NGD: T h e A b a s i C u r s e. . .

Discussion in 'Extended Range Guitars' started by jephjacques, Oct 22, 2020.

  1. jephjacques

    jephjacques BUTTS LOL

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    Settle in, boys, girls, and gender-nonconforming folks, and listen to my tale...

    Back in the Before Times, I put in a pre-order for the first round of Larada 8 strings. Then the shit hit the fan with Falbo, and I got a refund. Abasi re-launched his guitar line with Grover Jackson's shop building them, and I was still interested, but decided to hold off on ordering one. My willpower only held out so long, though, and through luck of the draw I grabbed a Larada Master Series 8 when a run dropped this summer. And here's where things get sPoOkY...

    That first guitar was not good. Ridiculous amounts of fret buzz, and what looked to me like a warped neck. Took it to my local tech, who confirmed my diagnosis and added that the neck was STILL shifting all over the place. Abasi, to their credit, immediately offered me a full refund or an exchange. I opted for an exchange, because I have guitar disease. I was given my pick of the next run of USA 8s, and chose a stealth black with roasted maple neck and fretboard. They also covered the shipping fees to send the busted guitar back to them. Ivan is a classy dude and it was a pleasure to deal with him through this process.

    It shipped out a couple weeks later, at which point Canadian customs decided it needed to sit in a warehouse for a week while they scratched their asses and ignored my repeated attempts to get them to clear the package. It finally cleared, and arrived at my doorstep today.

    I was legitimately scared to open the case. What if this one was another dud? What if it was Just Fine But Not Worth $3.5 Grand? What if, god forbid, there was slightly imperfect finish masking around the neck joint?!?!?!?!?!? WHAT IF THE ABASI CURSE IS REAL?

    Turns out no, the guitar rules, here's some pics.

    IMG_0924.jpg

    yessssssss

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    Ignore the smudges, those are the result of my grubby hands fumbling all over it

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    Neck is perfectly straight (minus a tiny bit of truss rod relief of course). Fretwork is spotless. I love the blind fret slots.

    IMG_0927.jpg

    By viewing this image you have been subjected to tHe aBaSi cUrSe. You must like this post within 7 days or Maestro Alex Gregory will come to your house and rub his balls on all your guitars.

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    Quartersawn roasted maple! LOOKS. STABILITY. TOAN.

    OKAY Y'ALL IT'S REVIEW TIME:

    First things first: this sucker is LIGHT. Definitely Strandberg territory if you discount the headstock. It's very slightly neck-heavy if you play with it on your right leg, but only if you don't put your forearm on the body at all (who does this when they play sitting down? nobody imo). Balances perfectly on a strap and in classical position. The matte black finish is real nice, I don't see any flaws anywhere and I went over it with a fine toothed comb. It does pick up fingerprints easily, as you can see in the photos, but WHO CARES IT'S NOT A DISPLAY PIECE

    Neck shape is a super thin oval. It feels slightly flatter than my 080, but has more rounded shoulders than an Ibanez. Very, very comfy if you like fast necks. The extended neck joint is definitely noticeable but not an impediment. I'm guessing after a couple days I won't even feel it anymore. The neck has a REALLY nice finish, just buttery smooth. Feels like a well-loved piece of furniture, if that makes any sense.

    Playability is out of this world. The combination of thin neck, smooth finish, fanned frets, and narrow string spacing makes it the fastest-feeling 8 I've ever played. It came set up with SUPER low action, and I'll probably raise it a bit eventually, but even set up Tosin-style there's really not much fret buzz as long as I'm careful with my technique. Really hammers home what a lemon the first one I got was. The fanned frets are fanned frets- after 2 minutes you forget they're there. Helps that the fretwork is A+.

    Tone wise, I still find the Abasi bridge pickup too hot for my taste, but all I really need to do is turn down the gain and lower the pickup a bit. The cleans, split coil sounds, and neck pickup are all GLORIOUS. I wasn't expecting to care much about the voicing switch, but I really like voicing 2 for the bridge pup in particular. Makes it sound more like a passive, which is nice. I could see that being my main heavy rhythm sound.

    One comment I've seen a lot in the general Abasi thread is that the USA series are "nice guitars, but not worth the price." I'm happy to report that this is a $3500 guitar that feels like a $3500 guitar. Build quality is as good as any non-Aristides I've come across. Have I mentioned how nice the neck feels? Feels good man

    If you bothered to read the wall of text at the top of this post, or followed the Abasi thread, you know the hoops I've had to jump through to end up with this guitar. It was worth the trouble! Ivan at Abasi was totally great through this entire process, and I'm 100% satisfied with the instrument I ended up getting. If the other guitars they're putting out are on this level, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them.
     
  2. kidmendel

    kidmendel SS.org Regular

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    I've been waiting to see where your Canadian Customs saga was going to end, congrats! That's a looker for sure!
     
  3. StevenC

    StevenC SS.org Regular

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    HNGD! So glad it only took you 5 Tosin signatures to get a keeper.
     
  4. jephjacques

    jephjacques BUTTS LOL

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    batting .200 baby
     
  5. pott

    pott SS.org Regular

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    That thread was a rollercoaster of emotion; I'm glad it worked out and thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    I will comment on one other thing... that backplate. It looks rather thick and not recessed?
     
  6. DeathByButterslax

    DeathByButterslax SS.org Regular

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    looks sick! Congrats!

    3500CAD??
     
  7. Lorcan Ward

    Lorcan Ward 7slinger

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    Woo a happy ending!! Sounds a keeper for sure! Happy NGD!

    Ahh not again :(
     
    StevenC and Hollowway like this.
  8. cip 123

    cip 123 Vendor

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    Looks sick in black! Customs probably held it to play it!
     
  9. Bdtunn

    Bdtunn SS.org Regular

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    Congrats and it’s a beauty!!

    I had a guitar stuck at the ups customs in winterpeg for a week and a half because it was flagged. No one could tell me why, then they released it....
     
  10. Frostbite

    Frostbite Periphery Shill

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    Fuck me I need one of these things...
     
  11. bassisace

    bassisace SS.org Regular

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    Happy new guitar day!! It looks insane!

    To be fair there have been quite a bit of reported QC issues with Abasi ranging from minor finish problems on headstocks and dings to more important problems like warped necks and pickup alignment problems, notably for the bridge pickup and higher strings resulting in lower volume for the small e string compared to other strings.

    All this to say that I understand your stress before receiving the guitar and I’m happy to hear it’s a good build hahaha !
     
  12. Floppystrings

    Floppystrings No like the floppy

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    Can you post a video of you playing the guitar? I would really like to see it in action. It looks awesome.
     
  13. Ben Pinkus

    Ben Pinkus SS.org Regular

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    Glad theres a super positive outcome to the saga! Glad you're happy with it!

    Two big (double) thumbs up from me
     
  14. jephjacques

    jephjacques BUTTS LOL

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    Fucking around with my AxeFX presets and have discovered that one of my main gripes with the bridge pickup is solved simply by taking the drive pedal out of the signal chain and compensating with tweaking the gain on the amp itself. My stock rhythm tone (TS808 into the Engl Savage model) went from "ugh this is unusable" to "hehehehehHEHEHEHEHEHEHE"
     
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  15. HungryGuitarStudent

    HungryGuitarStudent SS.org Regular

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    I had the same « discovery » when I got my J Larada. It’s great to hear you’re liking it after all the struggles you’ve been through!
     
  16. Pietjepieter

    Pietjepieter SS.org Regular

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    HNGD!!

    Good to hear it all turned out nice!

    Killer guitar man! That neck joint is out there!
     
  17. CW7

    CW7 SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for igniting the GAS for a Master 8 to go along with my J7. Now, to wait for that email...
     
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  18. mungiisi

    mungiisi SS.org Regular

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    Looks marvellous! Happy NGD!
     
  19. philkilla

    philkilla Baritone Maniac Contributor

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    Definitely a roller coaster. Glad it worked out.

    Not my cup of tea sight unseen, but if it rips, than happy NGD.
     
  20. Velokki

    Velokki GAS station

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    Good to hear of a really positive experience with Abasi.

    I still wouldn't pay 3500 for one, though :D

    Glad you're enjoying yours!
     

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