Price paid: £ 68
Purchased from: Internet
Sound — 8
Excellent straight rock guitar. Although the shape is a little Strat, the sound is different. Less Vintage sound, it's very clean and modern sounding. Considering the price the pups are very nice sounding except for the bridge Humbucher which I find a little thin without the depth we use humbuckers for. For Psychedelic Rock the neck pup is lovely. Giggable sound quality and quality. Modest single coil hum, may bother some. I'm used to it.
Overall Impression — 8
If you like a guitar you can bend really effortlessly. You can reliably hammer without weight training your fingers. It has an easy, easy low action. Most genres of rock and blues, some genres of metal sound good. Worth having as a second gig guitar as it loves 60's and 70's style solos. Tremolo unit amazingly responsive, but does not hold tuning perfectly. I find tuning overly sensitive to temperature changes as well. My Japanese Stratocaster never seems to need tuning. Bought the Aria Mac-35 as a new bargain on eBay. Very smart looking though indeed.
Reliability & Durability — 7
Strap buttons very solid. Does not feel as chunky or durable as a Fender Stratocaster. Longevity debatable. Feels solid but is a very sleek sexy guitar and may not liked to be banged around. Paintwork would definitely not stand it and I don't know if this guitar would look good as a relic guitar.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
Action fantastic and low. Sleek, not too heavy. Most playable guitar I have played and I have a collection of 15 guitar. Fender Telecaster, Fender Stratocasters, Hagstroms etc. Feels much better than my Les Paul copy. Of course to my ears the Teles and Strats sound better, but do not play anything like this baby. Never looked at electrics. Hardware and action perfect from start. Don't know if factory or retailer adjusted setup. Fantastic looking matt metallic colour.
Features — 8
Aria Mac-35 cutaway strattish guitar. Plum colour matt metallic. Made in China. It has an alder body and rosewood fingerboard, maple neck, 648mm scale, 24 frets, 2 single coil pups, 1 switchable bridge humbucker, tremolo unit. 5 way switchable, 1 volume, 1 tone, with 2 single coils 1 humbucker in bridge. Tuners a little basic but quite functional. Came without case or anything for that matter. Don't know the strings but they were very good. I will fit some Ernie Balls soon.