Badwater El Dorado review by AXL

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  • Features: 7
  • Sound: 7
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 7
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 7.4 Good
  • Users' score: 8.8 (4 votes)
AXL: Badwater El Dorado

Price paid: $ 80

Purchased from: craigslist

Features — 7
Alder Tele-style body, rock maple neck, 21 fret rosewood fretboard, strat style hard tail bridge, 2 single coil "AXL Alnico" pups, 3 way pup switch, volume and tone knobs, factory "weathered" (relic'd, whatever you wanna call it). This guitar can also be used for beatings, painting, pregnancy tests, feeding squirrels, an Xbox controller, and many other random things to get my sincere, yet efficient, review over the 500 character minimum that is required for some reason I can't think of. I'm not so sure my review will make it considering all the filler I just typed but can a mod pm me with why each box needs to be 500 characters? I just wasted half an hour typing a sincere review.

Sound — 7
The stock AXL Alnico single coils are well above average for guitars that cost twice as much, imo. The bridge pup is a lil weak but sounds ok (I've replaced it with a SD QP recently though). The neck pup on the other hand is excellent! Thick, punchy, very bright but in a classy, not harsh way. Chords ring with clarity, leads sound thick and fluid, both with oomph (still gushing bout the neck pup here). I recently replaced the bridge pup with a SD Quarter Pounder but I still find myself using the stock neck pup most when I pick this guitar up. It's got the Fenderish jangle but with much more punch and not as crispy. Its not all that versatile, you wouldn't wanna chug on this guitar. It has a unique tone branched off of the Fenderish jangle tree but a whole lotta flavor for a low budget priced guitar. I'd give it a 9 if it weren't for the stock bridge pup sounding thin and week.

Action, Fit & Finish — 7
I bought the guitar used so it had a couple dings but was already set up ok, I just adjusted the truss rod and I was off. I am not a fan of factory relic guitars. Imo, relic'd guitars should be earned and natural. But when I tried it I was impressed enough to ignore the lame finish. I also get compliments on the relic finish even though, personally, I'm not a fan.

Reliability & Durability — 7
The tuners aren't the best, but it holds tune well enough that I haven't felt the need to replace them. If it were my main guitar, that would be an issue and I would suggest replacing them if you plan on using this guitar a lot. Everything else is great. I've had this guitar for about a year now and have had no issues whatsoever. Considering the price, I'd be tempted to give this guitar a 9. But the tuners drag it down to 7. Can I just write some random words to put me over 500 characters? I apologize for being efficient.

Overall Impression — 9
First off, I wanna mention that I'm writing this review because I have been thoroughly impressed by this guitar since I've had it. $80 players don't grow on trees (technically I'm wrong, but you know what I mean). I dabble in most genres but mostly prefer an "edge of break up" tone. This guitar fits my playing style quite well, the neck pup makes it one of my favorite guitars to play. I currently own 7 various electric guitars, 3 are tele-type, all but 2 are Single Coil/P90 and lately I've been playing through a Randall RM20 with the Blackface module. Its not all that common of a guitar so I probably wouldn't immediately replace with the same if lost or stolen. BUT, I will say, these guitars are cheap, I would NOT sell mine for twice the amount I paid for it. Perhaps not even at retail cost! For me, this guitar is a keeper for anytime I want a Tele tone with a bit of thick but defined oomph. Because of the price tag attached to these guitars, I give it a 9.

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