Perhaps it’s the sheer affordability of the Pacer Vintage that makes it such an enticing instrument. During the shred boom of the mid- 1980s, Kramer was the #1 selling electric guitar brand in the world, and its fast, powerful designs set the pace for countless other makers to follow. Right out of the box it looks great and no cosmetic issues at all. Is that the classic Seymour Duncan JB/JN set? Indeed it is – very similar to the pointy headstock on the SM-1 but rounded at the end, originally introduced in 1984 and commonly known as the banana or hockey stick headstock. In this case, very much so. It’s a three-way mini-toggle found beneath the bridge volume knob. The Kramer Pacer guitar's beak headstock and classic 80s block logo top off this classic Kramer with a locking nut to keep you in tune. In most cases, clearer highs and more power from the thinner strings while retaining the right kind of warmth for the higher gauges – effectively giving you more note articulation across the board. And while we’re on the subject of range, you might have noticed 24 frets instead of 22. And at the center of it all, the Kramer Pacer was the cornerstone model. Then again, it’s worth remembering this is an instrument aimed at rock players who mainly live on the bridge, except for clean sections and solos high up the neck. All rights reserved. This latest collection is certainly worthy of the brand’s heritage, with wild finishes and no options for fixed bridges. The headstocks of Pacers, like most Kramer guitars, went through a series of changes. From 1981 to 1982, Pacers had headstocks that were almost identical to that of a Fender Stratocaster. It looks totally killer and plays like a dream once you set it up right. The most metal axe in the Original Collection? Why, yes it is – and they’re still hard to beat for rock tones. Again, the Van Halen connection is strong here – much like the single-pickup 5150 guitar he himself assembled at the Kramer factory and his original homemade Frankenstrat with the angled Gibson PAF – it’s a thunderously uncomplicated workhorse. The option to split two of the humbuckers allows for true single-coil sizzle, whereas options to tap into parallel usually result in a sound somewhere in between. Please make sure that you are posting in the form of a question. The Kramer Pacer is a guitar series made by Kramer Guitars from the beginning of the Kramer wooden neck period to the company’s bankruptcy in 1990. There was an error retrieving your Wish Lists. Really nice quality guitar for the price. Pretty much – and it continues to be one of the best-selling Kramers out there. Isn’t that Richie Sambora’s old signature? Interestingly, both of these models are made entirely out of maple – which, in conjunction with Seymours, makes for bright tones with no shortage of attack to cut through. From 1981 to 1982, Pacers had headstocks that were almost identical to that of a Fender Stratocaster. After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in. There was a problem completing your request. Blackstar Electric Guitar Mini Amplifier, Black (FLY3). While the other instruments in this round-up have a flat 14” fingerboard radius, this particular model is even flatter still at 16” – which makes it incredibly playable. The Baretta Vintage would be a great choice for rhythm players, particularly those who deal in rock, punk and thrash. Later, the headstock took on a "pointy" profile, similar to that of the competitors of the day. And at the center of it all, the Kramer Pacer was the cornerstone model. Introduced in 1986 when Kramer were upping production, the pointy headstock is among their most classic – also appearing in the form of pearloid inlays. It all came to an end in 1991 – flannel was in, spandex was out. While the Modern collection explores Kramer-style interpretations of traditional Gibson body shapes, such as the Les Paul and Flying V, the Originals are a bold resurrection of the 80s Superstrats that typified an era of thrilling guitar acrobatics. I obviously had to set it up because the Floyd was raised up but once it's set up it plays great. Top subscription boxes – right to your door, © 1996-2020,, Inc. or its affiliates. Better still, each volume control doubles up as series/parallel switch for its pickup, and there’s a 002mf capacitor bleed circuit to retain treble frequencies when volumes are down. The tremolo is recessed which means you can pull more in pitch – you can get close by tilting the bridge on a non-recessed guitar, but having less physical space to play with will always result in less range. It’s easy to see why, this is a Superstrat that feels more like an actual Strat – the elliptical C-profile neck feels meatier, there’s a five-way selector and the body is made out of alder, which is more rounded than the maple-bodied Pacers. This was made from 1982–84 and is often referred to as the "chicken" or "beak" headstock. Bath It was made between 1986 and 1989. (Total Guitar) 08 October 2020. I plan to use it for shows every week and definitely upgrade the pickups to Seymour Duncan jbs, Reviewed in the United States on October 25, 2014. Your recently viewed items and featured recommendations, Select the department you want to search in. Sign up below to get the latest from Total Guitar, plus exclusive special offers, direct to your inbox! Instead, our system considers things like how recent a review is and if the reviewer bought the item on Amazon. Its deep warmth is offset by the snappiness of the ebony fingerboard. It is available in Pearl White and Candy Red. The Jersey Star is the most expensive offering in this line-up and with any group test we have to ask ourselves, is it worth the extra money? The Pacer Custom had two hums and was made between 1981 and 82. Receive news and offers from our other brands? It certainly is – and even comes in a finish called Maximum Steel. This shopping feature will continue to load items when the Enter key is pressed. Please try again. But the old Sambora signature really does trump this round-up on sheer class alone, boasting versatility and effortless playability. The following decade led to some fruitful partnerships and a host of high-quality instruments renowned for uncompromising playability. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better Floyd-equipped Superstrat under £700, especially considering the custom aesthetics of the tiger striped Orange Burst and the inclusion of real Seymours instead of anything outsourced or ‘Duncan Designed’. It’s interesting how Kramer – a company that took a sizeable chunk out of Les Paul sales over the 80s – now find themselves being brought back to life by Gibson. This model also features no less than 13 stars and – thanks to the JS truss rod cover – will leave your friends mistakenly wondering how you got your hands on an incredibly rare Joe Satriani prototype! The action needed to be lowered a little bit, so I set it up and now it shreds. Then, when Fender threatened to sue, they changed to a head known as the classic head. The Pacer Carrera had two black hums and was made from 1982 to 1986. It was made between 1983 and 1987. Doesn’t that middle humbucker get in the way? In 2010, Kramer released the Kramer Pacer Classic, a H-H guitar with a locking tremolo. Unable to add item to List. Though the company dates back to the mid-70s when it was mainly specialising in aluminium neck basses, it was a chance encounter between co-founder Dennis Berardi and Eddie Van Halen’s management on a flight in 1981 that led to the virtuoso teaming up with Kramer. The Pacer Standard had 1 hum and was also made from 1981 to 82. The Baretta Vintage would be a great choice for rhythm players, particularly those who deal in rock, punk and thrash. The mahogany body and neck through of the SM-1, however, is aimed at a more of a darker-sounding metallic shredder – with higher output in the neck and a trem cavity. There’s an elegance to its simplicity and aesthetic – the Ruby Red finish is very easy on the eye. Future Publishing Limited Quay House, The Ambury, While it’s a JB once again in the bridge, the two Cool Rails bring a lot of power in the middle and neck positions – arguably some of the most deceptive humbuckers ever made thanks to their single-coil size. Now, the Kramer Pacer Classic embodies the original model from 1983 in a new, contemporary shred machine for the hardest rocking, fastest riffing players out there in the 21st century. While premium die cast tuners with an efficient 14:1 gear ratio help to keep the whole package true to pitch. With the 2 volume, 1 tone control knob with miniature three-way toggle, along with a pair of Alnico V Hum bucker pickups, put these together and the guitar will scream so loud you can hear all the way back to 1983.