R500 review by Stagg

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 7
  • Features: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7.8 Good
  • Users' score: 6.1 (64 votes)

Purchased from: McCormacks

Sound — 7
This guitar suits my style of playing. I tend to play mostly metal and dabble in classical and blues. I currently use a Spider II 112 with a DigiTech RP200A and Crybaby. The guitar itself is quiet warm and smooth sounding. Harmonics tend to be a bit less crisp than they should because of this. The twin humbuckers give this guitar a nice kick when using a lot of distortion though.

Overall Impression — 8
This is definitely a guitar to buy for players starting out on guitar as it is cheap, reliable and sounds good enough. I also own a Fender Stratocaster, a custom Burn's Baldwin semi-acoustic with bigsby and a very old 12-string and the Stagg is by far the best for nailing really heavy distortion but the Strat and the Burn's Baldwin are unrivaled on clean channels. If it were lost I would buy another for the simple reason that it is damn near indestructible. I wish it had a better tremolo but at 200 I don't expect to get many extra features that are outstandly good.

Reliability & Durability — 10
Biggest bonus of this guitar is it's durability and I would use it on a gig without a backup (I would however use a trusty strap). I've been playing it for about 2 years and it has survived with nothing but a couple of small scrathes. I've even dropped it a couple of times (drunk and poor strap) and it's sounded unphased by the ordeal.

Action, Fit & Finish — 7
The action on the guitar when I bought it was quite high but I lowered it as far as possible before it began to buzz. The pick-ups came nicely adjusted. The pick-up selector is quite noisy when changing. I've had to tighten the output jack on it several times since purchase which is nothing major. The frets are evenly spaced, tuning pegs are tight. The only thing that really annoyed me about this was that I had to file down the frets as they were slightly jagged.

Features — 7
The volume control is annoying as there is little difference between 6-11 (I got a volume knob with 11 on it,) and it seems to just stop suddenly when lowering volume on it. Rather rigid. Apart from that and the limited tremolo I got no complaints.

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