Hey guys! I've narrowed my search to two very similar guitars, as mentioned in the title. I've always wanted an Explorer style guitar and have tried LTD's FX 260 Spalted Maple version (which, to my displeasure, sold at the local store before I had the chance to buy it.) Anyway, I'm reasonably certain that either the EX 360 or EX 400 would feel about the same in my hands.

I'm in the used market, and I've found an EX 400 for $400 online, and an EX 360 for $350. They look identical, and I'm not sure exactly what the differences are. I think the 400 was made in Korea and the 360 in Indonesia? Is the the 360 still a pretty decent guitar? I'm not after ESP quality, but I need something decent. I currently have a Schecter Blackjack ATX V that I'm very happy with.

So, I'd appreciate any advice you guys might have. If there's not a big difference in quality, I should mention that I'm planning on pulling the EMGs and putting in some passives -- probably SD Black Winters. I will also probably get a push/pull pot for the tone so I can coil-split them. If the EX 360 is good enough, that would save me some money for those changes. Thanks for your help?

(And if anyone knows where I can find a Spalted Maple version -- please tell me!
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

Pestilential Flood
I saw a spalted maple ex on my craigslist in toronto a few months ago actually. Ebay or local classifieds if you're in a big city help.

Good choice taking the EMG pickups out the only way to make the classic 81 85 set sound any good is to 18v mod them.

Try to play both guitars this is what I do
listen to both, play them through the same amp and tuning
look at the parts. One may have better tuners, one may have better ___
the body wood is very important
look for things like fret buzz or anything that would discourage you

at the end of the day though I'd rather have quality parts and a good overall sound. Worry about country made in last as pretty much every production model guitar will meed tp have something done to it to be perfect. Gibson and Ibanez the last 10 years aren't fretted as good as they used to be. One customer (i do electronics) told me he tried a gibson and the action was insanely high and still buzzed.

for wiring mods though good idea doing the coiltaps. The other alternative is series/parallel wiring which are hum cancelling coiltaps. Regular coiltaps aren't as awesome after you try this. For the tone knob if you never use the tone I mod all my guitars with pickups as hot as black winters to the fender greasebucket mod. I'm no fender guy but this mods useful it boosts bass so if your pickups have too much noise at super high gain settings it fixes it.
^^Thanks for the response! Unfortunately, I won't be able to try either guitar -- the nearest GC is an 8 hour drive away and the local store doesn't carry LTD unless they pick them up on trade. My local Craigslist is a joke unless you're into Casio keyboards and Squire Strats...

From what I can tell, the only difference between the 360 and 400 is where they are made. They're both mahogany, rosewood fretboard, EMG 81/60, etc. A little bit of setup is expected, I don't mind that.

I will look into series/parallel wiring as you suggested. I don't have a lot of experience with changing the wiring in guitars but I did change pickups once and it worked fine. Part of the fun is tinkering with this stuff anyway. I do like the SD Blackouts in my Schecter, but I don't want a second guitar with actives -- as I've found that passive pups sound better for cleans. Everyone I've talked to says the SD Black Winters are outstanding pickups, and not just for metal -- for cleans and lighter rock too. My goal is to turn this into a very versatile guitar, but still be able to bring the brootz if need be.
Atmospheric dark metal w/ black and death metal influences:
(My Soundcloud page):

Pestilential Flood