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It has 22 frets on a maple fingerboard with Diamond inlays. The neck is quite fat, features jumbo frets and is bolted to the body. The neck is maple and the body is alder - the best configuration of tonewoods. The finish is a custom skulls finish specified personally by Michael Wilton.
unregistered, on november 15, 2012 0 of 4 people found this review helpful
Price paid: £ 399
Purchased from: GAK (Guitar, Amp & Keyboard)
Features: This guitar was made in Korea, not sure of the year. It is the Michael Wilton (of Queensryche) Signature Guitar, It has 22 frets on a maple fingerboard with Diamond inlays. The neck is quite fat, features jumbo frets and is bolted to the body. The neck is maple and the body is alder - the best configuration of tonewoods. The finish is a custom skulls finish (butt-ugly) specified personally by Michael Wilton. It also has two Duncan Designed singlecoils and one Seymour Duncan JB in the HSS configuration. The electronics are passive. This also features an Original Floyd Rose tremolo and Sperzel Locking Tuners. For this price I also had a hardcase included. The finish loses three points. // 7
Sound: My music is metal and rock, and this guitar does the latter better, the Seymour Duncan JB handing out the ultimate solo tone on a silver platter and the singlecoils scrubbing up nicely for chilling blues licks. I just use my Marshall Valvestate VS65R. For proper bone-chilling metal, I plug in my DigiTech Hardwire TL2 Metal Distortion pedal to strip paint of the walls. The guitar is incredibly versatile, though (without the pedal). The fact that to acheive crushing metal tones I had to use a pedal loses one point. // 9
Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar had pretty high action when I got it, that allowed me to get an insane pull-up range on the Floyd but also sacrificed playability. And although a slightly curved fretboard allows for better bends, they fade out eventually and flat fingerboards are better when it comes to shredding. The pickup Switch was pretty quiet, the pickups were adjusted well, but the tone control fell off after about 2 months of gentle handling.
I have mentioned this earlier, but I feel duty bound to say it again. The skulls finish is butt-ugly, not even slightly going with the chrome hardware, maple fingerboard and headstock. I may actually pay someone to spray black over the skulls so it is slightly less ugly. The fingerboard loses one point, the loose knob loses one point and the finish loses three points. // 5
Reliability & Durability: This guitar should withstand Live playing, the hardware did seem like it would last, *cough* until the tone knob fell off. The strap buttons are rock hard. To be honest, I wouldn't gig with it. I have better guitars. The finish is good enough to last (damn!) and overall the guitar is pretty solidly built. // 9
Overall Impression: I play metal and this guitar is made for people wanting to nail Queensryche's tone. I only bought this guitar because at the time, I had never experienced a natural satin finish neck before. I also was amazed at the Original Floyd and Duncan pickups at the price, and thought the finish would be a compromise, especially for the price. But every day I look at it again and again, and think how ugly it is and I am filled with a slight sense of wonder. What if I had just tried out the Ibanez RG420EX or the BC Rich Mockingbirdbefore I bought the ESP! The guitar is great, except for the finish. Man, I wish I had that Ibanez (sighs). // 7
GunLeatherGuy, on november 26, 2012 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Price paid: $ 400
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Features: Its an Korean made guitar, as all of the 600's are. Its the basic Alder Black body with the Skulls (yes, I knew what they were when I bought it and wont discount the finish for my "poor taste") Maple neck and fretboard, 22 frets, Diamond inlay markers, Ping Floyd (not original but 95% as good) and Seymour Duncan Pups. All in all there isn't anything it wont play. The JB will do Jazz to Metal and the singles, although lacking real Vintage sound, fake it pretty well in most situations. I love the shape and girth of the neck and the way it feels in my hands. // 9
Sound: I play around with Blues to some metal. The pickups don't limit what the guitar will play at all. You can leave the amp alone on a higher gain setting and play some EVH, move to the neck/middle combo, roll down the volume and play some nice Blues. The only thing lacking in this combination is the right pedal or amp, to get the sound you want. If you can think of it this guitar will play it. I did rewire this guitar with new CTS pots, Orange drop and new wiring... It all helped it sound the way it should. // 8
Action, Fit & Finish: I bought it used so none of this really counts. The frets were good, tuners worked well (why do people care what tuners the have on a double locking trem anyway? They don't do anything?) Anyway, I always setup my guitars to my liking anyway. Frets the way they should be, proper relief. Just a tad, action as low as possible without buzz and with an OFR guitar a set of heavy bottom 9's or 10's. I like regular EB Slinkies. The quality of this guitar is actually very nice. The paint/skulls are done nicely as is the finish on the neck. // 9
Reliability & Durability: Honestly the only thing I could improve on, I did. The pots ESP uses on their LTD line are not the worst but not the best either. Replace the pots, switch, wiring and plug and you have a whole new guitar. It lets the nice pups (including the singles) sound a hell of a lot better. The rest of the guitar is top notch... I love the Ping Floyd, the XJ frets are nice for bends, the woods used are up to par and I love Maple fretboards. Its a basic super Strat that is very well made, like the higher end GL models! // 8
Overall Impression: I play mostly rock. I'm not a pro at playing, but know higher end guitars. I've owned Japanese ESP's, Ib Prestige, USA Hamers, Music Man, Carvins, USA Charvels etc... This guitar isn't as nice as most of the others but in all honesty its pretty close for a lot less money. They sell for 1000$ on eBay which makes me laugh! Oh Boy... I wish ESP would use better electronics like on there Japanese lineup but you get what you pay for. I love this guitar. I have a reworked ST203 FR that plays the same and its one of my favorites also.