MGS-1 review by Monterey

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  • Sound: 4
  • Overall Impression: 3
  • Reliability & Durability: 1
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 1
  • Features: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 3 Poor
  • Users' score: 1.7 (11 votes)
Monterey: MGS-1

Price paid: A$ 249

Sound — 4
I play mainly metal, and its kinda ok for that. The Bridge pickup actually has a lot of bite, power chords are quite nice sounding as do solos. Problem with it is that when you turn the amp on a jet engine of noise blasts you in the face, and palm muting should never be attempted with this guitar. The other pickups are sadly very subpar-The middle one is simply hilarious! Has no bass or treble and just sounds like noise, and would have no use in any music I can possibly think of. Even distortion doesnt't fix this thin, useless tinny, humming noise made by the piece of crap! Just makes it worse! The neck p-up is bad, but not as much as the middle. It has quite a nice clean tone that sounds like a decent acoustic, which surprised many people. If you put distortion on, it sounds worse than you could think possible. There is even more humming, even less treble and bass but for some reason I like the lead sound when playing really fast. The amp is also not too bad on low volumes, the mediocre gain setting making up for shortcomings. But playing loud through it is horrible. Unplugged is preferable for me anyway (I'm that lazy) but this is unbelievably shocking. Those earphones you got free with that telstra phone 10 years ago are vastly superior to tinny noise. Isn't just the pickups on the guitar, even an Ibanez RG sounds pretty bad on it, just not as bad. The standard strings are horrible. Replace them as soon as you buy it. If I didn't replace the strings, this review would be far worse. Another unplaceable annoying thing is it can't deal with more than a 2 string powerchord without the signal getting louder and softer on different strings. I think its the pickups, because using different pickups (eg, neck instead of bridge) changes this slightly.

Overall Impression — 3
Seriously, I never wish I had this guitar. Too much time wasted to try to fix everything. I wish I had told the person who gave me this to get an ESP pack instead of just any old one for my first ever guitar. I pretty much compared it to that Ibanez mentioned before, which was from memory a 600 dollar guitar. If it were stolen or lost, I would buy myself an ESP EX-260. Just simply horrible.

Reliability & Durability — 1
The strings are incredibly tight on the low E, D and B string but bass-like on the A, G and high E, and go out of tune in seconds. The neck actually fell out-Yes, fell out. As did one of the tuners and the tuning pegs. The pickups were stupidly low and loose, I thought I could pull them out. The neck has a horrible finish, is hard to sweep and alternate pick on, and is just a nightmare to play on. The finish peels away with fingernail scratching and as said before, I can scratch away the wood.

Action, Fit & Finish — 1
I don't see how the review could be much worse at the moment, but here we go.The neck was bowed forwards, and the action is ridiculously high and hard to adjust. The tremolo makes creaking noises when you use it regardless of in which way you use it. Its impossible to tremolo pick on this guitar, as it just makes a scraping sound or tinny sound. This isn't the strings or the player-happens with other players as well. Every fret buzzes on every string. It can't get any worse this right?

Features — 6
I got this guitar for Christmas in 2010. Its a 22 fret guitar made of absolute crap wood, you can actually scrape out and probably destroy the guitar with a fingernail. Its a Strat style, with an unknown crappy tremolo bridge. Has 3 single coils with 5 way selector, 2 tone knobs and 1 volume and was obviously in a pack. The amp has Bass and Treble settings, as well as Gain and volume.

12 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Ive played other montereys as well-They are exactly the same. You can buy one with a humbucker, and that has a decent tone.
    Well, there you have it. I am a strictly beginner level guitarist, so I thought that everything described above was because of my lack of ability. Turns out that it's actually the guitar. Guess it's time to buy another guitar. By the way, a_bad_curry, my guitar cost around the same price and it did come as a pack.
    I have this guitar. I bought it for $200 and it came with a terrible 10 watt amp. I bought a much larger amp and did a few modifications to the guitar and gave it a proper set up. It's actually not that bad of a guitar in the hands of a half decent player. Beginners tend to blame their lack of skills on the guitar. It's just that Monterey do an absolute shocking job in setting this guitar up at the factory. If you take the time to set it up, you will be quite happy with it. Personally I would recommend another guitar as you can get better quality guitars in this particular price range. Hope this helps.
    I actually have this guitar, first one I got, mine was second hand and I got it for $130, it was in a pack with an amp too. To be honest the amp is terrible, it sounds terrible with distortion, same goes with palm muting, sounds pretty dodgy. At times it'll come out clean, but then very distorted at times. The strings tend to buzz a lot, and yeah, tremolo picking doesn't sound all that good, sometimes it sounds like your scraping against the strings... But the power chords sound okay, but..I wouldn't exactly recommend this guitar, I highly suggest a different guitar