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Old 11-04-2012, 09:18 AM   #21
tomxrich
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The ART's and the ARZ's I saw yesterday were definitely well put together guitars, looked on a par with LTD's of slightly higher prices. I've only had one Ibanez but it was great, but when they start getting really nice they seem to end up with active pickups which I want to avoid for this one... they are nice though, still looking at the Ibanez angle and good call mate

Danny, I'll drop them an email and see what they say, thanks man

I did get some really nice tones out of an Epiphone LP Traditional yesterday, and also an Epiphone LP Tribute Plus, but I'm not keen on picking between Wine Red or Black for the Trad. and the Tribute in the colour I dig had gold binding which I'm realllyyyy undecided on wether it looks classy or one day I'm going to wake up, look at my guitar, and hurl haha

Time for a proper mission round a load of shops this week I think... Thanks again and like I said I'll post when I stop being a little girl about it and bite the bullet
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Old 11-04-2012, 11:16 AM   #22
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Also found a pretty funny quote, which seems quite ill-educated and unsure of itself from genuine Epiphone literature back in the late 90's...

"Our Epiphone Les Paul guitars are built 100 percent to Gibson Les Paul specifications. However, an Epiphone Les Paul is different from a Gibson Les Paul in the following main areas: In general our Epiphone instruments are about 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of Gibson guitars. Therefore, we have to make some adjustments to the specifications in order to be able to offer our customers this kind of value including fewer inlays, a thinner maple-veneer top, and the use of chrome hardware instead of gold"

The most interesting thing I've found as this is the most I've ever looked into it, is this video of a tour of the Gibson USA factory... with so many machine cut necks and bodies piled up, yes the wood is better quality and anything that isn't one piece will be matched better and most likely come from the same tree so the guitar will resonate with more stability over an Epiphone - on paper - but I don't see how there can be a huge difference, i.e 1500 difference, from a guitar where the body and neck are made by a machine and then hand assembled by somebody in bulk on a mass production assembly line regardless of whether it's in the States or Qing Dao or wherever else LTD or Ibanez or Vintage make them... especially with the quite common place lacklustre finishing and assembly of Gibsons I've seen at the moment haha

I'm also a little put off by Gibson being named as one of the worst places to work in America BY employees... If you're into guitars and you work in a guitar factory, the management and co or conditions have to be pretty bad for you to not enjoy your job. I'd have though they'd have really high job satisfaction.

Anyway... I really don't have anything to do today hence all the research and shit talking, and I'm sorry for rambling and bumping this thread but I hope all the info and opinions of everyone in here helps some other people too as I know it's a big subject that comes up a lot and I'm sure this thread will come up quick enough if anyone ever hits the search button. Cheers.
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Old 11-04-2012, 03:37 PM   #23
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It is hard to shop if you're shopping for integrity. Both Gibson and Fender have very disappointing aspects about them.

Maybe look at PRS? Don't know a whole lot about their practices.

You could also look into an MIJ LP copy, such as Orville, Edwards, Burny, etc..

This is strictly my opinion, but I consider the Japanese the masters of making the electric guitar. Which partly contributes to my love for ESP and Ibanez (and yes, I'm aware that my own guitars are MIK. But the design and concepts are there).
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Old 11-04-2012, 07:20 PM   #24
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Good call dude, I did have a pretty intense bidding session on a Greco LP Copy the other day haha, I had to stop myself in the end though before I had to live on soup for the rest of the month lol Yeah ESP and Edwards are definitely sweet, played an EC 256P with their P90 Soapbar copy pickups, can pull some sweet tones out of that beauty, but the gold was a big toooo gold and the black looked a bit too much like the black one I've already got... might just buy it anyway, sound's the important thing I guess

Will have a decision by the end of the week anyway.

Down to a Gibson LP Studio in whatever colour's cheapest if I can find one that's finished to a decent standard, a PRS SE Tremonti in Vintage Cherry, or maybe a LTD EC 256 if I can get over the gold finish and then I can enjoy saving 150 or so as well... we'll see
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Old 11-04-2012, 08:29 PM   #25
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Skipped a lot of posts besides the first two,


But Gibsons are definitely overpriced. If you really want a Gibson I'd suggest getting a used one. But if you're looking at Gibsons with EMGs or putting EMGs into one the definitely go straight for the ESP/LTD's.

It might be the guitar purist in me, but I hate seeing a higher range guitar like Gibson with EMGs in it afterstock. It's almost sacreligious
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Old 11-04-2012, 09:33 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by tomxrich
Good call dude, I did have a pretty intense bidding session on a Greco LP Copy the other day haha, I had to stop myself in the end though before I had to live on soup for the rest of the month lol Yeah ESP and Edwards are definitely sweet, played an EC 256P with their P90 Soapbar copy pickups, can pull some sweet tones out of that beauty, but the gold was a big toooo gold and the black looked a bit too much like the black one I've already got... might just buy it anyway, sound's the important thing I guess

Will have a decision by the end of the week anyway.

Down to a Gibson LP Studio in whatever colour's cheapest if I can find one that's finished to a decent standard, a PRS SE Tremonti in Vintage Cherry, or maybe a LTD EC 256 if I can get over the gold finish and then I can enjoy saving 150 or so as well... we'll see


If you want some MIJ Gibsonish tones, check Yamaha SGs or MIJ Tokais... I've had good experiences with both, sweet guitars. And if you are lucky, you might actually have them for relatively cheap (same price as a low end LP studio).
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:17 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by JAHellraiser
Skipped a lot of posts besides the first two,


But Gibsons are definitely overpriced. If you really want a Gibson I'd suggest getting a used one. But if you're looking at Gibsons with EMGs or putting EMGs into one the definitely go straight for the ESP/LTD's.

It might be the guitar purist in me, but I hate seeing a higher range guitar like Gibson with EMGs in it afterstock. It's almost sacreligious


Haha I agree with you completely man, I've got one of the first run of Epi LP Prophecy's with EMG's in, and that's suprisingly well made and does anything I need it to for metal, so the next guitar will be staying exactly as is for some blues and less lairy rock stuff

Doogy, I'll keep checking into the Tokai's, seems to be a little confusing now as last time I looked was a good while ago and anything with Love Rock on the head stock was MIJ and now they seem to have a load of MIC Love Rock's too...

We'll see ay, the time's nearly come, just waiting for another debit card to turn up from my bank because my last just expired haha, but as soon as it's here I'll be getting on it
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Old 11-05-2012, 11:59 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by tomxrich
Haha I agree with you completely man, I've got one of the first run of Epi LP Prophecy's with EMG's in, and that's suprisingly well made and does anything I need it to for metal, so the next guitar will be staying exactly as is for some blues and less lairy rock stuff

Doogy, I'll keep checking into the Tokai's, seems to be a little confusing now as last time I looked was a good while ago and anything with Love Rock on the head stock was MIJ and now they seem to have a load of MIC Love Rock's too...

We'll see ay, the time's nearly come, just waiting for another debit card to turn up from my bank because my last just expired haha, but as soon as it's here I'll be getting on it


I kinda forgot about Tokai/Greco/Burny, but if you did enjoy Gibson LP's, you should definatly consider these pre-lawsuit guitars. Japanese models will generally be cheaper, yet better then most low-model Gibsons.

You've been talking much about price difference, and how Gibson is a respected company, making respectful guitars, you can't seem to find the difference for all that money they ask. These three brands are probably the best you can think if your looking to the cloest to the real thing (a relic gibson LP) yet for a lot less.

That link to the shop in Birmingham has a lot of those, and that's what I was looking for. Although since I'm a lefty, the best I could go with was a Tokai Love Rock chinese model (not sure weither it's the ALC53 or ALS48).

But yeah, in a punchline, definatly put these at top priority in your list if you really enjoyed your Gibsons, because Koreand and Japanese models just show what "building to Gibson specifications" is really about, yet since it isn't made in America and has a different logo on the headstock, they manage to charge it for a lot less.
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:32 PM   #29
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Check out Dean man. They have some nice guitars. I've been playing them since I got my first one at 15.
They have a nice lp copy as well if that's what your in to. I would say try befor you buy. go to a g.c. and try out any you think ya might like.
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Old 11-05-2012, 07:30 PM   #30
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I can't find any nice Dean Cadillac's or Singlecuts right now man, I do love a good Dean though haha, my girlfriend is dead set on a Brazilia Burst ML next, I like the V neck Dean run as well, perfect without being too pointed like the DBZ's, you got good taste dude

Can't stretch to Burny's or Greco's right now, they seem to be fetching as much as used Gibson Standards do now... I think the MIJ Scene-Tax is as high as the Gibson fan boi tax in the UK right now, but I'd happily have one if I found one.

I did actually email Tokai UK about the ALC53 in Vintage Sunburst earlier and looked at some Seymour Duncans to drop in, looking forward to their reply, just want to check they're still Korean made because I played one of the MIK ones a while back and it played beautifully.

That shop in Brimingham was sweeet though, I did check it out mate, I proper LOVE some of the ones they've sold lately, if I'd have found it a little earlier I may well have blown the budget out of the water haha I'll keep checking back though

Debating one of the Epi LP Tribute with braided wiring and Gibson pickups because I'm pretty sure they're still inspected properly in the US with the Epi LP Customs and Epiphone's higher model quality is plenty passable. I'll let you know dude, won't be long down, eBay just ****ed me and cancelled 6 items I had bids on so that knocked a bit of potential money out of my pocket haha
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Old 11-06-2012, 06:52 AM   #31
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If you want something cheap but good quality, may I suggest an old Ibanez Roadstar II? Well put together, fast necks and will last forever. I'm a big fan.
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Old 11-06-2012, 08:13 AM   #32
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Man I looked harddd for a Roadstar last time I went shopping, I'm a fan too and fair play to ya, I'd love one but nice ones don't seem to come up when I look, same as the MIJ stuff, I just have shit luck trying to find nice guitars...

Literally got 3 tabs open right now trying to decide...

Epiphone LP Tribute - Gibson braided wiring and Switchcraft with Gibson 57/57+ Pickups

LTD EC-401 VF - The sunburst one with SD JB and 59 Pickups

Gibson LP Studio 60's Tribute in honeyburst with the ole soapbar P90's

If anyone can help me pick between these today it'd be awesome because I want it asap and I've been staring at the screen for about an hour on and off between smoking and banging my head against the wall... gonna end up flipping a coin at this rate lol
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Old 11-06-2012, 08:27 AM   #33
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There's a lovely RS530 on Gumtree in London that I was going to buy for 240 just now. Might be worth a look?
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Old 11-06-2012, 09:30 AM   #34
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Will check it now mate, thanks I'm miles from London though, down in the South West, nothing much around here :/
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Old 11-06-2012, 09:43 AM   #35
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Well I cheekily asked him if he'd include shipping to Leeds for the price and he said yeah sure, if it's a quick sale, so try your luck?

It's a lovely looking thing and I own an RS530 myself. 2 Humbuckers with coil splitting built in for even more versatility. The only negatives are the trem isn't supposed to be as good as a later Edge trem, but I block mine anyway, and they are quite heavy.

Hope that helps.
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Old 11-06-2012, 10:18 AM   #36
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Thanks man, might drop him a line

Think I can rule out the Gibson either way though, for the money I'd prefer the LTD 401 VF.

Just got to decide if it's worth the extra over the Epi Tribute with a free hard case.
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Old 11-06-2012, 01:30 PM   #37
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If you get the LTD, I strongly urge you to look used for an MIK one. The new MIC ones are pretty shit in my experience, in comparison.
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Old 11-06-2012, 02:48 PM   #38
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Thanks man, I found one from a good while ago that was old stock at the back of the warehouse but still boxed up, and when it was gotten out and set up it felt gorgeous - bar needing new strings which I blagged for free

I played an EC-256P with soap bars, a Gibson 60's Tribute with soap bars, the Epiphone Les Paul Tribute with Gibson electrics and pick ups, a Gibson Standard just because it was there and I didn't look like a pikey today haha, and an EC-401VF before the one I now have, as well as a cheaper but still really nicely built and finished Ibanez ART, so I bit the bullet and took the LTD.

My honest opinion now is that Gibson are purely selling on reputation and brand name now, although good ones are still fantastic guitars so I'm not slagging them off, there does seem to be a lot more mistakes and imperfections and a distinct lack of 'give a shit' at the factory right now... at least on the Studios and Standards which are still expensive enough to justify a good build and finish. Epiphone have their dogs and gems like any other 'cheaper' brand and I'm sure LTD do too, but when you get a good one they really can be very good.

And finally when a nice MIJ LP copy comes up in the future, I'll try and have some money set aside to grab it without hesitating - And thelittleguitarshop.com site is great so thanks JPCL for the link and I'll check it frequently from now on, but for the minute I'm more than happy with the LTD and can't believe I waited so long before getting hold of one

Thanks to everyone who replied, everyone's been awesome and I appreciate every reply, so take it steady guys and have a good one. Hope this thread comes in handy for some other people too... Cheers
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Old 11-06-2012, 11:41 PM   #39
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You should do a NGD and give a brief summary of your journey. Would be cool, and most importantly people just wanna see pics.
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