Hello guys,

I would like some opinions on a matter that concerns me. On January I bought an Epi LP Tribute Plus Ebony outfit (Gibson '57s pickups). I am satisfied with the guitar in general. Recently I spotted an ad for a used Gibson LP Studio Wine Red '08 in a very very good condition, related to the guitar's "age". I am tempted to buy this guitar! The thing is that I prefer my '57s over the pickups Studio wears, so if I buy the Studio I will do this modification, I mean I will remove the 57s from my Epi and install it on the Gib, along with the pots and I have already found a buyer for the guitar without the pickups. Additionally I m going to sell the pickups that the Studio already wears.

I am playing mostly HeavyRock/Metal/Post Metal/Sludge/Post Rock kind of music.

I would like some opinions on that modification and choice. Is it worth? Are the woods or the rest of the hw of the Gib so much better that would worth having an older guitar over a 6-month guitar? All in all, better a 9 year old Gib LP Studio with Gib 57's or a 6-month old Epi LP Tribute with Gib 57s?    

If it were me I'd stick with the Epiphone. You really have no idea what kind of issues you're buying with the used Gibson. You can be buying some significant additional expense and headachery (yeah, I know, it's not a real word) if the frets aren't level, etc. The hardware is unlikely to be "better" than what he Epiphone is wearing already, nor are the woods better.

What you're buying in that exchange is largely the headstock logo. If that floats your boat, go ahead.
I would question why you are doing this? Where is the improvement. I personally own two Epiphone Tribute guitars and wouldn't change them for a Gibson Studio. Nothing wrong with the Studio some are very nice and some are just OK. I have played a few in Guitar Center and I found one that I almost bought but at the same time I played two others that I didn't like (the set up was awful to start with). You already know the hardware (57 Classic, CTS pots etc.) is better on the Tribute. The finishes are nicer (to me anyway) and I really prefer the neck profile of the Tribute but that's all totally subjective. Make sure aren't buying the Studio to have a more impressive name on the headstock. I get that. I owned a 1973 Gibson Les Paul Standard for 30 years even though I preferred to play my 1976 Ibanez Les Paul copy more and I usually brought both to gigs. At the gigs I mostly played the Ibanez with the Gibson sitting on a stand looking impressive as my backup and eye candy. I am as guilty as anybody of "headstock envy" but I am getting over it finally. Maybe there is a pill for that.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
Last edited by Rickholly74 at Jun 9, 2017,
If you're satisfied with your guitar and it already has better pickups, I'd keep it, especially if you can't play this Studio before you buy it. I've played some Studio/Faded/lower-end Gibsons that did not play or feel with their price tag. I've played some nicer ones too, but I just feel like the reputation of that part of the Gibson line is too shaky to make a blind purchase.

To me, this deal is a risky proposition that probably ends up for the most part a "lateral move".
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Keep the Epi!
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Like others have said keep the Epi. Sounds like you are only wanting to change for the name on the headstock (I could be wrong here). Epi is churning out some very nice guitars and I would think that going from a Tribute to a Studio would be a step sideways, unless the Studio plays better and has a better feel than the Epi.
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Tough call. On the one hand the Epi' has sweet, stock spec's,  on the other maybe a Gibson with nitro finish is what you crave.

What's the deal breakdown? How much is the studio and how much are you getting for the Epi' minus the the pup and harness?
Honestly if I were you OP, I'd keep the Tribute. A lot of people might think 'Oh a Gibson is automatically going to be better! It costs more! It says Gibson!' but with lower end Gibsons, personally I've found that not to be the case. Both guitars are mahogany bodies with maple tops (the tributes have a solid maple cap as well) but the way I see it, the Tribute has really nice pickups already, great tuners and hardware, has a long neck tenon (something the studios don't have) and basically has all the upgrades you would make to an LP but at a fraction of the price.

IMO going from a Tribute to a Studio is more of a side-grade if anything and depending on the features and looks you like, studios might be a bit too sparse. So yeah, you like the Tribute, I would keep it. 
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Keep the Epi if you're not a gambling man. The low-end Gibsons like the studio you're looking at are a quality control minefield. Some Gibson studios are built and play like absolute garbage. The fact that it plays like garbage could be the real reason the guy is selling it.

In my experience you pay a lot more money for the name with Gibson than with other brands. But if having a name on the headstock is where your priorities lie, then go right ahead.

If you think the nitro finish is better because it's applied thinner, which helps the guitar to resonate, then you're falling for a very popularly held myth. Nitro finishes are in no way applied thinner than poly finishes. A poly finish can be applied just as thin, if not thinner than nitro. It's not the finish that's important, it's how well the finish is applied. And Gibson are infamous for being an absolute joke when it comes to executing a quality finish at any rate of consistency. And this is coming from someone who owns a Gibson.

Also the thing about the wood being better is also a myth because Gibson has mentioned explicitly (during the federal raids scandals) that the supplier that they use to source their wood is exactly the same as what is used by many other competing companies. So there's no magical pixie dust voodoo that Gibson sprinkles onto the guitar to make the wood better than what you can find on other guitars in a similar price range.
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