The metal beckons your soul to purchase an 8 string guitar. The metal tells you that the 8 strings are all you need to be able to perform at a level you can be proud of. The metal speaks to you on the most basic, musical level. And yet the metal does not tell you which guitar to buy. Because metal is a concept, not a conscious, thinking, talking thing. Thankfully you have me to look at instruments with. So let me guide your eyes at the Washburn PX-SOLAR180C Parallaxe Double Cut 8-String so you can see whether this is your destiny or not.
The design of the guitar seem to be one that so many other metal loving guitar manufacturers pick up and use. The double cutaway, with an obvious stratocaster design is something so easily recognizable in the world of guitars, you might confuse this one for a bunch of others. Not that it is a bad idea, just that the design is a little overused. Still, it looks just like a much more expensive guitar and it is comfortable and fun to play. The black coloring of the guitar look alright. Just a cool look.
The body of the guitar is made out of swamp ash. You see this hardwood more often in the guitars that try to be in the affordable price range, but also want to retain their integrity. Swamp Ash was especially popular in the past for many of its lovely qualities. Tonally it is similar to mahogany, yet a little less extreme in its resonance. The bass tones are well expressed, the midtones are lovely and strong while the high tones have a great, airy quality to them. The tonewood is also very lightweight, which is a great thing to have on an 8 string guitar, which is expected to be heavy. The hardwood is a little softer than mahogany, making it more likely to dent and scratch, but nothing to worry about too much.
The neck of the guitar is made out of maple. The choice seems to be traditional for most guitars nowadays, and this is not a bad thing. Maple is a great piece of hardwood, capable of resisting warping and most kinds of damage. The neck of the guitar is set into the body, providing some extra sturdiness and stability to the neck. The fretboard is made of ebony, a smooth and enjoyable wood to play on.
The guitar comes with a 6 saddle fixed bridge. This bridge provides the instrument with great string stability and some great action.
The nut of the guitar is made of a good quality synthetic bone. This provides the guitar with some clear sounds without any hum or buzz.
The tuning machine of the guitar is great looking, thanks to the stylish headstock. It also works really well, thankfully not having tuning stability issues to worry about.
The guitar comes, as most of 8 string electric guitars do, with a double humbucker setup. Unfortunately the two humbuckers used here are not active, but passive. Still, the guitar has some nice sound, with great output and awesome low tones, as well as interesting high tones. The problem is passive pickups have a harder time picking up the details of the 7th and 8th strings of the guitar.
The controls of the guitar are fairly simplistic. You get a master volume control and a master tone control, as well as a pickup configuration lever.
The guitar has a decent sound. The output of the instrument is powerful and definitely something that most players will enjoy. The tonality of the instrument is rather great as well, though the pickups struggle with reproducing the entirety of the sound’s range. Still, the sound of these pickups is better than most guitars in the price range get to have.
This is a very nice guitar that provides you with all of the basics you will need, plus a little bit more power on top. The only problem you might have are the pickups, but a beginner player will find them adequate, until they decided to replace them. Recommended.