Price paid: $ 1921.5
Sound — 10
The sound on this guitar is excellent! I play many styles of music including rock, funk, old school metal and my favorite the blues, this guitar is capable of doing them all! The Lace Sensors prevent the usual noise you may expect from single coil pick ups and creates a sweet, crisp and warm tone. The active mid boost is disguised nicely as the 2nd and bottom tone control and provides a generous amount of extra power, volume and fat tone, this is perfect for that extra edge on solos. I play this guitar through a Fender Blues Deluxe and use a Marshall stomp box for distortion, with the right amount of reverb this guitar just sings. Having played many different guitars like Strats, Les Pauls, SG's, JEM's etc I find this guitar offers you a howling wolf disguised as a '50s style Strat. Plug this baby in and let the wolf come out to play! I believe that there are very few guitars on the market that can offer you this much tone variation.
Overall Impression — 10
I have been playing for 10 years and rarely does a guitar speak to me, this one does! I love the fact it is a '50s style Strat with that extra bite and superb variation in tone. I love the look, feel and craftmanship. If you want a guitar that will give you the flexabilty of playing blues, funk and rock, from the Rolling Stones to the Chili Peppers, from Clapton, Buddy Guy to Alice Cooper buy this guitar! Buddy Guy has been playing strats for over 40 years, if it is good enough for him it sure hell is good enough for me.
Reliability & Durability — 10
As long as it is looked after and stored in it's case when not used this guitar will last for decades. It is a professional guitar and feels and plays like it is! This guitar will be suitable in any given situation whether it be for gigging or studio work. The only thing I would say to anyone looking at buying this guitar is that if you are a tremolo abuser or a Dimebag Darrel fan than look elsewhere as this will not be one for you, however this guitar will offer you everything else.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
As with many guitars the factory set ups are middle of the road and may need to be amended to suite personal preference and style, once I recieved this guitar I had it set up by a professional guitar tech so I could judge and get it's real protential. The guitar allows for a low to medium action without fret buzz and loss of sustain. I have the tremolo locked down like a lot of blues players to give the feel of a hard tail, this will allow for detuning if needed. The 2 tone sunburst finish is flawless and allows you to see the lovely look of the Ash body. The soft V shape maple neck is smooth and feels strong with the Satin Polyurethane Finish helping to prevent your thumb from sticking. This guitar is very simular to the older '90s Clapton strats, but I find that the attention to detail and overall feel is slightly better.
Features — 10
Buddy Guy USA artist series, 22 vintage style frets, active mid-boost circuit, 1-Piece Maple Soft V Shape (satin polyurethane finish) neck, maple neck 9.5 radius (241mm), 2 tone sunburst light weight ash body, 3 Gold Fender Lace Sensor Strat pickups (neck, mid, bridge), Fender/Gotoh Vintage style tuning machines, American Vintage synchronized tremolo, comes complete with Fender Vintage tweed case and Fender pack including strap, polish, strap locks, lead etc.