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The Schecter Hellraiser C-1 is a 6 string electric guitar featuring active EMG pickups, a mahogany body and a set neck. The RRP is £750.
The pickups are EMG 81TW/89. The EMG 81 is a classic pickup, particularly for playing Metal, and the TW-version has a bonus in store. You can pull a switch, and this humbucker pickup, which is beefy for rhythm guitars becomes a single coil pickup, which can dish up the twangy and thinner sound more reminiscent to a Fender Stratocaster. This leads to the guitar having a very versatile sound. You can play meaty metal or vintage Jimi Hendrix, whatever you feel like, whenever you feel like.
The guitar comes in black, white and in red cherry. I have the red version, which is stunning! There is Abalone binding on the red cherry and white versions and grey pearl binding on the black finished guitars. The fretboard has gothic cross inlays. It's a shiny finish with a lot of detail, and I am completely in love with the look of my guitar!
Some people feel that the necks of the Schecter guitars are too thick. I, however, feel very comfortable playing it, and after having demoed several ESP LTD, Jackson and Schecter guitars in the store, there was no doubt this was the guitar that worked for me in terms of sound, feel and look. Obviously this is a personal thing, and anyone wishing to buy a new guitar should make sure they could try some out in person before deciding. I've previously been playing Ibanez, Washburn and Fender guitars, and they all felt fine at the time, except the sound of the Fender was too thin for Metal. However, having played the Schecter, all those other guitars feel thin and light and uncomfortable. To be fair, they were cheaper guitars.
My main style of choice is Metal, and I do use the guitar for recording purposes frequently. It delivers a crispy and meaty sound, which is exactly what I've been wanting since I got into playing guitar. You can spend years tryng out different amplifiers, microphones and EQ treatments, but the one thing that makes the single biggest change in sound is the actual guitar. I tried changing the pickups in my old Ibanez (from passive EMGs to active Seymour Duncan Blackouts), and while that did make a difference, it was only a minor difference compared to the Schecter guitar out of the box. The guitar sounds beautiful for cleaner sounds as well. Because of the mentioned coil tap pickups, the range of sounds that can be achieved is very impressive.
RRP is £750. The Floyd Royce version is around £900, but if you are primarily going to play rhythm guitar, you don't need a Floyd Royce. Is the guitar worth the price? YES! You may want to think you can get away with spending half this amount on a guitar. You can, but not if you want to record. This guitar is good enough to bring to recording sessions. Don't spend less if you are serious about recording.