Ultra Swede review by Hagstrom

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.9 (116 votes)
Hagstrom: Ultra Swede

Price paid: € 330

Purchased from: Thomann

Sound — 9
The sound is really good on this one. Very versatile with the coil tap. I play mostly metal and rock and a little bit of blues and it does the job great. The volume knob is a bit "all or nothing". Humbuckers sounds nice and warm with quite a punch and when you split you get a crisp single-coil sound. Great sustain.

Overall Impression — 9
I have been playing for almost 10 years and I have owned quite a few guitars and this one is my favourite so far. I love the fact that its a little bit smaller in size which suits me perfect. The versatility is great and I would for sure buy a new one if lost/stolen. Again, only critique is that the black burst was almost invisible.

Reliability & Durability — 9
Still very new so its hard to tell but everything feels solid so far. The truss rod should keep the neck stable and so far it stays in tune. Strap buttons seems solid. I would not go on a gig without backup but not because I don't trust this guitar. You should always have a backup!

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The setup was close to perfect. Perfectly intonated and in tune even! Volume knob was lose but easily fixed. Beautiful pearl edges and nice inlays. No buzzing strings or anything. I might consider lowering the strings a bit and maybe adjust pickup height.

Features — 8
Basswood body with resinator fretboard. Long travel tune-o-matic bridge which makes it stay in tune. 3-way toggle and a coil switch. One volume- and one tone knob. This one has the cosmic black burst which unfortunately didn't look as expected. Almost totally black. The burst effect hardly shows at all. Nice pearl around the edges though.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    A few months ago I picked up an Ultra Swede Select SL-2 for just $240 at a local pawn shop.The guitar was filthy and had a string missing and I don't believe that they realized what an incredible guitar they had.I took her home and cleaned her up and brought back the finish of the beautiful quilted maple top and the incredibly difficult to cut and apply flame maple binding.I have 2 vintage Hagstroms so I knew already that they were top quality guitars but I wasn't prepared for the incredible quality of this guitar.Everything about it was just plain exceptional, the finish and build quality was flawless,the playabilty of the super thin neck is so comfortable that other guitar makers could learn a thing or two from studying the Hagstrom necks.The sound is just unbelieveable,she just blows away my Les Paul and with the coil tap you can get a tone much like the sparkle that you get from a P-90 rather than the expected Fender type single coil tone.If you ever have the opportunity to try out one of these beauties,take it because these little gems out perform guitars that cost more than double their price.
    you can pay thousands more for a name stamp that says Fender or Gibson...or you can just pick up one of these great guitars and get quality, sound and play-ability for under a grand... this has to to one of the [b]BEST guitars I have ever owned...and I've owned those brand name guitars... you can get Fender and Gibson sounds with Paul Reed Smith feel... I was truly shocked at how great these guitars are... I was a Gibson guy and never thought i would ever play anything else...this is my go to guitar now..
    Hey guys, i need little help here. I have played on my acustic guitar for about 2 years now, and decided to buy a new el guitar. I like to play almost everything out there(maybe exept for blues). Thats the reason I need a guitar that suits many styles. Is this a guitar I should consider buying? The only problem i am dealing with now, is that I wonder if a FENDER Squier Classic Vibe 50s will be better ? I was also thinking about a Fender standard stratocaster but i really don't know... I would appreciate any help, thanks
    I just sold a epi les paul plus top and was thinking about getting a ultra swede but i play mostly standing up is this guitar neck heavy?