Price paid: C$ 439
Purchased from: Long & Mcquade
Sound — 9
Sounds great, I've heard from alot of people that the pickups on these epis were junk, but to me they sound pretty decent. I use an old Fender Princeton with it, no pedals, only distortion from the second channel on the amp. Sounds great clean or distorted, but personally I prefer the distortion. Of course I can beta Gibson would sound a hell of a lot better compared to this one, but for what I payed it sounds great.
Overall Impression — 9
I play lots of soft stuff and lots of harder stuff, but noting too fast or hardcore. I play a lot of the same music I listen to, Foo Fighters, Silversun pickups, Death Cab For Cutie, Rebecca Black (kidding lol), mostly rock stuff. Guitar suits my style fine. I've been playing for like 4 years, self taught, no lessons. I also own a tribute G&L Legacy, which looks and plays nice, but its a totally different type of guitar than the Firebird, to me its kind of hard to compare the two. I think they're both great. If it were stolen, I'd definitely get another one. Something I never mentioned above, and its kind of a huge issue for me, is that this guitar has a lot of neck dive. Its not that bad though, if I let go of the guitar, it doesn't hit the floor, it just slides a little bit past my waist. Still, it is a bit of a problem. I blame the design of the guitar, and the strap button position. It would slide a lot less if the top strap button were moved behind the neck joint, like the Gibson ES-335. I have a thing for the firebird look. When I first started playing, I looked into a ton of different styles of guitars... Fenders, Epiphones, Rickenbackers, Ibanez, Eastwoods, and out of every guitar I have ever seen, the Firebird remains my favourite for looks. The korina wood makes it stand out even more to me. If only it came with a better case...
Reliability & Durability — 10
Yeah I think this guitar would be great for live playing. The tuners are great. I've heard from a lot of people that the gearless tuners are not suited for changing tunings quickly (especially to drop D), because of the 40:1 ratio they have. IMHO, the people that say that are full of shit. It takes like 1-2 extra turns to get the right note, not to mention these tuners are way more accurate than most others. I would probably use it without a backup guitar, mainly cause it works fine, and also because it looks super bad-ass. As for the hardware lasting, I have no idea how long it will last. Probably a long time.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
I think it was set up fine, I have no trouble playing it so it works for me. I don't usually mess with the pickup height and bridge height and all that, it sounds and plays just fine. After playing a Strat for like 3 years it did take some getting used to, but I think all new guitars do. Mostly everything is fine on the guitar but there are a few quality concerns I have. When I switch between pickups I hear a crackly sound, and the top strap button is loose. However, it is an Epiphone after all, not a Gibson. Aside from that everything is great.
Features — 8
No idea where or when it was made. 22 frets, medium sized I think. Body and neck is made out of korina wood, which is pretty unique, and that's one of the reasons why I bought it. Rosewood fretboard, firebird style body (obviously), stop bar tailpiece bridge, one volume and tone control for each pickup, two regular-sized Epiphone humbuckers, and Steinberger gearless tuners (which are really great by the way). Got a really big thunderbird case for it, unfortunately that was the only case the store could find for my guitar.. Its fine and all, but its bulky as hell. Also got some free picks, but no strap. I was disappointed with the size of the case they gave me, which I blame for both the guitars irregular shape, and the store for not having a better inventory of cases. However the guitar itself is great.