Price paid: $ 839.5
Purchased from: zzounds.com
Sound — 9
It suits metal and hard rock perfectly, many people complain about the cleans but Switch it to the neck pickup and they sound great, I can easily get a good Guns N' Roses tone just as well as a heavy metal sound. I'm currently using it with a Crate XT120R (not the best but not the worst). With the active EMGs it can get very loud (buzzing, feedback) around things such as computers (but that's expected). Once you step away though you can barely hear the buzz and that's probly just my amps shitty distortion.
Overall Impression — 9
This guitar shines for metal (obviously) but it plays well in many other styles and I can get many tones from it. I've been playing for roughly 2 1/2 years and I own an Ibanez GRX20 (which sounds like crap compared to this) an old Ovation electric. I would definitely buy it again if it were stolen or lost. I love the finish and the pickups. I compared this to many other products including the elitist epiphones, and a few other LTD deluxe models.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar will definitely withstand Live playing. All the hardware seems solid and feels like it will last a long time. The strap buttons are alright, but it's recommended with any guitar to invest in strap locks, wouldn't want 840 to go to waste if your guitar hits the ground. I feel confident in saying I can depend on this guitar and that the only reason I wouldn't play without a backup are strings. I love the finish, the Vintage black is great because it doesnt't show fingerprints like crazy and will resist wear, also the gold on black looks great.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
Heres where I found most flaws, the guitar had extremely bad fret buzz with the factory set-up so I had to completely set it up starting with the truss rod, but then again many guitars require a new setup after they've been shipped. The pickups required little adjusting for a good sound. The finish was great, no flaws there all the routing looks well done. Once again I had a few problems here but most are extremely minor. Bridge pickup wouldn't work when switched to and you had to Switch back and fourth to get it to work (this problem has resolved itself, it doesnt't happen anymore). They were a bit messy when they glued the frets to the fretboard but it's hardly noticable. IN the binding on the neck there's not what I would call a scratch, but more of like an indent that's about an inch long very unnoticable. Everything else was as it should be, pickup selector works fine (beside earlier mentioned flaw, but that's done now) all the controls feel solid.