#1
I haven't made a NGD yet, but I got an 08 Dean ML Noir XT, brand new from a shop.
I noticed although I traded in for it, the tag was $479, and I was surprised that it's made in Korea.
This is great, I've previously hated Dean in the past cause a lot of the newer ones are made in China, however, the neck still has that semi cheap Chinese feel to it. (it's really beefy btw, and the frets small, I think i'll need smaller gauge strings to get the feel of it.)
But what's the verdict of Korean made Deans, as far as the newer models go?
Cusp of Magic
#2
I have a Dean CBV which is Korean made. The neck is beefy, but I think that's a standard Dean trait, which is awkward as I'm an ESP fan boy. The build quality on mine is great except for some of the threading for the back plate screws seem to be quite stripped. Other than that, it's absolutely fine.
#3
The majority of Dean's lineup is made in Korea, only the bottom rung stuff is made in China.

My ML AT3000 has a rather thin neck, both in thickness and width, and has the small frets you're talking about. It's a comfortable neck but I'm not big on small necks in the first place. I like the frets however, they're like the frets on vintage instruments and very easy to play and bend on. Plus it's a nice change from the humungous-extragiganticfornoreason-jumbo frets that's become the norm. I string everything I have with DR 10's except this guitar, which has DR 9's.

Here's the Dean verdict for the entire brand. If it's not made in China (everything that isn't uber budget) and doesn't have Dime's name on the headstock, it's a quality instrument. Those two categories overshadow everything else the brand offers (in terms of UG "knowledge"), therefore the entire company is crap and should be avoided. Don'cha love bandwagons
Endorsed by Dean Guitars 07-10
2003 Gibson Flying V w/ Moon Inlay
2006 Fender All-American Partscaster
SVK ELP-C500 Custom

1964 Fender Vibro Champ
1989 Peavey VTM60

[thread="1166208"]Gibsons Historic Designs[/thread]
#4
Hmm.
I'll admit, I do see decent quality in this guitar, I just think I need to upgrade the pots/pickups.
And I don't have a tremolo arm so I can't determine whether the licensed floyd is good or not. Although it doesn't have Dime's name on the headstock and isn't particularly modeled after one of his guitars, it's still an ML, only I guess it has it's own character being solid black, and I realize now how hard it is to get used to a fretboard without inlays.
Cusp of Magic
#5
Just use the side dots, you can't really see the fret markers anyways when you play standing up. And an ML was meant to rock out loud standing up haha.

I'm not sure if the '08 has the new style or the old style LFR (like found on a setneck Razorback), the RB style one is better but the new style is still solid. If you can set up a Floyd you shouldn't have any problems with it. The stock pickups are junk, I'd recommend swapping them out for your personal tastes when you find the funds/time.

Here's a little ML history. Back when Mr. Zelinsky was just forming his ideas and comtemplating a company he had a partner named Matt Lynn who designed the ML. It was meant to have a similar tone to a Les Paul without the shoulder strain, so as much weight as possible was distributed outwards to help balance it out and relieve perceived shoulder strain. Before the company was actually founded Matt Lynn was killed in a car accident and Zelinsky named the model "ML" after his initials and in memory of Lynn.

Fast forward a few years and Dime steps into the picture. Before he had his endorsement he used to (horribly) route out his Deans and drop a Floyd in 'em. It wasn't until Dime was picked up with Dean that the Floyded versions came out, though you could custom order them with a Kahler throughout the 80's.
Endorsed by Dean Guitars 07-10
2003 Gibson Flying V w/ Moon Inlay
2006 Fender All-American Partscaster
SVK ELP-C500 Custom

1964 Fender Vibro Champ
1989 Peavey VTM60

[thread="1166208"]Gibsons Historic Designs[/thread]
#6
I never knew the ML was designed for that reason, that's pretty awesome.
The pickups aren't that great, but i don't have many options, other than figuring out how to wire an active mid boost into it, or putting a Dimarzio Megadrive in it.
Which, the dimarzio is in my Charvel, and i'm not sure if I like the Dean enough to put that pickup in it, haha.
Edit: And I don't have the tremolo arm yet, so I can't determine if it's decent or not, but the floyd seems to be ok quality, the baseplate is solid and not thick die cast metal.
Cusp of Magic
Last edited by Chaos-Serenade at Nov 7, 2011,
#7
If it sucks, I can hunt down whoever assembled it and give him a good talking-to.
I am a fake mountain.
#8
I had a dean cadillac select and it was pretty sweet...but it was too similar to my les paul so i sold it after it hung up on the wall for a couple months.

now that my les paul is in pieces waiting to get painted i kinda wish i still had it.