Price paid: $ 375
Purchased from: Music & Arts
Sound — 10
I'm a noob for the longest time. I'm running this guitar through a 10watt SP-10 amp. Very nice cleans. That amp came with a Fender starcaster pack. The pick ups pushes that amp. The clean channel is crystalline. For me, the neck pickup is great with strummed chords and plucking, for the bridge it has just enough bite for me. I can't really hear how it sounds since I'm running it through an SP-10 who has less than favorable "overdrive" channel. The pickups for me are just right. I don't have much access to other guitars to really say how much will it measure up sound-wise. Maybe other senior members can help us with this.
Overall Impression — 9
I can make an SP-10 squeal with this guitar, can't wait to use it on a Tech 21 Trademark 30 or on a Vox AC4TV. I'm sure it will sound much more better. I have no regrets buying this guitar even with the issue I have with the knobs. Again, not a deal breaker, but it could be improved. I would definitely buy this guitar again if it got lost or stolen. For a starting guitarist who's still to find his tone, I know this guitar is a good place for me to start. It's just perfect the way it is. I could have opted for another guitar if I need other features not offered by the Traditional Pro.
Reliability & Durability — 8
I've been reading things about Epi's not staying in tune. Mine seems stable. I'm playing my guitar 3 to 4 hours a day and it stays in tune. I had to file off a little bit of the nut to accommodate the bigger strings that the set I'm using. I've checked the cavities and the wiring seem professionally done. I didn't use the included straplocks. It seems sturdy but a Schaller offers me a better peace of mind. As I have said earlier, the finish is just immaculate, but I really have no way of knowing if it will last. I have banged the headstock against the wall several times, some paint was chipped of but no major flaws. I'm still to prove its worthiness for a gig, but it seems solid enough to offer a hassle free playing.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
When I got this guitar, the action was just perfect. No buzz at all. I changed my strings to D'Addario XL115's and it developed a buzz on the 5th fret of the low E string. Nothing a quarter turn of the bridge screw wouldn't cure. The neck bridge was a tad low so I had to raise it a little. It changed the sound for the better. My guitar came in wine red, the finish for the top was just immaculate. The neck and back is satin finished. The neck was just tactile. The neck is binded and finished nice. The only problem I had with this guitar are the knobs. There are no problems on the pots. No scratchy sound when I twist it fast both ways, but the knobs were inserted in a twisted way. Of the four control knobs, the bridge tone was the only one who's inserted straight. The other knobs turn funny. No effect on the sound, its just irritating to touch and to see it turn. I read that a person who bought the same guitar suffered the manufacturing flaw. Its not a deal breaker, but I wish it wasn't that way so the guitar will just be perfect.
Features — 10
My guitar was purchased at Music and Arts. The guitar retails for 400 dollars but the store gave me a 25 dollar discount. Not bad for a holiday surprise. I think it was a good buy but I had to wait for 2 weeks for it to arrive. I received it just after Christmas and I was mesmerized on how it looks. The features posted on Epi's website holds true. I have lifted the feature list from Epi's website and they are as follows: - Body: mahogany - Top: mahogany - Neck: mahogany - Neck Profile: SlimTaper "D" profile - Fingerboard: rosewood with trapezoid mother-of-pearl inlay - Scale: 24.75 - Nut: 1.68 - Neck Pickup: Open "Zebra Coil" Alnico Classic Pro humbucker w/coil tapping - Bridge Pickup: Open "Zebra Coil" ProBucker-3 humbucker w/coil tapping - Controls: Neck Volume, Neck Tone, Bridge Volume, Bridge Tone - Bridge: LockTone Tune-O-Matic - Tailpiece: StopBar - Hardware: Nickel - Machine Heads: Grover I had to buy a hard case since it doesn't come with one. The allen key, strap locks and all other documents comes in a plastic bag. For a first time mid-ranged guitar buyer, I think this one perfectly fits my needs, my playing skill and music style. For my requirements, this is spot-on.