Venom review by DBZ Guitars

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 6.8 (52 votes)
DBZ Guitars: Venom

Price paid: £ 600

Purchased from: Promenade music

Sound — 8
I play mainly metal, Metallica, Maiden etc but I also play some blues and classic rock and I bought this guitar because I have experienced 81/85's before and was pleased with the result but wanted to get a V to encourage me to play more standing up than sat on my backside. I am using this with a Roland Cube 40XL and a DigiTech Metal Master pedal. For metal this guitar is awesome, it crunches and pushes the low end out really well and also deals with the high end although it does ring out a bit for which I am knocking a point off for although this is more likely to be the amp and my ability. Getting no excessive noise currently from the pickups with only a small amount of buzz when cranked up full. I have only briefly played it on a clean setting but it seems to give a nice crisp sound that in no way feels out of character even with its metal look. I currently own the Ibanez MTM-2 and an Epiphone LP Standard Plus and sound wise I think the Ibanez just pips the DBZ but that is down to the blackouts it has which are better than the EMG's in my opinion. Pinch harmonics combined with the floyd rose scream out on this guitar though and it really does seem to love divebombs with no loss of tuning even after a few hours of playing around. In summary low end awesome but it does ring out a little on the high end stuff so again I will give this an 8 as its not quite as impressive as the Ibanez sound wise for metal but as a rock guitar the difference between the 2 pickups gives it a versatility that the MTM doesn't have.

Overall Impression — 8
Overall impression is fantastic. Suits my music style, looks awesome, sounds great even if I would rather have blackouts in it, the difference in the pick ups make it more versatile than the Ibanez I have. As an out and out metal guitar I would say the MTM-2 just better sit but as an overall rock guitar I would say the DBZ is more suited due to the versatility. Wish I had ordered a hard case with it spit arrived perfect but that's stupid TNT's fault nobody else's. If it got nicked I would replace it as have loved the look of this guitar since I first saw it 2 years ago. Love the Floyd rose as again have wanted this feature for a while to give me something to help develop my own style. The points concern me and the one thing that will always draw me to this axe is the look, it is a beautiful piece of kit. If I had the money I would get the snake skin one as it is that impressive. I just need to get a tube amp now my style is coming so I can see just how goodie can sound as whilst my modelling Roland is good, I think the tube would really push this guitar and show what it is truly capable of. Overall I would give this an 8 and I hope you all feel that's fair. For me it's a 10 but for a review that doesn't help anyone. I love it, you might not!

Reliability & Durability — 8
No issues at all with this thing withstanding live playing. My only concerns would be the pointiness of it as already there has been the incident mentioned previously so to keep it looking a1 it will need treating well but aren't all pointy V's like that? Hardware is solid, strap buttons are solid and the finish looks like it will last. I would definitely gig with it and I would always take a backup when using a Floyd rose due to set up times and at the end of the day you never know when a string will break. Scoring this an 8 again due to the points!

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Guitar was setup fairly well although the action was a little high for me and the g string was dead. Nothing a bit of tinkering didn't sort out so only a minor inconvenience. TNT ignored the fragile stickers and managed to ding the headstock which was hugely disappointing but I can't fault the store or DBZ for this and they compensated me for this and I have fixed the dent at no cost and it is now not a noticeable issue. Pickups were set up great as was the Floyd rose and the finish was as I have experienced from previous DBZ's I have owned and that is faultless. They are a really high quality instrument for reasonable money. Again scoring an eight due to having to tinker with the action slightly.

Features — 8
I believe it's is a 2010 model made in Korea. Not sure on the factory and can't seem to find anything specific to detail exactly which one. It has a mahogany v shaped body with DBZ's nice contouring across the top and a set mahogany neck with a rosewood fingerboard. 24 jumbo frets on a 25.5" scale v shaped neck. It has a slightly satin silver finish and as said before this guitar is DBZ's take on the flying V. It has an original Floyd rose double locking trem with a 3 way selector, 1 volume and 1 tone pot. Grover tuners and EMG 81/85 active pickups. No other accessories with it which means I am now in need of a case as its very pointy! I am giving this an 8 as I would have preferred the American version for the unique headstock mainly, which is something I don't have but import duty scuppered that plan. All in all features wise it has everything I want on it all of which are on first impressions appear good quality original items.

12 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Anyone else read that as Dragon Ball Z guitars?
    Municipal Waste
    Pretty sick guitar. I like the shape, but I think I would prefer the Bird of Prey. That extra wing is clutch for sitting down.
    The bird of prey is in reality the same guitar but with the extra wing. I considered it as it was cheaper for the bird of prey but I. Just wanted a standard v so payed the extra. I have only played the bc rich mockingbird so I can't compare the 2 brands fairly. This is my 3rd dbz and not had a bad one yet so I would pick it over a bc rich. Just personal!
    Have upgraded the amp to a blackstar ht-5 and this thing sounds incredible. Not ringing anywhere near as much and coupled with the bad monkey OD pedal it is sweeter than ever. I would now say this is bette than the MTM-2. Sound wise this would now be upped to a 9/10
    EpiExplorer wrote: I was considering this as a replacement for my B.C.Rich V... The Rich has better build quality.
    Quite the contrary, BC Riches are made in Far East and recently sport a terrible building quality. DBZs are extreme axes, I agree, love it/ hate it type, again I agree, but they are far better made than any BC Rich. Also, better than Deans (knowing that DBZ means Dean B. Zelinski, who after selling Dean Guitars twice, has founded DBZ only a few years ago.)
    Considering Dean designed the original Flying V for Gibson, I'm pretty sure he can make his own.
    The Abdullah
    I really don't get the voting on this one, overall rating of 7.2, not counting that the original reviewer bumped up his score to 9 in a comment? It's a great guitar, EMG 81/85 and an OFR can hardly go wrong, and it certainly hasn't over here. It's only a problem if you dislike active pickups/V shaped necks.
    I was considering this as a replacement for my B.C.Rich V... The Rich has better build quality.