This ESP E-II ST-1 features:
- Quilt Maple Top with Tea Sunburst finish, 8.2 pounds
- Alder body
- Maple "Thin U" neck, satin finish
- Maple Fingerboard
- 1.650" nut and 12" radius, 25-1/2" scale
- 24 Nickel Silver XJ Frets
- (2) Seymour Duncan Classic Stack pickups
- (1) Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates humbucker
- 5-position pickup switch
- vol x tone controls
- Floyd Rose Original bridge
- Locking nut
- Gotoh Locking tuners
- Hardshell Deluxe Case
- Made in Tokyo, Japan
This E-II ST-1 is made in Tokyo, Japan where the ESP brand was born. The E-II line was created as a bridge between the Korean/Indonesian LTD series and the premium USA and ESP Original Japanese models. The Japanese penchant for quality control makes these the highest quality "production" ESP's, and coming from Tokyo gives each one a unique sense of family tradition. The ST-1 features an Alder body and beautiful Quilted Maple cap for a balanced tonal palette that emphasizes clarity and punchy single coil tone. The original Floyd Rose bridge complete with locking nut and tuners to make sure this guitar can truly do it all.
The pickups in the ST-1 are a great Seymour Duncan rock trio: Classic Stack single coils in the neck and middle positions with a Pearly Gates humbucker in the bridge. The Classic Stack's are Alnico V pickups with an emphasis on noiseless performance and clarity. These are stacked coil pickups, with a specially calibrated bottom coil for maximum noise cancelling. At 8.5k they are "hotter" on paper than they sound. We found them to be deliciously clean and mellow, and the noiseless feature means quiet operation at high gain levels (very handy to guitars of this ilk). Overall these pickups sound downright vintage: round and bouncy with a perfect amount of spank. In addition to being quiet as a mouse, the middle pickup is RWRP for heavenly in-between tones. Down in the bridge you have the nicely matched Pearly Gates humbucker. We knew we'd love the Gates because it's an Alnico II humbucker, which to us hits a sweet spot between harmonic content and power. Wound to a modest 8.1k you can let your amp do the hard work while you coax out the appropriate amount of firepower. The Gates will give you the low-midrange punch you crave while supporting expressive leads with superior body and soul.
The neck on the ST-1 is their popular "Thin U" profile. It's more generously proportioned that the typcial USA Fender, and provides good palm support while being thin enough to get a thumb around the neck when necessary. Like many ESP guitars is also has 24 highly polished jumbo frets and a 12" radius. True to its roots the ST-1 comes with the Floyd Rose original bridge complete with locking nut and great feeling Gotoh locking tuners. We're not dive bombers by trade, but it's a kick being able to ride the whammy bar with abandon without fear of tuning issues.
Getting to know the ESP brand has been a revelation. While most players know it by it's hard rock and predominantly heavy metal image, there are many facets to the ESP product lineup that address a wide range of player interests. With outstanding quality and a breadth of models, there is more to ESP than you think.