#1
Hello,

I'm currently playing an Ibanez S Prestige, which I love. I've been using it for about 6 years now and I'm looking to buy a second guitar to have setup with alternative tunings and a non-recessed tremelo system.

So far the things I'm looking for in my next guitar are the following:

  • blocked (non-recessed) tremelo (for use with a D-Tuna)
  • Locking nut
  • 24 frets (preferred, but not required)
  • bridge humbucker
  • jumbo frets, low action (or adjustable)
  • price range: around 1000 or less


I'm mainly interested in playing shreddy metal, but I do also enjoy a guitar that can produce nice clean tones for blues rock.

I love 80's metal, EVH, Paul Gilbert, Michael Schenker, Russ Parrish, Marty Friedman, Blues Saraceno.

I'm also very into progressive/death/technical metal. I really love Revocation and Protest the Hero.

As for body shape, I'm not too picky. Just anything that's not super round.

I'm located in northern New Jersey, very close to Newark and New York.

I'd prefer a new guitar but a like-new used guitar is fine too.

So far the closest thing I've found to what I'm looking for is the Kramer SM-1 (which is actually a recessed bridge I believe).

Let me know what you think about Kramer guitars (I've been reading that they've gone downhill since the 80's?), and let me know if you can think of anything else that comes close to what I'm looking for. I'm very open to hearing suggestions and rationales for differing opinions.

I will take all comments into consideration,
Thanks for your time!
Last edited by jschoch at Jun 3, 2014,
#2
try the evh striped series guitars. Really simple. Around 900 dollars. Single bridge hum bucker and a volume knob with a non-recessed floyd rose. also comes with a d-tuna already on installed on the floyd, so no installation needed
Last edited by eknumber9 at Jun 3, 2014,
#3
Have you considered ESP guitars? I've got a Horizon and I love it - it's my favorite guitar. Not too sure about your blocked tremolo request but you can find used LTD MH1000s for ~$500. Or if hardtail is an option, you can get one without a tremolo system. I think most of the MH1000s with a Floyd also come with EMG 81/85 pickups. The ones without Floyds usually have Seymour Duncans. It's a little bit of a thicker neck than an Ibanez or a Jackson, though. So if you could try one out, that'd be your best bet.

I know you said you don't want a "round" shape, which probably means LP shape. However, the LTD EC1000 is also a decent guitar for the price and will do your shreddy stuff.
#4
if you can still find one, the japanese-made charvel pro mods (the non-wild card ones) are pretty nice. richtone (in the UK so maybe not ideal since you're in the USA) is getting another bunch somehow.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#5
All great suggestions! Thank you guys!

I'm fairly unfamiliar with ESP and Charvel, but they look great. Definitely the kind of setup that I like. The only problem is that I'm really trying to get the blocked trem and those two brands are only floating bridge or hardtail. I have no doubt that they are great, but I already have a floating bridge on my Ibanez which I'm very happy with. I'd like to diversify a bit with this purchase.

I saw the EVH striped series before, but totally missed that it had the D-Tuna pre-installed! Spot on. I was also unsure about how the clean tones would sound, but after a few youtube videos I don't think it sounds bad at all.

I welcome further suggestions, but right now the striped series definitely seems like the right pick, even though it's a bit pricey for such a bare-bones setup. Thank you eknumber9.
Last edited by jschoch at Jun 3, 2014,
#6
Since you are willing to go with 22 frets then I would highly recommend a Gary Kramer Illusionist. Gary Kramer makes some killer guitars for the money and the Illusionist has everything you're looking for under your budget ($799 factory direct). FYI Gary Kramer is the original Kramer maker from the '70s-'80s.
#7
Wow that looks really great! Thank you for the input!

I'm a little apprehensive about going from a 24 fret neck to 22, but it's not like I use them that regularly anyway. Plus I can always bend up to E, and I've been reading good things about the neck pickup being underneath the harmonic giving it a warmer tone (but who knows if that's actually negligible). Also gives me more picking room since I have a neck humbucker currently in addition to the 2 extra frets.

But man, that guitar seems to be just what I was looking for. And now I don't have to worry about Dimebag rolling in his grave over getting the bumblebee strat reproduction lol.

Thanks again Way Cool Jr. You are indeed way cool.

I won't be making an order until the end of the week, so if anybody thinks they can top that one, please feel free to post!
Last edited by jschoch at Jun 3, 2014,
#8
As others have remarked, the Kramer guitars that were the "really big thing" during the Hair Metal craze of the 1980s are not the same as those being made under the Kramer name today (which is owned by Gibson). Gary Kramer is making guitars under his own name, and from what I have heard, they are first-rate instruments.

You might want to take a look at the offerings from Carvin. The quality is excellent, and they have countless options from which to choose. The Carvin ST300 sounds as if it would suit your needs very well:

http://www.carvinguitars.com/catalog/guitars/st300
"Maybe this world is another planet's hell?" - Aldous Huxley
#9
Quote by jschoch
Wow that looks really great! Thank you for the input!

I'm a little apprehensive about going from a 24 fret neck to 22, but it's not like I use them that regularly anyway. Plus I can always bend up to E, and I've been reading good things about the neck pickup being underneath the harmonic giving it a warmer tone (but who knows if that's actually negligible). Also gives me more picking room since I have a neck humbucker currently in addition to the 2 extra frets.

But man, that guitar seems to be just what I was looking for. And now I don't have to worry about Dimebag rolling in his grave over getting the bumblebee strat reproduction lol.

Thanks again Way Cool Jr. You are indeed way cool.

I won't be making an order until the end of the week, so if anybody thinks they can top that one, please feel free to post!

If you do decide to pull the trigger on the Gary Kramer then here are some things you should know. All of the guitars are assembled and setup to order by the head master luthier Leo Scala (great guy BTW).

So you can talk to him via e-mail and tell him that you just ordered a guitar and plan on using it with a D-Tuna and would like it to be setup for dive only. In short, he's more than willing to set it up to your specs if you ask nicely. He also personally plays all of them and makes sure they are great players out the door.

They take about 5 days before they ship out because of all the work that goes into them to make sure they are top notch before they leave. They also sell custom hard cases but I don't see the prices listed anymore, so if you wan't one you need to ask him about them.

Good luck with whatever guitar you decide to get. Also, thanks for the complement.
#10
Thanks for posting FatalGear, those guitars look excellent as well. That one you linked happens to be recessed bridge but I do see some other guitars on that website that I will be considering.


I'm still leaning towards the Gary Kramer Illusionist, so thanks for the extra info Way Cool, that's very good to know. If I decide to go for the GK, I'll definitely contact Leo about it. It would be great to have peace of mind knowing that such care was put into making it and ensuring the quality.
#11
Quote by jschoch
All great suggestions! Thank you guys!

I'm fairly unfamiliar with ESP and Charvel, but they look great. Definitely the kind of setup that I like. The only problem is that I'm really trying to get the blocked trem and those two brands are only floating bridge or hardtail. I have no doubt that they are great, but I already have a floating bridge on my Ibanez which I'm very happy with. I'd like to diversify a bit with this purchase.


No the older MIJ charvel pro mods have non-recessed trems (apart from the wildcard models which had recessed trems in most cases).

The older USA-made Pro Mod Charvels also had non-recessed trems too, if you can still find one (they were discontinued before the MIJs, the MIJ ones replaced them).

Yeah the new MIM charvel pro mods have recessed trems so they wouldn't be what you want.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#12
Way cool info, Way Cool JR!
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Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#13
Oh I see, thanks for clearing that up Dave. A quick google search and I see what you're talking about. They seem to be a bit hard to find, but I'll do some more research on those when I get home tonight.
#14
No worries. Yeah they have been discontinued for a while, so it's sort of luck if you find them (as I said, a shop in the UK has managed to get a batch somehow but that's probably not much help for you in the USA), but I just thought I'd mention them just in case you come across them.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?