#5
If you want a custom shop then look into ESP, Jackson, Bernie Rico Jr, RAN, KXK, Halo guitars etc.

I'd advise just buying a stock guitar and customizing it for your needs unless it's something very specific.
Quest for "the tone": pending.
#6
lol, no don't try Gibson. What you should really do is go to Warmoth (I think that's how it's spelled, I'm having a brain fart here). you can get EVERYTHING, Hardware, Electrics, WOOD, NECK, everything!
Current Rig:
Gibson Firebird Studio
Limited Edition Schecter 35th Anniversary C-1
Schecter Jeff Loomis Signature 7 FR
Ashdown Fallen Angel
Custom 7 Firebird from Ignition Custom Guitars (check them out)
ESP Phoenix