Schecter Guitars Review

Schecter guitars have long been known for their playability, good looks, and relative affordability. And if you play rock or metal, you might find that a Schecter is right for you. Whether you need an entry-level shredder guitar or a top-notch rock machine, this brand has something for you. In this Schecter guitars review, we've gathered together our top picks for the best Schecter.

Make

Model

Rating

Price

Full Review

Schecter

BälSäc E-1 FR

Cell

Schecter

C-1 FR-S SLS Evil Twin

Cell

Schecter

Sun Valley Super Shredder FR-S

Cell

Schecter

Avenger FR S Apocalypse

Cell

Schecter

Omen Extreme-6

Cell

Schecter

Solo-II Apocalypse

Cell

Schecter

Keith Merrow KM-7 MK-III Artist

Cell

Schecter

PT Pro

Cell

Schecter

Coupe Semi-Hollow

Cell

Schecter BälSäc E-1 FR -- Best Alternative Design

Important Features

  • Mahogany body with maple set neck offers incredible sustain
  • Fishman Fluence Modern pickups let you select from two different voices when performing
  • A thin C-profile neck, ebony fingerboard, and a Floyd Rose tremolo make it easy to play expressively
  • The unusual black orange crackle finish makes it a true visual standout

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • The three-piece maple neck is reinforced with a carbon rod for resistance against bowing
  • Fluence Modern pickups let you choose a tight, defined modern active voice or a high-output voice that works well with distortion
  • Balsac jaw inlay and distinctive finish makes it ideal for Gwar fans
  • Locking tuners let you dive-bomb while staying in tune

Cons

  • If you aren't a Gwar fan, you might not appreciate the Balsac truss rod cover or inlay
  • Some players might not like the departure from the usual Schecter aesthetic

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

This Explorer-style Schecter guitar is certainly a departure from the brand's typical double-cutaways. It's also one of Schecter's most interesting signature models -- it's designed in cooperation with BälSäc the Jaws ‘o Death, the rhythm guitarist for Gwar. And with high-end pickups, traditional tonewoods, and a Floyd Rose tremolo, the E-1 is designed for the stage.

Our Star Rating

We think this guitar has the best alternative design on the list, and we give it four out of five stars.

Schecter C-1 FR-S SLS Evil Twin -- Best for Lead Guitar

Important Features

  • Active pickups give you plenty of high-output tones
  • The C-1 electric guitar black finish and distinctive inlays make it a standout on stage
  • The body has a flamed maple cap for just enough tonal bite
  • Neck-through construction creates great sustain

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Slim neck and ebony fingerboard makes it easy to play
  • The C-1 electric guitar black body is contoured for playing comfort
  • Locking nut maintains tuning stability
  • Unique pickup combination is exceptionally versatile

Cons

  • Some metal guitarists might prefer the sound of a mahogany body
  • It may be too expensive for some guitarists

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

This version of Schecter's C-1 electric guitar seems like it was born to play the lead. The swamp ash body gives you slightly bright tones that float over the rhythm. And the Floyd Rose tremolo lets you dive-bomb and string-bend to your heart's content.

The real beauty of this guitar comes in its pickups. The neck humbucker is a Sustainiac humbucker. This pickup involves a sustain circuit that allows notes to ring indefinitely. The bridge pickup is a Fishman Fluence Modern humbucker that has two voicing circuits for great tonal versatility.

Our Star Rating

This Schecter C-1 is the best guitar for playing lead on the list. We give it five out of five stars.

Schecter Sun Valley Super Shredder FR-S -- Best Midrange Option

Important Features

  • Thin C maple bolt-on neck gives you fast playability
  • Tremolo system makes it a great choice for expressive playing
  • Active pickups provide the high-output sound you need for hard rock or metal
  • Locking nut provides great tuning stability

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Bright, attractive finish make it a great choice for guitar players who perform
  • A mahogany body gives you a dark, growling tone
  • This is one of the more affordable guitars Schecter makes
  • Contoured neck joint and ebony fingerboard make it incredibly playable

Cons

  • Bolt-on neck joint doesn't have the same sustain as neck-through design
  • Some players have complained that the Sustainiac pickup has a somewhat weak sound

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

As the name suggests, this is a great guitar for the serious shredder. And despite its quality features, this superstrat-style guitar is available for an affordable price. Its mahogany double-cutaway body and maple neck make it an outstanding lead machine for rock or metal.

This guitar also features a unique combination of pickups -- a Sustainiac and an EMG Retro Active Hot 70 humbucker. The 3-way pickup switching gives you access to a wide variety of possible tones.

Our Star Rating

This is a great guitar in a great price range. We think it's the best midrange guitar on the list, and we give it four out of five stars.

Schecter Avenger FR S Apocalypse -- Most Durable

Important Features

  • Unusual offset body makes this Schecter guitar very comfortable to play
  • Unique pickup configuration offers plenty of high-quality tonal options
  • Double-locking Floyd Rose 1500 tremolo offers unparalleled tuning stability
  • Satin black hardware and bright blue finish makes it a real standout on stage

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Given its features, it's in a fairly affordable price range
  • Swamp ash body offers a welcome departure from the tone of mahogany
  • The compound radius ebony fretboard is incredibly playable
  • The carbon-reinforced neck is especially durable

Cons

  • More traditional players might prefer the sound of a mahogany body
  • Some players dislike the non-traditional sound of the Sustainiac

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

This unusual-looking axe can stand up to some serious abuse. To start, the Floyd Rose double-locking tremolo keeps you in tune no matter how hard or often you like to dive-bomb. And the thin-C padauk and maple neck are reinforced with carbon fiber to reduce the risk of warping and other damage.

This Schecter guitarist one of the few that is made of swamp ash -- an unusual choice for a metal guitar. But a swamp ash body gives you decidedly more midrange bite than you get with mahogany, and some players might prefer that.

Pickup-wise, you get a Sustainiac and a Schecter USA Apocalypse-VI humbucker. The combination of the set neck and Sustainiac pickup gives you infinite sustain when you need it.

Our Star Rating

We think this unique Schecter guitar is the most durable on the list. We give it 4.5 out of five stars.

Schecter Omen Extreme-6 -- Best Budget Option

Important Features

  • String-thru mahogany body creates impressive sustain
  • Schecter Diamond Plus humbuckers offer a decent tone while keeping the price low
  • Quilted maple top on the mahogany Schecter Omen adds some crispness to the tone
  • High-end touches like a rosewood fingerboard and black cherry finish give it a quality look

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Plenty of players will like the electric guitar black cherry finish on the quilted maple top
  • String-thru body gives the Schecter Omen 6 great sustain and keeps tuning stable
  • Push-pull coil tap is rarely found on guitars in this price range
  • Thin-C maple neck with rosewood fretboard is very comfortable to play

Cons

  • Some players might wish the Schecter Omen 6 had a tremolo
  • The Schecter humbuckers aren't as clear as the pickups on more expensive guitars

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

Since Schecter guitars are regarded as some of the best in the business, many models are out of reach for players on a budget. But the Schecter Omen Extreme-6 is a prime example of an affordable Schecter guitar that is still high quality.

The included Schecter Diamond Plus humbuckers are commonly used on less expensive Schecter guitars, but they're still equipped with a push-pull coil tap, and 3-way pickup switching makes it easy to sculpt your sound. And a stunning quilted maple top with an electric guitar black cherry finish makes the Schecter Omen 6 look more expensive than it is.

Our Star Rating

We think the Schecter Omen Extreme-6 is the best budget guitar on the list. We give it 3.5 out of five stars.

Schecter Solo-II Apocalypse -- Best Les Paul-Style Guitar

Important Features

  • Excellent harmonic content from the Apocalypse VI humbuckers lays the foundation for powerful leads
  • Set neck and Tune-O-Matic bridge deliver the sustain you need for metal
  • Black hardware and red reign finish make it a standout on stage
  • Coil tap and 3-way switching give you a tone that's good enough for almost any genre

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Swamp ash body gives it a lighter tone than mahogany Schecter guitars
  • Thin-C neck with compound radius ebony fretboard makes the Apocalypse a fast-playing machine
  • Distinctive body shape and aggressive red finish make it a distinctive-looking guitar
  • Apocalypse humbuckers with enhanced harmonic content give you a highly detailed tone

Cons

  • The single-cut body doesn't let you access as many frets as a double cutaway
  • Some lead players might prefer a guitar with a tremolo

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

While the Solo-II Apocalypse might look more like a rock guitar, it's most at home playing intense metal. Its swamp ash body is equipped with Schecter Apocalypse VI humbuckers that yield a powerful tone while enhancing harmonic content. The pickups also have a push-pull coil tap for an even greater variety of possible tones. And intonation will never be a worry with the Tune-O-Matic bridge and locking tuners.

The Solo-II Apocalypse is also designed to be supremely playable. The set padauk and maple neck offer plenty of sustain, and the single-cutaway body gives you great access to all the frets. The thin-C profile and ebony fingerboard ensure that you can play blistering riffs when you need to.

Our Star Rating

We think this distinctive Schecter guitar is the best Les Paul-style instrument on our list. We give it four out of five stars.

Schecter Keith Merrow KM-7 MK-III Artist -- Best 7 String Guitar

Important Features

  • Double-cutaway body with ultra-thin neck and ebony fingerboard provides fast playability
  • String-thru body combined with neck-through construction means this Schecter guitar has excellent sustain
  • The 7-string electric guitar build is ideal for drop tuning and creating a growling low end
  • Hipshot bridge and locking tuners ensure perfect intonation

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Unique tonewood combination delivers sustain with enough midrange bite
  • Keith Merrow signature pickups give it a tone you won't find anywhere else
  • Stunning top finish with poplar burl top makes it beautiful to look at
  • A longer 26.5" scale length is great for drop tunings

Cons

  • Some players might prefer a more traditional body
  • If you haven't played an extended range guitar, it can be a bit of an adjustment

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

Some metal players need the extended range afforded by a 7-string electric guitar. And this Keith Merrow signature brings extended range, good looks, and great playability. The swamp ash body is topped with striking poplar burl, and the blue crimson finish is truly a sight to behold.

If you prefer a guitar with a distinctive tone, you'll love the Keith Merrow Custom Series Fishman Fluence humbuckers. These pickups are both warm and a little gritty. It's also made with neck-through construction for powerful and unparalleled sustain.

Our Star Rating

We think this is the best 7-string electric guitar on the list. It gets 4.5 out of five stars.

Schecter PT Pro -- Best for Multiple Genres

Important Features

  • Thin, Tele-style alder body is lightweight and easy to handle onstage
  • Z-Plus humbuckers with coil tap give you plenty of tonal options with a vintage twist
  • Stunning quilted maple veneer is a real audience-pleaser
  • Black hardware still gives it a metal-inspired look

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • String-thru body and locking tuners support both great intonation and tuning stability
  • Pickups let you tweak pole pieces to fully customize your sound
  • Coil splitting lets you access classic Tele twang when you need it
  • Three-way pickup switching makes it very tonally versatile

Cons

  • Modern metal purists may not like the vintage tone
  • Alder isn't a typical metal tonewood, and some guitarists may not like it

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

When you picture Schecter guitars, you likely don't imagine a Telecaster body. But the PT Pro is an outstanding choice for rock and metal players in search of vintage looks and tone. The alder body has a beautiful quilted maple top, and the Schecter USA Z-Plus humbuckers offer a distinctive, vintage-inspired tone.

Aesthetically, the PT Pro is a standout, too -- the thin roasted maple neck is stunning, as is the translucent blue burst finish. The string-through-body supports good sustain.

Our Star Rating

We think this Schecter guitar is the best one for multiple genres, and it gets five out of five stars.

Schecter Coupe Semi-Hollow -- Best for Jazz and Blues

Important Features

  • Semi-hollow maple body is great for blues, jazz, folk, and even some kinds of rock
  • Bigsby tremolo is equipped with a locking bridge to preserve tuning stability
  • C-shaped neck with ebony fingerboard is smooth and comfortable to play
  • Stunning gold hardware gives it a glamorous look

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • A semi-hollow body is capable of delivering an incredibly warm tone
  • Coil tap means you get the benefit of single coils and humbuckers
  • Tusq nut and Tune-O-Matic bridge give you great sustain
  • Gold hardware and pearloid inlays make it a standout

Cons

  • If you play hard rock or metal, this might not be the guitar for you
  • The neck is thicker than that of most other Schecter guitars

Brief Review & Star Rating

Review

Just about all Schecter guitars are designed for metal and rock. But this versatile semi-hollow guitar is ideal for a range of genres. Its vintage-inspired Tesla TV-ML1 humbuckers sound great clean or through an overdriven amp. And like many Schecter instruments, it's equipped with a coil tap so you can play with single-coil tones too. The all-maple body adds some crispness to its already warm tone, and the Bigsby tremolo gives you lots of room for pitch bending.

Our Star Rating

We think this is the best Schecter for jazz and blues on the list. We give it four out of five stars.

Buying Guide: What Should You Look for in a Schecter Guitar?

Tonewoods

When it comes to electric guitars, tonewoods are very important. If you like warmth and sustain, mahogany is a great choice. It's the most popular wood when it comes to metal legends. However, it's very heavy, and some newer metal and rock guitars are being made of lighter woods like swamp ash and alder.

Pickups

Pickups may be the most important part of any guitar. And while the best pickups for you might not be the best ones for someone else, there are some things to look for. One is coil tap. Coil tap lets you effectively split a humbucker into two single-coils, which is great when it comes to tonal versatility.

Some pickups also have dual voicing capability. With the flick of a switch, you can change the voice of the pickup. This is a valuable feature, but it's usually only found on higher-end guitars.

Neck Considerations

The neck of any guitar is important when it comes to both sound and playability. There are three types of neck joints -- bolt-on, set neck, and neck-through. A bolt-on neck is the most affordable, but it doesn't transfer the energy of the strings to the body as effectively as other types. A set neck is glued into the body, so it transfers energy more effectively and increases sustain. A neck-through design means the neck is a single piece of wood running through the guitar body.

The neck profile is also critical. Most Schecter guitars have a thin C neck. A C-shaped neck has a smooth, curved back that is comfortable to play with, and a thin C has a shallower profile. If you're a shredder, that slimmer profile makes for a faster-playing instrument.

Fingerboard wood can also make a difference when it comes to playability. Lots of players believe ebony is the best for rock and metal, as its naturally slick surface makes it incredibly fast-playing.

Final Thoughts

We don't think you can really go wrong with any Schecter on the list. But if you strictly play metal, we think the C-1 is the best -- the dual-voiced Fishman Fluence Modern pickups make it tonally versatile, and the tremolo makes it a great choice for dive-bombing. But if you play multiple genres, we think the PT Pro is a great option -- you can access heavy metal tones and classic Tele twang alike.

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