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User's opinion of stingrays

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by ras1983, Dec 28, 2004.

  1. ras1983


    Dec 28, 2004
    Sydney, Australia
    It seems that the talkbass community isn't as positive about MM stingrays as other sites, particlarly user review sites. Is this because they are greatly over rated? it looks like members of talkbass.com don't care about major and popular brand names, and infact give honest opinions of basses. its great to come across a forum where the truth about basses is told and members don't just repeat advertised rhetoric or go with the status quo.
  2. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    I think you'll find plenty of StingRay fans here - but TB is a large and diverse community, so you'll get many opinions.

    Review sites aren't the place to go for objective criticism! Don't forget some (many?) reviewers are trying to justify their purchase...

    Besides, *everybody* knows Sterlings are far superior to StingRays! ;)
  3. bovinehost

    bovinehost Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    You're asking about opinions, which are as varied as can be.

    Here's mine.

    1. TB has a fair amount of bassists who are nutso about high-end "boutique" basses, and these guys will spend 3 grand or more on a bass. Sometimes they have multiple boutique basses.

    2. TB also has a fair amount of young bassists who are not yet financially able to afford basses in the Stingray price range.

    3. The above sometimes leads to (a) a belief that mass-produced instruments are not quite up to snuff in the boutique world or (b) basses like Stingrays are overpriced and overrated.

    4. Note that I said "sometimes" so don't bother flaming me. I mean, you can, but I won't care and besides, I'm right.

    5. Luckily, there are those of us in the middle, and many people here play and love their Stingrays. And not all the boutique fans are uppity and not all the financially strapped folks see it the same way; many of them appreciate a good bass, no matter what the price point.

    6. In an online community this size (huge), you're always going to find many different opinions. Stingrays are clearly good basses, built tough and they sound great and play great and Ernie Ball has legendary customer service, but Stingrays aren't for everyone.

    7. They are for me.

    8. Now let's talk Bongos.
  4. niomosy


    Nov 9, 2002
    Stingrays are fine basses. While some may find their tone somewhat limited with the single MM pickup, others find that it gives the tones they're looking for.

    Other than my aversion to pickguards, I think that a Stingray would make a fine instrument for many bass players.

    In the end, though, the opinions of others shouldn't matter to you too much. If you like something, you like it. No worries. Hey, some TB'ers even like Wishbasses :rolleyes: :p :D
  5. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Stingrays are great instruments, but Sterlings are fantastic ;)
  6. karrot-x

    karrot-x Banned

    Feb 21, 2004
    Omicron Persei 8
    I've got a ray, at first I loved it. Then I hated it...then I realised you can use those little tone knobs and now I love it :).
  7. I agree that Stingrays aren't for everyone, but they are extremely well made, and their quality of consistency is second to none, IMHO.

    Before I settled on the 'Ray that I took home, I played about 15 over a three month period. While no two instruments are exactly alike, it's almost scary how Ernie Ball's quality control sees to it that any Stingray you pick up has a very familiar feel to it - more than any other brand I've ever tried. The same applies to Sterlings, SR5s and the two Bongos I've played.

    If Ernie Ball's basses were college students, they'd all be attending Ivy-League schools.

    A family of over-achievers they are. ;)

  8. I just dont think you can go wrong with a StingRay.
    Ive had several, and loved them all. It doesnt always take a $3,000 price tag for a bass to be a good one.
  9. well, i agree with you, TB is good for looking past the brand name, and really seeing what the bass is all about. I wouldn't say that stingrays are overrated, i think they are awesome basses, but i wouldn't mark those as the best bass money can buy. personally the sabre beats the stingray and the sterling as far as MM instruments go, but thats just me. :D

  10. lawndart


    Oct 4, 2003
    Northern NJ
    im borrowing my friends right now but im trying to save up for my own Ray. Love that tone! All my bandmates' mouths dropped when i whipped it out at practice last week.
  11. hands5


    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    it is a bass I didn't particularly care for but with that being said it was the only that I had at the time so I had to make do with what I had.It was like how a few boat owners felt about there boats.They were glad to have them,and were glad to see them go.Still one of the better of the rack bass that is out there.

    p.s.I still have a SR/5 that's buried in the closet some were.I've not played it in god knows when ! and I doubt that I will be picking it up anytime soon. :meh:
  12. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    If you dont use it, you should get it setup and then sell it to someone who would. Get money for a bass youd like :bassist: or w/e you need money for.
  13. Papersen

    Papersen Supporting Member

    Mar 22, 2002
    I also believe that they`re well established basses, based on a great reputation. Their QC is really consistant and have a "Signature Tone" that no many other basses have.

    I own a Ray 4 and love the way looks, however I still can`t find the sound I`m looking for (evidently I am the problem, not the bass). OTOH, I tried a Bongo and was highly surprised by the tone, versatility and playability.
  14. bovinehost

    bovinehost Supporting Member

    Dec 5, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Ernie Ball Music Man/Sterling By Music Man
    You know, it's amazing how much tonal difference a set of strings can make. I wasn't entirely sure way back in the late 70s that Stingrays were "my tone", but no one would have DREAMED of using flats (not my friends, anyway).

    And during the 90s, I tried another Ray, strung with flats and here I am today, happy as a pig in whatever it is that makes pigs happy to be in.
  15. I not only love Stingrays, I own three:


    As for TB, not only is it boutique-bass biased, it's also J-bass biased too :p

    As for their QC, I can vouch for that. I got to see their operation in San Luis Obispo, CA. The place is immaculate and for a mass-produced product, I think it's the best.

    Here's a web site I made of my factory tour:

    I guess my SN is a dead giveaway :)
  16. lucas vigor

    lucas vigor Banned

    Sep 2, 2004
    Orange County, Ca,
    I had a sterling for a few years, and have played the other basses they make....IMHO, the BONGO is really the only one that I was super impressed with.

    I like a more mellow, passive type tone, and none of them got that sound for me...the closest I got was when I strung my Sterling with flats, but even then, it was nothing like my Fenders, or even my Carvin!

    If I had it to do all over, I would have gotten either a BONGO, or a GL L2000...

    Having said that, these basses are all one piece bodies, built like tanks....I think you pay for the all-american quality...but sound wise, I prefer my MIM jazz bass with Fralin pickups (totall price 400 +170 =570..so compared to the 1100 to 1300 Musicmans, I really don't see much of a value for me, personally.
  17. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Great collection. Youve got a little of everything in that bunch. Very nice. Nice color choices as well. I hope on having an arsenal like that in the future. Whatever bass i decide is for me, ill want a fretted and fretless of it, definitelly.

  18. They are not overrated. They just have a unique sound, which some do not appreciate. It's also a production bass, so it doesn't grab the attention of most of the people around here. Personally, I like them. I do have a couple of complaints about them, mostly having to do with the G string. Why do I keep pulling that thing of the fingerboard?
  19. I love the looks and quality of the finishes. But the tone doesn't do it for me. It can do things other basses can't. But what it can do, I don't want.

    That said, I really like the Bongos. But the MM purists don't seem to like them as much as I do. I really think it is the PUP design that I have issues with. To my ears, it just sounds one-dimensional. But at least you can hear the MM through a loud mix.

    I think the TB community dispells the myths associated with a lot of names or models. Others, however, seem to be universally loved. But there are certain things that just have this trash/treasure quality. Some love it. Others hate it.
  20. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    I'm not a Stingray fan. Truth be told, I just don't thing they're for me. But, here's why: feel. Pure and simple. I just don't personally care for how they feel in my hands.

    Sound-wise, I think they're great! I can EASILY see why people are drawn to them. :) Construction-wise, top-notch. In the "looks" department, I'm neutral. But, in this case, it's all about how they feel in my hands.