Price paid: $ 250
Purchased from: Ebay Store
Sound — 10
The EMG HZ's were OK pickups but they are essentially a cheap way of ripping off an EMG 81-85 sound through passive pickups. Definitely a good thing for young players or players not looking to spend a lot of money to get a pretty good metal/rock sound. But not so clear, they actually have a ton of fuzz in them. I replaced the bridge with an 85 and the neck with a 60. It has a ton of aggression for rhythms but still cuts through a mix with a bunch of mids. And the 60 is a little less high gain and thicker sounding so it is fantastic clean for an active. With the new pickups and having finally learned to properly set a Floyd rose this guitar is amazing. It stands it's own and occasionally surpasses my LTD deluxe EC-1000. I've run it through a little Fender 25R, a Pod HD, a Line 6 Spider IV half stack, and currently through a 5150II and a Vox Ice 9 OD. Regardless of what amp I use this thing is great. I even play things like jazz, blues and the like through my neck pickup clean. The only sounds really can't get through my setup are things like funk or country twang.
Overall Impression — 10
It is really a shame that this guitar is no longer being made. But you can still find plenty of them on Ebay or through clearance at local guitar shops. If you do, and you want a good metal or hard rock guitar. Don't pass it up. Unless you already have 4 or 5 900 dollar guitars lying around your house it is worth it. You can pick one up for 250-300 bucks and pop in some new pickups (it comes with mounting rings for the hzs anyways so any kind of Gibson spaced pickup from Dimarzios, EMGS, Duncans to even Bare Knuckles will fit) and it will clear up the tone and make play as well as some of the nicest guitars out there. Seriously. Schecter makes some of the most fantastic guitars I've ever touched. I own a G-400 EPI, this guitar, an ESP SC-207, an ESP EC-1000 and I've played probably hundreds more and this guitar is still one of the best.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Ok this is where this guitar shines. I have had it fall off it's stand and hit it's headstock on a desk. It barely put a tiny dent in it and was still in tune... I have never seen a scratch on the pain anywhere. That satin paint is freaking awesome for that. I replaced the strap buttons with Dunlop straplocks and as long as they've been on there I've never had problems with the strap. And I played this guitar for about 6 months in a metal band and was jumping around and spinning and doing stupid crap just about every night. I even ran into my bassist and vocalist a few times because we didn't see each other. This thing holds up. It looks newer than my EC-1000 and that guitar isn't even a year old.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
It was set up pretty well from the factory. Although I had no idea what I was doing at first. Undid the locking nut and started altering my tunings without adjusting my Floyd. Needless to say it started getting pretty fudged up pretty quickly. I can not emphasize enough that you should learn to properly maintain a Floyd before getting into one. Look up videos on Youtube and lessons on Google. That's what I did and after about 3 months of owning the guitar I never had a problem again. And let me tell you, once you get the springs set up once or twice with whatever string gauge and tension you are gonna have, it won't go out of tune and your action can be set super low and you'll still get plenty of clarity and tightness on the strings. Original Floyd rose's are nice. But you really don't need to have one on this guitar if you don't want to. These licensed Floyds are great if you set them up right. In regards to the finish, that satin paint is freaking nice. It doesn't show scratches and it looks really cool in my opinion.
Features — 9
Purchased back in 2008. Maple neck, rosewood fingerboard, basswood body. I got it as a factory 2nd but the only thing I found wrong with it was a tiny chip out of the paint next to the Floyd. Even when the Floyd was set up properly and the action was pretty low it concealed it though. So I recommend checking out some factory seconds and B stock guitars. Grover tuners, licensed Floyd rose bridge and EMG HZ pickups. When I bought this guitar I was still in a very early learning stage of playing guitar so the Floyd wasn't such a great choice. But now that I understand how it works it's very easy to maintain and almost never goes out of tune. The bat inlays are a bit cheesy but honestly I'd rather have something cheesy than have symmetrical dots... Plus they blend into the fingerboard so they just kind of glisten under stage lights. It looks pretty cool. The satin paint is pretty cool too. I really love satin paint on guitars. Gloss only really looks cool until you actually play it and then it's covered in smudges and scratches. And for someone who plays lots of shows and is always using his guitars. I'd rather have it still look cool after all of that abuse.