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#1
Okay, so I have decided that the things I want are;

Maple fretboard
At least one humbucker
A Floyd style trem

So of these two guitars which do yall think is better?

ESP LTD MH-103


Kramer Striker FR-244SM
Last edited by LuthierofTexas at Jul 11, 2008,
#4
i would take out the black esp entirely the finish on the first one looks cooler
honestly, they both work great. ive tried both and the only difference i found was some slightly different neck feelings. so that comes down to your personal opinion. I like esp's better cuz they fit my hands well
#5
Neither, the trem is going to crap out on you.
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#6
The old Kramer Focus series were made by ESP before they made it big. Try to find an old Kramer, though the neck is comparable to a Schecter.
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#7
Well Im not too terribly concerned about how long the trem will last cause I can change the trem to a better one later on down the road. There just arent many high end guitars like that with awesome trems and maple fretboards. And especially not in the budget that Im looking at right now.
#8
Don't those new single-hum BC riches have maple fretboards? I think they're called gunslingers.

You could always have a look for a used old Charvel, they usually go pretty cheap.
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#10
I know nothing about those guitars, but go with the Kramer because I have always loved Seinfeld.
#11
Quote by JRC7391
I know nothing about those guitars, but go with the Kramer because I have always loved Seinfeld.

ive playued them both, the kramer is infinitely superior. i wouldn't even have to play them to know that, because LTD uses pretty crappy parts imo.
I can't stand watching people waste their money on horrible gear.
#12
Quote by timi_hendrix
Don't those new single-hum BC riches have maple fretboards? I think they're called gunslingers.

You could always have a look for a used old Charvel, they usually go pretty cheap.


yeah, that's what i'd do (the bc-rich).

FWIW, the kramer trems have the wrong-size studs for a direct swap to OFR.

EDIT: my kramer trem hasn't actually crapped out on me yet (to be fair, i don't use it much), just it's not very good and responsive.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

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#13
Well my only beef with the Gunslinger is that its only got 22 frets and is harder then hell to find. and the ones I have found are a tad bit out of my price range.

And the old Charvel's are about the same.
#14
Quote by Dave_Mc
yeah, that's what i'd do (the bc-rich).

FWIW, the kramer trems have the wrong-size studs for a direct swap to OFR.

EDIT: my kramer trem hasn't actually crapped out on me yet (to be fair, i don't use it much), just it's not very good and responsive.


"not very good and responsive". Exactly how?. Cause i'm thinking of buying one of those too.
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#15
The MH-103 is actually decent. I played a few m-53, m-103 and mh-103s and I was really surprised at the quality for the price, but I have no idea how they hold up down the line.

I haven't played the kramer so I don't know about that one.


I really wish the gunslinger retro was easier to find =(
I actually really want one.
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#16
Ok, so its still kinda torn between the ESP and the Kramer. lol

From the people who have played either or both, what are some perks and downsides to each?
#17
From those two choices, I'd go with the Kramer.

Maple fretboard + decent LFR = Jackson DK2M.
#18
Generally, I would take an ESP/LTD over a Kramer, but not THAT LTD to THAT Kramer.

So go with the Kramer.

Or a Jackson like he said^
GEAR:

Jackson Pro Series RR3 (w/ EMG 81/85 combo)
Schecter Gryphon
Epiphone SG G-310
Squier Standard Strat (w/ Fender Strat pups)
Roland Cube 20X
Boss ME-50
#19
I was thinking about buying the Kramer just to beat around until next spring when I get a Jackson SL2.

I want to make it the ultimate sleeper.
Gibson.
#20
Quote by LuthierofTexas
Well my only beef with the Gunslinger is that its only got 22 frets and is harder then hell to find. and the ones I have found are a tad bit out of my price range.

And the old Charvel's are about the same.


oh ok, i forgot 24 frets was a requirement.


Quote by El Cumanés
"not very good and responsive". Exactly how?. Cause i'm thinking of buying one of those too.


pretty stiff, basically. i suspect it needs a neck shim too.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

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Et tu, br00tz?
#21
Quote by foxthor_rider2k
Generally, I would take an ESP/LTD over a Kramer, but not THAT LTD to THAT Kramer.

What do you mean by this?
Quote by foxthor_rider2k
Or a Jackson like he said^

Well the Jackson is a bit more then what I wanted to pay right now.
#22
Both are nice, especially the Kramer.

General question, why not a humbucker in the neck?
#23
Well I have just never really found alot of purpose for a humbucker in the neck. I mean, they can be nice to have. But I just kind of like that single coil sound out of a neck pickup alot better.
#24
Quote by LuthierofTexas
What do you mean by this?


I mean if it was a real ESP, like a signature, or an ESP Standard Series guitar, like the ESP Viper or Eclipse, I would say go with the ESP.

But since its LTD vs. Kramer, that Kramer is much nicer than that LTD.

Quote by LuthierofTexas
Well the Jackson is a bit more then what I wanted to pay right now.


How much is your budget?
GEAR:

Jackson Pro Series RR3 (w/ EMG 81/85 combo)
Schecter Gryphon
Epiphone SG G-310
Squier Standard Strat (w/ Fender Strat pups)
Roland Cube 20X
Boss ME-50
#25
Honestly, right now, about $350. I dont play more then about an hour or so a day and its just kind of noodling around, so I dont really see a need in having some expensive signature series guitar.
#26
Well, I'm not attempting to change your opinion, but you could always go with a nice Ibanez RG. The RG350MDX, to be exact.

It doesn't have a "Floyd Rose" but it has an Edge III which is virtually the same thing and is licensed by Floyd Rose I believe. It also has the H-S-S configuration and a maple neck. It's pushing your $350 a little, but only by about $50.

If you're strictly limited to $350, don't worry about this and get the Kramer.
GEAR:

Jackson Pro Series RR3 (w/ EMG 81/85 combo)
Schecter Gryphon
Epiphone SG G-310
Squier Standard Strat (w/ Fender Strat pups)
Roland Cube 20X
Boss ME-50
#27
Sorry for the double post, I just dont like editing posts.

The thing is, in the price range Im looking at there arent a whole lot of 24 fret, maple fret board, double locking trem guitars out there. There are honestly like 3 or 4 different styles and a couple of lower end variations on those styles. And they are all pretty much the same style of guitar. So now, that means that I have to start looking at quality and reviews of what other people are saying to find out which ones are better then others.

I have heard great things about older Kramers from the 80's, and I have heard great things about ESP guitars. Both of those guitars I posted originally are nothing more then intermediate guitars, and really thats all that I need. I kind of assume going into it, that both are going to have lower quality hardware, and thats fine cause I honestly figured I would upgrade that all later. But I have heard stories of newer Kramers having fitment issues with the neck and neck pockets and I havent heard that about the ESP. But maybe that was just a fluke. Maybe the Kramer got damaged in shipping. I dont know. But then I also have to look at appearance, cause I dont want an ugly guitar. And for me the ESP is the best looking of the two.

Now some of the things that are weighing on me, are that the Kramer has an alder body. I like that. But the ESP uses basswood, which is used in pretty much all Ibanez guitars, and basswood is a good wood. I like the carved top of the ESP and the cutaway design on it.

So Im just really torn. I know there are better guitars out there, but I think these two will be the best two out of the pack for what Im wanting. I just cant chose between the two. I mean, I could always order the ESP and if I dont like it then I can send it back and get the Kramer to try it out. I just dont know.
#28
I know what you mean, I've been there, too.

If that's the case, go with your gut. I personally would take the Kramer. Wait no, ESP...

Yes, I know exactly how you feel. -_-
GEAR:

Jackson Pro Series RR3 (w/ EMG 81/85 combo)
Schecter Gryphon
Epiphone SG G-310
Squier Standard Strat (w/ Fender Strat pups)
Roland Cube 20X
Boss ME-50
#29
Quote by LuthierofTexas
Well I have just never really found alot of purpose for a humbucker in the neck. I mean, they can be nice to have. But I just kind of like that single coil sound out of a neck pickup alot better.


no worries, just be aware that those rails in the kramer don't sound all that much like true singles.


Quote by foxthor_rider2k
Well, I'm not attempting to change your opinion, but you could always go with a nice Ibanez RG. The RG350MDX, to be exact.

It doesn't have a "Floyd Rose" but it has an Edge III which is virtually the same thing and is licensed by Floyd Rose I believe. It also has the H-S-S configuration and a maple neck. It's pushing your $350 a little, but only by about $50.

If you're strictly limited to $350, don't worry about this and get the Kramer.


i'd avoid that ibanez; i wouldn't want to trust the trem.

(that being said i wouldn't want to trust the trem on the kramer or ltd either)


Quote by LuthierofTexas
Sorry for the double post, I just dont like editing posts.

The thing is, in the price range Im looking at there arent a whole lot of 24 fret, maple fret board, double locking trem guitars out there. There are honestly like 3 or 4 different styles and a couple of lower end variations on those styles. And they are all pretty much the same style of guitar. So now, that means that I have to start looking at quality and reviews of what other people are saying to find out which ones are better then others.

I have heard great things about older Kramers from the 80's, and I have heard great things about ESP guitars. Both of those guitars I posted originally are nothing more then intermediate guitars, and really thats all that I need. I kind of assume going into it, that both are going to have lower quality hardware, and thats fine cause I honestly figured I would upgrade that all later. But I have heard stories of newer Kramers having fitment issues with the neck and neck pockets and I havent heard that about the ESP. But maybe that was just a fluke. Maybe the Kramer got damaged in shipping. I dont know. But then I also have to look at appearance, cause I dont want an ugly guitar. And for me the ESP is the best looking of the two.

Now some of the things that are weighing on me, are that the Kramer has an alder body. I like that. But the ESP uses basswood, which is used in pretty much all Ibanez guitars, and basswood is a good wood. I like the carved top of the ESP and the cutaway design on it.

So Im just really torn. I know there are better guitars out there, but I think these two will be the best two out of the pack for what Im wanting. I just cant chose between the two. I mean, I could always order the ESP and if I dont like it then I can send it back and get the Kramer to try it out. I just dont know.


alder is a tonewood as much as basswood is.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#30
ah i just realised you weren't slagging off alder. sorry.
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#31
For $350 you can find an 80s Kramer Focus or if very lucky, a Pacer.
1992 Ibanez S540 sol
1988? Kramer Pacer Mutt
#32
Quote by LuthierofTexas
Well I have just never really found alot of purpose for a humbucker in the neck. I mean, they can be nice to have. But I just kind of like that single coil sound out of a neck pickup alot better.


Makes sense, those two you originally showed almost look better for just having the single humbucker in the bridge, especially with the styling. I've never played a HSH, sadly... man I'm old school.
#33
Trust me guys, I have played 80's models Kramers, and if I could find one again, I would be all over it. But sadly those are hard to come by around here.

And yeah, I love alder bodies, but I love basswood too. That makes it even harder of a decision.

But at the same time Dave, you said that you played a Kramer and felt the trem to be bad, the neck could use a shimming, and the trem studs are the wrong size to upgrade to an OFR. Plus the stock pups dont sound like true singles, which makes it all the worse for me. I mean I love the vintage 80's hair-metal look of the Kramers, but all those points make it sound like a dud deal.

Does anyone know if the trem studs on the ESP are the same size as the Floyds?
#36
Well you didn't say 24 frets in the first post. The only thing missing would be the maple fretboard and I know I would rather sacrifice the maple and get the Kramer than settle for either of the guitars you posted.
1992 Ibanez S540 sol
1988? Kramer Pacer Mutt
#38
Quote by LuthierofTexas
But at the same time Dave, you said that you played a Kramer and felt the trem to be bad, the neck could use a shimming, and the trem studs are the wrong size to upgrade to an OFR. Plus the stock pups dont sound like true singles, which makes it all the worse for me. I mean I love the vintage 80's hair-metal look of the Kramers, but all those points make it sound like a dud deal.

Does anyone know if the trem studs on the ESP are the same size as the Floyds?

i've got that kramer, lol. i rarely play it to be honest.

no idea about the esp, to be honest. jackson pros are, i think, direct swaps for OFRs, but they're more expensive...
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#39
^And they're worth every penny. An actual Jackson pro would give a new USA Jackson a run for its money.
1992 Ibanez S540 sol
1988? Kramer Pacer Mutt
#40
i've never been that impressed with the jackson pros to be honest... EDIT: nothing i can put my finger on (well, other than the dodgy trem, and i guess that can be swapped), they just don't really do anything for me.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
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