Shijie guitars are handled by Enxi. This famous instrument brand has its headquarters in China, producing low-cost products that serve as starter products for many musicians.
Before YouTube influencers started reviewing Shijie guitars, this brand was relatively unknown in the musician community.
Only those who built their own custom rigs at home or sought out low-cost alternatives to Fender and Gibson models used them.
Enxi was founded in December 2011, and is currently the only primary retailer of the Shijie guitar brand.
Consumers can deal with the company directly if they want to try an instrument at home, but it can take between 4-10 weeks to receive the international delivery.
The consensus on Shijie electric guitars is that the instruments sound relatively good, considering their meager price.
Shijie Guitars Review
Shijie guitars are an imported brand from China. Musicians can find entire instruments, or the components used to assemble them, on websites like Alibaba when wanting to explore an off-brand product. Some models are sold at a higher price on various e-commerce platforms because of the middleman involved.
When looking at Shijie guitars, you can find several attractive features and options that appeal to all skill levels.
Here are some of the things to watch for when looking at this brand for your next instrument.
1. The designs offered by this brand are stunning.
Shijie guitars might be manufactured in China, but most instrument brands today could make that statement.
You can spot one because of the unique color styles that come with most models, including a stunning powder blue option that delivers a compelling contrast with the white pickguard.
It makes you want to show off your investment, especially since you don’t need to pay a lot for it.
2. The guitars are relatively easy to handle.
The issue with most modern guitars involves the weight of the instrument. Although manufacturers are creating lighter options to use, some brands are still producing models that weigh over 12 pounds.
That’s enough of a problem to prevent young learners from wanting to start playing.
With Shijie guitars, the build quality is exceptional – especially when looking at the overall price you’ll pay for one of these instruments.
They’re shaped to fit in your hands with precision, staying thick enough to offer heft in the neck while being thin for faster chord movements.
You can do fingerpicking with these guitars with the same high-quality results that come from those who prefer to play power chords.
3. The instrument can be prone to breaking in some environments.
It is nice to have a lightweight guitar because you can take it anywhere to play. The problem with that feature is that the instrument becomes more prone to breaking in adverse conditions.
Even with the reinforcements added to the neck, Shijie guitars tend to have a weak spot at the joint where it meets the body.
You’ll want to be careful when transporting this guitar in anything other than a hard case because an impact could cause damage and separation.
4. The sound quality is slightly above average.
Shijie guitars Do not compare to the top-of-the-line models that you’ll find from brands like Fender and Gibson. If you want the best tone and note shaping possible from your instrument, Enxi doesn’t offer something that will meet your expectations.
When comparing this brand to other starter guitars that you can find online, the sound quality fits into an above-average category.
You’ll want to take the time to get to know the instrument’s features to ensure that you can start finding some signature sounds.
5. The guitars are offered at a significant discount.
In 2021, Shijie guitars sell on Alibaba for $220 when purchasing 17 or less at the same time. The expected turnaround time for your order is 60 days add that amount.
If you purchase between 18 to 59 guitars simultaneously, the price drops to $160 per instrument. The estimated time of delivery also gets cut in half.
The cheapest that Shijie guitars are available is $130 per item. That availability occurs when buying more than 120 instruments.
One of the unique aspects of this guitar is that if you order six of them at once, you can add graphic customization and your logo to the instrument.
Trade assurance, dispatch guarantees, and a complete refund policy all apply at the time of this writing.
6. The guitar materials are made from traditional woods.
When you purchase a Shijie guitar direct from the factory, you’re getting an instrument that is made with some of today’s best tonewoods.
Most of the fingerboards use rosewood, while the body and neck are made from mahogany. Several different models are available, with some providing multiple volume and tone controls to consider.
Although you won’t get the status of playing a name-brand instrument with Shijie guitars, you have the opportunity to chart your own path toward your music.
7. The transport time is significant.
Although you can purchase these guitars directly from the Chinese factory where they are made, the shipping time from Quanzhou and Shenzhencan be significant for some consumers.
These are the following rates based on where the delivery is required, and it should be noted that there is no guarantee on the logistical solution used by Enxi to send the instruments to your front door.
- Shipments to Australia and New Zealand take the least amount of time, with completion expected between 34 to 80 days after processing the order.
- Asian customers can expect delivery of their new guitars between 34 to 85 days after making payment.
- North American deliveries have an expected turnaround time of 34 to 90 days. That’s the same figure quoted for customers currently living in the Middle East.
- It takes between 37 to 115 days for orders to reach addresses in central and South America.
- Customers in Africa might need to wait 120 days or more to receive their new Shijie guitar.
Those shipping times are the reason why some customers turn to online stores and music shops if they want to try a guitar from this brand. The only problem is that the markup can be significant.
For a 2020 Shijie guitar, the cost can be as high as $2,300 to have the instrument ordered and shipped within a week. That’s up to ten times higher than if you ordered it from the factory yourself.
If you’re interested in a Shijie guitar, your best option is to register an account on Alibaba to place an order. Import restrictions might apply, which means you’ll want to review the current rules and regulations before sending Enxi your hard-earned cash.
What Do Shijie Guitars Sound Like When Played?
It would be fair to compare Eastman guitars to the Shijie brand. The instrument is made to look like a Strat, although it’s a bit lighter than what Fender creates.
As for the sound, the Shijie guitar is a bit closer to a Gibson than a Fender. It’s got some grit to it, along with some flexibility for the overall grind. The neck is a bit thicker than expected, making it more of a U-shaped profile than the advertised C-shape Shijie creates.
The pickups are made in Japan for the instrument – most seem to be Gotoh. That gives you the option to create softer and warmer tones by shifting the audio components the guitar produces.
You also get the five-way switch that’s not part of the standard Strat setup.
It is a bit confusing since the standard tone wiring is mixed up compared to where the pickups are on the guitar.
You’ll get a nice, smooth finish with a bit of vibrato. It doesn’t play well when bending, especially since the reverb can drown out the instrument.
The neck pickup does well for funk and blues. You’ll get a nice roll without feedback, but the power chords don’t come with the strength you’d expect.
If anything, the Shijie guitar feels more like an acoustic instrument in some ways.
Strats can add some jangle that you don’t get with this off-brand choice, especially with the warm sounds that serve well as a background accompaniment.
The best sounds come when you’ve got the bridge in the middle. An anthemic sound produced by the guitar feels reminiscent of the top hits from the past two decades of music.
You’ll need to take some of the high end off at the amp because you don’t get the settings option on the instrument.
If you have an overdrive pedal, you’ll hear the true potential of this guitar. It has a nice echo, lots of distortion harmonics, and tons of beef in the low end, making you want to tap your foot while playing.
Is It Worth the Wait Time to Get a Shijie Guitar?
The issue with a Shijie guitar is that it needs some high-end equipment to produce its best sounds. That means your head, amp, speakers, and pedals must have enough quality to support the audio tone and quality from the instrument. That puts the cost toward what you’d pay for a Strat that sounds the same on low-quality items.
I’ve found that the best low-cost pedal to grab for a Shijie guitar is the BOSS Super Overdrive SD-1.
Although you’ll get a constant hum and some volume issues with the guitar, it still delivers the custom twang of a Strat on most amps and speakers.
That means you can get your amp, pedal, and guitar for under $400 when shopping carefully.
As for the amp, I like using the Fender Frontman 10G for the Shijie guitar.
You get that extra overdrive select switch with this option, including treble and bass modifications that let you take the top end edge off the sound.
I’ve had a great experience with my Shijie guitar. Although you can find some minor flaws in some of the instruments, it doesn’t take much to correct the issue.
I needed to add solder to one of my connections to create audio consistency, but that was the only real issue I faced. The strings also needed immediate replacement, which is expected.
The D’Addario EXL110-3D nickel wound strings provide the brightness and intonation I want from the instrument.
If you have the time to wait for a Shijie guitar, it’s worth taking a flyer on this brand. While you’re waiting for the instrument to arrive, consider grabbing the accessories needed to create some beautiful music!