Hi folks, so just to make my major point very clear : the saddles that come with this guitar are not useable. Others have pointed that out already, but I insist : if you buy this guitar, think in parallel about buying a set of good saddles made from machined metal. You'll find the HB ones for 11 euro here, they seem not bad at least.
The original saddles are made of cheap thin stamped metal sheet and the thread in them holds approx. 1 second (just looking at them is enough, it seems) before it breaks, of course.
This big failure has to cost a lot to Thomann managing all the complaints and returns. But that's their choice, after all.
The neck feels good and is nicely playable. The pickups are basic ceramic and will do for a while. The plastic nut is a weak point however, it plays ok as is today but it won't last very long I fear.
The tuners are low-end copies of vintage Fender tuners, you will upgrade sooner or later.
The major surprise is the sustain, a real pleasure. This thing achieves nearly the sustain of my massive Hagstom super swede, and that is telling.
To conclude for now after a firts glance and a bit playing : all in all a very pleasant surprise for the sound, the neck, the sustain. Prepare for changing the saddles and for a setup, however.
Update 3 weeks later
Folks, first thing I decided to change the nut, replaced with a graph tech because I did'nt want to spend too much time with a bone nut. I can however testify, for having used both, that the latter is the wiser...
Second I discovered the same problem another review had : a huge dead zone (yes, 'zone', not 'note' !) impacting the first 3 strings around the octave. At the time i did not see a proper solution and put the guitar in a corner. Very sad.
Update 1 year later
I decided to do some major intervention on the guitar, since i still wanted a strat-like guitar and had none. As i came to the conclusion that the neck itself was the cause for the dead zone, i decided to take a limited risk and bought a replacement neck from our chinese friends at alibaba for 20 euros. Also, I bought a set of Tonerider pickups (i have very good past experience with them) and a set of Kluson tuners.
To my surprise and delight the new neck really came to my door a few weeks later!
The guitar was now in for a major surgery. The whole operation took a few days of careful work, in particular the new neck need a bit of wood work to adjust; a careful geometry adjustment had to be made, and a good setup as well.
The result surprised me completely. The dead zone, as i hoped, had disappeared! And for the first time, the guitar was indeed playable! The Toneriders are marvelous, as are the new tuners. A completely different instrument that I could really have fun with! And the initial qualities (sustain notably) are still there to my delight!
This guitar should be really viewed as a toy and out of the box, it will not satisfy even beginners. Sad but honest. However, my story demonstrates that there is a way out, and that you may be able to finally get a true instrument if you are willing to pay and to work.