Giving Up on the Epiphone Rippers

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Greevus, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. Greevus


    Apr 15, 2009
    I have both models, '97 and '06, and have replaced pickups in both multiple times. I cannot get these two basses to sound good at all. I know they are not Gibson originals, but they have bassically turned me off on trying them. The latest configuration I tried was EMG P/J in the '97 model, and it did give it more punch and brightness. However, the thing still lacks richness and makes a "doink" sort of farty note. It has gone from mushy "woof" to farty "doink". I was a huge Gene Simmons fan growing up, and seeing people like Krist Novoselic and Mike Dirnt playing them got me stoked to try them. Now I am thinking of trading/selling cause I'm realizing the Rippers just ain't me or my sound. I love the looks and feel of it in my hands, but that's it. It is just like the Rickenbacker for me....
  2. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    Damn!!!! I just bought a bass... and if I didn't I'd be making you a offer!

    If you ever wanna give one away for free... contact me first!
  3. I think you are potentially opening a huge can of worms here, but I will say this. Sounds to me like you have given these basses more than a fair shake and don't like them. there is absolutely no excuse for playing a bass you hate.
  4. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    Well, my Gibson Ripper didn't Woof or Doink, it was just sort of a rich lower mid-range sound, so it seems that the REALLY cut the quality or changed the engineering of the pickups. Sorry to hear it.

    If you don't like it, don't keep it. I had a GORGEOUS Ibanez EFM-1000 that was the best feeling and playing bass I have ever touched, but I couldn't get a sound out of it I liked no matter what I did and how many strings I tried. It was so beautiful, it was hard to consider selling, but I put it away in the case and sort of stopped thinking about it, and then put it up for sale without looking at it again.
  5. Thorsoundcore

    Thorsoundcore Supporting Member

    Jan 22, 2009
    ^why don't you just try and find a real gibson ripper??
    they're probably miles better than both of your epis.
  6. Greevus


    Apr 15, 2009
    I've thought about getting a real Ripper. I was very excited when I got the Epis due to the gibsonbass site. A few vet Gib players on there really thought the Epis were maybe better than the vintage Rippers. However, I am coming from a P style background and converting to Gibsons just hasn't worked out very well for me. I have a Victory bass also, and it just doesn't sound right either. Feels great, but sound is just wrong. I have learned that getting a bass that feels & sounds good is the way to go. Feeling the right tones just gives you so much more confidence and ease. It sucks, cause I really wante do like the Ripper or Gripper by Epiphone. I didn't get along with my Ric either and it killed me too. I'm just happier with the Fenderish guitars no matter how I go about it. Tried all sorts and keep coming back to them.
  7. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Same thing for me with Ricks. I've owned 6 nice Ricky basses, just trying to like them, but I always end up trading or selling them. Sometimes a bass just doesn't work for you.
  8. Greevus


    Apr 15, 2009
    Amen brother. I still think Rics and Rippers are the coolest looking basses out there. Both are just unique birds that you have to get used to. A common thing I notice is that all the guys who love Rippers always say they got rid of them and wish they had them back. I don't get it. How come they didn't keep playing them? I think Gene Simmons sounds great on "Dressed to Kill", my fave Kiss LP. It is just a thumpier ton that works with their guitars. I've always played with Metallica styled guitar players and the Rippers can't hang to me. I tried the Ric back in the mid '90s and it couldn't cut it either. I'm just gonna go with my Steve Harris, Geezer Butler, Phil Lynott influence and stick with the Fender type sounds. It just cuts and sounds nice n thick and spongy for me.
  9. Chuck King

    Chuck King Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2006
    Comparing Epiphone to Gibson Rippers is apples to oranges, not necessarily because of any inherent quality issues (although, I haven't played an Epi so I don't really know what they feel like or how they're built) but because they have very different pickups. Epis IIRC have Fender-style pickups; Gibsons had some pretty unusual and unique humbuckers, and then they were wired up in some atypical ways with that four-position selector switch. And, my Gibson Ripper has a beefy neck that's not like anything else I've played---again, I don't know personally about the Epis, but I strongly suspect their necks were not the same. And I believe at least some of the Epis were bolt-ons; the Gibsons have set necks. (Some Grabbers had bolt-on necks, but I don't think I've ever seen a bolt-neck Ripper.)

    If you like the way the Ripper body feels and looks but are unsatisfield with the tone, then an old Gibson might be worth checking out. They have a sound all their own---which is not for everybody, but with the right amp and EQ they can get a really great, punchy, thick tone that's great for rock.
  10. lbanks


    Jul 17, 2003
    Ennui, IN USA
    Yeah, the Epi Ripper are nothing like the Gibson Ripper.
  11. LowNotes1


    Jun 8, 2008
    I used to own a Gibson Ripper I bought new in 1975, plus two Rickenbacker 4001's. I currently own an EPI LE Ripper P/J. I've owned multiple Fender P's and J's. I think it boils down to this - if you want a nice thud from your bass that punches people in the gut, don't get an Epi Ripper or a Ric. I personally like them for a number of reasons, but with stock equipment and a simple amp, they're just going to have a more mid-range sound, and are better suited to playing with a pick IMO. I think the Epi LE Ripper and a Rick sound similar in some ways.

    If you want an Epi with some punch for cheap, try their T-Birds for $300 new; I have one and it has a lot of bottom for the price.