New user and NGD - Jackson Soloist SL7

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by AndiKravljaca, Jun 1, 2017.

  1. AndiKravljaca

    AndiKravljaca SS.org Regular

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    Hi guys,

    This year, after 20 years of playing guitar, and ten years making videos on YouTube, I wanted to do something special with a guitar, as far as artwork. Something inspired by a piece of art given to me after a show by a fan who happens to be an artist.

    Needless to say, to make this possible, it was finally time for me to purchase another electric guitar. Being a huge fan of my 2002 Jackson DK-2, I naturally gravitated toward Jackson. This time, though, I decided to expand my musical range and dimension by purchasing a 7 string guitar - the Jackson Pro Series Soloist SL7 to be exact. Which means I'm making an account on this forum!

    Here she is:

    [​IMG]

    The guitar was delivered to my house the other day, and came with a Fazley guitar maintenance kit free of charge courtesy of Bax Music, so thanks for that, guys. I got a strap lock with it too, which is really nice.

    PROS:

    The oiled finish on the neck is sublime. It feels very silky and natural to play. The width of the neck, though different to what I am used to in the DK-2, is still not disconcerting as I thought it would be (I've filled in twice for guitarists who used seven strings, and played an LTD seven string and an Ibanez Universe, and I remember being very afraid and feeling comically like a beginner). It really is something which you pick up in a matter of hours and it doesn't feel unnatural at all anymore.

    The satin black finish is really fantastic, and extends to the headstock, giving it a nice matte black menacing sort of finish.

    The fretboard and fret work is really high quality - no need to fear MII as far as I'm concerned. The frets are seated really nicely, the locking nut looks well installed, the inlays are really nicely fitted and are made of what basically looks like brushed metal - a really cool idea for an inlay and set of nicely against the ebony of the fretboard, which is a deep, deep dark brown.

    The Floyd Rose 2000 system is great, I've put it through a few initial paces and I'd have to say I prefer it to the JT-580LP system on the DK-2 so far.

    The timbre of the sound the guitar makes is really nice. There's a crunch combined with a good amount of sustain which I've really been enjoying.

    The coil split function is a real eye-opener for me, I've never had this before and I see myself using it a lot in the future. The switch is also really tight and sturdily built, it feels very dampened in its motion.

    CONS:

    The pickups are a good deal more quiet than my DK-2 aftermarket ones. The DK has a Duncan Parallel Axis Distortion Trembucker in the bridge, and a Scorcher in the neck. In comparison to this, I expected the seven string Distortion set in the SL7 to sound about equal in volume to the pickups I put in the DK-2. Sadly, the neck pickup sounds a lot more trebly and brittle, and the bridge pickup a lot more hollow and quiet than I'd have liked. The actual sound is good, but the output deficit means I'm having to adjust to playing the guitar harder and working it more than I have with the Dinky. I thought I'd adjust the problem by raising the pickups closer to the strings, but since they're direct mounted... I can't.

    The volume knob is at an obvious angle from the body. Not a deal breaker by any means, but enough to upset me for a brand new instrument.

    That headstock is HUGE! So big that it won't fit inside a case meant for a six string Dinky or Soloist. But man does it ever look GREAT!

    I've posted an unboxing and first impression video where I talk about all of these things, here:



    And a thorough sound runthrough where I do everything from raw signals, cleans, crunches and leads to comparisons to my DK-2:



    Enjoy!
     
  2. cardinal

    cardinal SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the review. I keep thinking of picking one of these up.
     
  3. eaeolian

    eaeolian Pictures of guitars I don't even own anymore! Super Moderator

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    Hmm. It does sound like they're too far away, though the Distortion is pretty bright. You should still be able to raise them, even as direct mount - my direct mount Jackson 7s have springs under the pickup legs.
     
  4. AndiKravljaca

    AndiKravljaca SS.org Regular

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    Not a problem, it's my pleasure. Let me know if you want me to try out anything specific you might be wondering about for you.

    No, in the end it sounds fine, I'm adjusting to it and honestly that DK-2 was modded back in my 'ALL THE GAIN' days anyway, so it's hardly something to have a hangup over. It's mostly noticeable when you play clean. Compared to the PA/TB2b it has a really clear and glassy clean tone which I wasn't expecting given the mahogany body. Obviously as you throw gain on it everything gets compressed out and by the time I do the last comparison with the Dinky on a ridiculously overdriven Rectifier preset, you can't make out any difference at all. But in the clean tones it's really crazy how different they sound - and how much more of the chorus effect the Soloist picks up. I wonder why that is.

    As for the pickups, I tried to noodle around with a screwdriver but trust me, as I undo the screws (and this goes for the neck and bridge pickup both), the screw comes out of the body but the pickup doesn't come with it. They appear to be bolted right into the wood. I'll remove them completely and have a look-see if there's some neoprene foam under there.
     
  5. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the review, congrats!
     
  6. knet370

    knet370 SS.org Regular

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    nice omen pc you got there. :)
     
  7. AndiKravljaca

    AndiKravljaca SS.org Regular

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    Ha! Thanks a lot! I love that thing, I guarantee you.
     
  8. eaeolian

    eaeolian Pictures of guitars I don't even own anymore! Super Moderator

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    I'll bet it's the springs ringing more. Do you have foam on the springs in the DK?

    That, sadly, sounds like something the current Pro series would do. :(
     
  9. Mary11

    Mary11 SS.org Regular

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    Thanks a lot for sharing the post. It was so interesting.
     

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