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Thread: Which one is the best superstrat-style guitar? (Music Man Hamer, Suhr, PRS)

  1. #1

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    Which one is the best superstrat-style guitar? (Music Man Hamer, Suhr, PRS)

    Many of us love super strat style guitars, with thin neck, high output pickups and tremolo that allow to do some insane Dive-bombs. So I recorded some of my favourite guitars, to see how they hold up together. This is long video, because I was trying to show as many sounds as I could. but below the video you can find timecodes for faster navigation.




    Unfortunately I didn't have any Jackson, Kramer, Ibanez, ESP guitars at the moment, so there isn't a comprehensive superstrat battle, but I did my best. Maybe next time I'll have more guitars to try.

    Obviously, every guitar makes you play differently; strings, pickups weren't the same, so take this review with a grain of salt. My playing is not the best but im not auditioning for you band anyway


    Gear Used,
    Guitars: 1989 Hamer Californian, 2013 Suhr Modern, 2016 Music Man Majesty, 1998 Music Man Axis, 2005 PRS Custom 22
    Amps & Cabs: Diezel Herbert MK1, 4x12 Diezel Cabinet with Eminence Governor Speakers,
    Effects and other stuff: Eventide H3000 for Delay and Modulation, UAD Apollo, Suhr Reactive Load, OwnHammer IR's, Logic Pro X

  2. #2

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    The JP bridge is second to none when. It comes to dive bombs, flutters, etc.

    Very close second, the Ibanez Lo Pro Edge and other Ibanez bridges. I would place the original Floyd Rose bridges on the third place.

    Nice video, thanks for posting it!! Good work. What booster pedal do you use to boost your Diesel?

    JPXI Cardinal Red G57082
    JP12 Cherry Sugar G59225
    JP12 7 Cardinal Red F29322
    MAJESTY Glacial Frost M08083
    MAJESTY Ferrari Rosso M07113
    ARTISAN MAJESTY 7 Rosso M04775
    NOMAC MAJESTY Timeworn Matte Silver M06246
    MAJESTY Charred Silver Sparkle M08237
    MAJESTY Dargie 3 M08360

  3. #3

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    I don't use any boost
    guitar straight to amp.

  4. #4

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    Thanks for that.It has reinforced my belief that
    As the years roll on and new guitar models appear annually I have come to the conclusions that
    1.The only thing that matters is the playability
    2.The colour..Men fall in love/lust with their eyes.
    3.A cheap guitar doesn't mean it's a bad guitar it just needs set up.
    4.The Far East guitars are incredibly good value for money and give the big names a run for their money.
    5.Brand loyalty is a waste of time.
    6.String brand has absolutely no bearing on sound produced.
    7.Spending large amounts of cash on a big brand name guitar will not make you a better player.
    8.A cheap guitar properly set up and a really good amp will sound better than a really expensive guitar and a cheap amp.
    9.All humbuckers and single coils regardless of brand all sound the same when using distortion/overdrive.
    10.Your audience don't give a flying f*** what your playing they're only interested in the music.
    11. I have wasted thousands of GBP over the last 50 years and I still sound as though I am wearing woolen mittens playing on any guitar
    Last edited by Pops; 07-27-2019 at 06:22 AM.

  5. #5

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    pretty much disagree with every statement.
    1. cheap guitar is bad guitar, tried many times, they doesn't sound right, they not cut through, and player constantly searching for improvement, change pickups, buy some other booster and other BS. and what most important they don't get you inspired as much as nicely build guitar with some mojo.
    I personally want guitar that build buy some person who cares about their craft, not by some guy who just works in almost slavery condition in factory that build whatever they get paid for to build.
    2. yeah, if it doesnt look right, you not going to play it. but sometimes you just have to let thing grow on you.
    3. 4. I believe that asian made guitars, are junk, that looks like real guitar. they ok if you started, or you on budget, but when it comes to sub 1000$ budget I don't understand why many people buy brand new PRS SE, LTD, Ibanez Premium, Sterling etc. why not add couple hundreds, and go on reverb, there is so many good used guitars out there. just make offers, sometimes you can get good things at bargain price.
    5. could be, but with some brands(like old USA hamer) I have never had a bad guitar, everyone was top notch sonically. I didn't have that expirence with PRS EBMM etc. some of axises I had wasn't that good.
    6. strings do sound different. I
    7. true, but if you have money, why not, I find that nicely build guitar makes you play more, which is a good thing.
    8. amp really matters. same thing as guitars, good amp make you play more. I feel bad if im not playing for coupe days, Im addict.
    9. not in any way, by this point im thinking you troll.
    10. audience want good performance and good sound. with good gear, chances to play and sound better increases. since I started to carry my own amp, cab, and mic things my way, I never had bad sound. every venue is different, but I never had a bad sound. many times it happened to me, that after gig people come by and say complements about the sound, and ask what I was using etc.
    11. I wish my playing was as good as gear I have.
    Last edited by belensky; 07-27-2019 at 06:58 AM.

  6. #6

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    I've owned many of the so-called "superstrats".
    One requirement was that it could sound "close" to a strat...and I'm afraid that in your video, none of your axes sounds like a strat. Maybe you should condider taming the gain in another video. Thanks.
    Last edited by Magic Jason; 07-27-2019 at 10:03 AM.
    AL SSS BFR Pinkburst
    AL SSS Neptune Blue
    AL HH Starry Night
    AL HH Candy Apple Red
    AL MM90 Sparkle Turquoise
    L3 HSS Olive Gold

  7. #7

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    For the record, the term 'superstrat' refers to the body shape, not to the sound.

    JPXI Cardinal Red G57082
    JP12 Cherry Sugar G59225
    JP12 7 Cardinal Red F29322
    MAJESTY Glacial Frost M08083
    MAJESTY Ferrari Rosso M07113
    ARTISAN MAJESTY 7 Rosso M04775
    NOMAC MAJESTY Timeworn Matte Silver M06246
    MAJESTY Charred Silver Sparkle M08237
    MAJESTY Dargie 3 M08360

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by belensky View Post
    I don't use any boost
    guitar straight to amp.
    I would have guessed that you were using one. The gain is nicely saturated, that's why I asked.

    PS. The Ibanez Premium instruments are amazing guitars. They are nothing like PRS SE, Sterling etc. Especially for their price. Check one out if you find one!!
    Last edited by johnnyboogie; 07-27-2019 at 11:27 AM.

    JPXI Cardinal Red G57082
    JP12 Cherry Sugar G59225
    JP12 7 Cardinal Red F29322
    MAJESTY Glacial Frost M08083
    MAJESTY Ferrari Rosso M07113
    ARTISAN MAJESTY 7 Rosso M04775
    NOMAC MAJESTY Timeworn Matte Silver M06246
    MAJESTY Charred Silver Sparkle M08237
    MAJESTY Dargie 3 M08360

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyboogie View Post
    For the record, the term 'superstrat' refers to the body shape, not to the sound.
    I know. Yet, I always felt a super strat should, among others, be able to produce a strat type sound
    AL SSS BFR Pinkburst
    AL SSS Neptune Blue
    AL HH Starry Night
    AL HH Candy Apple Red
    AL MM90 Sparkle Turquoise
    L3 HSS Olive Gold

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyboogie View Post
    I would have guessed that you were using one. The gain is nicely saturated, that's why I asked.
    PS. The Ibanez Premium instruments are amazing guitars. They are nothing like PRS SE, Sterling etc. Especially for their price. Check one out if you find one!!

    it Mic'ed the way that amp has enough treble to make its sound aggressive as well as speaker and cab has enough aggression on it's own. my gain setting are pretty conservative, even though it does't sound like that

    with Premium or any Korean guitar, what I don't get is why should I Pay 1000 euro(im living in EU so prices may vary if you in USA) for Korean Ibanez Universe, when for 1200 in second hand market I could get Japan made Universe from Prestige series. add there couple more hundreds and you can get top notch J-Custom, guitar that you can pretty much keep for rest of your life.

    same thing with LTD ESP, in second hand market they priced so similar, why stop in half way? and not get real thing and be done with that.

    I tried couple Ibanez Premium guitars at store, nothing special. they doesn't feel right. maybe im just spoiled but I prefer to wait, save some money and to buy what I really dreaming about.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Jason View Post
    I know. Yet, I always felt a super strat should, among others, be able to produce a strat type sound
    I also agree. So a Luke then is the best Super Strat!

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Jason View Post
    I know. Yet, I always felt a super strat should, among others, be able to produce a strat type sound
    That's entirely the pickups' responsibility. Install the right pickup and you get the tweeting Fender sound. Respectively, a Fender cannot perform as a humbucker equipped guitar. I will disagree with the 'should be able to produce' =D

    There is immense room for experimentation when it comes to pickups. Something that most guitar players do not delve into. That's my impression at least.

    JPXI Cardinal Red G57082
    JP12 Cherry Sugar G59225
    JP12 7 Cardinal Red F29322
    MAJESTY Glacial Frost M08083
    MAJESTY Ferrari Rosso M07113
    ARTISAN MAJESTY 7 Rosso M04775
    NOMAC MAJESTY Timeworn Matte Silver M06246
    MAJESTY Charred Silver Sparkle M08237
    MAJESTY Dargie 3 M08360

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by belensky View Post
    it Mic'ed the way that amp has enough treble to make its sound aggressive as well as speaker and cab has enough aggression on it's own. my gain setting are pretty conservative, even though it does't sound like that

    with Premium or any Korean guitar, what I don't get is why should I Pay 1000 euro(im living in EU so prices may vary if you in USA) for Korean Ibanez Universe, when for 1200 in second hand market I could get Japan made Universe from Prestige series. add there couple more hundreds and you can get top notch J-Custom, guitar that you can pretty much keep for rest of your life.

    same thing with LTD ESP, in second hand market they priced so similar, why stop in half way? and not get real thing and be done with that.

    I tried couple Ibanez Premium guitars at store, nothing special. they doesn't feel right. maybe im just spoiled but I prefer to wait, save some money and to buy what I really dreaming about.
    I totally agree with looking for a great second-hand deal. It makes 100% sense.

    I also totally disagree about the Ibanez Premium line not being something special.

    I own 15 guitars (9x EBMM JPs, 2x Ibanez JPs, 3x USA Custom Ibanez, 1x Japan Custom Ibanez). Not long ago I bought an Ibanez Premium for 700 euros (brand new). As far as I am concerned, it has very little to nothing to envy from the above mentioned instruments. Amazing build, awesome DiMarzio pickups, epic Zero Edge floating bridge, and of course a super slim shredder's dreamed of neck. Just saying... =D

    JPXI Cardinal Red G57082
    JP12 Cherry Sugar G59225
    JP12 7 Cardinal Red F29322
    MAJESTY Glacial Frost M08083
    MAJESTY Ferrari Rosso M07113
    ARTISAN MAJESTY 7 Rosso M04775
    NOMAC MAJESTY Timeworn Matte Silver M06246
    MAJESTY Charred Silver Sparkle M08237
    MAJESTY Dargie 3 M08360

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnnyboogie View Post
    I also totally disagree about the Ibanez Premium line not being something special.
    does Premium cut like your EBMM or J Custom? I mean let's say you playing gig, which guitar work's the best and sounds right EBMM, J-Custom, or Premium.

    which guitar is easiest to record? meaning there is less EQ tweaks need to be done to make guitar sound right?

    with which guitar you tend to tweak amp knobs more often? EBMM, J-Custom, Premium

    does that premium sustains as good as EBMM?

    does that premium has some particular voice of it's own?

    which guitar you tend to grab most of the time for practising, noodling or songwriting EBMM, J-Custom, Premium.

    did that premium inspires you as much as EBMM or J-Custom? did you start to play more after you purchase premium?

    which guitar would you sell last? EBMM, J-Custom or Premium?

    which one build by craftsman who cares about their art and probably play guitar himself, and which one build by assembly line type of worker who there 8AM to 5PM

    which guitar would you like to keep as family treasure, pass to your kids etc?


    I'm not trying to sound as some kind of snob or elitist, my whole point is that I would rather be patient, wait, save up a bit more money and buy something that I'm really dreaming about instead of something that I would sell after anyway because it isn't truly what I want.

    I saw many guys with asian guitars, and it's very common that they trying to persuade themselves and people around that that their LTD, Ibanez Premium Sterling, etc, as good as EBMM, Suhr, Hamer, Gibson Custom Etc. same thing with Kemper, Axe FX or helix guys, they always looking for perfect patch constantly tweaking presets, to make it sound closer to real amp. what is the point of playing this Stockholm syndrome game?

    I played in band with guy who was far better player than me, but he went cheap about his equipment and he constantly had troubles with sound on stage, he didn't cut through or he was way to loud, band didn't sound right, etc.
    I newer had any troubles like that. I always heard myself, no matter what, why? I didn't went cheap as far as guitar, cables, amp, tubes, cabinet, speakers, mic placement goes.
    Every little thing matter and in the end of the day it's not that expensive if you think about it in long term perspective.


    P.S I personally find it funny, Premium is a mid-priced line of guitars, but for some reason they call it premium? what so premium about them?

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pops View Post
    Thanks for that.It has reinforced my belief that
    As the years roll on and new guitar models appear annually I have come to the conclusions that
    1.The only thing that matters is the playability
    2.The colour..Men fall in love/lust with their eyes.
    3.A cheap guitar doesn't mean it's a bad guitar it just needs set up.
    4.The Far East guitars are incredibly good value for money and give the big names a run for their money.
    5.Brand loyalty is a waste of time.
    6.String brand has absolutely no bearing on sound produced.
    7.Spending large amounts of cash on a big brand name guitar will not make you a better player.
    8.A cheap guitar properly set up and a really good amp will sound better than a really expensive guitar and a cheap amp.
    9.All humbuckers and single coils regardless of brand all sound the same when using distortion/overdrive.
    10.Your audience don't give a flying f*** what your playing they're only interested in the music.
    11. I have wasted thousands of GBP over the last 50 years and I still sound as though I am wearing woolen mittens playing on any guitar
    1. Completely disagree. Sound and looks matter to most people, as well as playability.
    2. Disagree to a certain extent. Color is important, but the overall shape is a big factor in a guitars looks.
    3. Disagree. A well setup cheap guitar can still sound like crap because of the cheap pickups. Pickups are a huge factor in sound and tone.
    4. Disagree to a certain extent. They are well made (at least many of them) and they do give good value for the price. There are differences between the Far East axes and the American made stuff though, no doubt about it.
    5. Wtf is wrong with brand loyalty?
    6. I believe on distortion the sound differences from brand to brand are not very noticeable at all. Clean sounds may be more revealing.
    7. True
    8. Yes, it will sound better, but it absolutely doesn't feel better, and feel is possibly more important than sound.
    9. Dead wrong. If you can't hear the differences that is your loss imo. They are positively there. Even from one humbucker to another they are there, let alone a humbucker to single coil. I have several guitars with different pickups. Every single one sounds different on clean, edge of break-up, or high gain.
    10. Wtf? If people don't care what other artists are playing why are there so many signature model guitars in the world? Completely illogical statement.
    11. No comment.

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