JP50 review by Sterling by Music Man

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 7
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.8 Good
  • Users' score: 8.4 (20 votes)
Sterling by Music Man: JP50

Price paid: $ 499

Purchased from: eBay

Sound — 7
I play blues, rock, metal and a bit of jazz. The neck pickup sounds great when playing Hendrix or SRV, while the Bridge pickup brings the gain. I'm using a Laney LX-12 through a DigiTech RP90 MultiFX, which does its job. No noise, not much feedback. The clean tone is in between warm and bright, while the distorted tone is crunchy and full. I really like the pinch harmonics I play, could just be the strings though. The stock pickups could easily be changed out for greater sound, but they do their job.

Overall Impression — 9
This guitar was perfect for me. It's John Petrucci's guitar's son. I love JP and I love his tone/playing. I would have asked how to work this damn thing, it was a little tricky for a newbie like me, but I picked it up.

Reliability & Durability — 8
This guitar is pretty durable, no flaws in the strength. Everything is solid, not much to say about it. Finish is matte, so it's not easily scratched, but grease is visible on the black finish. A quick wipe down does the trick.

Action, Fit & Finish — 7
The guitar was set up mediocre. It was way out of tune, and the strings buzzed like crazy. Once I re-strung it everything seemed to be okay. The 12th fret on the G string goes dead, maybe due to damage, I need to get it fixed. Pickups and Bridge were set up fine. It feels great to play when properly set up. The action is low, and the neck is smooth and super fast. Great neck, and the body is comfortable.

Features — 8
- Basswood body with Custom forearm contour - Maple neck with rosewood fingerboard Custom Sterling Petrucci Neck carve - Locking Tuners - 24 medium-Jumbo frets - Sterling Modern Tremolo Bridge Recessed - 25.5" acale - 5-bolt Music Man-designed neck joint - 2x Sterling Modern Humbuckers (body mounted) - 3-way selector Switch - 1.65" (42mm) nut width - Spoke wheel truss rod adjustment - Glossy Pearl Red Burst Finish

18 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I've always been a big fan of Music Man guitars, even the sterling series. The necks aren't wide enough for my liking, but they are fast, and the tone you can get out of these things is amazing. Hate the body shapes though.
    I own the following Music Man Sterling: JP50 (6 String/Black), JP 70 (7 string/Black) and a JP 100 (6 String Pacifica Blue Burst). I also own a PRS SE Custom, Ruby Red, Semi-Hollow body (it sounds awesome for the "older rock tunes" like Zeppelin. Purple, etc.... The Music Man Sterlings sound good with the "Stock" PU's, but definitely sound awesome with the LuiquiFire/ Crunchlab PU combo.
    Alponzo Zorka
    Brad, Does the JP50 have the same neck profile as the JP100 or is it thinner front to back more like the higher end JP Music Mans?
    Seth Shadows wrote: Good review, however, $500 for a musicman?!
    You do realise that this is a sterling edition of the John Petrucci signature right?
    I do have it and it's absolutely AMAZING!! Sexy looking, comfy and with pretty good tone.. Maybe I should do a review myself
    You can dive bomb and flutter without worrying...Even after whammying to the point where the low strings were tensionless it went right back in tune
    guitarmazdur wrote: Chimara wrote: How well does it stay in tune after using the trem? Extremely well. In my opinion, the locking tuners on this JP50 work better than any locking nut I've ever played.
    Sweet! Thanks. I was considering buying this when I saved up enough money since it had a floating trem but wasn't a bitch to tune like the Floyd. It also looks hot. Also, would you recommend keeping the stock pups or swapping them?
    Chimara wrote: How well does it stay in tune after using the trem?
    Extremely well. In my opinion, the locking tuners on this JP50 work better than any locking nut I've ever played.
    GS LEAD 5
    Snowman388 wrote: Are you kidding? JP50 body shape is hot.
    The cutout thing isnt something everyone likes. I dont....I prefer a curvier body like an RGA or an LTD MH/ESP Horizon
    Just picked one of these up. I'm really really impressed that a Chinese made guitar is of this quality, and I'm normally really hesitant with thin necks.