AL-3200 Neck-Thru review by Agile

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.2 (34 votes)
Agile: AL-3200 Neck-Thru
0

Sound — 10
This is definitely the best sounding guitar I've ever owned. I'm playing it through a Marshall Haze 15 head and matching 1x12 cab with an old Peavey 1x10 cab from a VS20. Also using a Vox Wah, Joyo compressor and Joyo 6-band EQ. The neck thru design adds brightness and crispness to the normally darker tone of the mahogany and makes for a very articulate and well defined tone. The pickups are definitely Vintage voiced and need a bit of extra Drive to pull metal tones but they will do it with the right encouragement. But they definitely Shine at classic rock and blues. They're a little HOT and tend to break up pretty easy when played clean and picked hard, but with a lighter touch or rolling back a bit on the volume and tone takes the bite out and leaves a nice smooth tone. I've played alot of Gibson LP's, but never owned one, over the years and this really does compare favorably to them.

Overall Impression — 10
I play metal, rock, blues, jazz and whatever else I feel like playing. Been playing for 14 years. At this low price and high quality it's the perfect gigging guitar. This is a solid rock guitar. Any '70's or '90's classic rock/alternative as well as blues and a bit of metal is a perfect fit for the overall stock character of this guitar, but a quick pickup change and this will be a real chameleon. Really I just love this guitar. I've been playing is constantly and cannot seem to put it down. It's probably the nicest looking, sounding and playing instrument I've ever owned. I've already ordered another Agile AL-2000 w/Floyd Rose to put some super HOT pickups in for a more modern sound because I just love the stock pickups in the 3200 too much. I would personally hunt down and kill anyone who took this guitar. Failing that I would replace it with another Agile Neck-Thru 3200.

Reliability & Durability — 9
Definitely a gig-worthy guitar. It's very solid and has already taken a couple good bumps and bangs with no visible damage. The workmanship is very high on this guitar so I have no doubt it will be something I'll be playing for many, many years. No loose, crooked or poorly installed components.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
Very quiet and quality electrics. Cloth covered wire and clean soldering with good routing. I love the white finish on this guitar. The white goes transparent on the back of the body and neck so the neck-thru is visible. Very cool. It's almost perfect except for one very, tiny (2mm) blemish under the pickguard, right next to the screw hole by the neck. It's not visible when the pickguard is on and I don't plan on removing it. The neck is incredibly smooth and fast. The action was nice and low and the ebony fretboard feels amazing. The fretwork is great overall. There was a bit of string buzz when I got it, but a bit of set up and that was cured. The neck relief really does give great access to the upper frets and the tummy cut makes it very comfortable to play while standing.

Features — 10
This was my first purchase from Rondo Music and now that I've played it for a few months I'm quite impressed. Rondo's Agile line is based around affordable, Les Paul-styled guitars built in Korea wit high quality components. The AL-3200 Neck-Thru line is pretty different from the rest of their guitars. I got the white version with chrome hardware. It comes with all the same hardware and electronics as the 3000 line plus a graphtec graphite nut and saddles. It also features a 5 piece walnut/maple neck thru design and mahogany body, ebony fretboard, real mother of pearl inlays, grover tuners, contoured neck joint for great upper fret access and a tummy cut on the back. Triple bound headstock and single binding on the body. I never was quite clear as to whether this particular model had a maple cap or anything, though I doubt it. For whatever reason the white version was priced at $399 and the black and other colors are all $599. Personally I love thew white finish. Overall it's an incredible instrument for the price.

12 comments sorted by best / new / date

    JonnyMonster91
    rv_phoenix wrote: Straight 10s are always irrelevant, How much could we grant for features to a guitar with a Lo-Pro edge, H-S-H configuration and coil-tapping for both humbuckers? How much could we award a Wizard-type neck reinforced with titan-made truss-rods? But everyone who has touched once in his lifetime an Ibanez RG Prestige, for instance, knows what an impression should be for getting a 10. it still doesn't play better than a smooth, satin RG Prestige. ratings are a little bit exaggerated.
    Hilarious.
    MaggaraMarine
    rv_phoenix wrote: Straight 10s are always irrelevant, even when we are clearly facing an outstanding instrument for the price, as this one. But, c'mon: a 10 for features, for an axe conceived, basicly, in late 50s, with a standard Tune-O-Matic bridge and two stock humbuckers? How much could we grant for features to a guitar with a Lo-Pro edge, H-S-H configuration and coil-tapping for both humbuckers? How much could we award a Wizard-type neck reinforced with titan-made truss-rods? Then comes the impression. I'm sure this one is an impressive instrument when you think about its price. But everyone who has touched once in his lifetime an Ibanez RG Prestige, for instance, knows what an impression should be for getting a 10. Even it plays better than a genuine Gibson Les Paul (which is possible, due to the neck-through-body configuration), it still doesn't play better than a smooth, satin RG Prestige. (To avoid any possible comment, I DON'T own such an instrument, I just played on three of them when visiting a friend.) Otherwise, the review is good and useful, but ratings are a little bit exaggerated.
    Maybe he doesn't need those features you mentioned and maybe he doesn't like Ibanezes. But I admit that the ratings are a bit exaggerated.
    dspellman
    rv_phoenix wrote: But, c'mon: a 10 for features, for an axe conceived, basicly, in late 50s, with a standard Tune-O-Matic bridge and two stock humbuckers?
    The AL-3200 differs from a standard LP in some interesting ways. For starters, it's neck-through construction. Second, it's got a scarfed (carved) neck heel like that on a Gibson Axcess; there's no neck heel to bang into when you slide up the neck; it's just smooth going all the way. It's got a rib (belly?) cut, so it plays much more comfortably. That stubby horn gives a lot better upper fret access for large hands. The fretboard is ebony, not chopped succotash in plastic, as on some current new Gibsons. The inlays are real MOP, not plastic, as on most Gibson LPs. The frets are very polished and well done (and jumbos at that). The radius is 13.7", flatter than the usual Gibson. There's a teflon nut and string-saver saddles on that "standard" bridge. And I think you'd have to consider the price a feature; neither Gibson nor PRS have anything that could compare, at any price. An Ibanez RG is a nice guitar, but simply slathering a guitar with gizmos doesn't warrant a 10 on features. Coil tapping for humbuckers is a feature, but one that can be added in a few minutes and with minor expense to the Agile. Some would consider the middle single coil pickup more PIA than feature. I like 'em, but there are those who think they simply get in the way of picking. And a trem bridge isn't much of a feature if you don't use one. It becomes a liability, not a feature, when it comes to changing strings quickly after a breakage during a set. And finally -- don't assume that an RG necessarily plays better than an Agile; my neck-through Agile has a Wizard-thin neck, a wider (at the nut) fretboard, a 16" radius, superglued frets and a PLEK-fueled setup.
    donedeal28
    Just got mine today, a 2TS and MAN is it a beast of a guitar. Say what you will about Rondo or Agile, but they're fantastic instruments for a fraction of what you would pay for a Gibson equivalent. The neck-thru looks so clean and the inlays glisten when the light hits them. And don't even get me started about the sound: plays and sounds better than my Gibson Studio. Certainly worth the money and then some.
    MaggaraMarine
    ^ Well... not exactly. Like some starter pack guitar shouldn't deserve all 10 even if it was the best guitar in under $100 price range. They always have so bad sound and feel that they don't deserve all 10. But people always have expectations about how the guitar will do its job and if it does it better than you expected (if you like expected it to deserve a 7) then it deserves a better rating (for example something like 8 or 9). It's hard to explain how we rate but if you are impressed about the quality the guitar has then it deserves a 8, 9 or even a 10 (though I think all guitars have something to complain about or at least they could have something that you would like them to have). If you have nothing to complain and are happy with the product then it's OK to give it a good rating even though it was a $400 Epiphone or $1200 Gibson. And of course it's always a personal opinion.
    NIN1993
    CatAmplifier wrote: nice guitar for the money does not deserve 10th at all though
    But shouldn't people be reviewing it based on its price? maybe for the price it does deserve a 10 compared to guitar priced the same, its not like you should be comparing theses guitar to a les paul
    dspellman
    CJSchecter96 wrote: Why does Gibson sue PRS but not Agile when Agile made a direct replica of the Les Paul. Oh yeah, a Prs is better than a Gibson by look and sound for the money. They should sue stupid companies like Agile for making replicas instead of good companies for making singlecuts.
    You're making assumptions about "good" vs. "stupid" companies, and you've obviously never played an Agile. Gibson lost the suit against PRS on appeal, and it would be virtually impossible for them to ever win a similar suit because legal precedent has been set. Agile's stubby horn and redesigned headstock have been enough to keep them out of Gibson's crosshairs as well. That's not "stupid" but smart. There are Japanese companies that duplicate an LP a lot more closely than Agile does; I think Gibson would have to start with them.
    SISO
    I think that when it comes to features we should look at the quality of them, not the quantity. An HSH ibanez gio shouldn't get more point in features than a LP if the three ibanez pick ups are worth less than just one from the others.
    rv_phoenix
    Straight 10s are always irrelevant, even when we are clearly facing an outstanding instrument for the price, as this one. But, c'mon: a 10 for features, for an axe conceived, basicly, in late 50s, with a standard Tune-O-Matic bridge and two stock humbuckers? How much could we grant for features to a guitar with a Lo-Pro edge, H-S-H configuration and coil-tapping for both humbuckers? How much could we award a Wizard-type neck reinforced with titan-made truss-rods? Then comes the impression. I'm sure this one is an impressive instrument when you think about its price. But everyone who has touched once in his lifetime an Ibanez RG Prestige, for instance, knows what an impression should be for getting a 10. Even it plays better than a genuine Gibson Les Paul (which is possible, due to the neck-through-body configuration), it still doesn't play better than a smooth, satin RG Prestige. (To avoid any possible comment, I DON'T own such an instrument, I just played on three of them when visiting a friend.) Otherwise, the review is good and useful, but ratings are a little bit exaggerated.
    CJSchecter96
    Why does Gibson sue PRS but not Agile when Agile made a direct replica of the Les Paul. Oh yeah, a Prs is better than a Gibson by look and sound for the money. They should sue stupid companies like Agile for making replicas instead of good companies for making singlecuts.
    blackbird51
    dspellman wrote: rv_phoenix wrote: But, c'mon: a 10 for features, for an axe conceived, basicly, in late 50s, with a standard Tune-O-Matic bridge and two stock humbuckers? The AL-3200 differs from a standard LP in some interesting ways. For starters, it's neck-through construction. Second, it's got a scarfed (carved) neck heel like that on a Gibson Axcess; there's no neck heel to bang into when you slide up the neck; it's just smooth going all the way. It's got a rib (belly?) cut, so it plays much more comfortably. That stubby horn gives a lot better upper fret access for large hands. The fretboard is ebony, not chopped succotash in plastic, as on some current new Gibsons. The inlays are real MOP, not plastic, as on most Gibson LPs. The frets are very polished and well done (and jumbos at that). The radius is 13.7", flatter than the usual Gibson. There's a teflon nut and string-saver saddles on that "standard" bridge. And I think you'd have to consider the price a feature; neither Gibson nor PRS have anything that could compare, at any price. An Ibanez RG is a nice guitar, but simply slathering a guitar with gizmos doesn't warrant a 10 on features. Coil tapping for humbuckers is a feature, but one that can be added in a few minutes and with minor expense to the Agile. Some would consider the middle single coil pickup more PIA than feature. I like 'em, but there are those who think they simply get in the way of picking. And a trem bridge isn't much of a feature if you don't use one. It becomes a liability, not a feature, when it comes to changing strings quickly after a breakage during a set. And finally -- don't assume that an RG necessarily plays better than an Agile; my neck-through Agile has a Wizard-thin neck, a wider (at the nut) fretboard, a 16" radius, superglued frets and a PLEK-fueled setup.
    Most of what you said was valid..but chopped up succatash? are you serious? some, actually a lot of people prefer rosewood over ebony.