Published 1 year ago on January 9, 2020

By Guitar Interactive Magazine


ESP LTD MH-1000HS - Violet Shadow Fade


MSRP (UK) £1149 (US) $1498


Awesome Looks

Smooth as butter

Great Tones


Floyd may be an issue for some


Body: Mahogany

Top: Quilted maple

Neck-thru-body: Maple

Makassar ebony fretboard

Guitars in ESP's LTD 1000 Series are designed to offer the tone, feel, looks and quality that working professional musicians require in an instrument. The MH-1001HS is a new humbucker/single-coil configuration for the MH Series, which combines design elements of our M and H Series guitars. Available in Violet Shadow Fade and Black Cherry Fade finish, Sam Bell takes the former for a test run.

ESP & LTD are both well known for making some exceptional production model guitars, with high-quality features, unique looks, excellent playability and versatility for most contemporary styles. On my recent visit to Guitar Interactive I had the pleasure of reviewing this awesome MH1000 series in Violet Shadow Fade.

Perhaps the first thing that stands out about this guitar is its look. The shades of blue over the flame maple top really make this guitar look incredibly appealing. Around the back of the Guitar we can see the Mahogany body showing through the lacquer. The Body and Neck-through construction is slick, giving the player excellent access to the 24 frets. The lacquered Thin ‘U’ shape neck is of course Mahogany with a smooth Macassar Ebony Fretboard and Jumbo Frets. Fretting hand work feels effortless and smooth. Notes sustain and bloom outwards in their articulation, the guitar resonates well when playing dynamically. Grover tuners keep tuning stable and a Floyd Rose system with locking nut is installed. This can be controversial having a Floyd Rose, it would be great to see this Guitar with a Modern Vintage Trem system and locking tuners. However, the Floyd Rose that this Guitar comes with is high quality, and if you are familiar with setting them up, it should be a breeze!

The Guitar comes equipped with two Seymour Duncan Pickups, a Hot Rails in the Neck Position (Single Coil Size Humbucker) and a Pegasus Humbucker in the Bridge. These are both fairly high output and are controlled by a 3 way pickup switch and coil tap function which can be activated by pulling up the Tone Knob. I was very impressed with the coil tap on this guitar, due to the solid build of the instrument, the split sounds sounded convincing and musical with and without any drive from an amp or pedal. I could play funky rhythms and crunchy leads with single coil flare and I didn’t feel like I was missing anything. When the pickups are used as Humbuckers, the Hot Rails in the neck responds with a warm and fat tone. And in the Bridge Position, the Pegasus has a tight bottom end response which is ideal for Modern Rock and Metal styles.

I was incredibly impressed by this Guitar, it’s a very versatile instrument, looks stunning and is very well put together. It even comes with an ESP Hardcase with tools and cloths to help maintain the beast! The price point is above average, however you do get a lot with this guitar. If you’re looking for a modern contemporary guitar for versatile situations and you’re happy with using a Floyd Rose, this is definitely worth a look!


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