Charvel Blog

Premier Guitar Reviews the Pro-Mod San Dimas Style 1 HH FR

Posted on September 29th, 2016 by Morgan Brunner


The Pro-Mod San Dimas Style 1 HH FR received a glowing two-page review in Premier Guitar’s October issue, also earning the magazine’s “Premier Gear” stamp of approval.

“For a lot of aspiring shredders, the image of Warren DeMartini’s Charvel San Dimas in Ratt’s ‘Round and Round’ video—with its blood and skull graphic—was about as badass as you could get in 1984,” writes reviewer Joe Charupakorn. “That image helped cement the San Dimas’ place as one of the must-have axes of the shred era. But it was no flash in the pan.”

The San Dimas still stays true to those roots but offers many upgraded features that technical players covet, and Charupakorn’s review offers a deep dive into the newest Pro-Mod Style 1 HH FR guitar’s looks, specs and sound.

“With its transparent, tobacco sunburst, quilted maple top on an alder body, zebra humbuckers, and maple neck, the Pro-Mod version looks sharp, and a lot like an ‘80s shred kid grown up and keeping it classy in middle age. Rather more lurid solid colors like slime green and neon pink are also available for permanent adolescents.”

Charupakorn continues with a detailed tour of the guitar’s construction before turning his focus on the “six pack of sound” that makes this guitar standout sonically.

“You can get great sounds from just about every configuration,” he wrote. “The neck pickup is crisp with a lot of bite, and free of tubbiness. The middle sounded a little glassier than the neck position and inspired whammy-infused, clean melodies (Steve Vai’s ‘Call it Sleep’ riff among them). The bridge pickup is muscular, open, and sounds reminiscent of some of Guthrie Govan’s brash lead tones. For rhythm playing, the tight low end makes Eddie Van Halen-style metal-boogie riffs and percussive djent-type rhythms sound equally tough and clear.”

Charupakorn also praises the addition of the tone knob, which unlocks more tonal options to players.

“Several years ago, I pondered buying a San Dimas, but held off because it didn’t have a tone knob. This edition of the San Dimas finally features that missing knob. But in order to please old-school San Dimas users, the tone knob has a very effective and useful no-load option, which removes the capacitor from the circuit entirely at maximum levels.”

Read the full review, and hear a demo of the Pro-Mod San Dimas Style 1 HH FR here.

Total Guitar Reviews the Pro-Mod Collection

Posted on July 11th, 2016 by Morgan Brunner

Total Guitar magazine reviewed the full lineup of the new Charvel Pro-Mod guitars in its August issue, honoring each of the three new models—So-Cal Style 1 HH FR, San Dimas Style 1 HH FR and San Dimas HH HT—with a “Total Guitar Best Buy” award.

The five-page spread includes a spotlight on Charvel’s history, a highlight of the models and a side-by-side quick glance spec comparison. The breakdown also includes a stellar rating of each instrument for features, sound quality, value for money, build quality and playability. The So-Cal Style 1 HH FR and San Dimas Style 1 HH FR scored a perfect five-star rating across all categories, while the San Dimas HH HT earned five stars in all categories, save for features and value for money, which received four stars.

So with those excellent ratings, here’s the mag’s final verdict:

“Some guitars choose their new owners, and retro metal guitars such as the Charvel Pro-Mods will appeal to a particular type of player. If you need us to spell it out, we’re talking shredders, metalheads and the hair-metal throwbacks. To us, the wide tonal range, flawless playability and choice of tasteful or retina-melting finishes take us back to a fun era to be a guitarist. It was a time of innovation, and Charvel was at the forefront of that. There are countless rock machines out there these days, but few are better than these well-priced Pro-Mods. They are, as Bill and Ted might say, most triumphant…”

Guitar World Features the USA Select Series at Summer NAMM 2016

Posted on July 6th, 2016 by Morgan Brunner

Guitar World visited the FMIC High Performance booth at the Summer NAMM Show in Nashville, Tenn., for a first look at new products arriving this fall from Charvel, Jackson and EVH.

In the video below,  Charvel’s Jon Romanowski introduces the all-new USA Select models that will debut in August.

Watch the clip below, and click here for more details.

Charvel Unveils New Flagship USA Select Series

Posted on June 23rd, 2016 by Chrissy Mauck

Taps Straight Into Original-Era Charvel DNA for High-Performance Players

During this week’s 2016 Summer NAMM Show in Nashville, Tenn., Charvel is unveiling its new flagship USA Select series with the San Dimas® Style 1 HSS FR, San Dimas Style 1 HSS HT, So-Cal Style 1 HSS FR and San Dimas Style 2 HH FR models.

Each gorgeous guitar taps straight into original-era Charvel DNA for a sleek, ferocious model with “old-school throwback” specs our high-performance players have been clamoring for, including ’80s-style body perimeters, finely shaped neck profiles, fast compound radius fingerboards with rolled edges, non-recessed Floyd Rose® bridges, and more.

Available in August, the new USA Select models will be offered in Pitch Black, Satin Plum, Snow Blind Satin and Torred.

Stay tuned to for more product details.

Music Store Live Checks Out the New So-Cal

Posted on March 14th, 2016 by Morgan Brunner


Music Store Live stopped by the Charvel headquarters to talk with Product Manager Matthew Brown about the new 2016 So-Cal models.

In the clip below, Brown runs through the exciting new features that have taken this guitar to another level of tonal versatility, known as the six pack of sound.

The new colors are just as exhilarating as the upgraded features, ranging from Neon Yellow to Neon Pink and Specific Ocean to Slime Green, and more.

Check out the video below featuring guitarist Jordan Ziff (Marty Friedman/Razer).

Guitar World Visits the Charvel Booth at NAMM

Posted on February 23rd, 2016 by Chrissy Mauck

Guitar World popped by the Charvel booth during the 2016 NAMM Show, where they checked out the new for 2016 Pro-Mod Series.

Watch the clip below as Charvel’s Peter Wichers explains some of the new features behind this year’s axes …

Watch Music Store Live’s Demo of the San Dimas HT

Posted on February 16th, 2016 by Chrissy Mauck

Music Store Live swung by Charvel headquarters to get an up-close look at the new Pro-Mod San Dimas HH HT models.

Watch the clip below, featuring a brief run through of the instrument’s key specs and a quick playing demo by guitarist Jordan Ziff.

Master Builder Red Dave on his Bengal Yellow San Dimas

Posted on February 3rd, 2016 by Chrissy Mauck

For his 2016 NAMM showpiece, Master Builder “Red” Dave Nichols built a San Dimas HH and gave it a ferocious Bengal Yellow paint job.

The custom-shop beauty features select alder wood, a quartersawn maple bolt-on neck, 12-16” compound radius maple fingerboard and a pair of Seymour Duncan® humbucking pickups.

Hear from Red Dave in the quick video below …

Premier Guitar Gets a Rundown on the Charvel San Dimas

Posted on February 1st, 2016 by Chrissy Mauck

When Premier Guitar visited the Charvel booth at NAMM, they caught up with product managers Matt Brown and Peter Wichers for a rundown on the new San Dimas guitar.

Watch below to learn more about what’s “under the hood” of these new 2016 San Dimas guitars, and to hear a quick demo of its various pickup combinations.

6 Stunning Charvel Custom Shop Guitars

Posted on January 21st, 2016 by Morgan Brunner

Charvel’s team of Master Builders have created yet another collection of fantastic instruments for the 2016 NAMM Show in Anaheim, Calif.

Here’s a quick look at six stunning Charvel Custom Shop guitars:

San Dimas 2H Bengal Yellow

This ferocious beast was built to roar. Master Builder “Red” Dave Nichols created this ultra-cool cat using select alder wood, a quartersawn maple bolt-on neck, 12-16” compound radius maple fingerboard and a pair of Seymour Duncan® humbucking pickups. The perfectly painted striped body and matching headstock has a realistic ombre effect to its finish, and you can’t help but notice the red Charvel logo on the headstock.

Surfcaster Roasted Pine

The Charvel Surfcaster Roasted Pine is a one-of-a-kind wonder with qualities so unique you can’t help but stare. Master Builder Chip Ellis created a piece of art when he selected this special piece of reclaimed pine wood. The tarnished copper hardware balances and enhances the light and dark tones of the wood for an elegant touch. It features a Jazzmaster bridge, Bigsby tailpiece, gold-foil Lollar pickups, and stainless steel vintage frets.

Style 2 Roasted Pine

In addition to the Surfcaster, Ellis created another model in its likeness. The Style 2 features the same appointments as the Surfcaster with the exception of the pickup configuration; this one comes with a single gold-foiled Loller humbucking pickup. Another distinguished feature includes a unique chicken head style volume knob that sits in the upper bout of the body. The vintage volume knob is an old TV or radio dial that Ellis picked up from a neighborhood antique store.

San Dimas Birdseye Top Ghost Squid Flames

Nearly too hot to handle, this custom built guitar features a brilliant twist on a flame design. The bright red-orange tentacle-like flames fade into a crimson body, making this San Dimas model unlike any other. It’s equipped with a pair of Seymour Duncan® humbucking pickups, a Charvel bass bridge, and a 12-16” compound radius fingerboard. The basswood body has a birdseye maple top that accentuates the unique flame design that much more.

San Dimas HSH Quilt Top

This quilt maple top San Dimas may be beautiful on the outside, but it’s also a beast built to destroy. Packed with direct mount Seymour Duncan® pickups, this hum-single-hum monster is a force to be reckoned with, just like Nichols intended. Other standout features include a Floyd Rose® Bridge, Schaller tuning machines, a wheel-adjust truss rod, and a bolt-on wenge neck.

San Dimas 7-String Korina Walnut Top

Nichols was holding on to this stunning piece of wood for quite a while, waiting for the perfect design to strike him. It’s easy to see why he became so attached to the elegant markings that make this guitar a knockout. This 7-string beauty features dual Bare Knuckle Coldsweat 7 pickups, a Hipshot® hardtail 7 bridge, Schaller® tuning machines, and a quartersawn bolt-on maple neck.


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