Schecter may be a little late to the party this year with the new models, but the California company more than makes up for it with the Schecter Traditional Van Nuys series. These are awesome replicas of what made Schecter famous in the first place!
Schecter Traditional Van Nuys: Simple And Effective, Yet Also A Little Dangerous…
Schecter, like many companies, got delayed over the past year. Whether that was due to Covid, or due to the lack of parts or materials, Schecter is running a little behind. But now it looks like the new models are finally starting to trickle out just in time for Summer NAMM. The Schecter Traditional Van Nuys is the newest addition to the new lineup.
Last week we checked out the SVSS series, and Schecter has definitely upped the ante when it comes to features and specs on those models.
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Schecter has a few different price tiers of models that are offered these days. You have the lower tier Indonesian made models that start at a pretty low price point, most coming in under $500, while some go up to $900. Then, you have the South Korean made models that are manufactured in the WMI Factory. The South Korean models are extremely well made instruments for the money, and other companies use this factory as well, like ESP.
But where Schecter really shines, is the USA Custom shop models. That is precisely what the Schecter Traditional Van Nuys models offer to replicate. These are not your usual Heavy metal focused guitars that we have come to know and love from Schecter. No Abalone, or skull inlays. These are simple, and utilitarian.
Now that’s not to say that the Schecter Traditional Van Nuys Series can’t chug and do Metal! They certainly can. But these Van Nuys models also show off the versatility that you usually only see in the Custom Shop instruments that are easily 4X the price of these new beauties.
Let’s take a look at these new Schecter Traditional Van Nuys guitars, and see what kind of awesome magic they have under the hood!
Schecter Traditional Van Nuys Models: Specs and Features
There are two different models this year in the brand new Van Nuys lineup. You get the C-1 Version, that is “Strat Style” when it comes to the body shape, and you get the famous PT Model version. Both models have some shared features:
- Natural Ash Body Wood
- Roasted Maple Neck
- Locking Tuners
- Vintage Trem Bridge
- Bolt-On Construction
- Chrome Hardware
- Graph Tech Tusq Nut
Both models have a light-weight Ash wood body, and a beautiful roasted maple neck. It seems like 2021 is the year of Roasted maple, as every company seems to have jumped on that bandwagon. I certainly don’t see this as a bad thing, as roasted Maple is a sturdy wood, and a perfect material for the neck’s construction.
Both Schecter Traditional Van Nuys models also sport a Graph Tech nut and locking tuners. This goes hand in hand with the Vintage Style Trem Bridge. Anyone that has ever owned a Fender knows that these kinds of trems rely heavily on the nut for tuning stability.
Both models also use bolt-on neck construction. This is a deal breaker for a lot of people, especially shredders that are used to having a deeper neck carve. Some players say that a bolt-on guitar has a “snappier” response, and I tend to agree. Personally, a larger neck heel has never impeded my playing ability, but I can see where it can be a problem for some people.
Where the models differ, are not just in the body shape. Both models offer different pickup configurations that will definitely be a players choice, but they are more similar than different. Lets check out the original model first, before we get to the PT.
Schecter Traditional Van Nuys C-1 Model
When it comes to the USA Custom Shop, the C-1 Body style is probably the one that you see the most. This model has all of the features listed above, but the pickup configuration is what separates this guitar from it’s PT sister. The HSS pickup combination has been popular for a long time, because of it’s versatility.
The Schecter Traditional Van Nuys C-1 HSS pickup combo has tons of tonal options. The two single coil pickups are Schecter’s own “MonsterTone” Custom Shop pickups. These pickups are pretty high output for your normal single coils, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get some great Fender-esque tones out of them.
The MonsterTone pickups are great for just about any single coil application. These can do sparkling clean sounds all day, or some dirty blues if you want. The neck pickup is nice and warm, while the middle pickup has a little more bite to it. The 5-way switch allows you to blend both pickups as well for that famous “out of phase” tone.
The bridge pickup is is more like the Schecter that we know and love. The “Super Rock Vintage” pickup is ready to chug, or lend itself to soaring lead tones. These are modeled after the famous Anderson Super Rock pickups that were a staple of the Schecter Custom shop in the 80’s and 90’s. This humbucker absolutely screams!
But the Super Rock Vintage is not quite as hot as the original pickup’s design. These are slightly more dialed back, and can get clean sounds easily, if that’s what you want. These “Vintage” models have a hot PAF type of tone, that makes it extremely versatile for a bridge pickup. There is also a push/pull knob that allows you to coil split the bridge pickup!
Schecter Traditional Van Nuys PT Model
The Schecter Traditional Van Nuys PT has a pretty long history. The PT Series started out as a Custom Shop model for Pete Townshend from The Who. Pete played these guitars during the late 70’s and early 80’s on stage and they became a sort of unofficial Signature model. The PT is often looked at as a Telecaster ripoff. But The PT is much more than just that!
These new PT models have a few features that you usually never see on the production model PT Series. Starting with the fact that it has a trem instead of a fixed bridge. As I mentioned earlier, these vintage style trems work in tandem with the Graph Tech nut. You can get some great bends and flutters from these trem systems. But don’t expect to be dive-bombing these guys!
The biggest difference again is the pickup combo in the Schecter Traditional Van Nuys PT. You get two of the Super Rock Custom Shop style pickups. We already know how versatile the bridge pickup is, but the neck also shines as a great lead tone, or clean tone.
The simple control layout is very appealing to me. It has a single volume, and tone knob. You also get an Ibanez style 5 way switch with a vintage Tele Knob. It’s a small feature that is easily overlooked, but I thought it was a really cool touch!
The 5 way switch allows you to not only coil split the Super Rock pickups, but blend them as well. This gives you endless possibilities when it comes to tone. If you are looking for a more traditional Telecaster style tone, you can get it easily. But you could also use these in full humbucker mode to go full-on Metal, or get creamy lead tones from the neck pickup.
The only other difference in the PT model, is the cream binding around the body. This is a beautiful addition, and I really wish that Schecter included it on the other model as well. Binding has always looked very “classy” to me, and it makes the natural finish really pop.
Schecter Traditional Van Nuys: Wrapping Up
So far, it’s safe to say that Schecter is knocking it out of the park this year with the limited new models. Do I wish that these came out months ago, like other guitar companies? Sure, and I was disappointed when Schecter had no announcements for the new lineups. But now that they are starting to trickle in, I can honestly say I am very excited.
The Schecter Traditional Van Nuys Series gives the buyer a small taste of what the more expensive USA Custom Shop instruments are like, at a fraction of the price. The MSRP for both models sits around the $899 mark. To me, that’s a steal when you consider all of the features you get.
Schecter has long been known as the company that gives you all of the upgraded features upfront, and usually they are where it counts: The Trem, Tuners, and nut. This series is certainly no different, as you shouldn’t have to do much to upgrade these instruments!
The new Van Nuys Series is a testament to the versatility of Schecter’s products. If you’re looking for a “swiss army guitar” that does a little bit of everything, this is your guy!
Are The Schecter Traditional Van Nuys Guitars worth it?
These are a great value at under a 1000 dollars if you want to experience what some of the more expensive Schecter Custom Shop Models are like.
Where are the Schecter Traditional Van Nuys Series Made
These guitars are made in the Schecter Indonesia factory.