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Sound Quality

I play mostly classic rock, some blues. Run most of the time through a Fender Frontman 212 and a Spyder Jam 75. Occasionally my Crate Palomino V32 half stack. This unit honks, quacks, squeals, *******, and is just plain loud, loud, loud. There are only about one or two positions where you can find a classic rock sound, the rest are mainly Tele-like and higher. If you go center pickup by itself and crank on the treble it becomes so brittle you could probably do a Memorex commercial. But in neck/center position, with upper tone knob about halfway, out comes this wonderful, beautiful, clear, classic sound. There probably were some other sounds until some previous owner tore out the ATN box. Mine is strung with Ernie Ball Slinky 10's, and it seems to like them well. No feedback anywhere, but on the other hand, sustain is just barely normal, nothing outstanding. Actually, the strings die off pretty fast compared to other units I own. But this also gives you great solo note-to-note clarity. Some places on the 5-way are just obnoxious, but some combinations are heaven. Probably about 60% twang or worse, and 40% classic rock. No Les Paul sounds here. Surfing, or C&W, anyone??

Reliability/Durability

Live OK. Hardware is now about 10-18 years old, still really good. Should be fine for gigging. Finish is still excellent. Mine came with the tinest of buckle rash on the back, polished most of it out. Neck is set deep into the body, so yes, this is pretty much a tank. Strap buttons go right into solid wood, no worries there. Mine came with a replaced 5-way switch, (all silver) everything else is gold. Also, if you find one, this is an outstanding starter unit for a young player with the thin neck and body.

General Comments

One odd thing.

The pickups, single coil Strat-type, have five wires coming out of them. Red, Green, Black, White, bare ground. So you have 15 wires working their way to one volume, two tones, one 5-way. Obviously this is a few too many wires for three single coils.

I talked to Hohner about it - the fellow knew about it but didn't really know why. They are Korean coils. Speculation on possible stacked Strat coils, or maybe just taps. I have to take it back apart and Ohm out the wires. Something to do with the ATN box, since the blacks and a couple whites are tied off in my unit. Possible that the ATN cap unit and the stacked or tapped coils became the way to more db. More winds, more db, more or less.

I think if I do find stacked Strat coils, I should be able to put in mini-switches to use for off-on of each coil, which would make this setup very unique. I'll see.

Too much gear to list.

Been playing for a couple years now, no gigs, just a hobby, albeit a serious hobby.

Love the looks, the possibility of stacked or tapped Strat type coils, and once in a while, the sheer twang of this unit. Also love that it is another odd duck in my collection.

Hate the fact someone took the ATN out and GC doesn't know anything.

Favorite feature is the action and the way the unit hugs me since it is so thin.

Picked it off a used unit wall, no comparisions.




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