#1
So, I went ahead and did it... I bought myself a Palm Bay Tempest. Short answer, it's great. Longer answer forthcoming:

Who are Palm Bay?

Palm Bay are a British company based in Farnborough (Outside of London) who in the 90's were specialized as a customshop. But nowadays it seems to be one guy called Andrew running the whole affair. The guitars are built in Korea... Except they aren't. I was being told that a lot of the work is done in Korea, but also in part in Japan and the UK. So it's an interesting Amalgamation of places and I can imagine it being a logistical nightmare, but again. Was told that every guitar gets a setup and a quality check in the UK regardless, they also ship from the UK.

Because we all know what my pictures are like These are the ones of the guitar before shipping (It was packed well, with a box inside a box. Boxception)









So I'm going to cover the good with it now:

It looks GREAT. The purple is slightly darker than it is in the photo and the red is slightly lighter. I was needing a colourful guitar anyway so I don't run into it onstage when it's in a rack next to my amplifier. But seriously, it looks great. The binding is nice, finish is smooth with no blemishes of any kind (Which was my concern) Especially for the price point and location of it being made.

It stays in tune very well. There's some Grover tuners on it, which I wasn't expecting as the site didn't tell me what the tuners were, so I was expecting some no-name Korean tuners, but Grovers was a nice surprise. Admittedly I was having some problems with tuning first, but I'm guessing that's down to either it being in the van and going out of tune or the humidity in the van was too cold and it's admittedly pretty warm in my bedroom (About 25C)

Upper fret access is nice and far better than my Schecter ATX V (Which is my only major gripe with the Schecter, aside from the weight of it) I can reach everywhere I need too with ease and the baseless bolton joint doesn't get in the way (Used to Neckthroughs/Set necks)

And it plays like warm, melted butter. With it's 18" radius (Ooh er misses) and it feels like a D or a U shape on the back of the neck, I could be wrong, but whatever it is. It's comfortable and doesn't give my fingers short spasms like a couple of my guitars do from the neck being either too wide or uncomfortable. It easily rivals some of my more expensive guitars, in terms of playability, it also feels really weighty but light. Which is a massive plus.

Back of the neck isn't finished however (correction by Despellman: It is finished with a satin like poly finish)
which is great for me as my hands don't stick to it at all, which is cool.

However, the tone lets it downslightly, which is my only minor gripe as pickups can be changed. The stock Barracuda pickups aren't bad. They're massively far from it, but I just find them to be really middle of the road in terms of what it can do. The pickups sound slightly thin and not as articulate as something like an EMG HZ. However the frequency response and the way it reacts to your playing is far better. It feels like they're clones of a Super Distortion, but not as good. I might swap it with an actual super Distortion I have in one of my Dean's for a bit, just to see how it compares. However the stock pickups aren't anything great and they're better than the Ibanez Inf ones you see in things like the RG350 or the V7/V8's that are in some of the prestige lines, but I was planning on changing the pickups anyway, but it's nice that there's some stock ones out there that don't make me want to rip them out instantly.

Overall, I got more than I wanted out of this guitar. The finish, playability and the looks of the guitar are massively striking and it plays reminiscent of an old Ibanez Prestige 6 string I had many moons ago, but I had too many gripes and problems with that guitar. However, I have no real qualms about this Palm Bay guitar, outside of the pickups. The hardtail bridge isn't sharp in anyway, no uneven or sharp frets of anykind and the control scheme is simple (Just how I like it)

Edit: Another minor grip with the guitar, is the reversed headstock. I've been tuning it like I would with one of my other guitars and hitting the low E string and turning the closest tuner and being confused why nothing was happening. But that's my own derpiness.

Outside of the review:

I'd like to also give props to Andrew over at Palm Bay for responding to my every little concern and question and being a top bloak by putting things in place that the company didn't have (I had questions about return policies and things, cheers Danny!)

They've also got a couple of new models in the future. One of which being single pickup, black, hardtail and slightly cheaper. But for the money, these things are fantastic and more people need to check them out and go and like their Facebook page for the guys who are on Facebook.

*Specs*

Body: 55mm Mahogany with flame maple top and multi-binding finish.
Neck: One piece maple.
Fingerboard: Ebony with abalone ski slope and trade mark palm tree inlays. 24 fret two octave board with 18 inch radius and hard nickel chrome chunky frets.
Neck/body joint: Bolt on plateless with access cutback.
Headstock: Maple/mahogany sandwich with 14 degree scarfe joint.
Hardware colour: Black
Pickups: Palm Bay Barracuda high output pickups with H S H configuration.
Electrics: Master volume and tone plus Five way switch.
Strings: Strings through body configuration with Rotosound Orange 9-46 hybrids.
Colours: Blue/Red Black/Emerald Black/Purple.

Thanks for reading this guys, I think I've found a winner of a guitar.

http://www.palmbayguitars.com

Video's and samples to come.

Edit. Also forgot to mention it's amazingly well balanced, there's no neck dive of any sort when playing standing up.

Double edit: A twelve month warranty is standard. But legally in the EU you may get a three year warranty also.

Video of guitar
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
Last edited by Fisheth24 at Feb 10, 2015,
#2
Congrats on your NGD, a nice departure from the usual to be sure. It seems like a serious axe that doesn't take itself too seriously.

And kudos for swimming into uncharted waters!
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Jan 7, 2015,
#3
I like it.
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#4
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Congrats on your NGD, and kudos for swimming into uncharted waters!


Yeah, was the return policy that did it. I'm gonna be getting stuff from Palm Bay again for sure.

I think this is the first NGD for them on the entire internets.

Certinally is a departure for me. It's not a V. (That rhymed! If PB did a V style guitar that could be interesting, gonna ask Andrew if there's plans for one in the pipeline once I get the video's up.

I'd buy one of those in a heartbeat if the price was right!
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
Last edited by Fisheth24 at Jan 7, 2015,
#5
That does look nice.

Have to say, I agree with you on the Ibanez Inf pickups. Had an S520 a few years ago, and didn't think much of them(plus, I think I got it the year production moved to Indonesia, and the build quality was awful - frets not flush with the edge of the neck being the worst thing).
Quote by Diemon Dave
Don't go ninjerin nobody don't need ninjerin'
#6
Totally, I just found the inf to be lacking in output aswell as everything else. They almost put me off Ibanez guitars for life.
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#7
Y'know...now you need a good Hawaiian shirt or three.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#8
Congrats. Good to see that a Surrey/Hants guitar maker exists. A bit pointy for my tastes but you never know in future
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#9
Interesting guitar, out of the ordinary. Congratulations!

HNGD!
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#10
Cool man.

Seems like a guitar you'll spend the rest of your life with, or not.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
Omae wa mou
Shindeiru



Quote by Axelfox
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#11
Quote by Fisheth24
Totally, I just found the inf to be lacking in output aswell as everything else. They almost put me off Ibanez guitars for life.

Probably why I like my Destroyer. DiMarzio air norton in the neck, and a tone zone in the bridge. Makes it sound different from my other mahogany-bodied, humbuckered guitars(which is most of them), in a good way.
Quote by Diemon Dave
Don't go ninjerin nobody don't need ninjerin'
#13
Nice

Glad it worked out ok, I had my fingers crossed for you
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?
#15
Looks very nice mate!

Might pickup the purple/black one if i get the cash free.
I shouldn't post when drunk..



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#16
Cheers guys! Glad you like it! Tone Zone/Air Norton is where I'm going with this, I think.

Also my video appeared on the Palm Bay Facebook page, today is cool.
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
Last edited by Fisheth24 at Jan 8, 2015,
#18
Quote by Fisheth24
Cheers guys! Glad you like it! Tone Zone/Air Norton is where I'm going with this, I think.

and i just sold an old tone zone for $45. sorry.

congrats on the new guitar, looks great!
I wondered why the frisbee was getting bigger, then it hit me.
#19
Nice axe Fishy HNGD
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#20
Had a look through their website, love the double burst guitars, shame all the nice looking ones have Floyd Roses though! Great GAS however!
#21
Quote by cleft11
Had a look through their website, love the double burst guitars, shame all the nice looking ones have Floyd Roses though! Great GAS however!


They're pretty sweet axes. I really love mine.

Update: Tried it at a rehersal last night as the other guitarist wasn't there and I was asked to bring along my guitar and an amp. In short it's killer. It lasted the two hour session with no issues at all and honestly. It sounded great. Not sure about the stock pickups though. Really tempted to leave them in now as they sounded absolutely killer.

Maybe it was the acoustics in the room or something, but I love the tone.
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#22
Bump,

Just wanted to give it a quick bump with some updates a month or so later, I've taken it to a couple of rehearsals running through my Dark Terror and a smallish (But growing pedal board)

Impressions: Guitar holds up, stays in tune and feels great. Single coil pick up is pretty hot. Which I like and suits me well.

Humbuckers aren't too hot, but hot enough to get some real dirt and grit out of them.

I was contemplating changing the pickups, but I might not bother. The stock ones are good enough as it is.

Guitar is pretty light and has a pretty dark tone.

And still loving the palm tree inlays and the red and purple thing. It's pretty awesome. Can't wait to gig with it in the foreseeable future (and I still need to buy that tropical shirt to match)

All in all a very good buy and I recommend everyone to get one of these guitars.
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
Last edited by Fisheth24 at Feb 9, 2015,
#25
Quote by Fisheth24
Sweet!

I think you need to be more revolutionary, and get a pair of Hawaiian trousers made.
Quote by Diemon Dave
Don't go ninjerin nobody don't need ninjerin'
#26
Actually, they sell scrubs..

Edit: just checked my Hawaiian apparel sites- all the scrubs have solid bottoms/pants. The longest pants with this style prints are board shorts.


...so you'd be a pioneer!


Edit 2: nope- there are couture and high-end ones out there.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Feb 10, 2015,
#27
Quote by Fisheth24

Back of the neck isn't finished however, which is great for me as my hands don't stick to it at all, which is cool.


The back of the neck IS finished in what PBG describes as a "thin satin finish," most likely poly.

It may FEEL unfinished, but it's the very rare neck wood that would actually be turned out by a responsible manufacturer without a finish, and maple's not one of them.
#28
Quote by dspellman
The back of the neck IS finished in what PBG describes as a "thin satin finish," most likely poly.

It may FEEL unfinished, but it's the very rare neck wood that would actually be turned out by a responsible manufacturer without a finish, and maple's not one of them.


Thanks for the wealth of knowledge. Truthfully I didn't see it. Gonna edit your correction in.
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#29
Yeah if the neck actually was unfinished, then there wouldn't be anything to protect it from the outside world or your hands. Calling a neck that's unpainted but with a poly satin finish 'unfinished' is yet another marketing misnomer.
Roses are red
Violets are blue
Omae wa mou
Shindeiru



Quote by Axelfox
Reeeeeeeeeeeeeeee
#30
Obviously fooled me cause that's what I thought it was
Bass Gear:

Mensinger: Speesy
Fender Precision 1989 (CIJ Rosewood)
Fender Steve Harris (CIJ)
Lakland J Sonic 5
Epiphone Explorer
Maruszczyk (custom) Jake

Ashdown CTM 100
#31
Quote by slapsymcdougal
I think you need to be more revolutionary, and get a pair of Hawaiian trousers made.


lol

glad to hear the guitar is holding up
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?
#32
Quote by Fisheth24
Thanks for the wealth of knowledge. Truthfully I didn't see it. Gonna edit your correction in.


Not a wealth of knowledge this time (though a good guess) -- I actually emailed PBG and quoted their reply.

I have a pair of new guitars that have the same kind of very fast satin-finished "barely there" neck finish, and it's becoming very common on bolt-neck guitars (the neck-throughs usually have a bump in the paint where they transition from satin to gloss) these days.