J7 review by Washburn

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.1 (16 votes)
Washburn: J7

Price paid: $ 800

Purchased from: Crazy Horse Guitars

Sound — 9
I chose this over other guitars I was looking at (Ibanez, Epiphone, Hagstrom) in large part that it has a solid spruce top... Much fuller acoustic tone. Very versatile... From mellow jazz, to a very nice approximation of acoustic tone, to crunchy rock (before I put on the flatwounds). I got it primarily for jazz. The pickups sound good. Washburn doesn't give any information about them. They measure around 8k ohms. Anyway, they sound quite good. I was considering putting in some Gibson Classic 57s (what I have in my 335), but I like the stock well enough to keep them.

Overall Impression — 9
I play a wide range of music types, but use this guitar primarily for jazz. I've been playing off and on for about 40 years and own about 30 guitars. This one is in my top 5 favorites. I'm very happy with it. I play at church, and our sound guy claims this is the best sounding of all my guitars.

Reliability & Durability — 9
It is a solidly built guitar. I expect to get a lifetime of use out of it. I've played it live several times, and would not hesitate to take it to a live situation without a backup. It stays in tune quite well. Came with a nice hard-shell case. The gold plating seems a bit thin, but that is the case with just about all guitars with gold hardware... Even the high-end Gibsons I've had.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Overall the fit and finish is good. I found a couple minor finish flaws... One in the binding on the headstock, and one on the f-hole binding. It is a very pretty guitar, and the gold hardware and abalone inlays really set it off. I cut the nut grooves a bit to get lower action. Fret 15 was a bit high, so I leveled, re-crowned, and dressed it. There were some bubbles on the finish of the Bigsby. I called Washburn and they promptly sent out a replacement.

Features — 9
I wanted a full-size jazz box, and after quite a bit looking around, settled on this J7 Washburn. I guess you'd call it "new old stock" because it is a 2008 model that I purchased in late 2011. It came with a hard-shell case. It is all blonde... Laminated quilted maple back and sides, solid spruce top, set maple neck with rosewood fretboard, medium frets, MOP and abalone inlays. I has gold plated hardware, Grover Imperial tuners, Bigsby trem, TOM floating bridge and Washburn's humbucker pickups. It's big.. Body bigger than a dreadnought acoustic. Neck feels real nice... Just the right amount of chunk to it. It is 25.5" scale neck. I have it strung with 12-52 flatwound strings.

4 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I bought mine for jazz. I love it, it's exactly what I was looking for in a big jazz box with lots of mellow, jazzy tone.