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2001 Kramer FR422


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I just wanted to Check-in after 10+ years of owning 2 2001 Kramer FR422's and say that they are great guitars. I have owned 80s Kramers so I have a basis of comparison. The Gibson/Kramers are every bit as good as the originals. Don't be fooled by the BS about the Licensed Floyd Roses not being as good as the originals. Not true the FRs on the 422s stay in tune as well as the originals. Don't be fooled by the BS about the Quad Rails & Dual Rails not being good. I have a variety of Gibson, Duncan & Dimarzios installed in my guitars. The Gibson/Kramer rails may not be quite as good as the aforementioned but they are pretty damn close.



To be 100% Objective, I did a comparision of all my Kramers:




I did not include my 422 Evo in the mix and I only evaluated in the middle position because I wanted the comparision to be of the overall balance of all the PUPs. The best sound is the Showster hands down. I am a SuperStrat fan and the Showster has the best overall SuperStrat sound probably because it has single coils but I think Excellente was on to something with the metal loading.


I wish that Gibson would re-issue the Showster but I doubt that it will ever happen.


Next best is the ProAxe of course. Excellent Pups in this baby.


And yes the 422 Stock comes in 3rd, but not bad for a guitar that I only paid $170 for new.




Not even close. The Showster has best sustain hands down. Years ago I timed the sustain on all my guitars. Of course, my Gibson Les Paul had the best sustain but the Showster came in second followed by my Doubleneck. Excellente's metal loading made a big difference because the Showster has the thinest body of any of my guitars but the best sustain next to my LP. It must be the metal loading. Surprisely my 422s have almost as much sustain as my ProAxe.




This was a close call because I love the ProAxe Ebony fretboard but I don't like the reverse headstock. I prefer the 22 Fret Neck on the Showster, but I like the maple Fretboard on the 422 better than the rosewood on the Showster. I like the shape of the ProAxe and Showster necks better than the 422s but the 422 neck is pretty damn close.




Not even close. Showster hands down. The ultra thin body on the Showster is simply the best guitar body that I have ever felt, seen or played.




Not even close, the 422s have the best finish of any of my Kramers. The Metallic Red Paint is dazzling. If inspected by the anal retentive among us, I am sure they would find slight imperfections in the body cavities that would drive them crazy but most people think my 422s are the best looking guitars that I own and I own some good looking Fenders and Gibsons.




This is not a fair comparision because I installed the Dimarzio EVO in my #1 422, but the EVO is my favorite PUP for a SuperStrat. Vai knows his stuff! Next fav PUP Trembucker, then JB.




The Switches and pots on the ProAxe & Showster feel more solid, but I prefer the coil tap on the 422s.




I saved this for last since I know certain people are going to freak out but I prefer the Trem on the 422s. Why? because my 422s almost always stay in tune while I have to fine tune my ProAxe and Showster. No big deal and maybe it is because the ProAxe and Showster Trems are 10+ years older, but it is a simple objective fact that my 422s stay more precisely in tune.

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Found this FR 424 review over at Vintage Kramer. Not a 422 but the reviewer had great things to say about the Quads, the Neck, the Body & yes even the LFR:




"I had long been a critic of Musicyo making guitars that weren’t in line with the old Kramer production models. I had questioned the price, and immediately dismissed these guitars as cheap import models that compared to the overseas Jackson, Ibanez, or ESP models. I have been convinced I was totally wrong; I was very delighted when I first tried out the Striker Custom. Not only is it a great value for the money, it looks sharp too!


The body features a thin profile compared to most standard thickness bodies. It has the “thinness” of an Ibanez model, however, it does have a little more wood. The shape is reminiscent of the old Kramer Stagemasters...


The neck is stellar... very comfortable in the hands of an old Kramer die-hard like me. Immediately after I discovered the familiarity, I got out my maple on maple banana headstock neck from 1985. They compare almost identically except for the addition of the 2 frets on the Striker model It reminds me so much of my 85 Baretta that if I shut my eyes, I’d swear that’s what I was playing...


The Quad Rail pickups... have a nice “hot” sound that compares to my Dimarzio Tone Zone that I have installed in another guitar... when I engaged the D-Tuna and used the bridge Quad Rail, it was "balls to the wall" all the way. It rocks!!!


The licensed Floyd Rose is pretty darn sturdy ... with bridge saddles that match an Original Floyd Rose. The setup on the bridge was excellent too; it features a perfect spring tension to make dive bombs and vibrato effortless..."

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