Price paid: £ 100
Purchased from: eBay
Sound — 4
Now, this guitar is the cheapest of the cheap, so obviously i can't give the sound more than a 5. Main musical influences are Muse, AC/DC, Guns, Metallica, Pantera, RATM... basically the rather hard hitting rock/metal genre. I have to commend the guitars low end. Stuck it straight through a buddy's Peavey Valveking 212, and the sound was heavy and fat, really suited to some Megadeth or 'Tallica or Black Label Society (though its seeming inabilty to find those harmonics means my Zakk Wylde antics are cut short). The higher up the neck you go, the sound deteriorates, much like the actions quality (which i'll get to). bends start sounding crappier, and leads sound atrocious, even the Slash/Angus Young Double stops sound crap. Clean, it sounds quite cheery and bright, however, the neck pickup sucks severely... it has seemingly no distinct sound nor qualities, so i'm constantly sitting on the bridge pick-up, using the neck/selector only as a killswitch(or as a make shift Switch to go from slightly cleaner to heavy hitting riffage) for fun. Personally, been running it through (inhales) a Marshall MG10. The oddly high volume on the MG surprsingly compliments the low end very well on this guitar, but when i add my Dunlop WahWah into the mix, the whole thing feeds back outta control, unless volume and gain are ridiculously low, so things have to be considered carefully. Slash type WahWah solos are simply impossible through this thing. Gets a 4 simply because the low end really appeals to me.
Overall Impression — 3
For my heavy hitting love of riffs, its nice... but the fat neck and horrible sound , make good soloing and leads quite difficult and damn grating to the ears. I do love this thing deep down, coz its my first guitar, and i enjoy the killswitch fun it offers with the 2 volume knobs, but overall its just crap as a guitar to any other person who held it. 2 years down the line however and i still play away on it so i'll give it credit where due. Bottom line... If your a complete beginner as I was, invest in the extra cash for maybe an Epiphone or an Ibanez, at least you may get something a bit better for your money.
Reliability & Durability — 2
I wouldn't gig with this thing, end of story, nor would I replace it if stolen. It only matters to me because its my first guitar, so there's some emotional connection I suppose. The strap buttons are rather solid, but they arent strap locks, so guitar constantly falls about, which is very irritating. this was easily changed, but still. After about 2 years, its a miracle the electronics haven't given out, so kudo's on that i suppose... but it should happen any time soon, if the overall quality is anything to judge by.
Action, Fit & Finish — 2
Set up = poor. Bass-esque height of action, edges of fret wire not filed (cut my hand on them first time... seriously), poor wood quality (might as well be plywood... which it could well be for all i know), finish marked and dented, some areas missing lacquer altogether upon reciept of the guitar... perhaps only the couriers fault. poor joint between neck and body, fret marker on side of the neck simply missing at the 7th fret. Tuning holds very well, handly plenty of playing and even the Randy Rhoads-style dive bomb technique very well, so I shall give it some credit. after plenty of adjustments I got this thing moderately functional I'd say, but I'm happy... As it gave me experience in such things I suppose.
Features — 4
This guitar follows the classic Les Paul design (24.5" Scale, Tune-o-Matic, 22 Frets on quite a chunky neck, 2 Vol. 2 Tone knobs, 3 way selector switch). One notable adjustment is that apparently on Gibson LP's, the selector is down for bridge, and up for neck, however this guitar is a reverse on this, which personally i've adapted to and think is rather cool, since its easier to slap the Switch up to kick into a lead/solo rather than have to knock it down. Not sure about wood's or year, but ill say cheap and guess around 2009(year of purchase), with what is either a graphite or nylon white nut. Cherry-Sunburst finish, rather poorly lacquered in some areas. No name Tuners hold their tuning amazingly well considering this is a budget guitar. The 2 humbuckers themselves are simply no-name no-brand covered passive PUP's, nothing special. Came with a cheap crappy 10W amp, not even worth discussing, and also a gig bag, strap and 3m cable.