NJ Jr-V review by B.C. Rich

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.7 (42 votes)
B.C. Rich: NJ Jr-V

Price paid: $ 579.99

Purchased from: Beyond Eleven

Sound — 10
I play mostly metal and I use a DigiTech Metal Master pedal through the clean channel of any amp to achieve the sound I want. I just want to get that out there to give the reader an idea of what type of sound I'm going for (heavy as hell). The sound of this guitar is terrific. When it first arrived I only had a small Peavey practice amp (25watts), but there was a substantial improvement in sound from my Ibanez RG2EX1. However, I recently purchased an Ibanez TBX150R combo amp (150watts) and upon it's arrival I finally was able to appreciate what this guitar is capable of. Obviously, the EMG 81/85 pickup combo sounds terrific. But what stood out to me was the sustain and resonance provided by the neck-through design. It's often said that tremolo systems reduce sustain due to routing of body and the fact that the tremolo itself is only held in place by mounting studs and a spring system. I've heard both sides of that argument and this review is obviously not the place for it, but I bring this up just to illustrate how impressed I was (rightfully or not) by the sustain/resonance provided by this guitar in spite of the presence of a floating tremolo. As said, I attribute this to the neck-through construction (but I'm no expert). The natural sound of this guitar is warm, as opposed to bright; and also very full. Having said that, you can achieve a good deal of tones depending on your equipment. The Original Floyd Rose is also terrific. A bitch to set-up, but sturdy as a rock and holds tuning very well. I think I've gone on enough here. This guitar sounds phenomenal. You surely wouldn't want to take it to a Hee-Haw for some good ole country pickin' 'n' grinnin'. But if you want to remove the first two layers of skin from somebody's face, this guitar would do the trick.

Overall Impression — 10
As mentioned above, I play mostly metal. This guitar is perfect for that and then some. I've been playing for just over two years and spent over a year looking at guitars of different styles. Although I had heard BC Rich guitars from late 90s and early 2000s were shit, I settled with this guitar because I had heard great things about it and the price was unbelievable give the features. I mean, just look at the price of the features if individually purchased: EMG 81/85 combo - $210 Original Floyd Rose - $160 Grover Tuners - $40-50? That comes to just over $400. When combined with the maple neck-through mahogany body, full pearl binding, and ebony fretboard you get a guitar that you would expect to be sold for at least a grand. I got mine for $579.99 at Beyond Eleven, but they've gone up to 679.99 since then (although still cheaper than anywhere else that I've seen). This guitar is a steal at the price. B\.C\. Rich really seems to be making a serious attempt to regain it's reputation and have done incredibly well with this guitar. I was leaning toward a Jackson DKMG Dinky, but I couldn't be happier with the choice I made. Overall a better guitar. Note: I'd say the Jackson takes the playability comparison. This thing plays incredibly well and I love it. But I've not played a good Jackson that didn't practically play itself. So make of that what you will. I'd probably snag this guitar sooner rather than later if I were you. I assume the corporate cocks pulling the strings at either B\.C\. Rich or your "local authorized dealer" (hehe) will jack up the price on this guitar once it's reputation is solidified. I wouldn't foresee that taking too long, as I've yet to find a negative review for this guitar.

Reliability & Durability — 9
I've only had this guitar for close to a month, so durability hasn't been an issue at this point. However, the guitar seems very well made. I've nicked one of V fins so make sure you're very careful with this guitar. I'm not in a band so I've never done a gig. But I think you'd be an idiot to gig seriously without a back-up, regardless of what your guitar is. This thing has a very high-quality feel to it; built like a rock. I'm going to go with a 9 here because I'm concerned that the finish may not be able to withstand much. I'm not even sure how I nicked mine to begin with; I never noticed hitting anything with it before I saw the nick on the finish. Having said that, it's a guitar, not a tank. So I can't really deduct anything more than a point here (if any at all). Also, the strap buttons are solid and the guitar rests well while standing. Playing while sitting down is also no problem if you know how to rest the V on your right leg. Bottom Line: Great initial quality; only time will tell the rest.

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
The guitar arrived and had been set-up flawlessly. Beyond Eleven were terrific with their customer service when placing the order. I asked for strings that were substantially heavier than the stock ones and they changed them and re-setup the guitar perfectly without charging me a dime for it. The action is terrific. The finish is jet-black and the pearl binding really accentuates an already terrific look. The best part, in regard to cosmetics, is the ebony fretboard with pearl binding and single pearl inlay at the 12th fret. Honestly the best looking fretboard I've ever seen. The Ebony is absolutely amazing. I have no desire to ever buy a guitar with a rosewood fretboard again. Just for the record, I've since changed the tuning of the guitar in an attempt to learn how to set up the Floyd Rose. This took 1.5 hours; being my first time and all. So bare that in mind if you think about adjusting the original setup. Basically, don't forget to specify which tuning you want it setup in. I learned the hard way.

Features — 10
B\.C\. Rich NJ Jr. V Deluxe; Korean-made. Twenty-five and a half inch scale length; 24 frets (jumbo). Hard maple neck through flat-top v-shaped mahogany body; ebony fretboard Full mother of pearl binding; onyx (black) finish. Original Floyd Rose; active EMG pickups (81/85 combo). Two volume control knobs (1 per pickup); Single tone control knob. Grover tuning keys (very nice, but you don't have to tune this thing once you lock the nut so you won't be admiring them very often). Does not come with case or gig bag (C'mon, what do you expect at this price? ).

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