Charvel Model 6 Reviews 5

I purchased this guitar used from Majestic Music in Greensboro, NC for $400. I'd really like to have a Jackson USA made Soloist, but the Charvel has a very similar feel, and I was able to get it for a fraction of the price of the Soloist.

This is a 1986 model with a solid poplar body and neck-thru construction with the trademark pointed headstock. It has a Jackson humbucker and two Jackson stacked humbuckers (single coil sound without the hum), a Kahler tremolo (after 1986 they switched to Floyd Rose), and a 24-fret bound rosewood fretboard with sharkfin pearl inlays. There is an individual toggle switch for each pickup, which allows you to use any combination of the three pickups (very cool) including all three at once. There is a single volume knob and tone knob, as well as a knob for controlling the active mid-boost which operates on a nine volt battery. This is great for going from a good punchy rhythm tone to a full-bodied lead tone. There is no noise at any pickup/control setting. If you like to shred, the slim neck shape and low action make this guitar a great choice. I tested it in the store without plugging into an amp and knew right away that I had to buy it, not only because of the feel, but also because of the way it resonated. A good electric should sound good unplugged, and this one does. Plugged in, it has a bright quality, without being twangy. I play through a Digitech RP2000, and between the capabilities of that unit and the pickup combinations of the Charvel, I can get excellent sounds ranging from heavy metal to cool jazz.

I don't really have any dislikes concerning this instrument. In a perfect world I would prefer an ebony fretboard and a later model that has a Floyd Rose with a locking nut (the Kahler string lock is actually behind the nut instead of at the nut), but in a perfect world I would also be able to play like Steve Vai.

This guitar is made with quality materials, and I haven't found any real workmanship problems. The finish is very durable and attractive. I was fortunate enough to have a tour of the Jackson USA custom shop in Ontario,CA last year. While this guitar (made in Japan I believe) doesn't quite match up to the quality I saw there, it's not too far off considering the price difference (the guy who gave me the tour actually owns a Charvel Model 6)!

I love this guitar! I also have a Gibson Les Paul Standard which is special to me, but since I acquired the Charvel, the Paul doesn't see much action. I would highly recommend this guitar. I've seen some on Ebay for prices between $300 and $400. A bargain for a neck-thru shred machine!

Gary W. rated this unit 5 on 2003-01-30.

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