Purchased from: Somewhere in Texas
Features — 3
I bought this guitar secondhand nearly 10 years ago so it must be older than that. It's got 22 frets and a maple fretboard and neck, combined with an awesome basswood body. It's got looks, for a budget guitar. Transparent red finish and a retro looking white pickguard. It has a Wilkinson kind of bridge but I've lost the tremolo bar, and never had the opportunity to test it properly. It's an old Fender style guitar and has S/S/S pickups, the bridge pickup is slanted. The tuners are non-locking but they seem to be sturdy.
Sound — 2
I play a lot of metal, ranging from heavy to black. I also play blues and classic rock. At low volumes on my Roland 15XL amp, this guitar actually sounds good for metal. I've raised my bridge and neck pickups and lowered my mid because I never play on it. Turning the FX settings to Overdrive or Distortion on my amp gives it a great blues/rock sound but some of the clarity is lost. Turn it to Extreme and you get a great sound for metal riffs. The slick maple board is tough to play on though and I'd prefer a grippy rosewood one.
Once you start playing on louder volumes though, the guitar shows its weakness. Those single coils sound extremely harsh and I lose a lot of clarity. It's not the amp, because my friend has the same one paired with an Ibanez. It just doesn't work onstage unless you use tons of effects. You tend to get sweaty onstage too and if the sweat gets on your fretboard, your playing goes down the drain as it's so slippery. I have to wipe down the fretboard every couple of days. Maybe I just have sweaty hands?
Action, Fit & Finish — 3
The factory setup was average, but as my guitar skills progressed, I changed almost everything on it. Pickup heights, intonation, action. Factory settings didn't really suit any kind of music. I can't say anything about fit and finish, but I think it's good because, over 10 years, I've never had to look underneath the pick guard. The hardware could withstand an apocalypse. I've dropped it onto hard marble floors a couple of times and nothing really happened apart from a tiny dent in the body. There's a few scratched here and there but they're barely noticeable and the lacquer really stood up to the test of time.
Reliability & Durability — 4
As I said, this could withstand the apocalypse. Everything works perfectly and I've never had issues with it. For such a cheap guitar it's built pretty well. This field is supposed to have at least 500 characters? Sorry guys I'm just gonna copy and paste here. As I said, this could withstand the apocalypse. Everything works perfectly and I've never had issues with it. For such a cheap guitar it's built pretty well. As I said, this could withstand the apocalypse. Everything works perfectly and I've never had issues with it. For such a cheap guitar it's built pretty well.
Overall Impression — 3
This is not the guitar for me. It doesn't suit my type of music. If I played rock and blues much more, I'd probably love it. But it just won't do metal. Makes my ears hurt onstage, and I dread to think of the audience. Maybe a bass guitarist could make up for the shrill treble. I've been playing for 2 years, all of them with this guitar. If I lost this guitar, I'd probably get a Cort or Ibanez without thinking. There are loads of beginner guitars/budget guitars and this is just one more. If you ever think you'll take guitar seriously, don't buy this. It's great for casual stuff and messing around. If only it had a humbucker bridge and a rosewood fretboard... I would love it to bits.