NGD - Aristides 070 Proto #2, video inside

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by Fred the Shred, Nov 28, 2013.

  1. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    So, while I was skimming my Ask.fm and answering people's questions one day, one particular link caught my eye, namely a dude asking me if I had any thoughts pertaining the new Aristides 070, with a link to a render on their Facebook page. Since I was always keen on a) trying out a composite alternative that actually works with electric guitars / basses and b) find that in an ERG format (as some may know, I don't really play 6's), I was quite interested and followed the progress and eventually got in touch with the guys at Aristides, whom I came to know were quite into my work.

    Not that long passes by and proper finalized renders popped up, such as this:
    [​IMG]

    As the protos were made, #2 was sent to me (#1 belongs to Timo Somers, a long time Aristides player and a heck of a nice dude) for testing, which it saw a lot of prior and my feedback was delivered to the Aristides team. So, pics first:

    [​IMG]
    Timo is apparently performing the finishing touches on my guitar here. :ugh:

    [​IMG]
    The guitar just before being sent to me, awaiting final fret level and inspection.

    [​IMG]
    Dat ass, dat fret access. This is still an unpainted cover here, and a new one will be finding its way to me soon. :)

    [​IMG]
    Just so you know whose 070 this is. Notice the appropriate red / black lettering - I am pleased!

    [​IMG]
    And here she is! :D

    [​IMG]
    Classy headstock, this one. Smart move.

    [​IMG]
    All ready to go on stage...

    [​IMG]
    ...and here she is prior to her first gig in a very intimate kind of setting, alongside my Jugg-fitted Jaden Rose OS7. That means no masks, no way to compensate shortcomings - just how I like to test them.

    [​IMG]
    Slick. Really slick - original without giving me the "trying too hard" vibe.

    So, now comes the review: this is one of those things where you are confident it will work as peeps have clearly done their homework, but still have no idea as to HOW it will work for you. Speccage first:

    - Arium one piece moulded body and neck, protective glass and carbon fibre coating;
    - Hipshot bridge and Griplock tuners, chrome;
    - Seymour Duncan Sentient / Pegasus pickup set;
    - 26,5" scale, ebony fingerboard (only bit of wood on the guitar)

    So, simple as it gets, so first things first: how does this Arium thingy sound? Loud, very loud, quite clear but without feeling honky or exaggerated in the low and high frequencies (I've had a fair deals of gripes with the latter in my tests with alternative materials in particular). If I was to establish a relation to more conventional types, it's like what would happen if a 335 and Strat had a love affair and their child was born with an extra string, in a way. I found it quite pleasant. The feel is very good, no stickiness, no "foreign" feel to anything, and it's very comfortable to play even over lengthy sessions. Impeccable fretwork, solid feel, as you should demand from upmarket offerings like this.

    Needless to say, that's all nice and dandy but how does this translate when you enter her savagely with a jack tip and let the amp rip? Quite well, in fact. I have to say the SD set, while translating the tone well, could do with a hair more character shaping, and I'm installing my trusty Juggernaut set here for that very reason, but that's all about personal taste and they do respond quite well to dynamics and respect the guitar's tone both full or tapped.

    Here's a video of the lass in action:


    All in all, it's a really great guitar. Sustain is immense, and the tone is organic unlike its construction. Not just that, it's pretty, stable, comfortable and has a voice all its own while sounding like a guitar should. Most recommended, and the first time I used a composite electric that felt and sounded "right" - this one earned its spot amidst my intimidating arsenal. :yesway:
     
  2. brynotherhino

    brynotherhino Reformed Redneck

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    Dude, I think this is my favorite song of yours :) Also, that is a sweet guitar!!!
     
  3. Toxin

    Toxin no, i don't drink vodka

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    070 looks so futuristic near to Jaden Rose
     
  4. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    Yeah, I really like how they managed to create a different take on the superstrat ethos without things getting really gaudy or making you just go "oh look, another one...". :)
     
  5. MF_Kitten

    MF_Kitten Set up us the bomb

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    Not a fan of the looks, but I like the idea a lot. Very cool! The guitar world needs more composite alternatives to wood.
     
  6. WiseSplinter

    WiseSplinter SS.org Regular

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    Looks very nice indeed, and the Arium material certainly sounds very nice on paper, would love to try it out. HNGD!!

    P.S. Do you perhaps know why they went with a wooden fretboard? I would've thought they would just make that from Arium as well.
     
  7. _RH_

    _RH_ SS.org Regular

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    Cool,i agree that it's a fresh take without being gaudy. How's the weight and balance of weight ?
     
  8. Shawn

    Shawn Ibanez Guitars Forum MVP

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    That looks awesome. Very cool design. Thanks for sharing the video too.....nice tone and nice chops!
     
  9. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    Cheers, guys!

    As for the fingerboard, it's simple - they don't find Arium as used on the body to produced what they feel is a proper sounding fingerboard, so they're conducting further research until they are satisfied with a composite fingerboard material that suits the guitar tonally and in terms of endurance.
     
  10. littlemurph7976

    littlemurph7976 SS.org Regular

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    Almost looks like a stealth bomber!

    Also, great song, Fred! :cheers:
     
  11. BrailleDecibel

    BrailleDecibel \m/

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    I'll admit, I didn't like the look of the guitar at first, mainly those front bevels. But as I scrolled through the pics, it kinda grew on me, as it is a new take on a traditional design, and it looks to me like it was pulled off quite well, after I got over my initial impression. Not to mention the fact that it sounds massive in that video...loving those riffs! Happy NGD!
     
  12. JaeSwift

    JaeSwift Of Blood and Sawdust

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    Very cool to see Aristides getting international recognition. Just such a shame they're in a really bad financial position
     
  13. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    There are no financial issues with Aristides - I am actually aware of where they are, were, and project to be in the future (here's hoping as they're a hard working bunch). I'm guessing you read some article that stemmed from an ex-employee, as I'm told, which was of course less than complimentary, to the point of Pascal having to clarify things publicly on your Financial Times to dissipate the gossip that was going on.

    If anything, I find it not just unethical, but counterproductive to go on to sabotage a national business that is gaining ground on a very new and difficult approach to instrument building based on whatever grudge the man may have. Oh well, we have our share of that in these parts as well, so...
     
  14. JaeSwift

    JaeSwift Of Blood and Sawdust

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    Sorry if it came off wrong; I've been supporting Aristides from day 1 that they existed under the name of Catalyst. My first real ''pro guitar'' was a Catalyst strat. The material that Aristides invented from the cellular level up is just so superior to wood that it's insane. At the same time, coming from my part of the industry I know who their investor is as well who is/was managing things and things were not going their way. Financially speaking they still aren't off in a great place, knowing the amount of sales they have to make to warrant the millions invested in them.

    I feel like they really should have focused on ERG's before. They ran in to the problem that guitarists are extremely traditional, something every guitar company that wants to innovate will eventually face. The ERG niche is much, much more open to changes like composite materials because they've already adjusted to and embraced more than just 6 strings. I also think their price point is too high considering their original plan of going mainstream.

    In the end though, one of the financial interviewers quoted that ''Even if ''Aristides'' doesn't work as a company, guitars like these will become the standard''. They really are at the absolute forefront of composite guitar technology in that regard and they will be successful with that. I'm just fearful that it won't be the Aristides name that brings that initial success forward, but some random company that buys them up.
     
  15. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    It's a long term investment, as anything pertaining doing everything from the ground up is - it's got a lot going for them, but risks will always exist, of course.

    Funny you mention Catalyst - I loved their modernized Steinberger type but wasn't able to get my hands on one.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2013
  16. HaloHat

    HaloHat 7 string Baritones

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    All looks well, except the prices. I hope with increased sales and manufacturing experience they find a way to produce a quality sub $2000 usd guitar.

    Perhaps they can license their material and production to a larger company who can produce these sub $1500. It would [no pun] be a shame if this fades away because enough people can't afford one.

    Their growth is certainly limited based on their current price list. The 070 is not on the price list yet, however if it is priced at the average price for the companies 6 strings then they are not going to be selling these to the average working person in any country.

    \m/ Fred the Shred :bowdown:
     
  17. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    Price is always a factor pertaining an upmarket guitar made of a not that common material. Parkers are a prime example of this, and quite a fair bit more expensive. Then again, if someone forks out 4k for a TAM100 or around the 3k mark for a production .strandberg*, then the sub-3k tag on these is hardly frightening IMO. As the number of models and sales increase, the tendency is for more budget-friendly models to pop up, as money gets reinvested in new production methods and the like, but first they need to gain enough momentum for the risk - enterprises like this aren't possible using the good ole "dude with tools and loads of talent building from his basement", so we'll see a more structured set of milestones taking place, as it's not like you can just subcontract a Korean company to make them and call it a day! :lol:

    The ability to build these for cheaper is dependent on their own research, steady sales increase funding that, and production methods being cheaper as a result - there's a price to pay for fiddling with materials only you use and make, especially in this market!
     
  18. sted

    sted Active Member

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    Sounds ace but.....needs more beard.
     
  19. Fred the Shred

    Fred the Shred Shrederick

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    GTFO, Barbarian! :lol:
     
  20. Andromalia

    Andromalia Pardon my french

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    Still no corpse paint. Disappointed.




    The guitar, now, these experiments are interesting. I played a Flaxwood recently and it was an interesting experience.
     

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