For my first post in the review section of this site I thought I would review my main 7 string guitar – my Schecter Diamond Demon 7. I have had it almost 5 years and in that time I have spent 100s of hours practicing with it, recorded a 10 track album, published several YouTube videos & unleashed it for live performance on countless occasions. So I will break down my opinion of it in several categories with audio and video examples and give an overall rating out of ten at the end of each category, in case anyone reading is looking to buy a 7 string guitar in the not too-distant-future.
This guitar has my favourite configuration of pickups – dual humbuckers (Duncan designed). This coupled with a bolt on neck ensures the big sound I am looking for and I leave the only tone dial in its ‘10’ position and don’t tend to move it much. The only part of the spec of this guitar which I have felt buyer’s remorse for is the Floyd Rose tremolo as it is not something I feel I need or want to use and the added annoyance of having to undo the locking nut every time I tune is also not ideal. On top of that, the way the strings fit into the tremolo is a pain as the tremolo uses a clamping system which means that the strings can sometimes slip out which can cause me to quit on bends & vibrato with an obvious, unattractive result. Having said that I do like the upward vibrato effect I can add to chords by resting my hand on top of the tremolo but I don’t even keep the tremolo arm attached. The micro tuners do come in very handy though and the guitar has a generally robust build and feel to it.
8/10 This spec suits me but I took off 2 points for the lack of options & tremolo
In my opinion this guitar looks great in this colour. The dark matt finish keeps it understated and, whilst I like some guitars with mad shapes, its shape is nice and classic meaning it doesn’t belong in any one ‘camp’ or genre – I would be equally comfortable playing it in a metal gig as using it to perform at someone’s wedding. Although the inlays could be perceived as somewhat ‘demonic’, in keeping with the model name.
9/10 For the fact it can be used in many different genres/scenes and for its classic, understated look
Overdriven Rhythm Guitar
I think the overdriven sound you can get from this guitar is very suited to metal. I would consider the result as a ‘jack of all trades’. I use this analogy because I hear 7 string guitars all the time which would suit specific sub-genres far better but would not be suitable for much else. This is to the guitar’s credit, however, as I like to think the music I create, whilst heavy, has a more eclectic sound and broad appeal and that makes this the right sound for me. All examples in this post use my Blackstar HT Club 40 amp which is connected directly to my recording equipment using it’s Speaker Emulated Output.
Clean Rhythm Guitar
One problem I’ve always had with my guitars is getting a good clean sound on the bridge pickup. This guitar solves that. Have a listen here –
I have added some light chorus & delay and I really like the end result. Again through the Blackstar amp set to the bridge pickup. I don’t tend to use the neck pickup for clean playing but is something I will experiment with and post on in future.
Lead Guitar – Bridge Pickup
Probably the most common sound in my playing – my stock sound. With fresh strings this configuration of pickup, amp and overdrive gives a big, even tone. If you’re after biting tone that hits you in the throat then this is not really the guitar for you. In keeping with its ‘jack of all trades’ status this lead guitar sound would be suited to many styles and genres, not just metal.
Lead Guitar – Neck Pickup
Not a common pickup selection for me when playing lead guitar as it is a bit too ‘muddy’ for my taste and I rarely find a tone there that doesn’t sound better in the bridge position. I use the neck pickup position when playing my Les Paul quite often so it is probably that this guitar doesn’t offer enough variety with that pickup. Perhaps something I’ll have to upgrade.
8/10 If you’re a metal player, 7/10 for any other style. Sound-wise this guitar could be seen as one dimensional but it’s a dimension that works for me
There is one major gripe I have about this guitar’s playability and that is the position of the tremolo. The micro-tuners jut too far out and impede the picking hand. I have used other guitars with similar set ups and this is not a problem. It is not so bad as to ruin my technique but enough to present a ‘thumbs down’. Obviously I have gotten used to this but this is a good warning to anyone to fully test out a guitar before purchasing as things like this will be evident before any money is handed over.
The fret-board is also not quite as smooth as I would like, the frets seem too far apart and I feel this impedes how far I can stretch. Having said that, the neck is a ‘fast’ one as I feel that I can flutter across it with ease especially for any legato/tapping licks/riffs. Being a Les Paul user for most of my career the position of the pickup selector took some getting used to but I’ve now adjusted and the simple configuration of pickups and hardware (gripes aside) suits me and adds to the simple aesthetic of the guitar.
6/10 The tremolo sticking into and impeding my picking hand is enough to take off two points and the way the neck impedes my ability to stretch is enough to take off two more. Add a point if you play music that doesn’t require wide stretches or demanding lead guitar
If you enjoyed my Schecter Diamond Demon 7 review and want to hear the album that I mentioned in the opening paragraph which was recorded entirely with this guitar and covers all of the different sounds described then click on this picture to sample and buy it –
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