MusicMan John Petrucci Mystic Dream user reviews
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- When I was hunting for a killer superstrat type guitar, I looked at several options in my sub $2,000 price point. I looked at Ibanez, Jackson USA, ESP, Carvin, all the usual suspects. However, reviews online kept leading me to this one... the USA made Music Man John Petrucci signature model. I'd heard about Music Man before, but had very limited experience with them prior to October of '09 when I purchased my JP6. Now, I'll say that I'm not normally very gung ho about the idea of signature guitars, but this one was definitely an exception. The feature-set is very lucrative for a lead based guitarist like me. Some of the highlights are as follows:
*Basswood body with contoured rib and arm scoops
*Maple neck with rosewood fretboard, 24 frets, and Music Man's proprietary gunstock oil neck finish (extremely fast and smooth, plus it is easy to clean as well!)
*Dual DiMarzio humbuckers (Models from 2005-2009 have the D-Sonic in the bridge and a Petrucci Special in the neck, whereas the models from June 2009 and onward have the Crunch Lab and LiquiFire in those positions.) I've had both sets of pickups in identical JP6s so I will discuss the tonal differences in the sound column.
*Custom designed Music Man recessed two-point tremolo (non-locking)
*Schaller M6 locking tuners
*Music Man compensated nut
The guitar is extremely ergonomic and sits very well on the body. While it is heavier in weight compared to say, the Parker Fly's that I've owned, it's still quite light for a standard superstrat. I've had two of them, a 2007 (NOS) and a 2010. Both were very consistent in their features and general quality, which I think speaks very favourably to Music Man's QC department. All in all, this is definitely a very stellar guitar with a feature-set that allows great versatility with the piezo pickup option, but because of its design, it really allows lead players to flourish and play to their best!
- As I stated above, the guitar's design is quite ergonomic. It balances very well in sitting or standing positions, and is light enough to not act as an inhibitor to stage antics. The upper fret access is definitely a high point (pun intended) overall. When I would go to play a fast run covering the whole of the fretboard, I never had to worry about my hand hitting a neck joint.. it would just glide to the top. Obviously the system wasn't FLAWLESS (being that the guitar was a bolt on), but as far as upper fret access, I had no real problems with either of my JPs.
Possibly the best feature of the neck is the finish. Music Man uses a proprietary blend of gunstock oil and wax to finish their necks, and the end result is a slick and EXTREMELY comfortable neck to play on! This finish, combined with a thinner but manageable neck profile really allowed my fingers to fly about the fretboard. It really made for a killer playability experience overall... and it's definitely one of the biggest, if not the biggest, selling points of the JP6 (or even other EBMM guitars in general.)
The other big point about this guitar is the tones that it offers. The JP has a custom wiring scheme that is optimized to offer maximum performance from minimal controls. On the magnetic side, there is a volume, tone, and a 3 way toggle switch. The switch offers three sounds which are different from the typical 3 way setup in one big way. You have your standard neck and bridge pickup settings, but the middle position is actually the inner coil of each humbucker. This provides a very "jangly" sort of tone that has less output, so it allows you to get good cleans just by hitting the toggle and the channel switcher on your amp, as opposed to having to coil tap your humbucker or engage parallel wiring. If this wasn't enough, you've got the option of a piezo pickup. For those who don't know, a piezo pickup is a design that allows very acoustic-like tones. To activate this, there is a second 3 way toggle that selects magnetic signal, piezo signal, or both mixed together (a very unique sound to be sure.) But wait, there's even more! The JP has two 1/4" jacks. One of them is stereo to allow use of the piezo, and the other is magnetic only. What this allows you to do is use the piezo toggle as a kill-switch of sorts... which I found quite cool to have!
All in all, this is definitely an extremely versatile instrument that allows a whole variety of tones with very minimal controls which is definitely a great thing!
- This guitar, being designed for John Petrucci, is obviously going to excel at the sorts of tones that he uses. I'm not a HUGE Dream Theater fan, but I definitely go for a similar tone/rig setup to John's. When I purchased the guitar, I was using a Mesa Boogie Mark III (green stripe) head and a Basson Sound B212 speaker cabinet with Emience Legend drivers. All in all, I was able to get excellent clean, mid-gain, and higher gain settings (more specifically on the 2010 model.) Being that I owned two Petrucci's made three years apart, I have had experience with both sets of the pickups used in the guitars from 2005 onwards.
2007 JP6 - I found the Petrucci Special neck pickup to be extremely smooth and vocal like. It had medium output, so I found that it cleaned up very well using the volume control on the guitar, but it also took gobs of gain quite well. I used it only for lead passages or clean tones, relying on the bridge pickup for all of my rhythm based sounds. The D-Sonic was a fairly hot pickup... though it didn't have absurd amounts of output. I found it to be a bit more sterile on the cleaner and low gain type of sounds, which was something that I didn't care for. The higher gain tones were nice, but I found that it didn't have the tightness that I was looking for (I found it to be more of a looser vintage vibe, but still with lots of output available.) It's definitely a great sounding pickup, just not for the modern high gain type of tone that I expected it to do.
2010 JP6 - The LiquiFire neck pickup carries on where the JP Special left off. It retains a lot of the liquid like quality of the JP Special (hence the name), but I found that it had a little more output overall and seemed to have a little more kick to the sound. I found myself using it in the same manner that I had the JP Special, but I was trying different settings (IE: Less gain, more high end, etc) with better results. The Crunch Lab is what I expected the D-Sonic to be. It had a tighter attack and took high gain a lot better. Where the D-Sonic might have gone a little bit muddy, the Crunch Lab stayed nice and chunky, even at very high gain settings. All in all I felt these pickups were certainly an improvement over the JP Special and D-Sonic due to the fact that they simply sounded more like the pickups I expected from a John Petrucci signature guitar.
Being that the current production models (from June 2009 onwards) have these new pickups, I have no problem recommending a new JP6 to someone who really wants a great modern sounding superstrat.
- Overall Opinion
- When I was shopping, I tried various "mass production" guitars from Ibanez, Jackson USA, and Fender, and looked into guitars by companies like Carvin, ESP, or Parker (I own a Fly Deluxe, so I considered complimenting it with a NiteFly or another USA Fly.) However, in my seaching online, I kept coming across Music Man, Music Man, Music Man. It was my first foray into the "boutique" world and I haven't looked back since. The Music Man guitars have a great thing going for them. Sterling Ball is notorious for his stance on quality control, and I can safely say (having owned two JPs and played numerous JPs, Axis' and Silhouettes) that it's all for something. The guitars are extremely consistent and play/feel like very few others do and that's a great selling point. The Mystic Dream flip/flop finish is really eye catching and really made me stand out on stage in any setting, which was great as well.
My only real caveat with the guitar was a personal one, and that was the fact that it said John Petrucci on it. I'm not JP, so it felt very odd to have a guitar with his name on it. Ultimately it sort of limited me, as I found myself playing mainly Dream Theater type riffs or JP type lead lines. Obviously this would be more of a psychological thing, but in the end it was a bit frustrating. The other thing of note is that EBMM guitars almost always develop paint cracks by the neck pocket. At first I was scared and thought they were wood cracks, so I arranged to have a replacement guitar shipped in via my dealer. However, after doing research I realized that they were finish cracks only. It's nothing to worry about structurally, but it is an annoyance for sure, and you would think that Music Man would make inroads to fix it in some way... ah well.
All in all, the EBMM JP6 is truly an awesome "shredder's" guitar. It has a killer design, great neck profile with that gunstock oil/wax blend finish, plus now it has been updated with the stellar DiMarzio LiquiFire and Crunch Lab humbuckers. A great guitar that I would surely buy again if I was in the market for that specific type of guitar. However, I realized that a Les Paul was more my speed, so I no longer own one.
- - made in USA
- 24 frets, 2 dimarzio custom humbuckers (a modded steve's special with more mids and a air norton with more output and clarity) and a piezo
- floating trem (with locked schaller MD)
- 2 volumes (1 for the passive pickups and one for the piezo), 1 tone, 1 switch for the passive humbucker position and one for passive/piezo selection (passives alone - passives+piezo - piezo alone)
- - This guitar is so easy and confortable to play...
- - you can play nearly all styles of music with this axe: with just 2 humbuckers and one piezo you have 7 différent sounds:
- bridge pickup
- inner coils splitting (very strat like sound)
- neck pickup
- piezo + bridge pickup
- piezo + inner coils splitting
- piezo + neck pickup
The piezo alone sounds great, even on an electric amp, and it kills with an electro accoustic amp. There are two output jacks (magnetic+piezo - piezo) to make the use of thoses two types of amps possible in live conditions. If i remenber well, if no cable is connected to the piezo output, the signal of piezo and magnetic pickups are mixed together (magnetic+piezo output), otherwise the piezo and magnetic signals are separated
- Overall Opinion
- A great guitar
User reviews in other languages
- - US guitar.
- 24 frets, 2 humbuckers Dimarzio customs. 3 positions with a power and a custom piezo pickup.
- Floating Vibrato. string height adjustable thanks to the integrated screw completely relax without the strings ... compromise between the fixed bridge in the stratum with the floyd rose except that the blocking is done on the mechanical sleeves (three divided by the time change of a rope from the floyd)
- 2 volumes (Dimarzio and piezo), tone + 2 selectors: one raised a little higher and a second side handle to activate the piezo, di Marzio or two at a time. Behind the guitar settings bass - treble and mix the piezo.
- John Petrucci benchmarks - maple wood, rosewood fingerboard. adjusting rod of the handle easily accessible at the heel.
- - The handle is really nice ...
- Cutting the stomach, before cutting to the right forearm ... Comfort. 5 inches thick, 94 centimeters in length and 3 kg.
- - Ultra versatile instrument, a sound goes everywhere. The piezo pickup is a big plus, even on a power amp.
- I play on an ENGL head.
- All have their specific positions and sound really good. The piezo sensor is great. we can even split his power with his electroaccoustique ... really fun and original.
- The thing that I regret: the difference in sound level between the central position of DiMarzio with bridge and neck positions ...
- Overall Opinion
- - A guitar both super aesthetics (phantom finish: colors to suit the angle of illumination change from green to cherry, sky blue, purple, violet ...), nice to use, with different sounds and complementary offering a range enormous.
- Originally it is designed to work perfectly with amps mesa boogie as does John Petrucci
- The price is quite high compared to prices in USD.