Price paid: A$ 700
Purchased from: Artie's Music
Sound — 8
This Jag has a very full and dark sound. I play mostly metal and alternative rock (Parkway Drive, Trivium, Smashing Pumpkins, Nirvana, STP, etc) so I got this guitar mainly to play the alternative rock side or my repertoire and it does this nicely. It does lack a little big of hi end treble but that's not really a problem for me. I play it into a Vox Valvetronix AD120VT and a Marshall MG100HDFX and sounds nice through both. Sounds really grungy with my Boss DS1 pedal. Handles distortion really well and has heaps of sustain.
Overall Impression — 9
I am extremely happy with this Jag. It's a great first Fender as I've played Gibsons all my playing time and it's great for a change. Exactly what I wanted, a no crap, plug in and play guitar with no bells and whistles, no Floyd Rose this, and locking tuners that, just raw Fender guitar with wicked sustain and b-tchin' low tone. Would be nice to have 5 way pick up wiring like the Strat does but other than that I am supper happy with it.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I would be happy to thrash the crap out of this guitar all night long on a same tuneing set. No worries. I strangle this thing and it stays in tune really well and I have gigged it a few times with no back up guitars. I can't wait until it gets some wear on the body paint and looks like a real gig worn guitar, but the finish and hard wear seem really well made so I can't see that happening any time soon.
Action, Fit & Finish — 5
Out of the box it was perfect bar one thing, crappy strings and that made the action low and buzzy. I am nie running a set of Ernie Ball Slinky Top Heavy Bottoms and that brought the action up a little bit and required very little adjustment there after. Intonation was excellent and required very little adjusting. After that was sorted it played very nicely. But for a straight out of the box rating I am rating this poorly due to it being practically unplayable with the action that low. Other than that, it was unmarked and no pitting or scratches on the hard wear. No little dags of wood or paint or anything like that.
Features — 8
Fenders new Mexican built Blacktop Stratocaster is fantastic value for your buck and as is the 24 inch scale brother the Blacktop Jaguar. Dual over-wound Alnico humbucking pickups make it Drive like mad and the 24 inch scale makes it supper slinky, while keeping everything simple as a child's toy with single volume and tone control and three way pick up selector switch. Other features include an alder body, maple neck with 9.5"-radius rosewood fretboard, 22 medium jumbo frets, gloss polyester finish and heaps of chrome!