|Body And Neck:|
Schecter have a gift for producing beautiful rock guitars that are hard not to pick up and shred. And this ominous Synyster Gates Custom – designed by Avenged Sevenfold lead guitarist Synyster Gates himself – is another excellent example of what the Californian company can do for under a grand. Let’s see what all the fuss is about.
It’s clear that this extroverted guitar won’t suit everyone, but those inspired by Avenged Sevenfold – or even hard metal in general – will find huge appeal in this menacing model. It features an edgy but curvaceous double-cutaway body shape with a 25.5” scale length, finished in glossy black and stylish silver pinstripes. From the body emerges a three-piece C-shaped mahogany neck, that’s set into the body and benefits from Schecter’s ‘Ultra-Access’ construction – allowing full access to the highest of the 24 extra jumbo frets that sit on the ebony fretboard. It’s super quick to play too, which makes it a shredder’s dream. Complemented by the horned headstock, black hardware, and pearloid ‘Syn' inlays (with a Death Bat at 12th fret), this is one stylish metal axe.
We mention the hardware comes in matching black, and it all feels solid and built to perform. Starting at the top you’ll find six Grover tuners on the headstock in a 3+3 configuration, which feel smooth and responsive, although you won’t need to tune it on a daily basis thanks to the addition of the Floyd Rose 1000 Series Tremolo bridge, paired with a locking nut. This keeps tuning stable and precise, which is wonderful for aggressive rhythm playing and soloing. Unfortunately, considering the price creeps into premium territory, this guitar doesn’t come with a case, which is its only real shortfall.
You’re unlikely to find the thick, distorted tone of Avenged Sevenfold with any old pickup – which is good news for those considering this guitar, as it comes fitted with two powerful Seymour Duncan Invader humbuckers – a TB-8 at the bridge, with a SH-8N at the neck – featuring overwound coils and ceramic magnets. Things are kept simple when it comes to the controls – just two black chrome knobs, that control tone and volume for each pickup individually, via a push/pull function. There’s also a three-way pickup selector switch to choose between them.
Synyster Gates loves Schecter and it’s clear to see why, as his custom model sounds epic. The pickups on his ultra-premium Custom S differ slightly from what we find on this model, but Seymour Duncan Invaders turn any guitar into a beast – and this is no different, offering the Synyster Gates Custom a huge output. The guitar handles clean playing with good clarity, but the pickups truly shine when the distortion is cranked up – thick and full, but with a crispness that allows every note to make it through the mix, while chugging drop-tuned rhythm playing has all the low-end you'd need and more. Superb!
Whether a fan of Avenged Sevenfold or not, you have to respect Schecter’s offering. Dripping with attitude, the Synyster Gates Custom is packed with super playability, quality components, and a beastly sound, making it hard to ignore for any metalhead.