SL1 Soloist Review

manufacturer: Jackson date: 01/05/2008 category: Electric Guitars
Jackson: SL1 Soloist
It's built to handle hard lives on the road, and are ready to take whatever players will throw at them, that's the just the way it is, and Jackson won't have it any other way.
 Sound: 9.5
 Overall Impression: 10
 Reliability & Durability: 10
 Action, Fit & Finish: 9.5
 Features: 9.5
 Overall rating:
 9.3 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.7 
 Users rating:
 8.9 
 Votes:
 39 
reviews (2) pictures (1) 21 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.8
SL1 Soloist Reviewed by: The Mass Debate, on january 05, 2008
3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Features: I am reviewing a 2007 model Jackson SL1. In my opinion it's a great guitar for what I payed. The Guitar is made in the USA. It has a 24 fret maple neck with an ebony fret board with mother of pearl shark fin inlays. Also forgot to mention the guitar is neck thru. The body is made of alder and they offer flame maple or plain colour finishes. The neck is thin and has great upper fret access, I can comfortably reach all 24 frets on the bottom 4 strings. With a little bit of effort you can reach the 21-24 frets on the top two strings but to be honest I don't use them often enough for it to bother me. The body style is similar to a Strat but the plate is in the back so there is no pick guard. It has an Original Floyd Rose tremolo bridge. I've had no problems from the bridge and it stays in tune very well. As long as I don't go crazy on the whammy bar it stays in tune for about a weeks worth of regular playing. For pickups There is a Seymour Duncan JB TB4 in the bridge position which is a regular sized humbucker. In the middle and neck positions are Seymour Duncan Classic Stack pickups which are single coil sized humbuckers. Both types of pickups are passive. There is a master volume and master tone control and a 5 way Switch. The tuners are Jackson tuners but with the floyd you have a locking knut. A case is included with this guitar. I have no complaints about it's features and it's well built. I've had this guitar for about 4 months now and have experienced no problems at all. // 10

Sound: In my opinion this guitar can deliver a variety of different sounds. In the bridge position is the JB you can get a pretty decent distortion sound for rock music. You can play metal on this guitar but in my opinion it's not it's strong point. If you do want to play metal on this I would recommend swapping out the bridge pickup to something that better suits your needs. As for the cleans they are decent but whenever I'm playing clean I just use the neck pickup anyways. I'm not that great at describing tone but I would say this pickup has a sort of sharp sound, not very smooth. I'll be honest I don't use the middle position very much but it gives a similar tone to the neck position since it's the same kind of pickup just in a different position so read that for reference. In the neck position is a classic stack. This pickups strong point is in it's cleans in my opinion. It gives a nice warm tone which is very clear and smooth. If you use light distortion with low gain this pickup can get a nice sort of classic rock sound. But if you try to get heavier distortion out of it the sound you will get won't be good. I am currently using a Randall RG75D combo amp and for effects I use a POD 2.0 and am happy with the sound I get from it. This guitar isn't very noisy I don't get much feedback from it while it's plugged in and not being played at any volumes. This guitar has a bright, full sound. If you're looking for a guitar with versatility to be able to play different styles this is for you. If you want something that is specifically made for one genre this is not the guitar for you. This guitar suits my playing style well, it lets me Switch between playing classic rock to metal to blues as needed and gives a decent sound in all. It does not specialize in any genre in my opinion, it's more of an all around guitar. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: On mine the action was set up very well but the credit for that goes to the store I bought it from since the owner set it up to my liking for me. The pickups were set up well but again credit for that goes to the store owner and not the manufacturer. The bridge was routed properly and no damage or flaws. When buying a guitar you should always have it properly set up if you are not able to do it yourself. I am not capable of doing it myself and am very grateful that I received a free set up with my purchase. // 10

Reliability & Durability: For the 4 months I've had this guitar I have had no problems. I've never played Live with it I just play at home as a hobby. It seems like a well built guitar that could stand gigging. You will probably want to put strap locks on even tho the stock strap holders are decent, you don't really want to take a chance. The finish is very good quality, one of the most beautiful flame maple finishes I've seen. It seems like a thick finish that won't wear out very easily. As I mentioned I've only had this guitar 4 months so this is about all the information I can give about it's reliability and durability. Sorry I can't be more helpful in this section. // 10

Overall Impression: The majority of music I play is either classic rock or metal and it's a good half way point between the two. I've been playing guitar for about 3 years. I'm happy with this guitar and if it were lost or stolen I would probably buy another the only thing I would do different is get one with a fixed bridge instead of a Floyd, but that's just my personal preference. The Floyd was fun for the first few weeks but I barely use the whammy bar anymore so changing the strings and tuning is annoying. I love the diversity in the tones available from it, in my opinion that's it's strongest feature. Only thing I dislike is the painted neck but it's a sacrifice You have to make if you want a neck thru or set in guitar. I compared it to a few Ibanez and Fender guitars, and I liked this one the best. I hope this review was helpful, thanks for reading. // 10

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overall: 9.6
SL1 Soloist Reviewed by: Hillside_Loafer, on april 17, 2006
1 of 3 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 441

Purchased from: jam.se

Features: It's a Japanese made model of the SL1 Solois guitar (Dinky type). I don't know which year it was made of the original price, I bought it used. There are some differences from the American version. This guitar has a 5-way selector, 1 volume and 1 tone knob. 24 jumbo frets (rosewood fretboard I think) quite thin neck so it feel good playing it, floyd rose tremolo. // 9

Sound: Jackson guitars usually have a more 'metal sound' they say, and this doesnt seem to be an exception. With the amplifier I tried in the store I fell in love instantly in this guitar. It sounded really nice I thought. But with the amplifier I bought along with it (Peavey Rage 158 crap amp) it doesn't sound nearly as good. But with a distortion pedal I think that will work out! I cant complain on the sound at all actually, makes very good sound on almost all types of riffs. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: I bought this used in a music store, so it was all set up, they had polished it up since the last owner and it still is nice and shiny after a few weeks of intensive playing. The sunburst finish had one scratch on the backside of the guitar, but it's hardly noticable and doesn't affect the playing at all, so I don't care. It was all set up and ready to play. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I can't feel or sense any upcoming problem with this, it can take some bumps without any malfunction, I don't play any gigs. But I don't know what could happen to this guitar that could make it unplayable, I would no doubt use it to play a gig if that was the case and I would still feel pretty safe without a backup. There are lots of tiny scratches on the backside of it from being used, but that's only visible close up in the right light. I think it's got a few years behind it, and it still looks as good as new! // 10

Overall Impression: It's a very good metal guitar if you are to call it that. I really love the thin neck and the fretboard, what I felt is missing is on the Tremolo though, on a friends Ibanez guitar that had a floyd rose tremolo there were some knobs for fine-tuning down on the guitar, that would make it easier tuning with the tremolo in place. On the other hand, those knobs weren't very reliable since if you tapped them they would move out of place and make it go out of tune, so I guess I'm ok without them! What I thought is wierd is the fact that I had such problems identifying the guitar, since it was the Japanese model it wasnt all that easy. I haven't managed to find it on any larger instrument site either. If lost/stolen I would have a hard time buying a new one since I can't really find it. So I would start looking like crazy for it, since for that price it's hard to find a guitar that good! Hell this even got the tuning knobs on the upper part of the head, which I feel is 'right'. So I really like this one. // 10

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