#1
Wife surprised me with a Mustaine signature lefty VMNT for our anniversary. Made in Indonesia, huh? Plays nice out of the box, but not too impressed with the pickups. My first with actives, and I've never been a fan of actives. Well, maybe when I heard the Live Wires. My first with strap locks too - what a pain. I had to buy a Dave Mustaine Edition case straight from Dean, and hope it fits a lefty (yes, they make lefty cases, but are out of stock). Overall for the price, it's really smooth. The neck is a nice shape. It needs to be set up to be tuned under E, the action is super low and fretbuzz happened up to the pitch like it was purposely setup that way.

Might just have to keep the light string gauge for a while, but whatever strings came on it are dead now. My fingers were black just tuning it. I played a medley of My Last Words, Peace Sells, Angry Again, Hangar 18 (horribly - still rehabbing), all before I even put a strap on it. Oh, and busted out Cemetery Gates to test out the harmonic sustain - that, I guess, is what gets actives put in guitars.

As always, I recommend you try before you buy. I'll still give this one the thumbs up!
#2
Put in a fresh 9v battery and see if that helps the pups, and obviously change the strings.
What's a pain about the strap locks? It's like a $15 insurance policy..

Post up some pics! HNGD!
Main Rig:

Epiphone MKH Les Paul Custom 7 - Ronda
Ibanez RG8 "Scarlet" - AKA The Rambanez
Fender Strat "Danielle"/"Dani"
Line 6 POD HD Pro
Randall XL 4x12

Come join us...

Purchase list: Jim Root Tele, Jim Root Jazzmaster, MTM20
#3
The battery it came with tested 9.8v, haven't made an effort to change it, but noted. I barely got to play it - you know how jealous women can get. Strap locks - I prefer the Ibanez big buttons; haven't dropped one yet, but the Dunlop Straplok let go at the neck lock the first time I used it. Decided to do some reading up on them instead of sleeping to see if I was doing something wrong. Maybe Mr. Happy pushed the button, or I have a faulty lock.

Pics you say? Hold on... (yep, pics or STFU guy here too!)



It looks as good as the rest of them. Now I wanna jam and repay the neighbors for New Year's.

#5
Quote by chookiecookie
that looks quite sick

what was the pricetag on it?


$499 or less. I've seen one for $421, but didn't care to see what was wrong with it. Read some horror stories about packing issues. Google is your friend.
#6
Okay, I reversed the Straploks and figured that must be one of the reasons why the neck button came packed in a ziplock baggie with the allen wrenches, while the back fin had what must be the appropriate button installed. Whatever; it holds now if I don't get too sexy with it.

Guilty of still not replacing the 9v or the strings, I still like the sounds of my #1 Strat with heavy gauge strings better, but I'll have to be in the same room as an EMG-equipped guitar to tell if these pickups sound better. The V shape will take some getting used to. The neck and N+B have some decent tone when the volumes are backed almost all the way off. Not sure why it has a tone knob - you either have really muddy or wide open, no real rolloff, but I haven't had it very loud yet.

Any other advice from the active or V players will be much appreciated.
#7
HNGD! The V shape is the most comfy shape if you play it in classical position. Also those dean pups aren't the greatest, depending on if its worth it you might want to try out switching the pups for some good actives like blackouts or the Mustaine Livewires to keep with the sig guitar thing. The LW pups essentially active JB/Jazz pups. Changing out the pots wouldn't hurt either.
ESP E-II Horizon FR
Gibson Flying V HET SET
ESP Eclipse II FM JB/Jazz
ESP M-II Deluxe EMG 81/SA
Marshall JCM2000 DSL/ JCM800 1960a cab
Mesa Mark V 25
#8
Someone told me to play more to the left, which would be the right for me. I dunno, seems just like a Les Paul with a bigger body. I gotta do other project that cost money before I change out the pups. I'm still thinkin' about the Blackouts I heard when they first came out. Will the stock pots work or should I just change them out too?
#9
The stock pots will work for blackouts as long as they're 25k pots. The blackouts come with the 25k pots anyways so you might as well replace them with the higher quality ones if you have the time/ feel like it.
ESP E-II Horizon FR
Gibson Flying V HET SET
ESP Eclipse II FM JB/Jazz
ESP M-II Deluxe EMG 81/SA
Marshall JCM2000 DSL/ JCM800 1960a cab
Mesa Mark V 25
#10
Thanks!

I guess they went with one definitive set for the Blackouts, since I don't see anything else but the Live Wires on the SD site now. I still like them best. The Mustaine Live wires are too, I dunno - thrashy? They have that nice treble bite, but I want more bluesy tone, and the other Live Wire versions just don't have what I'm listening for. The EMG vs. Blackout comparison videos seem to be geared more towards the EMG crowd - must be the gear and metal subgenres. Sorta like when Dave played with Kirk and James on stage at The Big 4. Gonna watch Tone King's 81/85 vs. Blackouts video and see how it turns out...

...and I watched a couple of DM vs. EMG videos - man I don't know now!
#11
Please don't go by the ToneKings videos.

I've yet to hear a video of his with even decent tone, especially for metal..

I'd take EMG's over Blackouts.
Main Rig:

Epiphone MKH Les Paul Custom 7 - Ronda
Ibanez RG8 "Scarlet" - AKA The Rambanez
Fender Strat "Danielle"/"Dani"
Line 6 POD HD Pro
Randall XL 4x12

Come join us...

Purchase list: Jim Root Tele, Jim Root Jazzmaster, MTM20
#12
Blackouts are easier to EQ, but EMGs are capable of achieving a better metal tone (imo, of course).

HNGD! I love the art on that guitar.
Guitars:
ESP Eclipse II w/ SD Black Winters
Ibanez S540 w/ DiMarzios
Ibanez RG370DX w/ EMG 81/60
Ibanez RG7321 w/ DiMarzios
Pedals:
Fulltone FB-3
Crybaby Wah
Ibanez TS-9
Amps:
Peavey 6505+
#13
Quote by Charvel1995
Please don't go by the ToneKings videos.

I've yet to hear a video of his with even decent tone, especially for metal..

I'd take EMG's over Blackouts.


I know. He talks too much. I usually leave disappointed, like a church social...

EMG's are starting to change my mind. I am kicking myself for trying to make this guitar something it's not. EQ'ing isn't really an issue, I want THAT tone to beqin with and not have to worry about the rest of the chain. Clean gain signal and great harmonics. The "love" will come from the fingers.
#14
I put a new Energizer 9v in the VMNT - made all the difference. I can say the Dean pickups sound an awful lot like the DM Livewires. Roll off the bass on the Randall and the 2x15" Celestion cab gets a cleaner Dave sound than the remastered PS album. Bump up the mid and RIP comes out. Put some of the bass back and the 90's albums are there. Need to reload my 4x12... it might just magically transport Mr. Mustaine a few hundred miles south into my house.

I'll probably just leave this one alone. My case is on backorder, but will be rushed out to me and will fit a lefty. New strings and all will be happy happy. I did notice a defect today in the finish where the neck meets the body on top, but I bet no one else will.