ML-1 review by Chapman Guitars

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 6.4 (53 votes)
Chapman Guitars: ML-1
0

Price paid: £ 200

Purchased from: andertons.co.uk

Sound — 10
The sound is fantastic considering it comes with cheap factory pickups, Rob Chapman said himself even though there cheap they are full of rich tone, I have kept the stock pickups as I like them alot they really are great, for 200 pounds you van not go wrong at all, I am an experienced guitar luthier and musician and I have never came across anything like this the price is unbelievable for what you get real ebony, real mahogany everything is just fantastic, there only 500 made hence the certificate I have 2 of them one is number 10 and one is 274 there great guitars I have sprayed one flat white and has bareknuckle pickups and ice kept the other one completely stock the tone is fantastic the Bridge is nice and HOT and the neck is warm and full of clarity and tone.

Overall Impression — 10
I own Gibson's, PRS's, Fenders all the high end stuff and I always come back to this instrument and I'm a luthier! Take my word for it there fantastic!

Reliability & Durability — 10
This guitar is very heavy duty!

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The guitar was not set up in the factory and had a fairly high action, the pickup height was spot on and did not need adjustment, the body was perfectly routed and all the cavity's were spot on, in fact other than a basic setup I, e intonation, action, truss rod (which hardly needed thumb pressure to get perfect!) the only thing the guitar seriously needs was a basic fret dress you can do at home with some masking tape and metal polish and maybe a small ceramic stone to touch up any fret buzz, it did not really need it but I'm a metal guitarist I need the strings to glide smoothly and that way the only reason other than the fact it frets look good shiny.

Features — 10
This guitar came with a padded gig bag, trem bar, cable, certificate of authenticity and a trem block. For those of you who do not know or heard of Rob Chappers he is guitarist that has gained high popularity on youtube and was offered his own guitar company due to his success and designed a guitar (3 models now!) with his fans on youtube in a forum and the guitar was designed by his fans on a vote with diffirent body woods/shapes, hardware etc, and is the only collaborative design guitar company in the world and this is not a beginner guitar its made as a blank canvas for you to upgrade top quality woods and hardware just add the pickups!, the Chapman ML1 has a:

- solid mahogany body (2piece)
- shallow "C" maple neck
- ebony fretboard
- reverse "telecaster" style headstock
- Grover rotomatic machine heads (18.1 ratio)
- Wilkinson encased trem Bridge (saddles are compressed together to prevent movement and to enhance sustain)
- shadow kill pot
- coil tap
- 3 way selector switch
- flat black finish with satin neck
- pick-up configuration: H.S.S

22 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Robchappers
    The Pickle Man wrote: Rob Chapman is a joke.
    Knock knock, Who's there, Rob Chapman - now shut up bitch!
    Symphonica
    Seref wrote: My mate owns one, and I've played it extensively so here-so my take: Firstly, I'm one of those people that thinks no guitar deserves 10s unless it's made out of diamonds and comes with submissive Scarlett Johansson clone. But that said, this is a very good guitar. I'm not even going to say "good for the money," it's just flat out good. The woods are excellent, the tuners hold (grover rotomatics, about as good as you can get without locking tuners), and bridge works perfectly. The fretting is well set and crowned. The finish is a kind of blackish brownish reddish natural matte thing. Even finish, no imperfections that I could see. The stock pickups are alright. I know plenty of people that love the stock bridge humbucker (it's an overwound ceramic--very full but with plenty of emphasis on the upper mids), but it wasn't my cup of tea. The single coils are about as crap as most Chinese factory single coils. My biggest gripe is with the electronics. The Kill Pot is annoying to have on the volume control if you're a player that fiddles with volume swells a lot. The tone pot as a push-pull but with the taper and scratchiness of a cheap Alpha brand or worse. The switch came loose and we have since replaced it with a Switchcraft 3-way toggle. All in all, for 200 GBP this is probably the best guitar to have ever existed in that price range. That said, there is always stuff you can improve on. That was the point of ths guitar really--Rob designed the ML1 with the intention of having the highest quality non-replaceable (or expensive to replace) parts like the neck, body, bridge, and tuners, but using barebone cheap factory pieces for everything else so you can modify it to your specifications. I can't speak for my friend, but if I were the owner and it was lost or stolen I'd certainly by another. At 200 GBP there's little reason not to. Combined with the fact that it is a limited run (production has stopped, Anderton's is selling off the remaining stock), its value could even inflate in the future depending on how well Rob's new band does. Through my experiences, I'd give this guitar an 8.
    Dude... if you were going to write a review, why didn't you just post it?
    Seref
    My mate owns one, and I've played it extensively so here-so my take: Firstly, I'm one of those people that thinks no guitar deserves 10s unless it's made out of diamonds and comes with submissive Scarlett Johansson clone. But that said, this is a very good guitar . I'm not even going to say "good for the money," it's just flat out good. The woods are excellent, the tuners hold (grover rotomatics, about as good as you can get without locking tuners), and bridge works perfectly. The fretting is well set and crowned. The finish is a kind of blackish brownish reddish natural matte thing. Even finish, no imperfections that I could see. The stock pickups are alright. I know plenty of people that love the stock bridge humbucker (it's an overwound ceramic--very full but with plenty of emphasis on the upper mids), but it wasn't my cup of tea. The single coils are about as crap as most Chinese factory single coils. My biggest gripe is with the electronics. The Kill Pot is annoying to have on the volume control if you're a player that fiddles with volume swells a lot. The tone pot as a push-pull but with the taper and scratchiness of a cheap Alpha brand or worse. The switch came loose and we have since replaced it with a Switchcraft 3-way toggle. All in all, for 200 GBP this is probably the best guitar to have ever existed in that price range. That said, there is always stuff you can improve on. That was the point of ths guitar really--Rob designed the ML1 with the intention of having the highest quality non-replaceable (or expensive to replace) parts like the neck, body, bridge, and tuners, but using barebone cheap factory pieces for everything else so you can modify it to your specifications. I can't speak for my friend, but if I were the owner and it was lost or stolen I'd certainly by another. At 200 GBP there's little reason not to. Combined with the fact that it is a limited run (production has stopped, Anderton's is selling off the remaining stock), its value could even inflate in the future depending on how well Rob's new band does. Through my experiences, I'd give this guitar an 8.
    MM14
    The Pickle Man wrote: Rob Chapman is a joke.
    I'd love to see your guitar company
    jungkvist
    All in all: having a very good foundation, with an I on modification, is a nice nice idea. And, if the guiat,s native tone is good enough, it's certainly worth the time an money to get what you want. Seem like that was what made Fender successful in the first place. Luthier? Could be! He might just trying to be accesable. Known several and Really: I've come to veiw the term as nebulous. But, it all seems moot, if the guitar was only a liminted run! Still, top of my head, seem USA money, it'w What: $300? Add solder, parts & labor, you might have a hellava axe for $500: Doesn't matter if it's this one or not!
    Jsteele1408
    Symphonica wrote: Dude... if you were going to write a review, why didn't you just post it?
    Because if he did post it, UG would probably filter it out and instead accept an all 10's review from someone that just started playing guitar this morning.
    Ibeanez wrote: Lol at noob reviewers talking about how great the woods are when the damn thing is nearly painted black.
    ... What does the paint have to do with the quality of the wood?
    Seref
    Ibeanez wrote: Lol at noob reviewers talking about how great the woods are when the damn thing is nearly painted black.
    I applaud your attempt to know what you are talking about. Wood quality is not solely aesthetic. A good quality wood is determined by location of growth, tightness of grain structure, presence of knots and sapwood, moisture content, grain direction, and so on and so forth. All those things still matter no matter how its painted. What you are thinking about is how the wood looks, which is quite narrow minded.
    iamjinkazama
    seriously? a luthier with that review? i have the greatest respect for luthiers, the ones i've known always seemed to be the most knowledgeable guys. you're either a bad luthier, or a big fat liar.
    Krai91
    Good guitar. Much better than most of the guitars for that amount of money.
    pushcarich
    wow i cant beleive someone actually reveiw this guitar. umm ive never personally played one but i hear they are pretty decent.
    Kear Bear
    dale-banez wrote: Damn, I thought this was going to be a review of a chapman stick...
    me too =(
    adambauman31
    Seref wrote: Ibeanez wrote: Lol at noob reviewers talking about how great the woods are when the damn thing is nearly painted black. I applaud your attempt to know what you are talking about. Wood quality is not solely aesthetic. A good quality wood is determined by location of growth, tightness of grain structure, presence of knots and sapwood, moisture content, grain direction, and so on and so forth. All those things still matter no matter how its painted. What you are thinking about is how the wood looks, which is quite narrow minded.
    Right, but you can't see the grain structure or knots and sapwood, moisture content, and what not because its painted black. I think thats the point he was trying to make
    richyt93
    I have one. For 200 I couldn't refuse. Its an awesome guitar, won't be needing a new one anytime soon. Unless of course some of the pricks on here see sense and try to steal mine.
    Ibeanez
    Lol at noob reviewers talking about how great the woods are when the damn thing is nearly painted black.
    Twistedrock
    Robchappers wrote: The Pickle Man wrote: Rob Chapman is a joke. Rob, did I ever tell you how much I love you? Knock knock, Who's there, Rob Chapman - now shut up bitch!
    Seref
    adambauman31 wrote: Seref wrote: Ibeanez wrote: Lol at noob reviewers talking about how great the woods are when the damn thing is nearly painted black. I applaud your attempt to know what you are talking about. Wood quality is not solely aesthetic. A good quality wood is determined by location of growth, tightness of grain structure, presence of knots and sapwood, moisture content, grain direction, and so on and so forth. All those things still matter no matter how its painted. What you are thinking about is how the wood looks, which is quite narrow minded. Right, but you can't see the grain structure or knots and sapwood, moisture content, and what not because its painted black. I think thats the point he was trying to make
    But those things have little to do with how it looks. It has to do with sustain and transfer of vibrations.