Features: This guitar was built in 2009 supposedly in Canada (however it is clearly an inferior quality guitar). This is the third Sparrow I've had and they have all had problems with them.
It is a 21 fret Telecaster shaped guitar, mine with a gloss black finish with custom paint (which is just a few pitiful white lines). It has 2 single coil Kent Armstrong pickups with the Standard tone and volume control.
It also has grover machine heads and a diecast plastic logo on the top. For some strange reason they have also glossed the maple fingerboard too which makes playing uncomfortable and more difficult than it should be. // 4
Sound: The sound is probably the only decent thing about this guitar. The Kent Armstrong pickups do a good job on such a shamble of an instrument. I play rock music (ranging from classic rock, to hard rock, to modern pop rock) and this guitar is able to produce the sounds I require. I use it with a Strauss 30w valve amp and I have had no problems with the sound quality.
It goes well with my Boss DS-2 distortion pedal and doesn't squeal or go fuzzy. It has a nice bright sound when played without effects and is able to hold a good rock riff when i kick my pedal into action. // 8
Action, Fit & Finish: Now as I've said this is my third Sparrow guitar. It is sad to say that I have lost all Faith in these guitars. This guitar in particular had a terrible flaw. I opened up the box and instantly saw something was wrong. The neck was on crooked, the high E string went off the fretboard on the first 5 frets, making playing impossible. The action was also incredibly high.
I think I should have stopped buying these after the second one was faulty (stupid me) but I decided to give it another try and was again saddened. I think I liked the idea of a custom painted guitar but even the paint job was nothing special. // 1
Reliability & Durability: If you can get this guitar going I'm sure it will do the job on stage. Like I said it sounds wonderful and can handle many kinds of music but it is just a very awkward guitar to play and the faults in it need to be fixed before it can be taken on stage. If you can get a luthier to give it a good once over to work out the kinks in it then I'm sure it will be a fairly reliable instrument. The grover machine heads and the Kent Armstrong pickups are the sturdiest features but other than that the rest of the hardware seems cheaply made to cut corners and cost to Sparrow. The finish seems ok for the moment, there is no fading but only time will tell I guess. If this guitar was stolen then I wouldn't buy another, after 3 I've learnt my lesson. // 6
Overall Impression: Sadly I can only give this guitar a 4. After playing some of the world's greatest guitars I can't give this one much praise. I have since learnt that this guitar is not Canadian as Sparrow claims. They are built in China but sprayed and assembled in Canada. This would explain the poor set up but does not explain why Sparrow failed to correct it. Between the glossed fretboard and diecast plastic logo (which makes the guitar look like its worth $50 from crappy pawn shop) this guitar has failed on all accounts except for sound quality. Looks, playability and durabiity all fail miserably and the price of this guitar doesn't come anywhere near to what its actually worth. Bring it down to $500 and I'm sure someone will have a blast on it. // 4