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Music Man Sterling Fretless

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by CrawlingEye, Apr 18, 2001.


  1. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    I think I finally figured out what bass I want. Music Man Sterling Fretless, after a trip to the local guitar shop and a test-run for about 1/2 hour on the Music Man Sterling fretless, I've decided on it. I didn't play anything that was EXTREMELY fast. But it was a REALLY nice bass. I think I may like it more than even the stingrays, I didn't like active basses at all before this. But it really changed my mind.

    It gets GREAT lows. I don't know what position I had the voicing in, but I put it towards the bridge, and cranked the lows all the way up, cut my highs all the way out, and turned my mids down a little. It got a really REALLY clean deep low end. Even with the roundwounds on it. Although I'd most likely change over to flats.

    As far as it being one of my first experiences with a fretless? I loved it. My intonation was perfectly fine. I didn't even look while I was playing that much, and when I did look to check on myself, I was pressing down in the right spots.

    I think this will be my next bass.
     
  2. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Hail, my testing and all is done. Thanks for the advice, Angus. I actually think it helped about the bridge pup. Although, you were wrong about how hard it would be for me to switch to a fretless. I was fully adapted by the end of my 1/2 hour. :)
     
  3. Jake15

    Jake15

    Jan 17, 2001
    USA, PA
    That bass got a really good review in BASSPLAYER magazine.
    By the way, what color was it and how about the picgaurd.
     
  4. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    It was a burst, I believe a sunburst, and it had a white pick gaurd. It was EXTREMELY good looking. I'd take her to bed if she didn't have nuts!
     
  5. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Actually, it was a sunburst with a white pickgaurd now that I thought about it. It was EXTREMELY good looking, and sounded twice as good as it looked! (which by no means is saying it looked bad)

    I'm pushing to make the purchase within 2 months.
     
  6. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    You'll find your intonation under a microscope (or with people) isnt nearly as good as you think!

    Voicing has nothing nothing nothing to do with pickups. Voicings (generally) refer to how you arrange the notes within a chord.

    Anyway, good choice. Lined/Unlined?
     
  7. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    I played one exactly like that one at GC. Very nice looking, for sure, but you need to play a Pedulla fretless before you buy the Sterling.
     
  8. Can't disagree with that.
     
  9. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    I don't know if a Pedulla is out of your price range, if it is, ignore the fact that I am agreeing with Munji on you needing to demo a Pedulla before you commit.

    Another fretless that you need to demo is the Peavey Cirrus. Stingrays and Sterlings are great, but - ::dons asbestos underwear:: - I like the Cirrus more, and it costs a little less.

    Sorry to help muddy the waters!:p

    Whatever you decide, good luck!:) Just remember, while you are saving up, even if you think you've found <font color=green>the one</font>, keep your ears open and keep trying basses.

    I was going to get a Stingray 5, had my heart set on it, until I played a Pedulla Rapture J2 5. And found out I could get it for less than the Stingray 5.
     
  10. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Lined, and no, I doubt it. I'm generally over critical on my tone. Like I can pick up things in my tone that I don't like more than other people can.

    Voicing meaning the voicing switch, which I believe DOES change the voicing in the coils that are in your pickups.

    And no, I won't try a pedulla (refering to the other question) they are quite out of my price range. The Sterling is quite a stretch for me.
    It's gonna be my 16th birthday present. Which isn't for a while, but I've been talking to my parents about it, and we're gonna try and swing it so I can get it within 2 months.

    The bass is imaculate. I honestly like it more than a stingray by far. (not to insult the people who like stingrays) I just pefer the sterling.

    And Angus, I knew you'd say it was a good choice.
    I'm so god damn anxious to get the thing. I wanted to just like take it home right then.
     
  11. Angus

    Angus Supporting Member

    Apr 16, 2000
    Palo Alto, CA
    Voice coils are different than voicings.
     
  12. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    Intonation was Fine??
    Man.. Im pretty sure you played ALONE.
    Many people think at first that fretless was so easy!!
    And then they play with a record or with other people..
    Then.. INTONATION HELL!!!
    If your ears arent trained enough, you wont notice it alone..
    But you will when you start playing with other people..

    It happened to me at least, and several other people that have switched to fretless.
    Also, be careful with those lines.. they can be very decieving, because they are not frets, intonation will really depend on your fingers, they may flat our or sharp the actual note.
     
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Fair warning: DO NOT play a Pedulla AFTER you buy the Sterling. And the Rapture J2 or Rapture PJ are not that far out of your price range.
     
  14. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    Honestly, my intonation was fine, I don't know why but the basses neck felt perfect. My fingers just slid in the notes perfectly, I couldn't play nearly as fast as I could play a fretted, but I could play decently enough.

    I wasn't playing alone, I was playing in the middle of a store. And when I picked up other basses I noticed the "intonation hell" thing.

    But with this bass, my intonation was right on. One of the many contributing factors to why I'm in love with it.
     
  15. Glad you finally picked one! :D

    Happy Sweet 16! LOL
     
  16. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Crawlingeye, when Luis and Angus was talking about your intonation being OK when you played alone, they meant unaccompanied by other musicians, solo, etc.

    You won't notice intonation problems until you start playing along with a CD or in an ensemble.

    I caught on to fretless quickly, I had to. I played ,y Zon at church 2 days after I bought it. Before buying the Zon, I had limited experience playing my Electras-Westone 4 string fretless.

    Like I said, I caught on quickly, but even today, I still slip occasionally. Don't notive it much when playing alone.

    When accompanying piano, it is very obvious when my finger doesn't make the correct landing.
     
  17. Luis Fabara

    Luis Fabara

    Aug 13, 2000
    Ecuador (South America)
    Audio Pro - Ecuador
    I mean alone... "without another musicians for tone reference".
    But Im glad you found a good bass that aids your playing.
    I also suggest you practice your intonation with an electronic tuner and train your ears.
    Shifting positions is always a good practice because intonation goes off when moving the hand.
     
  18. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Words of wisdom.

    Shifting is when you will have the most problems.
     
  19. CrawlingEye

    CrawlingEye Member

    Mar 20, 2001
    Easton, Pennsylvania
    The "slid" was a figure of speach, you think it's a crime to use metaphores around here... sheesh.

    I know I'll have some improving to do with intonation, but it's not like horrible. I actually think it's coming along quite well.

    And the fretless sound seems to be exactly that I'm looking for.

    I admit generally while playing a fretless my intonation is quite off, but with this bass it sounds fine to me. And the people in the store had no complaints. The salesman (Who plays bass) was actually standing there listening, so I'm assuming since he wasn't laughing or anything and even suggested me to get an unmarked bass I wasn't very badly off.
     
  20. The "voicing" switch is all about picup modes on the Sterling. With the switch towards the neck the pickup is in series mode. In the middle in single coil mode (the coil nearest the bridge). Finally when set towards the bridge it is in parallel mode. All three with different sounds, as you might have guessed. I find it very useful, and I like my Sterling a lot.. but Im going to try Bartolini pickups on mine to get rid of that weak G-string problem that is present on most MM basses.

    Hope you will be happy with your Sterling. I am. :)