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#1
hey guys. i was wondering this for a while now. i understand that epiphone is made in korea? and that gibson is made in the usa. but is there actually a huge difference between them (besides the price). will an epiphone les paul sound the same as a gibson les paul? if so, why? thanks!
#2
No.. You can change pickups and stuff, but the wood used to make a Gibson is way too much better, and this will give the Gibson-ish sound.
Btw, you're fine with a great epiphone with seymour duncans.
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#3
well actually, i have an epiphone les paul classic that compares, if not surpasses, the quality control that gibson has nowadays. my les paul is an 04 i think, but the new gibsons have horrible quality control, so you can never know which is better until you A/B them.
#4
high end epiphone>low end gibson
new pups, pots,etc Epiphone=low-mid range Gibsons.

To be honest the Gibsons are better quality, but other than pickups, you won't get much difference as far as I've experienced
Last edited by whatadrag at Sep 27, 2009,
#5
Quote by dlguitarmaster7
hey guys. i was wondering this for a while now. i understand that epiphone is made in korea? and that gibson is made in the usa. but is there actually a huge difference between them (besides the price). will an epiphone les paul sound the same as a gibson les paul? if so, why? thanks!


Actually it seems the newer Epiphones are made in China. Or maybe that's just because I bought my G-400 in Hong Kong .
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#6
yeah, mine g400 custom was built on china
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digital amps are like Fapping, its good but nothings like the real thing.
#7
Epiphone's have been built in China for a while now. You won't be finding any Korean guitars unless you hit the classifieds or ebay.

To answer the TS' question. No, an Epiphone won't sound the same as it's counterpart Gibson. In some cases, like the Epiphone DOT vs. the ES-335, the only real difference is the final stage of the finish and the pickups. The difference in woods doesn't make a $3000 difference.

In the case of a Les Paul or an SG, however, you'll need more than a pickup swap to compete with Gibson. Les Pauls and SG's are supposed to use vastly superior woods to their Epiphone counterparts which means there will be some shortcomings that new electronics just can't make up for. This is of course given ideal production conditions. Since you don't ever get ideal production conditions (ever) it's very possible to end up with an Epiphone that plays and sounds better than a Gibson.

One way to make sure your money is well invested is to take the time and go pick out your new guitar in person. Ordering online is like taking a shot in the dark, you might get lucky, but you also might not. Same kinda thing when you're shopping in person but at least you'll be able to spot the duds before you lay out any cash.

Whoo, that turned out to be a long post.
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#8
Epi LP Elitist is on par if not better than a new Gibby LP studio.
I've bought, sold, and traded more gear than I care to admit.
#9
Quote by Brendan.Clace
Epi LP Elitist is on par if not better than a new Gibby LP studio.
The Elitist line has been discontinued.
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#10
Older stuff was made in korea. Anything now is made in china, may still be some made in indonesia. Many say the low end gibsons arent very good anymore, and it seems even regular model gibsons the QC is slipping. Epis QC is nonexistant there are good 1s and crappy ones, its 50/50 you really have to play several to pick a good one. Whether there is a 2500$ difference in sound is debatable. The epi stock pick ups are crap but easy to remedy. And many epis have fretboard issues high/uneven frets etc again something that can be fixed.

There was a thread some where about covering the headstocks on epi and gibson guitars for comparison and most couldnt say 1 was better than the other. Never tried it so dont know how true it is. Ive never seen a lefty gibson in a store to be able to compare them myself. And dont plan to shell out the 2500$ to order a gibson anytime soon.
#11
Quote by ch0
The Elitist line has been discontinued.

Doesnt mean they POOF disappeared, you can hit up Craigslist or ebay for elitists.

Also, love the Darkness avatar
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#12
so is a gibson LP (standard) worth the extra $2000 or would u just go with an epiphone LP (standard)? is the sound noticably different? is it bad enough that i couldnt gig with an epi LP?
#13
^If I were you, I would get the Epi Standard, and replace the pups and tuners, then if needed, the bridge and pots. Much cheaper.
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#14
i doubt im experienced enough to do that. i could probably change the bridge and tuners. would it be expensive to have someone change the pickups for me?
#15
Honestly the pickups are one of the easiest things on the guitar to change, takes about 10-15 minutes or you could pay someone an extra $30 to do it (bad choice)
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#16
Quote by VanTheKraut
Honestly the pickups are one of the easiest things on the guitar to change, takes about 10-15 minutes or you could pay someone an extra $30 to do it (bad choice)

I need to learn how to do this, I want to put a Seymour Duncan in my Epiphone Les Paul Custom.
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#18
^Id be willing to bet there are about a million, check out youtube, then google.
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#19
I'd rather get a new Edwards or other Japanese copy than a new gibson.
#20
if i were to change the pickups, which pickups should i replace them with? or what pickups does a gibson les paul use?
#21
Pickup choice depends on what type of music you play, how much you're willing to spend, how much (if any) versatility do you need, etc.
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Hey guys in the last 3 weeks I ****ed all the girls in this picture, what do you think?

#22
Quote by VanTheKraut
Pickup choice depends on what type of music you play, how much you're willing to spend, how much (if any) versatility do you need, etc.

ok i have a band and our music sounds like acdc, led zep. im not looking for versatility at all. i probably wouldnt spend more than $100
#23
Quote by dlguitarmaster7
if i were to change the pickups, which pickups should i replace them with? or what pickups does a gibson les paul use?


There's a saying that goes "Epiphone users upgrade their pickups to Gibsons, and Gibson users upgrade their pickups to Seymour Duncan or DiMarzio or *insert one of the hundred other pickup companies here*".
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#24
Quote by Raijouta
There's a saying that goes "Epiphone users upgrade their pickups to Gibsons, and Gibson users upgrade their pickups to Seymour Duncan or DiMarzio or *insert one of the hundred other pickup companies here*".

haha it makes sense tho. people like me want gibson quality at a low price
#25
Hmm for ACDC/Led Zep Theres a couple Gibson pups you could go for.
57 Classics, Great for Classic/hard/blues rock (expensive)
Angus Youngs (which are basically hotter versions of 57's) (expensive)
BurstBucker, one of my favorite Gibby pickups, used alot in LP's. (expensive)
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#27
Quote by dlguitarmaster7
haha it makes sense tho. people like me want gibson quality at a low price


Most humbucker sets are around $200.

People really do need to stop hopping on the bandwagon that Gibson's quality control is going downhill. I've yet to play a bad Gibson, and I've played plenty of bad Epiphones, but it's all opinions. The Epiphones I found bad might be good to someone else, just like the Gibsons I found good, might be bad to someone else.

For pickups, Seymour Duncan and Dimarzio aren't the only pickup companies. There is Corduroy's pickup company here on the forums (search CorduroyEW) and there's boutique pickup makers, that sound better than the more popular pickups out there.
Last edited by FallsDownStairs at Sep 27, 2009,
#28
I have an older Korean-made Les Paul Custom and it is quite a nice guitar. The build quality is, in my opinion, on par with some lower-end Gibsons I've played (that is, by no means, a commentary of Gibson's QC as a whole--I've played some Gibsons and Epiphones that I felt were lacking and some that were very nice). As most have said, the Epiphone doesn't and perhaps never will sound like a Gibson, however, they are fully capable of being good sounding guitars.
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#29
The Epiphone Les Paul Custom is

But, essentially, it's not worth the extra couple hundred. The good thing about Epiphones are that they are very consistent and are inspected by Gibson in the US, so it was to pass their standards (even though lately there really hasn't been much standards.) Studios are EXTREMELY hit and miss, you will mostly find a junky one, but when you find a good one, they are amazing for the cash.
#30
To me, as far as quality and lack of dud experiences, the best series Ive found (for both gibbys and epis) is the standard, I dont think Ive ever picked up a standard epi or Gibby I didnt like.
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Hey guys in the last 3 weeks I ****ed all the girls in this picture, what do you think?

#32
Quote by VanTheKraut
To me, as far as quality and lack of dud experiences, the best series Ive found (for both gibbys and epis) is the standard, I dont think Ive ever picked up a standard epi or Gibby I didnt like.

so do u think that an epiphone les paul would sound good with the pickups it comes with?
#33
Quote by dlguitarmaster7
so do u think that an epiphone les paul would sound good with the pickups it comes with?


They sound decent. I have an Epi LP Standard. The stocks aren't very hot, the neck is very lacking in fullness and on the high end.
#34
First, the difference in the wood is very slight most people couldn't distinguish the difference in tone from Honduran Mahogany and the other types of mahogany being used today. All my EPIs have great tone and sustain IMO and I haven't done a thing with them. From what I understand some Epis still come from Korea but most come from Gibsons Epi plant in China manufactured under Gibsons watchful eye.

If you want a Gibson sound from an Epi just stay away from the low end ones with bolt on necks. The Epis with set necks is what you want to go for try and find a used Epi LP standard, custom or better. The studios are not bad either but I prefer the upper end Epis. Depending on the guitar some Epis have great pups some custom shop and special Epis have Gibby pups like the Toni Iommi, Prophecy and Limited Edition/Custom Shop ones. Some regular Epi pups are decent, some with just a little tweaking can be great I wax pot all my pups now it really makes a difference. If you do come across an Epi that you do not care for the pups then swap them out with a set of Gibson pups if you want a Gibson sound. I really like Gibsons Toni Iommi pups but they are the most expensive at $170.00 ea. The next Gibby pups I would recommend is the Classic 57s I have a set of those in an Agile DC LP and they are amazing. There are other pups out there that will sound great in an Epi, Rockfield and Guitar Fetish pups and won't break the bank. You can look at the other big brands if you want to invest that kind of dough.

As far as gigging with an Epi I see a lot of bands using Epis stock so you can gig with one right off the shelf.

As far as the electronic go before you swap them out check the numbers on the pots some Epis use the exact same pots as Gibson since Gibson started using pots made in China but even if you want to change them anyway that is a cheap upgrade. Epis hardware is pretty good but a good upgrade would be a graphite nut it will help it stay in tune. A lot of the mid and upper end Epis come with Grovers now a days so the tuners should be OK.

I myself would try and find a Gibson LP used. They are out there I looked a few today, my local music shop scored a 58 reissue with HSC for $1000.00 only minuets before I walked in the door. I played it and it was one of the best LPs I tried in a long, long time. I found a couple small issues with it but all in all IMO it was worth $1000.00 easy. If I was there when the guy was selling it I would have handed him cash right there on the spot. You might spend that upgrading an Epi including the cost of the guitar itself. Gibbys are out there for cheap $$ don't let the talk fool you in this crappy economy people are desperate and the prices of used Gibbys is very low.

John
Last edited by johnro6659 at Sep 27, 2009,
#35
Quote by johnro6659
First, the difference in the wood is very slight most people couldn't distinguish the difference in tone from Honduran Mahogany and the other types of mahogany being used today. All my EPIs have great tone and sustain IMO and I haven't done a thing with them. From what I understand some Epis still come from Korea but most come from Gibsons Epi plant in China manufactured under Gibsons watchful eye.

If you want a Gibson sound from an Epi just stay away from the low end ones with bolt on necks. The Epis with set necks is what you want to go for try and find a used Epi LP standard, custom or better. The studios are not bad either but I prefer the upper end Epis. Depending on the guitar some Epis have great pups some custom shop and special Epis have Gibby pups like the Toni Iommi, Prophecy and Limited Edition/Custom Shop ones. Some regular Epi pups are decent, some with just a little tweaking can be great I wax pot all my pups now it really makes a difference. If you do come across an Epi that you do not care for the pups then swap them out with a set of Gibson pups if you want a Gibson sound. I really like Gibsons Toni Iommi pups but they are the most expensive at $170.00 ea. The next Gibby pups I would recommend is the Classic 57s I have a set of those in an Agile DC LP and they are amazing. There are other pups out there that will sound great in an Epi, Rockfield and Guitar Fetish pups and won't break the bank. You can look at the other big brands if you want to invest that kind of dough.

As far as gigging with an Epi I see a lot of bands using Epis stock so you can gig with one right off the shelf.

As far as the electronic go before you swap them out check the numbers on the pots some Epis use the exact same pots as Gibson since Gibson started using pots made in China but even if you want to change them anyway that is a cheap upgrade. Epis hardware is pretty good but a good upgrade would be a graphite nut it will help it stay in tune. A lot of the mid and upper end Epis come with Grovers now a days so the tuners should be OK.

I myself would try and find a Gibson LP used. They are out there I looked a few today, my local music shop scored a 58 reissue with HSC for $1000.00 only minuets before I walked in the door. I played it and it was one of the best LPs I tried in a long, long time. I found a couple small issues with it but all in all IMO it was worth $1000.00 easy. If I was there when the guy was selling it I would have handed him cash right there on the spot. You might spend that upgrading an Epi including the cost of the guitar itself. Gibbys are out there for cheap $$ don't let the talk fool you in this crappy economy people are desperate and the prices of used Gibbys is very low.

John

yeah, the only thing is that im not a big fan of used guitars. i can understand used amps and stuff like that but used guitars arent my thing.
with that being said, i would probably do a new epiphone les paul. and if i like the sound i would probably keep the pickups it came with. which style of les paul would best fit acdc/led zep style of playing? (i.e. custom, standard)
#36
i find that they sound so simlar (to me)
that i would just save myself 500 buck
maybe more
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#37
Used guitars (Gibson) are what I made a living from in the 80s and most of the guitars I have owned were used. Never rule them out I have found used guitars in mint condition for a fraction of the price as a new one. All you need to do is try it out and inspect it. I do not recommend buying one unseen when buying used it's best if you can get your hands on it. Read up on different brands and get an idea of what to look for you will be very surprised at what's out there used especially when guitar stores won't give much on a used guitar most people will be happy to sell it for a little more.
#39
There is so much misinformation in this thread, I barely know where to begin.

OP, if you really want to know more about Epiphone/Gibson comparions, just search the forums for threads with both Epi and Gibson in the title, it's been discussed to death and I personally have already spent far too many hours of my life writing about it on here.
Though if you're lazy, the short answer is no, no Epi is ever going to sound or play like a Gibson, unless you got an Epi Elitist, spent hundreds extra fine-tuning it, and then it'll be on-par with a Gibson Standard, perhaps a tiny touch better - but the cost of an Elitist plus all the adjustments you'd need to make would cost about the same as a Gibson Standard would anyway.

Quote by dlguitarmaster7
does the epiphone les paul custom sound any better than the standard?
They're exactly the same.
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#40
There's a huge difference between Epi and Gibson Les Pauls. They're not made from the same wood. The Gibson is made of mahogany with a solid maple cap. The Epi is either completely mahogany or mahogany with a maple veneer. That makes a big tonal difference. The Gibson will be brighter and have more sustain. A lot of Gibsons are chambered so they're more resonant. Some bands like My Chemical Romance and Hawthorne Heights prefer Epis over Gibson because of their darker nature. But don't get an Epi expecting to make it sound like a Gibson with a pickup change. It won't ever happen.
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