#1
Caught of wind of this guy and his super cheap guitars, specifically this one-
http://www.rondomusic.com/shadowmetallicred.html

the things like 130 bucks! anyways, has anyone bought/used a guitar from these guys (rondo music?)? is it a good deal or am i getting scammed, i've heard good reviews from folks who bought their bass guitars...

i've only been playing for a year now and i'm by no means a pro... just looking for a half decent guitar to practice on
Last edited by Verse34k at Nov 24, 2009,
#2
I have two guitars from them, one b eign a cheap 100 v, and its great as long as you know how to set it up. Action, neck relief, intonation and stuff like that, but as for the build quality its great, plus if you don't like it they have a great return policy.
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#3
Same observations as Joe's. Kurt is honest and runs a great outfit. I have several nice basses from Rondo. With the inexpensive Chinese instruments you might hit say a 1/3 return rate if you're picky, maybe a high fret, a funky neck, bad pot, whatever. And all of them require setting up. But given their return policy you'll be a happy camper in the end, fer shure.

Fedex just delivered me a $140 Douglas Shadow gold top Les Paul. I'm saddened by the fact that Fedex also banged it hard and it has a one inch chipped area on the back edge at the bottom. I'm sad because the guitar is otherwise quite nice. Better than on the photos. The finish is surprising: bound body, neck and headstock, though in reality, with the thick finishes, it's very hard to distinguish real binding from a substitute, but, hey, it looks good, not like a cheapo decal. The finish is not as goopy a poly as some. Where the chip is, I can see it's more brittle, which isn't all bad, it would be less damping, though less sturdy. The back and neck are a nice tobacco color, with the wood grain showing. Some areas on the back of the neck show a little "fogging". The nut is a Tusq-like hard material. There's only one fret that needs a touch of work, which for any factory guitar is darned good. The neck is about 43mm wide at the nut, 21mm thick at the 1st fret, 23mm at the 12th. It feels a lot like a Gibson 60s neck. The guitar is a little lighter than a typical Les Paul, with a bolt-on neck, which I usually prefer, because you can always adjust the action by touching up the neck angle (as opposed to faking it with the truss-rod or having the neck re$et). The wood is alder or something of that sort, lighter than mahogany. The gold flake is well-done. The fingerboard seems like a type of rosewood, but it's a little grey and could be some other hardwood, like walnut. I'm about to go try out the pickups etc on a real amp. And I have to figure out what to do, patch the chip (and probably get a nice discount) or exchange it.

I've been playing for 50 years. My main guitars are a 1965 Gibson ES335 and a 1963 Martin D18. Rondo Music is absolutely the "go-to" source if you aren't a brand name snob. I went down to GC to try some $2500-$3500 Les Pauls. If you want an axe that just about equals those right out of the box, with a finish that commands adoration, for 1/10 the price, get an Agile 3000. If you're willing to do a little more set-up and touch-up, or maybe return one along the way, the Douglas for 1/20 the price is surprisingly good.

As to an SX Callisto Les Paul, my experience is that with a little work SX axes can be great, but their QA fits the 1/3 return concept, whereas Douglas seems like less than 1/5 returns, and the detail of their finishing is better. Given the unexpected extras on the Douglas, like the look of full body, neck and headstock binding, hard nut, and cheaper, it could be a better deal.
Last edited by FernandRaynaud at Jan 8, 2013,
#4
Tons of guys on here have agiles, which also come from rondo so you don't have to worry about it being a scam. I'm planning on ordering an agile al3100 from rondo quite soon.
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#5
I got a Douglas Scope 727 as my first 7 stringer after 6's for 2.5 years. With my experience with them, there is no comparison to anything else in the price range. First, it got here in 4 days after ordering. My only problem was that a couple of strings were broken, but that's no problem because I planned on switching them anyway. No cosmetic damages at all. The licensed Floyd is on par with any other that I've used, but with that being said, no Floyd Rose has ever given me any kind of issue. Neck was straight and there are no sharp frets.
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#6
Quote by thebestjoe
I got a Douglas Scope 727 as my first 7 stringer after 6's for 2.5 years. With my experience with them, there is no comparison to anything else in the price range. First, it got here in 4 days after ordering. My only problem was that a couple of strings were broken, but that's no problem because I planned on switching them anyway. No cosmetic damages at all. The licensed Floyd is on par with any other that I've used, but with that being said, no Floyd Rose has ever given me any kind of issue. Neck was straight and there are no sharp frets.

I had a Douglas SR370 7-string with an LFR. The Floyd was easily the worst I've ever touched. It didn't last 1 week before it wouldn't stay in tune.

I would say it's safe to assume that you are not getting a reliable Floyd with s Douglas. Not trying to be insulting to you, but I really don't think anyone who buys a Douglas with a Floyd should expect a quality piece of hardware.

Also, there aren't many 7-strings on the market in that price range, but I eventually realized that I was better off buying a used one if I wanted a cheap 7. And I eventually did because my Douglas was very neck heavy and just an all around lousy guitar. Got a Korean made Washburn for under $100 used, and it's blows the Douglas away in every way.

I don't think anyone should expect too much from a Chinese, low-end budget guitar. There are far too many rave reviews out there for all brands of low-end. Everything should be critiqued with a critical eye. There really aren't so many "perfect" guitars out there when it comes down to it, I don't care what anyone says.
#7
Quote by W4RP1G
I had a Douglas SR370 7-string with an LFR. The Floyd was easily the worst I've ever touched. It didn't last 1 week before it wouldn't stay in tune.

I would say it's safe to assume that you are not getting a reliable Floyd with s Douglas. Not trying to be insulting to you, but I really don't think anyone who buys a Douglas with a Floyd should expect a quality piece of hardware.

Also, there aren't many 7-strings on the market in that price range, but I eventually realized that I was better off buying a used one if I wanted a cheap 7. And I eventually did because my Douglas was very neck heavy and just an all around lousy guitar. Got a Korean made Washburn for under $100 used, and it's blows the Douglas away in every way.

I don't think anyone should expect too much from a Chinese, low-end budget guitar. There are far too many rave reviews out there for all brands of low-end. Everything should be critiqued with a critical eye. There really aren't so many "perfect" guitars out there when it comes down to it, I don't care what anyone says.


No offense taken, and when I ordered it, I was expecting hardware problems. I hear they can be hit or miss, so maybe I just got lucky? But like I've said, I haven't had any tuning stability issues with any of the guitars with double locking trems that I've had (Around 8). Not that their trems (Or them being 7 strings) are even relevant since TS is looking at an LP copy.
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#8
Quote by W4RP1G
I don't think anyone should expect too much from a Chinese, low-end budget guitar. There are far too many rave reviews out there for all brands of low-end. Everything should be critiqued with a critical eye. There really aren't so many "perfect" guitars out there when it comes down to it, I don't care what anyone says.


There are two tiers of satisfaction. People who play only really tweaked out guitars, and (most) people who would find off the shelf Gibsons OK. The tweaks find that, say, the slightest imperfection, or a minutely low or high fret, disqualifies a guitar, meaning most off the shelf Gibsons are not acceptable. To the second group, if it's cosmetically clean and plays OK, it passes. There are a lot of these Asian guitars that are surprisingly good and to the latter group they are "perfect". Koreans are better made than Chinese.

But it's an absurd amount of money to go commercially from that to a tweak's perfect, more than 10, 20 to 1! Someone who's paid $2500 for a guitar doesn't want to hear it, but if somebody gets lucky and/or puts in the work, they can get there starting from many an Asian $150-300 axe. I mean, it's not exactly like building the mars rover, or a Stradivarius, is it?
Last edited by FernandRaynaud at Jan 9, 2013,