JDR-94 Review

manufacturer: Jackson date: 06/08/2015 category: Electric Guitars
Jackson: JDR-94
The JDR-94 is a solid guitar and a real workhorse. It has never let me down since it has a tremolo I would have a back up but only for that reason.
 Features: 9
 Sound: 8
 Action, Fit & Finish: 9
 Reliability & Durability: 8
 Overall Impression: 9
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
review (1) pictures (1) user comments vote for this gear:
overall: 8.6
JDR-94 Reviewed by: thebat, on june 08, 2015
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: A$ 500

Purchased from: Pawnbrokers

Features: Made in 1994 in Japan in the Chushin Gakki factory.

  • Binding None
  • Body Construction Double cutaway
  • Body Shape Soloist
  • Body Type Solid Body
  • Body Wood Basswood
  • Bridge Floyd Rose Jt-500 double locking
  • Bridge Pickup Type Humbucker
  • Controls 1Tone
  • Controls 1 Volume
  • Fingerboard Material Rosewood
  • Finish Gloss
  • Fret Size Jumbo
  • Fingerboard Inlays Offset Dots
  • Hardware Black
  • Middle Pickup Type Single Coil
  • Neck Joint Bolt-on
  • Neck Pickup Type Humbucker
  • Neck Shape Series Standard
  • Neck Wood Maple
  • Number of Frets 24
  • Number of Pickups 3
  • Number of Strings 6
  • Nut Width 1.6875" (1-11/16")
  • Pickup Switch Type 5-Position Blade
  • Scale Length 25-1/2"
  • Tuners Die-cast
Custom Features: J-65 pickups in bridge and neck position. J-130 in middle. I replaced the neck and Bridge pick ups with DiMarzio super distortion pickups. Weight 7 lbs. No accessories. // 9

Sound: I play traditional metal like Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden. Along with a lot of shred, neoclassical Greg Howe, Paul Gilbert and thrash: Testament, HeXen, also technical death metal: Dying Fetus, Death - I have this guitar tuned to D so usually play Death, Paul Gilbert and some Gus G on it plus any other band I listen to that has a song tuned to D. I put 2 DiMarzio Super Distortion pickups in it I got cheap. The original pickups were not bad by any means. I left the single coil as is if I want a real clean sound. I use a Carvin XV212 old valve amp with no effects. Just the reverb of the amp and hi lead channel for gain. Since it is tuned to D the guitar has a very deep sound and the super distortion pick ups suit it well. It is great to play along to albums like Death's "Symbolic" ad the like. It is a very solid sound. There is variety with this guitar since you have 2 humbuckers and a single coil. If you need super clean you have it with the single coil and if you want heavy grit you have the humbuckers. I like a humbucker in the bridge for some solos. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: I bought this 2nd hand and went got a set up for it so it was set up in D tuning. However when I did get it the set up was good, It is easy to adjust the tremolo so you have a nice low action and good pull back. I think this tremolo is fine and I have read where some people don't like it, personal preference is what it is all about. As someone else said about this tremolo you can get incredible whammy bar flutters from it where you flick the bar with your hand and get that flutter sound that Steve Vai does sometimes I read where someone said this is the thinnest neck that Jackson every produced and it is super thin, much thinner than a DK2 it would be as thin if not thinner than a Charvel 650XL. This guitar is built for metal playing and you get it with a really nice super fast neck. There is great upper fret access with a nice tapered neck heal joint so not any hindrance at all. Good deep cut away on the lower horn and a nice scoop out of the lower horn for even easier access when going for the 24th fret.

This guitar for me plays like a dream, just no resistance in any area at all, nice and light comfortable to play both sitting down and standing up. Some people like reverse headstocks myself included and this adds to the whole metal look and feel of the instrument. I have had this guitar since 1996 so it is over 10 years old, Just recently I had the volume knob seize up on me, a spray with some WD40 fixed it up. I payed a lot back in the day for this guitar 500 with a trade which I don't remember unless it was this old la grange I had. I am glad I have it as it is something I won't part with. The tremolo stays in tune fine no matter the abuse you give it. // 9

Reliability & Durability: The JDR-94 is a solid guitar and a real workhorse, from memory I think I learnt the whole Death "Symbolic" album and payed this guitar relentlessly. It has never let me down since it has a tremolo I would have a back up but only for that reason. The paintwork on this guitar barely has a mark on it and it has been used a lot. The strap buttons are solid on this and I only recently put strap locks on it. If you like thin neck 24 fret, tremolo equipped guitars this is for you. I know they are long out of production but you do see them come up for sale every so often and they are worth every cent you will pay for one. The neck is a pleasure to play on, it is so easy to pick it up and learn a song almost instantly on it there are no physical barriers with it whatsoever. // 8

Overall Impression: The JDR 94 has everything I want on a guitar, thin neck easy upper fret access, 2 humbuckers, it is light it weighs 7 lbs, so it wont wear you down when playing live. It suits metal and shred perfectly you can wail away til your heart's content the Floyd offers huge squalling pull backs ala Dimebag Darryl, Steve Vai and massive divebombs like Hendrix, I would replace this as it is one iof the most playable guitars I own. I put it along side my Jackson PC3, Charvel 650 XL and BC Rich Ironbird NJ Series. I have a Kramer Assault 220 fixed bridge, set neck and the fretboard on that guitar is quite close to the JDR 94 even if some people might take offense the comparison, I also have a HM Strat and a Heartfield Talon, a Godin G4000, Kramer Focus 6000, Charvel Model 4, Peavey Tracer, Jackson DK2 and a Samick.

For me there is nothing to hate about this guitar except maybe the price I paid for it compared to what you can get them for now. I have been playing for over 20 years and sometimes I forget how good this guitar is. It sits in my rack with the other and I am glad I have become reacquainted with such a well built guitar. It may be quite a while before it gets put back on the rack as it is so inspirational to play. // 9

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