Synyster Gates Custom review by Schecter

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  • Sound: 6
  • Overall Impression: 5
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 4
  • Features: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 6 Neat
  • Users' score: 8.7 (545 votes)
Schecter: Synyster Gates Custom
4

Price paid: $ 1049.99

Purchased from: Shecter

Sound — 6
The first amp I plugged this guitar into was a Peavey 6505+ with a TS9 Tubescreamer providing some extra gain. The Invaders did exactly what they were supposed to. The gain was crisp, the response was spot on, and the attack and presence were powerful. It sounded great for Hard Rock and metal!... ...And that was it. After that I tested out the cleans on a Fender Deluxe 65'. The cleans were clear, but they weren't very full or articulated. Things beefed up a bit on the neck pickup, but at the sacrifice of clarity. After a big of EQing I was able to get a decent sound out of them, but nothing I would play on a record or at a show. The last amp I tried was a Vox VT30 to test how it sounded through a beginner-ish amp. Again, with high gain I was able to get a nice and crunchy sound, but after I rolled the gain off the high output of the pickups tended to make things ratty and tinny. I'd give the metal tone a 9, but all else a 4. I'll split the difference and put 6 as the rating, however.

Overall Impression — 5
The specs seem great, but the fact of the matter is that this is a Korean made guitar with a huge price tag. It's got the looks, but I don't think it really walks the walk for anything outside of metal. It's a very limited guitar, and the quality control on that neck is something that I just cannot look past. We've got 2 of these in store, and they're both the same. Personally, I think it's a marketing thing. Avenged Sevenfold fans will buy the guitar if it plays like a dream or a 2x4. Simply for that, they get away with the awfully high price tag for the low quality paint, wood, tuners, and QC.

Reliability & Durability — 8
I can't really comment too much on this, because it's a shop guitar. What I will say is that I almost never have to re-tune it after customers get their hands on it all day. The OFR is a very quality tremolo. We've had it a few months and our younger customers really dig on it. I've yet to have to change a string or resolder the jack from basic abuse. My only complaint is that the Polyester finish picks up fingerprints and dust like none other!

Action, Fit & Finish — 4
This where I had my biggest issues. I've always felt rather comfortable with Schecter necks, but this one irked me. I'm not sure if the one I played was just a mistake on the cutting press, but the neck was decidedly chunkier feeling than any of the C-1 Hellraisers we had in store. The 25.5" scale and Jumbo frets married well, but I still couldn't get over the shape of the neck. However, the biggest problem with the neck was the lacquer. The pained portion of the neck itself is incredibly sticky. After any customer plays it, I find myself walking over to it with a rag to wipe all the grease that gets left behind. Normally lacquer doesn't bother me, but the grip that this neck has on the backside is a bit too much for me to ignore. Also, the ends of the frets were unfinished. I snagged my palm on the 13th fret quite often. The Floyd Rose is an OFR, so it's rock solid as expected. No comments there other than awesome! The hardware felt solid and secured. I also really dug the upper fret access. The heel cutaway as done very well.

Features — 7
This is a set neck mahogany guitar like we're used to seeing from Schecter, although with a body shape we're not. The Synyster Custom is the upper class of the two signature guitars of Synyster Gates, a guitar player in Avenged Sevenfold. The first thing that really captures your attention, of course, is the crazy body shape, followed by the pinstripes and headstock. I'm not usually a fan of crazy shapes, but this one's pretty alright in my opinion. The one thing I couldn't get over, though, is the incredibly tacky headstock shape. It seems lifted from a doodle middle-schooler's notebook next to the Metallica logo in pencil. The hardware aspect makes as promising case with signature Invaders from Seymour Duncan and the Original Floyd Rose. There are separate tone controls for each humbucker with a master volume knob as well. I wasn't necessarily a fan of the placement of the three-way switch, but that's personal preference. The fretboard is a 14" radius Ebony with 24 Jumbo frets and "REV" inlays. I was a bit disappointed that we only got 18:1 Grover tuners instead of locking tuners. For a $1, 000+ guitar that's not even Japanese made, I'd expect a bit more in the hardware details.

11 comments sorted by best / new / date

    jetwash69
    Himeridon wrote: ...The guitar withstands divebombs pretty good, but it does need to be retuned after a couple. (At least mine does)...
    Sounds like you're not stretching the strings enough before calling your string change complete. If it still has the factory strings, then they probably weren't stretched enough either. Time = money and most professionals won't take the .5 to 1 hour required to fully stretch the strings so you can have stable tuning. I can dive bomb all day for 6 months with my Standard and it won't go out of tune.
    Air_Stryker
    This guitar seems to be like Marmite. You either love it or you hate it. Personally, I love it. I don't own one, and I'm not a huge fan of Avenged Sevefold (I do like 'em a bit). I like the shape, granted, not everyone will, and I don't care that it's a signature guitar. Why is that a problem? If you are a huge fan, why WOULDN'T you want to own your favourite guitarist's axe? Me personally I have a Washburn Dime 333. Basically a Dean ML, yeah it's a ridiculous shape just like the Syn custom, and it's got lightning bolts on it. If I had the chance to play a live gig though, I would choose that over my LTD EC 1000, because it represents me in a sense, as well the guitarist who designed it. It shows more of the kind of music that I like (Pantera) and that I respect my idols. I don't see what's wrong with that.
    gab4554 wrote: Before i offend anyone : I love A7x and SYN. Nice guitar (good shape, color inlays etc) and the sound must be awsome.. but why take a guitar that isnt yours at all... I dont see the point of buying Band's guitar.. Id make my own custom guitar instead of buying their guitar.. if i was a popular guitarist like him with my own custom guitar i wouldnt sell copies of my guitar.
    Yeah, that sounds like a grand idea... oh. Wait no I found a flaw. See, you appear to have assumed that everyone here on UG is ALSO a talented luthier. What a daft mistake to make. I'm sensible, I know if I tried to craft my own guitar, it'd be some soppy old piece of s**t, that's why you go out and buy them. With money . Because there are people out there who are talented at what they do, unlike me, your average Joe sitting the other side of the internet.
    jetwash69
    Air_Stryker wrote: ...Yeah, that sounds like a grand idea... oh. Wait no I found a flaw. See, you appear to have assumed that everyone here on UG is ALSO a talented luthier. What a daft mistake to make. I'm sensible, I know if I tried to craft my own guitar, it'd be some soppy old piece of s**t, that's why you go out and buy them. With money. Because there are people out there who are talented at what they do, unlike me, your average Joe sitting the other side of the internet.
    A few good points there, but you make it sound like Brian Haner is a luthier and designed this guitar from the ground up. No. You can go to the Schecter Custom Shop site and lay out the options you want. Like basic shape (Avenger), sculpted/flat top (flat), fretboard wood (ebony), neck joint (set neck), pickups (SH-8), trem (OFR), headstock (devil horns), wood (mahagony), and knob type. Then send in sketches of special graphics for the finish and inlays--or if they're sponsoring you, they'll sit down with you and help you come up with all the choices and do the art for you. You don't have to be a luthier for that.
    perko1
    This is my dream guitar. I played one at a guitar shop a few weeks ago and I must say i was very impressed. Had so much fun with the whammy bar lol. Price was like $1,500 though
    dj1991
    bladeguy wrote: milwaukeerocker wrote: i'm finding it hard to believe so many people actually think this thing looks "so awesome." This is one of the worst body shapes i've ever seen, just stupid looking, and the paint job only makes it worse. I played one at the music store i work at, nothing special at all. instead of the "SYN" inlay, it should say "POS." You probably played with the standard version
    Would that make much of a difference, it's still garbage
    Sparda93
    I think this dummy guy called *Synyster Gates* has an ego the height of Mt. Everest, your nickname/alias as inlays? Please..and no, i don`t like A7X, for obvious reasons.
    Most_Triumphant
    I tried this out through a Marshall JCM800 and a Fender Bassman (blackface). It does distortion really well, but if you want a clean sound find a better guitar.
    JB95
    Man, I'd just look like a total fanboy with that guitar, since the guitarist of A7X has his name as fretmarkers on the guitar... Not a realy big fan of signature guitars like that to be honest.
    jetwash69
    You can do the same thing with Warmoth, ESP, etc. But that's not the point. The point is if you're a famous artist endorsing a guitar company, you don't have to be a luthier to come up with a popular signature model.
    JustRooster
    You can go to the Schecter Custom Shop site and lay out the options you want.
    Sure, if you wanna pay that much for a mediocre guitar for the price.