SC90 Review

manufacturer: Carvin date: 12/17/2012 category: Electric Guitars
Carvin: SC90
The SC90 is, in a sense, Carvin's Les Paul, owing to its single-cutaway body, dual-humbucker configuration, 3-way toggle, and a pair of volume and tone controls.
 Sound: 9.3
 Overall Impression: 8
 Reliability & Durability: 8
 Action, Fit & Finish: 8
 Features: 9
 Overall rating:
 8.5 
 Reviewer rating:
 8.5 
 Users rating:
 8.5 
 Votes:
 8 
reviews (3) pictures (4) user comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.6
SC90 Reviewed by: thekevinfoltmer, on october 31, 2005
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1200

Purchased from: Carvin.com

Features: The Carvin SC90 was made in the USA in California. It has 24 frets and jumbo frets and it was made on an ebony fretboard. It comes with a solid top. The body is made out of Mahogony and the finish which you are able to customize was a flamed top. It has a cutaway body and active electronics. There is a volume, tone, 5-way selector, 2 coil taps, and a phaser. It comes just like all carvins with Sprezel locking tuners. // 9

Sound: This guitar fits my music style pretty decently mabee someone more into the metal scene would like it more but overall it fits my quite well. I use a Line 6 Spider II 120 watt and MXR Distortion Compressor and a Dunlop wah. It is rich and full sounding and the guitar has a wide amount of variety becuase of the coil taps. The coil taps alow it to sound like a Stratocaster and then on regular you can pretty much fit any style of music. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The action when I got my guitar was very low. The wood was pefectly cut, and all of the electronics worked well. // 8

Reliability & Durability: This guitar will withstand live playing I would know, I played with it. The hardware will last long and they come with strap locks allready in them and they are solidly put it. The finish is allright nothing special. // 8

Overall Impression: My overall impression on this guitar is that it is a pretty sweet guitar. When ever I play with my friends they allways tell me how nice it sounds and wuite the upgrade it is for me. I have been playing for 5 or 6 years. And if it was stolen I wouldn't buy it again becuase I'm not digging the locking tuners they put in. It makes the strings to hard to bend. // 8

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overall: 7
SC90 Reviewed by: mental_meltdown, on may 16, 2006
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Features: The SC90 is, in a sense, Carvin's Les Paul, owing to its single-cutaway body, dual-humbucker configuration, 3-way toggle, and a pair of volume and tone controls. A classic Paul, right? Wrong. Actually, the SC90 is a classic Carvin, having many of the same accouterments as their other models, including a neck-through-body construction, a 24-fret ebony fingerboard with an extra-flat 15" radius, a 25" scale, Sperzel tuners, a well-shielded electronics cavity, and an extra-slick finish. our test guitar came in a nice brown sunburst, as well as having sexy rounded sides, which is a $40 up-charge over the standard squared sides. The guitar came with a Tune-O-Matic bridge/stop tailpiece combination and Carvin's new C22 humbuckers, which feature one row of adjustable polepieces and one row of fixed "slugs" like a Vintage PAF. However there are 22 polepieces per pickup here, hence its name, and they give your strings a magnetic bath so you won't lose any signal during string bends. The body has alder wings attached to a neck-through section of maple. And I like this: According to the catalog, the action on the SC90 is guaranteed to be 1/16" off the fretboard. Alas, on the guitar I recieved, the strings were literally on the fingerboard when I opened it up, apparently the result of an usual packing error. // 9

Sound: The sound of the axe is also appealing to my rock. With an alder body, maple neck, and humbuckers, you're going to get a tone more like a Strat with stacked humbuckers than a mahogany-bodied/-necked Les Paul, despite the Gibsonesque body shape. This was especially evident in the center pickup position (i.e. both 'buckers on), where the tone was definitely twangier than the nasally honk of a Les Paul in the same position. Again, this is a Les Paul in shape only, and if yuo want true LP fatness, go buy a Paul. The tone on this SC90 can best be summed up as fat twang. I could especially see blues, roots-rock, and country players digging it. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Mine was not factory direct. My buddy says it was tuned and everything factory direct. // 6

Reliability & Durability: The Carvin will withstand an playing even if it is misused. The strap buttons are solid, the hardware lasts, and the finish is thick and indulgent. I never need a backup when I use my Carvin due to the fact that it is dependable. // 6

Overall Impression: It shouldn't be any surprise that a lot of Carvin endorsers are chopmeisters, either being chicken-pickin' country wizards, fusioneer, or shredders; then again, the Monkees play 'em, too. Some players complain that Carvin necks tend to need more tweaking than your average electric, but that's a personal matter between you and your truss-rod wrench. In any case, I recommend everyone try an SC90, at least for the opportunity to grope one of the company's fast, smooth heeled necks. // 6

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overall: 9.8
SC90 Reviewed by: T4D, on december 17, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 350

Purchased from: ebay

Features: I think mine is a 2008 model USA made I purchased from eBay jumbo fret neck thru body with Wilkinson tremolo, I put EMG pickups in 81 and 60 (sorry I'm a active pick guy but I did keep the Carvin pickup's they where good but not EMG's). some think this is a Carvin Les Paul but I have to disagree yes some features of a Les Paul are here But it's very much has it's own wonderful feel that is very different to a Les Paul, fast neck, low action, flexible controls (having Les Paul controls) the just feel like a Carvin it's a joy to play has a nice warm tone and sustain is very good (due to the neck thru body I think) a very well made guitar. // 9

Sound: Well after I put in EMG pickups in my guitar collection this is a middle of the road guitar for me. The EMG 60 in the neck position really suit this guitar giving a warm well round tone getting good jazz tone is no problem, EMG 81 in the bridge is hotter but the body wood still give a nice well rounded sound a solid thicker smooth tone come from this Carvin with EMG pickups. The tone of the wood and neck thru construction has clearly given this guitar long sustain and warm clear overtones, one of the best guitars I have in relation to "sound of the guitar" itself. I play thru mainly thru a computer VST plugins (amp farm, GTR, Guitar Rig, Amplutube etc) live JCM 900 and Carvin power amp driving 4 Marshall cabs and a Line 6 X3 Live and RP350. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: I got this second hand from eBay and the action and feel was pretty good when I got it. After a pickup change and dealing with the electrics I have I say it was very well built inside too. I normally change tuning machine if there is any cheap or roughness to how they feel but I have kept the original Carvin tuners in place. The action is very low, chords a easy to play and it's all is very well put together instrument, it's sits well when I stand up to play (I never sit when playing guitar). It's body shape is very well round no hard edges at all which is nice compared to say a Ibanez or even a Les Paul all up it feel great to play. // 10

Reliability & Durability: One of the best built guitars I have owned, solid on every level the Wilkinson tremolo. Stay in tune very well for a unlocking bridge the controls give great sound options. I put DiMarzio straps on all my guitars so no comment on the Carvin strap buttons. This guitar will always be in my gigging guitar list to take with me it's has not shown any sights of bad workmanship in any part of the build, everything show good original design at Carvin and I am looking forward to adding another Carvin guitar to my collection soon. // 10

Overall Impression: I've been playing for 24+ years I have had this guitar for 3 years and in that time I've played metal in some bands and blues in another and Jazz jaming in another this guitar goes to all of them and fits in well,. It's warm tone is strong enough to want to use it for when you need that type of tone. Best way to tell you how it's sounds is maybe talk about what it doesn't like. It does NOT have that glassy sound of a Strat totally opposite. It's has a warmth that not many other guitar have if do. If I lost this guitar I would be hunting for another to replaces it the very next day. It's better then my Les Paul Studio and many other guitars I have in this "warmth" department. What I dislike? Hmm it's hard to say but if pushed hard. Well I have to say the head stock looks a little "big and boxy" looking at the Carvin catalogue I prefer the Allan Holdsworth type head stock BUT if I had to purchased again I do not think I would worry about such cosmetic thing since the SC90 sounds and plays so well, the Allan Holdsworth may not give me all the things I like about the SC90. Maybe a custom order will be my next Carvin.

// 10

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