DK2 Dinky review by Jackson

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.7 (185 votes)
Jackson: DK2 Dinky

Price paid: $ 526

Purchased from:

Sound — 8
I wanted an all purpose rock guitar that could play anything from alternative to most metal. I don't like Duncan pickups so I swapped them for a Dimarzio PAF Pro (neck) and Tone Zone (bridge. I also replaced the 3 way blade Switch with a Stew Mac Mega 5 way Switch which gives me bridge both coils/ bridge single coil/ bridge & neck single coils/ neck single coil/ and neck both coils. I love this set up. The Switch gives me tons of variety and the Tone Zone is a killer pickup IMO - especially on an alder body where many pickups (like the JB) sound too thin. Plus, the TZ has more gain than the JB so it's better suited for rock. I play through a DigiTech 2120, Mesa Boogie 50/50 power amp into a Marshall 2 speaker cab. My 8 rating is an average of the guitar before and after my modifications.

Overall Impression — 9
I bought this guitar because I wanted a dependable, all purpose fixed bridge, rock guitar. After the modifications & proper set up, it's my favorite guitar along with my Wolfgang (which costs 3x as much). I would definitely buy it again (& make the same modifications) if it was stolen. In fact, if I start playing a lot of gigs, I may buy another anyway. This isn't the perfect guitar for me, but after playing over 10 years and owning at least 10 different mid & high end guitars (incl. Gibson LP, PRS, Ibanez Prestige RG, USA Jackson, ESP), my perfect guitar will have to be a custom build. Overall, I give this guitar a 9 despite some of the quality issues. For me price matters. You can't compare $500-$600 guitar to $2000-$3000 guitar. This guitar screams good value. With a little better quality control & factory set up, it's a 10/10 steal out of the box. Keep in mind that even though I don't like Duncan pickups, this is the only guitar I know of for under $600 (street) that features name brand pickups. The compound fretboard radius is another high end feature and offer great playability. FYI, I paid $526 plus case at which was the cheapest price I found by $40-$50. The price includes a free set up, but I didn't want to wait do my own set ups anyway. It's the second guitar (the first, an ESP NT-II arrived in flawless condition), I've bought from Power Alley and definitely recommend you check out their prices before buying.

Reliability & Durability — 10
This is a solid guitar, and I expect it to last a long time. The black hardware finish is susceptible to coming off, but no more than any other guitar. Strap buttons are nice and big, no need for locking straps unless you plan to swing it around in circles. I would never gig without a back up, but you could with this.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Factory set up was the usual, high action, poor intonation. You should always re-setup a new guitar. One of the tuning peg nuts was loose as was the nut for the volume knob. From what I know, that's not too unusual for low & mid level guitars, but disappointing anyway. I also had to flip the D, A & E saddles around (they come reversed for some stupid reason) to get proper intonation. After the guitar was set up properly, I got very low action with almost no buzz (@ 17th 3/63 high E & just under 4/64 low E). After my luthier installed an Earvana OEM nut, intonation was dead on for almost every fret. FWIW, the Earvana nut really does works, but do not try to install the OEM version yourself! One of the best things about this guitar is the neck. It has a slick satin finish and is very fast, but the profile (i.e. back of the neck) isn't super flat like the Ibanez Wizard neck. It's almost perfect for me, just a tad thin, but I like somewhat thicker necks anyway. Other then the loose bolts, overall fit and finish was very good. However, this was my second one. I sent the first one back because there were chips on the neck binding and the neck itself sat too high in the pocket. Again, rating is an average of before and after mod/final set up. It does not include the first DK2T I returned.

Features — 10
This the Jackson "Pro Series" DK2T made in Japan. It features an alder body, string thru tune-o-matic (fixed) bridge, bolt-on maple neck w/rosewood fretboard and 24jumbo frets, 14-16 compound radius, two humbuckers (Seymour Duncan Jazz & JB), 3 position Switch, and one volume and one tone knob. It gets a 10 for having a compound radius and name brand pickups (not OEM or "designed by") at this price.

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    i have one of these in crimson swirl ( very nice ) and i love this guitar! its thin neck its great for playing fast. its easy worth the money.