For decades, Steve Vai has been known as one of the most prominent whammy bar users in the world. Why they released such an ugly hard tail model, I'll never know. The guitar has a basswood body with a maple neck, rosewood fretboard with 24 frets, special vine inlay, unique handle carved out in it, a hard tail bridge, last few frets scalloped, HSH configuration, all access neck joint, one volume, one tone and a five way switch.
I really don't like this guitar. First of all, Vai is a trem user. He's a heavy trem user at that. For him to have a signature model with a hard tail bridge just seems wrong. The bridge itself is decent, but there are better bridges out there, especially considering how ugly this particular one looks. I'm quite fond of the one on the RGA series, and I wish they would have used that. That aside, the neck itself was pretty decent. I didn't see any flaws in terms of fretwork, and the nut was cut correctly. There were no issues when it came to tuning and binding of the strings.
The guitar sounded good, and that's no surprise as it has some of my favorite pickups installed in it. The Breed in the bridge sounds nice and fat while still having that bite that's needed. It seems to really mesh with basswood guitars to give them some girth that it needs. The Breed in the neck delivers a fat, yet clear lead tone that can really sing. You can cut through the mix easily while still getting that singing lead tone. Both pickups split nicely with the middle pickup, and I loved doing the Hendrix/SRV kinda thing in the 2 and 4 positions.
The guitar sounds good. However, the bridge on this looks hideous. I still don't get why they released this model in the first place. Vai uses a trem. He has since the beginning, and he continues to use it. I guess this helps appeal to those who have issues with floyd bridges, but if that's the case, just buy a Tremol-no or something and install it.