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#1
i have scrapped the Dinky as far as new guitar goes, i'm needing a Les Paul to fulfill my wants. and i want my next guitar to be of a really good quality for the price. I know that Tokais are Japanese made and highly comparable to Gibsons in the sound AND quality department. So i've been looking around there website and found a LP that i'm considering saving for:

http://www.tokai-guitars.co.uk/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=shop.flypage&product_id=96&category_id=16&manufacturer_id=0&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=31

this first one is beautiful, i have always loved the look of a white les paul, even though i'm more fond of chrome/nickel hardware than gold, it's still a beauty. it's price is right around the $550 mark, which means it wouldn't take long for me to save up and buy!

the price and features-for-price are what i like about this best, along with the look. but my concern is that this will not be much of an upgrade from my Epiphone G-400 which is Korean made and pretty good bang for the buck. but i'm wanting Gibson like quality (think 70s/80s, not modern day) or at least CLOSE to. i want this to last a long time without me really needing to upgrade anything save the pups one day.

the guitar is made of basswood though, how is that going to sound? this is mainly gonna be for hard rock/blues. they have others that are maple tops with alder backs if those would be better. my SG is mahogany so i don't know quite what the difference in sound will be.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#2
how much do they go for.

If you get a better deal buying used amps, then i bet you can get a great deal buying a used guitar.
#3
this goes for $550 new. and i think i just found out that this model is actually Korean made...

i'm wanting japanese made so i guess i'm gonna have to spend more. but yea i'm looking on eBay to find some good deals. none on craigslist, in fact never see any near me.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#4
maybe this is good.

http://www.dillionguitars.com/guitar/electric/\

all the reviews ive seen say there awesome guitars.

also i cant bealieve you havent tought of this but look into these.

http://shop.ebay.com/?_from=R40&_trksid=m38.l1313&_nkw=epiphone+elitist&_sacat=See-All-Categories

If you can save up some more buck there better than gibson lo end, and ive heard just as good as the high end for cheaper.
#5
basswood bodies are not the greatest. a lot of heavy metal guitars are made out of them, its very bright and snappy. I always recommend mahogany if you want something that can sound like anything.
#6
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#8
i don't really know anything of Edwards, only that every once in a while someone mentions their clones of gibbies. how do they compare? i know that Tokai has a great reputation. i guess no one here can tell me how the Korean model of Tokai compares to others eh....

well i'm getting ready to check your links bucketmark, so thanks for those. and thanks to SFR for the info, i was aware that metal guitars favor the basswood, but didn't know the tonal characteristics, so i appreciate it.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#9
yah the grecos are supposed to be really bomb, never played one tough.

Have you looked into Epiphone Elitist.

Thats the link i provided.
#10
some of those Grecos looked nice, i'm going to look into those more also. i'm still likin' the Tokai love rock the most, for the price anyway. and i know of Epi etlists, but i'm really interested in having a guitar of another brand, i love my Epi G-400, i just want a different guitar for personal reasons. and if i go used, the guitar can't really have much wear or tear on it...dings and scratches make my stomach churn when it comes to my own guitar...which to a lot of you prolly seems silly but for me, it reflects the way i treat my guitar- so yea, my G-400 i've had for a few years practically looks brand new and you'd have a hard time telling otherwise unless you shine the pickguard body wood in the light for those super-fine scratches that are inevitable to any guitar.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#12
looking at them right now, bucketmark. i'll let you know if i see some good stuff .

though, on a side note, where would i be able to order a brand new Tokai from if i decided to go that route? i read that they don't ship to the US and some sites are making it seem like i have to buy used from other dealers in canada or hopefully find what i want on eBay.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#13
If the Tokai is made of bass wood it won't sound like a mahagony Les Paul. The bass wood Tokai may well be a nice guitar but for a good les paul clone you would need to look at the made in Japan mahogany Tokai Les Paul copies.
#14
I have a high end MIJ Tokai and it is amazing. Much nicer than the Gibsons I played which were 300 quid more (LP standards). However, I would say if you're gunna go for it try and save up for a MIJ one, I have heard that the gap between the MIK and MIJ ones is pretty big.
No man has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable


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#16
I'd go with Edwards as well, like the guy above me. Edwards is a part of ESP. I've played three of their Les Pauls, and I've been impressed every time.

Plus, what Horlicks said - that just looks weird.
#17
Either Edwards or find a cheap used Epiphone Elitist.
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#18
Just get anything from the Fuji-Gen plant.
Epiphone Elitist SG (Serious)
Tokai Silver Star
Epiphone Dot
Epiphone Les Paul
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#20
^i'm sure that the MIJ tokais are equivalent to the etlist epis, but standard tokais are prolly better than standard epis since they're made in Korea as opposed to China. my assumption anyway.

yea i'm not too keen on getting the white LP b/c of the basswood mostly. so i think my budget is going to allow for a MIJ LP. is there a brand that is as good quality as Tokai that is sold in the US? and the same price range, if not slightly cheaper.

slash_edit: http://cgi.ebay.com/TOKAI-Vintage-Series-Les-Paul-Model-LC95S-Black_W0QQitemZ250304931576QQihZ015QQcategoryZ2384QQssPageNameZWD1VQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1638Q2em118Q2el1247

this might be the one i save up for if i don't find a better one suited to my wants
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#21
Quote by slash_rocks2005
^i'm sure that the MIJ tokais are equivalent to the etlist epis, but standard tokais are prolly better than standard epis since they're made in Korea as opposed to China. my assumption anyway.

yea i'm not too keen on getting the white LP b/c of the basswood mostly. so i think my budget is going to allow for a MIJ LP. is there a brand that is as good quality as Tokai that is sold in the US? and the same price range, if not slightly cheaper.

slash_edit: http://cgi.ebay.com/TOKAI-Vintage-Series-Les-Paul-Model-LC95S-Black_W0QQitemZ250304931576QQihZ015QQcategoryZ2384QQssPageNameZWD1VQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1638Q2em118Q2el1247

this might be the one i save up for if i don't find a better one suited to my wants

They're all discontinued, but look for an Orville or a Greco.
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#22
May I also recommend the Fernandes Ravelle at this point?

Have a look on flea-bay for an old Orville too, they're Gibson's japanese brand. So you get proper Gibbo parts, with 'Les Paul' on the headstock - but with Japanese manufacturing (no bad thing, in my opinion) and dirt cheap prices. Worth investigating.
#23
ooooh ok i was trying to figure out what Orville was, so i'll be looking into those too.

slash_edit: how does Orville compare to Tokai? they're both MIJ, but the Orvilles seem to be cheaper by a couple hundred or sometimes a little more. if they're the same quality i might look into those instead.

who knew finding the perfect guitar would be so tough
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
Last edited by slash_rocks2005 at Dec 21, 2008,
#24
bumpity.

i would still like to know if anyone knows FIRSTHAND how Orville is, and even more if they know how it compares to Tokai.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#25
bump again. it seems my thread is almost extinct already..

anyway, if anyone can give me a firsthand review/comparison of Orville and/or Edwards guitars and how they compare to Gibsons, i'd appreciate it alot!

my budget is prolly gonna be $1000 maybe a hundred or so over at MOST just to pay for shipping or whatever, in case i end up just getting a Tokai Love Rock custom or even an Edwards custom, any of em i'd have to spend about $1000 - $1100 altogether. should be worth it.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#26
dude stop bumping...


*reported*
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long live bucketmark.
#27
You said it yourself.
That guitar has gold hardware.
Filthy, look elsewhere.


HAIKU!
#28
Quote by stujomo
If the Tokai is made of bass wood it won't sound like a mahagony Les Paul. The bass wood Tokai may well be a nice guitar but for a good les paul clone you would need to look at the made in Japan mahogany Tokai Les Paul copies.


+1

that tokai you linked to isn't japanese-made.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#29
Truthfully, I would go with an Epi LP over all the wanna bes, Gibson really makes sure they are made well and in some cases I have come across some better than the original. If you don't think Epi would be a good choice Agile makes the best LP copy I ever played over all the others I have tried. I was never impressed with Tokia guitars and the fact it's bass wood means the tone probably wont even come close to a Gibson LP like the Epis do.


John
#30
bucketmark, the rules for bumping are no more than once an hour. i have been bumping in between errands and work so i'm not just sitting here staring at the screen.

and no, i'm not going after the Korean made Tokai, i'm going for MIJ and that's why my budget is enough to allow for one.

Quote by johnro6659
Truthfully, I would go with an Epi LP over all the wanna bes, Gibson really makes sure they are made well and in some cases I have come across some better than the original. If you don't think Epi would be a good choice Agile makes the best LP copy I ever played over all the others I have tried. I was never impressed with Tokia guitars and the fact it's bass wood means the tone probably wont even come close to a Gibson LP like the Epis do.


i'm wanting to try another brand this time, personal preference. i love my Epi G-400, but i'm not getting ready to pay high money for a chinese made guitar, and i'm not wanting to buy an etlist epi just b/c i really want to try one of these popular MIJ copies i keep hearing about. and like stated before, i'm not going with the cheaper tokai if i do go that brand, but the higher end one. whichever one i decide on, it'll be mahogany or mahogany/alder.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#31
if you know you want a japanese ones, just make sure it is japanese. as i said, that one you originally linked to wasn't. as a general rule of thumb, if you have a list of the specs, if it uses the "wrong" woods, it's probably not japanese... also if it's too cheap. it's not foolproof, but a bit of common sense should steer you right. far as i can tell, if the model code is "ALS", it's not japanese, if it's "LS" it normally is (but that might not be true 100% of the time). EDIT: also, you should bear in mind that there is a wide range of models ranging from mid-range to high-end, even among the japanese-made models. you don't want to be paying high-end prices for the lowliest MIJ model, for example...

if you aren't sure, ask, basically.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#32
^yes, any guitar that i happen to be interested in i will post and find out from other UGers so that way i'm not going in blind. but here's a couple that i'm looking at as of now:

http://cgi.ebay.com/TOKAI-Vintage-Series-Les-Paul-Model-LC95S-Black_W0QQitemZ250304931576QQihZ015QQcategoryZ2384QQssPageNameZWD1VQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1638Q2em118Q2el1247

i'm liking this one a lot b/c of the binding all around the headstock and body and neck, really appeals to me.

http://cgi.ebay.com/TOKAI-Vintage-Series-Les-Paul-LS100Q-CS-CherrySunburst_W0QQitemZ250334195868QQihZ015QQcategoryZ2384QQssPageNameZWD1VQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1638Q2em118Q2el1247

this one is really nice too, but doesn't have the binding which i'm very fond of, but the quilted top is a nice feature for sure.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Edwards-ESP-LP-CTM-JS-Ebony-BLK-W-S-DUNCAN-Brand-NEW_W0QQitemZ150316656146QQihZ005QQcategoryZ33038QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

i would have to swap out the volume/tone knobs with some more classy LP ones, as well as a different pickguard that doesn't look too...un LPish.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Edwards-ESP-LP-CTM-Vintage-WH-W-S-DUNCAN-PU-S-Brand-NEW_W0QQitemZ170288205022QQihZ007QQcategoryZ33038QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
only thing i would change ASAP would be the knobs, for some classy LP ones.


so as you can see, i've got a good few to choose from. i'm not going used b/c i hate dings and scratches and paint chips, i keep my guitar(s) in mint condition and the 'worn' look does not appeal to me at all sorry.

i'm assuming these are all high end MIJ models, though if you think any of them are considered 'mid range' let me know...i'm springing for high end here, not one that is just 'good', but 'great.'

slash_edit: i guess i should correct my last statement, maybe a lot of people's definition of 'high end' would be multi-thousand dollar instruments, but for me i mean professional-grade and great quality components throughout the ENTIRE guitar. so just in case anyone out there thinks i'm crazy for saying a guitar right around the $1000 mark is 'high end' when your idea of 'high end' is a $2000 guitar! haha, please remember that i use a (then)$400 modded guitar and come from a family where $1000 spent on anything is a huge chunk of money. /added note
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
Last edited by slash_rocks2005 at Dec 22, 2008,
#33
i'm not sure if you'd call those high-end... i don't have time to check now (i'm missing a tv program i want to watch), but bump it later and i'll take a look.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#34
i just got off work, so here's a long due bump for ya mr. Mc
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#35
^

ok, as far as i'm aware, those are more or less mid-range models. they'll compare favourably to Gibson standards (the examples of each which I've tried, anyway), but probably won't be as nice as custom shop gibsons, certainly not as vintage-accurate, anyway. i'm not sure if those tokais have nitro-finishes either, the John Sykes edwards doesn't, the other edwards has a nitro top coat i think, and the electronics on both tokais and edwardses won't be as nice as the gibsons (that's a cheap fix, though).

it really depends on how much money you have to spend, and on what specs you're willing to compromise. you can get japanese-made guitars which'll destroy Gibsons (Navigator, high-end tokais, bacchus, etc.), but then they're going to cost what a gibson does!

I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#36
^well $1000 (give or take a couple hundred) really is my max budget these days. i'm sure once i get out of college in a couple years and have a nice salary, i won't be constricted so much and will afford a custom level guitar.

like i said, MY idea of high end is a guitar that costs anywhere from a grand or more (and has matching quality to price ratio). what is it about the nitro finish that's so appealing? i hear about it all the time but only guess that it's more durable and resistant to scratching/dinging.

in the end, i think one of those 'standard' tokais that i'm looking at will completely destroy my G-400. i'll save the custom shop quality for when i'm making salary . thanks Dave.

oh, and which do you think would be a nicer look? black les paul with gold hardware, or the snow white les paul with gold? i'm thinking the white...
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#37
yeah i'm a fan of what tokai does for the people without a spare 10,000.

but a les paul? okay, jimmy page is one of my favourite artists, but apart from the way it looks, what is the appeal of a les paul to you?
#38
Quote by johnro6659
Truthfully, I would go with an Epi LP over all the wanna bes, Gibson really makes sure they are made well and in some cases I have come across some better than the original. If you don't think Epi would be a good choice Agile makes the best LP copy I ever played over all the others I have tried. I was never impressed with Tokia guitars and the fact it's bass wood means the tone probably wont even come close to a Gibson LP like the Epis do.


John


You must be kidding if you think that an Epi LP is a better guitar than a Tokai MIJ les paul.

Every MIJ les paul I've played has been mahogany and sounds much closer to a Gibson les paul than any Epiphone I've ever heard outside of the Elitist models.
Last edited by al112987 at Dec 24, 2008,
#39
^ah i was wondering if al would ever stop by my thread...you seem to be wise in the ways of LPs and Marshalls ha.

i've got no beef against Epi, but i hear so many great things about tokai which is why i want to try them out. is it bad that something as simple as the headstock shape of a guitar can completely turn me off from wanting to get it? i mean...i saw the Epi Elitist headstock and i was like, 'you gotta be kidding..' i would rather have the traditional epi headstock over that thing. once i get past the tonal qualities, i get real picky about looks. but i think every serious guitar player reserves the right to do so.
My MAIN Gear
____________
"They call him the 'Sand Spider.' -Why? -Probably because it sounds scary"
*Agile AL3000 Les Paul w/ Alnico IIs
*Randall RM50
*Dunlop CFH
*fellow LEO feel free to give a shout out
#40
Quote by slash_rocks2005
^ah i was wondering if al would ever stop by my thread...you seem to be wise in the ways of LPs and Marshalls ha.

i've got no beef against Epi, but i hear so many great things about tokai which is why i want to try them out. is it bad that something as simple as the headstock shape of a guitar can completely turn me off from wanting to get it? i mean...i saw the Epi Elitist headstock and i was like, 'you gotta be kidding..' i would rather have the traditional epi headstock over that thing. once i get past the tonal qualities, i get real picky about looks. but i think every serious guitar player reserves the right to do so.


Ugh I feel the same way about the Elitist headstock. The Japan only Elitists and other Japan only Epiphones have the normal open book headstock like Gibson. They're built specifically for the Japanese markets and not for export. Example: http://cgi.ebay.com/Epiphone-by-Gibson-Lespaul-custom-MIJ-Long-neck-tenon_W0QQitemZ120349988893QQcmdZViewItemQQptZGuitar?hash=item120349988893&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1205%7C66%3A2%7C65%3A12%7C39%3A1%7C240%3A1318%7C301%3A1%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A50
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