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Rickenbacker 4003W

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The Classic Rickenbacker bass has been strengthened with walnut for a solid and natural look that keeps with the traditional character of the instrum...Click To Read More About This Product

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See All Rickenbacker 4 String Electric Bass
OVERVIEW

A body style and sound that is beloved by Ric fans now in gorgeous walnut.

The Classic Rickenbacker bass has been strengthened with walnut for a solid and natural look that keeps with the traditional character of the instrument made famous for its ringing sustain, treble punch and solid underlying bass. A subtle strip of binding graces the elegantly curved body and the maple fretboard. Deluxe triangular inlays and stereo capability are standard features. Includes case.

FEATURES
Body Type: Solid
No. Frets: 20
Scale Length: 84.5cm (33-1/4'')
Neck Width at Nut: 42.9mm (1-11/16'')
Neck Width at 12th Fret: 54mm (2-1/8'')
Crown Radius: 25.4cm (10'')
Body Wood: Walnut
Neck Wood: Maple
Fingerboard Wood: Maple
Weight: 4.1kg (9.0lb.)
Overall Length: 113.8cm (44-13/16'')
Overall Width: 34.3cm (13-1/2'')
Overall Depth: 31.8mm (1-1/4'')
Neck Binding: Yes
Fret Marker Style: Triangle
Tailpiece: RIC
Bridge: RIC
Neck Type: Through body
No. of Pickups: 2
Type of Pickups: Single-Coil
Output Type: Mono and Stereo
Machine Heads: Schaller Deluxe
Includes case

Rickenbacker has been turning heads and turning up ears for years. Get yours today!

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
Rickenbacker4003W
 
4.9

(based on 26 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (24)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good tone (22)
  • Fun to play (21)
  • Good feel (20)
  • Solid electronics (20)
  • Good pick up (18)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Jamming (16)
  • Practicing (15)
  • Recording (15)
  • Rock concerts (10)
  • Small venues (10)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (15), Professional musician (8)

Reviewed by 26 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(13 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Rickenbacker really outdid themselves.

By Tom P.

from Chicago, IL

About Me Experienced

Pros

  • Good Feel
  • Good Tone
  • Solid Electronics

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

      I'm really amazed at the workmanship on these 4003 Walnut series basses. I own 2 other Rickenbacker basses, a 2006 4003 Mapleglo and a 1979 4001 Jetglo. This outplays both of them for a number of reasons.

      First, the neck is really quick for a Rickenbacker. The thickness is somewhere in between the chunky Mapleglo and one of the narrowest necks I've played on the Jetglo. But the best part about it is the satin finish. The paint on the 4001 slows you down, and the thick lacquer on the other 4003 is really annoying, especially when you start sweating a bit. This is so smooth and easy to play that I don't know why Rickenbacker doesn't finish all their necks this way.

      Second, the electronics are like nothing I've seen before on a Rick. This bass is dead quiet. The electronics are really responsive - you can really unlock the full dynamic capabilities of the bass with these pickups (which seem like they've been updated for this year). For passive pickups, these really impressed me.

      Finally, the consistency in sound at different places on the neck is usually the most discouraging thing about Ricks. This does not suffer from those usual faults. The sound out of this is rock solid and incredibly consistent - which once again, might have something to do with the pickups.

      The bottom line is that this is a fantastic bass. If you own another Rickenbacker, the tonal characteristics of the maple fingerboard and walnut body are different enough to make this a worthwhile upgrade or addition to your collection. If you don't, this is the one to get. They're only making them for 2014, so now's your chance.

      (11 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      A true diamond in the rough!

      By TheRickGuy

      from Boston

      About Me Professional Musician

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Fun To Play
      • Good Feel
      • Good Pick Up
      • Good Tone
      • Solid Electronics

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Jamming
        • Practicing
        • Recording

        Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

        This instrument is not only rare but beautiful. For those who own Rick 4001s or 4003s, you'll be amazed at the brightness, tone, overall feel, ease of playing, and weight of this instrument. The walnut and maple together really works. This bass has a satin finish throughout. You'll notice right away the difference with this neck vs. the common painted ones--its very fast, straight, flat, comes with low action and perfect intonation. No setup required. I own a 1976 4001 White and a 2014 4003 Ruby Red. I often play these and then switch to the walnut to then be truly amazed at the noticeable differences between them--the Rick sound is incredible and this walnut enhances whats already well known and highly sought after, enjoyed, and respected. Also, the sustain is incredible. When played acoustically the bass can be well heard--no need for amplification while song writing--truly amazing. Beautifully crafted and even smells good!

        (9 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Simple Perfection !

        By Rick

        from Spartanburg, SC

        About Me Experienced

        See all my reviews

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Fast Neck Action
        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Pick Up
        • Good Tone
        • Solid Electronics
        • VERY light weight

        Cons

        • None

        Best Uses

        • It's Now My Go To Bass

        Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

        Rickenbacker has always been known for quality and this bass is no exception. The fit and finish is perfect. The walnut stain is absolutely gorgeous and the tone is dead on for any style.
        It is such a comfortable feel and weight that makes it perfect for extended playing. It's now my favorite workhorse bass.

        (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        A TOTAL ACHIEVING OF RICKENBACKER

        By Low freq

        from Santiago, Chile

        About Me Professional Musician

        See all my reviews

        Pros

        • Everything In This Bass
        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Pick Up
        • Good Tone
        • I Love This Bass
        • Solid Electronics

        Cons

        • Nothing at all

        Best Uses

        • Jamming
        • Practicing
        • Recording
        • Rock Concerts
        • Works For Everything

        Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

        This bass is a reunion of the best things of Rickenbacker, plus extra amazing features. First, the neck width is a little thinner than the typical chunky 4003's made during the last decade, which makes it very comfortable and easy to play. Even when the construction has different body wings made with walnut, the distinctive Rick sound is there and intact. Amazing additions are the maple fingerborad which gives a very nice growl to the general sound; also the walnut body wings makes this bass very light, compared with the classic 4003 all made with maple. Finally, the oil finish: Besides being GORGEOUS, it gives a great sensitivity to the neck. Action out of the box was a little ackward to me, but that was corrected in 3 minutes with the allen keys. Excelent response of the truss rods and hardware. Also, the binding, inlays, hardware and finish are totally perfect. This bass is a masterpiece. Summarizing, this is one of the most beautiful Ricks 4003 even made, and also one of the fastest necks ever made for Rick basses (perhaps the exception could be those 4001 from the mid 80's with necks as thinner as a Fender Geddy Lee JB). FIND YOUR 4003W RIGHT NOW.

        (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        A GREAT RICK !

        By Fred

        from Rockledge Fl

        About Me Professional Musician

        See all my reviews

        Ask me a question

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Fun To Play
        • Good Feel
        • Good Pick Up
        • Good Tone
        • Solid Electronics

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Jamming
          • Recording
          • Rock Concerts
          • Small Venues

          Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

          Feels good to write the first review of this model AND to get one of the first ones from Rickenbacker .(Thank you Musician's Friend !) The bass has an amazing feel to it . Sound is typically like a 4003 , (I own two , one in Fireglo)).
          The finish is beautiful !! This bass is in very high demand right now so if you are lucky to find one , get it ! And --to Musician's Friend --thank you for your AMAZING customer service I'm a customer for life

          (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Gorgeous and sounds great!

          By StevieP

          from Sebastian, FL

          About Me Professional Musician

          See all my reviews

          Pros

          • Fun To Play
          • Good Tone
          • It's A Rick

          Cons

            Best Uses

              Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

              I'd owned a 4003 many years ago and had to sell it, so I'd been wanting to get another Rick for some time. Finally got a 4003W, and I couldn't be more pleased. The neck is a little chunky, just like all modern Ricks, but the tone is phenomenal and it's just gorgeous in walnut. Much more growly than my '87 Jetglo 4003, and lighter to boot. Buy one! You know you want to!

              (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Rickenbacker 4003W is just incredible.

              By Jack

              from Gilbert, AZ

              About Me Novice

              Verified Buyer

              Pros

              • Fun To Play
              • Good Feel
              • Good Pick Up
              • Good Tone
              • Matte Finish Is Awesome
              • Solid Electronics

              Cons

                Best Uses

                • Jamming
                • Practicing

                Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                Excellent instrument - setup was spot-on right out of the box. While I still enjoy playing my 2005 4003, the 4003W looks and plays beautifully and it's my new favorite.

                (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Worth The Wait!!!

                By Jamie Rickenbaugh

                from Union Kentucky

                About Me Experienced

                See all my reviews

                Verified Buyer

                Pros

                • Fun To Play
                • Good Pick Up
                • Solid Electronics

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Jamming
                  • Recording

                  Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                  30 years Playing Bass, I've had An 76' 4001 an 80' 4001 and a 2000 4003 in Maple Glow. Sadly I've parted with them all over the years. When Rickenbacker came out with this Walnut Finish I quickly began saving up for it. The playability is superb. The sound quality and craftsmanship is Top Knotch. I ordered it and had to wait 2 months for Rickenbacker to make it....Longest Wait Ever! But well worth it. This is a Keeper. Glad To add it to my Forever Arsenal that I won't be selling ever.

                  (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  I sure missed my 4001. Hello 4003W!

                  By Willy

                  from Gettysburg, PA

                  About Me Professional Musician

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Fun To Play
                  • Good Feel
                  • Good Pick Up
                  • Good Tone
                  • Solid Electronics

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Practicing
                    • Recording
                    • Rock Concerts
                    • Small Venues

                    Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                    The picture of the 4003W in the catalog was too much! Memories of my 1975 4001 started to dance in my head! My Fender bass now seemed inadequate and my restored Hofner a museum piece that should not be taken outside for performances. So I dropped the big plastic and am now enjoying those luscious tones and all the things Rickenbacker owners love about this bass! Nothing looks like, feels like, sounds like or plays like a Rickenbacker, especially the walnut version. The pull pot for vintage tone is nice but I like the newer sound and tone better for my group. The set up out of the box was perfect, no need to visit the shop for any tweaks.

                    (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    WHAT AN EPIC RICK!

                    By Too Much Time

                    from Oshkosh, WI

                    About Me Experienced

                    Pros

                    • Fun To Play
                    • Good Feel
                    • Good Pick Up
                    • Good Tone
                    • Solid Electronics

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Jamming
                      • Practicing
                      • Recording
                      • Small Venues

                      Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                      I have always loved Ricks. I have had the chance to play a 4001 & 4003 and the playability and tone was always killer. Just never could drop the paper for one. I have always been a diehard Fender J-bass man and the 1962 reissue J-bass I have is my go to always. This 4003W might have just became the new primary runner. Right out of the box, this bass is setup great. Intonation is excellent. The walnut gives this bass a slight distinct tone versus a standard 4003. I personally love it. Hands down a very well crafted instrument.

                      (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      My new favorite!

                      By Glenzoni

                      from Globe AZ by way of Buffalo NY (USAF)

                      About Me Experienced

                      Pros

                      • Craftsmanship
                      • Fun To Play
                      • Good Feel
                      • Good Pick Up
                      • Good Tone
                      • Solid Electronics

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Jamming
                        • Practicing
                        • Recording
                        • Rock Concerts

                        Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                        I wasn't actively looking for a new bass, but my (purchased new) '82 4001 Mapleglow is definitely showing it's age from LOTS of playing and travel. When I seen the 4003W, something about it, I just had to have one! Waited 9 months, but it's worth it. I LOVE this Rick.
                        The satin finish neck feels fast, the electronics are dead quiet, the tone is typical Rick (which is awesome) and it's got plenty of flexibility. The fit and finish are superb, and I like that it came with strap-lock buttons. The walnut really looks great, and the maple neck/fingerboard just looks right. The finish is not the typical Rick clearcoat finish, and looks beautiful. Somehow the binding makes it look classy (even for my heavy metal). I looked at the new 4003SW, and it just doesn't look as nice without the binding. The only thing I changed was adding a Hipshot D-tuner (been using one on my 4001 for 25 years, but that wasn't Rick specific. The new one is and matches the Schaller pegs nicely) and some Rotosound BS66 strings (for the D-tune). Other than that, it came perfect right out of the box, and even the Rick cases are nice quality. I've been playing Ricks for 33 years now, and this one is my favorite!

                        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        approaching divinity

                        By Keithy

                        from Kansas city, MO

                        About Me Experienced

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Fun To Play
                        • Good Feel
                        • Good Pick Up
                        • Good Tone
                        • Solid Electronics

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                            Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                            My Ric 4003w arrived 20 days early. I believe this is because the one I recieved had been returned by someone else. There is a small ding on the bottom side of the bridge(not normally visible and does not effect playability or sound). I understand that for most people, you pay this much and wait this long and you demand PERFECTION. I, on the other-hand, did not want to wait any longer and can easily forgive such slight imperfections in this case. This guitar is a work of art. Quality craftsmanship like this is immediately evident to professionals and the uninitiated alike. I played it for a few days before messing with anything. I did end up giving it just a touch of relief (slight truss rod adjustment) and removed that pickup cover. (I palm-mute frequently, and this is practically necessary. The nut and bridge are perfect. The wood and build are literally awesome. The sound is very versatile, contrary to what some would have you believe. I have heard some have replaced to stock bridge for something more adjustable, but I would not take this rock-solid bridge for granted. This bass has been made virtually the same way for 65 years or so. Rickenbacker has kept this bridge for a reason. I have heard tales of regret from the replacement bridge adjustable saddles clacking around and reducing sustain. Think twice (or thrice) before you carve into this thing. I don't even like any of the aftermarket pickup bezels. It's as close to perfection as I could ever hope for.

                            (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            5.0

                            Great Bass, A true Rickenbacker Classic

                            By Hoffer

                            from Newport Beach Calif.

                            About Me Professional Musician

                            See all my reviews

                            Pros

                            • Fun To Play
                            • Good Feel
                            • Good Pick Up
                            • Good Tone
                            • Solid Electronics

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                              • Jamming
                              • Practicing
                              • Recording
                              • Small Venues

                              Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                              Rickenbacker really scored on this bass. I've owned the 4001 in the past and wanted something similar. This is even better.The feel and sound quality will not disappoint. Thanks Musicians Friend Durran and CJ really took good care of me with the order, and all my requests.
                              If you love the Rickenbacker sound and presence as a progressive Bass player, this is the guitar for you. Down low on the neck and up high. No problems playing or buzzing frets. Just good clean RICKENBACKER sound and quality. Don't delay , if your thinking of getting one.Just Do It!

                              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              5.0

                              Rick sound, blazing fast neck.

                              By Griffworks

                              from Arkansas

                              About Me Professional Musician

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Good Tone
                              • High Quality
                              • Solid Electronics

                              Cons

                                Best Uses

                                  Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                  Orchestral Bassist, Jazz, Rock, Alt, Country with Electrics (since 1975). Besides uprights, own Fender 1994 J and 1983 P, and a 2005 4003 Fireglow. This 4003 W is made heirloom quality with amazing Rick sound and sustain. I play Fenders for a plink/plonk thump (not being critical) but play Rick's when you need a "piano Bass" with huge chord and arpeggio definition and that sustain you only get with a full length Maple neck. The Walnut on this makes the bass have a unique tone different than my Maple Fireglow and the neck is very, very fast. Prof/Advanced Bass players already have a Rick in their portfolio, you need one too. You won't believe it.

                                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                   
                                  4.0

                                  Great bass! Just add shielding and it's perfect

                                  By donny west

                                  from Long Island, NY

                                  About Me Professional Musician

                                  See all my reviews

                                  Verified Buyer

                                  Pros

                                  • Fun To Play
                                  • Good Feel
                                  • Good Tone

                                  Cons

                                    Best Uses

                                      Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                      Fantastic bass, it has the RIC sound you're looking for and is gorgeous. But...the 60 cycle single-coil hum was VERY loud on mine. So be prepared to line the pickup cavities and control cavity with shielding, such as copper tape. I also ran a ground wire from the copper tape to the back of a volume pot. Now the bass is dead-quiet!

                                      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                       
                                      5.0

                                      The Ric 4003W exceeded all my expectations!

                                      By James

                                      from undisclosed

                                      Verified Buyer

                                      Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                      Worth every penny. This bass exceeded my expectations with the quality of materials, craftsmanship and the wide range of sound. I have a lot of bass guitars and this one is by far my favorite. A lot of bass for the money!

                                      (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                                       
                                      5.0

                                      Unbelievable tone!!!

                                      By Dirty Vernon 420

                                      from Buffalo NY

                                      About Me Experienced

                                      Pros

                                      • Fun To Play
                                      • Good Feel
                                      • Good Pick Up
                                      • Good Tone
                                      • Solid Electronics

                                      Cons

                                        Best Uses

                                        • Jamming
                                        • Practicing
                                        • Recording
                                        • Rock Concerts
                                        • School Bands
                                        • Small Venues

                                        Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                        I own 9 basses but none of them sound like a Rick. I've been wanting one for years and the price was right. That being said, the tone on this thing is absolutely phenomenal!! From old Rush, Metallica, Yes, Motorhead...these guys used Ricks and I can see why! Holy ----! I haven't needed to use the stereo output, but it's cool to have that flexibility. It takes some getting used to the bar across the bridge pickup, but trust me, it's worth the effort to adjust your style with this bass!! Worth every red cent I paid!! Get one, you will not be disappointed!!

                                        (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                         
                                        5.0

                                        You should get this

                                        By Patrick

                                        from undisclosed

                                        Verified Buyer

                                        Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                        The best intstrument I have ever played, it was a little uncomfortable at first because I was use to a jazz bass neck and the ricks neck is a little bit bigger, but I got used to it and I couldn't be happier with it. The tone is incredible and it is a really easy and comfortable instrument to play and I would recommend everyone to get one

                                        (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                         
                                        5.0

                                        As cool as imagined.

                                        By Mike

                                        from Columbia, SC

                                        About Me Experienced

                                        See all my reviews

                                        Verified Buyer

                                        Pros

                                        • Fun To Play
                                        • Good Feel
                                        • Good Pick Up
                                        • Good Tone
                                        • Solid Electronics

                                        Cons

                                          Best Uses

                                          • Jamming
                                          • Practicing
                                          • Recording
                                          • Rock Concerts
                                          • Small Venues

                                          Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                          It's a warm and cool looking Ric.

                                           
                                          5.0

                                          Excellent USA bass. Better than Fender Jazz and Precision

                                          By BFM90

                                          from Virginia

                                          About Me Experienced

                                          Verified Buyer

                                          Pros

                                          • Fun To Play
                                          • Good Feel
                                          • Good Pick Up
                                          • Good Tone
                                          • Solid Electronics

                                          Cons

                                            Best Uses

                                            • Jamming
                                            • Practicing
                                            • Recording

                                            Comments about Rickenbacker 4003W:

                                            I've been playing bass on and off since the late 80's. I've owned Spector, Alvarez, Carvin, Ibanez, Fender, Dean, Steinberger basses. Rickenbacker bass encompasses tone for the type of bass player that likes a full, complete sound....highs, mids and lows. The Ric can compete with guitar frequencies and dominate the entire tonal spectrum. Bands like Tool, Yes and Rush are examples. I was never able to afford a Rickenbacker bass until now. Glad I made the purchase. The Carvin, Spector and Ibanez basses I've played in the past were nice, but not as good as the Rickenbacker.

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