LTD Viper-100 FM review by ESP

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 8.4 (66 votes)
ESP: LTD Viper-100 FM

Price paid: $ 159.99

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 10
These stock ESP LH-150 humbuckers are a vast improvement over the LH-100s that I had in my old LTD M-15 for sure. These have a much more fuller tone to them and more sustain. IMO though, if you have the height too close to the strings, you are going to get a muddy tone, but then again, that's with any guitar. I have mine set almost even with the edge of the pickup rings and because of that, I'm able to get some nice Classic Rock and Blues sounds with this guitar besides Heavy metal, which this guitar has a major reputation for. It dos sound great through my DigiTech RP-50 as well. For a mid level ESP LTD model, this blows away a lot of Fenders and lower priced Gibsons.

Overall Impression — 10
First of all, let me say that I've been playing for 40 years and at 53 years of age, I've played and owned Fenders, Epiphones, Ibanez, and Gibsons. To be honest, I can't believe that this is made in China. The quality of this, is just that damm good. Secondly, this is one of the top 5 guitars that I have have the privilege of owning in my life. I am in love with this axe, and it has earned a pernament place in my collection. I see where these are going for $260.00 brand new. IMO, these are a great investment for either a beginner or a gigging guitarist. ESP has some great product in their LTD line for very reasonable prices.

Reliability & Durability — 10
I've already have played this at a couple of gigs without a backup and it has held up without any problems at all. The finish on this is lovely and adds class to it. I'm very sure with proper care, it'll last. The strap buttons seem to hold up very well, along with the hardware. All in all, this seems to be one solidly, well built instrument. I'm very happy with this guitar, can't you tell? LOL!

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
Mine is a used model and there was some slight fret buzz, so the only thing I really had to do, was a slight truss rod adjustment. The intonation was spot on. I did adjust the pickup height to my own personal settings of course, and other than that, everything else was just fine. I use D'Addario 10's and they sound great with this and stay in tune forever. It is a little neck heavy though, due to the SG design, but that's not a big deal. This guitar does have some nice weight to it for a SG design which adds to the sustain and tone of it IMO. The neck, even though it's rather thick, is very fast and comfortable to play no doubt to the jumbo frets. I could play this one all day.

Features — 10
This is my 2nd review as seeing that I didn't really give enough info with the 1st one. Looking at the serial number on the back of the headstock and also calling ESP to confirm it, Mine was made in 2010 in China and has a Basswood and not Agathis as I previously stated, body. The neck is Maple with a Rosewood Fretboard with 24 Jumbo Frets and stock ESP Tuners with the LTD Logo on the headstock. The electronics are ESP LH-150 Humbuckers in both the neck, and bridge positions, while the pickup switch is your standard 3 way. The bridge is a tune-o-matic with a tail piece at the end. It has a lovely Transparent Black finish which I think looks really cool and adds a lot of class to this guitar.

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