Schecter certainly isn’t new to the extended range game, but it may be the company that has finally perfected it! Today we take a look at a budget 7 String that feels like a much more expensive instrument.
Schecter Demon 7: Heavy On A Budget!
We have already taken a look at the Schecter Demon series before, and to say that we were impressed is an understatement. We were blown away by the sheer quality of the guitar, and how well it was made for the price. We have taken a look at some other budget guitars that are lesser known, but Schecter is a pretty well known brand.
Schecter makes all kinds of guitars, and they have a wide variation of price tiers these days. You have the “Diamond Series” that is made in either Indonesia or Korea, and these are the regular production guitars. Of Course Schecter also has the higher tier American-made Custom Shop guitars as well. No matter what your budget is, there is something for you in the Schecter range.
Schecter Guitar Research has a reputation for being a “Heavy Metal” brand, and in most cases the company embraces this. However, that isn’t where Schecter started. The company was originally a parts company that started making Fender parts and “Fender-Like” guitars. The problem was that Schecter made parts/instruments better than Fender was producing at the time.
Once fender caught wind of what Schecter was up to, the company had to make some changes to designs in the 80’s and 90’s to avoid lawsuits and trademark issues. Like ESP, Charvel, Ibanez, and many other brands, Schecter ended up making original designs to avoid getting sued by Fender and Gibson. So that is where we are at today with Schecter, and I think the company has done quite a good job with original designs destined to one day be iconic.
Schecter makes guitars for every style, but the more “Metal” side of the company has three distinct tiers: Demon, Omen, and Hellraiser. The Demon Series is definitely in budget territory, and most models fall between $350-$500 depending on the features. All of these come in 6, 7, and 8 string variants with all kinds of different finishes and designs.
So let’s take a critical look at the Schecter Demon 7 today, and find out what makes it tick!
Disclaimer: Yes, I am a Schecter player and I am currently in development to become a Schecter Artist. This does not swing my bias whatsoever. In fact, I sold a much more expensive Schecter guitar that I did not like, to buy this one.
Schecter Demon 7: Features And Specs
The Schecter Demon 7 is a fantastic introduction to 7 string guitars, but is also very appealing to the experienced guitarist. The Demon series offers a pretty good balance of quality for the price. The Schecter Demon 7 have the popular C1 body shape, with a carved top. The Demon Series all feature active pickups, and a variety of bridges. The features on the 2020 Demon 7 are:
- Maple Neck
- Basswood Body
- Wenge Fretboard
- Pearloid Gothic Cross Inlays
- Schecter Custom Bridge
- Graph Tech TUSQ XL 7 String Nut
- 26.5” Baritone Scale
- 16” Radius
- Bolt On Construction
- Black Binding
- Schecter Diamond Active Humbuckers
- 9V Battery Compartment
- 24 Jumbo Frets
- Schecter Standard Tuners
- 1 Volume/ 1 Tone/ 3 way Switch
I think there is a lot to talk about with this guitar, and I want to start with the neck. This is one of the most comfortable 7 string necks I have ever played. The description says “Slim C profile” but it is a little thicker than that to me. Now this isn’t a bad thing, as I like a neck that has a little bit of roundness to it. I feel like the ultra slim, skinny necks on extended range guitars can make your hand cramp up and be uncomfortable (Hello Ibanez). The satin, almost unfinished feel of the neck is awesome as well.
The body, and the guitar in general is medium weight for a Basswood instrument. Mine weighs 8.1lbs, and feels more substantial than most budget guitars. The finish is perfect all around, and the black binding makes the white color really pop. It’s pretty rare to see a carved top on a lower priced guitar, but the Schecter Demon 7 has one! The guitar is well balanced with no neck dive.
Ready for your most face-melting riffage and heaviest down-tuned rhythms, the extended-range Schecter Demon-7 is loaded with their Diamond Active pickups, perfectly voiced for aggressive playing. With the famed Schecter C1 body shape, a fast maple neck with smooth wenge fingerboard with gothic cross inlays, the Demon 7 is a great budget shredder!
My Schecter Demon 7 came out of the box setup rather well. I made a couple of adjustments to suit my personal tastes, but it was definitely ready to play. Schecter does this with all of the import guitars. The guitars are shipped to California from Indonesia and Korea, and then quality checked and setup by the Schecter team before you buy them. Every guitar comes with a QC pass document on the back of the guitar.
All of the frets were level, and polished well. There were no sharp fret ends when I checked up and down the neck, which seems to be a rarity these days! The fretboard was a little dry, so I will definitely condition it next time I change strings. The Wenge fretboard is something that is new, as these used to be Rosewood. The wood is really dark, though, and the grain is barely visible. The gothic inlays look awesome, and definitely stand out more than your standard dots.
All of the hardware is pretty standard for an instrument made in Indonesia. None of the hardware is name brand, but it all functions well. I will definitely be adding locking tuners, a locking bridge, and different pots on this guitar. The hardware is obviously where corners were cut on this guitar to keep it “budget”. It’s not that any of it is bad, but there is much better stuff out there. It’s just… basic.
The hardware is the only weak point on the Schecter Demon 7. Usually, stock pickups are a point of contention on a guitar in the sub-$1000 category. The Schecter active humbuckers were, at one point, Duncan Designed humbuckers that were similar to Blackouts. It looks like they have changed this feature for 2019-2020 models and went with “in house” pickups instead.
I was not expecting much out of these pickups at all, but I was very caught off guard when I plugged up and started playing! The bridge pickup has a lot of definition and clarity when it comes to string separation and chord definition . There seems to be a bit of a mid boost that makes the sound cut a little harder than you would expect. Chugging on the low B string has plenty of bass, but these pickups don’t overdo it at all. I expected “dark and boomy” but I am glad that’s not what I got!
The neck pickup is a little darker overall and sounds really great on a clean setting. I went for my usual neck humbucker test, and tried some lead tones through my Blackstar amp. The tone control was really responsive for this purpose and I was surprised that I could get that smooth, creamy lead tone. I opened up the back cavity, and there is actually a capacitor on the tone control, so that explains the sound! Good job, Schecter!
My only other complaint is the neck heel. I understand that making the guitar a bolt on takes the cost of production down. But getting up above the 18th fret, the neck heel is just big and cumbersome. This is a full sized C1 body (Compared to my Omen and Hellraiser it’s the same dimensions), so they shaved as much as they could off of the heel, but it could be better. I think it’s time for a redesign of the Schecter Demon 7!
Schecter Demon 7: Final Verdict…
So at the beginning of the article, I said I sold a much more expensive Schecter because I didn’t like it. The guitar in question, was the Schecter C7 SLS Elite and on paper it looked like the best 7 string that money could buy. But as it turns out, the neck was too thin for me, and I was not a fan of the Fishman Fluence pickups. So it may seem weird that I like the Schecter Demon 7 more than a guitar that costs 4X as much.
But the thing is, the Schecter Demon 7 is a fantastic guitar at just about any price point and I prefer this design over the more expensive one. That being said, I am definitely going to upgrade a few things, and probably put some EMG pickups in it. Locking tuners will make string changing a breeze also. But just because something is more expensive, doesn’t make it better for you as an individual.
I have gone down quite the rabbit hole when it comes to budget guitars recently. What I have come to realize, is that guitars are tools at the base level. If you can get the tools you need for a good deal, without sacrificing quality, then why not go for it? The only thing that matters in the end, is the guitar needs to inspire you.
So if you want to try out 7 strings, then the Schecter Demon 7 is a good place to start. Likewise, if you have experience with 7 string guitars, and you want a solid base for modeling, this is the guitar for you! I’m glad I found a Schecter that inspires me like all of my other guitars do. Get yours today, for an outrageous deal!
Does The Schecter Demon 7 Come With A Case?
No. But the SGR 1C Case fits the guitar perfectly, as well as any other Schecter guitar with the C1 shape.
What Is The Scale On The Schecter Demon 7?
The Schecter Demon 7 has a 26.5 scale length. This puts it into baritone territory. If you want to tune down, this will help with string tension. Should you play in standard tuning, you can use lighter strings on a baritone 7 string!
Is The Schecter Demon Series Any Good?
The Schecter Demon Series is an excellent introduction to the world of Schecter guitars! These are the lower priced models, bt they do not skimp on quality.