Price paid: $ 2280
Purchased from: BMusic
Sound — 8
This guitar has a good broad tonal range. In the neck position there is heaps of warmth and sustain. Clean or distorted the notes have a nice rounded feel to them. Very well suited to smooth legatto and jazz style runs. The bridge position has a healthy, sharp, clean edged sound to it that really comes to life when distorted. Plenty of ballsy low down rhythm guts to it and crisp biting highs. The only down side is the lack of coil tapping given that it has two humbuckers. It would've given the guitar another level of flexability had they included a 5-way selector Switch and coil tapping. All up though sweet tones across the board.
Overall Impression — 9
My main style of music is original pop/rock which this guitar has allready proven is well suited to. I would definitely recommend this guitar to someone else and would definitely replace it if it were stolen (I would also probably hunt down the people that stole it seeing as these babies are pretty rare right now). All up this package is an absolute gem and a definite keeper!
Reliability & Durability — 8
I will be using this guitar almost exclusively from now on and can't see any reason for changing back to any of my previous first line guitars. Given the quick ease of string replacement and fixed bridge configuration you could get away with playing a gig on this without a backup - not that I would though. This guitar looks like it will easily handle the work load of steady gigging.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The stand out feature of this guitar is it's awesome visual appearance. The finish is top notch and the setup was pretty much spot on. I've since had the guitar professionaly setup and it's hands down the nicest axe to look at or play in my collection. It's slightly smaller in some spots than my LTD H-1000 (Horizon) and definitely lighter all up but it has a perfectly weighted balance to it. I spent hours playing it seated the first night I had it and it just felt so natural and well rounded. Playing upright with a strap is no dramas either because of it's reduced overall weight. All the hardware is top rate and the additions of Schaller strap locks is a nice little extra. I'm also a big fan of sperzel tuners now so it's another plus that this bad boy has them.
Features — 10
All the specs are available from the BMusic web site www.bmusic.com.au, but in short, standard ESP Horizon style mahogany body with quilted maple veneer top based on the custom model used by Australian virtuoso guitarist Brett Garsed (www.brettgarsed.com). Seymour Duncan JB and 59 Vintage pickups with tone and volume controls and 3-way toggle Switch. Sperzel tuners, schaller strap locks, string thu body and fixed bridge. Comes with natural binding on the body, neck and headstock. This guitar is absolutley stunning to look at. The quilted maple finish on mine is the "Black Aqua" which is a deep aqua/blue colour and looks incredible under lights and photographed. Comes with a rock solid ESP hard case and fretboard travel protector.