Pending NGD: Legator Ghost GHFB7

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by Stozy, Nov 22, 2018.

  1. Stozy

    Stozy SS.org Regular

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    Found this guitar at half-price (among others that were also heavily marked down) on their website. I’ve never owned a fanned-fret, headless, or even 7-string guitar, and I’ve seen some very mixed reviews regarding Legator’s QC, so this may prove to be a multifaceted adventure. But a brand new $900 guitar for $450? Worth the risk? Anybody have any experience with this company/model to share?

    I should be receiving the guitar on Wednesday. I’ll update with my findings.
     
  2. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    good score dude.
    What finish did you go for?

    Will look forward to the NGD thread!!
     
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  3. Stozy

    Stozy SS.org Regular

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    I went with the washed black. It is a pretty sick-looking guitar, and despite the obvious reasons for skepticism, I’m pretty excited.
     
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  4. lewis

    lewis SS.org Regular

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    oh sounds sweet.

    And defo man!. Dont let some horror stories curb your New guitar excitement!.

    I read the same thing about Harley Benton fan frets and both mine were solid as hell before I sold them. (AX8 purchase and nothing more - If I had the money already I would have kept both)
     
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  5. KnightBrolaire

    KnightBrolaire hardtail crusader

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    RIP your money
     
  6. Stozy

    Stozy SS.org Regular

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    Perhaps, I guess we’ll see.
     
  7. cip 123

    cip 123 SS.org Regular

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    Good bit of info on here and YouTube on why they should generally be avoided.
     
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  8. vortex_infinium

    vortex_infinium SS.org Regular

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    Hope you get a good one OP. Ghosts are one of their cooler models. Probably because it doesn't use their headstock lol. Before I picked up something else I was seriously on the fence about a Ghost but couldn't justify the price:risk.

    There seems to be a lot more problems with the entry level budget instruments vs the higher priced ones. But the QC issues are there. I've posted before on how outright bad and disgustingly crusty their own website photos look for some models. Also makes you kinda wonder why they're clearing out so many instruments at such a low cut in price.

    Some of their stuff is kinda cool. I just wouldn't pay 1k+ USD for a project guitar that's most likely gonna need work, or have the risk of being outright unplayable. But those same instruments for half price ehhh, I'd still buy an Agile or a Indo Harley Benton (is that where the non China ones are made?). That being said if I was really interested in one, for that price I'd be willing to take the online shopping risk knowing what I might get.
     
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  9. Dyster

    Dyster SS.org Regular

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    my TE-7 fanfret is made in vietnam
     
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  10. Rollandbeast

    Rollandbeast SS.org Regular

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    I almost bought that guitar ! but with legator QC history I ended up changing my mind and picked up a ormsby goliath lol
    hopefully you get a good one keep us updated !
     
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  11. Stozy

    Stozy SS.org Regular

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    Perry makes some truly beautiful instruments, dude, so congrats on that. I’ve never heard a bad word about him or his work. A little out of my price range this time around, though.

    I’m staying optimistic. A minor flaw or two in the finish–a trip to my tech to file some fret ends, if need be–won’t ruin the purchase for me, especially considering the ridiculous 50% discount. But if it’s downright, irreparably unplayable, I’ll be sure to put that on blast here, too. You know, after I find some deathcore kid on Reverb to sell it to, that is.

    When the time comes, I’ll put it under the microscope, provide pics and commentary. Thanks for the input.
     
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  12. BusinessMan

    BusinessMan SS.org Regular

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    I’m looking forward to an ngd for this. I want to grab the same guitar but 8 string version. However, I’m super skeptical though given their rep
     
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  13. yellowv

    yellowv Turd Ferguson Contributor

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    As bad a rep as they have I’m thinking about taking a shot. $499 for a fanned fret, headless 8 is hard to pass up.
     
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  14. diagrammatiks

    diagrammatiks SS.org Regular

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    Ya there’s a price where these seem maybe worth it and 400-500 would hit that sweet spot for me.
     
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  15. BusinessMan

    BusinessMan SS.org Regular

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    I would be ok with it if it had some finish Imperfections (not the biggest deal to me) and some rough fret ends as you could get that taken care of. I more concerned about playability and overall quality
     
  16. yellowv

    yellowv Turd Ferguson Contributor

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    You get it yet? I’m anxious to hear if it’s decent. I am very intrigued by a headless multiscale 8 for $499. However I sent them a message like 4 days ago just to test the waters with their CS. They didn’t even reply. Never a good sign when a company isn’t even helpful before you buy from them.
     
  17. Stozy

    Stozy SS.org Regular

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    Update: I got the guitar yesterday, took a little time to play and examine it before posting.
    Excuse the shitty iPhone pics.

    It came via FedEx in a well-protected cardboard box, with plenty of foam padding, bubble wrap, etc. Included was a very nice—and honestly unexpected—backpack-style gig bag, with plenty of pocket space for accessories, and a small bag of hex keys.

    She's a pretty stunning instrument, in my opinion. This Korean-made guitar typically comes with a maple fretboard, but I was stoked to see it offered with purple heart when I ordered it. It's a darker purple heart, for sure, but still quite distinguishable from your everyday rosewood, which I like. The finish over the ash body is black and gray, sort of resembling a Kiesel raw tone finish. There are a few very minor imperfections in it, but nothing you'll notice unless you're seriously looking for them. The silver Legator logo above the neck pocket looks well done, too (a point of concern I'd seen in a YouTube video).

    The neck is a 5-piece walnut/maple bolt-on, and the profile feels really nice to me, especially after spending the last few years playing a pretty chunky Schecter. The cutaway and neck heel are decent for upper fret accessibility; I've admittedly played better, but I've definitely played worse. There don't appear to be any knocks or other damage to the back of the neck, and it's very smoothly sanded with no finish. It's a 25.5 to 27-inch multiscale, with the 9th fret acting as the perpendicular starting point for the fan. It takes a bit of getting used to, having never played one before, but the balanced string tension feels great.

    The nut and fretwork, however, is problematic. The nut was advertised as bone, and I'm scratching my head trying to figure out what kind of velociraptor they dug up to source black plastic. And speaking of scratches, holy shit. The nut not only appears to have some heavy gouges between the slots (like, put the bottle down when you're filing nut slots, little Korean dude), but also has a small chunk of it missing in the corner. Not sure which QC wizard saw that and said "well... fuck it, ship it!". I'll probably be replacing it with some Tusq in the very near future. Additionally, the locking mechanism has a small scuff in the black paint, somebody managed to scratch the edge of the fretboard (where the headstock would normally be) when they strung it up (smooth one, buddy!), and there a few small scratches on the sides of the fretboard. I'm not hearing a lot of fret buzz, but as you approach the 12th fret and beyond, the action is pretty awful. You know what's fun? Attempting whole-note bends and having your fingers actually slip beneath the string above the one you're bending. And if you look at the neck pocket area from the side, you can see why. I'll be shimming that this weekend. And after that, I'm going to have to bust out the fret rocker and black marker to determine if this thing needs a proper fret-leveling. The frets themselves are nickel, and honestly pretty badly finished. They're riddled with scratches, and though they're not cutting my fingers, they will definitely be crowned again, rounded, and polished to a high shine, before I'm done.

    The in-house hardware isn't terrible, but nothing special. It comes with a pretty standard volume and tone knob, with a blade-style 3-way switch. The bridge is comfortable enough for sweeping and excessive palm-muting. Tuning stability seems ok so far, but it's only been one day. I haven't bothered toying with the intonation yet; doesn't seem worth my time until I get the action issues sorted. It isn't noticeably off. The control cavity has a recessed, black plastic back plate, employing a sheet of metal tape for shielding. I was befuddled when I removed it, and discovered that this was where the shielding ended. I can't quite tell, but I don’t see any shielding in the pickup cavities, either. I feel at the $900 price point a proper Faraday cage should probably be a thing. But yeah, I guess I can do that myself, too.

    I have mixed feelings about the in-house pickups. I've been playing the classic EMG 81/85 buttcore starter kit for longer than I should admit in public, so the cleans on these passives sound great to me. But when playing with some overdrive, they seem to lack articulation, especially on the low end. It could be my amp settings, but there's definitely some mud. I'll have to play it some more, but there's a high probability that I swap them for something top-shelf (and freaking expensive, since nobody seems to be selling slanted pickups without a custom order) in the future.

    In summary, I would never pay $900 for this guitar, in this condition. If I had paid full-price for it, I would be raising hell with Legator's customer service department right now instead of writing this little review. I won't quite call it a "B-stock" instrument, but this is practically Guitar Center-floor-model-type bullshit that could have been easily avoided had a few builders and handlers simply been more careful schlepping it from station to station. All my bitching aside, however, at $450 I'm actually quite fond of it, and I'm definitely going to keep it. I love the aesthetic. The neck and ergonomics feel fantastic, and I'm still having a lot of fun playing it. It's not something I can gig with today, and it's going to take some work and a little more cash to get it where I want it, but once I'm done making the aforementioned repairs and augmentations, this is going to easily be my favorite guitar, and I think, in my case, the risk was worth it. Be warned though, I was lucky that the defects on this guitar were fairly minimal and within my ability to repair. With QC like this, your experience may differ and I'd take that into account before ordering, especially if you're about to pay full price.

    BeautyH.jpg
    Backshot.jpg Fretboard scratches.jpg Neck joint.jpg No shielding.jpg Nut scratches.jpg Nut.jpg Paint flaw.jpg Scratch.jpg Fret scratches.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2018
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  18. yellowv

    yellowv Turd Ferguson Contributor

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    Ok yeah that looks like the kind of shit they are known for. Nothing that bad for half price, but nothing great. As for the wiring that is shielding paint in the cavity. Your not going to see any better shielding in $1000 Korean guitars.
     
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  19. RiksRiks

    RiksRiks ERG Player Wannabe

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    Congrats, I actually dig the fretboard, and I'm not a big fan of dark colored fretboards.
    Seems like it would make a good work horse after some adjustments, right?
    Also, look at the bright side, your 24th fret side dots are better than this E-II (priced at about 2000 USD I believe?)

    [​IMG]
     
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  20. Ordacleaphobia

    Ordacleaphobia Can only power chord

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    Wow. That E-II is amazingly bad. I can't believe they shipped that.
     
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