NGD - ESP E-II Horizon SGZ Custom....Broken heart fixed!!

Discussion in 'Standard Guitars' started by Trashgreen, Oct 11, 2020.

  1. Trashgreen

    Trashgreen SS.org Regular

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    Is it possible to order the same guitar model again, even though it was returned the first time because of features you didn't like? Yes absolutely:


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    So in 2018 I ended up returning the E-II Horizon Sugizo model cause the vintage frets completely surprised me. I wasn't sure if I would be able to fully enjoy the guitar having the challence of playing the lower frets. Since my economy back then was weak and there where other things I needed more, I made a quick decision and took advantage of getting the full refund while still possible.

    Problem is that I totally felt in love with this model even before receiving it and when I finally got it I really liked the sound, the feel of the finish and the overall look. So returning it left me devastated, it was just one big anti climax back then.

    Now I'm correcting the problem and getting this model back in the collection.


    Cons:

    Vinatge frets = your fingers getting lower to the fretboard

    Middle pickup position



    Pros:

    Vintage frets = faster responce

    Middle pickup can be lowered enough not to be a problem at all

    Sounds awesome, I really like the Duncan distortion pickup

    Fantastic sustain

    Thin-U neck profile and smooth finish feels great to play

    Amazing quilted top, some of the small patterns somehow reminds me of Dan Seagrave artwork

    Nice 3D Quilt effect

    Overall stunning looking finish

    Broken heart now fixed!


    The vinatge frets didn't seem to bother me this time but I will have to cut nails more offen in order to play things like 6 sting cords properly.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2020
  2. Trashgreen

    Trashgreen SS.org Regular

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  3. Zhysick

    Zhysick SS.org Regular

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    I may be wrong but I think you like ESP guitars, don't know why but that's what my guts are telling me...

    Nice guitar! And good to hear you fixed your heart too
     
  4. Millul

    Millul SS.org Regular

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    I need to bring an ESP back into my life...!
     
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  5. decoy205

    decoy205 SS.org Regular

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    Congrats man! I def have the bug for an ESP custom. Yours looks amazing.
     
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  6. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    I'm about to pull the trigger on one of these, my only concerns are cleans on the Little 59...I really like my metal guitars to have usable cleans these days, in at least one position. (I'm also interested in the new Horizon-III, which has coil-splitting, which I love on my E-II Horizon.) Do you think that the Little 59, in its middle position, gives you cleans you can use (maybe even for jazz)? I'm not really worried about hitting it when I strum...
     
  7. budda

    budda Do not criticize as this Contributor

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    Why wouldnt the clean sound be useable? :scratch:

    So long as your amp has a clean tone you like, you're all set.
     
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  8. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    Sorry, I need to give more details. "Usable" is subjective. Humbucker cleans aren't the same as single-coil cleans, and I can use humbucker cleans, but I prefer single-coil cleans. They seem to give more articulation or definition to tone (I usually play rhythm with them), more useful high-end. It seems like manufacturers have figured that out, and made cleans a differentiator for high-gain guitars. A few of my recent guitars have a single coil that gets mixed in with humbuckers, to give clean options that has more definition, but with some of the hum canceled. Some of them also have coil-splitting, which, when done well, gives great single-coil(ish) cleans with little or no hum.

    I recently got an ESP E-II Horizon, and the coil-splitting on the guitar is excellent. (I should say, though, that the humbucker tones on the Horizon are better - more articulate, less mushy - than most humbucker cleans I've played.) I think that the Little 59 is intended to be a "PAF in a single-coil shape", so I guess it isn't supposed to sound single-coil-like, but I'm wondering if its sound is more articulate or defined than your typical big old humbucker.

    Now I'm wondering if I should be concerned about strumming...
     
  9. budda

    budda Do not criticize as this Contributor

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    Straight swap the lil 59 for a single coil then?
     
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  10. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    Definitely an option. I'd be so happy if the Little 59 pulled off cleans I like...because (in addition to spending more money) I would have to go down an internets rabbit hole of single-coil obsession to pick the right one. It would take weeks, if not months, and I would get a headache. It's been so long since I did single coils...I love it when manufacturers make the decision for me. I like the single coils on the Charvel DKs I have, I like the way the Charvels mix them into the pickup options on HSS and HSH guitars. I love the split coils on the Horizon.

    But putting a single coil in there is definitely an option.
     
  11. budda

    budda Do not criticize as this Contributor

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    If you dont want to decide anything, just leave it stock.
     
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  12. Sermo Lupi

    Sermo Lupi SS.org Regular

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    Eh? :scratch:

    On a different note, I've never really understood ESP's obsession with middle pickups in lieu of neck pickups. Guitar does look gorgeous, though!
     
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  13. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    Based on my research, the internet is unable to determine why Sugizo (or someone else) chose to put a lil 59 there. I'd love to hear from anyone who's played through it.

    The vintage fret thing isn't a big concern of mine, but it sounds like the different feel is noticeable. Faster response...I haven't heard that as a sale point for low frets before.
     
  14. Zhysick

    Zhysick SS.org Regular

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    If you want a snappier and clearer sound from that lil'59 then just wire it in parallel. It will still be hum-cancelling but it will sound like a nice convincing single coil. Trust me, probably the best pickup in parallel for single coil tones. And it will be free of you do it yourself
     
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  15. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    I'm definitely considering something along those lines - putting a 5-way switch in, and splitting the 59 and/or what you suggest. Cheaper than a new single-coil.

    edit: I feel like I should acknowledge that there's always the possibility that the 59 has a really excellent humbucker-ish tone, partly as a result of its unconventional positioning.
     
  16. Trashgreen

    Trashgreen SS.org Regular

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    Just took the words from the ESP catalog, although I did remember it wrong it does say quick not fast...

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  17. Trashgreen

    Trashgreen SS.org Regular

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    At the moment I have the middle pickup lowered as much as possible and I don't hit the pickup when playing so no problem there.

    I haven't played enough with clean tones to tell you the exact feel but I have the 59 pickup in both the Formula and white MII and it works absolutely fine with clean sounds. Installing coil split could be a solution for you. I have coil split in both the Formula and MII and the 59 sounds great in split mode too. It would have been nice if this option came pre-installed in the Sugizo but it can be fixed for sure! At the moment I'm all in for the Duncan distortion pickup..
     
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  18. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    Duncan Distortion in bridge position of a Horizon body is a big part of why I want this guitar.
     
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  19. Ted Pikul

    Ted Pikul SS.org Regular

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    btw thank you for letting me use this thread like this! It's incredibly helpful for me. I really want to get another E-II Horizon FR with passive pickups. I want the new Horizon-III FR too, but that's gonna be a wait. I'm also considering the current Horizon-III FR, instead of the E-II Sugizo CTM, but the Sugizo is what I've had my heart set on. I already know I'll get the sounds I want with gain. If the guitar gives me cleans I like, we're good. If it gives me cleans I love, I'll never shut up about it.
     
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  20. Sermo Lupi

    Sermo Lupi SS.org Regular

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    Thanks for the source, but ESP is absolutely insane if they're trying to market vintage frets as having "quicker response". I guess if you play jumbo frets you're always playing behind the beat? Does ESP sell lag-compensating fret wraps, too?

    This has to be a mistranslation of some kind. Did they mean brighter or something, I wonder?
     
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