“An ultra-fast guitar that you’re going to want to burn many fretboard miles on”: Jackson American Series Virtuoso review

The new go-faster bolt-on Superstrat from the Jackson USA line is a speed machine with a build that justifies the price tag

Jackson American Series Virtuoso body
(Image: © Jackson)

Guitar World Verdict

The Jackson American Series Virtuoso is a tier-one instrument where attention to detail is not only felt but heard, and a clear reminder why an American-made guitar is still something to behold.


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    Seymour Duncan pickups offer wide range of classic and heavy tones.

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    Flawless construction and setup.

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    Comfortable for speedy playing styles.

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    Floyd Rose 1500 ensures tuning precision.


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    Progressive and metal players may favor active pickup choices instead.

You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

So, where do I start? Jackson released yet another guitar that looks an awful lot like the numerous others in their ranks of fast-playing and sleekly designed instruments. I don’t want to be cynical here because you – like me – are dying to know what’s so mind-blowingly different about the new Jackson American Series Virtuoso, so hang on. 

A year ago, Jackson launched the American Series Soloist SL3 to rave reviews. Now, with the release of the American Series Virtuoso, Jackson elevated the fanfare with an ultra-slick promotional video that featured major djent and metal artists like Periphery’s Misha Mansoor and Revocation’s Dave Davidson, along with virtuosic metal titan Marty Friedman as the centerpiece, followed by metal’s new wave of up-and-comers such as Heriot’s Debbie Gough and Clint Tustin of Erra – all playing the guitar while showcasing their diverse range of shred-tastic styles behind a chugging backdrop of original music. 

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Paul Riario

Paul Riario has been the tech/gear editor and online video presence for Guitar World for over 25 years. Paul is one of the few gear editors who has actually played and owned nearly all the original gear that most guitarists wax poetically about, and has survived this long by knowing every useless musical tidbit of classic rock, new wave, hair metal, grunge, and alternative genres. When Paul is not riding his road bike at any given moment, he remains a working musician, playing in two bands called SuperTrans Am and Radio Nashville.