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Weak signal on Music Man Sterling Ray 34 D and G strings

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Swampish, Mar 19, 2018.


  1. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    I recently bought a Music Man Sterling Ray 34 which I love! The tone is out of this world and it has a growl that just won't quit! However, I've been noticing much weaker signal/output from the D and G strings. I play about midway between the neck and the p/up. In fact, if anything, my fingers are a notch closer to the pup when I play the D and G. Now, I've had this experience with my P-bass, but it just seems more pronounced with the Sterling. The string are heavy gauge and quite new, as well, as a new battery. Any ideas, explanations, remedies?
     
  2. BlacknWhite

    BlacknWhite Supporting Member

    I bought a '78 Music Man Stingray and when I first got it the set up was bad and my D and G strings were much louder than the E and A. I adjusted the truss rod to straighten the neck and then gave it just a little relief. Set the string height and pick up height and good to go.
     
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  3. btmpancake

    btmpancake Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    Apollo beach, Florida
    Can you, did you try to adjust the height of the magnetic pole pick-up pieces under the d and g strings? EDIT- raising or lowering the d-g side of that pup?
     
    Swampish likes this.
  4. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    I haven't played with the pup height, but I've actually done that with a couple of my Fender's in the past and it definitely helped. So I might give that a shot. Just wasn't sure if that was something others had encountered as well.
    I always thought that hybrid string sets would be interesting if they lowered the E and A gauge, and upped the D and G gauge to provide a more balanced attack, though I'm sure greater minds than mine (pretty much everybody else) have determined that that doesn't work. Thanks for the suggestion!
     
    btmpancake likes this.
  5. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Makes complete sense, except that I just had a set up done and I'm really hesitant to play with the string height as the action is really sweet right now. I think I'll give the btm suggestion a shot so that I don't bugger up my intonations or action. Thanks for the suggestion, but it's weird that your E and A were weaker, with those heavier strings, it's hard to image the thinner ones having higher output. I guess there's a lot of variables at work.
     
  6. btmpancake

    btmpancake Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    Apollo beach, Florida
    Just out of curiosity, I wonder if a balanced set of strings would help string volume output be more equal?
    I don't have any issues and read somewhere about a 'balance set of strings'... it was just a thought if everything else fails, good-luck.
     
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  7. BlacknWhite

    BlacknWhite Supporting Member

    The previous owner had the Pick up height way too high on the high strings and the height on the low strings were almost level with the body. Action was pretty high as well. If yours is already set up raising the PUP height on the low side will probably work. Or lowering the height on the high strings depending on what your heights are already. Let us know. Great bass!
     
    Swampish likes this.
  8. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    EXACTLY! That's what I was saying before! It just feels that there is such a drop of in string gauge when you go to the D and G that you would expect a bit of a drop in signal strength. Mind you, like you, many of my other basses don't have an issue. In fact, I just picked up a 2002 MIM Fender Jazz (swapped out the white pickguard for tort, which looks awesome and am waiting for a Fender Hi Mass Badass-style bridge-can't wait) and the output is pretty consistent across the board. Maybe the active electronics in the Sterling have something to do with it.
     
    btmpancake likes this.
  9. btmpancake

    btmpancake Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    Apollo beach, Florida
    I hope you isolate what the issue is because the Ray34ca was on my wishlist but my understanding is they are discontinued, so my next choice is the ray34. I believe they have a forum on the Sterling Ray34or maybe the Sterling basses,not sure. I'm going to research this and see; I believe an ex-V.P. or CEO would chime in from time to time on TB.
     
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  10. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    For what it's worth and despite the bit of tweaking I need to do with regard to the D and G issue, I love the bass! There are times when I haven't played in a bit and when I get back on it, it's like Christmas! The sound is so aggressive and lively and you can do SO much by simply using the on-board controls. Here's a pretty good TB thread on the subject comparing the two.
    Sterling Ray34 vs Ray34ca
     
    btmpancake likes this.
  11. btmpancake

    btmpancake Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    Apollo beach, Florida
    Hey thanks for the link! It has refueled my gas.
     
    Swampish likes this.

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