Good old Washburn. Since 1883, we've been handing the boys from Chicago our shrapnel in exchange for their guitars, and we don't remember the last time they let us down. Business as usual?
As the first semi of the test, the HB30's body reminded TG just how damn wide these models get. It's not the kind of shape that lends itself to shred. The good news is that the maple body is light and thin enough to offer welcome control for mid-tempo rock and blues.
Despite a Les Paul-ish scale, we didn't find bends easy, but a comfortable board and great access meant moving pentatonic boxes was smooth and easy.
The 'classic' semi-acoustic sound is warm and mellow, and the HB30 turns in a decent reading, with the dark warmth of the 621 perfect for blues, the 623 ragged enough for rock, and the inherent sustain bringing a sense of cut-price class.
You'll find better semis out there than the Washburn HB30 model, but few at this kind of price point.