AJ-100 review by Epiphone

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  • Sound: 9
  • Overall Impression: 9
  • Reliability & Durability: 9
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.2 (56 votes)
Epiphone: AJ-100
4

Price paid: A$ 190

Purchased from: New Zealand Rockshop

Sound — 9
I play very different genres of music and this guitar is purely amzing when it comes to playing any sort of mellow song or accoustic on. Accoustic guitars have never been really good at doing fancy sound work eg. Pinch harmonics, tapping et... thats for the electric guitar, but just the plain old stumming and picking. I use this guitar with D'Addario EJ11 strings. The light gauge and bright sound add another dimension to this stunning guitar.

Overall Impression — 9
If this guitar was stolen or lost I would most certainly buy another one, it fit's how I play and what I play really well so I don't see point in buying a guitar that I wouldn't be certain about. I've been playing for nearly three years now and this was my first guitar, I own a Squier Strat SE100 pack with about 6 pedals and a Marshall MG50DFX and I am most pleased with the accoustic sound I get from my AJ100. There was lots of comparing guitars from Aria through Ashton to Gibson and Taylor and I didn't like any of them compared to the Epiphone. There's nothing else I wish I hadve asked on purchase, Great guitar all round.

Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar has taken hard knocks and keeps on playing, its withstood several Live performances and I would happily use it again in any situation without a back up. The Strap buttons are really good and strong and the finish is really good apart from some wear around the sound hole but other than that the finish is fine.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
The guitar was fairly good from factory, the only flaws I found were 2 of the tuners were REALLY tight to turn and made me think my strings were going to break most of the time and the action was a litlle low and most strings buzzed quite badly no matter the gauge but lighter strings don't buzz anywhere near as bad or as often. Apart from that there wasn't anything that was poorly assembled or finished.

Features — 9
This beautiful dreadnought style guitar has a mahogany body with rosewood fret board, with an ebony hard top finish. It has 20 frets which are generously spaced on a Tune-O-Matic style bridge. It was made in china and I am completely stumped what year it was made. The tuners are non locking and I wouldn't have a clue as to what brand they are but everything on the guitar is still factory standard and it didn't come with any form of electronics or accessories. All the extars had to be purchased seperately.

20 comments sorted by best / new / date

    busted_hater
    Ok, I own Epiphones, Squires, and a Takamine (my fave), but I know that when it comes to quality, you can't compare an Epiphone to a Gibson or a Taylor.
    WRONG! The consistency of quality from gibson is shocking! I have an Epiphone Les Paul Standard it is hands down better than any modern Gibson Les Paul. It is simply down to the fact i had it professionally set up. I don't mean your local store set up i mean a proper one. Done by a guy who is part of the guild of master craftsmen. It plays better than any Gibson les paul, standard, custom or whatever! The sounds is incredible too! It is not quite Gibson pick up sound. But i could replace both for about 80 each. So to some up 250 Epiphone (second hand) + 85 set up + 2 GIbson Pickups 160 = 495! Thats a lot cheaper than any Gibson! Plus better as i said plays better easily! Sounds as good! Why would you want a gibson? DO NOT BE FOOLED BY BRAND!
    Duncas
    trick here is to buy from shop after trying it out, you can avoid problems like bad action or finish/condition by looking at it yourself.
    kevlarmusicmojo
    i find epiphones to feel and sound cheap. gibsons are nice but overpriced if you ask me. i'm more into fenders for electrics and found a nice walden acoustic for only $250 at a local music shop. never heard of them before but it sounds really nice.
    xDeathxMetalx
    Ok, i agree that some guitars lack qualities of other guitars. but ive never had problems with Epiphones; my first guitar was an Epiphone Special II and i still have it in perfect condition and it still plays the same. It doesnt matter about the guitar honestly, it depends on the guitarist, if your a shitty guitar player then obviously its gonna sound like shit, a great guitarist can make any guitar sound good. I Think this guitar is great for its price, i would buy it no doubt.
    sk8blind4life8
    ya i no my first guitar was some shit brand called rocker but surprisingly sounds so much better than my friends 800 dollar fender and i got a new epiphone les paul standard the other day replaced the pick ups and sound like gibson les paul now
    Oosh.
    Not a fan of the shape, i think its a bit rounder but less curvy than a traditional dreadnought, it's just me though.
    sparkeyjames
    Inexpensive guitars of this caliber may be useful for learning or gigs where they can expect a bit of rough treatment. For my money I would go for a mid level guitar. Say a low end Martin, Taylor or a Breedlove. Save those pennies and spend a grand and you will get a good guitar not a great one but a good one.
    Kikuta
    One thing you need to keep in mind with acoustic guitars in this price range is that, like all guitars, there tends to be a varying range of quality for any manufactured model. One person's AJ-100 may sound a lot better than another AJ-100, simply due to the manufacturing process. That said, you can find some real gems - and duds - in the low end guitar range. Still, nothing compares to a James Goodall guitar.
    Shinamura
    Ok, I own Epiphones, Squires, and a Takamine (my fave), but I know that when it comes to quality, you can't compare an Epiphone to a Gibson or a Taylor. That's apples to oranges, simply put. But for the price, I'm sure the AJ-100 is a nice deal, but still, not in the class of Gibsons and Taylors.
    witmachine
    I've got this guitar and i've used it at gigs and just playing around... I've had other guitarists use it for a gig and they've complented on its sound... So I guess i got lucky
    dragonkidkoga
    haha my friend didn't try it out and he got a crappy one. factory made guitars...pfft, their all different and none of them sound the same at all (goes for squier too) but with gibson you get an entirely different sound with all of them but the all have the same sound in a sense. anyway the neck was too thick, not glued on properly, action sucked and it was hard for him to learn on it
    Glenny2xd
    I paid $130 CDN brand new, factory shipped... Everything was fine except one fret sticking out but easily filed down down... Very nice guitar for the price, I did not expect much out of it but it surpassed all... Binding on the neck and body excellent finish ok tuning machines...very good guitar for beginner or pro who needs a gigging guitar...
    The70Flying's
    I am an ok guitarist im going into my third year now and i need a new acoutic guitar. My first acoustic was a ok CORT guitar and i want a new one. This one looks good but i want to know if there are better ones for around $200-$250 canadian.
    Paxil
    this guitar is great ive had it for a few weeks and im a professional guitar player and i cant afford a Takamine because i have a family to feed soo i bought one of these and its brilliant the sound is insane i dont even have to plug in in front of 70 people any more and yea i po in my dean markely pickup but i love this thing its great nothing wrong with it perfect condition someone sanded the action at some point but newer epiphones have pointy corners on the action towards the fretboard so i can see why and that is the only sanded part bridge is nice harmod plucks and pops and even SLAPS wonderfully soo no one complain $183.00 plus tax retail cant complain
    mark.roundell.9
    Just bought one of these guitars for my 12 yo and it sounds very nice. It was used for $90 and that's quite a deal. He is starting out and was using a Epiphone SG and wanted an acoustic. I had a DR100 in my hands a the guy at the Long and McQuade suggested the used AJ100. Nice.
    Quantumdriven
    This was my first disaster guitar purchase. Got mine at a pawn shop for $135. Never again will I run off with a guitar because of price and not check it over better. Turns out that my nut and saddle and truss rod could not bring this down to playable action without massive fret buzzing all over the place. The verdict? Well the gawd damn frets were rising up out of their slots! So take my warning and use a magnifying glass to check for frets going nuts. This is indeed Epiphone's bottom of the barrel guitar model, but surely mine had been fried in a car.
    kelley.stewart.
    I have one and I have had it for about at least 6 years,.. I can't stand it, hard to play,... cheap! Looks good but don't play well!
    macgregor17
    I like my AJ100. I did minor upgrades (replace bridge with bone and lowered it). It is very tough, plays comfortably. I find it to be an excellent practice and travel guitar. Mine holds tune well. May need minor truss rod adjustment with major weather/temperature changes. Mine is not real loud unless I play it hard, but I like the tone, soft or loud. Good practice and songwriting guitar or a good 2nd guitar.