Sound — 8
I listen to heavier stuff most of the time, but I also like playing lots of blues, so this guitar does the trick. the humbucker at the bridge can handle a good amount of gain, and the SC's can get me a nice bright SRV blues sound. they also get nice sound for clean metal passages. I use this guitar with my IBZ10 amp (total piece of crap, saving up to get it replaced) without any effects, but occasionally I play it through a DS-1 and a Korg effects processor that a guy lets me borrow. on pickup positions 1, 3, and 4, it makes a pretty big amount of noise, but on 2 and 5 it's ok. the humbucker sounds pretty thick and heavy, for rock and metal, and the single coils give me the bright texas blues sound, so the guitar has a wide variety of possible sounds.
Overall Impression — 9
This guitar suits my metal style, and can also play pretty much anything decently. I've been playing bass for a bit more than a year, but I got this as my first guitar from my friend only 9-10 months ago, so I don't own any other guitars to compare this too, and I can't really explain why I purchased it since I didn't, I just got it from a friend. however, I still can say that before I got my guitar, I heard ppl bashing Squier, like "omg Squier n00bs zomg" so I thought that they were all total BS, but I'm very impressed, and I've played other squiers. a lot of people are like "zomg I need teh new guitar my Squier are teh crapzors 11". if ur one of those people, you probably just need to get it set up properly. so before you spend money that could be upgrading from ur spider III on a new guitar, just get the guitar set up, it will improve everything about it a ton. mine plays just as well as many high end guitars that I've played and sounds somewhat as decent. if mine was stolen or lost, that would suck because I've been saving up for a nice tube combo for a while, and I would have to spend that money. anyways, I would probably get another one or maybe a different low-end guitar like a RG2EX1 or something. it has very stable playability, my only gripe is that the tremolo bar stays in tune horribly, even when compared to several other guitars in the same price range. well, that's it, this is not too bad of a guitar when set up properly and it's very versatile, thanks to the humbucker in the bridge.
Reliability & Durability — 4
I played Live at a concert at my summer camp once =D and nothing bad really happened to it, so I don't see why it wouldn't be able to withstand playing Live. the strap buttons are pretty crappy, I could put straplocks on it but it's not like I do tons of shows with it. the hardware doesnt't seem very high quality, sometimes the input jack kinda flickers off when I pull it a certain direction, but that might be my cable. the finish seems kinda crappy too but that's no reason to stay way from getting this guitar.
Action, Fit & Finish — 5
The action wasn't very well set up, but I got that fixed. I play with pretty low action and there's quite a bit of buzz on the 1st fret on the B string but besides that there isnt much buzz and I'm gonna raise the bridge humbucker, but I still haven't gotten a chance to do that, umm the knobs have always been fine, I have it set up for 11's, the wood gets chipped easily, but it's a cheap guitar and I don't really give a flying f--k. I think that's really all there is to say about that.
Features — 7
Mine was made in China, unfortunately I have no clue when it was made. 21 frets, maple C-shape neck. alder body, black body with 1-ply white pickguard, synchronous tremolo (doesnt't stay in tune very well at all, but at least it's there), HSS pickup configuration, passive electronics, chrome hardware, Standard die-cast tuners, there's also a cool 60's style headstock, and I don't think there were any accesories included