Thunderbird vs Rickenbacker again..

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rolorocknerd, Dec 3, 2022.

  1. rolorocknerd


    Sep 17, 2008
    Torn between a Thunderbird or a Rick. I have primarily Fender bass player and ready to try a new flavor. Been leaving heavy on a thunderbird.. I play a lot of pop rock and jam band style music.
    Talk me into either and thank you in advance...
    (Disclaimer I will probably get both someday, just wanting to hear feedback on people's experiences)
  2. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    If you have the disposable cash, I'd get the Rickenbacker. Then down the line, I'd pick up an Epiphone Thunderbird.
  3. bobyoung53

    bobyoung53 Supporting Member

    Both......of course.
    kentiki, secretsound5, Border and 7 others like this.
  4. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    The Ric is more different than the Thunderbird, if you're coming from Fenderland. I'd go there first, if I were you.
  5. msb


    Jul 3, 2002
    Halifax,N,S. Canada
    Can’t lose with either.
  6. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups
    Were I buying a first Thunderbird I'd suggest the Epiphone '60s Thunderbird, sometimes called a Vintage Pro, wonderful neck and a great set of pickups. I love Ricks too, so a difficult choice, good luck :)
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2022
  7. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Tough call. Which neck feels better to you? They’re both unique and cool. What style to you play?
  8. godofthunder59

    godofthunder59 Life is short, buy the bass. Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    Rochester NY USA
    Endorsing Cataldo Basses, Whirlwind products, Thunderbucker pickups
    Both classic basses and do different thing. For a first time Thunderbird buyer I suggest the new 2021 Nonreverse Thunderbird or The Epiphone Vintage Pro now called the 60s Thunderbird. The new Rics are really great, I have a 2018 4003s and it's easily one of the best Rics I've ever had and I've had everything from a 68 4001 to a V63 and C64 and many in between.
  9. ProbablyTooLoud


    Aug 1, 2020
    Man that Rickenbacker bridge pickup can just sizzle like no other.
    corndog, DTRN, red_rhino and 2 others like this.
  10. satantango


    Nov 29, 2022
    and if you like the way those sound, the Epiphone Embassy has the exact same pickups and sounds like 95% the same in a much lighter and somewhat more ergonomic design. But yeah what the one poster said, if you've got the money, get a Ric and get an Epiphone TB later on. Epiphone are making the vintage voiced TBs out there today (unless Gibson has an offering I'm not aware of), and that's the sound I want anyway.
    BassToGoGo and rolorocknerd like this.
  11. PrinceByTor


    May 25, 2019
    Spokane, Wa
    How about a Fenderbird, similar, yet different.
  12. rolorocknerd


    Sep 17, 2008
    I play a lot of pop rock. Pearl jam, too fighters, 90's 4/4 rock.
    Killing Floor likes this.
  13. rolorocknerd


    Sep 17, 2008
    I played a Rick and loved the neck. I don't have access to tbird but everything I have read and researched online just seems like me all the way. I'm also a fairly tall guy and the size is cool.
  14. godofthunder59

    godofthunder59 Life is short, buy the bass. Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    Rochester NY USA
    Endorsing Cataldo Basses, Whirlwind products, Thunderbucker pickups
    Undoubtedly being tall helps.
    Border, rolorocknerd and TBird1958 like this.
  15. Koshchei


    Mar 17, 2019
    Peterborough, ON
    Ric all the way. A Thunderbird is a great instrument and has its own thing going, but nothing sounds like a Ric but a Ric. Or looks like one. Or plays like one, to be totally honest.
  16. "What should I eat, fish or cheese?".

    They are both food.
    Kink Rimson and Dasgre0g like this.
  17. SlowpokeJoe

    SlowpokeJoe Supporting Member

    Do NOT buy a Thunderbird without playing one first.

    The ergonomics are "unique" to put it one way, and they feel very very different from a Ric / Fender shaped bass.
    Bobbadfinger, jastacey, REV and 5 others like this.
  18. Ric.
    red_rhino and rolorocknerd like this.
  19. PennyroyalWe


    Sep 2, 2018
    Can’t really comment except to say the few Thunderbirds I’ve played all had crazy neck dive. Frankly all Gibson basses I’ve played have. Something you might want to consider when choosing.
  20. facetsquared


    Aug 8, 2022
    A Ric with DR Lo-Rider strings = an A1 sound for rock. Taut and aggressive.
    devnulljp, eriky4003 and rolorocknerd like this.