The Steinberger Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by merdenoms2590, Oct 3, 2005.

  1. merdenoms2590


    Apr 30, 2005
    I saw one down in Mexico City being played at a concert. I really like the sound, and i wouldnt mind to buy one. But i dont know much about Double Ball strings. Do they sound alright? work well? does any one have feedback on Steinberger products? or other products like it.

  2. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    The strings sound fine, and no different to the same strings in guage/type/design from the same manufacturer in single ball; I have a couple of basses with string adaptors so I've tried both. The tuning on my double ball strings is incredibly stable.

    There are a number of manufacturers of double ball strings out there, incl Status, SIT, Labella, Ken Smith, GHS, Rotosound, D'Addario. You won't usually find them at your local music store, but I just mail order a few sets once or twice a year. Some of my basses have single ball adaptors which make it easier as I just use whatever I like.

    I have a Steinberger XL2, a Hohner (wood) copy and two Status basses and they all sound different. I like them all, but love the portability if the minimal body Steinberger, and don't find it an impediment to playing. I'd like a 5 string too.
  3. I personally don't own a Steinberger but I have played several in gigs and have found that there are more pros than cons with the basses. The pros include the great portability due to the small body size, this also helps with the reduced body weight that feels great after hours of playing, the tuning stability is second to none and the craftsmanship is up to standard. The cons include the sound quality. I have found that on some (mostly the newer active models) that it can be hard and sometimes frustrating to dial in certain sounds that you want. But the worse con of all is the look. I have noticed that a lot of people point, stare and snicker at the sight of them so if you're going for looks these basses are not for you. Would love to buy one someday so I can have my very own.
  4. Blazer


    Nov 27, 2003
    The Netherlands
    Rogue luthier employed at Knooren Handcrafted bass guitars
    I just bought the DVD of Genesis live at Webley 1986 and both Mike Rutherford and Daryl Streumer play Steinbergers for most of the show. Darryl plays the XL bass when holding the low end and plays a L guitar when Mike plays bass (in this case an all black Fender Jazz) and Mike plays most of the guitar stuff on a similar L guitar to Daryl's and opting to use a Griffin solid and two Roland guitar synths when other sounds are needed.

    That XL bass that Daryl Streumer employs has an impressive sound, really deep while still having good high end when it is needed.

    I can recommand that DVD to everybody, Streumer and Rutherford are stellar players.
  5. WalterBush


    Feb 27, 2005
    Yuma, Az
    My #1 go-to bass is my Steinberger XM, the "m" stands for Mike Rutherford, who asked that a guitar be made with a full-size body. The XM is the bass model, and I love it so much I'd be willing to pay very high prices for a 5-string model. The stability and playability are tops, period. This thing is the fastest neck I've ever played, and the only reason I need to tune more than once a year (no exaggeration) is because I change strings or to compensate for a piano. There are plenty of brands of double-ball strings, and although they're hard for me to find in music stores in a pinch, they're easily available online, and accessories are made for them that allow you to use single-ballers.

    I'd warn you off of buying from musicyo, and stay away from the spirit series--they have poor-quality maple necks. Go on eBay and get a pre-Gibson or barely post-Gibson Steiny if possible (i.e., made before 1993). Also, although tone is a complaint for some, I never have a problem dialing in a variety of tones. I'm told this is because of EMG's preamps. Apparently, they make a few, and several varieties are available for your Steinberger as a direct replacement. If I didn't love mine so much, I'd bother expirimenting. I'd say, go for it if you're thinking of buying.
  6. merdenoms2590


    Apr 30, 2005
    thx, i think i'll try one out here sometime and see what my opinion on it is. But thanks again
  7. Ten


    Oct 3, 2005
    I really love Steinberger basses, the synapses (sp) series is amazing. Carbon Fiber/Graphite bodies=awesome.

    Also-Didn't SB take over Hohner? I hear Hohner's quality has gone up since the purchase, as well.
  8. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    This is what you want:

    Steinberger XL2

    Accept no substitutes. The genius of the Steinberger bass is the 100% carbon fiber construction -- one piece neck-through. Other models have wood bodies or necks. They look like XL-2s, but aren't the same thing at all, IMHO. :bag: They don't have the same resonance qualities, not being 100% carbon fiber. The syanpse basses have wood bodies and necks (with a graphite core), and the XP basses have a wood body -- they were a lower priced alternative to the more expensive L series ($1100 in the 1980s was big money). They stopped making the all-carbon-fiber XL series basses in 1998.

    To me, the headless design, tuning system, small body, etc. are all just means to an end, which is a useable bass that is completely constructed of graphite, providing unmatched stability and great resonance due to its extreme stiffness/density. Making an all-graphite bass with a traditional bass shape would be technically very difficult and would result in a bass weighing at least 15-20 lbs. or more; the XL2 looks light but actually weighs about 9 lbs. Fortunately, it is perfectly balanced on the pivot plate, though I've heard heavier players complain that the pivot plate can dig in uncomfortably. :meh:

    If you like the looks, any model will do. If, on the other hand, you want to see what the big deal is about carbon fiber, and why Steinie owners love their basses so much, try an XL-2. :D
  9. A9X


    Dec 27, 2003
    Sinny, Oztraya
    Maybe you should tell Rob Green of Status that. My all carbon Series 2000 was made around 1984, weighs not a lot more than my XL2 and is so tough it was run over by a car and still plays perfectly.
  10. The Hammer

    The Hammer

    Jul 13, 2004
    I agree with Dharma if you want headless and all graphite then you should think about getting a Status Stealth. By far the best bass I have ever played.
  11. BartmanPDX

    BartmanPDX Supporting Member

    I stand corrected.

    However, if the Steinberger XL-2 were made in a full-size bass shape, it WOULD weigh 15-20 lbs. Evidently the Status basses aren't as dense, or heavy per square inch. That's probably a very good thing. I have no idea how the density of the XL-2 affects its tone compared to the Status.

    I've never played a Status, but now I'm interested! :D

    Great, now I've got MORE GAS. Thanks, guys! :( ;)
  12. The Hammer

    The Hammer

    Jul 13, 2004
    I don't know about the other Status' but mine is chambered so it makes it lighter. I agree though, judging from some of the Steinies I've played if they were a full size solid graphite bass they would be quite heavy.
  13. markorbit


    Apr 16, 2004
    Don't forget, the steinbergers are also HOLLOW. :)

  14. Pennydreadful

    Pennydreadful Goin out West

    Jun 13, 2005
    Arlington, Texas
    I'm sure Steinbergers are well-made basses, and they seem pretty innovative, but...they're the ugliest thing out there, in my opinion...