Price paid: A$ 900
Purchased from: Guitar World
Sound — 8
I like to play an eclectic mix of music, from heavy rock to 50's rock, country and Jazz style rhythms. I'm currently running it through an old Fender Twin Reverb 70's something, sounds sweet, I like running a little cheap swamp Od1 set to high tone and a little o/d witht the gain mid range. The p/ups are humbuckers, they really warm the tones and it has that traditional hollow resonance of the early Gretsch's you hear in Brian Zetser play.
Overall Impression — 9
This is a great guitar, sexy like a woman, easy to play neck, reliable electronics, 3 way toogle, that really gives a variety of tones. I would have to replace it if it were stolen, it has allowed me to develop my playing style by being so versatile. I have a 90's SG Gibson and I like its neck for access to the top 6-8 frets, the HJ600 frets are harder to access because of where the neck meets the body, your thumb hits a speed-hump, you have to realy roll the wrist to get that access.
Reliability & Durability — 9
Relaible, yes, I replaced the strap buttons with locking ones. If you drop this solid mumma, she might ding badly. Although the tough exterior finish is thick and luxurious, everything seems as it should for a working guitar. I'd also wished I had gone for a model with a Tremar set to it. I really like hte idea of bending with a tremar, but I don't know how the Hagstrom ones compare, although I've heard they are as good as bigsby's but that Bigsby's are crap, so go figure.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
Action is very low for an archtop, it has a fast neck with playability, and I have ham hocks for hands, so it makes life easy for a big fella. I had it setup at the shop on purchase, so it has had one reservice to get the action lowered a little more and I have no fret buzzes and it has never gone out of tune once since I bought it. I case it, I rack it, I leaveit leaning against the couch, and it never goes out of tune, and I have 2 kids bolting around the building. One flaw, I noticed in the construction was the excess glue inside the body, the supporting posts require sopme glue to place them and the excess was not wiped clean in some, I made sure mine was tidy before I took it from the shop. The whole unit is a dream to play I love it.
Features — 8
Body: Ply Spruce Top, Contoured Ply Flamed Maple Back and Sides Neck: Canadian Hard Maple, set Fingerboard: Resinator Wood with Hagstrom Pearl Block Position Marks Truss Rod: H-Expander Tuning Keys: Hagstrom 18:1 Die Cast Scale Length: 24,75 / 628 mm Pickups: 2 x Hagstrom HJ-50 Pickup Selector: 3-Way Toggle Bridge: Ebony Jimmy Bridge w/ Hagstrom Trapeze Tail Piece, Controls: 2 x Volume / 2 x Tone