Jackson SLXT

Discussion in 'Guitar Reviews' started by feraledge, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. feraledge

    feraledge Heard the Good News about Maple Fretboards? Contributor

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    I really wanted to love this guitar. It would have worked out so amazingly with a $500 price tag new and a maple neck thru body.
    The pros:
    Soloist body with an amazing neck. Super easy to play, very fast neck. There are some included upgrades; Tonepros locking tuners and decent straplocks. The finish looked solid and I had no complaint about the fret work and fretboard finish on the face of things. As far as looks go, this guitar was sick.

    The cons:
    Jackson's tuners were not good and I ditched them immediately for a set of Sperzels which is usually a first move for me on any non-trem guitar.
    Out of the box, the guitar needed serious adjustment, but I didn't necessarily fault Jackson for that, I got the guitar when it was cold out and I expect some shifting to occur.
    It comes with EMG HZs and I know there are fans of them, but I'm not one of them. I put in an EMG 81/85 set and replaced all the knobs, wiring and input which were less than great quality stock. Usually the 81/85 set can easily improve the sound quality on a guitar to a close to expected 81 sound, but the basswood wings weren't doing it justice.
    Now I've heard amazing basswood guitars, primarily on the Ibanez front, but this was not one of them. The guitar was still playable and useable, but I wouldn't have recorded with it and only would use it as a back up if necessary. I think the sound was a little dull and lacking in edge, basically what you'd expect from cheap wood.
    The real death of this guitar though is the neck and it was a super harsh buzzkill. The neck was weak. I had sanded the back of the neck down to matte finish and I don't see why so few companies don't do it out that out of the gate. With the sanded neck it felt amazing and I was keeping it as my main living room guitar for two months before I had to cut my losses and part ways.
    I was having to adjust the neck 2-3 times per week to keep it playable. That's insane. I wasn't having any weather related issues that could have caused that, it was warm and dry, but the guitar wasn't kept anywhere that would make it excessively at risk to the elements.
    Add to that mix the cheap frets and it was a no brainer, it had to go. I've been playing guitar for 20 years and have never seen frets just seem to melt off.

    Customer service:
    I'm a critical person, but I usually just suck things up. I'm rarely the guy to write a company complaining, but I felt so cheated on this beautiful looking guitar that I wrote Jackson a lengthy letter about how poor the quality was.
    A good friend of mine had another X series Jackson which helped sell me on the SLXT and he has the same neck issues. Whether this guitar is worth playing or not could easily be deterred by the slightest change in the temperature. I mentioned that the cheapness of the guitars and the weakness of the necks had to have been known when these guitars were shipped.
    The response was weak. They suggested that I take it into an authorized repair shop to have the neck inspected. The closest shop is an hour away. The truss rod was fully functional, as seen by it's regular usage.
    I was pissed.
    Now the new SLAT X series guitars have graphite reinforcement. How is it possible that they were unaware of the weak neck issues?

    Overall:
    I didn't expect this guitar to be a fitting replacement for any soloists or dinkys past, but I expected it to be solid enough that I'd want to play it around the house and keep it around. But it failed in being too high maintenance.
    I took a serious loss on this guitar when we parted ways, but while Jackson is pumping out sick looking X series guitars, it just irritates me to the bone knowing that these guitars are so shoddy. I absolutely would not recommend this guitar to a beginner, if you can't set it up regularly, it's not going to be playable for long.

    Here are some pics which will probably induce a bit of gas, but buyer beware! :wallbash:
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  2. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    What did you expect Jackson to do really? They even offered to fix a modified guitar which instantly voids the warranty.

    I would have sent it back to the dealer pronto for a replacement instead of spending a lot of time and money on a guitar you obviously feel is sub-par. :2c:
     
  3. feraledge

    feraledge Heard the Good News about Maple Fretboards? Contributor

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    I expect them not to put out instruments with serious flaws, ie weak necks. I didn't feel the guitar was sub par right off the bat. I attributed the shifty neck initially to shipping, but months later it was more than obvious that the weak necks were an issue with the series.
    I'm not sure what I wanted out of the deal, but they approached it like a defective guitar when the issue seems to be with that line. As I said, the fact that they started using graphite reinforcement with the newer x series shows that this is an issue with that line.
     
  4. feraledge

    feraledge Heard the Good News about Maple Fretboards? Contributor

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    Had I know that these issues were issues, I would have returned the guitar immediately. I attributed some of the dull sound to the HZs. Hence me writing a review warning that this turd ain't worth polishing.
     

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