Friday, April 14, 2006

Because I'm All About the Guitar Pt. 25: Charvel sucks

Image hosting by PhotobucketThere was a time when owning a Charvel guitar was truly something. It was a status symbol. You were on the cutting edge of rock. Sonically, they rang the notes that the world collectively banged their head to. Eddie Van Halen endorsed 'em, man. What more can you say? It's a pretty elite group of manufacturers that can claim that. He really didn't whore himself out like some artists have.

Image hosting by PhotobucketThis is my dream guitar style (not the paint job, though). I love the single pickup, single volume knob, Floyd Rose bridge-style guitar. There are not a lot of really good guitar manufacturers making this style of guitar, so when Charvel came back recently and reintroduced the "1984" style, I was pretty happy.

Until I saw the freakin' sticker price.

I don't understand it. I just don't understand. Not that there aren't very expensive guitars. I mean, if saw a Les Paul going for that, I wouldn't blink twice. But I'd also be getting a hell of a lot more guitar for the money.

Let me explain. You're not getting some awesome, custom shop, hand-carved masterpiece here. You're getting a CNC-routed, single pick-up, non-exotic wood, thick painted guitar. Quality, yes, but the only thing special about this is that EVH has lent his name to it.

By comparison, Kramer has re-issued their "1984" model guitar (Eddie was originally with Kramer before switching to Charvel). $840 vs. nearly $2,500 for essentially the same guitar. And, honestly, you're getting a lot more cool with the Kramer.

Heck, if you want this style guitar and hand-crafted goodness you can pick up a J. Frog for less money than the Charvel. You can see that a comparable J. Frog will run you $1,300. Almost half less than the way less cool Charvel (and you're getting a much better instrument, IMO).

Also, if you scroll down to the bottom of the J. Frog list, you'll see the skull and bones guitar. I'm gonna talk about that guitar next week.

Previous installments:
Part 24: I'm lazy
Part 23: Rob Zombie's Educated Horses, a review
Part 22.5: An awesome video
Part 22: Fretting over the board
Part 21.4: A shout out;
Part 21: Cop Out;
Part 20: Lenny Kravitz;
Part 19: Is it guitar or is it Korg?;
Part 18: A beautiful guitar;
Part 17: Getting all amped up over the sound;
Part 16: Not quite plug and play;
Part 15.25: Don't let Gibson buy your company;
Part 15: The greatest guitarist you've never heard of;
Part 14: The finish;
Part 13: Vernon Reid;
Part 12: The vibrato tremolo;
Part 11: Jimmy Page;
Part 10: What's in the wood?;
Part 9: Rebuilding a guitar;
Part 8: G3 2005;
Part 7: John Petrucci;
Part 6: Chingon;
Part 5: Home recording on the cheapity cheap;
Part 4.01: Guitar Zen;
Part 4: Full service Friday -- concert going in 1993;
Part 3.5: Gretsch guitars;
Part 3: The Reverend Horton Heat;
Part 2: Back when I thought I could play;
Part 1: Zakk Wylde then and now

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