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Music Man for the poor man?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Spanqubus, Sep 1, 2004.

  1. Spanqubus


    Apr 28, 2003
    Hey... this is my first time posting in the bass forum, and I was wondering what the cheapest way to get that Music Man sound would be. Unfortunatly I have spent all my money on my rig and now I'm dying for something to go through it. I've been thinking about buying a P-bass and just cuttin it a bit to fit the Basslines MM pick-up, but I'm not too crazy about buying a bass and then cutting into it. Would this be hard to do with the electronics, cutting and all? I know my best bet would be to get a Music Man, but I just can't afford a $1000 bass right now, and I don't wanna buy any of the cheaper ones... I don't really care for the textured finishes. I don't really have a price range, I just wanna know the cheapest way to go.


  2. rogerbmiller

    rogerbmiller Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2003
    Your best bets to get close to the MM sound for as little dollars in my opinion would be (in descending order of price):

    1) Try to find a used stingray that is really beat up. It will price much lower than one that is mint and should sound the same. Occaisionally MM "players" (beat up basses) appear on ebay and they usually do not bid up very high.

    2) Buy a musicman S.U.B. These are under $700 and are very similar to the real thing. Made in the USA, same specs, similar electronics.

    3) Buy a used S.U.B. Should be between $400 and $500.

    4) OLP makes some very impressive clones (approved by Earnie Ball)for $199 or thereabouts, which is considerably cheaper than the S.U.B.. Some people love their OLP's stock. However they are passive. You can easily put a preamp in them and/or drop pin a real MM pickup and guts and you should have something pretty close to a Stingray. Search the boards in TB-- a few TB'ers have modified their OLP's as such and would swear that they have duped the sound of the real deal.

    5) Buy a used OLP and modify it.

    Hope this helps. Good luck to you.
  3. ApeIsHigh81


    Aug 24, 2004
    Just save up and get the real deal. If you want a musicman, get a musicman!
  4. see if you can find an ibanez ATK, it has a very similar vibe and sound to a music man and they can be found real cheap. it can hold you over until you save up enough for the real deal.
  5. It's too bad you couldn't get one of the older TBC basses.

    These things rip MM's to shreds.

    I think only two people on TB have the same type of bass. And the second one doesn't post much.
  6. BassDmb18


    Dec 28, 2002
    Davie, FL
    OLP MM2 , sound great. Play great. Thinner neck than the original, and very good slappable bass. Next to Rondo, they are the best Basses for the bucks. And they look good too.
  7. CamMcIntyre


    Jun 6, 2000
    I can't vouch for the OLPs, however i will vouch for the SUBs. I played one a few months back, and if it wasn't for color choices [i'm partial to the bursts] and a few other factors [namely neck finish-i dig the wood more] if i wanted a rosewood boarded Ray5-they'd be a definate contender. If you can get the coin-get the SUB, you won't be dissapointed, if money wasn't an option-i'd end up with both an SUB5 and another Ray5. :) That's all
  8. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    My opionion: Get a used 'Ray from Ebay. I've gotten several that way, always a good price, always quality instruments. Just use your head when bidding and checking out the details and pics.

    If you long for a 'Ray, you'll ALWAYS long for a 'Ray until you own a real one . . .

    Putting an SD Basslines "ray" pickup in any other bass isn't going to get you the sound. Hell, using one of those won't even get a 'Ray sound out of a 'Ray - I tried, and quickly reverted to the stock 'Ray pickup.
  9. a beat up used stingray can be nice, but i've also seen some very nice ATKs go on ebay for well under $400 -- not the cheap 300 series, but the USA made and flamed koa top versions.

  10. mattmcnewf


    May 27, 2004
    why do the subs have differents colors from the real thing. Just marketing, its cheaper, they have a diffferent look for shure
  11. srxplayer


    May 19, 2004
    Highland, CA

    I got to play one of these last saturday and they sound very Stingray like. Very cool bass. To bad it wasn't for sale I would have bought it off him right there.
  12. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Best cheap way to get stingray tone is an Ibanez ATK.
  13. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    That's like throwing your money away...blowing $3-500 on a bass leaves you $3-500 farther away from that StingRay.

    The advice to buy used or get the S.U.B. is right on...indoorstorm.com has SUB Sterlings in stock for $599.

    Forget the OLP, it's another money sink.
  14. Mobay45

    Mobay45 The artist formerly known as "Big Daddy"

    Apr 28, 2004
    Irving, TX
    I own a Stingray 4 and a SUB 5. I don't care much for the textured finish on the SUB either, but it certainly has the Stingray sound. I just got it last week after picking it up on the bay for under $500 (with a case). I took it to rehearsal last Friday and never even played my SR4. I will be using it for our show tomorrow. Even though I don't care for the paint job and pickguard, I've received several positive words about it's appearance.
  15. Spanqubus


    Apr 28, 2003
    Thanks guys... lots of good advice. I'm gonna look further into all these ideas. I guess I should have stated that I am really impatient and really want a quick fix in getting this sound. I just want to get something that will get me by for a while until I can get the money for a new Stingray. The used basses sound like a good idea, though I prolly want to sell the cheap one when I get the actual MM. Would selling a "double" used bass be hard?
  16. Spanqubus


    Apr 28, 2003
    Another thing, why doesn't the 4 string S.U.B. come in a non-textured finish like the 5? I would def. save up for the four if it wasn't textured.
  17. rogerbmiller

    rogerbmiller Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 16, 2003
    ATK's are becoming increasingly more expensive and more difficult to find. People have caught on to how good they are so they are buying and holding. And when the do show up they are fetching north of $300 (for the 300 series).
  18. CaracasBass


    Jun 16, 2001
    Madrid, Spain
    OK, this means war!!!!!!!
    In my experience....... my "CHEAP" ATK305 sounds a lot better than not one, but 2 MM SR5 that I tried few weeks ago in Miami.

  19. Philthy

    Philthy Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2001
    Flanders, NJ
    I second the motion on ebay. It's a great source to find used Stingrays. I actually got my SR5 on there for an excellent price with case and couldn't be happier. Or another great source is to put an Wanted ad on Talkbass. There some really cool people here and you could definitely find some quality stuff. That's how I got my '93 Stingray 4. Yeah, it had some fret wear and some minor battle scars but for under $700 shipped to me with a nice leather gig bag, I couldn't go wrong. I put a couple of bucks out for a fret dressing and a setup at my local guitar shop and she plays like a dream now.
  20. KenToby


    Aug 15, 2002
    Get the OLP and upgrade the pickup and add a stop box outboard preamp (or rout the body and add an onboard one).

    I have a great job and 19 basses including a Smith Elite, Tobias, Lakland, 2 Jazzes, Ernie Ball Sterling, ZON, a real 1962 P, on and on. I say this not to brag but to show that I could have bought the Stingray if I wanted, but opted to upgrade the OLP and not waste (in my opinion) $600 - $700 by buying the Stingray.
    On a whim I tried a EB stingray and an OLP side by side in Guitar Center and I went home with the used $175 OLP. I invested in a new electronics package and set it up to my specs and my GAS for a Stingray melted away; In my opinion the tone and feel of my OLP is on par with the EB 'Ray.
    As always, I'll may be attacked for writing this but again, if you look at the OLP objectively (take key measurements, evaluate the hardware, etc.) I think you'll at least come to the conclusion that it's worth a shot.

    Go check one out :)

    Thanks KT