At Ant Hill Music, awesome is the only phrase that comes to mind on this guitar. I can’t think of any other words to describe this axe.
The Desolation Soloist DX-1 ST has Charvel’s classic Mahogany Soloist body profile, which feature a flame maple top, multi-ply binding (body, neck and headstock; single-ply on Satin Black finish), through-body maple neck with scalloped heel and scalloped upper horn, compound radius (12″-16″) rosewood fingerboard with 24 jumbo frets and Charvel “shark tooth” inlays, EMG 85 (neck) and 81 (bridge) humbucking pickups with black bezels and three-way toggle switching, single domed metal volume control knob, “football” jack plate, adjustable string-through-body bridge, locking tuners and black nickel hardware.
Pretty loaded guitar. Especially for the $600-$750 price tag. This guitar is super hot. The unfinished neck’s oiled wood treatment makes it extremely comfortable and smooth when you’re playing for any of its 24 jumbo frets.
The Desolation’s EMG 81 and 85 active pickups are a popular combo with metal guitarists who like their searing highs, immediate response, and drum-tight bottom end. The lack of tone knob may be a bit of a disappointment to players who like the tone of an overdriven 85 with the tone rolled all of the way off. It’s understandable that the lack of a tone control probably isn’t a big deal on a lot of shredders’ list of needs. However its does limit the guitar’s tonal versatility for just about everyone else. The guitar’s smooth carves made it feel like the mahogany body was connected to me during more serious shredding.
For the most part, the balance between the low-end girth and top-end shimmer is very good, but if you tend to use your amp in high-gain settings, the high end can become rigid and bristly, needing that non existent tone control to cut back.
A metal player who needs a solid guitar that’s both awesome to look at and the easy on your wallet will find it hard to turn away from the Charvel Desolation DX-1. The quality is exceptional and the tones can range from rich to aggressive…the neck is so sleek. Its clean tones can’t replace your favorite Strat or Tele, and the lack of a tone knob makes it almost impossible to cut the treble in some settings. When considering the guitar’s incredible playability and crushing overdriven tones, those things can feel like small trade-offs, especially at such a great price.
We hope that the customer enjoys this axe as much as I do (I do,I really do). We hope to see more great guitars from the customers stash.
Till next time. Play well, and play on!