C-1 Blackjack ATX FR review by Schecter

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 7
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.1 (102 votes)
Schecter: C-1 Blackjack ATX FR
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Price paid: $ 755

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 10
Awesome sound. It squeals, it crunches, it sounds great clean. About the only thing it doesn't do well (at least in my opinion) is blues. I feel like there's too much sustain and a good blues note should die a little quicker. I might be crazy though and I'm used to my Strat. At any rate, it's not advertised as a blues guitar and sounds great at everything else. The Seymour Duncan Blackouts put EMGs to shame.

Overall Impression — 9
Again, for the money, this is a killer guitar with tons of range, a great look, and great features. Yes, there are a few rough edges from a fit and finish perspective, but that's somewhat to be expected in a Korean made guitar at this price point. None of the flaws on mine are anything serious to kill the overall rating.

Reliability & Durability — 8
This is my first guitar with a Floyd Rose and I am curious to see how that holds up with time. I will say I have some doubts about that part (especially the string clamping surfaces). The flat black finish is also something I would be concerned about the longevity of. It'll probably show wear and scratches pretty easily. The rest of the hardware all seems good to last.

Action, Fit & Finish — 7
I really like this guitar, so I hate to do this, but I have to ding it in this category. They really shouldn't put the big American flag sticker on the back bragging about how it's set up in the US if they're going to do such a half-assed job on it. I really don't think they even tried. The trem sat at the wrong angle (although I suspect it might have actually been level if tuned a half step down from Standard tuning) and the bridge pickup had it's height totally different on the bass and treble side. I've read other reviews for Schecter guitars where people complained about the action from the factory being too high. Mine was also clearly too high. As for overall quality, it's way better than the Ibanez guitars I've looked at, but not great. The routing for the back cavity is not very well done and the covers don't sit quite level. The flat black finish with light yellow edging is really cool, but when you look closely at the edge of where the flat black and yellow meet up, it's not perfect and you can actually see slight jaggedness from the edge of the tape used to mask it during painting. There's a dust spec imperfection in the paint in one place. Also, the sanding where the neck and body match up isn't quite as smooth on the top side as it is around the rest of the border. All that said, I'm still going to give it a 7 in this category because (despite some minor detail flaws) it still looks great and has TONS of features for the money. I paid $755 for this guitar and you'd be hard pressed to find a guitar for under $2, 000 that comes close on features. The setup issues are all things that one can fix in an afternoon of tinkering and you have to look really closely to see the flaws in the finish. Also, as mentioned above, I looked at a few Ibanez guitars recently and even the pricey Prestige series guitars had serious quality and fit and finish problems.

Features — 10
Tons of features: Mahogany body; 24 frets on a set neck with an ebony fretboard; active Seymour Duncan Blackout pickups that are truly awesome; original Floyd Rose trem. I think I like Ibanez's ZR trem system better than the original Floyd Rose, but I haven't owned one to be able speak to what it's like to Live with it. As for other stuff in the box, there's not much to speak of. There's no handbook with setup specs or anything like that. It comes with 4 allen keys, but I've only identified two different sizes of allen screws on the entire guitar so I'm not sure what the other two allen keys are for. It also comes with the lowest quality patch cable I've ever seen - I'm not sure why they even bothered including it. No case included, which sort of sucks, but given the price I can't blame them.

19 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Megalomaniac46
    decayingdave wrote: This is the same as most schecters, nice hardware but a bland appearance. This is a nice review, but the guitar's got no identity - and for a heavy guitar brand that competes with ESP, BC Rich and Dean, schecter's not at the top of the pile as far as I'm concerned. Nice review, though far too over-zealous for my liking, you did well - Shame the guitar sucks!
    Are you kidding me?! I'm guessing you have never played a Schecter. You shouldn't even mention BC Rich or Dean in the same sentence. I bought this guitar about 4 months ago (minus the floyd) and it is by far the nicest guitar I have ever played. Period.
    falco.1993
    I tried one of these today...the blackouts seem just a bit too touchy for my liking. i barely touched a string and it made a pretty loud noise. I can't really say much for the tone because i was playing through a Peavey Vyper, which pretty much throws natural tone out the window. Comfortable neck though. But if they're only gonna put one inlay on a guitar, why an arrow? Kinda lame...and I'm a noob so i need more than one inlay lol. Great sustain though, I played the intro to "Flash of the Blade" by Iron Maiden and it sang like a canary. Sounded pretty good for "Master of Puppets" too.
    l0rd0ct0d0rk
    my friend owns one of these, and the picture don't do it justice. looks way better in person
    Schecter_Andy
    they also told me at the shop that sammo_boi was a prick, i didnt believe them at first but i guess they were right on both accounts....
    Schecter_Andy
    I purchased the c-1 blackjack atx without the floyd rose over a week ago. At first i wasnt a big fan of how it looked, but this guitar rocks my socks. I was also told by multiple people at the shop that this one was much better than the fr version as far as string tension and tunability goes.
    Atheistgreek
    what`s better?? this one or jackson dkmg??? (jackson is about 100 - 150 euros cheaper). Which one should i buy??
    Rautio
    The inlay sucks a bit, yeah, but it's still better than those ESP (ltd) "EC-256" -style or even "ESP" -inlays.
    talon_scca09
    jenjef : For what it is it's well worth the money. But if you're looking to buy a superstrat-type guitar for heavy metal or great soloing, there are better guitars out there. Try ESP, try Ibanez, try Jackson. But this one definately is not more than a 'good' guitar.
    I absolutely do not agree with that statement. I've own a Jackson Dinky from the 90's, Blows it away. A Jackson USA SL-2 Soloist, ATX sounds and plays better. Ibanez RG570,550,Jem7dbk, sounds better and plays smoother than all of them. My gibson Les Paul custom sounds heavier but the tone is better with the blackouts. ESP MH400B flat black didn't sound as good with EMG's but felt kind of similar. But i do prefer the blackjack over all of them.
    talon_scca09
    bobthebum16 : This, jackson dk2m, or a prs SE custom 24. Which is better? POSTED: 09/09/2009 - 111 pm / quote |
    Definitely the Schecter. I have a Jackson Dinky sitting right beside mine right now with DiMarzio's in it and the Schecter feels better in your hands and absolutely sounds better. And i have to say i have the OLD Jackson Dinky from the late 90's when they were still awesome guitars. These newer Jacksons don't hold a candle to the older ones IMHO.
    talon_scca09
    fretboardman wrote: maybe the lightning means it is shocking?
    According to the 2009 catalog,the lightning is the "Active Symbol" for the pickups. lol
    talon_scca09
    I have the tune-o-matic version and it is SICK. Schecter locking tuners, Tone Pros locking tune-o-matic bridge and i play it through a Peavey Vypyr 75. Absolutely awesome.
    SOADriff
    Atheistgreek wrote: what`s better?? this one or jackson dkmg??? (jackson is about 100 - 150 euros cheaper). Which one should i buy??
    Schecter by a mile.
    sc_stanger
    I just ordered mine yesterday!!! It's gonna be my Drop C dominator!!! First thing i'm gonna do when i plug in is pull off a whammy dive! This will be my first floyd rose equipped guitar so don't mind my excitement