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Rickenbacker pros/cons

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Andii Syckz, Dec 17, 2011.

  1. Andii Syckz

    Andii Syckz

    Jan 2, 2011
    I've had my share of playing copies and real deal rickenbackers and felt that some copies were better(in my humble opinion) than the real deal rickenbackers. My cons for the real things are: thin body and neck(but a jazz neck is thinner ouch), thin sounding tone(meaning for me, it wouldn't cut through the mix as much as a pbass or any other), ridiculous price(maybe not but i'm in canada so yeah 2k from the start). pros: classic look, great balance.

    I was wondering what do you real deal and copy ricenbacker lovers consider pros and cons of both kinds (real and fake)?
  2. arsie


    Jan 19, 2011
    From what I am seeing, you have said nothing but your personal preferences.
  3. Ridiculous price? Ric's run around 1600, right in the ballpark with MIA Fenders & Gibsons. Could it be you're addicted to cheapo imports and can't handle what a quality MIA instrument costs?

    BTW, Ric's have a distinctive tone, that's a problem for you? Many people GAS for the Ric sound. Buy a quality amp and a Ric can sound like whatever you want it to...
  4. Ricnroll


    Dec 30, 2010
    Vancouver, B.C.
    I love my 4001 - Pros: I love the neck profile. The bass sets up nice. Great range of tonal possibilities. Can't really think of any Cons but I do prefer the forearm contour of P's.
  5. dog1


    Dec 30, 2008
    No cons. But, I did sell my 4003. As for ILLEGAL copies? Forget about it. If it's a copy, then it's not the real thing, and no comparisons can be made
  6. Andii Syckz

    Andii Syckz

    Jan 2, 2011
    YEah but those are just my preferences, i want to know what other people think about rics and copies of them.
  7. Andii Syckz

    Andii Syckz

    Jan 2, 2011
    i've seen them for 2000$ and man i didnt like the tone even after i tried them through 5 different amps they didnt sound great to me as what i had expected at first. I wanted the real thing for almost 5 years and once i finally tried one, it was a disappointment for me but thats just my opinion on them.
  8. Around $1600 is going rate.
  9. OP is in Canada so might be higher there. But yes 1600 is what I'd expect to pay in the US, for new.

    If 1600 or in your case 2k is too much to pay, consider used. Many used go for close to that amount (resale value is a consideration, & Rics hold their value) but deals can be found, if you're patient.

    As for tone, Ric's can be made to sound Hofner-like (check out Macca's tone on Sgt Pepper) all the way to Chris Squire's uber-treble, and everything in between. I've used my (4001) for all sorts of classic rock, and it hasn't failed me yet. They take some getting used to: they are not a typical P or J, but it can be done, same as any other quality bass.

    Personally, I wouldn't waste my time or my $$$ on a fake.
    Yes, they're cheaper, but $500 spent on a fake is $500 wasted, IMO...
  10. arsie


    Jan 19, 2011

    A case if this, perhaps. It does show that price does not have a linear correlation to quality and sound. Which are in themselves preferences.

    The Ric has a specific type of pickup at a specific position, it will have that specific tone. The fact that you do not like that tone has nothing to do with the Ric or the price. You can replace the brand and the price with any other and if you do not like the tone, you still wouldn't.

    Perhaps you are disappointed, but you can also look at it as a blessing that your copy is what you want. Not having to spend $1600 to find your tone is not always a bad thing.
  11. cassius987

    cassius987 Banned

    Apr 20, 2007
    Denver, CO
    My pros: deep tone, good neck profile (not all the time), reasonable price (EBMM range).

    My cons: buying sight unseen is scary as RIC changes things sometimes, then again you can return any new purchase easily enough.

    I don't have a clue what you mean by think body and neck or thin tone. Never ran into this. As for copies, the three I have played (all Ibanez) were HORRIBLE. I have played better copies of every other bass... RIC copiers apparently don't feel compelled to try very hard at copying the functional elements like low action and working electronics.
  12. waleross


    Nov 27, 2009
    South Florida
    I bought a brand new 4003 Jetglo about a year ago and I paid top $$$ for it ($2,100 ) . Its not my everyday bass. I use Fenders. When I took the Ric into the studio for the first time I was glad I did. +1 as far as the price goes you do see them for a lot less and as instruments they are delicate you have to be careful with them. Fenders on the other hand are bass tools and can take more abuse than Ric's. IMO.......................:)
  13. TomB

    TomB Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2007
    +1 Rick's forearm contour is a con for my playing style. I'd imagine the copies have the same issue, if they're truly copies, but I've never played one.
  14. BassGen


    Mar 15, 2011
    Ontario, Canada
    What? Thin body works for me. Comfort. Thin neck? Are you serious? My J is WAY thinner.

    Thin tone? Really? I have two 4003's, and both deliver a ton of tonal choices/optioins including some nasty down low killer lows.

    Price? I paid top dollar (and probably too much) for my first one as a second hand bass.

    I got a GREAT deal on my 2nd which is a brand new MapleGlo. It's only 3 months since she was built. She is beautiful, she is balanced, she makes an amazing variety of tones and she feel s good. I think she's a bit better than the 2001 JetGlo but that is also a great guitar. The MG at least has the pull pot for the vintage tone.
  15. I love the Rick for its looks and tone and have had serious gas about them. But after playing one and the no taper neck, I knew I'd never get one. It's a work of art though. Just not for me.
  16. Andii Syckz

    Andii Syckz

    Jan 2, 2011
    When i tried a jetglo ric it looked cool, had great balance. But dude, it felt weightless. I felt like i didnt have anything in my hands. as for thin sound, for me a ric won't cut through a mix as much as a precision. I'll agree that a jazz neck is way thinner than a rics neck but i can replace the jazz neck with a precision neck. unlike rics who are set with glue. And i only wanted to know what people thought of the rickenbackers and the fakes. Cause some like fakes over the real deal cause they are chep but some like (grecoguitars) can match the look, and besides, on a fake we can change the pups to make it sound more rick ish. ;)
  17. kcole4001


    Oct 7, 2009
    Nova Scotia

    Pros: look, tone, and feel I love all three.

    Cons: bridge is awkward, no 5 string option. Both could be done but are on hold.

    I've played two copies.
    One was absolutely the worst POS I've ever picked up, at least partly from neglect, but if it was a great bass to begin with, why would it get neglected so badly?

    The other looked much better, but played just as poorly due to a broken truss rod.
    The sound was nothing like a real Rick, not even close. I own 4, I know what they sound like!

    I can see how people who don't like 'the' Rick tone would think this is better, but they always seem to forget that that signature tone is not the only tone available.

    It took me some time to find an amp that compliments my Ricks. You need a good mid EQ section to bring out the full potential.
  18. BassGen


    Mar 15, 2011
    Ontario, Canada
    Agreed that you can change the neck on a J (I have a J and a P bass in my collection) but just a point of clarity. Ric 4003's don't have a glued in neck. They are neck-through construction. I'm only saying it for clarity. Not disagreeing on your main point.
  19. Not all 4001s and 4003s are the same as each other. Various things (including neck thickness) have changed from year to year. The bass you played may just be one of those that have a thick neck that year.

    While I've never played an early 70s 4001, I've heard they have very thin necks. Additionally, your complaints don't seem to detail what you actually played other than it was a Rickenbacker bass. There are more than the 4001/4003 series as well.

    As far as weight, I'm not sure what you're on about. If it feels weightless, I'd think that was desirable not a con. They typically weigh 8-9 lbs.

    If you're used to carrying something in the 16 lb range, I'm sure it seems weightless but that's not the bass' fault. That is you and your expectations.
  20. I have a hard time believing that you've played a real ric and somehow prefer the MIC copies. That's like saying you like Amstel Light but prefer yellow food dye in warm water.

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