Price paid: $ 120
Purchased from: Costco
Sound — 6
I (try to) play grunge, mostly Green River of Pearl Jam, as well as a tiny bit of jazz sometimes. It really doesn't suit my style, and doesn't seem like it would suit anyone's style, unless you like fret buzz. I'm still using the amp it came with, which seems fine, although it's really loud for such a small one. The sound of the guitar is actually really good for such a cheap guitar, but it is still beaten out by a Squire. Can't make too many sounds, because the tone controls are almost completely useless.
Overall Impression — 6
I have been playing for about 2 years, and even though it is not a very good guitar, it is a guitar nonetheless, and shouldn't be complaining because it looks good, and can still play. If it were stolen or lost, I think I would get a Squire Strat or Jagmaster instead, because it is alright, but not that good. I don't like that it is an extremely crappy Strat clone, but it still plays and can take being dropped many times, adn the finish is durable. I have only played a few other guitars, and this one is still on the bottom, but, it is preety good for beginers or those just learning electric, so it does alright.
Reliability & Durability — 7
I don't know if this guitar will withstand Live playing, but I don't think that anyone serious about playing, or good enough to take it to a gig will even use this guitar anymore. The guitar and hardware as a while seems like it would take a beating, and the strap buttons are fairly solid. I don't think any one would even take this to a gig, unless as an emergency backup, as mentioned above.
Action, Fit & Finish — 3
The action was set up rather high when it came in, and the bridge-things were crooked too, even the pickups were crooked, and had to be adjusted. The damn frets were too wide for the fret board and scratch you if you happen to move your hand up the neck, and several of them were too big, and would make the string buzz, mostly on the first few frets. There were absolutely no finish flaws at all, but the body wood is terrible, it looks like they simply compressed sawdust together, and even the laminate seeped through the wood. The neck and fretboard, however, are fine. The tuning pegs were loose on some, so much that some strings will come out of tune right after you finish tuning them! Strings were all right on mine, but I switched them out for Ernie Ball Super Slinkies, which sound much nicer than the crappy original strings.
Features — 6
Average Strat copy, including bridge. With 3 single-coil pickups, 5-way selector, 1 volume and 2 tone controls. Looks like maple neck and rosewood fretboard, can't tell what kind of wood though on the body. Includes amp, gig bag, strap, cable, allen wrenches (2, for truss rod and bridge), spare strings, and tuner, although none of them are very good at all.