Schecter Diamond Series Guide WiredGuitarist June 14, 2016 Articles, Reviews, Schecter Guitar Reviews, Uncategorized Schecter has come a long way. Every year their quality increases and their designs get progressively cooler. This has led to a huge number of models! If I said Schecter Diamond Series, Blackjack ATX, or Hellraiser Hybrid, would you know what any of those mean? The Schecter Diamond Series refers to their non-US Custom shop guitars with nice appointments, and is divided into the groups we’re discussing below (like the Hellraiser Hybrid!). Again, there are so many models to choose from it may be overwhelming for those new to the brand to decide where to start! The Schecter Diamond series is huge, and we’ve put together a super in-depth guide for you to get to know Schecter guitars, and which one might be for you! Banshee Elite The Banshee Elite line is the successor to the Banshee from a couple of years ago. When the Banshee first came out it was an instant hit, featuring high quality hardware, a bolt on neck, and the Seymour Duncan Pegasus/Sentient set. The new Banshee Elite series has an awesome “boutique” vibe, which is strongly in line with Schecter’s recent mantra. With custom Schecter USA Supercharger pickups and a 9 piece maple/walnut thru-neck, these guitars look like they should cost way more than they should. They’re available in a natural gloss or a beautiful Cat’s Eye Pearl dye. A Sustainiac is available for the 6 and 7 string models as well! If you’re interested in what a Sustainiac does, we have both a video and an article explaining them! These guitars came with the Schecter exclusive Floyd Rose 1500 (more stainless steel parts) tremolo or a fixed Hipshot bridge, cool fretboard dot inlays, and glow in the dark side markers! For a more in depth review of the Banshee Elite seven string, click here! Blackjack ATX The Blackjack ATX series guitars all come with Seymour Duncan Blackout active pickups. Two awesome finishes are available on these, a Vampyre Red Satin or Aged Black Satin. The Vampyre Red guitars are made from swamp ash, and the Aged Black are made from mahogany. This is an important distinction, so keep in mind that the different colored guitars in this series are made from wildly different woods. A set “Thin C” neck carved from 3-ply maple with an improved heel for ultra fret access is part of the package too. No inlays on these! The ATX series only come with glow in the dark side dots! The guitars come with either a TonePros, Hipshot, or Floyd Rose tremolo bridge, but it should be noted the Hipshot is only available on the 8 string models. SLS Another variation of the Blackjack series, these guitars are made only from mahogany and are available with a blue burst flame maple top. The SLS series focuses on the faster players, having an “Ultra Thin C” neck. A choice of Seymour Duncan JB/Jazz, Full Shred/Sustainiac, or Blackouts are available for most models! Like the ATX, TonePros, Hipshot, and Floyd Rose bridges are available. Again, the Hipshot is on the 8-string variant! C Series Plus The C-6 Plus models are new for 2016. The C-6 line is the budget line for Schecter. The Plus models have high quality screened finishes painted in an assortment of bursts. These guitars are composed of a basswood body, maple neck, and a “Thin C” neck. Schecter Diamond pickups and in-house string thru TOMs are the only options for the Plus series. Deluxe The Deluxe series ranges from 6 to 8 strings. The specs are exactly the same in these as the Plus series, except these come in solid white or black colors. However, for the C-6 Deluxe, a Satin Metallic Light Blue is available. A double locking trem is available for the six string models, which seems to be the main draw to these. California Vintage Standard The California Vintage Standard models are throwbacks to the classic strat and tele shapes. These are fitted with Schecter Diamond series pickups and the strats come with a vintage tremolo. The nut on these is a high quality Graph Tech Tusq XL nut. Grover tuners are also standard on these. 21 extra jumbo frets and a choice between rosewood or maple fretboards really up the vintage vibe! The body wood for the strat models is alder, and the tele models are made of swamp ash. These have musical and spanky tone, and are perfect for anyone looking for great organic crunch tones. Custom The Custom C.V. models are constructed with swamp ash. Instead of Grover tuners, Schecter replaced them with in-house locking tuners, which hold tuning very well! The strats have an HSS configuration instead of the standard’s SSS, and the teles have an HH configuration instead of the standards SS. Custom Not to be confused with the above mentioned Custom line, or Schecter’s own custom shop, the Custom series is made up of tried and true guitar shapes and Schecter’s iconic Avenger shape. These guitars have Schecter Custom Shop Pasadena humbuckers, an Ernie Ball compensated nut, Schecter locking tuners, an ebony compound radius fretboard with MOP block inlays, and 22 extra jumbo frets. The neck is the familiar “Thin C” found on many Schecter models. All of the guitars in this line are made from mahogany and feature a set mahogany neck as well. Damien Damien Elite Available in 6 to 8 strings, the Damien Elite guitars are equipped with EMG active pickups, Grover Rotomatic tuners, a Graph Tech nut (on non tremolo models), and come in hardtail and locking trem variants. The Damien Elites are built from mahogany and have flame maple tops available in two finishes, Red Crimson burst or Trans Black burst. A bolt on “Thin C” neck and 24 extra jumbo frets are standard on all Damien Elite models Damien Platinum The Damien Platinum Series are simple metal machines. Available only in a Satin black finish with silver and platinum style binding, these guitars have active pickups. A Sustainiac is available on one of the 6 string models. The axes range from 6 to 9 strings, in case 8 isn’t enough to satisfy you! Mahogany bodies with set maple necks all across the board, you have a choice of string thru TOM bridge, a Hipshot-style bridge for the 8 and 9 string models (the 9 string featuring a genuine Hipshot bridge), and a floyd rose option for 6’s and 7’s! The bat inlays on these are unique to the series and are not found in any other Schecter line. The heel is the same improved cutaway heel found on the Blackjack models. Demon A series not often talked about, the Demons are very similar to the Damien Platinum series. Available only in Aged Black Satin finishes with aged creme binding and active Duncan-designed pickups. These come with string thru TOM bridges, Floyd Rose trems, and Hipshot-style bridges. Basswood bodies keep these guitars light, and bolt on “Thin C” maple necks provide punch. The gothic cross inlays also add a bit of attitude to the guitar. Hellraiser The hellraiser is the most well known series in the Schecter brand. These monsters come with EMG active pickups and are also available with a Austainiac. Ranging from 6 to 8 strings, what’s awesome is that you can get an 8 string hellraiser with a Floyd Rose, an option not available on the other series. A mahogany body and set “Thin C” mahogany neck gives you a nice full sounding tone. Hardtail guitars get Schecter locking tuners, while the Floyd Rose-equipped guitars have Grover tuners. You also get really nicely done abalone or pearloid binding and gothic cross inlays! If you’d like to know more about the Schecter Hellraiser, check out our review of it here! Hellraiser Hybrid What separates the Hellraiser Hybrid guitars is the real carbon fiber binding on them! Weight reduction, brother! These are a combination of Hellraiser and SLS models. A mahogany body and set thru “Ultra Thin C” maple neck with the ultra access cutaway makes these super easy to play. For 2016, you can also get these in a really awesome purple to blue chameleon finish! These come with awesome EMG 57/66 sets and are also available with a Sustainiac. Unique offset dot inlays matched with a gothic cross on the 12th fret combine for a perfect balance of clean looks and attitude. Hellraiser Passive Not really much to say about these: they’re no-nonsense and just as awesome as the Hellraiser series! These are identical to the Hellraiser series except with a few more finish options, passive Schecter Brimstone humbuckers, and a Floyd Rose 1500 instead of a Floyd Rose 1000 found in the active Hellraisers. The Hellraiser Passive guitars are only available in 6 and 7 string variants. Omen Like the C series, the Omen series is also a series aimed at players on a budget. These are neat guitars that I had the pleasure of reviewing a few weeks ago! Available in 6 and 7 string models, these are equipped with string-thru TOM bridges. Made of basswood and maple, these are a great bang for the buck! The pickups are Schecter Diamond plus and the neck is a “Thin C” that I’m sure you’ve noticed is a recurring theme throughout this guide. Omen Extreme The Omen Extreme is a slightly fancier variant of the regular Omen models. Crafted from mahogany and maple instead of basswood and maple, you can get these with nice quilt maple tops and even a Floyd Rose! Platinum The Platinum series comes stock with EMG active pickups. Priced a bit below the Hellraiser and Blackjack ATX series, these come with a TonePros TOM bridge, an ultra access neck joint, a Graph Tech nut, and Schecter Locking tuners. Platinums are made from mahogany with a set “Thin C” maple neck. The idea behind these is that all the functional appointments you want are still there, just with some aesthetic specs dialed back to maintain the lower pricepoint. Retro I’m willing to bet most metal players have not heard of Schecter’s Retro line. These guitars are very much inspired by vintage shapes from all across the spectrum. From old LPJ style guitars to hollowbodies, all the guitars in this line are different, there are simply way too many to list for you! I highly recommend you check them out for yourself! Stealth The Stealth series is a simple down to earth line produced with matte finishes. Most models are available in only matte black, but the 6 string hardtail version can be found in matte red, black, satin silver, or white. Made from a mahogany body and set mahogany “Thin C” neck, these guitars deliver a nice warm tone like the Custom series! The bridges are either a Floyd Rose tremolo or a Hipshot-style bridge. The pickups are Schecter Diamond Super Rock IIs. The Stealth is available in 6 or 7 string models. For the sake of not overwhelming you, I have not listed artist signatures in this guide. However, I should mention that the Synyster Gates models are a long-time staple of the brand. Here are some quick notes on some other popular signature models Schecter has released: Wes Hauch has a very cool Tele style 7 string signature as well, which you can read about in our spotlight article. Jeff Loomis also recently unveiled his brand new “Cygnus” model, that can be seen in the Jeff Loomis edition of our Geared series! It’s a completely new shape that took inspiration from other “star” shaped guitars, but has plenty of unique features! I would also, of course, be remiss to not mention the wide array of options in the Keith Merrow line. If you liked this guide, make sure to check out our articles daily for even more content! This article was written by Mike Azernov, our editor located in New York.