Purchased from: eBay
Sound — 10
This is not a mere guitar, this is an AXE. It is clearly design to be ripped on like a freakin chainsaw. I'm diehard metal and that's what this thing is designed for: speed and vicious, crushing noise. The body of this guitar will throw alot of people off, 'till they strap it on (that is if you strap it on properly, not designed for hanging down by your damn ankles like a slob). The top cut forms to your body very comfortably and the huge wing at the top has a purpose. If it's strapped on properly, and youre looking to shred in a technical way (tremelo picking and whatnot) you will find that your wrist sits perfectly on that wing and alows you to float your pick hand over the strings, perfect! Its light weight, very well ballanced and quite simply looks awesome. It has a natural tendency towards low end, meaty sound, but dialed in properly, has that sharp rasping crunch as well. The EMG combo (Zach Wilde uses the same setup) alows for change from more muted rhythm sound to pronounced soloing sound on the fly. The turbo nob makes a difference for sure. No stupid squeeling sounds when youre not touching it, for the most part. Right now all I have to play it through is a Roland Cube 15 practice amp (another piece of hardware I'm pleased with) and it still sounds awesome through it. I hooked it up to a 300W Peavee cabinet and it sounded glorious, and that was with built in effects. I'm dying to hear this thing throug a Crate or Marshall stack with professional grade distortion effects.
Overall Impression — 9
Again I play metal. I live for it. Everthing from power, to death, to thrash, to good old heavy metal. My specific influences: Sinister, Krabathor, Deicide, Obituary, Morbid Angel, Helloween, Manowar, Annihilator, Metal Church, Demons and Wizards, Falconer etc. Anything that is truely metal. Non of that new age BS (what I consider modern day hairband/cheesemetal) old school all the way MF! As such I did my research before selecting this axe. This is it gentlemen, certainly there're better guitars out there but for the $ can't beat it. I love how this thing looks, feels, and plays. Makes me want to play more often and for longer periods. Jackson makes some good stuff at a reaonable price, check em out. I've heard that even their cheap version (made in India) which I think goes for $300, is a lot of bang for your buck.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I don't doubt this guitars integrity. Once it's in tune, which like I said takes awile, it stays in tune. I'm diggin the fine tuners at the bridge.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
As stated this is a 2001 model. It sat in a shop for 5 years waiting for fate to bring it to my hands through eBay. It came to me in need of new strings and a setup so I can't comment on that. As far as quality, pretty damn good considering the Japs slapped it together. Looks solid, feels solid, plays solid. Quality woods and harware. The neck on this thing is strait, very thin and is flattended where your fret hand thumb sits again speed! The floyd rose takes a good amount of experiemtation to set up properly, look it up for details. Tends to be a pain in the ass, but once its set up right, the action is pretty tight. I'm at ~1.25mm at the 12th fret. Speed.
Features — 8
2001 model, first year they made em in a decade I think. This is the second to best of the Warriors, being second to the USA made WR1 which has neck-through-body. This ones a bolt on maple neck, rosewood fingerboard, alder body. 24 jumbos, easy to feel, good for speed. Double locking tremelo (floyd rose) which I'm still undecided on how much I like as apposed to the string through body. Neck and fingerbord are unfinished, no shiny crap on this one! Except for the body: high gloss gold/bronze with metal flake, black hardware, looks freakin wicked! 2 EMG pickups: passive 81 at the bridge and an active (9V pre amp) 85 at the neck, covered humbuckers. 3-way Switch, volume, tone, and turbo vol (for the active EMG).