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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by insenjury, Feb 11, 2002.

  1. hello all, does anyone in here own a Gibson or Epiphone "Thunderbird" because I looks good, i just wondered if it sounds good!
  2. Hey Insenjury, what's up? I just wanted to welcome you to Talkbass. I don't have either of those basses, but, I've heard a few of the Gibson T-Birds. They sound great, in fact many people consider them to be Gibson's best sounding bass ever made. I personally think it was the RD Artist, which looks similar to the T-Bird, but, with much more rounded edges. I'm sure someone who owns one will chime in and give you a report. I'll see you around. Good to have you here.

    Mike J.
  3. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I have a 1976 Gibson T-Bird, and it sounds great. Perfect sound for rock, the only problem with them is they are very neck heavy. I've never tried the Epiphone version, but they are made of different woods so I'm sure they sound very different. The Gibson has a Mahogany body with a mahogony "neck through", meaning the neck goes all the way through the body. The Epiphone has an alder body with a bolt on maple neck.
  4. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    My usual spiel:
    I've owned 2 Thunderbirds, and they are my favorite sounding bass. For the equivalent in an Epiphone, you need to find an Epiphone Embassy made circa mid '60s (my current and long-standing favorite player). The Embassy is slightly less neck heavy than the Thunderbird, but every bit as cool. If it's the dual humbucker sound you want, the new Fender Zone may be a close match to the Gibson.
  5. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    Here's a pic of an Epiphone Embassy...for the curious...
  6. Not far from my office is a used guitar shop, and for the last month or so they've had a non reverse one pickup Thunderbird in the gold flake finish in the window. The one pup is slightly closer to the neck than where a P-bass' pickup is. I think this is a Thunderbird II, correct?

    Also, I think the non reverse ones are fewer in number than the reverse ones. Is this right?

    Mike J.
  7. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    Correct on both points. The other difference between the reverse and the non-reverse (besides the body being reversed) is the non-reverse has a glued in neck.
  8. has anyone heard anything about the nikki sixx signature thunderbird? i really dig it's looks
  9. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
    Anyone know if any unlined fretless Tbirds were made? I've never come across one.
  10. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    I've played both. They seemed like totally different animals to me. In comparison, the Gibson version sounded very "alive" compared to the Epiphone version which sounded "anemic".

    I've always dug the Thunderbird for some reason. But, every time I'd seen one it was an Epiphone. I'd pick it up, play it in the store, and was always disappointed in the sound. Then, when I came across a Gibson at my local GC, I HAD to plug it in...lo and behold, a completely different animal! I have a renewed interest in Thunderbirds, now:D
  11. Funkster

    Funkster Supporting Member

    Apr 6, 2000
    Wormtown, MA
    Just got a 93 Gibson T-bird and man it is one sweet bird!!! I have played both and I'll tell you the Epi is a toy compared to the real deal!!
  12. Hey insenjury, welcome aboard, nice to have a fellow Scot in the lineup..:)

    On the matter at hand, i've heard (but i dont own) a Gibson T-Bird...very nice indeed. dont know alot bout them though, sorry. just thought id put my quids in. see you around
  13. Turlu

    Turlu Supporting Member

    Sep 11, 2000
    Ottawa, Ontario CANADA
    Like Showdown I own a 1976 Gibson Thunderbird. The Bass has a killer sound to my opinion. It`s fat and distinct sound makes the Bass unique and you can not beat the style. The only downside is the headstock diving problem, but you can correct that by using a Neophrene strap. I just bought a strap made by Neotech and their design helps to balance the bass better. I would love to try a Nikki Sixx Bass. The fact it has only one button does not make any difference as I always have my tone and volume all the way up anyway.

    I think it`s Gibson best sounding bass ever to my point of view. I can not live without it now.
  14. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I always keep all the controls on mine at 10 as well. The only problem with that is, the tone pot on mine froze up from never being used and no amount of spray cleaner would un-freeze it. I had to have it replaced. So now I make sure I turn them all the way in both directions every once in a while to make sure it doesn't happen again.

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