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Sound Quality

Against my Grestch 5120, I wish I had not bought the Grestch. That was over a year ago, and I wanted a big body hollow-body, but had I heard this, I believe I would have passed on the Grestch. It has a very rich, FULL sound, especially with both pickups on. Mostly I put it through a Fender Frontman 100 2X12, and it just shines. I don't even have a pedal on it right now. If you go for the bridge pickup, you enter that "Down on the Corner" type sound, but the Frontman helps. If you put it on neck, you get more into classic rock, but not heavy enough for metal. Distortion makes it screech a bit. The neck is just a swell classic rock pickup, just a hint of distortion added it can handle well, anything more it screechs too much for me. Both pickups and it's a great classic, just absolutely a full sounding classic. Something you might have heard any number of clean, heavy players use. Not a Fender sound, more of a Gibson/Les Paul sound. But full, full, full. I choose it because of the sound produced by the two pickups together. I love that older, more traditional sound. It does that in spades. DiMarzio pickups, or maybe TV Jones I'm sure would be hotter, as would others, but that is what my Ibanez RG is for.

Reliability/Durability

Should not be a problem at all at a gig, save for someone mistaking it for a $2000 unit and stealing it. Hardware is sound, Bigsby is a standard unit, bridge and all other items seem sound and standard. No out of the box stuff here, just good, sound appointments. Finish seems tough with the poly gloss on top, but it is a hollow, so dropping is not wise. Top strap button on the top back of the body is a silly place, it makes the unit want to walk away from your body while standing. Have to keep the strap high and tight. Strap buttons are good, but the Bigsby does take up a little space on the lower one, a nice, thick leather strap has a hard time sitting home on that bottom strap. Once located, though, it also is hard to get it off, so no worries.

General Comments

Been playing for about 18 months now, everyday if possible. At the "Dust in the Wind" stage, learning fast chord changes with fingerpicking. At my age,(old guy), this is something I wish I had done 40 years ago.

Too much gear to list.

I went into the store hoping to score a Hagstrom Viking - very happy I got this instead.

I would buy it again, no doubt. Especially over any Electromatic Grestch.

I compared it to a number of others, including some solid bodies, this was the best sounding. One note, model is a non-Bigsby and another is a Gold plated version, and I tried them all. This one sounded best, which brings home the Chinese. There is still variation. All those pickups should have sounded the same. One I tried had kind of a flat, dead bridge pickup. Same model, no Bigsby.

Another item. I wish they would mount the bridge base. Make intonation right and pin the damn thing down.

Also, the selector switch is in the most awkward position I could possibly imagine. On the other hand, I will never accidently hit it while strumming chords, since it is well protected by the Bigsby.

As far as the high fret cutaway complaints, I don't think you want to spend much time at 17 or 18 on a unit like this. I'll probably not play anything above 12 on this unit.

Lastly, if you have slightly bigger fingers, suffer from a little "finger buzz", or maybe an older player with a little arthritis, this unit is for you with it's slightly bigger neck but close to your body construction. And with the classic rock sound, what's not to love?




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