M-I review by ESP

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.4 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.2 (16 votes)

Price paid: $ 750

Purchased from: MusiciansFriend

Sound — 8
This guitars sounds great with metal, rock, hard blues. I play it through a Fender Super Champ with an assortment of pedals (many BYOC). Its pretty bright on the highs, and quiet when not played. I have since installed an EMG 89X for a little more versatility. Drilled an extra hole and put a tone knob in. It still rocks.

Overall Impression — 9
I play a wide variety of music and it can hang with many of them. It is significantly less versatile with the stock EMG 81, but the 89X opens up the options more. I have been playing for a number of years but really only started taking it seriously a year or so ago. I have a Godin Summit CT, MM Sub 1, and PRS SE 22 fret custom. From a tactile standpoint this one is probably my favorite. I love the neck and playability the most. Soundwise it holds it own or beats the others. The only thing I hate is the tuners. They stay in tune and do the job but they're a pain in the ass to string up.

Reliability & Durability — 8
I have brought this to lessons, played out with friends, and did one short gig, but I don't really play live yet. I'm sure it would handle it, it seems very solid. I try to take care of them but I do not baby my guitars. I breaks lot of stuff and it has survived thus far...

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The action was ok. I had it lowered a bit and am using 9-46 set on it now I think. It is a joy to play. I love the ebony fretboard and it just has a very "precise" feel to it none of my other guitars have. The finish on the fretboard has a somewhat milky color to it. Maybe this was why it was a scratch n dent. I never did find anything wrong it except for a few light scratches on the back, which I may have done myself while trying it out. I had it checked out and set up at the guitar shop and they didn't see anything wrong.

Features — 8
I bought this a year or so back as a new scratch-n-dent during one of the sales from MF. Not sure what year it was made. Alder Body and 24 jumbo frets on an ebony fretboard/Maple Neck. One EMG 81 and one volume knob. Magnum locking tuners. Very nicely carved heel for easy access up high. Bone nut and a Tune-O-Matic (no dive bombs here). For the (list) price there may not be a lot features here, but they haven't skimped on the ones that are here and this is a very well built guitar.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I'd rather get a PRS Singlecut SE Trem or a Tremonti SE with that price. Single pickup and no tone knob just doesn't cut it for me. Good Review though..
    Almost pulled the trigger on this, but just didn't think I could live without the neck pickup. Awesome playability though. Will probably pick up an M-II eventually.