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Musicman Sterling - The Rodney Dangerfield of basses?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by lynott-forever, May 8, 2010.

  1. lynott-forever


    Oct 29, 2009
    Hey gang. I just picked up from the post office yesterday a Musicman Sterling 4HS that I bought out of the classifieds on TB. It's my first time playing a Musicman of any type and I have to say I really am into it. It handles like a dream. I know the Stingray gets alot of well deserved recognition, but the Sterling seems to be living in it's shadow. It deserves a little more respect IMO.

    Any thoughts?
  2. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    Love the feel, but I think they sound a little thin compared to the Stingray. That's why I got a H/S Sterling.
  3. MikeyB


    Aug 16, 2006
    Sykesville, MD
    I have a Sterling and a Stingray SLO.

    The Sterling has great tone and brings a lot of grunt, but IMO it just lacks a little in the "looks" department. Yup, I know, silly. I much prefer the look of the Stingray and the ironic thing is that most people can't tell them apart.
  4. TechJunky


    Aug 31, 2009
    Columbus, OH
    I think the Sterling's do get plenty of respect. While they may not be as popular as the Stingray, I rarely hear anything negative about them. They play great and sound fantastic. I personally prefer the Stingray because I like the wider neck and bigger body (I'm decently tall and pretty large, so the Sterling just looks awkward on me. The Stingray looks more normal and feel more comfortable), but I also wouldn't mind having the Sterling's electronics in a Stingray body, cause I love the sound of them.
  5. lynott-forever


    Oct 29, 2009
    The Stingray is definetly a beauty, like the girl that Scott Howard goes bowling with in Teen Wolf.
  6. mgauge


    Dec 21, 2009
    Chicago, IL
    I own a Stingray and a Sterling.. I love them equally. But I do admit the Sterling just fits me better....I have an H model, but Im really impressed with the HS as well....

    Im fine with just one Ray, but I wouldnt mind getting another Sterling...
  7. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    sterling is a great bass. lots of cats like the jazz profile neck vs the more p neck of the ray. also the switch (which was incorporated from the stingray 5) is fantastic. why they dont offer that on the 4 string stingray is a mystery to me.
  8. lynott-forever


    Oct 29, 2009
    I'm usually a Precision neck kind of guy (been playing P-Basses since I can remember) , but I'm really loving the profile on the Sterling. It took me a couple runs to get used to the neck, but I'm feeling it now. Different, but great.

  9. Then it would be a Sterling?????:bag:
  10. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    I want a HS fretted sterling, but for now my H sterling kills. Especially of lately.
  11. mgauge


    Dec 21, 2009
    Chicago, IL
  12. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    nope. the other big difference is the j sterling neck vs the p ray neck. the switch gives you so many tone options it's odd they wont put on a ray 4, while it's standard on a ray 5
  13. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    I had a chance to A/B a used Sterling H and a new StingRay HH at the local music store recently and was surprised to find I liked the sound of the Sterling better. But that was solo... it's how a bass sits in a band mix that really matters.
  14. mgauge


    Dec 21, 2009
    Chicago, IL
    Its wierd, Im a fan of the H, and the HS configuration on the sterling and the ray, but the HH doesnt do it for me..
  15. heytrid


    Feb 12, 2008
    Calgary AB
    I have a Sterling H and I think it is great, I do agree though that you always here about the stingray and not so much about the sterling.
  16. hotrodjohn

    hotrodjohn Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2009
    I got a stingray and 2 sterlings. The sterlings are lighter and have an extra fret. I think the ideal MM bass would be a stingray with a SLO neck that had an extra fret and sterling electronics - would be very versatile and ballsy...
  17. ausf


    Jun 24, 2008
    New York
    I'd like to play a Sterling, but I can't get used to the narrower nut. I'm more in tune with the Ray, the Sterling just seems too tight and bright. Granted, my Ray is rosewood and all the Sterlings I've tried were maples. Personal taste only, quality is there.

    I certainly respect it though, for a chick bass it's awesome (kidding).
  18. palmaruslongus


    Nov 11, 2007
    Owned both for a while, sold the Ray. Liked almost everything about the Sterling better- looks, size, sound. Liked the Stingray neck slightly better. Maybe they need a reverse SLO - sterling body with stingray neck
  19. s4001


    Feb 2, 2009
    Played two Sterlings the other day. Nice. No complaints and they delivered the classic tone, except maybe a teeny smidge less bottom.
  20. fourstringbliss

    fourstringbliss Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2003
    Puyallup, WA
    I've tried every MM bass they've got at both of the GC's I frequent and none of them holds a candle to the tone I can get out of a blue Sterling at the GC by my house. I really like how small the body is and this one has the perfect tone - now if only it wasn't $1400!

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