Well... look no further. The Charvel Desolation Star is worth every penny . Many Thanks to my buddy Wayne for turning me on to these. I have a bunch of guitars (mostly USA made, custom shop, small luthier built) but have always been intrigued by the "cheapos". This CHINESE made Charvel delivers in spades.... how can they produce a guitar of this quality and make money?! Who cares, right? LOL So here she is.... Not a flaw on this puppy with the exception of some glue that had transferred from the box to the horn. I cleaned that up with some polish and it's perfect... in every way. The pickups alone are worth the price of admission...EMG 81/85's. The guitar looks like it was dipped in glass... albeit, a bit thick on the finish (more on that later). It's a neck thru with excellent fret work... I mean, not a fret file chatter mark on the frets or the fret board. My R9 had chatter marks on the fret board.... Argh! Not one high or low fret and the fret ends were finished extremely well. Binding, purfling and all hardware is excellent. Even the pot is decent and usable without and scratchiness. Bridge posts and stop tail are well anchored and screwed in evenly. The only quirks.... the transition of the finish from the back of the guitar to the bare maple neck has a ridge to it. The finish is so thick... you can actually see it here. I'll knock that down with some sandpaper and it will be perfect. The only other issue (and it's not that bad)... it has a plastic nut. However, it is cut well and does not effect playing ... at all! There's a bit of filler where the inlays were set... but again, very minimal and I've seen more on high-end USA guitars. So there you have it... I'm thoroughly impressed. This will be a fun guitar to play out... Cheers!