The Kramer MIJ 1983 Baretta reissue is here at last. Kramer, once the world’s most sought-after guitar brand, owes much of its success to Eddie Van Halen’s endorsement in 1981.
Kramer MIJ 1983 Baretta
In the early ’80s, the company introduced the iconic Baretta, heavily inspired by Van Halen’s custom-made Kramer 5150.
The brand reached its pinnacle in 1983 when it became the first to feature the revolutionary Floyd Rose tremolo system as a standard offering. Now, in a nod to its history, Kramer has released the 1983 Baretta Reissue, promising an authentic recreation of this classic instrument.
The 1983 Baretta Reissue faithfully recreates the “holy grail” of Kramers, with meticulous attention to detail. Utilizing 3D imaging, Kramer has accurately replicated the original body and neck profiles.
Like the original 1983 Baretta, it features a bright, punchy maple body and a lightning-fast, unfinished maple neck with a 16″ radius, rosewood fretboard, and 22 frets.
The oversized headstock, equipped with Gotoh SG360 Right-Angle tuners, pays homage to its heritage. At the other end of the scale, a Floyd Rose Original double-locking tremolo system ensures pitch-perfect performance.
Finish-wise, the 1983 Baretta Reissue is available in two options: Ebony and Classic White.
However, there are a couple of noteworthy deviations from the original 1983 specs. The pickup has been updated to a Seymour Duncan ’59, replacing the Schaller Golden 50 humbucker found in the original models.
This change, while likely due to the availability of original units, is an intriguing choice.
The decision to favor Seymour Duncan over Kramer’s own PAF-like Eruption humbucker, created in collaboration with Van Halen’s former luthier Jim DeCola, adds an interesting layer to this reissue.
Guitar Bomb Verdict
The Kramer 1983 Baretta Reissue is possibly a must-have for guitar enthusiasts (of a certain age), and collectors alike.
Despite being a Japanese build, it pays a fitting tribute to the legacy of the original USA-made Kramers. Priced at $2,199, it’s pretty pricey for a single pickup guitar, however, anyone interested in this model will only want one pickup anyway.