LTD F-404 Review

manufacturer: ESP date: 01/06/2010 category: Bass Guitars
ESP: LTD F-404
This bass has a neck-thru mahogany body, 5 piece maple/walnut neck, with 24XJ rosewood frets. It comes factory stock with active EMG 35DCs, and the EMG B64 active EQ.
 Sound: 10
 Overall Impression: 9.5
 Reliability & Durability: 9.5
 Action, Fit & Finish: 8
 Features: 10
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (2) 10 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.8
LTD F-404 Reviewed by: poopsmith666, on october 24, 2006
6 of 6 people found this review helpful

Features: This bass has a neck-thru mahogany body, 5 piece maple/walnut neck, with 24XJ rosewood frets. It is black with smoked chrome hardware. It comes factory stock with active EMG 35DCs, and the EMG B64 active EQ. Grover tuners, and a killer tribal inlay round this bass out. Another cool feature of this bass is that it is a four string with a 35" scale. It comes with huge strings (for a 4 string) 130-110-90-70, tuned to b-e-a-d. I have since changed it up a bit, and tuned it to drop C. It absolutely chugs! // 10

Sound: Love this bass. It is very versitile, and can be adjusted to fit about any sound. I play metal. Dialed in, it can churn out the deepest, darkest, evil bass you could ever need. I run it through a Morley power wah (only when needed), Tech 21 Bass Compactor, and a MXR Bass D.I.+ into my Ampeg head, Ampeg 4x10, and Ampeg 1x15 stack. I love it. The EMG active equipment in this bass make it a tone machine. Can't say enough about this basses sound quality. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: got this bass used, sort of. It had been previously owned, but for some reason the guy only had it a week or so. It was basically Brand New when I got it. He had it in a coffin case, which I changed out for the ESP F bass case. Anyway, it had no flaws. It was set up perfect from the guitar store I bought it from. I can't vouch for the ESP setup. The bass has zero fret buzz, and the action is smooth. Very easy to play. The EMG EQ is a solid three pot setup, and ESP has installed them perfectly. No noise, or rattles of any kind. I have yet to buy a Brand New top dollar, super high quality bass, but I believe this one was set up and just as nice as they come. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I have not had any problems with this bass. Everything seems to be good quality. I have not had to have the truss rod adjusted yet, which is saying a lot with the diverse weather around here. I would absolutley gig this without a backup, no question. Once, when I was playing a gig, my strap (old, frayed leather) snapped, the bass fell on the stage, and then slid off the stage. I was mortified. I thought fo' sho' it was totaled. But there was barely even a dent! This thing is a rock. // 10

Overall Impression: This is a great bass, my first ESP, and I am very happy with it. I may buy more ESPs in the future. If it were lost or stolen, I would be mega pissed, and try and find another, pronto. It is a very evil metal inspired bass, and it has some gothic gloom to it. This is by far my favourite bass, even better than my Squier P-Bass Special, or even my Ibanez SR500. All in all, this bass is the shizzle. // 10

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overall: 9
LTD F-404 Reviewed by: Funky21frets, on january 06, 2010
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: € 890

Purchased from: Lead Music (CH)

Features: This is the 2009 Made in Korea Model. Same specs as in the previous review, except mine came in normal E-A-D-G tuning. // 10

Sound: This is where it's underestimated. I play anything from contemporary Jazz to Rock to death metal, and I can get an amazing tone for everything. I Play this through a number of amps, but mostly through an Ashdown MAG 300 with a 2x10 or a 4x10 cab. I sometimes use it with an Ashdown Lomenzo Hyperdrive if I'm looking for that extra grind. This thing is VERY loud. I usually have to lay off the volume a notch to avoid the clip on the amp. Always use the -10Db switch on you're amp if you're running this through it. You can get a deep growling sound on the neck pickup, or a passive Jazzy tone on the bridge. This bass is very versatile despite it's looks, especially with the 3 band EQ. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: This bass was fairly well set up at first, but needed a couple of adjustments to be perfect (pickup hight, bridge hight). The finish on it is good, but not amazing, some of the controls come a bit loose now and then, but not a big deal. The Jack socket is rock solid and never comes loose as some basses tend to, and the Tuning heads are brilliant. This thing never goes out of tune even if I carry it around in a soft gig-bag all day. // 7

Reliability & Durability: This thing is solid as a rock, I've had a few scares with it but it takes a big hit to even get a scratch on it. I'm not 100% sure about the control knobs as said before, and the strap buttons came a bit loose at first, but since I've had strap locks put on, It's never been a problem. I would use this without a backup for a gig, only problem is it looks "mean", so might have to take a Fender along if I'm gonna play in a Jazz lounge. I have to admit I get a lot of comments of how cool it looks, but also a couple of remarks on it's aggressive curves. Lets face it, not the bass to have in a Jazz bar, even though it has the tone. // 9

Overall Impression: I've been playing 5 years and this was my first really good bass. I'm planning to get a Japanese Fender Jazz for a bit more high end and Precision. You can still tell this LTD is meant for Heavy music, and deserves to be used in Heavy music. This bass has such good tone and it's such a shame so many people use it ONLY for Metal, because you can't make full use of it. Then again it does the job better than most other basses. If it were stolen I would definatly get an LTD 400 series again, just for the tone, not the image. // 9

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