Price paid: $ 799.99
Purchased from: Brass Bell Music
Sound — 10
This guitar is great for what I play. I play blues, thrash, metal, and classical. The JB at the bridge is great for my metal taste, good crisp sound from it. The neck alnico is bright and rich, great for blues. I play it through a cheap rogue RG120R with upgrade Celestion 12" speakers, and it sounds amazing. The tonal range of this guitar is amazing. You can get just about any sound out of it if you tweak the pickups enough. I like to blend the two, keeping the Alnico up a bit higher than the JB, which gives me a more bass-heavy sound.
Overall Impression — 9
this guitar fits what I play superbly. I have been playing for 4 years, and am currently involved with a thrash/metal band. Along with this guitar, I own a Fender american fat Strat and a Jackson WRMG Warrior, a Yamaha CG-111 classical nylon string, and an Alvarez RD 10 steel string. Out of all my electric guitars, this by far sounds the best. It's also a close second for playability, tied with my Jackson. If this were stolen, I'd buy it again, but probably in the hollow body variant. Again, the one complaint I have about it is the buzzing int he lower register on the E, otherwise it is great. I compared this guitar to a Les Paul of comparable price, and the AES620 beats it hands down. The sustain is amazing, the electronics are great, and the body seems more comfortable to me. While it is a bit uglier than the Les Paul, I'd still go with it.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar will definitely withstand live playing, and the hardware is good and solid. The strap buttons are well attached and oversized, so it'd be very hard to pull the strap off of them. I would use it without a backup for sure. The finish is as good as the day I got it.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
I cannot judge the factory setup, as the guitar I bought was a on display at the store. for the most part, the action was good, the pickups well-adjusted, and no overall flaws, however I'm not sure if this was the work of the store techs or the factory. One complaint I have is that no matter what, I constantly get a buzzing on the 1st thru fourth fret of the low E. The neck is perfectly flat and even if I set the action outrageously high or adjust the bridge saddles, I still get buzz.
Features — 9
Made in Japan, 2005. 22 frets, set neck, abalone fret markers, scale is on the shorter end, 24 3/4", 13 3/4" radius, jumbo frets. Rosewood fingerboard, mahogany neck. Quilted top, single cutaway design. TOM bridge, string-thru body, passive electronics. Seperate volume controls for neck and bridge pickups, 1 tone control, 2 humbucker design, Seymour Duncan JB at bridge and Yamaha made alnico at the neck. Comes standard with grover tuners. The cutaway is great, being partially filled in it gives a good brace for your hand when playing in the upper register.