Price paid: $ 732
Purchased from: Canterbury Music New Zealand
Sound — 8
Suits very well. I'm into lots of stuff, heavy rock and jazz and brit pop stuff as well. It all sounds great. I'm using an Ashton amp which isn't the best but it's pretty neat and ok priced too, about $250 US dollars. Very rich sound especially on the rythm pick up, harsh and cutting on the treble, it's got a pretty damn good sound. Basically this guitar can do almost as much as the Gibson. It's by far the best copy I've ever seen/heard/played. Very tidy price too.
Overall Impression — 8
Good for heavy rock, can be played for jazz, though maybe some nicer pick ups than the ones it come with would make it better. Any rock is fine for it. I've been playing the last 6 years now, own a Fender Tele (got given it, can't afford stuff like that!) and a cheapy Samick Strat (my first guitar!) and a Cyclone Strat (got given that by an old guy whoc didn't want it anymore, it's ok). If my Karina was lost or nicked I would be very keen to buy another one, just cos of the low price and good quality. I love the action most, it makes playing so much easier! I compare it to the Gibson models, it is always gonna lose obviously but it scores pretty well. In a blind test I'm sure that most people would think it was worth a couple of grand or so, I'm sure. I would like it to have Gibson humbuckers, then it would be almost perfect! Can still fork out and get those though.
Reliability & Durability — 8
Not played on it live yet but I reckon it'll be fine. I've accidentally knocked it about a bit (clumsy me!) and there are no marks or anything, I reckon it'd be fine to gig. I will use it next gig my band gets. Strap buttons are solid which is good for me as I tend to get a bit carried away in the riffs sometimes! I could depend on it alone in a gig I think, but inever do anyway, I usually like the comfort of having one of my other guitars ready as well. It should be ok though. Finish seems good, as I said I knocked it about a bit and there are no scratches or anything.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Action is very good, great ease of playing. Pick ups are great. Bridge routed well, no problems with this guitar at all. Technically it's very good. I prefer to play on my mates Gibson for obvious reason, but for a 10th of the price, this guitar is brilliant.
Features — 8
2004 model. Made in Korea or China I think not too sure. 22 frets, solid top, undure of the wood, has a plastic coating over it. Black shiny finish. Les Paul cut. Don't know about most of the rest, I'm more interested in playing than finding out about woods and puck ups.