LTD EC-400 review by ESP

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.6 (69 votes)
ESP: LTD EC-400
10

Price paid: $ 600

Purchased from: Music123.com

Sound — 8
In the case you play metal and you are not too worried about using clean tone, this is the guitar for you. Its mahogany body and EMG-81 pickups give a nice rich sound -- the guitar actually has decent variety for only having to EMG-81s. EMGs have a broad bandwidth that's better for harmonic pull-offs and chord definition. These pickups bring out the characteristics of your amp way more then any other pickups. You can hear every little tweak of a know, and totally change the sound of your amp, making it sound like things you never thought possible with passive pickups. Great for hard rock/metal music but the clean sound isn't that good. So it's hard to get a decent blues/jazz/soft rock sound on this guitar.

Overall Impression — 9
Overall this guitar is great for any heavy stuff. It has an awesome tone and fast fretboard. Alot lighter then a Les Paul and alot cheaper. This guitar is a very good mix of quality components at a decent price. The only evident disadvantage of this baby is its weak clean sound. You could hardly be disappointed in this guitar, only if you don't like hard rock and metal!

Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar is very solid. It's very durable, the finish doesn't dent easily, and all the parts are good quality and strong. With all its similarity to Gibson (Epiphone) Les Paul this guitar is much lighter. But it doesnt mean more cheaper and more crappy wood has been used, quite in opposite -- more better and quality wood, as well as more comfortable back and sides. Besides, this ESP model features a "double-action" truss-rod design. Unlike a single truss-rod, this one is adjustable in two different directions. This means that you'll never run into a situation where the neck has "run out of adjustment." Very helpful.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The factory set-up of this guitar was very good. Its action was quite low without any buzzing. The pickups were adjusted fine. Furthermore, this is a very fast guitar. The extra jumbo frets are somewhat large but not too big. It's a very easy and smooth playing guitar.

Features — 10
This is a set-neck guitar with active EMG-81 humbuckers, plus Grover tuners and the awesome Earvana Compensated Nut for incredible tuning accuracy. ESP builds this guitar with a mahogany body, a 3-piece mahogany neck, a rosewood fingerboard with 22 XJ frets and a Tune-O-Matic bridge with a stop tailpiece. It's a classic design with all the updates already done for you! - Construction: set neck - Scale: 24.75" - Body: mahogany - Neck/fretboard: 3-piece mahogany/rosewood - Inlays: flags wtih model name at 12th fret - Pickups: EMG-81 active set - Electronics: 2 volume, tone, 3-way toggle - Hardware: black + earvana compensated nut & Grover tuners - Bridge: Tune-O-Matic with stop tailpiece - Frets: 24 XJ. Grover tuners are well known for their precise gear ratio, tuning stability and durability. They make a great complement to the other upscale features of EC-400.

26 comments sorted by best / new / date

    ibanezeric82
    I love mine. The only gripe I have is that I've had some tuning issues that come and go. Not sure if it's the nut or the tuners or the bridge, but I've done everything I could to make all three better and it still goofs up here and there. My Floyd Rose Ibanez stays in tune better.
    SamuraiLP
    Looking at this for my next guitar Would you happen to know if the inlays have to be flags? I suppose I should just look it up since i have ESP.com as one of my favorites
    Good_Lord
    I like this guitar , seriously ! I'm not fond of LP shapes usually , but that cherry red finish is just awesome !
    dementiacaptain
    i would like to correct myself. i mistakenly put comments about the 81 where they should be about the 60 and vice versa.
    ibanez77
    MacMan2001 wrote: LouieTM wrote: Does anyone here have 1st hand experience with the newer EC-401? And what are the differences compared to the EC-400? I was wondering that. It's got the same pickups, tuners etc as the 400 so I'm not sure. I don't know if the 400 was available in sunburst and in faded cherry sunburst, but the 401 is. Maybe it's just cosmetic differences like that?
    Yeah, the only thing thats teh difference between the EC 400 and the EC 401 ( as well as the MH 400 and MH 401 ) is the finishes and colors, tehy are the same guitar, i was talking to teh guy who brings them in at my local shop and he says no difference what so ever except for teh finish thing. Hop this helps
    ibanez77
    sgwielder wrote: ummm, yea o heard that it has the 81 and 60s in it. it look s nice, so long as it sounds good, im gettin ne ! btw anyone no if there is sumwhere u can get soundclips of guitars and amps?
    EMG has clips of teh sound that coems out of their pick ups, i recommend checking the site out
    MacMan2001
    LouieTM wrote: Does anyone here have 1st hand experience with the newer EC-401? And what are the differences compared to the EC-400?
    I was wondering that. It's got the same pickups, tuners etc as the 400 so I'm not sure. I don't know if the 400 was available in sunburst and in faded cherry sunburst, but the 401 is. Maybe it's just cosmetic differences like that?
    LouieTM
    Does anyone here have 1st hand experience with the newer EC-401? And what are the differences compared to the EC-400?
    liam2309
    this is basically james hetfields guitar but without the silver colour and them cool graphics.....I'M GOING TO.....save up for the ****er cause i'm skint lol
    LgLagro
    Is it easy to play on the frets lower on the neck? Would it be difficult if I wanted to play on say the 19th or 20th frets?
    Rish666
    I Have had the EC-400 For around 4-5 years now and It is a great Metal And rock Guitar and it's not bad for Funk as well but when it comes to blues and Jazz I'm sorry it's Just not all there A bit to bright and cut's a bit to much, Overall one of the best rock/metal guitars I've ever Played and I'm Proud to own one. and Yeah Emg 81/60
    pe_666
    what do you mean by weak clean soun? weaker than the clean sound of a squier strat or weaker then a guitar in its price range?
    joe124
    i cant wait to get my hands on this guitar,soonjust hafto wash dishes a couple more weeks.
    Nocomment
    Actually, alot of ltds used to be just two 81s but now theyver changed. ECs have 81 and 60s (by the way 60s suck.) And the viper has an 81 and 85
    lechero
    I think in 2005 they started putting in the 81/60 set. I bought an ec-400 about a year ago. At the time, most of the one's at the store had 81/60. The one I bought, the sunburst finish which doesn't sell as fast as the black and red, was still at the store from the previous year and it had a set of 81's (the sunburst now comes with duncans). You can tell what pickups it has based on the color of the EMG logo.
    VaultAngel
    I own an Epiphone Les Paul Studio Gothic, but my next step up is the EC-400, yeah! I've played it a few times at dealers and stuff, and from what ive seen/heard it's possibly the cheapest guitar for it's quality ever. It's absolutely awesome.
    sgwielder
    ummm, yea o heard that it has the 81 and 60s in it. it look s nice, so long as it sounds good, im gettin ne ! btw anyone no if there is sumwhere u can get soundclips of guitars and amps?
    This_Kidd
    erm..... doesn't it have an emg 81/60 setup, the esp site says it does. And aren't 60's supposed to be good for cleans?