray shoots it back at me like a ricochet.
    I wouldn’t alter your technique for the sake of sound. Go the other way round, maybe use less bright strings...
  11. Let me start saying that I absolutely adore Music Man products and I'm a proud owner of a Caprice bass, which is definitely different from a Stingray and similar MM instruments. I really love the sound of a Stingray, it sounds amazing on records but it simply didn't work for me for a number of reasons, including its "clankiness".
    Like many others said, that's a defining characteristic of the instrument. My suggestion is to be honest with yourself and decide if you like that bass or not. As much as I love everything about Stingrays, I decided it's not for me and my style.
    Everybody is free to use what they like and I don't want to argue with anyone, but when I see people using flats with a Stingray I can't help thinking: "Here's another guy that doesn't like this bass". I'm sure it's not always the case, but it is sometimes.
    Freddy T and stingray69 like this.
  12. 2 things;
    1. Nature of the beast
    2. Make sure you are not playing 'down' on the strings. The closer your palm is to the strings and fingers straight, the more you will play down on the strings
  13. jmac


    May 23, 2007
    Horsham, Pa
    Exactly, embrace the clack.
    '79 MM Sabre with DR Hi-Beams.
  14. Wallow

    Wallow Supporting Member

    Aug 1, 2016
    My main bass was a Stingray 5 for near a decade and it was definitely prone to clank. Could be tamed somewhat with setup, strings, technique, etc... and I agree the clank is part of the MM sound to be embraced at times. Even still, it was also one of the factors that led me to other basses for day-to-day duties. I still have the 'Ray though and love it for what it is.
  15. JohnArnson


    May 28, 2019
    Cool! ;)
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  16. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Song Surgeon slow downer. https://tinyurl.com/y5dcuqjg
    Makes no sense to me. If it works, then that's what you do. Same for every other rig and bass.

    Imagine a sound tech running FOH saying "sorry, I don't like to use eq while I'm mixing. I just go with the natural sound of the mics, kick, guitar and bass".
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
    Cyborg, dr doofie and stingray69 like this.
  17. Try raising the action a bit. I had a clanky sound with my Squier FSR CV P. It was playing great at the height I originally set the action... however, the "clank" was driving me nuts! I raised the action saddles) a bit and it plays much quieter now. Took a little getting used to the higher action but now I really like it. No CLANK either!
  18. dr doofie

    dr doofie

    Jul 6, 2017
    Jersey (New)
    Why edit? I play fefty...:D
    Jeff Scott likes this.
  19. dr doofie

    dr doofie

    Jul 6, 2017
    Jersey (New)
    Let’s clarify the clack. There’s inconsistent, unintentional, and distracting clack that is a result of any or all of the above things, and there’s Steve Harris clack, IMO the koolest sound an electric bass can make...
  20. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    Jeeeeez, I mizzd thut tie-poh!
    dr doofie likes this.

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