Price paid: A$ 750
Sound — 10
I play mostly mainstream, modern rock/metal, stuff like RATM, Metallica, Blink 182, Foo Fighters and everything in between. I find that this guitar works very well for the heavier stuff compared to my other gat (Ibanez SC420). I am currently running it through the Zakk Wylde Micro Stack (Marshall MG15 mszw) (Eat your heart out guy above me :-P) through which it sounds fantastic, going from Black Label Society to AC/DC in a heart beat. Not to noisy, however any minor background fuzz I get seems to come more from the amp than the guitar as it is absolutely silent through my brothers Line 6 Spider III 75w.
Overall Impression — 10
I find this guitar works well with my style of play. Having played pretty casually for about 5 years, I'm no expert. I haven't studied music at all, no lessons, nothing. Completely self taught. If it were lost or stolen, I would probably shop around but probably still end up getting a new one of these. I can quite comfortably use this guitar for any genre except classical (acoustic guitars tend to work better for this one :-P) as long as I am not pedantic about it, which being a student on a budget is a very appealing feature. I would recommend this guitar to anyone looking for a Les Paul-esque guitar and doesn't have the money to actually get a Gibson. However, given the choice between a free Ibanez ART300 and a Gibson Les Paul, I'd take the Les Paul, sell it and get like 3 of these. Or one and I nice Marshall, whatever I'm in the mood for.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I've gigged with this guitar, never with a back up, used it for band practice several times a week and spent many hours practicing a week at home for near two years now. There has never been a problem with it. Only requires tuning once a week ish. Finish still looks like new (much better in person, internet photos don't do it justice). I bought a Les Paul hard case for it, help keep it protected on planes/in vans etc and even though it isn't a perfect fit, it's done well so far.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
I got it direct from the manufacturer and needed urgent attention. The factory set-up did not cut the mustard with me. Action was terrible, truss-rod was far to tight and the intonation was terrible. I am no guitar doctor but $45 and one store set-up later, it played like a dream. I was able to shred on it almost as well as I can with my SC420. Also the strap buttons seem awfully flimsy and I highly recommend strap locks. Aside from these minor inconveniences, this guitar as fantastic and well worth the time.
Features — 10
I have the 2008 model, made in China. 22 medium frets on a big fat set-in neck. Single cut mahogany body (the only ones I get) with a scalloped maple top. Gibraltar III bridge and tail piece, LoZ-1 active pick ups, powered by dial AA batteries. Individual volume controls for each pick-up and one tone control coupled with a 3-way selector allow for a wide variety of tones. Didn't come with any accessories.