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Rating and Reviews: Rickenbacker 4003 Bass

The Rickenbacker 4003 bass is a classic that still sets the pace today. The 4003 is known for its ringing sustain, treble punch and solid underlying bass.

User Ratings
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Sound
Features
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Quality
Value
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The Wow Factor
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"Ric is the way to go!" submitted May 15, 2004

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Features
Value
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Music Style: proggressive rock, metal, funk
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: Incredibly punchy and growly at the same time. Mid range is incredible. It plays a hundred different variations of the signature Ric sound, from soft and bass-y to very sharp and crisp. The only problem is that these are all variations of the same basic sound, so if you want something incredibly versatile this isn't it. But if you even remotely like the Ric sound at all, this bass is perfect! Even through my old cheap Squire amp it sounded great, and through my brand new Fender Bassman amp is sounds positively heavenly. Feature: The Ric comes with a hardshell case (great if you, like myself, cannot afford to shell out another $100 for a case) that is of incredibly good quality. I love the switch joystick (like they have on Gibson guitars) that switches between bridge, neck, and both pickups. It is conveniently placed and effortless to use, so you can switch the sound completely in a split second and keep on playing. Also, the stereo output isn't particularly useful, per se, but it is incredibly cool. It's so cool when the pickups sound like they are on opposite ends of the room! The bridge is beautiful, but slightly outdated, though I happen to personally like the string mutes that are built into it. Neck-through construction is lovely, ergonomic, and gives sustain like no other. The adjustable pickups are very easy to use and they make a world of difference in the sound depending on their height and slant. The only truly useless thing is the bridge pickup cover. It looks really cool, but it gets in the way of playing and should definitely be removed. Quality: No blemishes, scratches, paint or part defects, or anything. It was perfect and beautiful when I bought it. I've heard people complain about poor truss rod setup and horribly warped necks, but every single Ric I've ever played in a store (including the one that I bought) has not had a single one of these problems. The bass is very reliable, though it is almost too beautiful, and sometimes I feel as though I shouldn't play it too hard or I might damage the finish, even though the bass is incredibly durable. It's just me being OC. But as for actual playability, you can play it as hard as you want for hours and nothing will break or go wrong. Value: It is an absolute steal for the amount that it usually sells for. Basses that are only slightly better cost hundreds more. Manufacturer Support: I haven't had to deal with anyone except the people at the store I bought it from, all of whom were friendly and helped me with everything I had questions about. The Wow Factor: Though it was a practical addition to my music-making setup, I seriously had dreams and fantasies about this bass. It haunted me. It was pretty much the epitome of everything I wanted and desired in a bass guitar. I wanted one before I'd even ever played it, and even if it had been the most difficult and worst quality bass ever, I still might have bought it. I've gotten comments from tons of people just from the sheer presence of it. It's scary. Overall: I will always be satisfied with this guitar. It is, simply put, perfect. Though I will be buying other basses in the future to expand the sound variety, they will never replace the Ric. If it were lost or stolen I would immediately look for a new one. It sounds great, it looks great, it feels great: it is great.
59 of 62 people (95.16%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Nothing like a Ricky!" submitted January 4, 2008

By a customer from yahoo.com
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Musical Background: Active musician
Music Style: Rock, Blues and almost anything else.
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
VERIFIED BUYER
zZounds has verified that this customer bought this product from us.
Sound: Ricks have a sound all their own, I have owned my 4001 since 1980 and I am always amazed at how great it sounds. Even in these days of active electronics and onboard pre-amps I can honestly say that my old passive Ricks sounds as good, or better than modern basses with all kinds of gadgets onboard. Feature: Still a wonderfully made bass and a classic design, it was very innovative for its day; I am willing to bet that when it was introduced it was the only bass with a through neck and dual trussrods. Ease of Use: Sounds fantastic and it plays like a dream, this is one bass that darn near does play itself! Quality: Like I said, very well made. Mine was made in 1974, it seen more gigs than I can remember, it went from the US, to Japan, and Korea, I had with me aboard ship. I had to take it to a luthier a few times, but never any major problems. Value: Largely handmade in the USA at less than two grand, go price a Fodera or a Sadowski and see if you can pick one of those up for less than $2000. Manufacturer Support: Never really needed it. If the other poster was discouraged because the company would give him a truss rod wrench, I know why, when I enquired about a truss rod wrench the folks at Rickenbacker told me in no uncertain terms not to try to adjust the neck myself but to take take the bass to reputable luthier; they were right! The Wow Factor: Like I said, I have owned mine since 1980. Overall: I have been satisfied with mine for 28 years!
80 of 85 people (94.12%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Holy Smokes!" submitted February 15, 2012

By Tim Whitaker in New Egypt, NJ
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Musical Background: 42 years, I play all kinds of music and every Sunday at church
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Overall: I've been playing guitar and bass for 42 years. This bass is incredible in every way. I wanted a Rick 4000 series for a while but never pulled the trigger because of the price. I should have done it sooner! After seeing all the raving reviews on line about this bass I ordered it from Zzounds (excellent customer service, price and fast shipping BTW). I then came across a guy on Youtube that is supposed to be some kind of guitar repair man and he bad mouths the Ricks. I have to say I became a little concerned. I'M NOT CONCERNED ANY MORE. The quality of this bass both in terms of materials and craftsmanship as well as SOUND lives up to it's lofty reputation. I will say that the Rick has a sound all it's own which I love. If you don't care for that signature sound, then this bass will not be for you. However, if you do like the Rick sound - only a Rick will give it to you. This is the third bass in my collection and it's definitely going the be the most heavily used on - NO DOUBT!
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"Just want to say..." submitted March 6, 2013

By John B in Saint Charles, MO
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Musical Background: Playing guitar for 45 years. Ukueleist. Singer. Semi-Pro
Music Style: Rock, Blues, Jazz, Improv Jamming
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Overall: This is a really cool bass, sounds great, plays great, stereo, nice bass. It's a great break away from the typical Fender bass. I got JetGlo but in retrospect, I'd take any color. I do have one big complaint -- call me petty but, this guitar comes with strap lock strap buttons installed, but they don't give you the other part of the strap lock so you can actually use them. So I guess you are supposed to go out and buy a strap lock system and throw out the buttons, because apparently that's what they did, only they threw out the lock part that goes on the strap. Excuse me, but hey Rickenbacker -- I think this is ridiculous, you owe me the other half of the strap locks .. if you are not going to give me the locks, then put a regular button on the guitar, otherwise, somebody's strap is gonna let go of this fine instrument. What a shame.
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"Best bass in the world." submitted March 15, 2006

By a customer from optonline.net
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Musical Background: active musician
Music Style: rock/jazz/alternative
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Sound: I own two Ricks. 1974 4001 & 2003 4003. I've tried other basses. Even owned an Ibenez...just to have a different sound. I eventually sold it. I've played many basses. Nothing plays or sounds like a Rick. Theye're beautiful instruments. Play clean or with effects...just a great instrument. I'm waiting (like many others) for the 5-string to be re-issued. I'll get one in a flash. Feature: The stereo sound is great. Ease of Use: Plays like a dream. Quality: Got to be one of the best made guitars. I still use my '74. I keep it tuned to a 'D' for different stuff. Value: It's worth more than it's selling price, and they hold their value quite well as they age. Manufacturer Support: Parent co. is easy to reach and very helpful. Sent me instructions on how to adjust the neck myself. The Wow Factor: It's a beautiful guitar...in any color...or natural. I own a jet black and a natural finish. Overall: The only reason I would ever purchase another brand is if I can't wait any longer for their 5-string to come out.
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"Hands down, best bass ever made" submitted March 31, 2007

By a customer from yahoo.com
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Musical Background: recording musician
Music Style: indie, noise, garage, blues
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: This is the best sounding bass I've ever laid hands on. It's so exquisitely versatile, and you can tailor it to accomodate literally any style. Really shines on the treble, a clear punch that colors your sound very well and breaks through into the foreground. Feature: Love the stereo output, the neck-through body design gives you insane sustain. Neck is so smooth and buttery. Only the most high class materials and the absolute sexiest finish on any instrument as far as I'm concerned. Ease of Use: This bass will make you a better bassist simply by virtue of your owning it. Quality: Pound for pound and dollar for dollar, this is the best bass that money can buy. It's just so fun to play and so great to own one. Sometimes I can't help but to just stare at it and admire it. Visually flawless, tonally immaculate. I wish I had 10 of these things. Value: $1350 was what I paid...a little steep, but well worth it. Manufacturer Support: Very helpful, when I first got mine I couldn't get the stereo output to work right so that I could play through two amps at the same time and they instructed me. Very easy to deal with. Never needed any serious work done, but the warranty covers damn near everything except human stupidity. The Wow Factor: I had an insatiable lust for this bass long before I could even afford it. Everything about it just feels right, the style, the weight, the color. Once I got this thing I stopped playing everything else and ignored all my other instruments for like 6 months. Overall: I love it. It's just perfect. If you're considering buying it, just do it, whether you can afford it or not. There's just no comparison to any other bass on the market. The versatility of it, the aesthetics of it, the brilliant tone, and just the fun level of it alone justify the price of ownership. This is my baby. If anything ever happened to it, I'd be devastated and replace it immediately.
9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Why the Rickenbacker 4003 is the best bass on the planet!" submitted June 5, 2006

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: Active Musician for 11 years
Music Style: NWOBHM-early speed metal
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VERIFIED BUYER
zZounds has verified that this customer bought this product from us.
Sound: Very powerful sound with an unmistakable punch! I've played Fender bass', Gibson bass' and Ibanez bass' and my Rickenbacker beats them all hands down. Feature: The case is a beast, you could really kick the hell out of it and wouldn't cause any damage to your gear inside. The locks on the case are nice to, never can be too safe with something that costs over a grand! The horseshoe pickup cover is pretty annoying, you'll probably find yourself taking it off, as it covers the "sweet spot" IMO. Also, if you take it off you'll find that the cover is plastic, not crome, as I originally thought...kinda cheasy. Ease of Use: Very easy to get the sound you want from this bass, but my Rick-O Sound input jack is pretty fuzzy, I'll have to get that fixed up. I didn't even look at the manual, just plug it in and play away! Quality: Very sturdy bass, you can really crush it. It'll stay in tune after a hard thrashing also. Definitely road tough...the only drawback is the price. I don't want to take it on the road and bang the hell out of it and chance breaking it, but I'm gonna do it anyways. Value: Worth the price and then some! I've never been more happy about a purchase in my life! Manufacturer Support: I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt. I haven't used the support team yet and hope that I don't have to. I feel as though they'd respect me and deal with my problems though. The Wow Factor: I got the Fireglow edition, I really wish they still made the Oxblood colored edition! I'm gonna have to track that down. IMO you can't find a better bass shape than the Rickenbacker 4001-4003! Overall: I expect to have this bass for the rest of my life, and it'll be my number one! If it breaks, gets stolen or lost I'll defintely buy another one in a heartbeat! In fact, I'm gonna look for an old 4001 on eBay just to have an older one that I feel more comfortable beating up. My only regret is that I bought other brands bass guitars before buying this masterpiece...do NOT listen to any bad mouthing on this bass! I've been playing for 11 years and there is nothing wrong with it at all!
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"Its a rickenbacker..." submitted November 1, 2006

By a customer from tampabay.rr.com
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Musical Background: Hobbyist, School Jazzband Bassist
Music Style: Rock, Jazz,Blues
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: This bass has a unique sound to it. It has more treble sound like all the old Rickenbacker 4001's. I don't own this bass. I have used it. I own a 1964 4001. This bass also has a switch on one of the knobs to change back to a balanced bass and treble sound. Great for all styles. Feature: The whole thing was so confortable. It also looks awesome with the binding and the fret markers. The only part I do not like is the scale. It is slightly short. It doesn't bother me much though. I really like the neck-through body design. Ease of Use: Very good sound comes from this. The vintage to balanced sound switch on the knob makes it easier to switch styles and sounds. The neck-through body design makes this great. Quality: The best to my opinion. The only thing I would like is a Mahogany finish like on the 4001's. Value: This is worth the buy. Get it if you like playing bass. Manufacturer Support: Never had problems in the first place. Nor with my 4001! The Wow Factor: It looks so cool! It has binding, the fret markers, a good finish, and an cool looking head. Overall: ITS SO AWESOME!!!
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"Will always love the 4003 Rickenbacker Bass" submitted February 1, 2011

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: Professional/Active Musician
Music Style: Jazz/Progressive/Classical/Electronic
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Sound: It is a Rickenbacker 4003. This is my favorite bass of all time. It has standard plug, or Rick-O-Sound plug. It can go form normal bass to extreme overtone classic Rick sounds. There is a new feture on this one verses the 1997 one that i had. The pull knob pulls out and activates whatever type of capacitor in the pickup that made the old vintage 4001's unique. It can blend between old and new. Feature: Very nice Rickenbacker case. It came with a cloth as well. Ease of Use: It took reading the directions for 1 minute to understand the way the new knob selector worked. Quality: Ricks are still made in their small little warehouse in CA. This era seem to be very well quality controlled. Value: Wow they went up 200% in price from 1996 when I bought the first one... Manufacturer Support: Never had any problem with 2 4003's so far. The Wow Factor: It is black and white JetGlow. It's hot. Overall: I plan to keep this for life
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"This bass will continue to be well sought after. As long as Rickenbacker upholds the quality it will be a classic." submitted January 4, 2008

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Sound: This bass is a classic. Well be a collectors item as time goes on. Got mine when I got out of high school. It was made in Oct. of 1972.Till this day it sounds great,it's 36 years old I don't gig anymore but I kept this guitar all these years cause it meant something to me. Feature: The rick o sound became one very unique thing. Ease of Use: Had to get used to the long scale neck,but after that it became second nature. Quality: like a fine piece of furniture. As time goes on it just looks better. Manufacturer Support: Never had to use support. I've heard some others had some issues with them.
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"Buy one! You know you want one." submitted September 1, 2005

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: hobbyist
Music Style: classic rock, country
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Sound: Awesome tone and treble punch. The contol knobs will let you get a god variety of tones. I need this because our band has been known to play sabbath and then go right into a Johnny Cash song. Feature: nice case and nice polishing cloth. Quality: great wood, and beautiful finish. Solid as a rock. Will withstand earthquakes and tornadoes. Will stay in tune forever. Value: Well worth the money. I always considered them hogh priced, but they are no more than an American made Fender, and priced well below other guitars of equal quality. Manufacturer Support: unknown, Have never needed them. The Wow Factor: Geddy Lee, Chris Squire, McCartney, Roger Glover. Seeing and hearing these guys play them is what drew me to them in the first place. Overall: I will never need another bass. I also have a fretless for jazz, but as far as a main axe. My search is over.
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Rickenbacker 4003 Bass Customer Review submitted January 14, 2004

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Music Style: Rock - RUSH rules!!!
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Sound: Rick's rule. There distinct sound is awesome and umatched. There is no better bass on the market for the same amount of money, and I have tried them all in my 23 years of playing. Feature: The thin neck will make you never want to go back to another "thick neck" bass, like the Fender Precision. Once you play it you will be hooked. Quality: Well made and will take a beating if you are constantly going from gig to gig. Value: For a mass produced bass in this price range you can't beat it. And it was actually made in America! Overall: Like I said, for a mass produced bass in this price range you can't beat it. The only other bass I ever liked as much, if not more, than the Ricky was an Alembic (the Stanley Clarke Deluxe), but those are $7,000!!!! If it's good enough for Geddy Lee, then it's good enough for you...enough said!
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"i love my ric" submitted September 28, 2006

By a customer from verizon.net
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Musical Background: musician
Music Style: punk/ska/jazz
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Sound: it has a great sound its not to phat and not too thin its just about in the sweet spot Feature: yeah its good but id take off the pickup cover cuz its right in the way if you like to pic/slap-n-pop/or just use your fingers...and you can kill your wrist too Ease of Use: its fun and the fingerboard is fast and people dont know what there talking about when they say you cant slap a rick. the neck isnt the thinnedt in the world but its not hard to get around on Quality: i love the quality...especialy the fingerboard Value: its totaly worth it buybuybuybuy! Manufacturer Support: i dunno The Wow Factor: its a beautiful bass Overall: i love it but ive never seen "the perfect bass" yet
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"After a long wait I found the best Bass out of the lot..." submitted June 24, 2008

By a customer from rcn.com
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Musical Background: Active Musician
Music Style: Classic Rock, Rock, Heavy Metal
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Sound: The sound is truly classic Ric. It produces a clean solid sound that I have yet to find in any of the other basses I have owned. Feature: It did come with the standard wiping cloth and cases keys and Allen key. It came with the male strap lock buttons, but none for the strap (In my opinion it should come with an entire set Like My Fenders Did) Ease of Use: Very easy to get the sounds you are looking for and without spending hours reading manuals. Quality: It is the best quality Bass I have purchased to date and I have been play and buying basses for better than 20 years. Value: Well worth the money for a quality Bass that will give years of service. Manufacturer Support: I only called about the other half of the strap locks, thinking they were left out (they were not). I got right through and they answered my question quickly and professionally. The Wow Factor: I have wanted one for years and always had other things come up to block the buy. But after many years and lots of dreaming I finally got one. Overall: I expect to have this bass until such time as I can no longer play or I die. If it were stolen, I would buy another without delay.
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"If you want a great bass, look no further" submitted February 11, 2005

By a customer from goldrush.com
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Musical Background: hobbyist, I play on the weekends
Music Style: easy rock, rock, adult contemporary, jazz, classical
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
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Sound: Love the sound this bass produces. I get a variety of tones from it, from soft and smooth to loud and cranky. No wonder Lemmy plays one! The pickups on this bass are really loud, so be careful before you turn up the amp. This puppy gets loud and in a hurry! Feature: The case is top notch. Features are great, but I wish the knobs were reversed, with the volume knobs on top and the tone knobs on the bottom, but that's just me. Quality: The quality of this bass is outstanding! Workmanship, fit and finish are all 100% grade A perfect. I have a mapleglo, and this bass literally glows in the dark. Outstanding! Value: For the money this bass is outstanding. If it sold for less it would be a steal, but aren't we all looking for that anyway? :-) Manufacturer Support: I haven't had to deal with Rickenbacker yet, as I've had no issues with this bass in the year that I've had it. The Wow Factor: I've always wanted a Ric bass and was finally able to get one in mapleglo..... Hopefully I'll have another one in jetglo before this year is out. Overall: Overall this bass is outstanding! Great tones, fabulous neck and I'm used to the knob placement now, so that little quirk is resolved. I would definately replace it if it were stolen, and I hope to have another one, in jetglo, before 2005 is over. Just a great bass overall.
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"What God turns to for Prayer" submitted March 28, 2008

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Musical Background: Hobbyist/Active Musican(where possible)
Music Style: Punk, Ska, Funk, Indie, Reggae, Dub, Rock, Alternattive
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Sound: I suggest if you have this bass, get a huge amp - you're treating your Rickie badly unless you plug it into a huge amp and show off the awesome sound you get from this baron Feature: It seems like a step up from every other bass,it's got what a fender or Gibson has - and even more: the rick o sound, the dual truss rods, the string mutes, the easily adjustable bridge, the pickup switch Pickup cover is cool - but it's killer looking for about ten minutes, then you must take it off to REALLY play it Ease of Use: Frankly to get the sound you want - not an issue with the bass - if you don't like what you're getting, your amp sucks Quality: It's Killer - That's all to say Value: There things are expensive and that's a turn off for most bassists - they're becoming rare and I think that may be the reason- if they made Rickie's the same price as USA fenders, everyone would be getting one Manufacturer Support: Nothing bad to say so full marks, once again The Wow Factor: I have wanted this bass for about four years and I took me about four years to get it - finally I did, and I never looked back Overall: What can I say- It's the Concorde of Basses(except it'll last to rock on forever)
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"Possibly the best bass ever..." submitted July 6, 2009

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: Active Musician, Currently on Tour.
Music Style: Progressive Rock, Hard Rock, Rock, Jazz, Heavy Metal
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Sound: I have the 4001 and 4003 model, I got my 4002 model stolen back in 1996, but I can live without that one. I usually go for these two models, if anything else I usually go to my Fender Geddy Lee jazz bass. The sound is so forceful on this bass, clear mids, highs, and blisteing lows. The neck is slightly odd for my taste, but I do like the sound it delivers. Feature: I got mine in a trade, and it didnt include anything but the hardshell case. I bought a strap because I didnt think it would be a big deal, you know? 20$ more and thats it. But the case was in good condition, and the rick wasn't used. (Im talking about my 4003 model, not my 4001) Ease of Use: This thing plays like butter at times. I do like some crunchy high end at times, but I do like to have low end rumbling for some songs that my band plays, and sometimes I like it inbetween, and it is so easy to do that with the Rick. Really nice knobs in my opinion, and make for easy mastering of tone. Quality: Like I said, I got mine in a trade new. It had no dings, and it was in Jetglo or Black color. The knobs were perfect and the strings were already decent I would say. I dont have to worry if anything breaks because it wont as it hasent been destroyed by the road.....yet at least. Value: This thing is amazing, the tone is sheer beauty and I say it is one of the best basses out there for the experienced or the proffesional bassist. Manufacturer Support: I got mine at a place called hix in Chicago, and I think it was the only Rickenbacker that they have ever traded in. I traded my old Squier by Fender Bronco Bass piece of crap, and they really didnt care, so Im really happy that they were nice enough to give my a 2000$ bass for a 150$ bass in return. The Wow Factor: The bass just looks good. The black color, the neck, the pickups, and even the hand holder thing above the pickup makes it look really interesting. Overall: I've been happy with the bass for over 2 years now, and I have been happy with Rickenbacker bass for over 20 years!
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"Rays review" submitted March 26, 2014

By Ray Gregory in SaintClair, PA
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Musical Background: 25 years off playin Pro. Bass is my instrument
Music Style: Rock Metal Country blues!
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Overall: I own the 4003 series it is my favorite axe. its also my primary axe to out with it has the punch in the face low end and highs that youd expect from this bass!!
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"4 String Harley Davidson" submitted July 21, 2003

By a customer from aol.com
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Music Style: Classic Rock
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Sound: JetGlo 4003, w/ a Line 6 BassPod and a pair of Ampeg Rocket 50s, I can't think of a bass sound I can't make. This bass rings like a concert piano on certain notes, and rips like a chainsaw on others. Feature: Dual vol/tone, 3 way toggle, stereo jacks; Schaller type strap lock buttons are a nice touch. Solid hardshell case, could form-fit a little tighter, but not a big deal. Quality: Fit and finish is beautiful. USA made, I am proud to support our country!! Value: Find it new for under $1000 and you're in the ballpark...clean used for $750+ (at least in So. Mich). While I wouldn't be happy about it, I'd spend the grand again. Manufacturer Support: Not used or needed yet... The Wow Factor: I've loved the Ric look and sound since I first picked up a 4 banger. These things are the Harley Davidsons of the music world - loud, sleek, and sexy. Overall: I konw there are bigger/louder/faster/expensive/techno machines out there, but for a tin eared biker who enjoys hammering a few low end notes once in a while, this bass is a sexy chick in a "EADG" string.
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"Greatest bass ever built" submitted January 8, 2005

By a customer from yahoo.com
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Musical Background: active musician
Music Style: Rock,
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Sound: Nothing else in the world sounds like a Rick! Try using a chours effect with the neck pickup...you WILL be amazed! Feature: Super well built. Mine's ten years old and looks awesome, and plays awesome. Quality: Nothing wrong with this baby! Value: Any other bass made with the craftsmanship of a rick costs much more. Manufacturer Support: I called them once to order a t-shirt. That went well. I've never needed to call for any other reason. The Wow Factor: The styling is timeless. Some people think they're ugly, but I think it's the coolest bodied bass on the planet. If I could afford it, I'd have one in every color. Overall: I have to admit, I'm looking for another bass now...ANOTHER RICK!!! I love 'em! i'll NEVER get rid of the one I have, I'll only add to my collection!!
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""Dream bass for the cash"" submitted May 28, 2005

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Sound: Powerfull sound. It has a warm and deep sound. Feature: I don't like the "thing" over the strings. Quality: No comments. Value: Good. Manufacturer Support: I don't know, but i hope they are nice! The Wow Factor: I love the "midnight blue"-color! It's heavy but if you have a good strap it won't bother you. Else, it's the best bass i've played on! Overall: I bought this bass guitar 'cause Roger Glover have one. It's really nice, beautiful and the sound is cool. The thing i least like about it is the "thing" over the strings. But you can remove it!
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Rickenbacker 4003 Bass Customer Review submitted September 23, 2004

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Music Style: Rock, Punk, Country
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: Great sound for punk rock or classic rock. Lacks the extreme lows that I like. Feature: Its vintage no need for bells or whistles Quality: Beutiful!! Manufacturer Support: They have been very helpful The Wow Factor: Probably the coolest looking bass outthere Overall: If you have never played one you must try one. My favorite bass.
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"Amazing Bass!!!" submitted April 24, 2006

By a customer from yahoo.com
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Musical Background: Active musician in Band
Music Style: Eastern groove, American Groovem, Bass strum
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Sound: this bass is amazing. i own many basses including Warwicks, but this bass performs the greatest. playing through a full Gallien Kruger Stack With this Beast Bass really puts out the best sound. Feature: I Love the neck on the bass, it fits me perfect when i play and its easier. Ease of Use: it is pretty easy to get your sound to be great, all you need is to know how to set your amp to the right tone to get the sound you want. Quality: this bass...you can rely on this bass, it is so well put together it will stay that way. I have 2 ricks and they have had no problems over the years ive had them. Value: pretty much. Manufacturer Support: i didnt need any service. The Wow Factor: bass players, this bass is the one if you love to play the bass wickedly and love to play groove. Overall: Ive had the 2 ricks for years and they last a long time and stay in good condition. If My rick was stolen and i could never get a rick again, i would get a new Warwick.
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"PLAY A RIC 4003 YOU WILL NEVER GO BACK!!!" submitted May 3, 2005

By a customer from SBCGLOBAL.NET
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Musical Background: ACTIVE MUSICAN
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Sound: THE 4003 IS A VERY EASY PLAYING GUITAR ONCE YOU GET ITS FEEL YOU CAN VARY THE SOUND OF THE GUITAR ALOT OF WAYES I WOULD NOT TRADE MINE FOR NOTHING IT IS PLEASURE TO PLAY SUCH A FINE GUITAR I SAY IF ITS GOOD ENOUGH FOR GETTY LEE AND PAUL MCCARTNEY ITS GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME! I PLAY COUNTRY AND ROCK ECT. ECT.,HAVE TO BE VERSITAL IN TX. HA! THERE ARE ALOT OF GREAT GUITARS OUT THERE BUT MY RIC 4003 IS ONE OF THE FINEST THERE IS WITH OTHER GUITARS I HAVE PLAYED IN THE PAST I USED EX. FOR MORE SOUND,BUT WITH THE RIC 4003 I QUIT USING EX. I DIDNT NEED THEM ANYMORE I PLAY MY RIC. 4003 ON A PEVEY MARK VIII HEAD AND A PEVEY 4-10 HEAD W/COMMPRESSON AND A HOME MADE CABINET WITH 2 SCORPION PLUS 15'S, (I ONLY USE THE 2-15'S ON LARGER SHOES) BUT THE SOUND IS AMAZING. THANKS FOR LETTING ME TALK ABOUT MY FAVORITE SUBJET HA! HAVE A GREAT DAY -- RANDY (THUMPER) DENNIS. Feature: I LIKE MINE JUST THE WAY IT IS! Quality: ALL GOOD Value: YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR! Manufacturer Support: PERFECT THE RIC. CO. IS GREAT The Wow Factor: THERE ARE NO PERFECT 10'S BUT MINE IS HAS CLOSE AS IT GETS! IT LIKE MY WIFE GREAT! Overall: OVER ALL I ANT SAY ENOUGH ABOUT MY GUITAR AND I WOULD BY A NOTHER ONE.
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"Playablity, sound, looks add up to one badass bass." submitted June 24, 2007

By a customer from cvw5.navy.mil
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Musical Background: Musician
Music Style: Rock Blues Country R&B Jazz Spiritual Classical Pop
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Sound: True! Feature: All Ease of Use: Fingers glide over the fretboard . Quality: Got the silver and black tuxedo love it! Value: Bought mine back in 85' for $800 Manufacturer Support: Replacement parts. The Wow Factor: My mistress of 22 years. Overall: Mine for keeps love everything about her!
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"Buyer be ware !" submitted January 3, 2011

By a customer from juno.com
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Musical Background: active musician
Music Style: rock
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VERIFIED BUYER
zZounds has verified that this customer bought this product from us.
Sound: Great bass, my problem is with Rickenbacker, the plastic case developed a rip on the corner. Rickenbacker does not warranty the case,neither does SKB. Manufacturer Support: Great bass, my problem is with Rickenbacker, the plastic case developed a rip on the corner. Rickenbacker does not warranty the case,neither does SKB. Rickenbacker claims to have a great warranty but nowhere do they exclude their carrying case. I called Rickenbacker, they referred me to SKB, who referred me back to Rickenbacker. SKB makes the case for Rickenbacker, the case has the RICKENBACKER name on it, neither company have been any help. Overall: Looks like I'll have to buy another case, it won't be from SKB.
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"To sound good and look good RIC is it." submitted May 13, 2006

By a customer from msn.com
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Musical Background: Pro bass
Music Style: Rock,Jazz,Cristian rock
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Ease of Use: love the narrow neck The Wow Factor: has punch like a pro fighter, has looks like a super model.
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"I SHALL RETURN" submitted September 9, 2008

By a customer from agilent.com
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Musical Background: 37 years of Active Bass playing
Music Style: Communist Jazz, Brutal Tritone hard rock, 60 dBm of RF power
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Sound: Gentlemen, I was the owner of a 1972 Black Ric 4001. Although it was an outstanding bass I "rid" myself of it because the neck "swayed" too much. I know this is an unusual remark but my 1962 Gibson EBO was a set-neck bass(short scale) and felt rock-solid. The tone of my 4001 and neck action were to die for but did not like that unsolid neck sway,Traded it. BTW I have owned my 1967 Fender Precision since 1971. guess I am just a Fender man @ heart. I do love the Ric sound and will likely but the 4001CS version. Currently my main girl is a custom shop 1966 Fender Jazz bass Replica. With "paddle-style" tuners. Turan Porter of the Doobie Brothers used to play a 4001 into an Acoustic 370 and previous posters are correct about using a great amp to pump out your sound. PEACE AND HAPPINESS TO ALL Feature: GREAT BASS, BUT HARD TO ADJUST THE BRIDGE PIECES FOR PERFECT HARMONICS. Leo's machines are easier to adjust. IMHO Ease of Use: Are you kidding, it's a Ric. Great tone with RS66LD strings. No introduction needed. Listen to "Your's Is No Disgrace" on the Yes Album and "Siberian Khatru" on Close to the Edge. Nuff said. Quality: Neck sway was an issue with mine so it's OUTTA HERE. But do not let my opinion SWAY you. If yer in a Yes tribute band ya got no choice, if yer in a Rush Tribute band then get the "Geddy Lee" bass as it's the best buy in basses. Ric's are very well made. Value: Nobody was ever sorry they bought a 4001 Manufacturer Support: it was used, Stars Guitars, south of Market street in San Francisco takes care of my Fender's. The Wow Factor: It is a great bass so quit reading this drivel and buy it already. Overall: Will buy another 4001, a CS model.
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"Bass that will blow your mind...Just don't call the company." submitted July 12, 2007

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: Active Musician
Music Style: Progressive Rock...(Rush and Iron Maiden) =)
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Sound: It is everything that a dream bass is expected to sound like. Beautiful sounding low and punchy notes like a bass should be eh? It is top notch. Feature: It has everything you need, except a trust rod tool for the extreley inconvenient trust rod tool needed. Every bass should come with its trustrod tool. Ease of Use: Easy, smooth, its just flatt out great. Easy to frett and play, no matter the style Quality: Only the best parts and woods were used to make this other than the plastic pickup cover, I thought it was chrome... Watch out for the springs that pop out when you remove it. Value: Worth every penny. I would buy the entire series if I had the money. But you get every cent of what you pay for. Manufacturer Support: Very poor. I called in their toll free number to ask why my Rickebacker, one of the highest names of musical instruments, did't come with a Trust-rod tool. They were very short with me about it. They did not even recoment buying one from them, or where to get one. Luckely for them I own alot of tools. The Wow Factor: Its beautiful looking. Overall: If the company wouldn't have been so poor, it would be my perfect bass experience.
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"Long Time 4003 user"

By a customer from metrocast.net
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Music Style: Rock, Blues, Alternative
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Sound: I've been playing one for 18 years and owned other supposedly top quality Basses, and still prefer the Rick, Squires aren't even in the same league, a early 70's Jazz is close, though you do have to try 3 or four to get the right one, just like fenders and Gibsons, but deffinetly worth it. Though I wouldn't buy one through mail order. You can't beat the sound and sustain, and play ability...... Quality: Awesome detail Value: Better that an American Fender at $1300 Manufacturer Support: Never needed it, in the 18 years I've owned it The Wow Factor: Can't compare it, it is totaly sexy, I get compliments every time, I have the Blue on Black Overall: I will never part with it, it's just been refretted after 18 years, and now haveing a 70's custom Fender Jazz with inlays built Maple neck Natural finish with D tuner, all USA made.......
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"BEST DANG GUITAR EVER" submitted July 27, 2004

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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: blew my ears away man they are still ringin Feature: that thing stole my heart i fell in love and was about to cry Quality: i dont think these numbers are high enough to explain this guitar it also made me a little randy when i first saw it Overall: any one and every one should buy this guitar
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"Poor Quality, Porr Design, & Poor Customer Service" submitted November 2, 2010

By a customer from Yahoo.com
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Musical Background: hobby
Music Style: jazz and rock
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Sound: The sounds is okay. The problem with this bass resides in it's poorly engineered neck, truss-rod system, and bridge. Feature: The bridge is a real pain to intonate. It's noting like a Fender American Jazz which has a superior design. You CANNOT raise or lower individual strings on the Rick and the screws to intonate are not easily accessible. The truss rods are another poorly designed feature. Quality: This is the poorest quality instrument I've ever owned. Gibson, Music Man, and Fender basses are much better. Value: Overpriced. That's in in a nutshell. Buy a Fender, MM, Gibson, or even an Epiphone bass. You will be much better off Manufacturer Support: Ric doesn't seem to care about service after the sale. Unlike Gibson who stand behind their products, Ric leaves you out to hang.
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"A vintage classic, but eye-candy gets in the way of playability." submitted July 27, 2004

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Music Style: Rock
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Sound: Maple wood, neck through construction. A bright, distinctive sound. "Ric o sound" gimmicky IMO, and stereo feature a novelty but not very useful in majority of real world situations. Feature: Two passive pickups, definately old school but respectable signal output. Can be noisy around lights, etc, like all single coil pickups. Stereo and Ric-o-sound can be interesting, but true usefullness is questionable. For someone looking for "the Ric bass" sound, great vintage sound. Very thin neck...nice for playablity if you have smaller hands, but can be a liability if you get one that starts warping (but that's why these models have two truss rods, so most of the time warpage can be controlled). No cutaway or contour on topside, so it can dig into your upper arm and can be very uncomfortable after prolonged playing. String spacing is closer than most basses, so keep this in mind. Do you slap and pop?...then pass this bass on by. Large bridge pickup cover is just eye candy, be aware that you either need to play around it, or remove it exposing a large gaping hole around bridge pickup. Archaic bridge has mute which is useless to majority of playing styles...how many bass players want to deliberately disable the sustain on an electric bass? Knobs for mute adjustment can and will loosen and need to be tightened and checked periodically. Quality: Good quality parts and components generally, but need to mention that the chrome on my tailpiece was flaking within two years. Cover around plug jacks got very rusty...strange since I kept very good care of the guitar and have never had a "rust problem" with ANY other bass, ever. Excellent and beautiful finish which tends to be the hallmark feature of Rickenbackers. Value: Prices are reasonable given that this is an American made instrument, and will tend to hold it's value over the years. But not a 10 because because for a $1000+ there are just too many other basses that can be better or more versatile. Manufacturer Support: Never dealt with them...so maybe a nine just to give the benefit of the doubt. The Wow Factor: Honestly, the majority of these basses sell because they look like a classic Studebaker-- unique vintage lines, lots of chrome, a pretty paint job, and they simply don't look like everyone else. Or because so-and-so played one in the seventies. To some, it simply looks like a cross between an old guitar and a vintage toaster. Overall: People tend to either love or hate this bass. If you try one and like it, then you will probably stick with Ric's for years. I found that my Ric was useful for most of the music we played, but I still kept a Fender J or P close by.
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