1. '84 Strat (When i was 14, my teacher played every strat in the store and told me to buy this one - he was right)
2. PRS Swamp Ash Special (Best neck in the world, and very versatile)
3. Pantera 350MA (This is the new one of the bunch, but is clearly a great guitar. And I have to say it is very close to the PRS, but the PRS neck is a bit better)
3.5 Pantera 390 (not in the top 3 becuase the others are just so good, but this is real close)
2. Vantage VA900
3. see above!!
Simply because I got it new in 1980 and gigged it without backup for 25+ years and it never once let me down and is tonally the equal of any guitar I have ever played.
Seriously, though, No. 2 would be my Electra Phoenix X195 - because it's a Spectrum with a weird pickup arrangement, and No. 3, dunno, but probably my lapsteel becasue it has outrageously good tone and gain; it's a late 50's/early 60's Made in NZ Commodore that I used quite a bit, "back in the day"... tones you cannot get any other way!
- Senior Member
- Number of posts : 6291
Age : 64
Location : Mount Hunter, NSW, Australia
Registration date : 2008-04-08
1. 1964 Gibson ES-330TD. My first 'real' guitar, bought new. It has the neck that says "Welcome home, where have you been?" And the P90 sound is un-touchable. Gorgeous too.
Now it gets tougher. Number two has to be a Mats. I have several that are worthy of consideration, all amazing players. But I still keep coming back to my trusty...
2. 1985 Westone Spectrum ST. Again my first real solid body guitar, purchased new. I've gigged it, recorded it and recently put in a set of MMK45's to replace the original lack lustre pseudo-UBC pups. It's partly sentimental, but it earns its place honestly with that amazing neck and overall playability comfort. Always feels "right".
Third choice is damn near impossible to pick. I have several, including a recently purchased Vintage brand Lemon Drop which I can't put down, and of course the Thunder IA. But the choice again comes down to a couple of oldies. Excluding the sentiment factor and concentrating again on playability and comfort the winner is...
3. Ovation Collectors Edition 1984 It's a shallow bowl so it's easy to handle, work great on stage, stays in tune, and is beautiful to look at to boot! The neck is wonderfully smooth and fast and plays like an electric. Just a terrific guitar for my rhythm work.
"A little song. A little dance. A little seltzer down your pants." -Chuckles the Clown
GUITARS : https://legend.barryeames.com/guitars.html
MUSIC/PIX/VIDEOS: https://getback.barryeames.com (including Spectrum ST)
3. 1982 Peavey T-45
Had nothing to do one day and just sat in a music shop playing every bass in reach. The T-45 sounded just phenomenal and I had to bring it home. It's big and heavy but the tone is fantastic. The neck is also surprisingly fast despite being the widest 4-string I own! I can play much faster lines on this than on thinner necked basses.
2. 1985 The Rail(s)
I have three Rails, but the two 85s correct the problems of the 84 and are so much better for it. The tone is surprisingly good for the lack of body, the super light weight means you can play for hours, and the neck is very comfortable and easy to get along with. Upper fret access is unmatched. Sliding to and/or from the 24th fret is effortless. Bonus points: Everyone loves them!
1. 1980 Electra Phoenix X640
This bass mixes the monstrous tone of the T-45, the light weight of the Rails, and the neck profile that the Spectrum/Phoenix line is so famous for. I have never played a better sounding bass than this. I can't get enough of the tone this beast provides. All the low-end punch you could ever want, and then some! It's also amazingly lightweight, not as light as the Rails but very nearly so. Not sure how Uncle Mat pulled that one off. And the neck profile... well, I know the Phoenix/Spectrum guitars are known for their necks, and the basses are no exception. Extremely comfortable.
- Number of posts : 1133
Age : 34
Location : Gainesville, FL
Registration date : 2008-08-03
OK this is what I'm feeling at the moment (subject to change without notice),
1. 2002 Fender Cyclone II - I just find myself picking this one up first lately. I first saw one in a catalogue 9 years ago and fell for it instantly, but I never thought I'd ever get one. Found mine in Crap Converters for £200, I've never seen another locally and I knew it was probably my only chance to nab one! It's Mexican made with a 24" scale neck, Mustang shaped body in Daphne Blue with a racing stripe, it's fitted with a Strat trem and three Jaguar pickups in a white pearloid scratchplate. Love it.
2. 1983 Westone Thunder I - I got this partly stripped from Fleabay. I rebuilt it, fitted it with a pair of Seymour Duncan P-Rails then added an overcomplicated switching system to make it all work. It's got some cool sounds and feels great to play, as with most Mats made stuff it feels indestructable! This sounds sad but I end up just looking at this thing sometimes, the body wood has an unusual amount of figuring and flame in it for this model. I'd be gutted if this ever got damaged or lost, it's irreplaceable in my eyes.
3. 2004 Squier Thinline Tele HH - I end up sitting in front of the TV strumming this one, a lot! It's part of the "Master Series" range with a set neck, strat hardtail and an LP style control set up. The neck is just amazing, the edge of the fretboard is rounded for comfort and the frets have been polished and finished properly. The build quality is great and did I mention it's made in China (so much for Chinese crap!). I upgraded the pickups from Duncan Designed items to proper Seymour's, a '59 bridge and a Jazz neck, it really sustains when it's plugged in!
The problem with all this is there is too many to choose from. ("Maybe I should have gone with the Danelectro U2, or Hohner 12 string Tele. Aria CS250, Gretsch Pro-Jet..........Peavey Horizon II! No, no what about the Ibanez Roadstar II......erm......damn..." )
- Senior Member
- Number of posts : 640
Age : 46
Location : Newcastle Upon Tyne, U.K.
Registration date : 2009-05-18
1. fender set neck usa tele. (sold to gruhn's)
2. ernie ball axis super sport. (ebayed away)
3 westie prestige 250( still have!)
- Senior Member
- Number of posts : 418
Age : 60
Location : WAY too close to New Orleans!
Registration date : 2008-07-29
1. 1987 vintage Fender '72 reissue Stratocaster. Cream with a rosewood (slim and fast) neck, three Schaller 'hot rails style' pickups. Me and my baby have been together nearly 24 years and she still yurns me on!
2. 1984 vintage Westone Thunder 1 in light oak. My first electric, bought back in december 1985, I learned the ropes on this hot number, and she has been a faithfull sidekick ever since. Can hold her own against any Les Paul I have thus far encountered.
3. Epiphone Les Paul Gold Top. Bought off fleabay a couple of years ago, not sure of the age but only a few years old (post 2000). Looks great, sounds great, plays great. Job done, 'nuff said!
Obi Wan Russell
- Registered Member
- Number of posts : 12
Age : 53
Location : Southampton, UK
Registration date : 2009-01-13
2. Warmoth Custom - carved top VW body (think EB/MM Axis but with a carved top - because that's what it is) mahogany with 5/8" flame maple cap finished by Warmoth in vintage 2-tone sunburst front and back (more amber than yellow), Wilkinson 2-post tremolo like Warmoth sells, Warmoth short scale conversion boat neck mahogany and Macassar ebony with 6150 frets (finished in Tru-oil), Seymour Duncan JB in the bridge and a bridge Jazz model in the neck position. This guitar is very light and small - the body is tiny and with a short-scale conversion - it's almost a miniature guitar...And it sounds GREAT! I tried it with SD Custom 5, Custom, '59, and nothing cuts through like the JB - especially through the Dual Rec! It plays like a custom and the thick boat neck is very comfortable if not particularly fast. I bolted it together myself and paid Jason at World Music to level and dress the frets. I use this guitar for rock but the neck pickup is marvelous and very strat-like so it works for blues too.
3. Warmoth Custom Strat, lightweight swamp ash body flame maple laminate top with heel contour finished by Warmoth in vintage 2-tone sunburst front and black back (yellow - not amber), long scale Warmoth Strat standard thin neck hurricane birdseye and Kingwood with 6150 frets (finished in Tru-oil), vintage-style tremolo, Seymour Duncan vintage staggered pickups. What can I say about this one - it plays and sounds like the custom instrument that it is. You can get this level of instrument other places - Fender custom shop, Tom Anderson, Nash, etc. - but I bolted it together myself and paid Joe at Corner Music to level and dress the frets. I use this guitar for blues but it would work for Rock too with a lil '59 in the bridge - but then it wouldn't exactly be a strat so I choose to leave it as a strat.
For some reason, new guitars hanging on the racks at music stores don't interest me anymore. I want either something from the Golden Age of Japanese guitar making or a new custom.
Of course there are some runners up - Jackson SL-3 neckthru soloist from Japan (wish I still had it), Charvel Model 5 neckthru from Japan (still have it), Westone Rainbow II (still have it), a beat up Westone Pantera X-390CB with Bendmaster (still have it), Westone Pantera X-300, Jackson DK-2 Dinky.
- Senior Member
- Number of posts : 583
Registration date : 2008-04-08
1. Yamaha FG 75 acoustic, red label '70's. Gets played everyday, it's just there all the time. Sounds soooo.. sweet.
2. Westone Thunder II passive with PEQ controlls '82. Lovely.
3. Strat '62 jap, sings like a bird. Will give any US one a good lickin'
The rest, which is many, are not to hand.
My choices might be offensive to some but here goes.
1 & 2/ Aria Pro II TA-100 and TA70. So close a call to me that it is impossible to say. In recent yrs i´ve truly become a latina arse junkie. The tone,the playability and ability to controlled feedback simply blows me away.
3d. My tan Daion MkXX.
..and just like above i´ll ad a.....
3,5- The LS700 transition of mine. Best Lespaul i´ve ever played,and i´ve owned a few over the yrs TBH- being a LP guy at heart.
- Hero, Legend, and all round good guy
- Number of posts : 192
Age : 58
Registration date : 2009-02-27