SG Special Faded review by Gibson

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.2 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.4 (498 votes)
Gibson: SG Special Faded

Price paid: $ 400

Purchased from: Private Sale

Sound — 9
The Bridge pickup has a good amount of output with a great midrange. Just the right amount of gain for me, but maybe not enough to satisfy the metal addicts. The neck pick up does not have a good jazzy clean tone like I like from the neck position, but I really don't play clean that often. Both pickups are made to rock with your distortion on. The pair won't do everything great but will do anything well. It suits my style of play (punk, hard rock, etc). So I give it a nine.

Overall Impression — 8
This guitar suits my style of play perfectly. I have been playing for eight years and own/have owned a considerable amount of other guitars. Probably 11 or 12 ranging from crap to great. If this were lost or stolen I probably wouldn't seek out another simply because I have my G400 which is only second best in tone to this thing. I love the sound and the playability, but the feel of the finish is up in the air. 8 overall.

Reliability & Durability — 8
The guitar would definitely withstand live playing. Stays in tune well. Strap buttons are solid. Hardware is excellent. Some say the tuners are bad, but I say almost any tuners can be made do with if you put the strings on the posts correctly and make sure your nut slots are filed properly. I would never gig without a backup, and I have heard that the neck joints on these things aren't the strongest but I don't plan on letting the guitar hit the floor. The finish doesn't appear to want to stay on it. When I got it it was faded out to the color of the wood in places. I like how it looks but to each their own. I give an eight.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
I got the guitar second hand, but the kid said he didn't make any adjustments to it. I don't really believe him so this is my impression. The guitar is easy to set up and get playing according to my liking. All I did was raise the tail piece so the strings would clear the backside of the Bridge and then adjusted the Bridge to my liking in terms of height. I set the intonation and tightened up the tuners and everything was fine from there. Bends are easy. Fret wire ends are filed nicely. The only thing I am still not sure about is the finish. The neck sometimes feels great to me and other times feels second best to the satin finish on my G400. I would give this section an eight. Body was all beat up when I bought it but I'm sure it was beautiful new.

Features — 8
My guitar was made in 2006 in the USA. It has 24 frets on a rosewood fretboard laid atop a nice round mahogany neck. Body is mahogany also. The finish is Satin. Double cutaway makes access to the upper frets a breeze. Tune-o-matic Bridge is wider than on Epiphone models allowing for more accurate intonation. 490T and 490R pickups each with their own volume and tone control. Everything you would expect from an SG. But the finish is a love or hate. I still don't know if I love or hate it.

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