Charvel electric guitars symbolize hard rock and heavy metal of the 80's, and are famous for having created the guitar shape called Dinky. At the time, there were also Japanese-made guitars being made in parallel with the USA-made guitars, but when the Republican Company withdrew, and Chushin Instruments took over, only low-priced models were left circulating in Japan and eventually they were discontinued in the 1990s. In recent years, there has been a growing demand for the revival of Japanese-made Charvel guitars, and Kanda Shokai has finally responded to this demand!
The long-awaited Japanese-made series is the "MJ Series", and it comes with high-grade hardware and the quality is reliable, and includes a lineup of 6 types (all-in-all 8 models) with different features!
As soon as we received two of the models, the MJ Dinky and the MJ San Dimas Style 1, I checked them out!
★ MJ Dinky DK24 HSH 2PT E MAH Natural
DK24 is a popular CHARVEL model. The Indonesian-made PRO-MOD series sells well in pink and has a colorful image. However, the Japanese-made DK24 produced this time is finished in a mature look with a combination of wenge, mahogany and ebony! Despite the small body unique to the Dinky, it has an overwhelming presence with a one-piece wenge neck, walnut top & mahogany back, and gold parts! When I actually picked it up, it felt compact, but it is stunning. Probably a feature unique to wenge. When distortion is added, it has a sharp edge with a pleasant sound.
And the contour on the back is awesome! You can easily chock even on the 24th fret.
The one-piece graphite reinforced wenge neck is a plate-less bolt-on type. It has a smooth grip for playing comfort. The compound radius that realizes stress-free playability in any position is attractive!
The pickups are by Dimarzio, Seymour Duncan custom Full Shred SH-10b (bridge), Custom Flat Strat SSL-6 (middle), Alnico II Pro APH-1n (neck). A wide range of sound creation is possible with the HSH layout. The GOTOH CUSTOM tremolo bridge with 2-point support allows smooth arming.
Combine Gotoh's locking tuners with Graphtec's TUSQ XL nut to minimize mess!
They also combine Goto locking tuners with Graphtec TUSQ XL nuts to minimize mess! The volume control uses a low friction pot made by Bones, and the tone control uses a no-load tone pot that is completely bypassed when the tone is set to full.
It is also interesting that the combination of pickups with 5WAY switches differs from series to series.
★MJ San Dimas Style 1 HSH FR PF QM (Transparent Green Burst)
Next, the San Dimas Style 1 HSH, where the quilted body top draws attention! Alder is used for the back. The neck uses a one-piece maple neck reinforced with graphite and is joined to the body with a plate-less four-point bolt-on system. This also uses a compound radius.
In addition to the transparent green burst , the lineup also includes two colors that match this midnight glow.
Although not as good as MJ Dinky, the corners of the heel are cut smoothly, and the back of the body on the 1st string side cutaway is cut nicely! Here also access to the high frets is smooth.
The hardware is unified in chrome, and the bridge is recessed and mounted with a high precision Goto GE1996T series double locking tremolo. Moreover, the lock nut uses the Floyd Rose 1000 series.
Pickups are directly mounted with Seymour Duncan JB TB-4 (bridge), Custom Flat Strat SSL-6 (middle), Jazz SH-2n (neck), and the 5-way pickup selector switch is a DK24. (See the figure below)
The MIJ series comes with a hard shell multi-fit gig bag that can be transported in a backpack style!
How was the MJ series carefully made in Japan using Japanese parts and pickups loved by the Japanese? ? Since it started out as a component guitar in 1970, Charvel has been an ever-evolving brand to keep an eye on!