Perfect sound of ESP LTD Andy James review: amazing sustain, bright tone

Andy James is a swiftly rising star of world guitar music. In addition to creativity, Andy teaches and inspires guitarists all around the world. AJ’s signature guitars, created by ESP LTD, have already become his “business card”. They are designed under Andy’s strict guidance, resulting in a comfortable and perfectly sounding instrument.

#ModelRatingBody materialNeck materialOur topCheck
1Andy James Singnature AJ-1 MahoganyMaple1 Check

2ESP Artist Series LGH200 BasswoodMaple4 Check

3ESP LTD EC-401 MahoganyMahogany2 Check

4ESP Artist Series LAJ7BLKS Solid WoodMaple3
Andy James Singnature AJ-1
Body materialMahogany
Neck materialMaple
Our top1
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ESP Artist Series LGH200
Body material Basswood
Neck materialMaple
Our top4
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Body materialMahogany
Neck materialMahogany
Our top2
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ESP Artist Series LAJ7BLKS
Body materialSolid Wood
Neck materialMaple
Our top3

Guitar ESP LTD Andy James. AJ-1’s review

This 25.5-inch scaled instrument is made quite thoroughly, and the guitar itself is pretty beautiful. It was created exactly for the metal music; the fast solo performances are the best what can be obtained from AJ-1. Excellent long sustain , active sound, due to the bridge system TonePros and the locks, the guitar stays tuned for a long time.

  • Design: Mahogany body;
  • Neck maple with Thin U-profile;
  • Fingerboard: rosewood;
  • Markers: displaced blocks, inlay Andy James on the 12th fret;

The AJ-1 guitar has a Mahogany body and has a specific maple neck. Mahogany is deservedly considered one of the best materials for guitars. Its timbre is characterized by deep downs and smoothed tops. You receive a buzzing velvet sound.

  • Radius of overlap: 350 mm;
  • 25.5″ neck of double octave;
  • 24 XJ frets;
  • Bottom width: 42 mm;
  • Bridge: TonePros Tune-O-Matic;
  • Pegs: Locking Tuners;
  • Pickups: EMG 66 (neck), EMG 57 (bridge);
  • Adjustable knobs: volume, 3-position switch;
  • Strings: 10-46.

The neck-through body construction includes maple slab with the neck, which are sandwiched between two parts of Mahogany. Creating well established guitars is a design principle and really superb sustain  is achieved due to pass-through neck.

The headstock with locking tuners is brilliant. Andy’s signature across the center looks very cool indeed.


Both replaceable pickups look very cool with their perfect steel finish. The toggle switch of three way pickup selector and single master volume control are simple LTD’s electronics solutions.

Saturated cool black satin finish will definitely conquer your heart as well as the sound, which will not disappoint you! One can consider the guitar to be a resonant instrument. It gives a really bright tone due to the maple construction! It is really great because the guitars with Mahogany body give the dark tone during playing.

ESP LTD Andy James sounds fantastic being plugged-in; the pickups “work” properly. Playability is superb.

EMG sensors

These options of AJ-1 do not flash and have a high output and a distinctive recognizable timbre. New ESP picks keep the tuned string more stable, you can replace strings easier.

Bridge System TonePros

It is rather an innovative enhancement of the Tune-O-Matic. The bridge and the string holder are completely fixed by means of two small screws at the edges. Rigid fixation provides increasing sustain , the instrument sound becomes more complete, and the change of strings is more convenient.


The guitar is equipped with EMG 57/66, which in comparison with 81/60 gives incredibly clear, clean and warm sound, but it can give you needed stroke you expect. So, it can be used as a “universal soldier” perfectly suitable metal, rock, genuine guitar.

According to many reviews, the location of the volume control and toggle switch for this guitar are ideal, all styles sound great.

  • In terms of playback, this guitar is like a wonderful dream. There is no stop-bar, and due to this the guitar has a tremendous sustain.
  • Excellent guitar, 24-fret, and design/engineering are clear and simple.
  • Good for playing at concerts; this guitar is best for rock heavy metal. It sounds great both on a mini amplifier during rehearsals and on a relatively large amplifier during concerts.
  • Switching from EMG 57 (B) to 66 (N) has also got an audible difference. The creamy, sublime 66ger sound is completely convincing.
  • You can cover the fingerboard with a thin layer of lemon oil.
  • When you play in a standing position, it gives soft and pleasant impression. You always have a good view of frets.
Remember:Playing at lower frets requires several days of training, since they are XJ frets. It is also necessary to emphasize that the instrument is intended for a more “hard” movement. The period of use depends on your treatment. Take the proper care and the guitar will gladly serve you!
Suitable for playing at concerts
Rich, bright sound
Beautiful finish
Playing at lower frets requires several days of training

What alternatives can the market offer?

A new subscription model of electric guitar – AJ-1 was created specifically for Andy James, taking into account all his wishes. Ergonomic body, active electronics EMG and convenient “high-speed” profile of the neck make this guitar an excellent shred machine.

ESP Artist Series LGH200

This made in black solid body electric guitar will allow you to feel the Gary’s style to let yourself to enjoy the vibration and powerful sound.

You can consider the LTD Gary Holt Signature GH200 Black as an analog.

  • It is completed with Basswood body, maple u-shaped thin neck, the construction bolt-on neck is, 24.75″ scale and a rosewood fingerboard.
  • This guitar is also featuring ESP-designed 22 extra jumbo frets and pickups.
Tip:Gary Holt is known as the “Godfather of thrash metal”. You can find the guitar equipped with a Floyd Rose Special Bridge and a locking nut. The controls are managed with a toggle switch. Price range starts from 488$.
Powerful sound. and vibration
22 extra jumbo frets and pickups
Stylish design
Additional configuration may be required


The price for this electric guitar is about 699 $. It has a Mahogany body and rosewood fingerboard. It comes equipped with a tom bridge & tailpiece. It has a set-neck construction and a 24.75″ scale with 24 extra jumbo frets and a thin-u neck contour.

It features versatile, powerful colors, reliable equipment and a neat, attractive appearance. Easy play, excellent resonance and sustain .

  • The pickups are active EMG 81(b) and EMG 60(n).
  • The guitar completed with Grover Tuners and a 3-way toggle switch control system.
Easy play
Excellent resonance and sustain .
Reliable equipment
No cons, only positive feedback

ESP Artist Series LAJ7BLKS

This 7-string guitar comes for price of about 880 $, but you can find cheaper one. It is a solid body musical instrument performed in black satin for a perfect look.

  •   Solid Wood body with a maple neck (thin-u neck contour)
  • Neck-thru construction
  • A toggle switch control
  • Rosewood fingerboard
  • 24 extra jumbo frets
  • Tonepros Tom bridge w/string thru body
  • 25.5″ scale
  • Emg metalworks 57-7h(b) and 66-7h(n) are the pickups
Good sound quality
24 extra jumbo frets
No data on the cons

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (90 votes, average: 4.03 out of 5)

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1 Response

  1. Lisbeth
    I want to say that this is a great guitar from a great manufacturer that made a positive first impression on me. I liked the design of this guitar and how it feels in my hands. The sound is excellent and in General everything is at the highest level.

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