Price paid: $ 750
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Features: Made in South Korea in 2009
Set 3 pc. Mahogany Neck w/ Ultra Access
24 Jumbo Frets
Mother of Pearl "Split Crown" Inlays
Chrome Covered Active EMG 81/85
2 Vol Knobs, 1 Tone Knob, 3-Way P.U. Selector
Tone Pros System Bridge
Graph Tech Nut
Grover Tuners with Pearl Buttons
Gloss Black Finish
Features are really outstanding for the price, I challenge you to find a better value. The EMG's lived up to their reputation, the Ultra access neck Killer for soloing and makes it easy to utilize the 24 fret range. Controls were standard, nothing outstanding but didn't disappoint. When viewing the guitar online before I bought it the finish didn't really stand out to me (it was the only one this guitar came in) but in person it looks fantastic- dark yet somewhat classy. The body style is also really cool, one of the better interpretations of the Les Paul that I have seen. The bridge is fine, not awesome but I specifically chose it over a model with a tremolo (because I Switch tunings often), so it's what I expected. Ebony fretboard is crisp and fast.
All-in-all I'm very pleased with the features. They aren't all totally top-notch, but any upgrade is going to cost you at least $250 more. // 9
Sound: I play mostly heavy music (hardcore, metalcore, death metal), and this guitar certainly fits that genre. I play it through either a Vox VT-30 or a solid state Marshall half-stack (I can't recall the exact model, it's an older one), and pedals I use include BOSS: Metal Zone MT-2, Overdrive OD-3, and Digital Delay DD-3.
In middle position it has a great balanced sound and is good for both heavy chugging riffs as well as hot licks. I use the neck position for super heavy low parts that range mostly on the 6th string and lower frets. The bridge position is thinner but harnesses the more old-school dirty metal sound for nice tone-packed licks and squealing pinches.
One thing however is that the tone of the guitar is very dark. This is great for many heavy styles, however there are times when I'm playing a particular part and wishing it were brighter. You can compensate with the guitar's controls as well as amp settings, but you still won't get it to Shine like some guitars.
Furthermore, on clean channels I sometimes get fuzz when playing on higher volumes. This isn't a problem with the guitar, it's the nature of the high output EMG's, however it's certainly something to take note of. Then again, I've been told that playing through a noise gate could help solve this problem. // 8
Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was set-up great. The action was just to my liking (low, but not too low), and the pickups were perfectly adjusted. Everything was satisfactory. I'm giving this an 8 because it's not something that I think is uniquely good about this guitar, set-ups are generally pretty good these days especially for Schecters. // 8
Reliability & Durability: This guitar is definitely reliable. The hardware is good quality and will last a long time without excess abuse. The strap buttons are no exception. I have used it live without a backup and not been nervous at all, this baby's built to last. Also the finish has been flawless, even with some careless bangs on my part. // 9
Overall Impression: This is definitely a great guitar for anyone who plays heavy music but still demands some versatility. I've been playing for 3 years, this being my third and favorite guitar out of a Vantage strat-copy and a B.C. Rich Warlock. I did months of research and consideration prior to this purchase. Other guitars that I looked at included ESP/LTD models, Jackson guitars, Ibanez, as well as a custom Gibson Longhorn w/ EMG's. I wouldn't replace this guitar with any of the those brands at the same price. If it were stolen or lost I would be very angry, but definitely buy another one (or a similar one, seeing as it's a limited model). For the price there really is no better guitar in my opinion. The step-up from this would probably be one of the more expensive ESP's, Jackson's, or Prestige Ibanez. Even among those guitars, this axe demands respect. // 9