Anyone tried these? Tempted to add one to my collection.
Build quality, sound etc?
Vantage V4B is a beaut!
I am about to own that guitar, the supplier says he is confident I will want to keep it.
I have a first generation Vantage 5 string. Not sure what to say about it. The quality is not that great, but not terrible. Worse than a MIM Fender, worse than a Yamaha RBX... you buy the thing because it is Rickenbacker shaped.
On mine, the neck and bridge pickups were wired in so that they were out of (or in?) phase. This made the bass thin sounding. I rewired the bass so that I had a volume control for each pickup, a coil tap on one pot, a master tone control and a bass cut pot for the bridge pickup. Now I can get Rickenbacker, Jazz bass and Stingray tones from the bass, at a push. I need to sort out the frets (level, recrown, polish) before I'm totally happy with it.
The electronics were rubbish really. The pots are tiny (smallest I've ever seen), the soldering was amateurish with no regard for typical wiring dress and some connections were taped over with white masking tape. The one-ply white pickguard was roughly cut but functional. There was no screening paint or copper tape to be found in the cavities.
For all that it is good fun to play a bass that looks like a Rickenbacker on steroids. I have it strung with Ernie Ball flats at the moment and it lives at my girlfriend's parents' house.
Yes to be fair the basses EQ suite and associated qualities, such as cavity isolation, screening etc is not the best, but all that can be changed. I will as a rule dress and re-fit any bass i use to suit what i want.
The first thing any bass i choose to use is the look, if that fits what i want then the feel, if the bass feels good then i am in business and then everything else can be changed to suit my needs. My bass was stripped down and re-built with ease including the addition of coil taps added.
I use a Retrovibe RV4, first off i wanted a black and white Rickenbacker shape, so that measured up. Then i wanted a lightweight but balanced bass, that measured up, so the bass suited my purpose. Take into the fact the price allows me to customise and add to any value and it was a no brainer to get the bass.
Dealing with Dave, the owner of Probass who designs and distributes Retrovibes was smooth and easy, a great guy to do business with.
In the link is a video of what was done to mine, it regularly draws comments and many who try her will normally over estimate the cost of it (£365 including the custom work) as double the actual cost.
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