Esp USA or Ibanez J-Custom

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by a curry, Jun 2, 2019.

  1. a curry

    a curry SS.org Regular

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    As the title States I'm looking into getting either a USA esp m-7 fr or a j custom 7. Looking for some input on quality and playability for both.
     
  2. Noisy Humbucker

    Noisy Humbucker Only obsesses over guitars when not playing them.

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    At that tier, it’s all about preference. You’ll be getting an excellent instrument either way, so the question is are you ESP guy or an Ibanez guy?
     
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  3. AkiraSpectrum

    AkiraSpectrum SS.org Regular

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    Yeah, I'm going to agree with this.

    I've played a 6-string ESP USA and 6-string Ibanez J-Custom--each, briefly. Generally speaking you're getting similar quality on each.

    It's really down what you like in terms of shape, aesthetic, features, neck-shape, etc.

    I really liked the J-Custom I played but in terms of overall looks, neck-shape, and features, I would get an ESP USA--especially since you have a lot more options in terms of colors/finishes and pickups with ESP USA.
     
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  4. jephjacques

    jephjacques BUTTS LOL

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  5. _MonSTeR_

    _MonSTeR_ SS.org Regular

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    You can probably find flaws in either if you are determined and look hard enough.

    Try to play at least one of each so you can at least get a feel for overall neck and body shapes, then pick the one you like the most.

    If you can’t play them, just pick the one that you like the look of best...
     
  6. Lorcan Ward

    Lorcan Ward 7slinger

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    J-customs are awesome guitars but not worth the insane prices they are charging for them new nowadays. If you like Ibbys and want something more refined than a Prestige then they are the next step. Great fretwork, super smooth neck finish, action as low as you could want, mahogany bodies(although that's not as big a deal anymore). You should be able to find a second hand one easily enough.
     
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  7. gunch

    gunch chungus

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    Do ESP USAs have the nutso fretwork that the ESP CS have?
     
  8. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    Yes.

    You're really not going to find better.

    Honestly, I say go ESP USA. You'll be able to customize the guitar and the quality is beyond reproach.

    I like Ibanez. A lot. But I just don't think the current batch of JCRG7s are anything special. Great quality, but just not all too inspiring. To me at least.

    Though, have you considered a Suhr M7? I love mine.

    That said, I'm GASing for an ESP USA M7FR too. :lol:
     
  9. jephjacques

    jephjacques BUTTS LOL

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    Yeah I think ESP USA is definitely in Suhr territory, and a lot more affordable unless you can find a Suhr you like on the used market. The fretwork on mine is just ridiculously good.
     
  10. a curry

    a curry SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the input guys, I think I'm going to go in the direction of esp, now I just gotta move some equipment.
     
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  11. yan12

    yan12 SS.org Regular

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    Another one to look at in that price range is the USA Schecter sunset 24-7.
    Having owned the top tier of both Ibanez and ESP, I now lean ESP due to neck profiles but the quality of the two is fairly equal.
    So between them I vote ESP...and my avatar has a Jem 7v7 and 2013 UV777bk, two more awesome guitars from Ibanez.
    I just am getting older with more hand issues and don't like super thin necks anymore.

    That said, I have moved into USA Schecter without regret. First of all, ESP and Schecter share some bloodlines with ownership and design. But the real separator for me is fretwork. The Schecter USA line (and masterworks) has the best fretwork I have seen or used with ESP Original very close. I think both are above Suhr in that regard, but all very well built. I know this is highly personal and subjective, but all I can say is I have actually owned and played these exact guitars. I have had Suhr and Anderson, Jackson custom shop...all are phenomenal guitars and you really can't go wrong. But Schecter USA fretwork easily surpasses 75% of these guitars and has few equals. Shigeki Aoshima is the fret specialist there and if you ask around top builder circles, he carries a lot of weight.

    You can easily build as Sunset 24-7 for the price of J custom or ESP USA...$3k or less. Hardtail or Floyd, and different headstock configurations as well. If you need more questions answered, call Jason at DCGL...
     
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  12. Zado

    Zado SS.org Regular

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    ^AND their on pickups are quite something
     
  13. zimbloth

    zimbloth Nick // Axe Palace Vendor Forum MVP

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    As someone who sells both extensively for a living, I'd give the nod to ESP. They're more consistently great and have far more options. I love J-Customs as well, but the ESPs are just on another level unless you're talking about the Sugi-built J-Customs which I know you aren't (those are like $7000).
     
  14. c7spheres

    c7spheres GuitArtist

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    J-Customs are nice but way over priced, imo. Esp's are nice too and also priced a bit high, imo, but not as much as Ibby. The major difference is that most the ESP are not bolt on and Ibbys are Bolt on. I would personally shop the used market and modify whatever I needed to and save a bunch of money.
     
  15. a curry

    a curry SS.org Regular

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    What about those new schecters you just got in? How would they compare?
     
  16. Zado

    Zado SS.org Regular

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    I Remember them having anche astounding koa PT.
     
  17. setsuna7

    setsuna7 Poor Gearwhore

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    wth is a nutso?
     
  18. MerlinTKD

    MerlinTKD EIght.Fold.Path / Hinge Theory Contributor

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    $20, same as in town.


    (Sorry, sorry, sorry, couldn't help myself, I'll show myself out...)
     
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  19. zimbloth

    zimbloth Nick // Axe Palace Vendor Forum MVP

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    Seeing as its 2019 and high-end guitars cost what they cost, I don't think either are "overpriced". In fact, the prices have come way down for J-Customs. They used to be around $4000-4500 as recent as about 4-5 years ago. The current models are $2999 and often can be had for less of course with discounts, etc.

    That said, yes the ESPs are more bang for the back, but dude they have bolt-on models too. In fact, the ESP USA M-7 model is a bolt-on. Bolt-ons aren't worse than neck-thrus, just different. All are equally viable construction methods and can produce equally good sustain and tone in the hands of the right luthier (which ESP most definitely have).

    Those are pretty incredible as well. ESP custom shop quality for sure, but with killer specs and a reasonable price for what you get.
     
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  20. c7spheres

    c7spheres GuitArtist

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    Yep, I actually prefer bolt-on necks myself. I didn't know ESP had those. They look nice. I guess what I mean by overpriced what I'm saying is that for half the price or less you can get an instrument that is just as comfortable and playable/stable but without all the extra cost. I've had a few J-customs in the past (rg8527, 8427 and more) and I actually preferred my Prestige rg2027x I used to have and my rg7620 more. I find that no matter if the guitar is cheap or expensive doesn't really factor in to how much I like it. I learned the hard way by having custom guitars made that each cost over $4k and though they were phenomenal guitars, I actually ended up liking and playing my old rg7620 more and liked the tone better too. It was hard to admit for awhile and the resale loss was eye opening too. I won't keep guitars around that I don't play regularly. I like some of those Axe Palace runs I'm seeing for less than a J-Custom too. I also like the older Agile Interceptor Pros compared to ESP's especially for $3000 less. I mean, I'd rather have an arsenal of fully modified Agile's and save money than 1 guitar. That being said, if I played the guitar and fell in love with it I would certainly pay $3-4k for it, but I'd have to play it first or have a no questions money back return option.
     
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