Recently, everyone has been talking about Glarry guitars and basses. But are they good for the low price? Today we go over the pros and cons of the 2023 lineup.
Glarry Guitars And Basses 2023 Lineup: Quality VS Price
Glarry Guitars And Basses: Let’s Talk Quality…
We have been taking a look at the newer Glarry guitars and basses, and the 2022-2023 lineup has seen some improvements over some of the older models. That being said, we were definitely impressed with the older GST model that we received for review.
It can be hard to believe, but you can buy a fully functioning guitar for less money than I spent on a night out last weekend! Sure, the quality of the hardware is a weak point, but that is easily fixed with some cheap upgrades.
In fact, our Glarry GST guitar upgrades only cost a total of $44. So we are still less invested than a Squier or Epiphone, with fully upgraded parts! But even out of the box, with a few tweaks and a string change the GST was ready to play.
I’m no shill for Glarry or anything, and none of the Glarry guitars I have played compare to my more expensive instruments. Let’s be real, here.
I know that Glarry guitars and basses are a divisive topic in the community, and I get it. When you play the Glarry right next to a $1500 guitar, the difference is going to be very obvious. But put the Glarry next to a Squier Bullet, you will have a hard time telling the difference.
All of these budget companies use the same generic hardware, and even source a lot of the same woods from the same places. Glarry just cuts out the middle man, and if you look on Amazon, many other brands are made by Glarry under another name.
I personally purchased the Glarry GJazz Bass for my home studio, as I needed a cheap bass with single coil pickups. This bass was great for the money, and it sparked my interest in Glarry guitars and basses as a company. Hence, the recent deep-dive I have been doing on these products.
The fact that we can buy a guitar or bass for less than the cost of a video game is pretty cool. There are tons of budget brands out there, and it has never been easier to get into playing guitar. Glarry is a great way to test the waters if you are a new player on a budget.
But there are some newer models that have just now hit the market, and while the price is slightly higher than the original Glarry guitars and basses lineup, these have some really great features. New features like short scale guitars and set-neck construction are rarely seen on lower budget brands.
These newer models are doing some serious quality upgrades in both construction, and transparent finishes. The new Glarry GMF and GIZ102 guitars are totally different from what most brands offer, while the GIB and GP PRO basses are also a step up from previous quality.
Are Glarry Guitars And Basses Good Quality For Their Low Price?
The older Glarry guitars and basses seem to have mixed reviews, but we have had a great experience when it comes to the quality for their low price. These are fully functional, full-size electric guitars and basses. Glarry customer service is also excellent, with warehouses in the UK and United States to fulfil warranty issues.
When it comes to the newer Glarry guitars and basses, the quality has definitely gone up for the low price. The newer models offer transparent finishes, new inlays, short-scale, better cables/accessories, and set-neck construction. So the quality for the price has definitely become a better bargain than some mainstream brands.
So today we are going to take a look at some of these new models that offer better quality for the low prices that put Glarry guitars and basses on the map. These newer models are a step in the right direction for Glarry, so let’s check out what the budget brand has to offer.
The Glarry GIZ102: Neck-Thru Double Cut Design
The newer Glarry GIZ102 is probably the best example of the quality you get for such a low price when it comes to the new lineup. This is a neck-thru construction, dual humbucker rock machine and it has been getting some great reviews.
Glarry guitars and basses are usually based on a popular model, but the GIZ102 is a little bit different. Yeah, it looks a little like an SG, but it also looks like one of the Ibanez AX models. Either way, it is totally different from the bolt-on guitars we associate with Glarry.
For the last few years, Glarry has really only made “Fender-inspired” instruments, with the exception of the “Burning Fire” model. Most of these had a Basswood body, with a Maple neck. The Glarry GIZ is a totally different direction.
First, it has a Poplar wood body, which makes the guitar a little bit heavier than previous models. But Poplar is not a very common body wood, so it acts a little bit like Mahogany when it comes to weight. The body has a nice bevel to it, which feels comfortable when you’re playing.
The pickups are very high output, measuring out at about 11k each. These have really great clarity for “stock” humbuckers. They sound great clean, as well as with a little dirt on them.
The neck is really interesting, since the scale is 24.75” but the neck radius is 9.5 like a Fender! I have never seen a neck with these specs before, but it seems to work really well. You would usually see a 12” radius on this scale length.
The neck has some great looking Pearloid-style inlays, and medium jumbo frets which is also a new feature. Topping all of this off is a bone nut, instead of the generic plastic. The nut is where most tuning issues happen, so this is a good thing, since bone is much harder than plastic.
If you plan on changing out anything, regular metric hardware can be found just about anywhere. This guitar would be a KILLER platform for mods, and would even make for a great backup guitar. It feels a little like an SG with the double-cut design, but is also feels very modern.
The Ibanez AX that this guitar resembles is about $80 more for the lowest model when it comes to price. Playing the two side by side? It is barely noticeable which one is different, and the sound is very much the same as well. So if the name on the headstock isn’t an issue with you, go for the Glarry.
The bone nut, set-neck design, and the fun finishes are a step in the right direction for Glarry when it comes to the quality and low price. The new amp cable that comes with this guitar is a vintage braided style, which is much better than the usual cables you get with budget guitars.
Short Scale And Extended Range
Glarry guitars and basses have made some interesting designs when it comes to short scale instruments, and I have yet to try any of these yet. The Glarry GMF guitar is a short scale design that is famous for being something many players prefer, especially beginners.
Kurt Cobain was a big fan of the Fender Mustang, and the Glarry GMF takes that design and changes a few things, while keeping the desired short scale. The frets being so much closer together on a 24” scale guitar makes chord changes easier.
But some people just prefer the 24” scale because they have smaller hands. This style of guitar was originally designed with younger students in mind. But it is just as popular with adult players of all genres.
The GMF has all of the familiar switches, and dual single coil pickups that you would find on a vintage guitar of this type. The difference being the switches are just simple “on/off” controls for each pickup, NOT the three-way switch you would expect.
Overall, if you have ever wanted to try out a short scale guitar, whether it is for comfort reasons or alternate high tunings, the Glarry GMF is a good place to start. Likewise, it is a great guitar for younger beginners that may have small hands.
The GIB Bass is a little bit of an anomaly! I have never seen Glarry venture into extended range instruments before, and a 6 string bass is a great first experiment. If you were wondering, a 6 string bass is tuned with a low B, and a high C that gives you tons of range.
The dual humbuckers are a nice touch as well for the GIB Bass, giving you a huge amount of tonal control. They look like active pickups, but they are definitely passive. The low B string is absolutely BOOMING through an Ampeg amp sim!
Many players find the extended range of a 6 string bass extremely liberating. The low string can keep up with just about any heavy, low tuning. Not only do you get the low end of a 5 string, but the higher strings can be used for fast runs, and chord shapes.
The GIB Bass would be a great way to dip your toes into the extended range world, without having to drop a lot of money. Most 6 string basses cost a good bit of money, so the Glarry is a great way to see if you are ready to break the confines of a 4 string bass.
Again, both would be a great mod platform if you ended up liking the guitar, and we have all the specs you need in one article when it comes to parts that fit. Most Glarry guitars and basses use metric parts that you can find used for cheap.
Transparent Finishes & Super-Strats?
Glarry guitars and basses have always had a ton of color options, but a flame veneer is definitely new for the company. The Glarry GST HH is a newer model with not only a transparent finish, but also a slimmer neck.
One of the biggest complaints when it comes to Glarry guitars is usually the neck. People often compare it to the older Tele style necks, or Les Paul baseball bats. While the usual Glarry neck is on the thicker side, I think there is some exaggeration here.
While I like a thick neck, myself, you wouldn’t expect to see that on a dual humbucker shred-style guitar. I am happy to report that the GST HH has a much slimmer neck that is in-line with this guitar style.
This is your standard Super-Strat style guitar, with dual humbuckers and a three way switch. It has a trem, but I would totally block it and make this a “fixed” bridge guitar. This would solve any tuning issues, and make the guitar great for down-tuning.
I certainly appreciate the more “standard” bridge over a cheap Floyd Rose replica, since those are usually a nightmare to deal with. Just block the trem and make it a fixed bridge guitar! The humbuckers are very high output, so it is primed for shredding.
The new lineup didn’t forget about bassists though! The Glarry GP PRO Bass also comes in some cool transparent finishes, with a slimmer neck. We also get a full maple neck/fretboard with some big block inlays.
The pickguard has been removed, and I think that makes the bass look a little more sleek. Like the newer GST guitar, the neck got an overhaul as well. The maple with black inlays, along with the new finishes is definitely the selling point here.
This gives the bass a striking look, and the neck certainly feels slimmer than my GJazz bass. You get a single split pickup and a single volume and tone knob setup. This may seem like it may limit the amount of tones, but that’s the point. This bass is sleek, and simple.
Glarry guitars and basses have definitely made some interesting changes with these newer models! I hope the company continues in this direction, making upgrades and adjustments while keeping the prices low. Make a 7 string guitar Glarry, we would love to see that!
Are Glarry Guitars And Basses Good Quality For Their Low Price?
In my opinion, yes. But there are some caveats when it comes to Glarry, and you need to take a few things into account. The first being, almost every guitar or bass from ANY company is going to need some tweaks right out of the box.
But needing some work right out of the box is not exclusive to Glarry by any means. MOST guitars and basses are going to need a few adjustments right out of the box. There are definitely exceptions to this rule with PRS and Schecter, but most guitars under $1000 are going to need something fixed or tweaked.
But these adjustments are easy to do with tools you probably already have at home, and the tools that you might not have? Guitars and basses come with those tools that you need, usually wrenches. If you can make a few measurements and then adjust accordingly, then you can get a guitar/bass playing well.
It honestly isn’t rocket science when it comes to doing regular guitar maintenance, and doing simple things like setting string height and intonating your instrument are easy to learn. If you are completely lost? There are videos all over the internet that will walk you though the process, step by step.
Glarry guitars and basses are great for beginners, but they are also great for anyone who wants to learn how to mod guitars. For people that want to mod the guitar, the quality is going to be whatever you are capable of doing!
But right out of the box, you just need to do a few things to get ANY guitar playing well. Glarry guitars and basses come with the same hardware and pickups that most budget brands use. This makes hardware easy to swap out or replace if you want.
The quality is absolutely there with the newer Glarry models, and you can find tons of content where guitarists have used their Glarry to record songs. In fact, I will be doing the same thing myself.
Stay tuned to what we do to the Electrikjam Glarry GST! The mods are already started, and I am filming the entire process. I think I can turn this Glarry into a great guitar with just a few easy mods. In fact, I KNOW I am going to turn this guitar into something special.
So the quality with Glarry guitars and basses is good for the price you are paying, and this is a case where you definitely get what you pay for. Your experience with Glarry is going to be up to you! Personally, I really like mine, and it will be even better when I am done with it.
Are Glarry Guitars And Basses Good Quality For Their Low Price?
In most experiences, yes. We have had a great experience when it comes to the quality for their low price. These are fully functional, full-size electric guitars and basses. Glarry customer service is also excellent, with warehouses in the UK and United States to fulfil warranty issues.
Are Glarry Guitars And Basses Good For Mods?
Absolutely! Glarry guitars and basses use common metric parts that can be found all over the internet. Likewise, many Fender/Squier parts also fit Glarry guitars and basses. Glarry products make for a great mod platform.
Christoper HortonChristopher has been playing guitar, bass, and piano for 28 years. He has been active in the professional music industry for over two decades. Chris has toured for years with several bands and music projects across the United States. He worked in Los Angeles as a studio musician and engineer working with many genres, but mainly Pop, Rock, and Metal. In between giving private lessons, he is usually recording under his various projects at home in Georgia. Christopher plays Schecter Guitars, BOSS Amplifiers, and uses STL Tones in the studio.
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