Price paid: $ 420
Purchased from: Local Music Store
Sound — 10
This guitar is great for metal, hard rock, or grunge. I used a Peavey TKO 50 (I think) at first and it sounded wicked. I later plugged it into my Vox Berkley Solid State (again, not totally sure. I think both amps may be discontinued) and when I threw in the slightest bit of reverb, it sounded great. It isnt very noisy for being a stock guitar. It can create a lot of great sounds though. Anything from metal, down to a great clean sounding guitar.
Overall Impression — 10
With my band playing punk, thrash, grunge, metal, and hard rock, its a perfect match. I have only been playing 3 years, and I have a First Act Strat and B.C. Warlock Bronze. I own a DS-1 distortion and 2 amps which I said above, I don't know the right model. The only thing I would have asked before buying, is how much will this keep me away from my girlfriend? If it was stolen, I would find the guy and beat his ass all the way up Broadway. I love the color and the sound range. I don't like the pickups alot thouhg. They could be more active. My favorite feature is the Floyde. Its great for whammy playing. I compared it to other ESP models, but its a good guitar for the money. If I could change one thing, I would put in a Dimebucker in the bridge and an EMG-81 in the neck (I have a wierd wiring technique that makes this combo kill).
Reliability & Durability — 9
I have played with this guitar Live on numerous occasions, and everything, with polishing and cleaning and the average check-up, seems like it will be in-tact for a long while. The finish is very thick, so it will take a LONG time for it to wear. I only use one other guitar when I play, and thats for songs in Standard. So I could say yes, no need for a back-up!
Action, Fit & Finish — 6
I have no idea how it arrived from the factory. The shop did everything for me. The only flaw I have noticed was that a wire kept on getting grounded, which made it silent through the amp. It was a simple fix, but needing to be a critic, I have to give it a lower rating.
Features — 9
This guitar was made in Indonesia. It has a 24 extra jumbo frets, 25.5" scale thin U shaped maple neck/rosewood fingerboard with neck-thru construction. The top is flamed maple and the body is agathis. My model is in a See-Thru Black Cherry, but it also comes in a See-Thru Black. It follows the Stratocaster body style and has a Special Floyde Rose. It has a volume and tone control with a Push/Pull Coil Tap on the tone knob. It has a neck and bridge pickups, both ESP LH-301. Locking tuners from ESP and they gave me my choice of strings to string it: DR Black Beauties.