Best Guitars for Heavy Metal

What brand of of guitar and model is most efficient for metal... Also I know I haven't come anywhere near naming the realistic amount of brands so please add whatever you think is the best brand for metal... ps if anyone votes fender as a metal guitar, well that speaks for itself.

The Top TenXW


"my ESP kh-2 black ouija is the most bad ass guitar ever when ESP makes guitars, they do it right, the neck through, emg81/60, and ouija graphics not only make It look and sound awesome, but also gives you the feeling that you are holding a true instrument, and it feels dangerous, like you could fight off zombies with it. No wonder so many guitarists are turning to ESP

Absolute best Guitar Brand full stop. Not only are their metal guitars perfect, their other guitars are perfect as well. I own an ESP eclipse II and it is pro. My second guitar was an ESP LTD which I tour with along with the eclipse. Different guitar for different tuning. ESP is pro. Anyone who is looking for a recommendation, I recommend ESP. There is a reason why metalists use ESP.

ESP's are great. I have a lower end model (EC-50) and it plays as good as my nicer guitars and sounds very solid for the low price. I have also played a few of the pricier ESP's and they seem to have the same great neck and feel with a little tighter sound.

My ESP white OUIJA the best and perfect for METAL Sound!

V30 Comments

Quite honestly, I own dozens of guitars that I have collected through my 50 years, and have played in many bands, own a sound, and light business as well. I must start out by saying I hate fender products! That being said, ibinez guitars are stiff, and their necks can be sharp, even cut your fingers if you move too fast, they are a very technical sounding, and brash. Gibson has a great warm sound, but heavy as hell, with thick necks. I love jackson. Smooth to play, and pretty nice metal pickups, and feel good to hold, and play-ability is great. Prs feels like a dream in every way, plays like butter, but still have a thicker neck than I prefer. I am currently seeking a new esp, so don't have an opinion as of yet on them. Washburn has some great feeling guitars, but their pickups aren't very bright sounding, kinda muffled sounding.B.C. Rich has an awkward feel, but heavy sound. Kramer always struck me as a cheap brand. Some people prefer really cheap, old brand guitars, but those are people who play punk, or not metal of any kind in my opinion. I'm really looking forward to playing an esp, but remember this, you usually get what you pay for! Lots of people claim that you shouldn't have to pay more than a grand for a great guitar, but in my experience, if you want a dreamy, hard-core, guitar, that feels like home, like you hate to ever put it down, and even entices you to be more creative, save up, and pay the 2,500, to 5,000, to buy your dream guitar! Until then, work with what you got. It'll pay off, when you finally save up for that, you'll be more deserving of that precious gem you save for!

How is fender a metal guitar? Jackson USA select for the win! I know most metal bands out there uses ESPs but the USA made Jacksons have the best quality tone. The Jackson Soloist SL2H is the best super strat out there although I'm not such a fan of superstrats. If you're looking for an ultra high-end US made super strat or V shaped guitar (symmetrical or asymmetrical) jacksons are the best. The only reason they're so low on the list is that they're too expensive that not many people now about the brand

You can buy a Jackson for next to nothing, you don't need a USA select - although they are amazing if you have the cash! You can buy a Pro or X series for half the price of a USA model in loads of different shapes. Jackson were one of the first metal guitars you could buy and most other metal guitars are based on their designs, why buy a copy when you can have an original - that's why Fender and Gibson are so popular because they don't steal anyone elses ideas!

Jackson's are the best guitars for heavy metal. They have a nice aggressive tone, slim and comfortable necks and reliable builds.

V32 Comments

schecter is the 1st! especially schecter hellraiser c1 fr

I've played Dean, Jackson, Ibanez, Gibson, Fender, ESP, PRS, and Schecter guitars for most of my work. Out of all of those, I'd pick a Schecter any day. Doesn't matter what genre I'm playing, I will always pick a Schecter. Most people don't realize that they have a hidden ability to split the double coil pickups into single coils, so they say that Schecter is a metal guitar. In reality though, you can play almost anything with a Schecter. Also, the company takes very good care of their customers. I broke one of their necks without a warranty, and they let me ship it back for about twenty bucks and it came back as good as new. All in all, a Schecter is the best guitar company for almost anyone.

Two weeks ago I played the hellraiser extreme c-1 fr. This guitar is the most powerful guitar I've ever played... And the feeling is amazing. Better than some others that cost about 300 or 500 euro more

Schecter is by far the best for playing metal. No matter what you're into, classic heavy metal, to even modern metalcore and everything in between! Highly recommended for all metal heads! 10/10

V22 Comments

The Ibanez guitar company focuses primarily on metal music and they have the perfect designs for the metal genre, the RG 7 strings, Ibanez guitars have amazing playability and great sound and in my opinion Ibanez sounds the best. ESP guitars have great playability but I prefer the sound of Ibanez because they balance the high and low pitch perfectly. I think Jacksons sound terrible but they do have great playability and Schecter can suck it because the wish they could make good 7 strings like Ibanez does.
My top 10 is:
4.Jackson (sadly)
5.Schecter (sadly)
9.B.C. rich
If you don't vote Ibanez you're not a true metal head. Enough said.

Although they don't really venture out on the body shapes, their guitars look and sound great, and all 3 of my good guitars are Ibanez. My favorite came stock with good pick ups, a kill switch, and a really sturdy tremolo that doesn't need a retune every week. Aside from that, the neck is great, being incredibly thin as to let you maneuver, yet thick enough to not be awkward.

Especially the Ibanez Iceman series! They also have really good distortion pedals as well

My first guitar... they seriously make no-nonsense guitars

V15 Comments
5B.C. Rich

I have played a lot of guitars and definitively I choose B.C. rich as my favorite. With it's killer shape and great sound, they're the most great guitars I've ever played.

To see that quote of someone saying, "Kerry King is the only guitarist to use B.C. rich! " Is bull. The king of Death metal Chuck Schuldiner would destroy Kerry King. And Dave Mustaine did his legendary early recordings with Metallica on Kill 'em all.

My because rich warlock is a beast, definitely the best choice if you are a metal head. It's easy to shred and looks awesome on stage. My advice to you is to buy one if you still haven't

Its awesome I used it better than all

V16 Comments Visit Website9

Dime proved it... M/.

Have a dean love it I like it much more than my ibanez it sounds much heavier

I really like to play the dean guitar the strings, shape, and it sounds good for playing heavy metal.

Dimebag darrell and dave mustaine, enough said

V9 Comments

Gibsons, SGs and explorers especially can handle any sub-genera of metal. They have hot pick ups and fast necks. The best metal guitar all around is a gibson SG hands down. After all metal was founded by SGs.

Got an SG-400 myself Fast neck and consistent action, handles clean and high, sustained and dramatic, and low down and dirty. Mine is built like a tank and is hard to knock out of tune. But other than that Gibson has an entire battalion of artists in their stable that have inspired a lot of guitarists to pick one up in the first place.

Got one, they do the job really well. You of course have to have the money however I think that they are incredible. I wouldn't recommend the Les Paul Series as they don't have the best tone but SGs are fantastic.

Pretty have and thick sound, lots of harmonics and swallows distortion keeping the signature!

V10 Comments

I agree esp should be first, but my Kramer is really heavy! They should at least be in the top 10.

The old american made customs have absolutely no comparison - alexskolnick13

Lost my Kramer when I was a kid... I miss you Kramer!

I have a few Kramer Pacers from the 80's, american made. They rock!

V6 Comments

Epiphones are great guitars, they are versatile and can play any style, they have Gibson pickups and when you set it to rhythm it can really thud or scream.

Screaming pickups. Although I like my JEM more as an all around guitar.

They're Great, Just avoid the lower end Les Paul models like the Special II and Express.


I have a Fender Strat with a humbucker at the bridge, and it works out pretty nice - good feel for fast, technical stuff, and a nice sound. Maybe not for the more modern, extreme end of metal, but it worked fine for classic metal guitarists like Ritchie Blackmore (Deep Purple, Rainbow), Uli Roth and Matthias Jabs (Scorpions), Dave Murray and Janick Gers (Iron Maiden), Yngwie Malmsteen. Other bands like Saxon, Helloween, Gamma Ray I've seen pictures - they're playing either Strats or copies with a Strat shape.

I think fender aren't the best metal guitars but, fender do have the jim root series! Also jackson is owned by fender so is charvell and gretsch!

I actually own a Fender Strat and it sounds great for playing metal. Sure maybe it's not as good as ESP or Schecter but it's still decent enough. - MetalFoREVer1228

And don't forget john 5

V6 Comments

The Contenders


I love my Washburn X40ProQ, Floyd Rose Trem, Duncan pick ups and quilted blue body. Beautiful guitar

12Ernie Ball Music Man

Music man guitars can do anything! !

John Petrucchi rocks with it man! There are no other choices!

13Dave Murray

One of the greatest guitars ever. And of course afordable.


Why the hell weren't they mentioned.


I have no idea who put this on the list, but it's pretty funny, paha.

Gibson for me.

18Moser Custom Shop

Neal moser made the best guitar I'd ever had, until I traded it...

I'm friends with Neal Moser

For me the guitars made by Neal Moser would always be the best guitars in the world. My maple bodied Arachnid fitted with BKP Warpig Ceramics just scream metal...

V4 Comments
19Mayones Guitars

Ideal for 7 string stuff.


DBZ is the father of metal guitars! Vote for metal!

Best guitar with the best features. No crappy licensed parts, only original floyld rose tremolos, active pickups, and the best wood possible for sound and effortless playing!

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List StatsUpdated 10 Oct 2015

1,000 votes
41 listings
5 years, 166 days old

Top Remixes

1. ESP
2. Jackson
3. Kramer
1. Schecter
2. Ibanez
3. Jackson



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