There are 80s guitars and 80s guitars, but if one really summed up the whole 80s look for me it was the Steinberger GL. Fast (!) forward 28 years and:
A bit closer:
This is straight out of the box so I didn't have a chance to defluff it yet! My first import, through Sweetwater and a forwarder, and I've got to say their service was fantastic. If you don't have a sales engineer there yet, Stuart Niven is an absolute pleasure to deal with.
I got it as a travel guitar, and it fits the bill perfectly. Just under 32" long, say 36" in the bag, about 12" across at the widest point. Only 6.2 lbs, but it actually feels heavier since it's so compact.
It's all about the neck I suppose, so: neck-thru (says set neck in the spec sheet as well, but I don't think so), feels pretty much like a Gibson neck joint but not as deep. It's wider than an LP's neck, has a Fender feel across the fretboard, but the same kind of depth as a Gibson. It's hardly tapered at all, so there's a lot of heft to the neck at the 'headstock'. Maybe it's the small size, but overall I still find it pretty comfortable. Radius is almost dead flat, fretboard is a phenolic compound which looks and plays pretty much like ebony.
Pickups: EMG 81 and 85. This might be offputting to some, but they work really well in the guitar and add to the clean look.
Hardware: Outstanding. The micrometer tuners are unbelievable, honestly. Ultra smooth, there are no blips on the tuner as you tighten/loosen, just a smooth pointer movement. I haven't got round to a string change yet (it comes strung with 0.10s though, so it's coming soon) but it looks relatively simple, even with normal strings - the tool kit is onboard. Clever. Built-in leg rest is very comfortable indeed and it's a great player seated.
Sound: Ned Steinberger apparently designed for stability first, and it has that. Sustain is outstanding when you want it, but muting seems easier than most as well. The overall sound, though, is EMG, so expect to dial in the sound you want rather than pulling it out of the guitar. Downtunes comfortably to about drop-C with 0.10s, but I doubt you'd get it much lower even with heavier strings.
Originally I was looking at the longer scale Transcale, but this is primarily a travel guitar and I couldn't justify getting the longer version.
Verdict? It's very non-traditional and not for everyone - very much something I can happily sit with for hours though. Ned Steinberger took a very fresh approach to electric guitars (OK, basses originally)and came up with something very different. Try before you buy.