Purchased from: Quest Musique
Sound — 8
I like to play a variety of rock and metal, and I like experimenting and make up riffs and such, so heavy distortion and and good clean tone are equally important for me. I play through a Orange Crush 15R amp which I usually leave on the clean channel and rely on either my DigiTech signiture Dan Donegan (Disturbed) 'The Weapon' pedal or sometimes my DigiTech Grunge for distortion. I also use a Behringer delay pedal, and my 'The Weapon' has a good variety of effects besides plain distortion. It all works well with my guitar.With a clean setting the neck pickup has a nice mellow tone which is perfect for playing stuff like broken chords and the like, ala Stairway to Heaven. With both pickups selected you get a good mix of the neck pu's mello sound with the bridge pu's more prounouced punchier brighter sound. The Bridge pickup selected gives a cool growling type sound that's almost distorted, cool for some Metallica stuff. When I play with distortion the neck pick up performs the best for chording and you can hear every note, both pickups selected is also good for chords as well as any other techniques and has a more heavier tone, the bridge pick up is good for power chords making the sound nice and heavy, and it works good for lead. The pickups don't make any noises so that's good and for stock they seem to be high quality. I'd need a more high gain amp to see truly how well it handles exteme metal distortion. But I'm definatly content with the cleans.
Overall Impression — 8
I play stuff like AC/DC, Metallica, Billy Talent, Megadeth, Led Zeppelin and whatever else catches my ear at the moment, I'm constantly learning new songs, and this guitar pretty much covers every kind of tone I want. I've been playing a year and 15 days now and I don't regret buying this beauty even though it was the first electric guitar I ever touched. It has quite a cool unique yet classy look, like someone took a Les Paul smacked it around until it looked good (just kidding). It's overall a comfortable easy to use instrument. I'd drop kick anyone Who tries to lay a finger on it without my permission, much steal less it. I've tried other guitars like a SG and a Shecter and it only made me more satisfied with what I already had. In the future I plan on getting a more shredtastic superstrat guitar with a tremelo bridge and easier neck access.
Reliability & Durability — 8
I treat my guitar generally well, I've smacked the headstock a number of times against things but no harm done. Nothings come loose on the guitar and it's solid, no problem with strap locks or any thing like that. I've played it infront of a few minor audiences before, no big deal. Seeing as it's my only guitar a backup isn't much of an option but it doesn't worry me. The finish is nice and glossy and smooth looks to be a fair thinkness, the gloss has a few small chips in it but the grey still covers all.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
The guitar was setup not bad when I bought though I didn't know what I was doing for a while, but after a while I noticed that there was some fret buzz that muted the 1st fret notes, that was easily fixed by raising the bridge. The action is now quite comfortable. There are a few minor things that are a little annoying: when the tone knob is turned up it causes a buzzing noise, and I tried doing the tremelo effect a little too much with the volume knob and now it makes a kind of hissing ring sound when it's only turned halfway, I always have have it full volume anyway. Also the pickups rattle slightly when I hit certain notes and the when I play the 15th fret on the bass E string there is some fret buzz behind my hand around the 7th fret. But those are thing you never notice while plugged into an amp. Everything else is just super.
Features — 8
I bought this guitar in 2006, the sticker on the back of the neck says made in China. It has 22 frets, and the neck scale is about 24 1/2" guesstimatingly. The neck has a slim 'C' shaped profile so it is comfortable but still fast. It is a bolt-on type neck made of maple and has a rosewood fretboard, with pretty mother of pearl split trapezoid inlays (which look much better then the Gibson type inlays imo). The Guitar body is made of alder and is nicely beveled which is unique to the X model of Ravelles and adds a bit of comfort and compliments the overall look of the guitar. The finish on my guitar is dark metallic grey the head stock has matching finish as well. For hardware it has a Tune-O-Matic type bridge with string-thru body, Grover tuners, and two high output Fernandes humbuckers. Controls are simple, 1 volume and 1 tone knob, and a 3-way toggle switch.