LTD

The LTD 1000 series are designed to offer the sound, feel, look and quality that professional musicians need from an instrument. With the LTD Deluxe Phoeni..
The LTD brand has helped bring the quality and prestige of ESP to a more affordable price range in order to provide all musicians with quality instruments. ..
With the M-200, guitar players who are ready to shred have a truly affordable, high-quality guitar. The classic flat “slab” body of the M Series is ..
With the M-200, guitar players who are ready to shred have a truly affordable, high-quality guitar. The classic flat “slab” body of the M Series is ..
The LTD LK-600 is the Signature Series guitar of Luke Kilpatrick, guitarist for Australian metalcore sensations Parkway Drive. Based on the ESP Horizon shape, t..
The LTD H3-1000FR impresses not only with its sophisticated design, inspired by the ESP Horizon-3, but also with its affordable price, which most musicians can ..
Introduced in 1996, LTD brand helped to convey the quality and prestige of the ESP at a more affordable price range in order to ensure that all the musicians wi..
Introduced in 1996, LTD brand helped to convey the quality and prestige of the ESP at a more affordable price range in order to ensure that all the musicians wi..
LTD guitars are designed to offer the tone, feel, look and quality that professional musicians demand, as well as a price that casual musicians can afford. The ..
BS-7 is an extended range beast equipped with DiMarzio pickups, 24 frets and Floyd rose bridge, all packed with a double cutaway alder body. On top, there is a&..
The Arrow-1000 takes the completely unique, bold design of the Arrow shape and offers it with the excellent build quality and high-end components expected from ..
The KH-202 Kirk Hammett Signature electric guitar is the perfect choice for true music fans who want to experience the legendary Metallica sound. For thirty yea..
LTD D-Series basses have long been the favorites of serious musicians who know they don't need too much money to get a high-quality, thru-neck instrument. ..
ESP is well aware that the bass guitar is probably one of the most important instruments in modern music, and creating a truly quality bass guitar requires ..
New
The EC-256 is an electric guitar with an outstanding singletop design and unique character. It is a member of the LTD 200 series, which is renowned for its exce..
LTD built the LTD ZH-7 STBLKS (See Thru Black Satin) after receiving the rather impressive wish list of Whitechapel guitarist Zach Householder. This 7-string &l..
As the guitarist for American metal masters Lamb of God, Will Adler required a guitar that could handle his powerful yet nuanced playing style. The LTD WA-Warbi..
The wide range of LTD models is tailored to cover all categories of people, from beginner players to professional musicians. LTD 1000 Series guitars are de..
LTD’s Viper Series offers the cool double-cutaway look that’s perfect for metal, hard rock, blues, and so much more. With the Viper-256, you get the..
A classic shape gets updated with tons contemporary vibe and modern performance feel! The LTD TE-401 is a mahogany body shred machine that’s gre..
Back when ESP was founded in 1975, its original claim to fame was taking existing guitars and making them better, with modified necks and components that increa..
The LTD SC-20 celebrates 20 years since influential and groundbreaking guitarist Stephen Carpenter (Deftones) received his first ESP Signature Series guitar.&nb..
Mark Heylmun's signature instrument, the LTD MKH-7 is available in matte black and will help you push the boundaries of heavy metal sound. Mahogany is deser..
The Black Metal LTD series are guitars that are comparable in build quality to our LTD Deluxe 1000 Series instruments. But with a dark and menacing desig..
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LTD

ESP Company, Limited is a Japanese guitar manufacturer, primarily focused on the production of electric guitars and basses. They are based in both Japan and Los Angeles, California, USA, with two distinct product lines for each respective market. ESP Company manufactures instruments under several names, including "ESP Standard", "ESP Custom Shop", "LTD Guitars and Basses", "Navigator", "Edwards Guitar and Basses" and "Grassroots". Their products range from Japanese-built custom shop instruments to lower end mass-production Korean, Indonesian and Chinese made instruments. In 1975, Hisatake Shibuya opened a shop called Electric Sound Products (ESP) in Tokyo, which provided custom replacement parts for guitars and quickly gained a reputation for the high-quality of these replacement parts. At this time, ESP also began crafting guitars under the ESP and Navigator brand in the Japanese market. Ronnie Wood of The Rolling Stones and Akira Takasaki were users of these guitars. ESP replacement parts were first introduced into the US in 1983 and began crafting custom instruments for local New York artists between 1984 and '85. Among these artists were Page Hamilton (Helmet), Vernon Reid (Living Colour), Vinnie Vincent and Bruce Kulick (KISS), and Ronnie Wood (The Rolling Stones). At this time, ESP also introduced the 400 Series as the first production line to be distributed in the US.

During this same period, ESP began making the bodies and necks for Kramer Guitars and other manufacturers were using ESP as an OEM such as Robin Guitars, Schecter Guitar Research and DiMarzio. Many traits of the Kramer line are still visible including neck construction and body bevels. ESP tooled up for Tom Anderson's shaved bolt on neck heel on the Schecter bodies and this has since become a feature of their house brand.

In 1985, George Lynch discovered ESP while on tour in Tokyo. Lynch walked into an ESP shop looking for a replacement neck and learned that ESP also built custom guitars. As a result, his famous ESP Kamikaze was made and ESP released George Lynch's Kamikaze as its first signature model. ESP soon introduced the M1 Standard, MI Custom, Horizon Custom, and the Surveyor bass into the market. At this time, ESP based its headquarters in a loft in downtown New York City on 19th Street. In 1989, the headquarters were moved to 48th Street near other famous music stores. Between 1990 and 1992, ESP expanded its Signature Series as well as its standard product line. The US replacement parts business was discontinued in order to focus solely on their guitar and bass line, as well as the Custom Shop series. There are about 41 signature series guitars.

In 1993, ESP moved its headquarters again but this time to Los Angeles, on Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood. In 1995, the LTD series was created to produce ESP's high-quality products at a more affordable price. Soon after the introduction of the Korean and Indonesian-made LTD lines, ESP stopped selling the majority of its Japanese made flagship guitars in the United States, due to the high prices involved in exporting to the Americas. The lone exception was ESP's artist signature series, which remained ESP (rather than LTD) models. In the early 2000s, ESP resumed shipping the standard Japanese made lines to the United States (where they are very popular among heavy metal and hard rock players), though at greatly increased prices compared to the early 90s.

Similarly to Ibanez, ESP's chief competitor in Japan, ESP was initially known for making high quality and customized replicas of famous American guitars, including hot rodded Strats and Teles, as well as Gibson Explorers. The Explorer model, (known as the EXP/MX), shot to fame when avid ESP user James Hetfield's band Metallica rose to popularity in the late 80s/early 90s. Models similar to Hetfield's black ESP even today sell for hundreds of dollars beyond the original retail price. However, just like with Ibanez, when the Gibson company realized the extent to which ESP was denting into sales of its own guitars, it filed a suit to prevent sales of these guitars in the Americas. ESP redesigned its lines to be less similar to the American models.

In 2002, ESP was ranked among the music industry's fastest growing companies. This is largely due to the Fender buyout of Jackson Guitars, who ESP had struggled to compete with throughout the 1980s and 1990s. After the buyout, many Jackson endorsers switched over to ESP (this has ignited a feud between players, with Jackson players pointing out that ESP became known for copying popular instruments, including Jackson's Soloist and Gibson's Explorer models famously used by Jeff Hanneman, James Hetfield respectively, while ESP players cite the Fender buyout as casting a shadow on Jackson's metal image and hail ESP as the new king). [citation needed] Some of these artists who left Jackson for ESP included Dave Mustaine (Megadeth, now using Dean Guitars, who at one point had expressed interest in buying out Jackson himself), as well as Adam Darski (Behemoth), Alexi Laiho and Roope Latvala (Children of Bodom), Jeff Hanneman (Slayer), Galder and Silenoz (Dimmu Borgir).

ESP introduced its Xtone line, beginning with the semi-hollow Paramount Series. In 2005, ESP celebrated its 30th Anniversary and released James Hetfield's "Truckster" into its Signature Series. In 2006, ESP showcased 22 of its newest Signature Series and Standard Series models at Winter NAMM 2006. The Standard Series included such famous models as the ESP LTD EC-500 and the ESP LTD B-500. Among the signature artists showcasing their newest ESP models and signing autographs at the ESP booth were Dave Mustaine, George Lynch, Stephen Carpenter (Deftones), Michael Wilton and Page Hamilton.

As of March 2015, ESP began distributing Takamine Guitars in the United States. ESP found fame by making and endorsing guitars for guitarists who went on to become leading exponents of thrash metal in the 1980s, along with other guitar manufacturers Jackson and Dean, with bands Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax and Megadeth. As a result of these endorsements, ESP has become one of the most popular suppliers of guitars for heavy metal. ESP instruments are endorsed by musicians numbering in the hundreds. A complete list of them can be found on the Artists section of ESP Guitars' website.

www.espguitars.com