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#1
I took everyone's usual recommendations and took my 7th grade son down to GC to find out what he liked to play.

Just as a matter of background, he has been playing acoustic stand-up bass for four years and last Christmas I bought him an inexpensive Washburn electric bass. In the last year he has become pretty good and his teacher has recommended he upgrade his bass to a 5-string. He told us to look at Warwicks, specifically the Streamer II. (I know it's expensive but I think he will play for a long time.)

Anyways, after out visit to GC they did not have a Streamer II in stock but he did play a Warwick Double Buck and a Music Man Stringray 5 and liked both of these. I tried to get him to like a Fender P bass but he did not like that or any of the other ones he played.

Since I do not know basses, curious about any thoughts about the StringRay and Double Buck.

Thanks in advance!
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#2
the stingray is a very good bass, i assume hes not a metal bassist and this is the case, the stingray would be great. I have played the 4 string and it is a really high quality instrument. As for the warwick i do not have any experience with it but warwicks are usually really good so either of those would be a good choice i imagine
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#4
Both of the ones he played are solid basses.

As far as Warwicks go, I prefer the standard to the double bucks, as I don't feel that humbuckers work that well with the 'Warwick tone'. That said, it's still good, if not an example of classic Warwick tone.

The stingray is one of legendary basses, that has been out for a long time, and has bucketloads of advocates. If he tries it a few more times and still likes it, it won't be a bad choice by any means.
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#6
I played a stingray bass once and they are a really nice smooth bass. They are good for a lot of genres too. I've only played a 4-string version but I can't imagine them being too different (except the 5-string of course :-)) Good luck deciding anyway let us know what you get...wish my dad would buy me a stingray!!!!
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#7
stale mate for for stingray and warwick! just got with a dean stilleto
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#8
Fender Jazz 24V. I love it and want to get one ASAP. Great active electronics on it, 24 frets and the versatility of a jazz bass. Plus you can get one for about $750 at GC last I saw (that was about 6 months ago, so it might be less now). The best thing you can do is let him test as many as he can and get him the one both he, and your wallet like best.

But if he doesn't like it, I would definitely go with the the Stingray. I love those almost as much as the Jazz 24V.
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Last edited by Flummery at Dec 13, 2008,
#10
Both basses would be great choices. The build quality of each is superb and the electronics are solid. They do, however, have two very different tones. Personally, I had to make this very same decision not to long ago (not a bad position to be in), and I went with the Warwick. I found the neck more comfortable on the Wick and I believe the bass to be more versatile. Basically, for me, it came down to the fact that I could get very close to the Stingray's tone with the $$, but there were quite a few sounds that I could get out of the Wick that the Stingray just couldn't produce. That being said, there is something about Stingrays that is amazingly compelling to me and I will probably end up buying one in the not too distant future. Just take your son back down there and ask him what his favorite is. They have very different feels.tones, so there must be one that he is more comfortable with. I don't know what else to tell you. If you have any specific questions about the $$, feel free to PM me. You really can't go wrong either way.

Quote by imnotinsane
stale mate for for stingray and warwick! just got with a dean stilleto


Please tell me you meant Schecter. And for the pricerange he's in, if he was gonna go Schecter, he'd be better off with a Studio (great basses by the way).
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Last edited by Beast_Within at Dec 13, 2008,
#11
both are good basses like people here have said. i would also look at traben
#12
Either of those would be an excellent choice. Both are going to be pretty growly. The Warwick is going to have more of a modern sound to it, than the Stringray. I personall would go with the Stringray.

There both great. Both should last indefinitely.

There are also alot of other great brands out there as well, Sandberg, Lakland, Spector, if your willing to spend a $1000+, try out everything, even if it you have to make a trip somewhere. God forbid you by him a Musicman and 6 months from now decides that it's a nice bass but not really for him.
Last edited by Captain Insano at Dec 13, 2008,
#13
BTW, he does not play metal (or not that I know of!) Plays a mix of classic and newer rock.
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#15
Quote by froggyman
You mean a Schecter Stilleto?

Dean basses should be avoided...they really only do well with metal

Not even that, really. They may have the looks for it, but their tone is usually garbage.
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#16
Out of the two original options, the Stringray is a little better quality, and most people prefer the Stringrays. I personally don't see what's so appealling about them, but you know, must be something about them if so many people like them.
#17
What about his amp??? If he's planning on playing shows in the next couple of years, his amp is going to need an upgrade. Don't spend big buck on a bass, because soon, you're going to be spending big buck on an amp. And a nice bass isn't truly a nice bass until you have the amp to compliment.

As far as the two are concerned, the Stingray has a very limited sound tonally. There's not much versatility. The Warwick isn't much better, but at least you can do a tiny bit more.

They are both high end basses, and you couldn't go wrong with either of them. It's just a matter of personal opinion, which will change between 17 and 25. I don't know if you're a musician as well, but we all get "Gear Acquisition Syndrome" at one point in time. Your son will most likely end up buying another bass within the next 10 years. Especially if he's got a Warwick or a Stingray. Maybe he'll want a fretless, or a Fender. He'll expand his music interests and explore more styles and want a new tone or a new amp.

Seriously consider buying a $500-$1000 bass and a new amp, instead of forking over $1500+ for a new bass. He's not going to be able to play with a drummer, for instance, without a big enough amplifier.


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#19
@ original poster

I wish i was your son

Also the streamer stageII and the stingray would both be pretty solid choices. having only every played the stingray i'd go for that personally but the warwicks are meant to be awesome to.
#21
Quote by FbSa
Out of the two original options, the Stringray is a little better quality, and most people prefer the Stringrays. I personally don't see what's so appealling about them, but you know, must be something about them if so many people like them.

How so? Build or electronics? Anything to back up the arguement?
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#22
Get him to play evreything, we are not your son. I would get the stingray personnally, i hated the double buck when i played it. Get him to play some fenders laklands and G&L's as well. What ever floats his boat. Also look into some good amplification, a nice little combo will do wonders for his tone.
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#23
Quote by Beast_Within
How so? Build or electronics? Anything to back up the arguement?

I wouldn't have said there is much in it personally, they're both very high quality, though the musicman represents better quality for your money, plus warwicks have a tendency to crap up over time sometimes, warped necks, the jack sockets go quite frequently, the nuts can be a bit of a bugger sometimes too. Also from personal experience, musicman basses tend to have a fatter growlier sound to warwicks, though that's all subjective. Plus isn't the musicman like $1000 less or something?

Honestly though, and i will ALWAYS say this, try before you buy, especially with brand new basses with high price tags. If he gets something sight unseen brand new and doesn't like it, you will lose a lot of money on the resale. Take him round as many guitar shops as you can find in the area and get him to try every 5 string you find. (though it's important for him to have one he thinks looks nice too, looks mean a lot, even if they shouldn't), but at the end of the day, nobody can tell you what your son may or may not find comfortable or may or may not like the sound of. It's all about trying things. I've been round and tried things before, and basses i would have initially dismissed have really impressed me.
Last edited by budget bassist at Dec 13, 2008,
#24
Quote by budget bassist
I wouldn't have said there is much in it personally, they're both very high quality, though the musicman represents better quality for your money, plus warwicks have a tendency to crap up over time sometimes, warped necks, the jack sockets go quite frequently, the nuts can be a bit of a bugger sometimes too. Also from personal experience, musicman basses tend to have a fatter growlier sound to warwicks, though that's all subjective. Plus isn't the musicman like $1000 less or something?

Honestly though, and i will ALWAYS say this, try before you buy, especially with brand new basses with high price tags. If he gets something sight unseen brand new and doesn't like it, you will lose a lot of money on the resale. Take him round as many guitar shops as you can find in the area and get him to try every 5 string you find. (though it's important for him to have one he thinks looks nice too, looks mean a lot, even if they shouldn't), but at the end of the day, nobody can tell you what your son may or may not find comfortable or may or may not like the sound of. It's all about trying things. I've been round and tried things before, and basses i would have initially dismissed have really impressed me.

I haven't experienced this (warped necks, issues with jack) with any of my Wicks (which range from 10 years old to 4 years old and were all bought used) and my oldest is approaching ten years of pretty constant play (not all by me, but previous owners as well). I understand what you mean about the JANII though. It was not a great design for the nut if the owner is not careful with the bass (you really do have to be pretty rough/careless with it to break it), and has since been upgraded to the JANIII (which eliminates the previous "frailty" problem). As far as price goes, the difference is only $400 USD if you are buying new (which I would never do). To the second paragraph, +1.
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#25
Quote by budget bassist
I wouldn't have said there is much in it personally, they're both very high quality, though the musicman represents better quality for your money, plus warwicks have a tendency to crap up over time sometimes, warped necks, the jack sockets go quite frequently, the nuts can be a bit of a bugger sometimes too. Also from personal experience, musicman basses tend to have a fatter growlier sound to warwicks, though that's all subjective. Plus isn't the musicman like $1000 less or something?


Since when were Warwicks known for being faulty? The only problem they've ever has was the JANII, which as said before, was quickly phased out. Everything else I have experienced and heard is that they are very well built.

And Warwicks are very growly basses. It is a different kind of growl to a musicman, but is very distinctive.
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#26
Quote by Incubus_SCIENCE
What about his amp???


His birthday is January so I was going to get him a new amp then.
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#27
What is the primary difference of the three different Stingray models and which would be better for his needs?
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#28
Quote by jcoley2
What is the primary difference of the three different Stingray models and which would be better for his needs?

You mean the three current Musicman bass models, the stingray, the Sterling, and the Bongo? Or do you mean the three different Musicman (stock) pickup configurations, the H, the HH, and the HS?

If you meant the bass models, then the Stingray and Sterling are both very growly, though the Stingray has more of a P-Bass feel to the neck (thicker/chunkier) and is heavier overall, while the Sterling is lighter and has more of a J-Bass feel to the neck (thinner). The Bongo is somewhat of a tonal chameleon (very versatile) and is a very light bass (due to the use of Basswood), but does not have a toothpick-thin neck.

As for the pickup configurations, The H is a the classic single humbucker. Not very versatile, but a great tone for many different types of music (won't fit in too well is a jazz ensemble though). The HH is the double-humbucker configuration, with one at the neck and one at the bridge. Adds a little versatility, but in my opinions still quite similar to the H configuration. Finally, the HS is the single-humbucker (at the bridge), single-jazz pickup (at the neck) configuration. This is more versatile and IMO the best of the bunch. Some Musicman basses also offer Piezo pickups in the bridge. I can't accurately describe the tonal advantages of these so you will have to try them out yourself. Personally, I like them quite a bit on the H models.

Anyway, I know that was jumbled and vague, but you get the basic idea.
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#29
Quote by Beast_Within
You mean the three current Musicman bass models, the stingray, the Sterling, and the Bongo? Or do you mean the three different Musicman (stock) pickup configurations, the H, the HH, and the HS?


Beast: That was an excellent overview. I meant the differences in the three Stingray 5 models so that was helpful.
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#30
Quote by Beast_Within
The HH is the double-humbucker configuration, with one at the neck and one at the bridge. Adds a little versatility, but in my opinions still quite similar to the H configuration. Finally, the HS is the single-humbucker (at the bridge), single-jazz pickup (at the neck) configuration. This is more versatile and IMO the best of the bunch. Some Musicman basses also offer Piezo pickups in the bridge. I can't accurately describe the tonal advantages of these so you will have to try them out yourself. Personally, I like them quite a bit on the H models.


His teacher just let him borrow a HH model for his first recital/gig today with some older kids and he seems to really like it. I will him also try the HS model.
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#32
I think the HS is the way to go, as you'll get much more of a tonal spread than HH. IMO humbuckers sound like humbuckers all the time, but you can get more tonal variance from a single coil. However, if you're really into the Ernie Ball stuff, I'd go for a Bongo. He may or may not like the look, but you can blend the pickups (on Stingrays there's only a switch) and it has a 4-band EQ which'll come in handy down the line.

May I also recommend Fender American or American Deluxe series instruments. Jazzes and Precisions come in 5-strings in the Standard series, and I own an American Deluxe Jazz 5-er, and think it's a better bass at a cheaper price. Fenders have graphite reinforced necks that make the world of difference, especially in this recent change in seasons.

However, if you were considering a $5200 Streamer Stage II, you're clearly looking for something big and forever. I'd drive to the biggest GC/Sam Ash within 2 hours, and get him to try EVERYTHING out. Keep an eye out for the things we've mentioned, but HE has to like it. In my opinion, at that price level, if it's not made in the States or Germany, it's not worth looking at. And I've not seen an Asian made bass that's better than an American/German one, period.

Some may argue you're getting more of a value with Japanese/Korean instruments, but a $1000 USA/German bass plays better than a $500 Asian bass, even if that Asian bass plays like a $700 American bass.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#33
Quote by thefitz
However, if you were considering a $5200 Streamer Stage II, you're clearly looking for something big and forever.


I have seen Streamer II's on eBay fro for less. . . should I ben concerned or are there more than one type of II's?
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#34
Yeah, 4 string, 5 string, and the P-Nut signature. The P-nut is about double the price of the first two. But yeah, I saw a used one for $2500 at a music store around here. But the Stage II is the subtype - there are several types of Streamers, yes, but a Stage II is a model. Top of the line, mind you.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#35
Quote by gm jack
Since when were Warwicks known for being faulty? The only problem they've ever has was the JANII, which as said before, was quickly phased out. Everything else I have experienced and heard is that they are very well built.

And Warwicks are very growly basses. It is a different kind of growl to a musicman, but is very distinctive.

Must just be a few horror stories i've heard then, but the same thing with the necks CAN happen to a musicman too, i have heard of this issue on both basses (and seen pictures) though it's fairly uncommon.

As for the jacks, i've found barrel jacks in general to be pretty unreliable. In both basses i've had with barrel jacks, they've both been faulty at some point (the jack specifically), and i've heard it happens on warwicks quite a lot too.

As for the growl thing, you're right, but on the warwicks i've tried, i didn't find it to be as distinctive as the musicmans i've owned/played. But i'm a musicman nut through and through. I'd love a nice warwick one day though
#36
Warwick necks have steel reinforcement rods in them. The warping claim is bogus.
Quote by Cody_Grey102
I was looking at a used Warwick Vampyre LTD 5'er for about $200. I went home to grab my wallet and came back and some jerk with an epic beard got it already..
#37
STINGRAY 5 ehs God
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#38
Quote by froggyman
Stringrays are amazing....cant give you an opinion on the warwick..though personally i think they are ugly


I, too think warwicks are ugly. I'd still buy one though, they play amazing.
#39
you have one lucky son,, and try a bongo
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#40
Quote by thefitz
And I've not seen an Asian made bass that's better than an American/German one, period.

Some may argue you're getting more of a value with Japanese/Korean instruments, but a $1000 USA/German bass plays better than a $500 Asian bass, even if that Asian bass plays like a $700 American bass.

Give Japan some credit, Fitzy. They make some basses that are easily as nice as (if not nicer than) American Fenders and German Warwicks. Go play a few Bacchus and Moon basses and then see if your opinion isn't altered somewhat. And since when does Japan make budget/cheap instruments? I have a feeling that the only thing you're basing that on is your experience with budget Ibanez basses (which are usually manufactured in Korea). True MIJ Ibanez basses (at least the old ones) are beautiful/solid instruments and they are far from cheap. Japan may be an asian nation, but it is not to lumped in with Korea/China/Indonesia in terms of instrument production
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