Sound — 9
It suits my playing style of Metal like Slayer, Metallica, Megadeth (they use mainly ESP guitars) and some rock like GN'R sounds OK because of the sound from the active pickups (but not perfect). I use a Crate MX15R (very small) with no effects and it still sounds good with/wo amp distortion. I would say It has a very varied sound from the Emg-81's, but it has a rather deep, full sound on any setting.
Overall Impression — 9
I have been playing for 5 months and own an amp, but that is about it. Yes, the one major flaw of this guitar is that it has no tremolo system, and I wish I had asked about it first. If this was ever or stolen, someone might find an unpleasant surprise at their doorstep, or if it was lost, I would definitely save up and get another one. My favorite feature is the shape, because it looks great, while sounding awesome. I chose this one after months of searching because of the way it felt to me, the price, and the tone quality. If only it had an installed tremolo system, it would be near perfect for the money.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I have only played for 5 months, so I havent played live yet, but it is very durable (except the satin finish can get scratched) and it sounds great on high volume, so I would play it live.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
Everything on this guitar is great, pickups were perfect (no buzz), no factory errors, everything was awesome.
Features — 9
This is a great guitar, made in 2005 in the ESP assembly line in Korea. It has 24 XJ frets, 25.5" scale. It has an ebony fretboard (I am not sure of what) but it feels great and it has an all-around black satin finish. It has a unique, but heavy metal-like shape and string-through body. It has 1 volume, 1 tone, and a 3-way selector Switch and Emg-81 active pickups. It has Grover tuners that stay put well. I bought a hard case for $90 that is impenetrable, because nothing hurts my guitar!