Price paid: $ 600
Purchased from: Musicians Friend
Sound — 9
If you like metal then this is the guitar for you. Mahogany body + ebony fretboard + EMG 81 = very bright attack. Harmonics are excellent and almost effortless. This guitar is a true crunch machine. Just listen to Fear factory and this is what you can expect from this guitar.
Overall Impression — 7
This guitar is a bad @$$ metal machine. The tone makes it seem like it was forged in the darkest recess of the bowels of metal hell! I played this through a Mesa Triple rec, a 5150 series one combo and a Spider 3. If it were not for the horrible fret buzz this guitar would have shred! I sent mine back to MF and will definitely get another from a local shop were I can actually play before I purchase (advice to any guitarist). Final thought, this guitar is good for a Japanese made guitar but if you are looking for a true Jackson, save your pennies and go for a USA made soloist. Granted, I was initially attracted to the signature model hook but stick with USA made guitars!
Reliability & Durability — 8
From my limited account, it seems pretty reliable however, I cannot give it an unbiased throrough rating because I only had the guitar in my possession for two weeks in which the majority of the time it was in the shop trying to get the neck adjusted. I think it would have benn better if they gave it a set neck and I couldnt imagine the amount of sustain this thing would have put out.
Action, Fit & Finish — 4
OK here comes the negative part of my review. For the most part, the finish, bridge and everything was good except the setup / truss rod. To it's credit, musicians friend did a terrible job of packing this guitar and I am surprised it actually arrived in tact. Needless to say, there was major fret buzz across the board. The truss rod was way too tight which actually warped the neck. I took this guitar to 2 different shops to get the neck adjusted and to my chagrin, no one could get it right. Bottom line, don't buy from mail order Musicans friend without getting a hardshell case andinsist it is packaged well.
Features — 9
I recently picked up a COW signature dinky from Musicans Friend. First and foremost, it is a decent guitar for a non USA (Japanese). The basic setup for this guitar is string through, mahogany carved body with ebony over maple fretboard. The coolest feature is the blackness of this guitar (obviously I had the black one) and the reverse headstock. It comes loaded with a single EMG-81 with is pure rawness. Since this is a single configuration, one pickup guitar with that hot EMG in it, your pretty much stuck with playing only metal and rock with it. No clean tones at all, even with volume backed off.