Trying to decide between a esp ltd ec 256 and a Yamaha revstar 320. I haven't played the esp but hear a lot of good things about it. Played the Yamaha and it is awesome guitar for it's price. Only concern with the Yamaha is it is built using nato wood. It sounds good but would it be a worthy investment as I am looking to upgrade the pick ups down the line? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
I would go with the ESP LTD EC-256 FM if you are concerned about the quality of the wood.  This guitar comes with a mahogany body and a beautiful flame maple top.  The FM stands for flame maple.  Especially if you are going to trade the pickups.  It should be a little cheaper if you check musician's friend.
Both guitars are likely made out of NATO wood or some other mahogany substitute. No guitar in that price range is going to be made from real mahogany even if their advertising seems to imply that they are. Manufacturers get away with calling their non-mahogany built guitars 'mahogany' all the time. Mostly due to the authorities who police what is advertised being unable to visually tell the difference between the substitute and the real thing. And the term 'mahogany' is often used by manufacturers for marketing purposes, based on it's similarity in physical properties to real mahogany rather than any strict scientific definition.

There is nothing about NATO that makes it objectively an inferior wood to real mahogany. Other than the real thing being far easier to work/machine. But that's not going to be relevant to you when the guitar has already been built. The top on the LTD EC256 is a paper-thin flame maple veneer. Again, you're not going to get a carved full-thickness maple cap in that price range. The flame maple veneer is purely there to look pretty. But then so is a flamed maple cap for the most part.

I think people tend to allow this sort of thing to influence their buying decisions more than it really warrants. For the price, both guitars are pretty par for the course.
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Last edited by T00DEEPBLUE at Oct 6, 2017,
I'd say those two are pretty even in quality, myself, I'd go for the flame top because veneer or not they look good and it's not like Nato wood with a veneer is going to have an audible difference to real mahogany with a full maple cap.  

Anyone who tells you otherwise is a cork sniffer!  
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Last edited by Evilnine at Oct 6, 2017,
I can't stand yamaha, i would go with Esp Ltd, had one but higher model (mh 417) Lovely guitars