Washburn’s Idol Series W164 is a great choice if you don’t want a bland look-alike or sound-alike instrument. This distinctively shaped single-cutaway solidbody features an exceptionally thin mahogany body and beveled edges reminiscent of an SG, and it’s loaded with several unusual features that truly makes it stand out from the crowd.
Washburn W164 Features
With its dual high-output WB360 humbuckers, separate volume for each pickup, three-position pickup toggle, stop tailpiece and Tune-O-Matic bridge, the W164 is reminiscent of other models born in America’s Midwest, but this guitar has a personality that’s all its own. The one-piece mahogany set neck offers a 24 ¾-inch scale, 22 frets and a rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays, but the scooped cutaway is deep enough to provide easy access to the highest note.
The W164’s Buzz Feiten tuning system and Voice Contour Control (VCC) electronics really set it apart from the crowd. The Feiten system ensures that the guitar’s intonation remains perfect no matter where you play. VCC replaces standard tone controls with a circuit that lets you incrementally blend humbucking and single-coil tones at the twist of a knob. This feature is exclusive to Washburn guitars, and it’s on a guitar this affordable.
Washburn W164 Performance
The VCC circuit makes the W164 an exceptionally versatile instrument. With it set at full humbucking position, the pickups deliver the dark tones of doom you expect from a thin mahogany-bodied guitar, but as you dial in single-coil tones, the sound becomes much brighter and livelier. Best of all, at the “in-between” setting the pickups sound like P90s, so it’s almost like the guitar has three sets of pickups.
The W164’s neck has the meaty profile of a classic ax, and the frets feel deliciously smooth and buttery. Players accustomed to playing vintage axes will feel right at home. The action is nice and low, and the W164 is a joy to play way up the neck, where the notes retain perfect intonation.
With its vintage feel and versatile electronics, the Washburn W164 is a great choice for players who don’t want to abandon a familiar favorite but need a guitar that can provide all the sounds they need.
Review provided by Musician’s Friend.