Purchased from: Hoffmans Music (Local Music Store)
Sound — 10
For me personally, I'm a metal head. Wheather it being playing death, black, melodeath, or metalcore. It suits my playing needs very well and wow, the tone I can pull of is excellent. Not to mention it just looks metal not a big positive because I couldl really care less, but still it adds to some effect I beleive. From what I've heard it's not to noisy and has a rich sound. The guitar itself I beleive plays best mixed with heavy distortion and high gain. But when I play some progressions on a clean setting it doesn't sound bad at all. I'd have to say this is the best guitar I've ever done whammy harmonics on, I can literally hold that scream for 7 seconds, which I'd really never need to do, but it's a nice feature.
Overall Impression — 10
As I said previously, I play metal. I strongly beleive this is a great match for me. I don't' plan on buying another guitar for a long time so I felt that I had to pick something that I wouldn't get bored of and had a bunch of versatility. And the Xiphos, I felt, was the one for me. If I lost it I would definatly get another one, I just like this guitar so much and the fretboard is quick. One of my favorite features of this guitar is the whammy harmonics for one, but what I really like is the sweeping ability. This is partly because I love the Ibanez necks and with this guitar you can easily reach the upper frets and sweep your mind out and solo like there is no tomorrow. Overall, this is my favorite guitar out of my collection and if you're into metal this is a great guitar for a great price.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Well, I can't really say about the reliability and durability of thsi guitar being I havn't owned it quite long enought to say. The hardware seems like it will last and if it doesn't I wouldn't mind paying for this sweet thing to get repaired. From what I can tell the strap buttons are solid unlike my other guitar which I'm constantly trying to catch as it falls to the ground. As far as if I can depend on it I would definatly gig with it. However, I always bring a backup just in case, plus the songs I play come are in a few different tunings so I need a backup. I'm really hoping the finsih will last long into the future, mostly because this is a pretty big selling point of the guitar and a lot of hardwork was put into the making of it.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The guitar was set up very nicely at the factory, the action was a tad to high to what I like, but it's not a big deal to me. From what I can tell the pickups were adjusted properly, but I can't really say either way because I havn't had the chance to mess around with them yet. Overall it was set up very nicely from the store.
Features — 9
Well, I recently purchased the Xiphos and I am thrilled about it's performance. It has been released either early 2007 or late 2006 I beleive. There is a total of 24 frets and a 25.5" scale which is a very nice feature in my opinion. The guitar itself is made out of maple/walnut 5-ply neck. The finish is one of the more noticable features. It reminds me of almost pearlalescent paint that you see on cars. Which, basically changes colors depending on the light and angle you're seeing the guitar at. The bridge is an Edge III tremolo. The electronics come stock as passive but I plan to soon changes my pickups too active EMG's but that is just my personal preference. I think the DiMarzio Pickups sound great actually though. The Controls that are given is a Volume knob, tone knob, and a 3 way selector. The Tuner is a locking nut, which at times can be a hassel, but I've never gotten out of tune with it yet.