Purchased from: Music Works, Gisborne
Sound — 8
I mainly play 80's hard rock (Van Halen, Motley Crue, Racer X) and Metal (Megadeth, Metallica, Priest) but anything from the 60's onwards, and it's pretty versatile. The only thing I think it could do with is a coil tap. I play this through a Marshall MG50FX and Ibanez Tube King (The one with the 12AX7, so all you Solid-state haters, don't even start.)
Overall Impression — 8
My music style is pretty diverse, pretty much anything from the 60's onwards, and this guitar suits most of them. I only wish it had a coil tap and maybe a single coil in the middle. (4th posistion for the win!) If this were stolen, I would probably go for an Ibanez RG of some sort, because these are discontinued and pretty hard to find. In saying that, if I came across a used one, I'd buy it in a heartbeat. I have been playing for 2 1/2 years and I have owned a few homebuilt strats and an Epiphone SG, and a Marshalll MG50FX and an Ibanez Tube King. I compared this to an Ibanez RG350EX and the only thing that made me chose the Yamaha over the RG was the pickups and the cheaper price. My favourite feature is definately the Bridge system, very innovative!
Reliability & Durability — 10
I haven't played this guitar live yet, but in band practice it held up pretty well with some bashing of the whammy bar. The hardware and finish seem durable, and the strap buttons are solid. I've had this for about 2 months, so I'll get back to you with any problems. I wouldn't gig this guitar without a backup, 1) because I'm not an idiot and 2) if you snap a string the Bridge pulls back and goes madly out of tune, although the strings are way easier to change than the normal FR.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
I bought this used, so I can't really say on how it came from the factory, but the guy I bought it off had the action a bit too high for my liking, which was obviously easily fixed. The finish is pretty durable and looks beautiful! Not a flaw at all apart from the action.
Features — 8
Made in 2007 in Indonesia. 24 jumbo frets, 25/12 scale, Ebony fingerboard, all on a alder superstrat body with a maple cap. Floyd Rose style bridge, with a finger clamp system instead of the bolts on your typical FR, which is very convenient. 2 Alnico V humbuckers, 1 volume, 1 tone, 3 way Switch with barrell tuners. Came with a cable and a couple of allen keys.