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MusicMan StingRay 5: not bad!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by nonsqtr, May 1, 2004.

  1. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    I'm pleasantly surprised by my buddy's StingRay. He's loaning it to me while my Roscoe's being fixed (it's getting some fret work to reseat a fret that lifted while I was traipsing around Vegas on a dry 100+ degree weekend).

    The StingRay seems to have some interesting idiosyncracies (with respect to some of the other basses I'm used to). For one thing, it has a huge midrange and treble presence, which really helps it cut through on stage. For another, it doesn't have a lot of deep bass, I'm having to bump the bass control on the amp a couple of notches (again, relative to some other basses).

    Since the StingRay seems to be a studio standard (more or less), I wanted to try recording with it while I have it, and thought I'd ask about the characteristic midrangey MusicMan sound. What do people do in the studio, do they EQ down the midrange, or leave it alone?

    Also one other tidbit, the low B seems to be a tad less bright than the other strings. Is that normal, or should I tweak the action a little (with my buddy's blessing of course)?
  2. vacman


    Mar 8, 2004
    portland, or
    yup, its a midrange monster. I hated mine at first due to the MASSIVE mids that mine has. Complicated of course by the ash body and maple neck. VERY bright. It took me almost a year to get used to it. I have not studioed this monster but I find I am tweeking my SVT to get more low end. The B is not as foucused as others I have played but seems to fit the whole mid range feel of the ray. I recently played this ray through an EBS faphner(sp) head and was really impressed. The mids seemed more compressed...
  3. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    If you want articulation on the B string on an SR5, set the pu-selector to the middle position (SC+phantom coil).

    You may then want to boost the SR5 bass control to taste and cut treble and mid controls to taste.

    With my rig preamp set flat, I have no problems with either B string articulation or having as much low end as I can stand.

    Good luck.
  4. The B string problem is more with the strings on the bass rather than the bass itself. Try some Rotosounds or DRs if you're into SS or Ernie Ball if you're into Nickels.
  5. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

  6. armybass

    armybass Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2001
    I leave my Stingray 5's set flat mostly and have no problem with it being too middy and I play many different styles of music. If I do anything, I give it just a hint of bass boost. But just past the center detent and that is it. I also leave my amps set pretty flat too.
  7. Dr. PhunkyPants

    Dr. PhunkyPants Guest

    Aug 11, 2002
    Have any of you noticed what I did when I had a Ray 5? I'd run up the G string only to have the string slip over the edge of the neck?

    For a while I was like "Whoa, that's my bad!" But I compared the distance from the G to the edge of the fingerboard on all my other basses to the distance on the EB 5, it was in fact, closer. Alas, loved the bass, the sound, the whole 9. Didn't love squeaking the G.
  8. Tumbao


    Nov 10, 2001
    A real problem with my two previous Stingray 5 basses. However, I've seen some models with more fingerboard edge spacing(G-side) than others, so maybe it's a nut issue. :meh:
  9. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Yeah, I noticed that too. It has a narrow neck. Well, ordinarily I might have said "that sucks", but my buddy insists that one not only gets used to it, but that it helps encourage a more precise playing style, so I'm gonna give him the benefit of the doubt and see how it works out.

    Other than that, I'm pleasantly surprised. The Sting Ray is a very nice bass. Not only is it eminently functional, but it's simple and easy to use as well, and that can be a big benefit in the heat of a gig. That three-way pickup switch is the absolute bomb, all three sounds are very usable. The other thing I really like about this bass is the EQ, it's a little different but it works nicely with the pickup sounds. Argh. I'm getting GAS'd up again. I might have to go get one of these for myself, 'cause I have to give this one back in a couple of weeks. :(

    One more quick question: is there an "industry standard" amp that people use with these basses? (Kind of like the P-bass-with-SVT combination?)
  10. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Yeah, I just recently picked up a SR5, and have been really pleased with it--just a real practical workhorse sort of 5 that seems to cut through well in all situations. The pickup switch was a pleasant surprise, and I'm finding that I use that rather than tweaking the EQ during the gig. As you said, three very usable sounds, easily accessible.

  11. lo-freq

    lo-freq aka UFO

    Jan 19, 2003
    DFW, Texas
    Have only used EB SS RW and DR LowRiders on mine and both give me plenty solid 'B'. [DR's more so than EB's.]


    Should work well with a wide variety of amps.
    Dem 201S -> PLX1602 -> Berg HT322 = Groovilicious!