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Things I played today.

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  • Things I played today.

    Fender Highway 1 Stratocaster through a Fender Cyber Deluxe.

    The rough finish, pickups, bridge, and neck (personal preference) were all turnoffs. The neck was too wide and the radius too flat for me. Either the pickups or the amp (or both) lacked any sparkle. I'm a tech geek, but even for me the controls on the Cyber Deluxe were way too complicated. I wasn't that impressed with the overdriven sounds I was getting out of it. The Strat was setup with 9's that buzzed a bit too much, and the trem strings weren't screwed in tight enough. I personally like the bridge plate to be flush with the top. I told the sales guy at the music superstore that I liked it and would think about it. He actually thinks I might buy it. Ha. With a decent setup, new pickups and a player that likes a beefy flat neck, it might be a good purchase. I would not recommend the Cyber Deluxe though.

    At the other, better, actual guitar shop acrossed the street...

    Fender Mexi Frankenstrat (used) through a Vox Pathfinder.

    Two words: ****. Yes.

    The Strat was equiped with Grover 18:1 tuners, Fender USA Strat pickups, and had a professional setup done by the best tech in town (with 10's!). This guitar's neck radius was much more to my liking, more vintage. The medium-jumbo frets are great. At first, even this guitar felt a little strange. I've been playing acoustic exclusively for the past year and a half, strung with 11-52's. I was having a hard time hitting the right frets and being a little more sensitive with the bends. This guitar in the middle position was chimey and sweet sounding through the Pathfinder. The only qualms I have with the Strat were in the wiring. The volume acted more like a tone control, lowering the volume slightly at 0 and rolling off the highs. One tone controlled both the bridge and middle pups, and the other, the neck. A little weird for me. The bridge is stock Mexi, but since I want to get it converted to a Wilk if I when I buy a Strat, it's no big deal. This is one of the good ones, and after a few upgrades, is a great guitar. The price is around $350.

    The Pathfinder. I love this little amp. You can squeeze so many good (quite tube-like) sounds out of it when you get creative with the controls. The spring reverb is perfectly usable, and the tremolo is good. When I owned one (minus reverb) it was rated at 15 watts but said 45 or 54 on the back plate. This one said 20. I don't know how accurate any of those numbers are, but this puppy gets pretty loud. It can make your ears ring. For the price (around $125) this is a fantastic little practice amp. I'd even record with it. The owner of the shop remarked that this is his main practice amp, and that it's the only transitor amp he's played that can sound like his old Fender Champ. I don't know what it is, but this amp seemed more responsive and organic than the Cyber Deluxe (which actually has a tube preamp, doesn't it?) I love it. When I pick up electric again, I'll be buying one of these.

    Various Garrison Acoustics

    These guitars have some kind of glass fiber cage bracing system which supposedly sustains better than wood. It did sustain pretty well, but the ones I played just felt and sounded dead in my hands. The highs were rounded off, almost like a tone control set on 7, and the bass was there, but not well defined. I was more impressed by the Chinese-made (although by hand says the sticker) Washburn Tahoe. My current Alvarez Artist acoustic sounded better than both while being half the price. I think I'll stick with the one I've got.

    I'm going back to the superstore tomorrow or monday to play some American Strats and Teles through a different amp.
    Last edited by KoreanGuitarMan; 08-14-2004, 10:48 PM.
    "Time is an illusion. Lunchtime, doubly so." ~ Ford Prefect

  • #2
    Re: Things I played today.

    Cool man thanks.. I had a similar experience yesterday.

    I tried out the Esp Ltd Delux MH-1000 (or M? im not sure) I thought it was a very nice guitar but Didnt find it too special o anything spectacular.I didn't find the neck very comfy as the finish on it was wayy different to the Oil finish birdseye on my wolfie, it didnt frrl like you were playing the neck at all but felt like you were playing a few inches of paint, but then again the Huge string guage(for me) about 11's, probobly didnt help the neck and playability situation...Although it made it look alot nicer on the ESP website i did not like the look of all the abalone all over the guitar, I thought it looks nice if your a "spectator"and watching someone play that gitar but I found the stuff wayy too much when it went about 5mm in from each side of the neck, but iI did like it on the Body..

    Then I the Highway1 Showmaster.. As You may have guessed i found the finish felt extremely brittle and I just did not particularly like it.The setup was pretty poor on everything in the shop, especially the Highway 1 as the action was at least 15mm at the 12th fret(at the least) and it was severly out of tune so i didnt bother asking for an allen wrench to tune it up..

    Next was the Ltd 400-BD, The one with the diamond plate, i have to say that this was my favorite that day, It played pretty nice and I really liked the feel of the body shape, It only took a couple of seconds before i got used to to slight awkwardness of the body.I was really expecting it to play like total crap but i have to hand it to ESP, even theirmid range stuff kicks ass..Although for the price it was there you'd think it was a high End model as it was 1275 = about $1500 you you crazy Yanks ..But thats store is the only music store in that town so it can really charge what it likes,and people dont seem to be unaware to places that sell them cheaper... I then plugged the Ltd into a Hot rod delux as the only reason i actually took it down was to try out the EMGs as id never tried them before..I only had about 5 mins to try as the store guy wanted us to leave because it was getting late and wanted to close, so I only had time to plug in and play a few clean stuff on the settings that were on the hor rod already..They really didnt sound that great but I wont comment anymore as i didnt have time to even look at the eq on the amp..
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