#1
Hello, I recently saw a 1980 gibson les paul standard at local craiglist, for $1200, it looks ok, and from what I have heard form soundclips, it sounds great as well. But, could anyone please post some informations, on quality of these guitars ? I heard Gibson encountered a massive quality drop around that age, is that true ?
#2
I thought it was Fender that sucked in the 80's and Gibson were at their peak?
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#3
^ this. also gibsons lowest quality is now, the 08/09 gibsons are awful compared to what they were in the 80s, late 80/90s gibson was at its peak, but even early 80s was better than now,
before they were checked over really well, and after all the assembly line, machine cutting parts, trained luthiers fretted it, and fitted all the electronics ect, and ti was done to a really high quality, then checked over meticulously and played buy QC but gibson has practically no GC nowadays and the guitars are put together by factory workers.
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#4
Like a lot of companies, Gibson went through some changes in the Late 1970s and early 1980s. Norlin practically ran Gibson into the ground in the mid to late 1970s. A number of very talented people left Gibson during these down years. Gibson's Les Pauls improved in quality throughout the 1980s, but in 1980 they were still reeling from mismanagement and not listening to musicians.

Despite this, they managed to produce a number of fine instruments. The 1979 25/50 Anniversary Les Pauls were very nice guitars, and the 1980 Heritage Series Les Pauls were especially good looking and playing instruments. Some of them even had figured maple tops - a rarity in those days. I remember lusting after a 1980 Heritage Custom back then. No Les Paul Standard made in the late 1970s or early 1980s is likely to have a nicely figured maple top, but that won't affect the sound or playability.

There are plenty of people who own and adore their 1970s and 1980s Gibson Les Pauls. Your 1980 Les Paul Standard might be a fine guitar. It is difficult to tell without seeing it.
#5
It's not worth buying an old Gibson, unless it's 50s/60s. Modern day Gibsons are actually fine if you bother to try out the guitar you're buying. People do rather love to bandwagon.
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#6
I've played a lot of Gibsons since the sixties and they have always varied a lot from one to another. We cherish the old ones because when they were good they were really good. But we tend to forget about the three we put back on the rack in the shop. With internet buying and 'box shifter' stores who can't set a guitar up, it is no wonder so many seem to be sub standard for the asking price. My local store always has a few Gibsons in, among all the Epiphones, and they are the ones the owner sets up, whilst he sells the Epis just as they come from the factory. Not every store even bothers to do that.
So go and try this 1980 model and see what you think. Try others to get the feel of what they usually are like and you'll have a bencjmatk to compare it with.
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#7
I have a 1990 Les Paul Custom and it feels better made then my 04 Les Paul Classic.But its the heaviest guitar I've ever owned.
#8
Les pauls from the '70s and early '80s generally have a pretty bad rep. Of course rep doesn't really say much about individual guitars. Just keep that in mind. The only problem I've ever really had with a lot of those guitars is that they just don't sound very good. They're too heavy, too dark, too muddy and not resonant enough. They have their own sound.
#10
Quote by marantz1300
A lot of the music made in the 70s and 80s was made on supposedly crap guitars.
And most of the celebrated les paul sounds were made on guitars built in the '50s.
#12
Quote by consecutive e
I thought it was Fender that sucked in the 80's and Gibson were at their peak?


No, Gibson also sucked in the 80's. Most of the 80's Gibsons I've tried have honestly been awful. Gibsons peak was in the 90's.
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#13
It's called a Norlin, the 80's were like today some good and some bad. Norlin Era Les Pauls tended to have larger headstocks, a different neck volute, a maple neck, a 3 piece maple top, and a two piece mahogany body with the two pieces stacked on top of each other (called pancaking). You may love the guitar alot, some people really love their Norlins, if you have more questions I found that mylespaulforum is a great place for questions.
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#14
Alot of Norlin era's are pretty bad, I played 5 (looked at 6) and one had no sustain, another I was too scared to play because of a huge headstock crack, the other had a god awful fret job, the next had muddy pickups, one person "customized" there's I won't even comment on it because it was so horrible, and the last was pretty good not worth $1,200 though
#15
I've always thought the anti-Henry Juszkiewicz thing on this site was hilarious considering he's the guy who saved Gibson from Norlin.
#16
Quote by bananahammock
^ this. also gibsons lowest quality is now, the 08/09 gibsons are awful compared to what they were in the 80s, late 80/90s gibson was at its peak, but even early 80s was better than now,
before they were checked over really well, and after all the assembly line, machine cutting parts, trained luthiers fretted it, and fitted all the electronics ect, and ti was done to a really high quality, then checked over meticulously and played buy QC but gibson has practically no GC nowadays and the guitars are put together by factory workers.


I'm sorry man but that's just not true. It's an internet exaggeration. Same as the Marshall MG, Line 6 Spider-series, Boss DS-1, etc. etc. etc.

When a larger-than-life company makes a not-so-great product, it takes the internet about 6 weeks to catch on and completely destroy the reputation of said product forever. Well, Gibson has experienced a VERY SLIGHT dip in quality control RECENTLY, and the internet guitar-playing community has gone nuts about it. Apparently, now all Gibsons suck. But in reality, the quality of the guitars coming into your local guitar shops isn't any lower than it was 5 years ago.

The prime example of internet exaggeration is the Marshall MG4. It's just as good an amp as the Roland Cube and Peavey Vypyr. However, there's plenty of kids all over these boards who "played one and it sounded horrible, MGs suck!!" The MG4 is completely different than the MG3; yet, the logo stamped on the front will prevent the amp from ever gaining the reccomendation status achieved by the Vypur or Cube.
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#17
Quote by philipp122
I'm sorry man but that's just not true. It's an internet exaggeration. Same as the Marshall MG, Line 6 Spider-series, Boss DS-1, etc. etc. etc.

When a larger-than-life company makes a not-so-great product, it takes the internet about 6 weeks to catch on and completely destroy the reputation of said product forever. Well, Gibson has experienced a VERY SLIGHT dip in quality control RECENTLY, and the internet guitar-playing community has gone nuts about it. Apparently, now all Gibsons suck. But in reality, the quality of the guitars coming into your local guitar shops isn't any lower than it was 5 years ago.

The prime example of internet exaggeration is the Marshall MG4. It's just as good an amp as the Roland Cube and Peavey Vypyr. However, there's plenty of kids all over these boards who "played one and it sounded horrible, MGs suck!!" The MG4 is completely different than the MG3; yet, the logo stamped on the front will prevent the amp from ever gaining the reccomendation status achieved by the Vypur or Cube.

You are wise, and I will agree that I do not know where the "Gibsons" QC has dropped to an all time low. I doubt most of these kids have ever played a Gibson, and if they had played one, it was most likely an abused floor model. And if thats the case that you can tell a guitar sucks by the ones at Guitar Center then I have come to the conclusion that Fender makes ****ty guitars, PRS's come out of the factory with knobs missing and scratches, and ESP's come in with dents.
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#18
Quote by Kurapica
It's not worth buying an old Gibson, unless it's 50s/60s. Modern day Gibsons are actually fine if you bother to try out the guitar you're buying. People do rather love to bandwagon.


Don't get just any LP Standard if you're going to buy one. I see them selling them for $2,300 now at Guitar Center and they have crappy finishes and even feel cheap.

I got a Gibson LP Premium Plus and it's great. It's solid and it sounds like balls out tone. I haven't had one guitarist not compliment how much they love the flame and how well it plays.

I would say spend the extra $300 or so and get one of the Custom Shop LPs like the '58 reissue or the goldtop. They are always better than typical standards. I was sad when they stopped making the old Custom shop Slash signature and and started making the new one. It feels like an Epiphone. You're paying for the name on that one.

Just try it out before you buy it.
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#19
The problem is you need to get it in your hands, inspect and try it out. Gibsons have their good and bad no matter what year they were made. You have to realize it's an 80s Gibson unless the owner kept it in pristine condition there probably will be some signs of wear and tear. First, Check the serial number out to make sure it is what it's supposed to be.

Make sure it has it's original hardware and pick ups. Too many times I have checked out guitars that had been upgraded with aftermarket parts and people wanted top dollar for a guitar that was not original. A smart guitarist will keep the original parts if he wants to get his moneys worth. It keeps the value that way. I have played some flawless 80s era Gibbys but I have seen my share of dogs. Not every Norlin era Gibson was bad. Gibson has had it's ups and downs over the years a lot of manufactures do especially when they change ownership. It's very hard to say whether you should buy it or not a guitar is something you really need to get a hands on experience with.

If you do get to see it in hand look for cracks on the neck, headstock and neck joint. Nitro finishes check (the finish cracks) some Gibbys really check some not so much. Those are not structural and common nothing to get upset about. Check the neck to see how it looks and is nice and straight. Some people will try and hide a neck problem by raising the action. If the action is high give the neck a real good once over. I carry a tool they use to check the fret levels to see if the frets are level. Depending on how much it was used the frets will show wear if they are worn too much you might want to see if you can get the price down. A fret job isn't cheap. Plug it in and turn the knobs and listen for static/scratch open the cavity cover and see if there has been any solder work done. Look at the wires to see if they are original. A lot of people won't let you pull the pups sometimes that is the only way to see if the pups were replaced. Make sure the tuners are good and original tuners tend to get replaced a lot on older guitars.


John