Price paid: A$ 1300
Purchased from: SF Music, Australia.
Sound — 7
First of all, the versatility of any good Les Paul is massive, especially when you can change your pickups. Straight out of the box, you can achieve a great metal tone, sweet blues tones, and crunchy rock tones. I have had my pickups changed to the EMG 81+85 set, and they sound sweet in this baby. This combination of pickups and guitar destroy all, and paired with a Peavey 5150 half stack, nothing can beat it. I have no need for any effects at this stage, so I can't comment on it's sound with effects. At high gain levels, the original humbuckers squeal like crazy, so it is advisable to change the pickups out if you play in a band that's always cranking the gain and volume to 11. With a set of EMG's, the guitar puts out some of the best sounds I've ever heard, very full and articulate, with harmonics like a banshee. I've rated the sound at 7 because for heavy metal, you'll definately want to change the pickups.
Overall Impression — 8
I play metalcore, and with a Peavey 5150 behind you, and a set of EMGs in your les paul, you feel like a king. I've been playing for about 6 years now, and own a fair few guitars I wont bother mentioning, as well as an Ibanez RG421, and the afforementioned Peavey 5150. I asked all I could when I bought the guitar so I knew exactly what I was getting. If this guitar was lost or stolen, firstly I'd take any neccessary steps to bring justice to the fiend Who stole it. Then, I would definately go buy another one, possibly 3 more. I love everything about this guitar. The body shape, the colour of it, and the way the neck feels especially. I didn't compare it to any other products specifically, just other les pauls, and this model came out on top. it has all I need, never been a fan of tremolos.
Reliability & Durability — 8
These guitars are like tanks. They will take whatever you can throw at them. Live playing is like letting it play in a sand box. The hardware DOES last, however it is also subject to rust depending on where you Live and where you keep it. The strap buttons never had a chance to prove themselves to me, as I bought a set of Dunlop Straplocks along with the guitar, but I do still own them, and may one day use them. I have gigged with this guitar for about 3 or 4 years, without a backup guitar, and never had a problem with it, apart from a string breaking mid-set here and there. The guitar's finish has lasted superbly, with only a few dents and nicks here and there from almost 5 years of tough love.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The factory setup was pretty good from what I remember, with the action being at a perfect level in Harmony with the way the humbuckers were adjusted. The top was perfectly carved, with not a single out of place dent or line, and both parts of the bridge are perfectly positioned. At time of buying, there were no flaws to speak of, what'soever. However, due to living near the ocean, some of the once beautiful golden hardware has become rusted and oxidised. though some would call this ageing, and I think it makes the guitar look distinguished.
Features — 8
This is a Korean Made Les Paul, manufactured in late 2003 I believe. It comes with 21 jumbo sized frets, on a rosewood fretboard, with a maple neck. It is a solid curved top guitar, with mahogany body and neck. It comes in a variety of colours, mine is black, with white binding, and gold hardware. The Tune-o-matic bridge and stop tail team up with passive electronics, 2 Volume pots and 2 Tone pots, Grover tuners and a dual humbuckers manufactured by Epiphone to provide a hell of a playing experience. No Accessories are included, but I DID get a poster, manual, and a FREE cardboard box!