USA Select DK1 review by Jackson

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.9 (15 votes)
Jackson: USA Select DK1
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Price paid: £ 1500

Purchased from: dawsons

Sound — 8
The EMG pick ups are a little bit noisy when set to 100% volume, so I drop it to about 90%. The guitar has no tone at all with distortion but handles high gain from my Line 6 spider 3 150w amp pretty well. The clean sounds are pretty warm and colourful and the sustain is pretty good.

Overall Impression — 9
If you want a guitar for heavy metal, this is probably the best bet. Minimal noise and a super fast neck and set up. I knew when buying it that it was designed for metal, but it is literally unplayable for any other style (unless you wanna mess around with the bridge set up). If you want it for any other style you should get the new '08 Gibson Les Paul Standard. it's cheaper and far more versatile.

Reliability & Durability — 9
The Floyd Rose trem can certainly take some abuse, and the guitar seems pretty sturdy. The tone controls are wonky though, but I can Live with that. it's light and very playable stood up or sat down. it's very comfortable to play, probably the most playable guitar I have ever played. It won't be falling apart anytime soon.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
It comes with gauge 9 strings and low action, so it's set up for heavy metal. If you want to start playing other styles, you should probably raise the bridge (a lot) and put some 10s on it. The Floyd Rose trem moves drastically every time you bend a string, putting them all out of tune during the bend. so unison bends and any bend above 1/2 step are out of the question.

Features — 9
24 frets, Floyd Rose trem double lock (this thing stays in tune forever), volume and tone control and 3 way pick up selector. Active EMGs in neck and bridge, powered by a 9v battery at the back. The guitar simply doesn't work without it. Bolt on neck, very playable from the 1st fret to the 24th. Case included too.

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