I just got my Sterling this morning, I would've posted this thread earlier, but I've been busy playing it. I literally jumped out of the shower mid-shower when the UPS guy came. It came in perfect condition. No imperfections, no blems, nothing wrong with it at all. I liked the Sterlings I tried in the store's, but now that I've played this one, it seems that they had quite a few imperfections, that I just didn't pick up on. The setup came perfect, even came in tune, which's quite a feat, since it came from Florida to Pennsylvania. I opened the box (which was soooo tightly closed) and I gave it a look, it was even better looking then I had imagined. The neck feel's great, I gave it a run down for any things that shouldn't be (scratches, dingy's, etc), like other things that might be there from someone playing it in a store. It didn't even have as much as a spec of dust on it. It has a great tone, not too in your face, but with a clear, smooth, punchy tone. I played (finger picked) with it the second I got it out of the box for about 15-20 minutes, then I jumped back in and washed the shampoo out of my hair . Came back down, and played it again, and fooled around with some slap, and fooled with the EQ a little more. This thing you CAN NOT make it sound bad. Granted, there's some EQ settings I perfer to others, but this thing's impossible to make it sound bad (even if you try!). I'm just in awe with it. I was originally worried about how it'd sound with my amp (Peavey Firebass II 700 head, Peavey 410TXF, Peavey 115BXBW), but it sounds perfect, better then the amps I tried it on in stores. The finish (incase any of you didn't hear me mention it in other threads) is white, black 3 layer pickgaurd, and the white matching headstock... I also got the maple fretboard option, which I'm glad I got. I can't see myself ever getting rid of it. I even like the matching headstock (which I originally didn't think I would). I'd like to say thanks to all the guys at Bass Central (www.basscentral.com) for being so nice, helpful, and informative with everything. I'm going to give a call up there momentarily to say thanks, so you'll probably get the call before you read this.