I buy/sell/trade guitars as a hobby. Recently i decided i kinda missed
playing a les paul. So i traded for a 2008 les paul plus top epiphone
model. A few days later somebody had a nicer one on craigslist that i
could not pass on for the price. It was basically NOS new old stock,
he bought it and left it in a deluxe skg case and never played it. The
guitar was immaculate and i got it and the case for 300$ with a new
strap that had'nt even had the price tag taken off it.

My 2008 les paul had a few dents and nicks in it so i thought this new
one would be better and that it would soley be a cosmetic thing. The
2008 is a vintage honey burst. The one i bought today is a 2006
Anyways the surprise to me is that they were completely different
guitars sonically and physically. The 2006 was heavier and to make
sure i was'nt imaging it i weighed them both on a scale a few times to
make sure. The 2006 is 1.8 pounds heavier. The two necks look similar
but whent i went back and forth back and forth i noticed the 2006 is
definitely somehow a bigger instrument, whether it is longer or wider
or thicker it is hard to say they look super similar but feel
different. So i had to audition them to see which one i would keep and
which one i would sell or trade.

2008 sounds more condensed and tighter and more snarling and mean. It
has a vintage punchier kinda sound. Kinda more along hte lines of the
kinks or the beatles. Both sound a tad muddy which is pretty normal for epi pickups.

2006 Completely different animal. This guitar has a soundstage that
sounds wider, bigger, more open and less compressed. Like it is in 3D
and the 2008 is in 2D. *More along hte lines of journey, scorpions,
bon jovi , sorta a big arena rock kinda sound. It has about 25% less
disortion but at the same time seems to have a much bigger prescence
and output.

If i could combine the good traits of both it would be an awesome
sound, soon i will change pickups that hopefully will blow them both
away. Ultimately i decided to keep the 2006 i, sound preference aside
there seems to be something cheap about hte 2008 that i cannot put my
finger on.
Do you think epiphones les paul standards are getting worse and
cheaper each year? When was the best era? They actually cut almost 2
pounds of weight on their guitars from 2006-2008. And i think the
pickups must be different to. Their specifications do not seem to be the same.
sell both epi's you should come close and pick up a Gibson, don't waste time and money upgrading electronics on a pair of Epis.

the heavier the LP has the lower quality wood from my understanding to a certain degree. everything is a factor.

i have no knowledge of change to anything major during those years, unless they weight relieved one of them, which to be honest i don't even know if epiphone weight relieves guitars at all.

you can get non faded gibson LP studios for $700. not that hard to find.

You've played two guitars, made two years apart.

You should come to exactly zero conclusions about what that means in terms of Epi build quality over the years. Epis have actually gotten considerably better in the last 5 years or so. They started using much, much nicer hardware, they fixed some electronics problems, and the quality is as good as it's ever been.

If you really trade guitars as a hobby, you should know better than to come to conclusions about "dropping quality" in a line of guitars after playing two. There's just so much variation, especially on the cheaper instruments, that two guitars made even in the same year will often feel and sound completely different.
I believe they vary A LOT. Remember, they may not even have been made in the same factory. Does the serial number start with the same letters?

You can't draw any conclusions of declining quality from 2, or even 5 guitars.
"Your signature can not be longer than 250 characters."

How you know you have too many guitars...

Apparently once also known as PonyFan #834553.
no the serial is 06 and 08 as the first two letters. That denotes the year of manufacture. For me i am happy with the 06. It sounds and looks like a better instrument and it is not a varying from guitar to guitar thing. If you compare a bunch of 2009's they are the same guitar you don't 1.8lbs of material from batch to batch anyone who thinks that is stupid and does not have the experience of looking at the two different year models side by side like i do. The point was the guitar changed somewhere within one of those years and i wondered if anyone had the inside story about it. First of all Gibson was being investigated for illegal trade practices, they have not been found guilty but the reason for this was there are shortages of mahogany and rosewood which i think they get from india, wood has to be sustainable. You cannot destroy forrests to sell materials to guitar makers so alot of suppliers raised their prices due to the shortages and other suppliers such as ones from china where these guitars are made are black market suppliers. Gibson is innocent. However the standard lp was always a heavy guitar i do not beleive cutting almost 2 lbs of wood from it was in it's best interest, i think it was cost cutting measure because this is their best selling guitar their most consumer heavey guitar. The studio, the special, and various 60's tribute models are lighter lp's, The standard plus top from both gibson and epiphone was always very heavy. From 2008 up the epi has been relieved of almost 2 pounds of weight.
Everyone knows that Epiphone Les Pauls are not Gibson Les Paul. So if you want a Les Paul, I would have save the money and buy a real one down the road. They may look the same, but in terms of sound, there is just no comparison. If you dream of a Les Paul, an Epiphone will not satisfy you, it just makes you want the real thing more....just my personal opinion.
With that being said, Epiphone had come a long way and their quality isn't bad at all, for that price range. You can play two guitars from the same year and they both might sound different, especially for Epiphone. I agreed with the posters above that you can't really compare 2006 to 2008.
I really think you should be patient, save some more money, sell both Epiphone to get enough and buy a real thing. You won't regret it. It will be your partner for life.
Not bad advice sonny rocker. Keep in mind though i scored this with an skb case in brand new condition for 300$, and i do know that the weak link in epi's is their pickups. So for another 150$ i could have dimarizio paf style pickups or seymour duncans then it would sound even better. That totals one fifth of the cost of a gibson. I have played gibson Lp's i know they are the best. To my ears the 800-1000$ dollar gibsons like the studio faded do not sound good at all. the 1000$ lp special sounds good, the studio tribute for 1399 sounded good. And then you have the standards at 2300$ and up. I would buy the special eventually ( with the p-90's) because that is a different sound and very cool guitar. But for a les paul standard plus top, financially i think this epi will do. The improvement with hand picked pickups will make it a nice guitar for less than 500$.
No doubt, while Gibson LPs are better and they are the real thing, they do cost an arm and a leg. I bought my 89' LP Custom back in early 90s (paid $850 for it, used. LOL) and price had skyrocketed like crazy since. We can only buy what we can afford, and I agreed, if you are satisfy with it for the money you pay, then it is good. The only person should be happy is you.
I am just saying that, if you still not happy with it...keep your eyes open for Les Paul deals on craigs list. If you have the cash, you can easily talk someone down several hundreds if you flash cash in their faces. That is what I did and that is how I only paid $850 for mine. Of course, you can't buy one at that price anymore, no matter what.
quick question for anyone reading this, i am playing the heavy 06 and the lighter 08 back and forth here now. Weighing the pro's and cons. The selling point on the 06 to me is it has more sustain. It really holds a note and it verberates for a long time. The lighter 08 model is a tigher crisper attack but the note leaves quicker it does not sustain as well.

The 08 i admit is a little more playable on the neck, the body of course is lighter but the neck feels more like an easy going toy in the hands easy to operate. The 06 at first felt more like a big beast that i had to get a rein on. The more i play it the more i adapt to it and start to think the playability is not a huge issue they are just different and take getting used to.

On the sustain, the added sustain i hear on the 06 is that from having a heavier body and bigger neck or is it from the pickups? They both have stock epiphone pickups. Because i am gonna change pickups anyway. But sustain has always been a mystery to me. Whether it comes from the totality of the guitar itself, woods, hardware, tension setting, ect. Or if it comes from the pickup.

From my research i beleive the lighter weight in part comes from "swiss cheese" weight relief holes in the body. It is not chambered which are super light.
Sustain comes from various parts of the guitar. There is no one answer. Some people think that floating bridge will lead to the lost of sustain. arch top has more sustain. The wood, yes, definitely a huge difference. Pickups too. Some people believe that pickups mounted to the wood has more sustain, hence, the new EVH Wolfgang with wood mounted pickup and a Floyd D-Tuna sits flush to the body. Of course, the choise of pickups too. I would just pick the one which has better sustain, and change the pickup and see if it gets even better.