UM3 Review

manufacturer: Greg Bennett date: 01/20/2014 category: Electric Guitars
Greg Bennett: UM3
This guitar was purchased new in 10, and is made by Samick in their Indonesian factory. It features medium-jumbo frets, mahogany neck, alder body, maple top.
 Sound: 9.5
 Overall Impression: 9.5
 Reliability & Durability: 9.5
 Action, Fit & Finish: 9
 Features: 9.5
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (2) pictures (1) 21 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.6
UM3 Reviewed by: unregistered, on february 17, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 375

Purchased from: A Samick Authorized Dealer

Features: This guitar was purchased new in 10, and is made by Samick in their Indonesian factory. It features medium-jumbo frets, mahogany neck, alder body, maple top. It's finished in a high gloss poly. It's got two humbuckers (Duncan Design - which I'll swap when I decide what to install. Grover tuners. Wilkinson bridge (I think). Basically - this is a famous-maker clone of a PRS guitar. For being a cheap import guitar, This Guitar Has Quality Hardware And Electronics. Aside from the humbuckers, I won't swap anything else out on this guitar until it breaks - because everything works just fine. // 10

Sound: I like lots of blues, hard rock, and jazz. This guitar handles all three just fine. I'll probably purchase EMG pickups for this guitar. Not liking the pickups wouldn't deter me from purchasing this guitar - since I swap pickups out in half of my guitars anyway. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The neck is very straight, the action is very fast, the neck feels like a Gibson style neck, the top on this guitar is real maple - not a photo flame. The high gloss poly finish is beautiful, the frets play great. The binding is nicely done. I'm only giving this an eight - because fit and finish is not perfect. I had to tighten a few screws after I purchased it--could have been shipping, poor set up, someone in the store playing with the guitar, etc. Doesn't matter to me because 30 seconds and a screwdriver will fix it. The nut was cut well, the controls felt like high quality controls. // 8

Reliability & Durability: This guitar features a dual action truss rod! This means the neck will most likely be straight and playable for a lifetime - if the guitar is cared for. The hardware is solid enough to keep on the guitar. I'd gig with the guitar without a backup. The finish seems good enough to last, however, I'll do my best to abuse the guitar and see how long it takes to wear! (Beauty marks..) // 10

Overall Impression: Here's the deal. Greg Bennet guitars are mass produced guitars, that you can purchase real cheap if your dealer is willing to negotiate. They use decent wood, decent hardware, and have a manufacturing process that yields quality instruments. As with any mass-produced import with affordability in mind, you will find a higher percentage of units that may have slipped through with a few flaws--so I'd definitely want to purchase in person and not over the internet (unless you trust your dealer, and trust their inspection of the instrument.) Don't get me wrong - a real PRS would be a better choice if you can afford it. However, I just wanted a PRS style guitar minus the price (I'm more a Fender guy). What I love about Greg Bennet guitars is that they're cheap, and I can have a selection of guitars in my collection that I wouldn't typically purchase. Additionally, they're guitars that are playable, reliable, and - they're so cheap, that you can ride it like a bull in a china shop and not care. // 10

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overall: 9.2
UM3 Reviewed by: alanlatchley, on january 20, 2014
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: The first thing one notices is the high quality craftmanship that's gone into making this guitar. Lovely binding, mouth-watering maple top - it makes one wanna pick it up and never let it go! Grover tuners keep this baby in tune better than my Epiphone PRS Spotlight. The pickups made me suspicious - I've heard them before and they aren't high end but they seem to work in this guitar! May swap them for some Teslas though I know somebody who switched them for SDs and after a few weeks went back to the DDs... It's really a case of finding which pickups will work best in this guitar. // 9

Sound: Anything from Santana, blues, rock, indie, jazz it's perfect. Surprising considering the body type is kind of a thinner and lighter PRS/Les Paul. Definitely slightly thinner on the body than my Epiphone Spotlight. Currently using it through a Spectrasonics 611-G into a Seymour Duncan Distortion pedal then into a Focusrite PRO24 then into Reaper... It's not noisy at all... Excellent sustain too. Also sounds great with a Laney LC15R in the chain too. Even tried it with a Johnson J station - the distortion settings give that Santana sound straight off the bat. Not sure how it sounds with a Line Pod. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The shop set it up properly so not sure how well they come from the factory. No flaws though, once again, excellent workmanship. This has got a high quality feel throughout. The tuning up and down is excellent - in fact one of the best tuned guitars I've played. Up the fretboard and down it's a joy to hear the string be in tune with one another. Again, this may be down to the set up by the shop. The frets are well set too, nothing catches one's fingers or strings. Buzz is none existent, that's with a very low action too. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Seems like it will last forever. Had no issues in three years. Great hardware, pots are okay, pickup switch seems stable. Never had to adjust the truss rod. Never had to adjust the bridge though it seems to be pretty standard. The pots seem to be wired and soldered very neatly indeed, so once again no corners cut. I was looking to see if the pickups could be tapped but I think from what I can remember, I could only see two wires coming from each pickup - don't quote me on this, it was three years ago when I last looked! // 9

Overall Impression: Excellent value for money. It's a breeze to play across the fretboard as is holding and bending the strings due to the impressive sustain. Still not sure which pickups will work better but I am happy with the DDs so far. There is no coil tapping, not that it always works but this feature works well in my Epiphone Spotlight. Perhaps a brass nut may improve the sound more. The Grover tunes do hold the strings well even after bending so they are a great feature. The maple body is very enticing indeed! // 9

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