Sound — 8
The guitar suits my musical style well, which ranges from Byrdsy jangle-pop, through to 'alternative rock' and slightly heaver psych. I also play a little jazzy stuff, just for fun. Between the two humbuckers theres enough for accoustic-ish strummable tones to searing lead lines. The stock pickups are fine although a little middle of the road. In an ideal world I'd swap them for something with a little bit more 'zing' but they are pretty good for a guitar of this price. The pickup select lever gets noisy but a little switch-cleaner quietens it down. It's been played through a Fender Hot Rod, Peavey solid state and a Peavey Classic 50 head and cab, where it really shines.
Overall Impression — 8
I love the look of the Sheraton and it's useful more much of my music where I want a richer creamier noise-free tone. I think it makes you look cool too, although for sheer playability I prefer a strat-style guitar and the wieght, while not a show stopper, does mean I probbaly don't move about with it as much as I do when playing a Strat. I have a early 90s US made Peavey Predator and a MIM Strat. If it was stolen or lost I would definately want another 335-style guitar, as I use those semi-accoustic humbucking tones a lot, but would probably shop around to see what else it out there. Unlike Strats, where you can make a case for a MIM being very close to a US in many regards, there's quite a big difference between a Sheraton and a Gibson 335. Ultimately I have the Sheraton because I can't afford the Gibson.
Reliability & Durability — 9
The guitar has been moderately gigged over the years and doesn't appear to have a mark on it. I respect my gear but I'm amazed there are no more than the tiniest stratches. The thick poly coating may look a little cheap but it does protect the guitar. It's a weighty guitar so straplocks will stop it breaking free.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
I'm never too bothered about what the set-up at the factory as I get my guitars set-up by a tech. I guess factory set-up was good! No finishing flaws I can see at all. It's well made. The gold effect tarnishes fairly quickly - after a few months the gold was rubbing off - but that just makes it look a little relic'ed.
Features — 8
I think I bought this guitar new in 2003. I like to buy used but used guitars were so close to new on this occasion I didn't bother. It's a pretty looking beastie with gold hardware, grover tuners, mother-of-pearl-effect block inlays. It looks much grander than the Epiphone Dot but with the heavy poly coating it still bears the hallmarks of a relatively cheap far-east Gibson 335 semi-accoustic copy. You get a hard case with it, but it's probably not one you'd want to check in at the airport.