Viper Standard Review

manufacturer: ESP date: 11/15/2012 category: Electric Guitars
ESP: Viper Standard
The guitar is built like a rock, and feels very solid, yet is very light. The guitar can handle itself playing everything from blues to classic rock, however truly excels when playing metal, in standard or dropped tunings.
 Sound: 10
 Overall Impression: 9.3
 Reliability & Durability: 9.7
 Action, Fit & Finish: 9.7
 Features: 9.3
 Overall rating:
 9.2 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.6 
 Users rating:
 8.8 
 Votes:
 33 
reviews (3) 23 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 10
Viper Standard Reviewed by: AGowans, on november 15, 2012
5 of 6 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1259

Purchased from: Drum City Guitar Land

Features: - Set neck - Scale: 24.75 - Body: Mahogany - Neck/fretboard: mahogany/ebony - Inlays: dots w/ESP at 12th fret - Pickups: EMG-81 active set - Electronics: volume, tone, 3-way toggle - Hardware: black and Sperzel locking tuners - Bridge: gotoh tune-o-matic w/stop tailpiece - Binding: white (neck, headstock) - Frets: 24 XJ - Colors: black, camo, urban camo. // 10

Sound: Running through a Line 6 Spider II, the guitar produces a great full and deep sound with distortion and overdrive, with no noise when running through the bridge EMG 81. However when running clean on the neck 81, the tone is fairly bright, and for an improved clean tone it is advisable to "upgrade" to an EMG 60, with a slightly warmer sound. The guitar can handle itself playing everything from blues to classic rock, however truly excels when playing metal, in standard or dropped tunings. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: I can not comment as the guitar was not straight out of the box, and set-up before being delivered, therefore my comments upon the action are irrelevant. However in terms of finish, the guitar was flawless, with a very well cut nut, very quiet pick-up selector, and very solid controls. Upon receiving the guitar, I have yet to find any major or minor flaws. // 10

Reliability & Durability: The guitar is built like a rock, and feels very solid, yet is very light. The black Goth hardware is well fitted, and I have had no problems with the stop tail piece. The strap buttons are also solidly finished, giving the guitar a very strong feel, and the finish is once again flawless, and has yet to surcome to any wear or tear. Despite always gigging with a back-up, if this was the only guitar avaliable I would not question its reliability. The tuners are secure, the brige solid and I would have no problem walking on stage knowing there is no replacement. // 10

Overall Impression: I primarily play metal, but open to other genres, yet guitars versatility has allowed all genres to sound brilliant, despite it's slightly bright clean neck tone. The guitars body shape is often compared to a Gibson/Epiphone SG, but the Viper is slightly thicker and slanted, giving it a far more reliable and comfortable feel. // 10

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overall: 9.4
Viper Standard Reviewed by: jacks2axe, on november 15, 2012
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: A$ 1800

Purchased from: a shop

Features: The ESP Viper, wow! What a guitar. Made with perfection in Japan by master guitar builders. 24 jumbo frets begging to be played on a set neck so smooth and thin that you'll think you are caressing a supermodel. The neck is mahogany and fret board is ebony, the length is 24.75" and it has Dot inlays with ESP logo on the 12th fret. Sperzel locking machine heads ensure easy restring and tuning. EMG 81/85 pickup combo and a three way toggle switch, need I say anymore. Gotho tune-o-matic bridge. Satin camo finish that will stimulate your eyes and fingers, it feels unbelievable. Hard case included. // 9

Sound: With the active EMG pickups you have total controll over tone. You can do jazz, blues, country, rock and metal by simply adjusting the tone or volume controll on this guitar. I play it through a Mesa Boogie studio22+ and the EMG pickups heat the tubes to melting point, particularly when playing metal \m/ // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: This guitar was set up very well, nice low action, perfectly balanced and finished product. The highligh for me is the Finish on this guitar, the satin camo finish looks unbelievable and it feels like no other guitar that I have ever held. It is so smooth. All the hardware and construction feels as solid as it looks. There are no negatives at all. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I have total Faith in this guitar at my gigs, I only have a backup in case I snap a string, I did change the strap buttons to locking ones but I do that on all my guitars. I sweat alot when I play and so far the hardware and paint seems to be handeling my toxic ooze pretty well. I have been playing this guitar for 2 years now so this should tell you something of its reliability. // 9

Overall Impression: I love to play metal which is what this guitar was built for however I use it in my cover band as well and I have never owned such a versetile guitar. I've been playing for 22 years and have owned BC Rich and Jackson guitars that whole time. The ESP Viper is now my workhorse and I believe it will ahndle anything I throw at it. I gig every weekend, teach guitar on it every weekday and rehearse two weekdays every week. If there was one thing I wish it had, it would be a sturdier hard case but having said that, the one it came with has kept it safe so far. // 9

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overall: 9.4
Viper Standard Reviewed by: TheDev01dOne, on november 15, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: Made in Japan. Solid mahogany body, mahogany set neck with ebony fretboard and 24 frets. 24.75 scale length. Bone nut, Sperzel locking tuners, Tune-O-Matic bridge with stop tailpiece. Active EMG 81/60 humbucking pickups. 1 vol, 1 tone and a 3-way toggle. Jungle camouflage finish with black hardware. // 9

Sound: I play metal/hardcore so this guitar is pretty perfect for that. The active pickups deliver the high gain I need. I play through an Orange Thunderveb 200 head and it is a great combination for a punchy 'chugging' metal sound. The EMG 60 in the neck offers a great lead tone, creamier and darker voiced than the EMG 85. The active EMGs make it virtually noiseless even with very high gain settings. Seems to be a very mid, bassy voiced guitar with the solid mahogany body. This guitar isn't amazingly versatile but it wasn't built for that. It can handle anything from rock/hard rock/punk/hardcore/metal but is obviously not a jazz or softer rock guitar with the active EMG pickups. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: I bought this guitar second hand so I can't really comment about the factory setup. I can tell you my high E string keeps breaking and the nut needs a little filing to fit the gauge strings I use. Apart from that the guitar is flawless. The action is super low without buzz and easily adjusted anyway. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This guitar was built for gigging. It is very solid yet light and well balanced. The strap buttons seemed alright but I replaced them with Schaller straplocks as with all my guitars. The hardware is all top quality. The locking tuners give amazing tuning stability and the bridge gives great sustain. I can't see anything on this guitar breaking ever without some major unneccesary abuse. As with everyone who answers this question I would never gig without a backup but in worst case scenario Iwould feel confident playing it without a backup. The only thing I can forsee happening is a string breakage which could be really quickly fixed with the locking tuners. The finish is thick and robust and I can't see it wearing from normal playing. // 10

Overall Impression: If it was stolen I would buy another one if I could get it for the same price. They seem overpriced when buying Brand New, but most gear is in Australia. I own 8 guitars (at the moment) and have probably played thousands. It is one of the best guitars I've ever played and fits the style of music I play perfectly in sound, feel and looks. The only thing I could say I am not extremely happy with is the camo finish since not everyone likes that kind of think. I do believe it is available in black though. Overall it is a great, reliable, well built guitar. I would recommend it to anyone. // 9

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