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Rickenbacker or Thunderbird

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BruceofBruce, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. BruceofBruce


    Feb 28, 2008
    Boston MAss!
    hey all,
    so Ive been prowling through the posts here looking for some opinions.
    and there are a lot of them.
    let me explain my situation and then I'd love to hear some advice.

    I'm playing Bass in a Stoner/Doom metal band. Sabbath, the Melvin's, Mastodon,Sleep Electric Wizard ,Orange Goblin. riffy low end stuff.

    my current set up is a GK back line 600 head and a 2 10 cab and a 15 cab.
    a boss Octave pedal and a Russian Big Muff.

    I use both sparingly and rely more on the clean sound.

    the bass I'm playing now is a Fender Areodyne Jazz.
    I got it at the right price and it's got a neck I love.
    I have smaller hands.

    I'm looking for something else.
    a deeper growl I guess.

    so I've been thinking about a different bass.
    now I'm drawn to and torn between the Gibson Thunderbird IV
    and a Rickenbacker 4003.
    problem is I can't find 2 in the same shop to compare.
    they both sound and feel great....but I'm still not sure.

    with all that in mind what do you guys think?


    Jun 30, 2008
    I'd say Ric but thunder birds are fun to.:bassist:
  3. Mr. Mig

    Mr. Mig

    Sep 7, 2008
    I like the Ric myself. It has so many options to create different sounds. I like the feel of it as well. But, if you were to get the Thunderbird then that would be good also. Still I go with the Ric.
  4. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Wow. I can't think of two options more different from each other.

    Given your current gig I would go with the Thunderbird. Ricks aren't exactly known for a lot of low-end... whereas Thunderbirds deliver the "roar". I think in the context of your band that a Thunderbird would look more at home than a Rick as well.

    Agreed that your current bass is totally wrong for that gig.
  5. BassBob185


    Oct 25, 2007
    Rocking Chair
  6. UncleFluffy


    Mar 8, 2009
    Head Tinkerer, The Flufflab
    Personally, I'd be comfortable using a 4003 in that situation, but if you're looking for something a little bit fatter you might try a 4004 - still definitely Ric look and Ric tone, but humbuckers instead of single coils.

    (Plus the 4004 is a little bit cheaper, freeing up valuable beer funds).
  7. propel


    May 10, 2007
  8. 4004 is a good option here. I think that gives you a good middle ground. I have enver been to enamored of T birds, but I can't deny the sound it there, and I am a Ric fan big time. I do agree that Humbuckers are the better pickup option for a heavier doom metal sound, but I always associated the Melvins with a ton of feedback and awful earsplitting noises, and Ric single coils can provide that racket in spades. Better get all three.
  9. RickenBoogie


    Jul 22, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    I'll +1 the 4004 option. I have both a 4003 and 4004, and until recently a Thunderbird. Of the 3, the 4004 has the most growl and bite. Very deep, yet still articulate and snappy sounding. Ric recently made of big run of them, so you should be able to find one online somewhere, but don't wait too long. I waited over 2 years for mine.
  10. UncleFluffy


    Mar 8, 2009
    Head Tinkerer, The Flufflab
    I may have posted this here before, but my standard answer when asked to describe the tone of a 4004 is "it rings like a bell made out of crunch". Very, very nice indeed.
  11. demon666


    Jul 16, 2005
    Providence RI
    Owning both I'de say you can't really go wrong with either. I play mostly the same kinda stuff now and I'm comfortable with either (or a nice P bass) If you wanna make a trek down to Providence your more then welcome to come by and check em out.
  12. bazzanderson


    Oct 7, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Owning a gibby Tbird and having owned a Ric in the past I'd say either as well. As long as you know how your eq works you'll be fine with either.....probably be boosting lows on the Ric maybe and maybe cutting lows or boosting high mids on the Tbird.
  13. I love my 4003. If it's growl you want, nothing I've found growls like a Ric.
  14. johnnycat42


    Feb 27, 2007
    Denver, CO
    Is it time for a Rickenbird?
  15. Yep. But since both stock bridges suck, we will need further outsourcing.
  16. i sold my thunderbird for a 4003, it just gets boring after a while...
  17. bazzanderson


    Oct 7, 2002
    Austin, TX
    They both TOTALLY suck. I just put one of the Hipshot Supertone bridges on my Tbird.....HUGE improvement in adjustability and a small but definite impact on the tone. (more sustain....more mids....clearer tone).
  18. CRONOS


    Jun 30, 2008
    maybe the 5 string gibson thunder studio bass like Murderface.:bassist: still pulling for Ric though.
  19. just pay the 150 bucks for a Rick TRC and bolt it on a T bird headstock. Problem solved
  20. hmm.well,practically everyone on this forum hates thunderbirds,except for me and some others.so i say thunderbird :D. i love rics and all,but the majority of the people are going to pick the ric.the thunderbird will be cheaper too.

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