Price paid: $ 79
Purchased from: American Musical Supply
Features — 10
Mine is a scratch and dent item that was a package which my wife bought me 3 weeks ago for my 56th birthday from AMS. It's the sunburst finish and has a Select Spruce top which I suspect is a laminate, Mahogany back and sides, Maple neck with a Rosewood fretboard, Chrome covered tuners that have die-cast pegs. It also came with a heavy, duty, Epiphone gig bag, headstock, tuner, Guitar basics DVD, picks, and a chord book. The later 2 items I threw away seeing that I've been playing for 43 years. All in all considering what my wife paid for it, this is definitely a steal.
Sound — 9
AMS said that this was a "Scratch and Dent" item but for the love of me, the only thing I could find wrong was a slight dent on the shipping box. I think they just have too many of these in stock and are just trying to move them. I did have to do some work on the guitar to make it playable and that was to, lower the action which was just a tad too high. I then cleaned the fretboard with some lemon oil in order to get rid of that dye which Epiphone tends to put on their lower level guitars. After that, I took off the stock strings and replaced them with a new set of Elixirs 11-52 which made a huge difference. For a guitar which costs $109.00 by itself brand new, this has a really great tone which will surprise a lot of people. I can see why these are a hot seller for Epiphone.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
The action on this was, pretty high but after a truss rod adjustment, I was not only able to straighten out the fretboard but also have the action at a very playable level. The tuners on this guitar are actually very good and hold tuning quite well. There were no fret ends protruding on the neck and the fretboard is very comfortable to play on. I did however, have to tighten the screws on the tuners which must've slipped by Epiphone's QC department. They should pay more attention to stuff like this as far as I'm concerned.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I'm sure that some folks on here might disagree with me but, I personally feel that you could use this guitar for live gigs. Like I mentioned earlier, the stock tuners on these newer models are really good and the strap buttons are very solid as well. The finish seems to be very solid and looks like it could last a lifetime provided you take the proper care with the instrument. Even though mine came with a gig bag, I do plan to invest in a hardshell case for it, which is what I do for all of my guitars. Better to be safe than sorry I always say.
Overall Impression — 9
I made the switch to strictly acoustic several months ago after doing the band thing for over 35 plus years. I just got sick and tired of dealing with both, egos, drama, and bullshit. I've been playing for 43 years and right now, I play a mix of both blues and classic rock. Besides this one, I also own a Fender CD60CE in Mahogany, a Fender DG60, and a Mitchell DR-100. If this was stolen or lost would I buy another, I'm not sure. I would probably upgrade to a Epiphone AJ-100 or a Hummingbird. But having said that, this guitar is the best value in it's price range and is great for beginners or the musician who is on a low budget. Highly recommended!