Top 10 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 all the realistic brands so please add whatever you think is the best brand for metal.
The Top Ten
1 ESP

Schecter and ESP are the best. Jackson's pro series is made in China now which is a big letdown, on the plus side their USA line is affordable again but the specs are not quite as good and the case is soft shell which is lame. Ibanez admittedly has top quality stuff but I myself and many others in guitar forums have hand and wrist issues playing the prestige necks which are way too thin and flat. If you can tolerate the neck of an Ibanez prestige then congrats but such a divisive neck shape hurts it in my eyes. Schecter and esp have thinner than normal necks (thin C and thin U respectively) and if that's not thin enough you can get certain models with ultra thin C and extra thin U neck shapes. You get custom shop specs and very good build quality for the models in the 1 to 1.5k range.

I play on lot mid-range and high end guitars.. I have few ESP models, few LTD.. I have also few mid-range and high end Jackson and B.C. Rich.. Before used Gibson, Fender, Ibanez etc... (gibson and fender are just expensive, but NOT GOOD for them cost guitars! For example I had Fender - cost look as 7000 euro! Crazy.. This is price for 2 REALLY GREAT ESP Custom Shop models and will have the cash for a good Bass! Fender is just a name! nothing more.. ESP is the best guitar builder all over the world! )

actually the best instrument ever I touch (I have one piece of this treasure) is ESP Jeff Hanneman UC model from 2006.. the fines giutar ever I saw!

ESP rocks!

2 Jackson

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!

3 Schecter

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.

The Schecter blackjack sls is hands down the most comfortable guitar I have ever played. Super slim neck like a jackson but not flat like an ibby (I'm personally not crazy about flat necks). The ergonomics of this guitar are just amazing and the specks are super nice for the price. Ebony fretboard with a satin finish on a super thin neck and seymore duncan pickups to top it off make this axe a joy to shred on. It has a coil tap as well for added versatility although I don't use it much myself. All in all, this guitar can be put up against any other on this list, ESP and jackson and ibanez all make wonderful guitars but this one takes the cake in terms of looks, play ability, and versatility and is cheaper than many of the top contenders. The hellraiser, blackjack, and banshee are all around $800-$900 while a top end ESP may cost $5,000.

4 Ibanez

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:
1.Ibanez
2.PRS
3.ESP
4.Jackson (sadly)
5.Schecter (sadly)
6.Kramer
7.Dean
8.Washburn
9.B.C. rich
10.DBZ
If you don't vote Ibanez you're not a true metal head. Enough said.

My real first guitar was a Ibanez GIO... Excellent piece of metal, just right for beginners.
After I had Ibanez SA260FM... Just superb, feels nice in hand. I replace one of the single coil with a Clean D'Addario Mic and was outstanding clean sound.
I also like Jackson, and probably my next guitar is going to be one (a Jackson Dinky JS11). Because I'm short of money and in Panamá there is no Ibanez GIO in any store. But I'm sure I'm going to love it. Once I bought a Jackson with Sustainer Mic, and was the real deal.
Sadly I sold them all for other uses. I want to rebuy my gears.

My top 5:
Ibanez (Fast, for Metal Musicians)
Jackson
Gibson
ESP (I never play one, but I'm sure they are great)
Fender

5 Kramer

My first real guitar was a Kramer Pacer. Like a bonehead, I sold it. Wish I still had it. I've had about everything since then, but Kramer gets my vote.

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

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

6 B.C. Rich

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.

A B.C. Rich Warlock will crush the tone of a Les Paul on stage any day. Fat warm tone, clean as hell on lead too.B.C. Rich is the best metal guitars available, and the price is killer. $500 dollars will smoke a 1,000 and uo Gibson any day. Just for starters, just saying though.

I own a B.C. Rich KKV I love it. I also own a Jackson RR5 I thought I would love I was wrong having to cut the ball off every string is a pain and seems to always need to be retuned every time I go to play it. my B.C. Rich always is in tune. I sleep with mine. I've yet to be disappointed. Sure it was made in Korea and not the U.S.A. but I bought it second hand so I got what I got my Jackson probally isn't made in the U.S.A. either.

7 Dean

They are my go to and I have had many and never had a problem with them and they just sound beefy compared to many esp and other metal guitars I have played.

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

My Dean Guitar lets me do so much and then some. Great for not only metal, but also hard rock. RIP Dime.

8 Gibson

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.

I'm in a metal band and I use a Gibson Les Paul and a Vox amplification. The is a certain range that I can get with my LP and Vox that rules all. My second choice is Jackson. Jacksons are really good guitars but I prefer my Gibsons and Fenders

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.

9 Washburn

I've had Schecters, Gibsons, Fenders, Guilds, and a dean. Washburn overall has the best feel, and the best crunch for metal of any guitars I own. Depends on the genre of metal though, my start kills for thrash and my guild is unbeatable for doom

Washburn maya is legendary!

10 Epiphone

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.

The Contenders
11 Fender

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 see it this way: if switch out the pickups to humbuckers and maybe get a Floyd Rose installed, and even go to get the neck switched out (like a schecter/ ibanez or other necks) then you can have one of the greatest metal guitars around.

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.

12 Ernie Ball Music Man

My music man screams and really easy to play. #13

Fret Accessibility and tone are amazing!

Music man guitars can do anything! !

13 Solar

Best guitars I played ever!

14 Charvel

I have a Charvel mod. 6 from around '89, and it smokes everything I have ever played. Craftsmanship and sound is up there..

Charvel is right up there. The recent San Dimas and SoCal models are incredibly versatile.

Everybody in metal played Charvels in the 80's... The schaller floyd roses are xlnt and the jc-90 pickup is the best metal pickup ever.

15 Paul Reed Smith

Beautiful feeling, beautiful sounding guitars, but I prefer a thinner, set, or through-body neck, I love PRS, but not my favorite for speed, that's for sure. Depending on what pickups it has, is extremely versatile, and heavy, but just not built for speed.

Man PRS make the most versatile guitar in the world. Definitely for metal. Look at Mark Tremonti.

16 Carvin

Carvin guitars are perfect, super affordable, and since you choose the specs, they're truly Yours. Next best thing to building your own.

I have a CT4T, with C22J in the neck position and M22SD in the bridge, and while I spec'd it to be versatile (I also play jazz and funk and prog) there's no better instrument for metal.

Hands down, Carvin at #1. If you won't take my word for it, just ask Jason Becker or Lee McKinney.

I have a DC-127 since 1996 w/tremolo option,black chrome etc...It is hands down a fantastic guitar. Everybody that has played it has allways stated that it is a really nice playing guitar with a smooth neck and quality sound..I would buy another carvin in a heart beat..It also has good resale value...

Why the hell weren't they mentioned.

17 Mayones Guitars

Ideal for 7 string stuff.

18 DBZ

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!

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

19 Yamaha

The SGs have an amazing tone and don't have the heavy neck problems you often have with epiphone's. Honestly great metal guitars in comparison to what they charge.

20 Agile

Very nice specs for the price you can get an agile sector pro for 500 and get the specs that are on a +1000 guitar. 5 piece neck through, ebony fretboard, baritone scale, name brand pickups, and most have hipshot bridges and Grover tuners. These guitars are great for the money and the quality is what you would find on a hellraiser or Ltd mh1000. No locking tuners kind of sucks but an easy fix.

21 Legator Guitars
22 Solar Guitars

Monster that made it! Dimebag would be Proud! What more can you say that's Metal!

23 Eko
24 Hamer

Should be in top 3

25 Vox
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