Price paid: $ 686.25
Purchased from: privately
Sound — 6
I use the guitar with a Fender 112 amp, and to be honest - I was a little dissapointed. You really have to work with the guitar to get a decent sound, as it seems that the low frequencies just can not punch through. The single humbucker means that the guitar is not hugely versatile, although there is a distinctly bright and crunchy sound. This is very much a lead guitarists axe, because its piercing sound can suit distorted solos pretty well. This is my backup guitar on stage, other-wise I use an Epiphone G-400 korina due to its fuller sound.
Overall Impression — 6
I play a lot of blues and rock, and this guitar doesn't seem to fit the requirements. It's just too trebley. The Fender amp tries to rectify the problem, but dont expect a lot. I chose the guitar mainly of its looks, which was foolish looking back. If it were stolen, I will probably look at the other Gordon Smith range and look for something with more grunt. As I said earlier, this is a lead guitarists guitar more than rhythm. The single pickup is brilliant for solos, but not much else. I use several effects such as wah, flanger and phasing as well as the standard distortion. The guitar compliments these pretty well, but on straight distortion or clean, it begins to struggle. I advise looking at other Gordon Smith guitars for versatility, although they are a british company so players in america or around the world may have difficulty in finding them. Check their website.
Reliability & Durability — 8
The guitar will certainly last on stage, although the sound is dissapointing. The finish is good enough, provided you take very good care of it. The strap buttons are pretty good and the guitar is dependable. My only real concern is the neck. If it were dropped, it is very likely the neck will snap. The screws seem a little too small, but it should last a while.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
As for the looks of the machine, it was hand crafted here in england, and it looks very nice. The action was a little high, and the saddle was a bit loose but it was professionally set up soon after. The natural finish is great, although the dot inlays seem a bit standard. The hardware was well set-up and this should last for a good while.
Features — 8
This guitar features a slim, single cutaway body and mahogony neck, with a rosewood fingerboard and dot inlays with 22 frets. It has a natural, satin finish. The electrics are 1 GSG standard humbucker, with a single tone and volume control. You can choose a variety of added extras for extra dosh, such as a tune-o-matic bridge, and a twelve string version.