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  1. #1

    Default Pro Mods: USA vs Japan

    Has anyone had a chance to play them side by side? any obvious differences in terms of fit and finish, tone, playability?

  2. #2
    JCF Member Grandturk's Avatar
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    Yes I have. They are pretty much the same. The only differences I noticed was the way the fingerboards were rolled on the MIJ guitars, which looked a little bit odd - kinda more scallopped than rolled - but they felt fine. The two I compared had equally nicely dressed frets, but I noticed some earlier MIA ProMods were a little less nice - i.e. not as highly polished.
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  3. #3

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    For me, I much prefer the "raw" feel of the necks on my USA Pro Mods over the "hard plastic-like" feel of the MIJ ones.

    Both are great guitars, though, and the $899 (US) for the MIJ that includes a nice hardshell case is a good deal. If the price were the same, I'd pick USA everytime, but for price points, both are great.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grandturk View Post
    Yes I have The only differences I noticed was the way the fingerboards were rolled on the MIJ guitars, which looked a little bit odd - kinda more scallopped than rolled - but they felt fine. .
    I noticed this myself from photo's?

  5. #5

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    Both of the series of Pro Mods NEED the back of the neck and the fretboards to be rubbed down with #0000 steel wool. They both have felt like the oil that is used to finish the neck is just applied to them and left to sit there and dry without the excess being taken off with steel wool. I have found that the Japanese ones almost feel like these is a finish on them. So I took my thumbnail and scraped on the back of the neck and there is hardened oil residue "finishing" the neck. I got out the steel wool and went at it and the neck feels absolutely killer though much of the yellowish tint came off. And using #0000 steel wool on oil finished Charvel necks is nothing new. I've been doing it since 1984. That's what you use to clean and make the necks feel smoother and faster. The custom shop guitars "want" this done to them too, every time you change strings. They just don't need it right out of the box because that extra $1000+ gets you a guy in the factory steel wooling your neck before shipping it.

    My new ferrari red, MIJ San Dimas is a fantastic guitar. there is zero difference in quality, tone or playability with my USA Production Charvels and to be honest, I like the neck shape better than my 1980 pre-pro and my 1984 pointy. The '80 is too big around, like a '59 strat neck which is out of the ordinary. My 1984 pointy is too thin IMO, not quite Ibanez, but too thin. The Pro Mod necks remind me of an '83 pointy I had that was the best playing guitar I ever had but I could never get along with it tonally. The Pro Mod neck is like that! Oh yeah!

  6. #6

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    Does anyone else think that both the USA and MIJ have a smaller body than a fender strat? It just feels smaller to me and I don't know if I'm crazy or if it is true!

  7. #7
    JCF Member dg's Avatar
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    It's not smaller, but the body shape is a little different from a Fender strat, and the radius of the edges is a little smaller (sharper) on a Charvel body.

  8. #8
    JCF Member dg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grandturk View Post
    Yes I have. They are pretty much the same. The only differences I noticed was the way the fingerboards were rolled on the MIJ guitars, which looked a little bit odd - kinda more scallopped than rolled - but they felt fine. The two I compared had equally nicely dressed frets, but I noticed some earlier MIA ProMods were a little less nice - i.e. not as highly polished.
    Quote Originally Posted by CHARVEL_strat_81 View Post
    I noticed this myself from photo's?

    That is closer to what the rolled edges on a custom look like than a USA pro mod. On the customs, the edges are rolled by hand between the frets, so you get that scalloped look as more wood is left up against the frets. The USA pro mods have a more uniform look, and I remember we were wondering how the heck they did that when they first came out. Some said they thought the fret ends & the roll were all done in one process somehow, but it's all guesswork. They've been extremely tight-lipped about everything with these guitars

  9. #9

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    Grandturk pretty much summed it up. Both are great guitars for the money, I am happy with both. MIJ's have a scalloped feel on the necks which is pretty cool actually.

  10. #10
    Platinum Member The Rossness's Avatar
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    The volume knob and pup selector switch feel different to me when comparing a USA to a MIJ.


  11. #11

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    There are small differences in the way we roll the edges on the MIJ models. The changes we made were going to be rolled in to the product at some point... the improvements just happened to line up with the timing of the Pro-Mods release. We'll be tweaking the Pro-Mods as the year unfolds... Red is being replaced with another red...and a weird looking Blue. ALSO, as I said at NAMM... we'll be coming out with some other COOL stuff. (nothing goes away). It's going to be a killer summer!
    ;
    Last edited by Bionic; 03-22-2011 at 04:40 PM.

  12. #12

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    i have the mia kandy tangerine san dimas rosewood fretboard a snow white mij san dimas and the molten crust mij wildcard the volume knob and pickup selector definitely feel different on the mij also the neck angle is differnt on the non recessed mij as the floyd sits way closer to flush on the mij compared to the mia with the same action also the maple fretboard neck feels thicker than the rosewood fretboard necks kinda weird ...... would love to see a reverse headstock wildcard

  13. #13

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    man you would know, wouldn't you LOL Now we're gonna have people talk about how great their pick-up selectors are on their US made charvels over their japanese lol

  14. #14
    Zzyzx RacerX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimmyg View Post
    i have the mia kandy tangerine san dimas rosewood fretboard a snow white mij san dimas and the molten crust mij wildcard the volume knob and pickup selector definitely feel different on the mij also the neck angle is differnt on the non recessed mij as the floyd sits way closer to flush on the mij compared to the mia with the same action also the maple fretboard neck feels thicker than the rosewood fretboard necks kinda weird would love to see a reverse headstock wildcard
    Thank you, Robot from the 1950s!
    Last edited by RacerX; 03-22-2011 at 07:20 PM.
    "Quiet, numbskulls, I'm broadcasting!" -Moe Howard, "Micro-Phonies" (1945)

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by RacerX View Post
    Thank you, Robot from the 1950s!
    Almost a run-on sentence, but he slipped that "......" in there at the last minute and saved the day!
    The battle's done
    And we kind of won
    So we sound our victory cheer
    Where do we go from here?

  16. #16
    Zzyzx RacerX's Avatar
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    OK I took 'em out
    "Quiet, numbskulls, I'm broadcasting!" -Moe Howard, "Micro-Phonies" (1945)

  17. #17
    JCF Member chrisolson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarkThomas View Post
    For me, I much prefer the "raw" feel of the necks on my USA Pro Mods over the "hard plastic-like" feel of the MIJ
    Have you played a new MIJ yet? The USA and MIJ are virtually indistinguishable. Having owned 5 USAs and 2 MIJs, I'm pretty confident in my opinion on this one. In all honesty, I think the MIJ neck might even edge out the USA model with the rolled edges, etc.

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