Rickenbacker 360 - Any Experiences?

Psyfuzz

Member
Messages
1,372
Love the look of these guys and some of their sounds,

Anybody got any experiences with them and any feedback on how they perform at gigs/recording etc?

cheers guys

 
Messages
11,597
I love them, but ended up with a 330 because it was cheaper and I'm not into bindings and such. But here's the truth about the Ric 300 series:

- The sparkle you're looking for comes from a compressor.
- Unless you're using the Ric-o-sound output properly, the 5th knob is redundant
- The R tailpiece is a bitch to restring. Use painter's tape and always bring a backup to gigs.
- Despite the double truss rod system, the necks are wonky. Even after 7 years, mine still needs adjustment with every restring. YMMV depending on climate and humidity.
- The pickups, even the hi-gain pickups, are incredibly low output. Use the aforementioned comp, or something like a ZVex SHO to help normalize the output with your other guitars.
- When everything is right, it's the best guitar in the known universe.
 
Messages
2,574
I have a 360 and a 330. Every Ric I have played has a different sort of feel than most other guitars and it takes some getting used to. As much as I love Rics I have to admit though that a telecaster through a JangleBox (and probably any other compressor) gives a lot of that beautiful chimey sound. It might not sound EXACTLY like a Ric but it has that overall sound and it's great in its own right. You can especially get that sound if you play a Tele + compressor through an amp with a Celestion Blue speaker.

Gratuitous Ric rock:
 

custom53

Member
Messages
4,746
I had a 360 just like the picture.. Still regret selling it.. I loved how it played..! Never did play it out live.. But in our practice space it sounded awesome.
But, that being said, it just didn't quite fit the style of music we were playing at the time.. Mostly '80s Hair Metal.. But still wish I kept it..

 

Psyfuzz

Member
Messages
1,372
I had a 360 just like the picture.. Still regret selling it.. I loved how it played..!

Very nice,

Thanks for all the advice guys. I played one in a store a while ago and loved it, it felt like an real instrument if you get me. Serious bit of kit, I know people knock the necks but I can't remember having any grief with it. Was just knocked back by great it sounded.
 

claudel

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,547
Some people find the pencil necks difficult to play.

It's possible to cut a nut that gives a bit more finger space.

I had that done to mine and it helped a lot as far as playability for the fat fingered goes.

I've done that mod to other guitars as well.


They do sound amazing.
 

Rusty G.

Member
Messages
3,144
I've got two Ric 360's. The necks are thin, but you should be able to deal with it. They record very nice and seem to have a mid-range hump that cuts through a mix. I play mine through a Matchless Dc30, and is true classic rock tone. I even drop D tune them for a different sound. As for compressor, I use a Keeley.
 

Rumble

Instrumental Rocker
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,517
Have an '87 and I love it, the pickups rock (single-coil type).

Get one, and you might get the reaction this guy's getting:

 
Messages
6,838
I love them, but ended up with a 330 because it was cheaper and I'm not into bindings and such. But here's the truth about the Ric 300 series:

- The sparkle you're looking for comes from a compressor.
- Unless you're using the Ric-o-sound output properly, the 5th knob is redundant
- The R tailpiece is a bitch to restring. Use painter's tape and always bring a backup to gigs.
- Despite the double truss rod system, the necks are wonky. Even after 7 years, mine still needs adjustment with every restring. YMMV depending on climate and humidity.
- The pickups, even the hi-gain pickups, are incredibly low output. Use the aforementioned comp, or something like a ZVex SHO to help normalize the output with your other guitars.
- When everything is right, it's the best guitar in the known universe.
lol

Sounds like a lot of work and hassle hoping for a sunny day.
 

dirk_benedict

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,465
I had a 360/6 that was my main gigging guitar for a band that I fronted for a few years. "Hi-gain" pickups. It wasn't the typical classic-rock/Petty type thing...it sounded awesome/recorded awesome (happy to send you some clips if you like).

I've had a 360/12 now that is the prettiest piece of room art I've ever owned! Sounds awesome, but I have two young kids at home and other guitars that don't take 45minutes to tune, so I those play instead. In all seriousness though, it's not really the grab-n-go type axe, but if you can get it tuned up, etc it's a pretty glorious sound.

I found the setup quirks with my 360 to be pretty minimal compared to the 12. But I think most of the criticisms with Rics are justified. Not the best axe for shredding solos, neck is "uncomfortable" coming from a typical Fender. But they are a guitar that is specifically not a strat or a Les Paul, so if you get one, you'll have a better experience if you just embrace the differences for what they are.
 
Messages
11,597
lol

Sounds like a lot of work and hassle hoping for a sunny day.
Not really. It's a slight adjustment with every string change and I bring a backup to every gig anyway. I do use a ZVex SHO as a buffer, though I never use compressors. I also rewired it so the 5th knob is now a master volume. These were my preferences and the guitar plays exactly how I want it to.
 

sliberty

Member
Messages
3,969
Every guitar has quirks. Ex: many fenders fret out and choke when bending the high strings up high on the neck unless you raise the action sky high. And Strat pickups are pretty low output. And some Strats have problems with the G string popping out of the nut when you bend at low frets due to no headstock angle. Jazzmasters ad Mustangs had bridge problems. SG's and Double cut Juniors frequently end up with broken heads or necks. Many Gibsons have string binding problems at the nut due to the severe headstock angle. I could go on and on.

All of the Ric negatives listed above are valid, but when you look at them all in a row, it gives the wrong impression. Rics are great guitars, fun to play, and glorious to hear.

Like any guitar, you have to embrace what it is, not wish it was something different. Don't try to play a Strat like you play a LP. And don't expect a Ric to do the things that other guitars do.

I have a 330/12, and love it. I don't get to play it as much as I'd like, and as a result, I think about selling it. But I know I will be sorry, and so far, I have resisted. I'd love to get a 330/6 though, as i know that guitar would get some serious play time. I prefer the look of the 330's probably because I am a huge Who fan, and there was a photo of Townshend with a 330 in Live at Leeds (might actually have been one of those British export 360's, but it is the shape of a modern 330 anyway).
 

samdjr74

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,840
I had one for a little while. Great guitar, I liked it so much I bought a 370. I really can't say anything bad about the 360 but at the end I sold it to buy a 330 which I like much better. Mostly because of the shape and dressed down look.
 

james...

Member
Messages
2,800
Not a knock against the RIC but if you have big hands, probably stay away. It's just the nature of the beast.

I have seen a lot of guys in different genres play Rics and all had fairly small hands and all had great tone.

Random RIC story... When I was a teenager not too many years ago I went on one of those weekend church retreats and the band playing was actually very good. Anyway, the guitar player was using a RIC 360 through 4 or 5 pedals into an OLD Fender Champ 1x12. To this day that tone still haunts me. I have heard a lot of really good guitar players in and out of that genre, but the sounds that guy got out of a RIC + Champ + DD20 were HUGE. I remember talking to him about his tone and he just kind of shrugged. This was a couple of years before the low watt combo craze really started to set in, so I was baffled. Just goes to show how much you can do with very little.
 

blaster

Member
Messages
1,254
I had a 360 for years and sold it about 2 years ago. I regret selling it, but I didn't play it as much as my others (LP, Strat, Tele). The neck wasn't my favorite, but it was still pleasant to play. I loved the way it sounded and looked. They are killer guitars.
 

joejazzguitar

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,144
Mine has toasters and is set up with Pyramid flatwounds.... plug that puppy into a Vox and it'll take ya right back to 1968....

Seriously - the hi-gains totally change the tone of that guitar, and the flatwounds are a must if you're trying to capture the circa '60's Ric tone.....
 

rastus

Member
Messages
1,531
I had a 67 365, lovely guitar, but the neck was small-ish. Wound up selling it after acquiring my current Ric 6 string, a 65 330, that has a nice medium profile and a wider feeling board. Tremendous guitar, stable as a rock. I have owned a 456/12 convertible for years now, nice big neck, sounds flat-out amazing. Again, very stable.

As to newer ones, I just had a 2001 360/12 through my shop, neck was plenty ample, the high gains sounded fine-Could find nothing that was not to like about it. It also sold rather quickly, at the asking price. Cheers to that one!
 

kiki_90291

Member
Messages
4,211
I think the big hands thing is really blown out of proportion. There's no doubt that the neck has some odd dimensions, but if you play it regularly, you adapt just fine. I sold my first Ric because I convinced myself that the neck was too small - I wound up missing it so much, I bought another and just committed to playing only the Ric for about a year (I think you could do less - I just don't get to play that much). Now I switch between my Ric and an SG without any issues.
 

Psyfuzz

Member
Messages
1,372
I think the big hands thing is really blown out of proportion. There's no doubt that the neck has some odd dimensions, but if you play it regularly, you adapt just fine. I sold my first Ric because I convinced myself that the neck was too small - I wound up missing it so much, I bought another and just committed to playing only the Ric for about a year (I think you could do less - I just don't get to play that much). Now I switch between my Ric and an SG without any issues.
I suppose, I've never had difficulty switching between different necks before - even just grabbing a completely alien guitar I'm pretty decent at playing it straight away, I've never come across a non-broken neck that was completely unplayable for me. Becoming more familiar the more I'd play it would make things much easier.
 




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