Price paid: $ 130
Purchased from: eBay used
Features — 9
Striker 211 from Indonesia was a slight defect, so it was in new condition, but VERY inexpensive. Fixed bride and strings through the body. Appears to have a top cap of flamed maple and a dark black tint color. Fretboard and neck are maple and untinted. THICK neck has a lightly flattened back side and sides. Neck shape is a 'U' in that you can feel 'sides' and the thickness of it is noticeable. Passive HSS pickup set and no coil split. Non-locking tuners are smooth and positive. No accessories upon purchase.
Sound — 9
This is 1 of 2 outstanding things... the pickups are really spanky and clear into a '74 Princeton Reverb (Celestion speaker upgrade). It's a rock and roll guitar all the way. You can get 'pretty' out of it, but it is made to play fast songs and is very resonant. No darkness in the tone acoustically or plugged in... bright and clear tone and very good sustain. Rated '9' because it is so inexpensive and is well made and rock solid and a bit heavy. For rock and roll, it is nearly ideal... looks good and sounds very good and can get pinch harmonics effortlessly.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
It's not perfect, but for a very inexpensive price, I got a really nice guitar with 1 real defect. The bridge was installed barely out-of-square. So I dowelled/glued the screw holes carefully and with a perfect lineup of the saddles and pickups, redrilled carefully. No one would ever know it was worked on unless the bridge were removed. Setup as received was tolerable, but the nut slots needed to be deepened a bit, pickups raised, and the relief increased 1/4 turn (I tune down 1/2 step). The finish was perfect all over but for a very shallow and narrow scrape on the top that is not evident. Frets stay very shiny and clean and the switch and pots are quiet. No coil split for the bridge HB. 3 Truss rod cover holes exactly miss the strings, which is a nice touch.
Reliability & Durability — 9
Rugged is a good word... shiny and slick and somewhat heavy and fills the left hand with its glossy thick maple neck. All the hardware is good... not top notch, but it's a budget guitar. It's not a guitar you need to 'baby'. Solid strap buttons are a good shape and I always take a broomstraw with yellow glue to wipe the holes and let dry overnight, then re-install the strap buttons. For a kid or a guy who is after TONE, a fast action, easy pinch harmonics, versatility, no tremolo to fool with... it's a very sharp guitar. It naturally sounds good and feels right.
Overall Impression — 9
Rated '9' even aside from the fact I took a slight imperfect guitar and easily repaired it. It sounds so damn good and plays well and is a substantial feel in weight and the neck and the thick Stratty body. It's simple and strong in every way. If a budget rock and roll guitar can be a 'screamer', then this one is it. I adjust humbucker polepieces upward to make the strings balance to one another and to 'firm up' the D, A and bass E. Most guys are unaware, but if you learn to do it, you can easily get 10-15% better sounds from a polepiece guitar pickup. Some brands (Fernandes and Vantage, for example) used Allen-screw polepieces to allow adjustment of every polepiece (12 for each humbucker!) and that is a big bonus... plus both brands used good pickups to start with. Both can be excellent bargains and are well designed and made.