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SR5 and Stingray Sound

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Hofbrauhaus, Oct 22, 2003.


  1. Hofbrauhaus

    Hofbrauhaus

    Feb 10, 2002
    Upton, MA
    Hey everyone, I have a Stingray 5 that I have owned since May and while I love many of the tones I get with it and it's tonal options, I still am having trouble nailing that characteristic Stingray tone with it (or at least think I am). I feel like I nail the Stingray sound pretty well fingerstyle, but it doesn't seem to shine much when it comes to slapping. It gets a good slap sound, but not necessarily the Stingray-ish slap sound (which I think is the primary reason many of us buy Stingrays to begin with). I'm sticking with Ernie Ball strings as I really like them on this bass, and the solution may be as simple as switching from Stainless Super Slinkies to the lower gauge Extra Slinkies (what Dave LaRue uses on his MM basses). In my opinion just changing string gauge makes a huge difference in tone, although some players may disagree with me. My amp setup is a Genz-Benz XB2 cab (a 2X10) mated to a Genz-Benz GBE400 (which is putting out 330 watts into 4 ohms). The current eq is set so the lows and low mids are slightly boosted, the mid is set flat, the high-mid is slightly cut, and the highs are slightly boosted...and on the bass itself I have the switch set to parallel, bass very slightly boosted, mid set flat, and the highs boosted to about 60-70%. Sorry for the long post, but I tried to be as thorough as I could the first time around to make it easier on you guys. Who knows...maybe I have nailed the tone without even knowing it and I just need to hear the bass in a recording to know for sure. We all know it sounds different to everyone else than it does to us on stage. Let me know if you guys have any other suggestions, either relating to strings or eq settings. I'm not changing my bass or amp setup (although I will get a 4 string Stingray when the funds allow it just to be complete) :) Sorry that I'm not a sound major! Thanks in advance for your help!
     
  2. i owned a stringray 5 for a while and it was a good usable bass. the B string was very good on mine, especially for the 34" scale. i always felt that my ray5 had some of the regular stingray thing going on, but it was somewhat more polite sounding... not quite as in your face so to speak. i'm not sure what caused the difference really, and the difference was subtle. slightly different preamp possibly?
     
  3. Hofbrauhaus

    Hofbrauhaus

    Feb 10, 2002
    Upton, MA
    Hmm, I thought the SR5 had the same preamp as the Sterling since they have the same electronics. I know the SR5 has a different preamp than the Stingray, which I know will affect the tone. I'm just trying to figure out how to get as close to it as possible. I think the SR5 has the same preamp as a Sterling and I heard a recording of a Sterling that I definitely would have mistaken for a Stingray if I hadn't known. God I wish I still had that clip so you would know the exact tone I am after. Oh well...if no one here has an SR5 that has had the same problem as me then I guess I'm off on my own and just have to keep experimenting
     
  4. you would be correct sir. i believe the sterling and ray5 differ from the ray 4 though.
     
  5. Petebass

    Petebass

    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    The only thing in your setup that looks unusual is that you're running through a single 2x10 cab. I'd be looking to add a second cab so the speakers don't have to work so hard to get that stingray sound out.

    I use a graphic equaliser pedal with my Ray. I turn it off when I'm fingering, and activate it when I slap. The slap EQ has a cut in the low mids at about 200-300Hz, a slight boost at 100Hz, and a slightly bigger boost at 1-2k. That setting works well live but be warned it sucks for recording, or even just listening to it on it's own.
     
  6. hands5

    hands5

    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    none
    I've always said that the SR5 is not the type of bass that you would want for funk IMHO it is nothing like the SR4.I've changed around the pup/electronics in the SR5 a couple times and it help a little,but not much it just doesnt really sit that well in the mix like the SR4.The SR4 has a little of low mids (not much)going for it but the SR5 has none at all.
     
  7. Hofbrauhaus

    Hofbrauhaus

    Feb 10, 2002
    Upton, MA
    Hmm, I have to differ in the sense that I feel the SR5 is still an excellent funk machine, but I just still can't get it to sound extremely Stingray-ish. I mean...it has it's own voice, the way a Stingray should, but I guess the different pickup and preamp account for the different tone. I still have heard a Sterling sound almost exactly like a Stingray though, so that is where I'm still getting confused since the Sterling is essentially a 4 string SR5. Oh well, maybe I'll try boosting more low mids and high mids and see what happens, thanks for the input
     
  8. hands5

    hands5

    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    none
    If you can find any low-mids in a SR5 let me know.This is one if not the very main reason that I cant get with this bass especially since I play a lot of gosple/r&b (I also have some playability issues with it but that's a whole different issue)However It would be interesting to me to see how the SR5 would sound with the Pickup being a Alnico pup instead of ceramic wired in series instead of parallel like it is now
     
  9. Yeah, I sold my SR5 because I couldn't get the tone as growly as I wanted, and it's true that the fact that there's no neck pickup to anchor your thumb can be quite "disturbing".

    The 3-way switch on the SR5 allows you to go series, doesn't it?
     
  10. It's been almost two years since I A/B-ed a Stingray and a SR5, but I still remember that the SR5 comes very close to the generally recognised "Stingray tone," but doesn't quite nail it 100%. I remember Embellisher first pointing this out to me, and he was right.

    Naturally, the best way is to A/B the two basses side by side. If this isn't practical, listen to either of Sade's albums, "Diamond Life" or "Promise." Her bass player on these two CDs was Paul S. Denman. The guy can play, and the clarity of his Stingray is so good, I'm surprised that Ernie Ball doesn't recommend these CDs as examples to listen to for people who aren't sure what a Stingray sounds like.

    If buying her CDs isn't practical, then go here: www.sade.com It'll take a moment for the entire page to load. After it does, go to discography, click on her CD, "Diamond life", then click on the audio for any song. I think the track, "Hang On To Your Love," gives the most pronounced Stingray tone on the album.

    Then if you like, click on her CD, "Promise," and again, click on any track, but I think, "Mr. Wrong" is the best one on this album.

    The only completely acceptable solution is to buy both. I'd love an unlined fretless SR5 in honeyburst with piezos. :)

    Mmmmm...so delicious.

    Mike
     
  11. hands5

    hands5

    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    none
     
  12. hands5

    hands5

    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    none
     
  13. xJasonSmithx

    xJasonSmithx Supporting Member

    Jun 25, 2003
    Memphis, TN
    i was just thinking about posting a thread similar to this yesterday. i play an sr5. so the sr5 pu is ceramic and the sr pu is Alnico right? what is the tonal difference in those two? anyone used the basslines alnico replacement for the sr5?

    i know this should probably be in the pickups forum but this seemed easier than starting a whole new thread.

    thanks
    Jason Smith
     
  14. mgmadian

    mgmadian

    Feb 4, 2002
    Austin, TX
    The SR5 has a ceramic pickup, while the SR4 has an alinco pickup. Additionally, the two preamps are different, as has been pointed out. Hence the difference in sounds between the two basses, plus the fact that 5-string basses are generally a touch less "responsive" than 4-string basses, IMO, all things being equal.

    I'm having a Duncan Alnico pickup and Aguilar OBP-3 installed in my SR5 as we speak... I'm very curious to see how it turns out, as I'm also looking for more of a SR4 tone from my SR5. Look at some of the threads in the Pickups forum which talk about the Duncan MM pickups.

    Greg
     
  15. Guilty of putting many many miles on "Diamond Life" and "Promise" :D :D

    ... and totaly diggin Paul Denman's tone and style. :cool: Paul Denman has (for many years) been my benchmark for good groove, feel, and tone. Often when friends visit, & I happen to be in my music room, Sade is on the CD player.

    "Is that ALL you listen to?" :oops:

    "No, but you were obviously diggin it when you walked in."
     
  16. Shri

    Shri

    Feb 25, 2003
    France, Paris
    Get the bongo for the low mids and the neck pickup! :cool:
     
  17. That's golden. :cool: