Posts tagged ‘Johan Lundgren’


Review: Hagström Fantomen

You could call Hagström’s Fantomen (Swedish for The Phantom) a signature guitar of sorts, as it has been designed in collaboration with Swedish Metal band Ghost.

In terms of its outline the Fantomen is not a million miles removed from Gibson’s forgotten Seventies classic the RD, which was sunk by the ill-advised addition of active electronics. The Hagström Fantomen, in contrast, has been designed as a straightforward and practical, yet versatile, electric guitar for the Rock and Metal guitarist. Let’s take a look…


The Hagström Fantomen (current price in Finland ca. 850 €) marries a set mahogany neck to a relatively thin mahogany body (3.5 cm/1.38″).

The Fantomen is available in black and white finishes, too, but I must say that the sunburst finish on our test sample is a stunner, really showing off the two-piece body’s wood grain.

The front of the body sports multi-ply binding, while a comfortable ribcage chamfer has been added to the back.

Hagström’s stylish headstock is a bona fide design classic, as are the stepped tuner buttons.

Two special features are included in all Hagström models:

The Hagström H-Expander truss rod is an ingenious piece of engineering. The adjustable rod sits inside a metal rail with an H-shaped cross-section. The entire assembly is then inserted into a slot of the same shape that has been cut into the neck wood. The H-Expander requires less wood to be removed than any of the other traditional truss rod designs, which is a good thing for the structural integrity of the neck, which in turn benefits the guitar’s tone and sustain.

Hagström has also long been favouring its proprietary Resinator-material for all of the company’s fingerboards. Long before the recent ban of genuine rosewoods was even on the horizon, Hagström found a way to bond sustainable wood slivers and resin into man-made ebony, calling the material Resinator.

The Fantomen has a Fender-style scale of 64.8 cm (25.5″) and offers 22 medium-jumbo frets on its 15-inch radius fretboard.

The chrome hardware further comprises a tune-o-matic-type bridge and a stopbar tailpiece, as well as a set of Hagström’s H-embossed knurled control knobs.

For their Fantomen model Hagström turned to Swedish pickup guru Johan Lundgren, who designed a set of Far Eastern Lundgren Designed humbuckers for the model.

The neck humbucker is loaded with an Alnico II magnet, while the bridge unit uses a stronger Alnico V version.

The Gibson-type control setup of two volumes and two tones is further augmented by push/pull-switches in the tone controls that split the humbuckers.


For such a comparatively large-bodied guitar the Hagström Fantomen is rather comfortable to ”wear” and play. Our test sample’s weight is on the moderate side of medium.

The neck profile is a slim D and the excellent, buzz-free setup makes the test sample a real player. The fretwork is very competent, even though our test guitar’s frets would have benefitted from a few minutes more attention during polishing. Straight out of the box there’s a tiny amount of coarseness you can feel during bends, which will disappear by itself, though, simply by playing the Fantomen regularly.

The decision to use humbuckers with a moderate output level in the Fantomen really pays off. The tones this Hagström delivers are nuanced, dynamic and three-dimensional. The Fantomen is a guitar that faithfully translates a player’s touch into music, meaning it can be gentle just as well as aggressive. The coil splits go a long way in providing fairly authentic single-coil sounds for those Fendery moments.

Here is a clip showing you the six main pickup selections played through a Bluetone Shadows Jr. boutique combo. The full humbucker settings come first:

The demo song was recorded using a Juketone True Blood amp (Tweed Champ clone) and a Bluetone Shadows Jr. combo. No pedals were used:


Even though the Fantomen was designed in collaboration with a Metal band, Hagström haven’t fallen into the trap of creating a one-dimensional, balls-to-the-wall screamer. The looks may say ”Rock”, but Hagström’s Fantomen also offers fine clean tones, turning this model into a great all-rounder.


Hagström Fantomen

Current price in Finland approx. 850 €

Finnish distributor: EM Nordic


+ workmanship

+ sound

+ versatility

+ value for money


– gigbag not includedSave












Review: Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone + Northen Swede

This time takes a closer look at two Hagström models: The Viking Deluxe Baritone is a Far-Eastern-made baritone-guitar, made to please the friends of low riffage, while the brand-new Northen Swede is part of the company’s new high-end line, which is handmade in the Czech Republic.


The Hagström Viking Baritone (current street price in Finland approx. 600 €) is the newest addition to the Viking-line. This long-necked beauty features the same stylish curves and semi-acoustic body as the rest of the Vikings.

The Canadian hard rock maple neck is glued into the body, which is made from flame maple plywood.

Hagström’s headstock simply oozes 1950’s glitzy panache, with its ultraclean binding and inlay work.

The top nut, on the other hand, is up to date, using self-lubricating, man-made Black Tusq.

Modern sealed Hagström-tuners keep things steady.

One of Hagström’s special features is their Resinator-fingerboard. Resinator is a man-made alternative to ebony – in both looks and sound – and is made using wood fibres and resin.

The fretwork is rather good on our test sample, apart from a few fret ends, which felt a tiny bit sharpish in places.

Inside the plywood soundbox you can see the Viking Baritone’s full-length mahogany centre block.

The centre block is what turns a fully acoustic guitar into a semi. It improves attack and sustain, as well as greatly reducing the danger of howling feedback at higher volume levels.

Hagström have optimised this Viking’s choice of pickups for use in a baritone-guitar:
The neck pickup is Hagström’s new P-Urified unit, which is a P-90-type singlecoil in humbucker-size. Employing a singlecoil in the neck position makes great sense, as it improves tonal clarity, while steering clear of any potential mushiness.

The bridge unit is Hagström’s great Custom 58 -humbucker, whose moderate output and nice dynamic range fit the P-Urified perfectly.

The three-way toggle sits on the Viking Baritone’s top horn.

It’s nice to see quality long-throw pots and clean workmanship inside the Viking.

The classic Gibson-type bridge and stopbar combination works fine on a semi like this.


Thanks to its nice, moderate weight the Hagström Viking Baritone sits comfortably in your lap, with good strapped-on balance, too, regardless of a whiff of neck-heaviness due to its long neck.

The neck profile is a fleshy, but not too fat ”D”. Due to a baritone-guitar’s longer scale length (28″/71,1 cm) a newbie will need a little time to adjust his (or her) technique, but after a few minutes or so muscle memory will take the reigns without any problems.

The Viking Baritone’s choice of pickups really does it for me, fitting this guitar’s acoustic tone to a tee. The freshness of the neck pickup, together with its deliciously woody response, will keep even the lowest runs clear and punchy. And the moderately-powered bridge humbucker adds just the right amount of bite and grit to proceedings.

I feel that Hagström’s Viking Baritone is a fine baritone for all occasions and all styles of music (well, probably apart from the most massive of high-gain applications).

Listen to these two audio clips (the pickup order is: neck – both – bridge):

Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone – clean

Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone – crunchy


The Hagström Northen Swede (current street price in Finland approx. 1.200 €) is a high-quality, EU-made reissue of the classic Swedish model of yore.

We’re talking about a set-neck solidbody, made almost completely from African mahogany (note: the cover plates look strange in this pic, because they still have their protective foils stuck on top).

The large pearloid inlay proudly displays the Northen-series’ logo.

The Hagström-tuners have an 18:1 gear ratio and a smooth and precise feel.

The Northen Swede’s Resinator-board looks more lively than its counterpart on the Viking Baritone. The fretwork is very good.

One special, time-tested feature of all Hagström necks is the H-Expander truss rod system. The H-Expander truss rod sits in a rigid aluminium bar with an H-shaped cross-section. The whole system is then mounted into a tight-fitting, profiled slot inside the the neck, resulting in greater rigidity and thus a better vibrational transfer than most other truss rod systems provide.

The Swede features Hagström’s idiosyncratic tailpiece, using individual string retainers mounted onto a perspex plate.

Swedish pickup-guru Johan Lundgren is the force behind the Northen Swede’s classy pickups. The guitar is equipped with a pair of No. 2 -humbuckers, which are powered by Alnico 2 magnets.

The Hagström Swede sports two three-way toggle switches: The switch on the guitar’s shoulder is your usual pickup selector, while the one on the treble-side horn is a tone filter -switch.

The tone filter’s middle position is off, with the ”up” selection giving you a mild presence roll-off, while the ”down” position results in a noticeably greater treble and high-mid cut.

The control knobs work in the standard Les Paul -fashion, with each pickup being provided with its own set of volume and tone controls.

Quality components, clean soldering and thorough screening, using conductive paint and an aluminium-lined lid, get the thumbs up from this here reviewer.

A sturdy and beautiful Hagström-case is included in the Northen Swede’s price.


The Hagström Northen Swede’s well-rounded neck profile feels great to me. The nicely polished frets and the ’board’s 12-inch camber make for a fast and effortless playing experience.

Thanks to the fantastic interplay between the tone filter -switch and the guitar’s controls, the tonal options afforded by this Swede are virtually limitless. The Lundgren-designed pickups have a very clear and clean basic tonal character, which enables you to make the most of the Northen Swede’s passive electronics.

In my opinion Hagström’s Northen Swede is a top-quality guitar offering a great deal of tonal variation to the discerning guitar connoisseur. In light of its Czech origin, I must say that the Northen Swede truly represents quality European workmanship at a very moderate price.

All the following audio clips have been recorded with the tone filter -switch starting at off, then going to moderate roll-off, with the last phrase using the full treble cut selection:

Hagström Northen Swede – neck pickup/clean

Hagström Northen Swede – both/clean

Hagström Northen Swede – bridge pickup/clean

Hagström Northen Swede – neck pickup/crunchy

Hagström Northen Swede – both/crunchy

Hagström Northen Swede – bridge pickup/crunchy


…and here we have both Hagströms in action:

Hagström Viking Baritone + Northen Swede – the video’s audio



Finnish distributor: EM Nordic

A big thank you to DLX Music Helsinki for the loan of the review instruments!


Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone

Current street price in Finland about 600 €


+ sound


+ workmanship

+ weight

+ pickups


– fingerboard binding felt a tad angular on test sample


Hagström Northen Swede

current street price in Finland about 1.200 €


+ made in the EU

+ sound

+ versatility

+ Lundgren-pickups

+ workmanship

+ playability

+ weight



Testipenkissä: Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone + Northen Swede

Tässä jutussa tutustutaan kahteen Hagström-malliin: puoliakustinen Viking Deluxe Baritone on Kauko-Idästä peräisin oleva baritonikitara matalien riffien ystäville, kun taas upouusi Northen Swede valmistetaan käsityönä Tšekinmaassa.


Hagström Viking Baritone (katuhinta noin 600 €) on Viking-perheen uusi, pitkäkaulainen tulokas, jolla on samat tyylikkäät muodot ja sama puoliakustinen perusrakenne kuin muissakin Viking-malleissa.

Luja vaahterakaula on liimattu kauniiseen, muotoon prässätystä vaahteravanerista valmistetuun runkoon.

Hagströmin lapa huokuu 1950-luvun jazzkitaroiden äärimmäistä tyylikkyyttä, monikerroksisella reunalistoituksellaan ja siistillä upotustyöllään.

Satula taas on laadukkaasta, kitkaa vähentävästä Black Tusq -materiaalista.

Myös Hagström-virittimet ovat nykyaikaista suljettua sorttia.

Hagström-kitaroiden erikoisuuksiin kuuluu Resinator-otelauta. Resinator on keinotekoinen materiaali puusta ja hartsista, jonka sanotaan olevan soundillisesti hyvin lähellä eebenpuuta.

Nauhatyö on toteutettu testisoittimessa hyvin siististi, ainoastaan nauhojen päät olisivat voineet olla vielä hivenen verran pyöreämmät.

Vanerikopan sisällä on paksu keskipalkki mahongista, joka kulkee kaulaliitoksesta koko matkan rungon läpi.

Keskipalkki tekee kitarasta puoliakustisen (muuten se olisi täysiakustinen). Se parantaa kitaran atakkia ja sustainea (= soinnin kestoa), ja se vähentää myös ratkaisevasti ontosta kopasta syntyvän feedback-ulinan vaaran.

Mikrofonivarustus on Viking Baritonessa optimoitu juuri baritonikäyttöä varten:
Kaulamikrofonina toimi Hagströmin uusi P-Urified-malli, joka on peeysikymppinen humbuckerkoossa. Yksikelaisen käyttö kaulan lähellä pitää matalat taajuudet siistimpänä ja parantaa soundin selkeyttä.

Tallamikrofoni taas on Hagstömin selkeä-ääninen Custom 58 -malli, joka sopii maltillisen tehonsa ansiosta erittäin hyvin P-Urified-kaltaisen kaulamikin kanssa yhteen.

Kolmiasentoinen mikkivalitsin sijaitsee Viking Baritonen yläsarvella.

Vikingin kytkennössä käytetään laadukkaita isokokoisia potentiometrejä. Työnjälki on elektroniikankin osalta hyvin siisti.

Klassinen Gibson-tyylinen tallan ja kietenpitimen yhdistelmä on toimiva ratkaisu.


Hyvin malttillisen painoinen Hagström Viking Baritone istuu erittäin hyvin soittajan sylissä, ja roikkuu hihnassakin melko rauhallisena erittäin lievästä kaulanpainoisuudestaan huolimatta.

Kaulaprofiili on tuhti, mutta ei missään nimessä ylipaksu ”D”. Baritonikitaran pidempi mensuuri (28″/71,1 cm) vaatii lyhyen tutustumisvaiheen, mutta lihasmuistin sisäänajon jälkeen soitto sujuu ongelmitta.

Viking Baritonen mikrofonit ovat mielestäni erinomaiset, ja ne sopivat tälle kitaralle loistavasti. Kaulamikrofonin tuoreus ja maiskuvan pähkinäinen keskialue pitää myös erittäin matalat juoksut siisteinä ja erottelevina. Maltillinen tallahumbuckeri taas pysyy hyvin dynaamisena ja avoimena.

Hagström Viking Baritone on todella maukas yleisbaritoni, joka sopii erittäin hyvin kaikille musiikkityyleille – ehkä rankimpaa Thrashia lukuunottamatta.

Tässä kaksi audiopätkää (järjestys: kaulamikki – molemmat – tallamikki):

Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone – puhdas

Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone – säröllä


Hagström Northen Swede (katuhinta noin 1.200 €) on eurooppalaisvalmisteinen laatuversio vanhasta ruotsalaisesta klassikkokitarasta.

Kyseessä on liimakaulainen lankkukitara, joka on veistetty otelautaa lukuunottamatta täysin afrikkalaisesta mahongista (huom: kuvassa muovikansien suojamuovit vielä paikoillaan).

Lapaan on upotettu sarjan nimeä kantava, helmiäismuovista tehty laatta.

Hagström-virittimien välityssuhde on 18:1, ja niiden tuntuma on hyvin sulava.

Northen Sweden Resinator-otelauta näyttää eloisemmalta kuin Viking Baritonen vastine. Nauhatyö on erittäin huolellinen.

Hagström-kaulojen erikoisuus piilee firman erittäin lujassa H-Expander-kaularaudassa. H-profiiliseen alumiinikuoreen asennettu kaularauta istuu erittäin tiukasti kaulapuussa, minkä ansiosta kaula värisee voimakkaamin.

Tune-o-matic-tyylisen tallan aisapari on Hagströmin oma kieltenpidin, jossa kielet ankkuroidaan erillisiin metalliblokkeihin.

Ruotsalainen mikkiguru Johan Lundgren on mies Northen Swede -mallin loistavien mikrofonien takana. Kyseessä ovat No. 2 -nimisiä kuorellisia humbuckereita, jotka rakennetaan miedoilla Alnico 2 -magneetteilla.

Hagström Swedessä on kaksi kolmiasentoista vipukytkintä: kitaran olkapäässä istuva kytkin on tavallinen mikkivalitsin, kun taas sarven kytkin on tone-filtteri.

Filtterikytkimen väliasento on neutraali, ylös-asennossa astuu kuvaan mieto preesens- ja diskanttisuodin, kun taas ala-asentolla valitaan rajumpi treble-filtteriä.

Säätimet toimivat perinteisellä, Les Paul -tyylisellä tavalla – kummallekin mikrofonille on omat volume- ja tone-säätönsä.

Laadukkaita komponentteja, siistiä juotostyötä ja toimiva häiriösuojaus grafiittimaalilla ja alumiinilla vuoratulla kannella ilahduttavat testaajan.

Laadukas Hagström laukku kuuluu Northen Sweden hintaan.


Hagström Northen Swede -kitaran täyteläinen kaulaprofiili istuu todella mukavasti ainakin minun käteeni. Sulavaksi työstetyt nauhat ja otelaudan loiva kaarevuus (12″) tekevät soittotuntuman erittäin helpoksi.

Tone Filter -kytkimen ja säädinosaston saumattomasta yhteistyöstä syntyy lähes rajaton soundien leikkikenttä. Lundgren-mikkien hyvin tuoreen perusäänen ansiosta pystyy hyödyntämään täysin kaikki kytkennän tuomia mahdollisuuksia.

Northen Swede on mielestäni loistava ja erittäin monipuolinen kitara laatutietoiselle, joka sopii genrelle kuin genrelle. Soittimen tšekkiläisen alkuperänsä vuoksi pidän pyydettyä hintaa hyvin kohtuullisena – Northen Swede edustaa eurooppalaista laatua reiluun hintaan.

Kaikissa seuraavissa ääniesimerkeissä soittojärjestys on Tone Filter -pois päältä –> mieto suodatus –> rajumpi diskanttileikkaus:

Hagström Northen Swede – kaulamikki/puhdas

Hagström Northen Swede – molemmat/puhdas

Hagström Northen Swede – tallamikki/puhdas

Hagström Northen Swede – kaulamikki/säröllä

Hagström Northen Swede – molemmat/säröllä

Hagström Northen Swede – tallamikki/säröllä


Ja tässä soivat molemmat Hagströmit yhdessä:

Hagström Viking Baritone + Northen Swede – videon audioraita



Maahantuoja: EM Nordic

Kiitos DLX Music Helsingille testisoittimien lainasta!


Hagström Viking Deluxe Baritone

katuhinta noin 600 €


+ soundi

+ soitettavuus

+ työnjälki

+ paino

+ mikrofonit


– testikitarassa hieman kulmikas otelaudan reunalistoitus


Hagström Northen Swede

katuhinta noin 1.200 €


+ valmistettu EU:ssa

+ soundi

+ monipuolisuus

+ Lundgren-mikrofonit

+ työnjälki

+ soitettavuus

+ paino