Price paid: $ 299
Purchased from: American musical
Sound — 10
I must say the sound is good but not great stock. To get the best out of this I dropped a duncan JB in the bridge, and viola instant beast. This is now a great sounding axe a little noisy, so a nsoise supressor is neede if you play realy loud. Very warm and punchy with just enough bite. I use this with a Bugera 333 and Krank rev 4x12 set up and it is gnarly, very gnarly. stock I give it a 5 moded its a 10.
Overall Impression — 10
For a "Budget" guitar, I think you'd be hard pressed to find a better made guitar for <$300( moded mine was still under $400! and sounds better than the Gibson SG Standard IMHO). This guitar will do just about any style of music bles, jazz, classic rock, hard rock stock. But if you want Metal swap out the p/u's. I've been playing for 16+ years and this is not just a beginners guitar. It is made well and even some of the best guitarest I know can't afford even $600 guitars and some who have $25,000 ones wouldn't hesitate at buying one of these. Yes if it were stolen I'd buy another one. This is the perfect guitar modding.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar should last for my kids one day. I play this live all the time with nothing but compliments on my sound(remember I did swap the Bridge p/u)and stock no one ever said it sounded bad. The wood is ery nice I only found 1 little knot in the wood near the head stock.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
Set up was aweful from the factory, but a little tlc and it plays very nice, the neck is fast(satin finish)and I love the profile(better than the Gibson versin IMO). The PU sounded muddy from the get go and adjusting the pole helped some, but not enough in my book. The constructin is amazing at this price point(I'm comparing this to a Gibson LP studio and a PRS CE 22).
Features — 9
I belive mine is an '08 made in China(incredibly well). 22 frets trapizoid inlays. Mahogany neck and body(satin worn brown finish) feals like med jumbo frets (don't quote me on that) very comefortable to play. Grover tuners 14:1(but I counted mine twice and they are 18:1!!!) Tune-o-matic style bridge. No binding. 2 tone, 2 volume and a 3 way switch. Pick-ups are average.