#1
Hi guys!

I am thinking if buying the Synyster Gates Custum-S guitar but see that there are some changes with the old and new ones. I haven't tried any of them but the old guitars in gloss black/silver, black/gold, black/red, white/gold etc all have lacquered neck (back of the neck, that is). Right?

But the new ones in 2016 in satin/gold burst and satin/dark earth burst are all have satin neck. Right?

There are some other differences too with a thinner neck in the new ones (Ultra Thin C, instead of just Thin C). With all sliding up and down Syn does I find it strange that the original old guitar have lacquered back which makes sliding less effectively than the satin back.

Does any of you have experience in both guitars and can give me some guidance in which to buy? I really want the old gloss black/silver, but I don't want it to be cumbersome. Anyone, I appreciate your help! 
#2
Guitarist tastes change all the time. Or perhaps the change was made due to popular customer demand.

I've played the older Schecter Syn Custom guitars with the thicker gloss neck (no Schecter has a lacquered neck btw. All of them have polyester for gloss finishes and polyurethane for satin. Lacquer is in reference to how the finish adheres to the guitar, not the surface texture of the finish itself) and I didn't really care for it honestly. I thought it was overpriced and the finish had the same thick plasticy feel that many other Schecters have. The Invader pickups were very muddy and I just thought the guitar looked ghastly aesthetically.

I thought the neck profile was a bit on the thicker side for what is stereotypical for a 'metal' guitar, but it wasn't something that bothered me. I can get on with almost any profile of guitar neck for shredding, though some conform to the profile of my hand better than others.

Something you need to bear in mind is that satin finished guitars do not keep their satin texture forever. Some guitars wear out their satin finish to a gloss very quickly. In which case you need to re-satin the neck with some fine sandpaper.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#3
Thank you very much for your answer T00DEEPBLUE! Thank you also for clarifying about the gloss and that it is not lacquer on the neck. 
I am still curious about the guitar and will keep thinking of my purchase...
#4
No offense but those things are ugly AF IMO.

Satin necks will be faster than poly and thickness comes down to preference, I too am not a fan of the Duncan Invader pickups (most here are not) unless you are just really a big fan of the artist or that particular guitar personally I'd look into something else.

You gotta remember that a guitar like that will appeal to a limited amount of people and my make it difficult to sell-on in the future.

To be fair in spite of my dislike for the aestetic of that guitar I have a couple myself that some consider to be ugly:



"A well-wound coil is a well-wound coil regardless if it's wound with professional equipment, or if somebody's great-grandmother winds it to an old French recipe with Napoleon's modified coffee grinder and chops off the wire after a mile with an antique guillotine!"
- Bill Lawrence

Come and be with me
Live my twisted dream
Pro devoted pledge
Time for primal concrete sledge

#5
Quote by ardbank
Thank you very much for your answer T00DEEPBLUE! Thank you also for clarifying about the gloss and that it is not lacquer on the neck. 
I am still curious about the guitar and will keep thinking of my purchase...

Evilnine does make a good point that the aesthetic of the Syn guitars means they have a very poor resale value and are a hard sell in general.

I know that obviously selling the guitar in the future is not normally on people's minds when they intend to buy it. But it's worth thinking about when you're talking about a guitar that has such a brash aesthetic that you may grow tired of, and then find that nobody wants it for the exact same reason you're selling it.

If you really are going to buy one, I would suggest having that return policy at the ready. Because if you don't like it after the return policy expires, you're going to be pretty darn stuck with it.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#6
Thank you also Evilnine for your advice! You are absolutely right that it will be hard to sell of some day... 

I am actually a huge A7X fan for many years, and also admire Syn for his skills and play style. I am looking for that feeling of playing their songs with his signature guitar (I only play by my self, no band or concerts). 
I know many here disagree with me, but that's just the fun with music. Otherwise it would be really crowded at their concerts... 

PS. I think your guitars are beautiful.
#7
ardbank About a decade ago I had one of the first Syn models, and they're not bad guitars necessarily, but I'd advise you use caution and think things over before buying. I can confirm firsthand some of the "cons" mentioned already in this thread.

I was in my late teen years when I bought the guitar, and admittedly a pretty big fan of Gates/A7X at the time as they were one of the bands that opened the doors to modern "metal" to me. It's perfectly normal for us to want to emulate our idols, however, it's very important to keep in mind that you aren't actually that person and your playing style and preferences might differ widely - and to emulate your favorite guitarists tone you don't need to use the exact gear they use. I had that guitar for a year or two, then ended up trading it because over time it became apparent it just didn't mesh with my style and preferences as well as I'd hoped.

Aside from other factors, some of which were mentioned in previous comments such as the neck profile and the re-sale market for such a guitar, I want to touch on a couple of things. First, the pickups...well, I'm not a fan. The Invaders are notoriously muddy, don't cut through that well (IMO), and overall just aren't very versatile. You do not need Invaders to get a tone like Gates'. If you already are using an amp (or even a decent pedal) that provides high amounts of gain, you do not need an super-high-output pickup.

Next, just a critique on Gates' tone in general (but something you should be aware of) - his lead sound is not all that good (IMO) and over-compressed to hell. In every solo on every song of every album of theirs I can recall off-hand, his lead tone is the exact same and is compressed to the point where there's no dynamics. Now, I'd imagine part of this could be to compensate for a light pick attack, however, his tone takes it to the extreme. FWIW, compression can also help to mask sloppy playing to a certain extent, too.

To be completely honest with you, from strictly a guitar-based perspective, you can get a better guitar that will benefit you as a player more in the long term for the same price as the Syn model (if not less) AND still be able to get the type of tone you'd want when playing A7X tunes. This is especially true if you aspire to play in a band at some point.

However, whereas I'm a gigging/writing musician, you might be content playing along with songs you like in your bedroom for fun and not have any interest in joining a band - and that's perfectly fine, to each their own. If playing A7X songs with a Syn model in your room is the extent of what you want to do with music, then who am I to disparage you from doing what you like just because it isn't the same objectives I have with music.

That said, again, I advise you thinking this over and making sure it's what you want before pulling the trigger on a purchase. The fact of the matter is that (and I'm assuming you're younger than I am, considering literally everyone I've seen with this is younger than me as I near 30) as you age your taste is music is likely to change, as will your playing. An item like this is somewhat of a "novelty" and is aesthetically very identifiable to one band - and tonally is limited, too. I know personally had I not traded mine, I'd feel kind of silly being stuck with the guitar as I don't play music anywhere near what they do (and haven't in a long time) and because I've grown over time to prefer more traditional body shapes.

Please don't take any of this negatively, I promise I'm not some crotchety old prick trying to take a dump on someone's favorite band or guitarist. This is all simply advice I wish someone would have given me before I purchased mine years ago.
Quote by Zeppelin71
Umm. . .uh. . .your mom touched sjones' dick. YOUR MOM TOUCHED OUR GUITARISTS GENITALS IN A CAMPER AT A BIKER FESTIVAL! truth.
Last edited by sjones at Apr 19, 2017,
#8
sjones You give me very wise advice here and I thank you for that! You are so right about everything, things in life change over time and few things last forewer.

I am actually 37 and have three other guitars: Schecter Blackjack SLS C-1 FR, Epiphone LP Prophecy GX and Epiphone LP Standard. I have an office job and a family so my dream of being a rockstar are looking slim these days... But at evenings after I've put my kids to sleep I turn into a rockstar in my home office where I keep my guitars and gear. It's almost like a reality escape and that is why I am looking at Syn's guitar, it's just for the feeling and look for my self. 

The Schecter Blackjack SLS I have is great and I feel trust for the brand. So the Syn would complement the other guitars if I where to purchase it.

Thank you all again for your kind advice and thoughts!
#9
ardbank No problem! I hope I could provide a little insight. Lol, and how about me assuming age and whiffing (you know what they say about assuming, haha).

In your situation, seeing as you obviously have some other guitars to reach for and there's no concerns about gigging, that really wipes out a good amount of "cons" I'd have against buying one.

The biggest concern you still have is re-sale or finding a trade partner, should you decide to move away from it, but still, that's less of a concern for someone in a hobbyist situation who has a few guitars than it would be for someone whose a gigging musician who only has maybe a couple guitars and cash strapped.

Aside from the Invaders, functionally I can't complain about the one I had other than it just wasn't my thing (p'ups, neck was pretty wide/fat, I don't use a Floyd so it was more hassle than help).
Quote by Zeppelin71
Umm. . .uh. . .your mom touched sjones' dick. YOUR MOM TOUCHED OUR GUITARISTS GENITALS IN A CAMPER AT A BIKER FESTIVAL! truth.
#10
sjones  It's not easy to estimate someone's age, haha! Thank you again for your thoughts, I will continue to think about all considerations before I make my choice.
#11
Quote by ardbank
Thank you also Evilnine for your advice! You are absolutely right that it will be hard to sell of some day... 

I am actually a huge A7X fan for many years, and also admire Syn for his skills and play style. I am looking for that feeling of playing their songs with his signature guitar (I only play by my self, no band or concerts). 
I know many here disagree with me, but that's just the fun with music. Otherwise it would be really crowded at their concerts... 

PS. I think your guitars are beautiful.


First off thanks for complimenting my less than typical guitars!

I, like many others here, usually try to avoid artist signature guitars for several reasons:

1.) The artist's name will often result in a higher price on an instrument and a non-sig guitar of the same caliber would typically cost less.

2.) In spite of the higher price of the new sig guitar they will more often than not be more difficult to sell-on and often carry less value on the used market than the same model that is not a signature.

3.) They are taylored to that artist's specs, not necessarily bad if your interested in those specs.

4.) Signature guitars often appeal to younger guitarists who wish to mimic their heroes but may find later that it is better to find your own style/tone and again are harder to sell-on due to the limited amount of people that would be interested.

The B.C.Rich that I posted is actually a Kerry King model which is why it is called KKBEASTV, Kerry thought putting the front part of a Beast on a Speed V would look good but it is not really a signature model because he doesn't play them. The neck through model that I have was only made for one year IIRC and likely discontinued due to slow sales.
"A well-wound coil is a well-wound coil regardless if it's wound with professional equipment, or if somebody's great-grandmother winds it to an old French recipe with Napoleon's modified coffee grinder and chops off the wire after a mile with an antique guillotine!"
- Bill Lawrence

Come and be with me
Live my twisted dream
Pro devoted pledge
Time for primal concrete sledge

#12
I bought the original Standard model used about 8 years ago (black/silver, Duncan Designed pups, LFR, bolt-on neck, stained rosewood fretboard).  I was a little younger than you at the time.  It was my fifth or sixth guitar and now I have eleven, including a Blackjack ATX I picked up recently.  I got both Schecters in pawn shops for $300 each.  Neither were on the walls at either pawn shop for long.

I still play the Syn often--it's the only Floyd guitar I keep in drop D (the Blackjack is set up for drop C).  But I never gigged with it.

First thing I did with it was replace the bridge pup with a real Invader.  I A/B'd it with several Customs since then and you can't hear a difference, except they sustain longer and resonate better due to the OFR.  Next I retrofitted the neck with a Sustainiac.

Although the fretboard started out black, over the years, the stain has come out during fretboard hydration efforts and is now a dark brown--you might have that problem a bit with the Custom even though it's ebony--my Blackjack lost some black the first time I hyrdated the ebony on it (cleaned w/naptha, followed up w/Howard Feed-N-Wax).  

The guitar stayed in tune perfectly between string changes for about 5 years, then grooves formed in the saddles and it wouldn't stay in tune, so I dropped in an OFR and that made a huge difference.  Now it sustains about 30% longer and resonates a lot better.  Even with the bolt on neck, you can't hear a difference between it and a Custom since it's gotten the German-made OFR.

I'm one of the few that like the Invaders--I gigged for years with the old Duncan Design bridge pup in a Strat, and only recently replaced that with a real Invader since it had gone microphonic.  I even had Fender use an Invader in the bridge of a Strat they built for me.  I can't hear a difference in alder or mahogany guitars, but they do sound better with steel or brass trem blocks than with zinc blocks.  I have Invaders in 3 guitars.  My other humbucker guitars have D-Activators and other hot Dimarzios, or Duncan Black-outs.  Maybe I compensate with the presence control on my amp because my few single-coil guitars sound shrill until I dial a tone in for them--so I rarely use them anymore.

I've seen a lot of used Syn guitars in stores, but never the same one two visits in a row.  They don't hold their values well, but then again no Schecter does.  But they do tend to move fast in my experience.  I bought mine on the day I went in to buy a Jackson that had been there so long it had been discounted 50%, but couldn't walk away from the when I saw it out of the corner of my eye.

The Sustainiac is a lot of fun, but a Digitech Freqout could be more up your alley--depends on what your priorities.  I don't regret it, but I don't use it much, and get all the feedback I want on other guitars with OD and compression effects.  Maybe you wouldn't want to do ebow-type stuff or play with feedback and don't need any of that.

The best reason (in my opinion) to get a Syn is it's a cheap way to get an Avenger with the ebony fretboard, the horned headstock, and the flat top.  I'm not a fan of the regular carved top Avengers, but I love the shape of the Syn, even if the stripes are tacky.  If it really bothered my, I'd have Pat Wilkins (out in LA) strip it and paint it.   He did the paint on my one-off Strat and he did a poly satin clearcoat on the maple and a poly satin black on the body.  I have poly necks on both Schecters, an Ibanez, a travel guitar, and an accoustic.  They don't bother me any more than the clear poly on most of my other guitars, but I do prefer the satin on the one Strat.  Not enough to scuff up the other necks or get them re-finished.  It's a very subtle difference for me; even more subtle than the neck shape or a compound radius.

Just my $.02 for some counterpoint to the typical UG user's perspective.  Good luck with your next acquisition, whatever it may be.  
#13
SpeedSterHR Thank you very much for your thoughts, I truly appreciate all of your wise words from all posters here on my topic. And even if most of you advice against me buying the guitar it will still be my decision if I choose to buy it after weighting all the argument.

I have red a lot of comments and reviews on the guitar sites and watched YouTube clips etc and at this time I am still leaning towards a purchase but are worried about two things. The thickness of the neck (Thin C) and that it has a glossed surface. 

As mentioned by me earlier I have a Schecter Blackjack SLS with an Ultra Thin C neck and satin surface. I find this very comfortable and somewhere wish that this Syn guitar in black/silver stripes had it (as the 2016 models in the other colors have). But what is the point of buying a new guitar if it is almost the same as the one you already have??

The Syn has 14" fret radius while the Blackjack has a compound radius of 12"-16". So it will differ there too, but I am not that certain of what is best of them? It's probably down to personal preferenc. Man, this is hard...
#14
You're right, it is personal preference.  My one-off Strat has a compound radius of 9.5 - 14, but the two reasons I prefer it to my retail-bought strats with 9.5" necks are the satin urethane finish and (more importantly) the larger frets (tall-medium).  The compound radius is such a subtle difference--after having one for a few years now, here's my position on them:  If spec'ing out a custom guitar, I'd get it, but I wouldn't let it stop me from buying an existing guitar.  My Ibanezes and Schecters have flat boards with large frets, but I still play my Mustang re-issue with it's 24" scale, short frets, and the 7.25" radius.  The short frets bother me more than anything on the Mustang, but the useless trem and single coil pups are what keep it on a rack in the corner instead of a stand within arm's reach.  I really haven't found neck thickness to be an issue, other than the baseball bat necks on some Zack Wyld guitars felt ridiculous; not sure that it would affect my playing though.

The neck finish matters to some more than others.  You can always scuff it up with a scotchbrite pad.  And if you really don't like it, you can send it to a reputable guitar painter and have it re-finished with satin urethane (or maybe just sprayed on top of the original finish).  Shouldn't cost more than $250.
#15
I've had a Synyster Special now for probably 5 years and I dont see myself getting rid of it anytime soon. They're discontinued but you can find em on the used market. It has a set neck with gloss finish, contoured body, FR1000, Widow Headstock, and Gloss Black with cream binding and MOP cross fret inlays. NO bar code paint job and his name isn't plastered across the neck. Its still his signature model, tho you wouldn't know unless you looked at the name on the back of the headstock. I tossed the invader pickups and put in a set of ZW sigs. Synyster Special & Synyster Deluxe (bolt on neck) will get you what you want w/o looking like an A7X groupie/fanboy.
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