Price paid: $ 450
Purchased from: Used (through Craigslist)
Sound — 10
Best sounding axe I've ever heard. The EMG-HZs are the best pickups I've heard so far in person.(I've only heard stock pickups, no DiMarzios, Duncans, or real EMGs yet)Thanks to the the neckthrough design and mahogany body, the tone that comes out of this thing is a grinding thrashing in-your-face type of tone. This was BORN for my style, Rhythm Thrash Metal. I played this through a tube halfstack with a Marshall 4X12, and wow did this scream.
Overall Impression — 9
I play Rhythm Thrash Metal, and this axe was BORN for it. The tone and feel just backs it up. I've been playing for two years and this was my dream axe for quite a while, so I'm still in doubt that I actually own this and got it for so little ($450 USD, like new with hardshell). Before buying it, I wish I would've heard a few more Thrash songs on it, as I still don't have an amp. Doesn't matter, this still sounds great even acoustically! If this was stolen or lost, I would try my best to find the scumbag Who stole it and tear off his face. This is the best axe I've played. I've played all of these axes: Squier 2005 Affinity Strat, Jackson JS30, Jackson DKMGT, Ibanez RG321, Ibanez SZ720, ESP F-50, Ibanez GRX20, B.C. Rich Bronze Warlock, MIM Strat, '92 MIA Strat, Schecter Omen 6. And this is the best one. What I love the most about it is the entire package. Now I know why this is worth $1,000 USD.
Reliability & Durability — 8
Considering how thin the body is (it's like a half of an inch thick), I think you'd have to watch how crazy you get when you're playing live. The strap buttons are over-sized and I've played this standing up, I would rely on this axe. The finish is thick. The two little dings have only a tiny bit of finish coming off.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
I bought this used locally via Craigslist, so it was already setup and had a few nicks and dings that are only cosmetic. The finish will be a bitch to keep clean since it's satin black, but it's worth the looks. Playingwise, it's like butter, literally. There is no delay in thrashing out, and the neck has just the right thickness for my tastes. Not too thick, not too thin. I've felt Wizard IIs, and I think those now suck compared to this neck.
Features — 8
MIJ, 24 frets, scalloped neck joint, neck-through design with string-through body. Mahogany body, mahogany neck, ebony fretbaord. Die-cast turners, passive EMG-Hzs, and the lightest axe you will ever play. Satin black finish, looks gorgeous in person. Tune-o-matic bridge with string-through body.