Sound — 8
You can't really play with the sound of this guitar because there are no tone controls. You should have to compensate this with your amp or effect pre-sets. Still, the sound of the guitar is amazing, the bridge pickup is really suited for metal and other high gain music styles and when you switch to the neck pickup, your sounds become more bluesy, heavier and more smooth. It is not the best guitar to play clean riffs on, but that's not the soul purpose of this guitar anyway. I play through a Boss GT-8, going to a Peavey 6505 and the sound is coming back at you through a Marshall speaker cab.
Overall Impression — 9
I love to play Machine Head and pantera riffs, Trivium and Metallica solo's and older trash metal stuff. This guitar is really made for the job. If you love playing santana, BB King or Clapton like styles, You should look at other guitars. One big disadvantage about this guitar is the size, There is no gigbag big enough for it. You really need the official hardcase of this instrument to travel with it. I really wish this guitar was Standard equiped with a Dimebucker. But I quess you can't have everything.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar will withstand live playing, but almost every guitar can do that right? Because the guitar has a Floyd Rose it is always a good thing to have a backup guitar, If you kill a string it will take you some time to replace it. The finish of the guitar looks realy good and I hope it will last long.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
When I got the guitar, it was second handed, so I don't know much about the factory set-up. The neck is perfect though. I played on American jacksons and ESP but this guitar had the best neck. The bridge gave some problems first, it was my first encounter with a Floyd Rose. But after some adjustments I found out that you can do really insane stuff with it. The hardware is good enough and feels solid. The grover tuners are pretty ok, but haven't really been tested yet because of the killer top-lock.
Features — 8
The guitar was made in 1999, it has 22 frets, a thin maple set neck with a 25.5 scale rosewood fingerboard. The body is completely made out of basswood and is painted black with with bindings. The body style is an Explorer-like design. The bridge is a Floyd Rose type, not a real one. It has no tone controls, only 2 volume controls and a 3-way selector. It has 2 Washburn 500 series humbuckers. All my other guitars have active EMG's and I didn't had much experience with passive humbuckers. The humbuckers in this guitar seem to do the trick very well, although I am thinking about replacing the bridge pick up with a dimebucker (a dime signature guitar is not a dimesignature guitar without a dimebucker in my opinion). It has a pickguard that looks like a mirror, Dot inlay and grover tuners.