Price paid: $ 1100
Purchased from: Birmingham, AL Guitar Center
Sound — 9
It allows me to play all kinds of rock which is just perfect for me. On that guitar I can play stuff that I like back in the day like Led Zeppelin and '80s bands like Skid Row and stuff like punk like NOFX and Green Day to hardcore bands like As I Lay Dying and Throwdown. As far as my other setup goes I run the Explorer through a Roland 15-watt (small but loud as I need) and a Boss Metal Zone pedal.
Overall Impression — 10
I play in rock and this is a great match for my guitar. I have been playing about 3 years and I own my Roland 15-watt amp and a Boss Metal Zone pedal and a Jackson Soloist SL3. I couldn't have chosen a better guitar.
Reliability & Durability — 8
You can, of course, definately use this guitar live and it will definately last.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
Everything set-up wise is great. The pickups were adjusted right and everything. The only thing is at Guitar Center, you can pick up just about any guitar there and plug it in and play it. The Explorer that was shipped to me had to chips off of it (about small finger nail size) but as soon as I notified them they were great about giving me a brand new one. That might sound greedy but if I pay 1100 for it I want it to be perfect you know.
Features — 10
This thing is so sweet. My Explorer was made in 2005 in the US with 26 frets, maple fretboard, and a solid-top. It is black with a white pick guard. My pickups are what come with all Gibson Explorers and that is the 496R-500T ceramic humbuckers which I left in there instead of adding different ones because the sound is chunky and just perfect for all kinds of rock. It feels great but is not meant to be played sitting down. It is a stand-up guitar and is just awesome.