Price paid: £ 450
Purchased from: GuitarGuitar Epsom
Sound — 10
I mainly play songs from bands like Killswitch Engage, Bullet For My Valentine, Metallica, Atreyu etc... And I have to say this guitar suits it perfectly, the EMG's are incredibly responsive and the afterburner is a good boost for a solo or if you want that dirt sound when playing cleaning. I play through a Line 6 POD HD300 but have also spent extensive playing this axe through a 6505+ and I have to say it sounded amazing on both - the bridge pick up the 85 I think is amazing - especially when playing clean.
Overall Impression — 9
For the music I play, and the price I paid for this axe - it is incredibly, sadly if it were stolen I couldn't buy a new one as ESP don't produce it anymore! My favourite feature has to the bridge pup - it sounds amazing and I'm considering a pick up swap in my passive Jackson for the same pair If I could change anything, I would make the higher frets more accessible (there's no cutaway) and put 24 frets in instead!
Reliability & Durability — 10
I'm sure this guitar can withstand live usage and the hardware seems of the highest standard - compared to my Jackson DK2M it feels a lot more solid. The finish is immaculate and I cannot see it being ruined unless I tamper with it myself.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
If you guys have a read a thread I posted on the axe, there was a slight problem of a dead fret - but took it back to shop and got fixed so its all good. Aside that, everything was set up exactly how I wanted it low action correct pup height etc... So a lower mark for the initial problem...
Features — 9
This guitar was made in Korea (ESP series below the 401 are made in Indonesia), it has 22 frets a rosewood fretboard and a damn thin and fast with a lovely mahogany body. The inlays are a pearl bat inlays which are pretty meh to be honest! It has a white finish, with a red dripping blood graphic coupled with an EMG 81/85 set, an EMG afterburner and a original floyd rose - it is pretty amazing! I paid 450 for this axe (it was 1400) brand new in a end of line sales - in my eyes a friggin bargain! And any readers in the west or south of London, get yourselves down to guitarguitar in Epsom, brilliant service, they set the guitar up for me to Drop C within in 30 mins and gave me a nice gig bag half price!