« Not that versatile »Published on 10/11/11 at 16:05
The fretwork on this was average, and it was about on par with what you'd expect to find from Fender around this time. The rosewood was very light in color, and it really needed to be oiled. If you're going to oil fretboards, look into using something like Fret Doctor or the equivalent. Lemon Oil will just dry it out again, and it doesn't really penetrate like Fret Doctor does. The hard tail on this actually makes this guitar not sound like a normal strat. You lose that resonance chamber and that extra reverb. It's something that a few people like, but if you're a standard strat guy, you might not like it. I know Eric Clapton didn't like the hard tail bridges on his prototype models.
The guitar only has one pickup, and it's the Seymour Duncan Invader. This pickup is super high output, and it has tons of bass. The guitar itself didn't really resonate quite that much, and the Invader helped pick up the slack in the output department. You could slam the front end of an amp and start playing death metal with this, and I'm not really sure how Tom was able to play his pop/punk stuff in Blink 182 with this guitar. Like I said, it's very high output, and it's far from my first choice when it comes to his genre of music. The lack of versatility in this guitar is very disappointing, and the one tone it does do, it's not even that great of a tone.
If you're looking for a versatile guitar, I recommend looking elsewhere. The one pickup configuration with one of the worst Duncans ever made makes this guitar one worth avoiding unless you're a big Blink 182 fan. The rest of the guitar is average, and nothing about this makes me want to run out and buy it. You're much better off buying an HSS strat and getting the extra versatility out of it instead of getting one of these.