We have covered a ton of new guitar models this year. But the Schecter SVSS Exotic is the first new model we have seen from Schecter this year, so far. Let’s take a look two of the first of the new offerings from Schecter for 2021!
Schecter SVSS Exotic: Taking The Super Shredder To The Next Level!
Due to Covid, there have been some serious manufacturing problems in the world of guitars. We saw several companies like ESP, Ibanez, and Cort show off what they have to offer for 2021. This was mostly during the Winter NAMM period, and even though some lineups were limited, most companies had a least a few models.
Except Schecter. So what happened?
The truth is: We aren’t exactly sure what is going on, except that Covid is probably responsible. I waited out the Winter NAMM period for any news of new models from Schecter, and I never got a solid answer.
Schecter has long been a huge company when it comes to making solid, Metal guitars built for speed and shred. Unfortunately, the past year the California company has been mostly silent about the new lineup for 2021. That is, until now. We are finally getting a look at the Schecter SVSS Exotic, and if this is any indication of the designs that are coming for Summer NAMM, we are in for a real treat!
So what is an “SVSS”? The SVSS series, or “Sun Valley Super Shredder”, is meant to be a tribute to the old-school, parts-caster shred machines from the 1980’s. These are stripped down and ready to play some blazing fast leads. They were originally equipped with EMG pickups and Floyd Rose bridges. Not to mention, they come in some really cool 80’s inspired colors!
These original SVSS models were a huge hit, and well received by the guitar community. This was mostly due to being feature packed guitars that were reasonably priced, at $899.00 retail. That’s not bad at all for a guitar with name brand hardware. But what if we upped the budget just a little bit, and used some exotic woods?
Schecter SVSS Exotic: Features and Design Overview
The new Schecter SVSS Exotic series currently has two models that were just released. Both models use premium woods this time around, while the original series used more traditional woods, like Maple and Alder. The new Schecter SVSS Exotic still retains the same features that made the original series so cool, but with a few modifications.
These newer models still have the same feel and spirit as the original SVSS. They both sport bolt-on necks, and Floyd Rose bridges ready for some serious dive bombing action. The features that are new, I feel like are valid improvements. Both models have:
- Wenge necks
- Black Limba Bodies
- Ebony Fretboards
- Floyd Rose 1500 Bridges
- Schecter Custom Shop Pickups
- 24 Jumbo Stainless Frets
- Compound Radius Fretboard 12”-16”
- Volume/Tone/5-Way Switch
- Luminlay Glow in the Dark Inlays
- Carbon Fiber Reinforcement Truss Rods
- Grover Tuners
There are a few things that separate the two new models, but they are mostly aesthetic features. The Black Limba Model seen above has a few different design choices, such as the Black Limba body wood. It also features uncovered zebra style pickups and matching cream control knobs.
Black Limba is an interesting choice for a body wood, as it is usually used in guitar necks. It should be pretty lightweight as a body wood. The top is also Black Limba, and looks like it has a very light finish, almost open pore.
The Schecter SVSS Exotic Ziricote model has a few aesthetic differences from it’s brother. This model has the same Black Limba bosy, but with a dark Ziricote top. This model also has the same Schecter Custom Shop pickups, but this time they have black covers. The hardware this time is black metal, both the knobs and the 5 way switch.
Schecter SVSS Exotic Series: A Closer Look At The Features
Both of these models have a ton of features for the money, it’s hard to find a place to start! These new SVSS models share the same DNA as the original lineup, but Schecter really put every feature they could into the new models.
The Floyd Rose 1500 Bridge is a fantastic feature to start with. Most guitars under a certain price point come with the Floyd Rose Special, which is a bridge that I don’t even think should exist. The Special models are notoriously known for being unreliable and I think that turns some people off of these bridges for the rest of their lives. This makes me kind of sad, because a proper Floyd, that is well set up, can be a fantastic tool!
The 1500 series is exclusive to Schecter and takes all of the worry out of using a “budget” Floyd Rose. This is as close to the “real deal” that you can get on a budget guitar.
The 1500 Series has some of the cheaper parts of a “Special” model. That is…except where it counts! The posts, screws, and other potentially fragile parts are made of solid stainless steel. This stops the parts from stripping out, or becoming worn. You also get a “push in” trem arm instead of the cumbersome screw collar version of the Special or 1000 series.
The Custom Shop Pickups have replaced the EMG Retroactive set from the original SVSS. Both Schecter SVSS Exotic models have the Sunset Strip/Pasadena Custom shop Pickups. I assure you, these are not cheap imitation pickups. I’ve talked about them before in my review of another Schecter model.
These are very well designed, high output humbuckers! Personally I think they fit the SVSS series much better than the EMG set did. This is supposed to be a full on shred machine right? These pickups are also great in split coil mode, and you can get some really great Fender type sounds out of them. This is done with the 5 way switch on these models, with the “in between” selections being the split modes.
Schecter SVSS Exotic: Is The New Price Worth The New Features?
So here is the catch with the new lineup: They are more expensive than the original SVSS models. The Schecter SVSS Exotic sits at about $1199.00 retail. So we are looking at roughly 300 more dollars than your plain Schecter SVSS. Do I think the upgrades are worth it?
These are gorgeous guitars to start with. The exotic woods used for the entire guitar is a fresh approach that other companies are not using at all. But beyond just the aesthetics, I like the passive pickups as opposed to the EMG pickups on the original line. I feel like passive pickups fit the theme a little better.
Stainless steel frets, and the glow in the dark inlays may sound like a gimmick. But I own one guitar with stainless frets, and I have never had to do any maintenance on the frets. I don’t even polish them! This is a huge upgrade, and I am happy to see so many companies switching to SS frets.
To be honest, I’m just happy to see Schecter finally releasing something new for 2021! I am a Schecter player, through and through. I wonder what they have in store for us during Summer NAMM? We will be checking out the new models as they are released.
Is the Schecter SVSS Exotic worth it?
The upgrades are definitely worth the price increase when you factor in the custom shop pickups, stainless steel frets, and proper Floyd Rose. Not mention the cool new exotic woods!
Is the new Schecter SVSS Exotic a bolt on guitar?
Yes, and the neck carve is very slim for easy access!
What pickups come in the Schecter SVSS Exotic?
Sunset Strip/Pasadena Custom Shop Pickups. These are made in the USA and are very high output. Both pickups are coil tappable as well!
Christoper HortonChristopher has been playing guitar and piano for 27 years. He has been active in the professional music industry for over two decades. He has toured for years with several bands and music projects. He worked in LA as a studio musician and engineer working with bands like IAMSOUND, Baroness, Kylesa, Black Tusk, Reflux, and Tripping Daisy. In between giving private lessons, he is recording a solo album for 2022-2023. Christopher plays Schecter guitars, BOSS amplifiers, and uses STL Tones in the studio.
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