Price paid: $ 450
Purchased from: Sam Ash
Sound — 6
I play a lot of rock and metal. It works great for that. I do sort of regret buying this guitar, because even though it plays great, it doesn't get any other sounds besides just plain metal. If I was to buy a guitar now, I would probably pick an H,S,S Strat instead. But it still sounds great for rock and metal. The pickups work well together. I play it through a 50 watt Crate tube amp (it doesn't have the name on it, and i got it from my guitar teacher who forgot the name) with a Boss DS-1 Distortion pedal. If you aren't playing, it's gonna be quiet, but when you do play it, it's just like getting punched in the face. It's got a really full sound, and it's very warm.
Overall Impression — 9
This is a good match for rock and metal music. Very fast neck that's useful for shredding. I've been playing guitar for a while now, and I've had to fix many (I worked as a guitar repair-man). Out of all the ones that I've been exposed to and had the chance to play, this is the one that has given me the best sound so far. If it was stolen or lost, I would probably buy another guitar, but just because of the sound limitations that it brings me. The only thing I dislike about this guitar is the limitations that it's sound has. It's really just a metal guitar. I compared it to tons of other guitars, including ESPs and LTDs. This one had the best feeling neck and the most stable trem. I just wish it was an H,S,S or even better an H,S,H with a push/pull pot to Switch from humbucking to single coil.
Reliability & Durability — 10
This guitar can withstand anything. I can go days without tuning the guitar (and it actually stays in tune, it's not just because I'm lazy). The licensed Floyd Rose has lasted me 2 years. Of course I learned how to take care of them the hard way, I own two messed up Floyd Rose style bridges. This one, however, has proved it's worth. The strap buttons are decent, but they aren't locking like I'd like them to be. I would never use any guitar at any gig without a back up however, because that's just how I am, but I can safely say that the back up will probably just sit on the rack the whole time.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
From what I remember the factory did a nice job setting this one up. The action was a little high for my tastes and I lowered it a bit. All the routing and everything was perfect. The intonation is a little bit off, but pretty much all guitars with Floyd Rose set ups have that problem straight out of the factory. Things weren't to my spec (like the angle of the bridge when it floats, which I always tilt back a little bit), but that's just based on my personal preference. I picked it up christmas morning and it worked perfectly.
Features — 8
This guitar was made in Asia, although I can't say for sure where because I peeled of the sticker that specified that. I got it brand new in 2008, so I guess that's the year it was built. It's a maple neck with a fairly thin profile, and it's got a rosewood fingerboard with a compound radius (12"-16") and 24 jumbo frets. It's a basswood body with a solid top painted all black. It's a dinky Strat (a Strat with a thicker body and a slightly smaller size) equipped with a Jackson licensed Floyd Rose and two EMG-HZ (passive) humbucking pickups.