LTD Viper-50 review by ESP

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 7
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.8 Good
  • Users' score: 7.5 (115 votes)
ESP: LTD Viper-50
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Price paid: $ 299

Sound — 8
It sounds great with high gain settings, just like any other ESP guitars. Perfect for metal, rock or maybe, even blues. This guitar is built primary for heavy metal musicians who are 'high gainers' and 'gain-depraved'. However, that does not mean it sounds terrible clean either. It sounds pretty decent on clean as well.

Overall Impression — 8
I play anything from thrash metal to blues. I think it does the job of any rock music perfectly. It makes a great choice if you are considering your first electric guitar or if you want to save yourself some money and get something affordable. If it was stolen, I would hunt down the thief and force he/her to get me another new one. Pros: low action, good stock pick-ups, sounds great with high gain, great shiny finish, visually-appealing, affordable price. Cons: heavy neck, hindrance to higher frets access.

Reliability & Durability — 7
This guitar seems rather sturdy and reliable. I have not played it live before (have been a bedroom musician so far) but I imagine it could 'survive' a live performance. One thing you should know before you purchase this guitar is: it is a heavy guitar. When you wear it on a strap, the neck simply tilts downwards due to its heavy head, which might be a little uncomfortable to play with.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
The finish and construction is close to perfect. Couldn't find any flaw with it. I think the glossy finish looks especially good on this guitar shape with the nice curves. The action is low enough to please shred fans, while at the same time, not too low to cause fret buzz. Perfectly nothing wrong with the pickups, switches and knobs. I have no problems with the tuners, despite some guitarist claiming the guitar can't stay in tune. Even in this case, it is nothing a screwdriver can't resolve. Another thing is, high fret access might be rather difficult because of the bolt-on joint. That is not a major concern for me since I hardly uses high frets.

Features — 8
Made in Indonesia. It has the shape of a skewed-version of the Gibson SG, possibly to avoid a lawsuit. The shape feels pretty comfortable to play with and rest on your lap. The rest of the specifications can be found on the ESP website, so I guess I won't bother to list them here.

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