Stingray 5 players please help

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by thrasher717, Jul 31, 2003.

  1. thrasher717


    Jan 17, 2003
    North Dakota
    I'm ready to move up to a 5 string (currenty playing P-bass). I've decided I want it to be a Stingray for three reasons: good reputation, good reviews, and, most importantly, they look really cool. Here's the catch -- I've never played one. I don't think I ever even heard one live. Would I be crazy to spend over $1000 on a bass I've never played? Tell me I won't regret it!

    I play in a classic/hard rock band. I like the tone and "thump" of the P-bass. Can the Stingray recreate this sound reasonably well?

    Thanks in advance for your replies.
  2. aleyman

    aleyman Guest

    Nov 1, 2002
    I actualy don't notice as much of a thump in a Stingray. You'll get lots of tone, and i suppose you could get thump, but not like a P-bass. IMO they sound like 2 complete diffrent instruments. That's just me...

    I'd say try it first, see what you think.
  3. thrasher717


    Jan 17, 2003
    North Dakota

    There are no dealers near me (I live in North Dakota for crying out loud). The only way I could try one out is if I buy mail order or online from a company with a return policy. I'm sure if I try one this way, it ain't goin' back!
  4. well, my personal feeling is that sound and playability are the most important things when looking for a new bass, followed by looks. in your situation, there's nothing you can do really but go on reviews and looks, so do it man! :) i really like them. i don't know if you do a lot of slap stuff, but if you do, you may find the string spacing a little tight (i do).
  5. marc40a


    Mar 20, 2002
    Boston MA
    I agree...

    The string spacing will be a major adjustment.

    I'd think that even an hour and a half or two hour drive to a music store w/ an SR5 in stock would be worth the trip - just to test the waters.

    A G&L 2500 would probably get you a lot closer to a P bass tone for less $$.
  6. what i was going to do back when i was thinking of buying a stingray 5 was to get an olp 5 string off ebay because they have the same spacing and scale... etc... then regardless if i liked it or not i would sell the olp and get back what i had in it or take a very small loss on it (the key here is to watch ebay for a deal)... doing this gives you greater flexibility once you have made up your mind because you can look for a better deal on ebay or from a vendor that doesnt have a great return policy... for me the sound wasnt an issue, stingray 5's sound fantastic and are very versitile but the important thing is to see how you like the overall feel of the bass before you make that big investment
  7. thrasher717


    Jan 17, 2003
    North Dakota
    So, the string spacing on Stingray is narrower than on a P-Bass?
  8. Oh yeah, much narrower.
  9. bazzhed4


    Aug 2, 2003
    Aberdeen MD
    Another thing to think about is the style of music that you play. the stingray is a much more aggressive sound than the p. the sr's have an inherent growl that is almost impossible to duplicate with other basses...especially one as smooth as a p bass. If you like the thump of a p bass but you want to go with a 5 string, i would probably go with marc40a's suggestion and go with a g&l series or maybe even a MIA deluxe jazz. I personally love my stingrays but they would be a little too aggressive sounding to play in a classic rock type band. hope this helps.
  10. 20db pad

    20db pad

    Feb 11, 2003
    I been everywhere, man...
    None. At all.
    A P Bass has a certain old school thump and midrange bump that a Stingray really can't duplicate IME. A MMSR5 has a much more modern, agressive, and present sound.

    Both are great basses that are voiced differently. One may be more appropriate for certain musical styles than the other, but no music police will come around if you play Motown on a SR5 or Nu-Metal on a P. You're the only person who can really make the call for yourself.

    The major online dealers are pretty cool about return policies as long as the axe is in "as new" condition upon return.
  11. But we are talking about the difference between a 4 and 5 string. Most 5 strings are going to be narrower (and I would say calling it much narrower is an overstatement). Few companies offer the same string spacing on 5 strings as most 4 strings have because you have to understand that in order to do that you are talking about a larger neck, and that would serious affect the balance and feel of the entire instrument. The string spacing from 4->5 took me about a week to get used to and now I find 4 strings TOO much. If you get a 5 string, ANY 5 string, I suggest you play it a lot, and only it, so you get used to it.

    As for the SR5, I own one, and it's my main bass. It offers a lot of versatility. Others call it a one trick pony, but that's a load of crap. As an active bass it has a lot of tonal variety, and that three way switch helps a lot as well. It's true it is NOT a P-bass as far as sound goes, but frankly there are few 5 string P-basses out there that are any good. The ones from Fender are crap. If you really want a more thumpy sound I would suggest you try to get one with a piezo bridge pickup on your SR5 if you can. It's an extra 400, but damn it offers a lot more. My SR can get a P bass like sound, a Jazz sound, even close to a Rick sound. I love it.

    Musicman instruments do have a distinctive sound however that some like and some don't. I love the sound. It's crisp, bright, and beautiful. Even when I have the treble down to almost zero I can get it to cut through the mix. It really is a fantastic instrument. Not for the player who wants to blend in. If you want to be the kind of bass player who is in the face of the auidience and actually showing his/her prescence in a song, the SR is great.
  12. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Supporting Member

    On the contrary. Lakland, Pedulla, MTD, Ibanez, Warwick, Modulus, Zon, Yamaha and others offer wide spaced 5 (and 6) stringers that have the same string spacing as their 4 stringers.

    If a Stingray 5 came with 19mm spacing as an option, I would own one. Or even 17.5mm spacing. The spacing on a 'Ray 5 is just too narrow, so I don't own one, and never will. They are too many good basses out there with wide spacing to own one that is so narrow that it is uncomfortable.
  13. Chuck M

    Chuck M Supporting Member

    May 2, 2000
    San Antonio, Texas
    I own fretted and fretless SR5's and have no trouble with the string spacing. I also have a Lakland 55-63 and a 55-94 which have wider necks. Which is better? I don't know.

    The MM basses are some of the best production line basses made. The fit and finish is superb. The tone works for me in a number of situations. I use them for rock, blues and jazz. They sound great.

  14. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Chuck, the Laklands are better. Anyway, The SR5 has great tone ... if you like the tone of an SR5. It's not hella versatile. Also, I hope you're young. The danged thing weighs over 10 pounds. I'm good for about one set on mine, then back to something in the 7- to 8-pound range ... a 55-94, say.
  15. Could be worse. Some of the 5 string precisions I have played have weighed like 13 or 14 pounds. I once played a Jazz bass (Fender) that must have weighed like 16. Needless to say I didn't buy it.
  16. Acepiloto


    Aug 25, 2000
    I play both an SR5 and a Lakland Skyline 55-01. When I got the Lakland after having my SR5 for about a year, I almost couldn't play it right because of the string spacing being noticably wider. But I got used to it, and I can play both with no problem. As for the tone, I'm really diggin the Lakland (it's a new toy, and the SR5 really needs a refret).
  17. Mike


    Sep 7, 2000
    Buy used. Then, if you don't like it you can sell it for the same amount of money. Nothing lost. SR's retain a pretty good resale value.
  18. CamMcIntyre


    Jun 6, 2000
    I know you said that you're in North Dakota and would have to drive a while before you could play one. So, you get to hear my story now. Ok-i live in Lafayette [near Purdue Univ] and there isn't a place in town that stocks MIA Basses let alone MIA 5 strings that are made by EBMM. Where i got lucky is that my dad lives just outside Indy and just happens to be 2-3 different retailers that sell HIGH end Fender [MIA, Artist Basses, MIA Deluxe, etc], EB MM, Warwick [i know German made], and other basses beyond what my relatively small town can offer. I advise you highly even if your car is a gas guzzler such as mine [took me $10 worth of gas to get from my house to North Side of Indy and Back-sheesh] it is worth it to be able to play one.

    My other 5 has a really wide flat neck with a wider spacing than the Ray5-i didn't mind the change but it was a noticeable change. The sound: A P-bass is to a sledgehammer what a StingRay is to a Jackhammer, i think i stole this analogy from someone on here a while back. I got the Ray5 because it had an in your face, no mud, growl tone. I also got the Maple board.

    Another brief Ray5 story. I was researching different pickups since i was tempted to get a custom bass [not naming names] that would cost me around $1100-1500. I went into this shop that had always treated me very nicely and respectfully even though i have only been playing for 3-6 years at the time [i've been there over the course of my playing history]. I saw a Ray5 and asked if i could play it since i thought that a Bart Quad Coil or a SD MM circuit in a bass would be awesome. I played the Ray5 for a good 30-45mins and then talked to their Bass guy for another good half hour or so. I went back 3 months [humor me, i'm 17-$5.50 an hour only goes so far] and ordered the bass that i now play as many as 8hrs a day.

    Conclusion: Play one, it could be the sound in your head or it might not be and Ray5 can cut very well. That's all
  19. marc40a


    Mar 20, 2002
    Boston MA
    I don't know about the whole 'one being better than the other...' thing.

    There's advantages and disadvantages to different spacings. It all comes down to the player - what a player's used to, technique, musical style, how much time one is willing to put in, etc...

    I've owned both and all I'm saying in regards to the original post is that:

    A.) It will be a major adjustment - I'm going to go so far as to say it'll be 'uncomfortable' at first. I think it'll hold true for any switch from four to five but these two models in particular are very different, physically...especially for the right hand.

    B.) Sonically - They're also going to be very different. Both very useful and capable of serious gigging but different. At the end of the day you could probably get more flexibility from the SR5. As far as being the answer to a 5 string P bass... it is not.
  20. lneal


    Apr 12, 2002
    Lee County, Alabama
    I played my SR5 for ten years; it was my main axe. I too was a little underwhelmed by it at first, mainly for the tonal stereotypes attached to it (the percieved lack of versatility). Because of this, that bass eventually became the best thing that ever happened for the development of my hands. The "one trick pony" syndrome forced me to find ways to get the sound of it to fit whatever style I was doing. That SR5 really taught me a lot about good RH technique. At the same time, because of the weight of it, that bass was responsible for a number of chiropractic visits! It is also worth noting that since I got my Modulus Q5, the SR5 hardly ever sees daylight anymore. :cool:

    So, yea. There are better basses out there as far as versatility, but none will ever be a better teacher. :bassist: