LTD M-1000 Deluxe review by ESP

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  • Sound: 6
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.2 Superb
  • Users' score: 9.1 (46 votes)
ESP: LTD M-1000 Deluxe

Price paid: $ 900

Purchased from: Sam Ash

Sound — 6
When I got the guitar, it felt great, and sounded decent. My main gripe was with the dual EMG's. They aren't very versatile, and just generally aren't for me. While I was happy enough to at least keep the guitar, I wasn't truly happy with it until I switched out the EMGs for a set of Seymour Duncans. Now, truth be told, it sounds significantly better than my PRS and Music Man JP 7 string. I'm rating it a 6 since they still come stock with EMGs, but in the case of adding Duncans, I'd rate it a 9.

Overall Impression — 9
This is a good match for you if you're the type that likes a relatively thin and flat neck, and who likes to have the whammy available to them. It's also good if you're into EMGs, or are comfortable with changing the pickups. I've been playing for longer than I can remember, have played more guitars than there are days in 10 years, and I consider this one to be a keeper. I'm completely content with this guitar. If I had to absolutely nitpick, I'd say it could lose the excessive abalone, but it's not a big issue.

Reliability & Durability — 8
This guitar withstands lots of Live playing. I play with it out 3-4 times a week, and it's yet to let me down. The hardware will last, assuming you're capable of maintaining a Floyd Rose guitar. The strap buttons were replaced, but that's not a big issue. A 15$ insurance plan, so to speak. It's also done a remarkably good job in the studio as well. I do a lot of recording for many artists, and I've yet to be asked to use a different setup. The finish isn't unbelievably durable, but it's definitely not the worst.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The factory set up was pretty good. Neck is straight, Floyd was level. The action was significantly higher than I like, but it was definitely playable. All hardware was in great condition, and it had no scratches either. It was exactly how a new guitar should be sold.

Features — 9
Made in 2007, this superstrat guitar features an Original Floyd Rose, two EMG 81 pickups, Neck Through Construction, 3 way blade Switch with 1 volume and 1 tone, along with Grover tuners. The neck is made of Maple with a rosewood fretboard. The body has Alder wings, and an 1/8" flame maple top.

29 comments sorted by best / new / date

    the high-end ltd are probably the best guitars you can get in this price range, but personally I also hate this "excessive abalone"...they would look so much better with a simple white binding or even no binding at all
    What came into their mind to put the glittery bindings on it? It's on all the LTD Deluxe series except for the EC-1000 (the black with gold bindings)and IMO it ruins the beauty of the guitar. But thats the only reason I wouldn't buy it
    Change the neck pickup to an EMG 85. For some reason it's one of the best-selling pickup sets out there (or both to SD blackouts ). Just one question : what's the tone like above the 12th fret? Good review.
    Dear Widow6, thank you so much for your review and oppinion. I have this guitar and it is amazing, but I feel like I want to replace EMGs with some other pick-ups. I want to have a powerful bridge pick-up for metal and also one for a warm, rich and fat solo sound in neck position. But I don't know what to choose. Can you recommend me some pick-ups? What Duncans did you use? Thank you so much again.
    can anyone tell me, wich they would rate better, an LTD m-1000 or a PRS se torero(both stock)? their pretty much the same hardware wise when it comes to stock hardware, exept the PRS has one EMG 85 and one EMG 81 pickup. i'm very interested in buying one of these guitars but still doin research into other brands. is like anyones opinion, thanks
    is it better compared to the schecter hellraiser c1fr. I am planning to buy either of these two. My concern is the playability of the neck.
    It's been quite some time since I looked at this, so my apologies. I'll try to answer a couple of questions. DmitryVTkachuk: I went with a pretty standard set - Duncan JB in the bridge, Jazz in the neck. The JB sounds exactly like you'd expect if you've played with a JB before. The jazz isn't really my thing, but a lot of people tend to like it, so it's a good place to start. If you don't like the EMGs, then it'll likely be an improvement. el brother: They started putting on the 100 series Floyd at the beginning of either 2009 or 2010 (can't remember which, but I'm leaning towards 2010) Mine has an OFR, since it came before that. If you're buying one, it's a good idea to know what year to see which bridge you'll be getting. There are still a few "old" ones out there new, so it's worth looking around.
    el brother
    the FR of this guitar is orignial or 1000 series?...some says is original and other says is 1000 series =S
    i think the reason the emgs are there is just because esp ltd figures it will sell with them. they have become common place on most metal styled guitars. I love emgs, active and passive, but they do mostly only have high gain in mind. they if you get some single coils or some coil splitting humbuckers you can coax some thick blues rock tones, but really they are a one trick pony. Mind you, that pony does that trick better than most anyone. short of maybe duncan blackouts.
    I got mine today, whoa, amazing guitar!!!! It's alder, however, it will work for metal! Recommended.
    Prices in Norway sucks, but anyways, I going to buy this for 11700kr (eqiuvalent to 1980$).
    i am going to be getting this guitar. it is SICK. i cant wait. the 81 sounds good in both positions too.
    purpose of this guitar is metal, so your not gonna bust out acoustic stuff on it... hence the emgs... i guess it just depends on what your gonna play whether you switch the pick ups... and if your an emg man... h-1000 with duncans looks nice... good review man
    High fret access is really great. I'm a pretty big guy (6' 4") and have big hands, and have never had a problem with it. The cutaway's nice and deep.
    nice review. i'm with you on the emg pickup. just not enough versatility. they do one thing well. i'm so glad i'm out of the super strat phase. selling the ones i had allowed me to pick up some tone monsters..... to each his own..... again, good review.
    Wiintruder: I did change it to an 85 at one point. A friend's guitar had one, so we did a quick swap (Thanks to the Quik Connect on the EMGs), and I still wasn't feeling it. Active pickups react differently to your playing, and compress the guitar to a point where it's hard to have much character outside of a general metal tone. To answer your question about the tone above the 12th fret -- that's one of my favorite aspects of this guitar. It's very easy to get a smooth lead sound out of it, and it can be coaxed into something really gritty if the situation calls for it. On the neck pickup (even with the EMGs) it was very articulate and even; the low frequencies never ate up your notes. The Dill: This guitar got an 8.2 because it's an honest rating. I've been playing for years on end, and I'm not the type to sugar coat anything. I've never played a guitar that was worth a 10 in every category. Period. You must remember, I'm a gigging, teaching, and recording musician. This is my profession. I have incredibly high standards. It also sounds like you have a pretty different guitar. Could you at least specify which model so a direct comparison could be made? If you're worried about too much feedback, it could either be a tad too much gain on the amp, or possibly some subpar wiring. I'd give both of those a look. Sanderd: I like the Abalone as well, but I think it's just a touch too much. I think the abalone binding on the fretboard could go, and be replaced on the body around the sides. I also liked the pictures of yours, the flame has a bit of angle to it, very nice looking. And yes, I knew about it being a metal-oriented guitar beforehand. I bought it with the intentions of eventually changing out the pickups, anyways. I tend to make modifications to my guitars until they're playing as best as I can have them. If you're thinking about changing pickups, definitely try the Duncan JB in the bridge. I tried it on other guitars, and wasn't quite as happy, but it works well in this one. The Jazz neck is nice, but it's not quite there for me just yet. Maybe a '59?
    TheDill: Not the same guitar, plus, high-end guitars tend to get a 'lower' rating than cheaper guitars, since the expectations are lower. (I guess, don't mean this bad at all) The Abalone is a nice touch, in my opinion. Then again, tastes differ. I've got some pictures in my profile or About the review by Widow6: dual EMG81 is, obviously, more oriented towards thrashmetal, cutting the mids. I'm thinking about swapping my pickups too, but you know this beforehand. It's a metal guitar I don't think I have the right amplification gear to judge about the tone too much.
    How this guitar get an 8.2..I have the same guitar but green and color and without the floyd...and it kicks ass..The pickups are awesome on it too...bad thing is when u play loud it has a bit more feedback sense the pickups arent active...but u get a noise suppressor and ur good to go...People need to learn to rate a guitar..
    i like the abalone! but on this one it's not used too excessivly compared to the mh-1000 and the h-1000/1001
    i have one and its great...ofcourse the pickups make this guitar annoying sometimes...but it has a great feel to it
    It's great to see someone finally doing a review on this guitar.. been waiting for it