Music Man HH owners, how does the neck pickup sound, in comparison to a P?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by TheOriginalName, Apr 19, 2019.

  1. TheOriginalName


    May 28, 2018
    Hey Talkbass,

    I’m gonna get a new bass soon, and while I love the sound of P basses, I hate the look of the split single coil. I wanted to ask if the Musicman basses with neck pickups come close?
  2. Epitaph04

    Epitaph04 Always overcompensating Supporting Member

    Jul 5, 2010
    They don’t sound all that much alike. The Stingray can be very glassy and active sounding in comparison to the P bass. Some will even say the stingray sounds artificial compared to a typically passive presicion bass. Pbass sounds like a pbass and thats all there really is to it if thats the sound you want. Otherwise, theres companies like bartolini that sell soapbar style pickups with split coils in them if the aesthetics really truly bother you.
  3. mikeswals

    mikeswals Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    It doesn't. The pickup on the Ray is too far forward from where a P pickup is.
    aigman, Luigir, andruca and 2 others like this.
  4. bigtone23


    Dec 10, 2014
    Denver, CO
    The G&L L1000 or Peavey T45 get a P-ish tone without a split coil. Their pickups are located in the same spot as a P. Use them in series mode and there ya go... The L2000 neck pickup in series mode is close, too.
    dralionux, Luigir, joebar and 4 others like this.
  5. LadyLoveStingRay5


    Jul 17, 2004
    If you are referring to the new Stingray Specials , 4th gear or position 4 with the 2 inner coils selected and the eq blended to preference is what I use for Pbass like tone. The new Specials have a more organic tone to them compared to previous models, and they can get close to Fender like tones with different pickup selections an eq setting.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
    HD007, maplenecked and Pet Sounds like this.
  6. Medicine Man

    Medicine Man

    Apr 10, 2015
    The neck pickup on the HH ray is rounder than the bridge, but a ray sounds like a ray. They have a certain "honkyness" that just can't be dialed out, love it or hate it. A G&l L2500 or L2000 is a good active double buck guitar that can get in the ballpark of both a P and a Stingray, but if you want a real deal P sound, get a real deal P.
  7. murmur70


    May 3, 2017
    I feel the same way. The solution for me was a single coil precision(Sting Signature, 51 Reissue, Squire 50's CV, etc.). Granted they don't sound exactly like a split coil.
    wmmj and Slade N like this.
  8. Briton


    Apr 4, 2009
    Yeah I would second that, you cannot really get a Stingray HH sounding like a P Bass any day of the week. The G&L L2000 which is more versatile than any Stingray will more or less get you there, but your best option is just go and buy a P Bass and don't get too concerned about the look!
    MynameisMe and keithbroussard like this.
  9. jmlee

    jmlee Catgut? Not funny. Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2005
    Halifax, Nova Scotia
    ^^This. I have both an HH MusicMan Stingray and a G&L L2500. The MM with the neck bucker soloed does not sound like a P-bass at all. It's warm-sounding for a Ray but that's about all you can say. On the G&L, in passive mode and neck pickup in series, dial back the volume control to about 75% and you're much closer. But that's it, closer. That peculiar mid-forward character of a P is pretty much unique to that split pickup in that position.
  10. 96Brigadier


    Apr 23, 2015
    Did I miss where the OP said he was comparing to a Stingray specifically? I thought he said Music Man, which makes more than the Stingray.

    I’ve owned a Stingray, Big Al, Reflex, and Bongo. All Music Man basses. While I agree the Stingray doesn’t sound like a Pbass (nor is it designed to), the Bongo can do just about any sound you want. While I liked them all, the Stingray, Reflex and Big Al are all gone, but both my Bongos remain and always will. They’re light, great ergonomics, and sound fantastic, including being able to sound close to a P. The Big Al would be my next favourite tone wise.
    wmmj and cchorney like this.
  11. Fresh Eddie

    Fresh Eddie

    Nov 13, 2008
    New England
    You can get rectangular pickup covers for split coil P-Bass pickups. Makes them look like soapbars.
    Kilgore777 likes this.
  12. LadyLoveStingRay5


    Jul 17, 2004
    Also worth mentioning that this MusicMan bass on the right is what made me sell my Fender Pbass.
    IPA, wmmj, raphaeld and 9 others like this.
  13. Stevorebob

    Stevorebob Well... I Am Here, Aren't I? Supporting Member

    Sep 29, 2011
    Los Angeles
    Yeah, as others have said, you’re not going to get there with a StingRay. The StingRay neck pickup is woolier, maybe muddier. The split-coil P pickup is quite unique. Maybe look for a bass with an offset split-coil soap bar in the P position, or a Reverend Mercalli with its split brick pickup (mine did the P thing very well). But my best advice would be to get over the aesthetics, and get yourself a P.
    Jscriv likes this.
  14. LadyLoveStingRay5


    Jul 17, 2004
    I think we assumed OP was asking about Stingray since thread title asked about HH model.
    MMiller28 likes this.
  15. 9M2E


    Dec 6, 2011
    Middleport, NY
    As a stingray 4h/5h player for 20 years and after taking a leap and getting a G&L Kiloton... if you want a bass that can be a stingray and a p, it's got it. The SRHH doesn't pull off the tone IMHO.
  16. Wisebass


    Jan 12, 2017
    Lost in Space
    Hi TheOriginalName :)

    Leo did that. And he found the sweet spot for the pickup.

    Leo did that one too. :D But the sweet spot is not the same and (IMO) not in the neck position.

    He did it right the first time! :roflmao:
    (edit: a Ray with two pickups is no Ray IMO)

    Talking about Leo :D and pickups and sweet spots….


    Maybe you are the guy who will like this?

    may the bass be with you

    wmmj, cheechi, TinIndian and 2 others like this.
  17. LadyLoveStingRay5


    Jul 17, 2004
    Scroll down to the 4th post on this page by member @pickles . He posted some sound clips of different basses. You can hear some Pbass compared the the Stingray5 Special HH . Its the clip labeled SR5S 4.mp3
    . Judge for yourself how close it gets to Pbass tone.:headphone:

    EBMM StingRay Special Club
    Pet Sounds likes this.
  18. jam.majors


    Mar 24, 2009
    Louisville, Ky
  19. 96Brigadier


    Apr 23, 2015
    My Reflex was an HH, one of my Bongos is an HH. The Sterling comes in an HH. You could be right he was thinking Stingray, but Music Man makes lots of different HH models, several of which will get him closer to a P than a Stingray will.
    Loring and lowdownthump like this.