Washburn N4 Vintage
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Washburn N4 Vintage

N4 Vintage, STC-Shaped Guitar from Washburn in the Nuno Bettencourt series.

vince_lebowski 03/25/2008

Washburn N4 Vintage : vince_lebowski's user review

5

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Made in the USA Washburn Custom Shop in Boston
exact replica of the N4 Nuno Bettencourt used by
2006 model under the hand of Nuno back (No. 0,601,006, the sixth model produced in January 2006)
Aged solid alder body
mechanical fittings aged
maple neck with ebony fingerboard 22 frets
Bill Lawrence L500 bridge pickup ®
neck pickup Seymour Duncan ® '59
A 3-position selector, 1 volume
Floyd Rose ® Original tremolo license
junction sleeve / body Stephens ® extended cutaway 5-vis license
head / neck adverse Luthier
inverted head 14 "
Grover ® 18:1
Buzz Feiten Tuning System ™

UTILIZATION

The game is very instinctive and not disconcerting at first tests of this instrument.
The neck is very smooth, very flat and the ebony fingerboard is perfect, very easy to play. Access to acute is really great with the cutting Stephens ® extended cutaway. This guitar is very light and very good ergonomics. The different sounds are fairly easy to obtain, the settings is very limited (no tone control direct, a single switch). Attention, despite appearances, this guitar is very versatile.

SOUNDS

This guitar is perfect for my style of music (Hard Rock), but is very versatile for all styles when they rule according to his amp.
I play with an amp Hughes & Kettner Triamp MkII ® (EL34) coupled to a baffle Marshall ® 1960TV (100 W Celestion ® greenbacks) and Triamp MkI 1997 (6L6) coupled to baffle H & K Triamp TC412 Original (100 W Celestion ® greenbacks).
the main feature of the N4 vintage sound is very rugged and very incisive.

The sounds are clear examples: highly crystalline for three different positions.
The distorted sounds are amazing: very consistent and impressive power in the gain. There is no supersaturation even when the gain of the amp is cranked ...

Pickup position (Bill Lawrence), the attack is very straightforward, powerful and full of harmonics. The sound is rich and incisive. In his clear, the game is very crystalline and slamming. In full, the presence is breathtaking (the harmonics very present) and the grain easily adjustable with the volume.
The bridge position is very interesting with the grain of a rare (very low with medium plus), approximating a Gibson pickups mounted with Burstbucker II and III (bridge). In this case, saturation is very ample typical vintage, with a nice grain very incisive. The clean sound is also very interesting, with a balance bass / treble, full of harmonics.
Position neck pickup (Seymour Duncan), sound more serious and mellow is very interesting. This position allows clear sound further but with enough of an attack in the treble when you press his game in full, this position is very interesting with lots of round (but a lot of presence) and a more linear and less cutting than for the other two positions.

Its versatility is achieved by adjusting the settings of the volume knob, to vary the tone (and saturation), plus the volume (gain pickups are very high output).

OVERALL OPINION

I use it for a year now and my pleasure to play does not go away, quite the contrary ...
I have nothing but positives to point out about this guitar.
I tried many different guitars to date but that N4 is one of those I was most impressed by its quality of finish (even aged), exacerbated by its playability, and especially by his very powerful but very clear even at a very high gain. We must not forget his versatility (although there appear to be) and originality of sound that knows how to stand out from all the guitars that you can try today.
I also have a Washburn N2 Nuno Bettencourt Signature Model for over 8 years and N4 relics is really exceptional and incomparable next.
The price / quality ratio may be its weak point, but having an instrument "signature model" with a flawless finish and such a level of quality is also its price ...
Today, this choice I would do without hesitation.

plus:
mounting a push-pull switch for using the single coil pickups in the configuration of the 3 positions (bridge, bridge and neck) and have 6 different sounds at your fingertips.
The position taken by the less powerful but much more aggressive, responsible for acute, recalling the sound of guitars of the 60s.
The most interesting in this configuration is the very aggressive distorted sounds, ideal for his type even more vintage! In this case, please push the gain higher than in normal position, you will take the quintessential single coil screaming as it should.
Be careful, do not hesitate to invest in a push-pull high bill (for my part I had a gibson custom part) because those are far from cheap to live up with this guitar. I paid the price by trying to save a few euros and I had to buy another, do not make moral economy candle-end, it is not worth the trouble ...
the push-pull Cheap bring a breath unpleasant and slightly distort the sound of the N4 in the normal position. It's barely noticeable but really a shame to lose the high quality of the sound of this guitar is a piece of goldsmith.
Assembly and welding are also very important to maintain a perfect sound like the original. Do not do anything if you do not know it, there are a lot of work in terms of re-wiring and soldering especially in the mass, it is essential to know what you are doing and why you are doing .. .