so ive got a tele, and i play mostly alternative and some classic rock, and i want something stronger thgan tele single-coils. is an epiphone firebird a good bet for a guy with a limited (below 500) budget?
It's not bad, but beware, the firebird is one of the most hated shapes among guitarist (and this coming from a guy that owns the Gibson version). I suggest you play one first to see if you even like it. From personal experience, the Epi's are very body heavy (aka the body sinks, causing the neck angle with your body to be very low). However, they are decent guitars and should handle what you play no problem.
I really like them. I played one and really enjoyed it, whether it's hated or not.