Okay, so i rock out a bit.... metal and hard rock, think Savatage, Satriani, Gary moore, using a range of amps and pedals, and modelling systems, favourite amp, is a Laney Chromezone, , but i also have real amps from boogie, blackstar, fender, ampeg, and peavey, Out of the box, the neck and middle pickups are acceptable, enough warmth to make it fat, and reasonable , but not precise definition, although a bit of lack of "chunk" but i found the bridge pickup to be brittle and uninvolving, and i have changed it out....
|Action, Fit, & Finish ||
i always knew i was going to be spending some time settling it to make it sound how i want.... and i recognize that the Indonesian guitars are cheaper, and less wonderfully built.... but.....
Bad bits first.
1) the quality of the soldering in the control cavity, is appalling. dry joints and solder starved joints, all over the place.... the main output cable came away from the volume pot as soon as i so much as looked at it.
2) The shielding paint is incompletely applied , and not properly bonded to the earth .
3) The neck was pitched incorrectly, on removal, i found lots of wood shavings from the neck bolts wedged behind neck in the rear of the pocket... (bridge end )
4) fret ends were hardly what i call smooth.... and the top surfaces were not really very well polished....
5) general set up was a bag of nails.... intonation miles out, action weird, and truss rod needed slackening a tad to correct the relief.
6) the fingerboard radius does to match the trem profile... so the E strings are a little high when the D&G strings are a little low. shimming is such a pain in the ass to go through.... but hey ho
7) these new trems, lack the insert knife edge showing to help align the balance point .... they're a pain in the ass to get balanced accurately..
8) action at the nut is high.... with no means of adjusting it, other than removing the nut, shaving the wood beneath it, and then refitting it..... that SUCKS>...
9) and where is the string retaining bar ??? the thing goes sharp when you clamp it, the nut assembly is definitely inferior to those on my Jems and RGs
1) it's very pretty.
2) the neck is quite nice, once properly adjusted, fret ends smoothed off and fret crowns polished...
3) once the neck pocket was sorted, the tone improved markedly... improved sustain, and more solidity to the tone.
4) the clever electronics, now properly soldered, and bridge pickup swapped out, work very well, and provide a wide selection of tones, once I'd worked out how best to integrate a new pickup with it, it all made sense...
5) the balance is beautiful,
6) it hangs on a strap as if it's made of helium , my reason for buying, as i have an old neck injury....
7) now I've doctored it, it sings.... result....
My conclusion, good value at the price i paid, which is NOT the full retail.... if I'd paid full RRP for it, I'd be pissed ......
so.... if you have the skills, or are prepared to spend a bit getting it sorted, then it's a lovely thing...... but if all the retail versions are built like this one, it's well over priced.....
I'm NOT a Herman Li fan, i really do not like dragon force.... but i wanted something with 24 frets, in an S series format, and NOT a ZR trem.... which I'm also not really fond of....
In the long term, I suspect I'll end up swapping the trem out for a proper Edge (as on my JEMs and RGs) but I'll give it a go first...
it's VERY pretty though......
definitely try before you buy, and do not be fobbed off with a new one in a box rather than the display model you actually played..... buy the one you play IF it meets your expectations.
did i mention it's unfeasibly pretty????? :D
|Reliability & Durability ||
not long enough to know.
|Customer Support ||
My uk distributor (headstock), have historically been very helpful to me..... however in fairness, i should mention that many years ago i was a main dealer.... I've been out of the MI retail trade for 11 years now, but still have friends in useful places (thus the relatively low price i mentioned)
|Liked about it ||
it's REALLY pretty.....
it weighs bugger all.
the balance on a strap is superb, totally neutral balance.....
|Didn't like ||
pickups, especially the bridge pickup.
shoddy lock nut fit
lack of string retainer bar
see also comments about action and fit....
Was this review helpful to you?
Report this review