Price paid: $ 252
Sound — 7
Ok sound, if I would rate it now with my 8 year experience, I would say it's really bad. The powersound pickups are muddy and make a lot of noise. the more you play it they worst they start to sound. I would suggest getting other pickups for this guitar but then again, the new pickups (good ones) would cost you more than this guitar. But if you look at this guitar as a beginners guitar, it is pretty solid sounding. Again, keep in mind the price. I would give it an 7 based on my first 2 years with this thing. The bridge pickup has been broke for almost 2 years now, but from what I remember it was pretty decent wehn played with distrotion. I have used this mostly for Metallica sounds and it was great for that. The neck pickup makes a nice warm sound, can be used for solo's and some bluesy stuff maybe. The single coil pickup is good if you want a Strat sound, sounds bright but lacks sustain and will buzz a lot.
Overall Impression — 7
Overall, pretty good guitar for it's price. Don't pay more than $200 for it. And if you are looking for your 2nd guitar and have some experience. Maybe save up a few months and go for a RG prestige series if you like these guitars, they offer much more quality. Or maybe look for an LTD guitar (cheap ESP guitars), they are also pretty good for metal (especially Metallica) and are not very expensive.
Reliability & Durability — 7
I would say this is a perfect guitar if you are just starting out and want to play metal, good for gigs but when you and your band start to get better, maybe you wanna upgrade because I would not rely on this guitar too much when performing live. It also takes a day or 2 before your strings stay in tune after you put new strings on it. Even with the toplock on it, the strings need some stretching and the bridge has to find the right position.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Factory settings were perfect. However, when you are new to guitars and you start to mess around with a Floyd Rose you will end up in deep shit. If you don't know much about tuning and the guitar goes out of tune. you have to go to a guitar shop because it can get really complicated. Especially if you do not have the right tools for the job. The tremelo has come off after 2 years. I used it a lot for solos and it is not build for heavy use. I wanted to play some hammet style solo's and did what hammett does on stage with his guitars, like dive bombing and such. Well if you do it, do it with great care because it will break if you psuh it to the max too many times. One other thing I need to mention is the hardware gets rusty pretty fast, but then again, looking at it's price you can't have it all for just $200.
Features — 9
This was my second guitar I bought, I did not know anything about guitars at the time and just went for a cool looking guitar that wasn't too expensive. It was made in korea in 2001, I think I also bought it that year. It has 24 jumbo frets and a wizzard II neck with rosewood. It comes with a Floyd Rose Tremelo wich is great but not for beginners I would say. It has nice sharktooth inlays on the neck wich make it look mean. For looks and playability I have to give this one a 9 for the price range of this guitar. Even though the pickups suck (powersound) for a beginners guitar in this price range it has a lot of cool features.