Normally when instruments are completed at the major manufacturers, before dispatch they are subjected to a basic set up and play test.
As these instruments may be destined for all parts of the globe where the humidity can sometimes be radically different to the conditions where the instrument first came to life.
The initial set up is basic, and on arrival at final destination, the instrument may require fine tuning at the hands of the distributor.
Alas in this day and age of the internet & ebay, far fewer instruments arrive on our shores via an established distributor, and therefore some require a fair bit of t.l.c. from an experienced guitar technician before they can perform at their best.
Over and above initial set up a good technician will check your instrument for any pre-delivery faults and transit damage that is not immediately obvious, but a good set up should include the following;
- Checks on the case or gig bag for basic transit damage.
- Check all hardware is secure and in good condition.
- Check Jack socket, controls, switches and pick up height.
- Clean instrument, check frets, nut and bridge. Clean as required.
- Fit new strings of the customers choice, intonate and adjust nut and saddle as required.
Naturally each genre of guitar playing and style of guitar have different requirements and idiosyncrasies, and within each style, individual players have their own requirements.
Heavy strings / light strings, high action / low action, high wide frets / low narrow frets. So at the end of the day once you have invested in a good set up by an experienced tech. you will find it money well spent to get the very best out of your instrument and to let you get creative with ease.