#1
I'm considering an explorer for my next guitar. I don't really know too much about gibson or epiphone (other than eoiphone is like the budget for gibson) and the sole reason for me considering these guitars is purely asthetics. I just like the way it looks. I was wondering if anyone has tried these guys and could point me in the right direction.

As strange as this may sound, I would prefer not to get an ESP/LTD Explorer shape. I'm not 100% opposed to the idea but I like the softer edges on the epi's and gibsons.

I suppose this is one of those "what kind of guitar" threads so I'll lay down the basics:

1). What do I want to buy?
Well, I think an Epiphone Explorer. Gibson is probably too expensive.

2). What is my Budget?
I don't think I would want to go much higher that $500-$600 USD. I don't think I'l be making a decision very soon though so I'll have time to scape up more money if I really have to. But let's try and keep it around there. The less the better.

3). What type of music do you want to play?
Mostly metal. This guitar will be geared towards Rythm and Riffage. (think Amon Amarth.) I also like Lamb of god, pantera, Metallica, tool, and stuff like that.

4). What gear do I currently have?
A peavey 5150 combo and a Schecter damien fr. I think I have cables, picks, and a wah somewhere too.

5). It would be helpful to tell us your playing ability or skill level.
I'm not technical but I've been told I'm alright for someone who is self taught.. I'm always interested in learning new things but this is mostly just a hobby for me and I like playing what I like listening to (usually in my bedroom or in a garage with buddies).

6). Am I willing to buy used?
Hell Yes.

7). Special Info? (this is my own section)
From what I've read some pickups that come in explorers are muddy sounding with lots of distortion. Regardless, I will probably end up swapping the stock pups for Bareknuckles or some other passive high gain pickup. If anyone has suggestions, I would absolutelly love to hear them.


Well, I understand this is quite a bit to read but I appreciate any time you all take to answer these questions and bring some clarity here. If there is something I should elaborate on or you need anymore information please let me know and I'll do my best to comply. Thank you!
#3
You should probably save up and get a LTD James hetfield snakebyte.
Those guitars are wicked and great for the bands you put up, they have EMG's which are BEAST pickups! and has all the right specs to suit your needs
#4
Yeah IMVHO explorers are about as metal-oriented as you can get.The Epiphone prophecy series has something called the futura.If you get that you probably won't have to change pups because it comes with EMGs but that's personal preference
#5
Quote by AlterBridger
Yeah IMVHO explorers are about as metal-oriented as you can get.The Epiphone prophecy series has something called the futura.If you get that you probably won't have to change pups because it comes with EMGs but that's personal preference


Yeah well, there's also the 1984 reissue Epi Explorer that has EMGs in it, comes with ebony and white finish. On top of that, it looks like an actual explorer, instead of something else. I think it's a great guitar for the price, I'd definitely want to try out one.

http://www.epiphone.com/Products/Designer/1984-Explorer-EX.aspx

However, I see you have a Peavey 5150 combo... Are you sure you can't save up a bit more so that you'd do the Peavey a bit more justice? Nah, the Epi's fine, but Gibson version of the guitar is always better, no matter what they say. You can always get lucky when going used, like on craigslist and the like if you're in the USA.

Saying that the pups are muddy.. Well, maybe in the Epi version of the original explorer, but definitely not on the Gibson one. Actually, Amon Amarth guitarists use pretty much stock Explorers and you mentioned that you'd like to achieve their sound.
Gear pics

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Last edited by Sakke at Mar 17, 2012,
#6
Just to hammer it home further - yes Explorers are awesome for metal.

I dunno if it's helpful to you but you might want to look into some other explorer-shaped models (apart from the pointy ESP one) like the Agile Ghost
http://www.rondomusic.com/ghost;pro6blk.html

Or the Ibanez Destroyer

(It's a very fat, heavy guitar and comes stock with high powered DiMarzio D'Activator Xs)

There would be others too but I'm having a mental blank.

Otherwise yeah the Epi Explorers are cool to and would be very well suited to what you want with an appropriate pickup swap.
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#7
Quote by Sakke
Yeah well, there's also the 1984 reissue Epi Explorer that has EMGs in it, comes with ebony and white finish. On top of that, it looks like an actual explorer, instead of something else. I think it's a great guitar for the price, I'd definitely want to try out one.

http://www.epiphone.com/Products/Designer/1984-Explorer-EX.aspx

However, I see you have a Peavey 5150 combo... Are you sure you can't save up a bit more so that you'd do the Peavey a bit more justice? Nah, the Epi's fine, but Gibson version of the guitar is always better, no matter what they say. You can always get lucky when going used, like on craigslist and the like if you're in the USA.

Saying that the pups are muddy.. Well, maybe in the Epi version of the original explorer, but definitely not on the Gibson one. Actually, Amon Amarth guitarists use pretty much stock Explorers and you mentioned that you'd like to achieve their sound.


That white epi explorer looks beast. But I agree with this. Gibson will always be better. The whiny bitches on YouTube who say otherwise are just trying to justify not getting a gobs on cos they can't afford one. But anyway, the Epiphone is still a great guitar and there are EMGs so the worse quality of wood won't make much of a difference. I've always been a fan of passive pickups rather than active pickups because they sound more natural and dynamic but on cheaper guitars with wore wood EMGSs are certainly the way to go in comparison to mixing crappy and muddy passive pickups with bad wood.
#8
Buy the epiphone Prophecy Futura. It's a explorer with EMG pick ups and it's only about 500/600$ i think. I also have it. It has 24 frets. And there are 2 versions. The EX (without a Floyd Rose) and the FX (with a Floyd Rose). I advise you not to buy a white explorer because you will look like a Hetfield wannabe.

#9
Buy the epiphone Prophecy Futura. It's a explorer with EMG pick ups and it's only about 500/600$ i think. I also have it. It has 24 frets. And there are 2 versions. The EX (without a Floyd Rose) and the FX (with a Floyd Rose)..


I said the same
#10
Quote by holywins183
Buy the epiphone Prophecy Futura. It's a explorer with EMG pick ups and it's only about 500/600$ i think. I also have it. It has 24 frets. And there are 2 versions. The EX (without a Floyd Rose) and the FX (with a Floyd Rose). I advise you not to buy a white explorer because you will look like a Hetfield wannabe.



What the **** is that about not buying a white explorer? That's like saying don't buy a white les Paul cos you'll look like a randy rhoads wannabe or don't buy a gold top or tobacco burst or any other color cos you'll look like a slash wannabe.

Anyway, that Epiphone prophecy is ugly as shit and it doesn't even look like an explorer. The 1984 reissue has really similar specs (the only difference is less frets and no Floyd rose) and it looks 10x better.
#11
Woah, massive pic...

I can't say I'm too keen on the futura. It looks kindof....thin? Maybe it's just the finish on this one.
Same with the agile ghost. The body is skewed and doesn't look as full.

The Ibanez destroyer is now a contender, but I'm going to have to play it first.

I also quickly rowsed the local craigslist (I am in the states, Los angeles area) and found a gibson nearby for 1k obo. I could probably save up for something like that in a month or so.
It's a 2005 model. Should I be aware of any particular year or model of these guys? Like is there a year where the quality control was a bit wonky or anything like that?
#12
They suck on solo though, they are good for rhtym. But really, it is not a really good shape. But if you really want, then I'd recommend you a simple finish or either natural finish, with passive pickpups so on scene you can look more aesthetic and have a more flexible guitar.
#13
Quote by Sakke
Yeah well, there's also the 1984 reissue Epi Explorer that has EMGs in it, comes with ebony and white finish. On top of that, it looks like an actual explorer, instead of something else. I think it's a great guitar for the price, I'd definitely want to try out one.


This +100000000000
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#14
Dude, get an old Ibanez Destroyer!

Super fun guitars!
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#15
Quote by cemges
They suck on solo though, they are good for rhtym. But really, it is not a really good shape. But if you really want, then I'd recommend you a simple finish or either natural finish, with passive pickpups so on scene you can look more aesthetic and have a more flexible guitar.



More bullshit. Why do you think that they suck for soloing? Cos they look like rythm guitars. It's all about the neck and they have great necks.
#16
Phil Collen used a Destroyer,Randy Rhodes used a Gibson Explorer,Paul Gilbert used a Destroyer.......
I think you get the picture. You can do just about anything on an Explorer style guitar.
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#18
I really don't like either. I own a Gibson Explorer, and I don't touch it very much. For me, the mahogany and 24.75 inch scale just doesn't do it. It's an excellent guitar, but I much prefer my Jacksons with alder/mahogany and a maple top for balance as well as the 25.5 inch scale. That's my preference, and I play a lot melodic metal.
#19
Quote by Robbgnarly
Phil Collen used a Destroyer,Randy Rhodes used a Gibson Explorer,Paul Gilbert used a Destroyer.......
I think you get the picture. You can do just about anything on an Explorer style guitar.

Randy Rhoads used an Explorer? When? I wanna see pics or an article where he talks about it. In 30+ years of being a RR fan I have never seen him with an Explorer. I have seen him with a tabacco burst Strat before though.....

EDIT*** And as for the topic, alot of people have used Explorers for metal and someday I hope to have on in my collection. And it'll be a Gibson......
My Gear:

Jackson RR3 Pro
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Gibson Les Paul Standard
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Marshall MA100

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Last edited by OldRhoadsFan at Mar 17, 2012,
#20
My vote is the Epi 84 reissue loaded w/the 81/85. That's one sexy guitar.
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#21
Quote by OldRhoadsFan
Randy Rhoads used an Explorer? When? I wanna see pics or an article where he talks about it. In 30+ years of being a RR fan I have never seen him with an Explorer. I have seen him with a tabacco burst Strat before though.....

EDIT*** And as for the topic, alot of people have used Explorers for metal and someday I hope to have on in my collection. And it'll be a Gibson......

I was sure he used one in QR, but I could be wrong
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#22
Quote by Robbgnarly
I was sure he used one in QR, but I could be wrong


He did play a Dean V that I have seen a pic of but mostly used his Les Paul with QR in most pics I have seen.
My Gear:

Jackson RR3 Pro
Epiphone Les Paul Standard
Gibson Les Paul Standard
Fender CD140 Acoustic/Electric
Line 5 HD500 effects unit
Marshall MA100

"Grunge was invented for people who can't play solos"
#23
So it seems like the best choices are Epiphone 84' reissue or save up for a gibson.
#24
I would recommend saving up for the Gibson and being in the LA area finding a used one should be no problem. It'll hold it's value better than what other people mentioned and they play great.
#26
A bit pointy for me. Same vein as the ESP/LTD versions. Not absolutely out of the question but definitely not my first choice.
#28
i second the jackson kelly. sick guitars, and a nice twist on the explorer shape
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#29
I'll voice my opinion based on playing the 84 explorer and owning a Futura.

The Futura is a much better playing guitar. Feels nicer to play. The 84's neck is very sticky and feels very cheap overall.

The best thing you can do imho is get a used Gibson.
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#31
I have an epiphone 58 explorer and i think they're awesome, but i would recommend switch of pickups if you want to do metal....However, they are NOT suited for lead guitar IMO.
#32
Well I suck at lead (I'm not a technical player, more of a riffer) so I'm not worried about that.
I don't have the money right now so I can't bid . I'm selling some gear and saving up from work so this is a guitar I will probably get in a month or two. Hopefully.
From what it sounds like it would be much better to just buy a gibson used. Spend a little more to get a good quality piece of gear might be the better idea.
#33
i got a used ltd ex-400 for $300 used. do it.
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#34
Hmmm I like point and odd shapes. I have my eye on Charvels new Desolation line. They have one called the Star more or less an Explorer shape and I like the Blue smear color.

The Star DST-1st list at $866.65 but my dudes have it priced at around $690. Which is a damn good price for a neckthru,and it has locking tuners and EMGs. And I dont like EMGs so I would swap those out.
They do also have a cheaper bolt on neck version DST-3FR1h that lists at $666.65(i dig the 666 but you could most likely get it for $4-500.

Funny thing was is I was gonna buy a Desolation soloist, but I went in today to play it and it was gone already. So I tried out the star ....glad I did because its friggen sweet and I have too many strat shapes again since I sold my V and Warbeast.

As far as no good for leads, thats bs. I know a few guys who do smokin leads on them.
What the hell!!!
Last edited by danvwman at Mar 18, 2012,