What Guitar Does Dimebag Darrell Use?

Dimebag Darrell Pedal Guide

Here is the exact guitar and model used by Dimebag Darrell, perhaps one of the greatest metal guitarists to ever walk the stage (plus details on how to buy similar but cheaper alternatives)…



Step into the world of shredding royalty with the exact guitar model wielded by the legendary Dimebag Darrell, a titan among metal guitarists whose presence on stage was as electrifying as his riffs.

We’re diving into the details of the iconic axe that helped Dimebag tear through the sound barrier, and for those who idolize his sound but juggle a tighter budget, we’ve got the scoop on more affordable alternatives that don’t skimp on that metal mojo.

Let’s go!

What Guitar Did Dimebag Darrell Use?

The Answer

Dimebag Darrell was the influential guitarist of Pantera and Damageplan, known for his lightning fast solos and heavy, grooving riffs. Darrell’s guitar of choice was the Dean Razorback.

His main guitar was a red Dean Razorback fitted with a Floyd Rose tremolo bridge, Seymour Duncan pickups, and his trademark “Dimebag” graphics.

This razor shape suited Darrell’s aggressive thrash and groove metal style. The pointed shape allowed easy access to the upper frets for solos and squeals.

Other notable Dean guitars Dimebag used include ML models, V’s, and Z models.

However, the Dean Razorback remained his go-to both live and in the studio through his entire career. Dean even released several signature “Dimebag Razorback” models built to Darrell’s specs.

Where to Buy:

Here’s all the best options for buying a Dean Custom Shop Dimebolt Razorback or – if you’re on a stricter budget – the best current alternative (according to our in-house guitar tech / guru, Christopher Horten):

The Evolution of Dimebag Darrell’s Guitar Arsenal: From Hofner to Iconic Dean

dimebag and jimi hendrix in heaven

Key Takeaways

  • 🎸 Early Beginnings: Dimebag Darrell’s musical journey began with a Hofner Les Paul copy on his 11th birthday.
  • 🎶 Dream Guitar: By age 15, he acquired his dream guitar, the Dean ML, receiving two on the same day.
  • 🏆 Iconic Instrument: The “Dean from Hell,” one of his Dean ML guitars, rose to fame after a brief separation.
  • 🤝 Expanding Collection: In 1994, Dimebag expanded his collection with Washburn, introducing unique designs like “Rebel” and “Snakeskin.”
  • 🔊 Signature Amplifier: Known for using the Randall R100ES on “Cowboys from Hell,” and his signature Randall Warhead.
  • 🎛️ Effect Pedals: He used a variety of guitar effects, with the Wah and Digitech WH-1 Whammy being pivotal in his sound.
  • 🔄 Evolving Gear: Over the years, his gear list, including notable guitars, amps, and effects, evolved, shaping his legendary tone and style.

Dimebag Darrell, a name synonymous with revolutionary guitar playing, began his journey with a humble Hofner Les Paul copy. This guitar, a gift on his 11th birthday, was the first step in his path to becoming a guitar legend.

By age 15, Darrell transitioned to his dream guitar, the Dean ML. In an almost serendipitous twist of fate, he received not one, but two Dean ML guitars on the same day.

One was a gift, and the other, a testament to his budding talent, was a prize won in a contest. Among these, the “Dean from Hell” stands out. After a brief separation from Darrell, this guitar became his signature instrument, etching its name in the annals of rock history.

In 1994, Dimebag expanded his guitar arsenal significantly. This expansion came as a result of a deal with Washburn, leading to the creation of unique designs like the “Rebel” and “Snakeskin” guitars.

These designs not only showcased Dimebag’s personal style but also his desire to push the boundaries of conventional guitar design.

When it comes to amplifiers, Dimebag is best known for his use of the Randall R100ES, particularly on the iconic album “Cowboys from Hell.”

His signature sound later evolved with the development of his own Randall Warhead amp, a model that became as synonymous with Dimebag as his ferocious playing style.

Dimebag’s gear list wasn’t complete without a mention of his guitar effects. Among them, the Wah and Digitech WH-1 Whammy pedals were significant in shaping his unique sound.

These effects added a new dimension to his playing, allowing him to explore sonic landscapes that were previously uncharted in heavy metal music.

As his career progressed, Dimebag’s gear list continued to evolve. This evolution was not just a testament to his growth as a musician but also a reflection of his never-ending quest to refine and redefine his sound.

Each piece of gear, be it a guitar, an amp, or an effect pedal, contributed uniquely to his legendary tone and style, leaving an indelible mark on the world of music.

Dimebag Darrell’s Guitar Collection

YearGearSignificance
Pre-15Hofner Les Paul CopyFirst guitar, beginning of his musical journey
Age 15Dean ML (x2)Received as a gift and contest prize; includes “Dean from Hell”
1994Washburn GuitarsUnique designs like “Rebel” and “Snakeskin”
VariousRandall R100ES & WarheadSignature amplifiers, pivotal in his sound
VariousEffect Pedals (Wah, WH-1 Whammy)Key to his unique sound and style

What Makes The Dean Razorback So Special?

Dean Dimebag Razorback

The main reason that the Dean Razorback is so special is that it was designed by Dimebag Darrell. He worked on and helped workout every aspect of its shape, electronics, and components. Everything was built to his exact requirements.

If you’re a fan of Pantera or want to create something similar to Dimebag’s legendary tone, the Dean Razorback is the quickest shortcut for doing so. You’ll also need a killer amp setup and some pedals (here’s the pedals used by Dimebag himself).

But a solid guitar, built to Dime specifications, is a great place to start if you’re after that late-1990s Pantera-style guitar tone.

The Dean Razorback comes with a bold V-shaped contour, aggressive pointy edges, and distinctive split headstock. The pickups? It comes equipped with a Seymour Duncan SH-13 Dimebucker in the bridge and a Seymour Duncan 59 in the neck.

Here’s what puts the Dean Razorback in a league of its own:

  • Striking Aesthetics: The Razorback boasts an audacious design. Its V-shape and pointed edges are eye-catching, while the split headstock adds an extra edge.
  • Dynamic Sound Range: Known for its versatility, the Razorback delivers everything from heavy metal power chords to high-flying solos with a bright, crisp tone and robust sustain.
  • Dimebag Darrell’s Legacy: As the brainchild of the guitar virtuoso, the Razorback is highly coveted. Dime put is his heart and soul into this guitar which makes it quite unlike anything else on the market.

Of course, the elephant in the room here is that the Dean Razorback is perhaps one of the ugliest guitars you’ll ever see.

Beauty resides in the eye of the beholder – and this is even more true when it comes to guitar styles and design – so, please, do not take this as a slight on Darrell, I love the guy and his music, but this guitar? Woof!

While the Dean Razorback ain’t pretty, it can certainly rip it up with the best of them when it comes to blistering lead and heavy, chuggy rhythm guitar.

jim root charvel guitar

Me? I’ve never been a fan of V-shaped guitars, BC Rich-style “metal” guitars, or, sadly… Dime’s Dean guitars either.

Jim Root’s signature models (pictured above) are WAY more my style and speed. Classic designs with a modern twist and extremely hot pickups. For me, that’s the ultimate style for an electric guitar.

Still if Dean guitars are your thang, and plenty of people do love these types of guitar, you really cannot go wrong with one of Darrell’s signature models.

Of course, the custom shop model is hella pricey. But the Dean Razorback DB is way more accessible – you’re looking at in and around $450 (and it is packing some killer specs too).

Exact Model vs Cheaper Alternative

Dime’s Exact Model
  • Pros:
    • Solid mahogany body
    • Set-in mahogany neck with “V” profile
    • Pau ferro fingerboard with 22 jumbo frets
    • Seymour Duncan SH-13 Dimebucker bridge pickup
    • Seymour Duncan 59 neck pickup
    • Floyd Rose 1000 tremolo system
The Cheaper Alternative
  • Pros:
    • Set-neck construction for enhanced resonance and sustain
    • Seymour Duncan Dimebucker pickup for aggressive and powerful tone
    • Grover locking tremolo system for stability and expressiveness
    • Limited-edition collectible status
    • Endorsed and designed by metal legend Dimebag Darrell
Dime’s Exact Model
Pros:
  • Solid mahogany body
  • Set-in mahogany neck with “V” profile
  • Pau ferro fingerboard with 22 jumbo frets
  • Seymour Duncan SH-13 Dimebucker bridge pickup
  • Seymour Duncan 59 neck pickup
  • Floyd Rose 1000 tremolo system
The Cheaper Alternative
Pros:
  • Set-neck construction for enhanced resonance and sustain
  • Seymour Duncan Dimebucker pickup for aggressive and powerful tone
  • Grover locking tremolo system for stability and expressiveness
  • Limited-edition collectible status
  • Endorsed and designed by metal legend Dimebag Darrell

Absolute Beginner? No problem.

Learn how to 10x your guitar playing, use all the latest gear, and record like a professional – all from the comfort of your bedroom!

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