Sound — 9
As I play mostly metal/hard rock it's easy to see why I got this guitar I would've thought. The EMG's are loud n' clear and have nearly become Standard fittings to any metal players guitar. I practice on solid state Line6 at home but when I practice/gig with my band we borrow various Marshall valve amps and the EMG's easliy push them into overdrive. I have a Boss MT-2 Metal Zone distortion pedal but I hardly ever use it, especially with the valve amps. The EMG's and amp give me all the crunch I need. Back off on the volume and a very usable clean tone is there. The neck 85 is warm and round without being muddy and the bridge similar but brighter. Purists will always argue that active pickups can't match the tone in passives and they have a point BUT it really depends on what style you play. Metal isn't about slow, "moving" solo's. It's about loud, abbrasive, crunch and this guitar delivers. So for what I bought it for and what it gives, a well earned 9.
Overall Impression — 9
My overall impression is that this is a guitar well worth it's price tag. It has features you won't find on a production Gibson LP, it is really well built and providing I had the money I would replace it the same day if it were lost or stolen. I've been playing seriously for 4 years now and even though I'm reaching a level of ability that justifies maybe investing in a more expensive guitar - maybe an ESP - this Epiphone is covering all the bases for now. I visit guitar stores all the time to test other models and in my opinion this guitar, in this price range and for what I bought it for, is unbeatable. I really am very happy with it and until I have the money to get a top end ESP or maybe a Gibson then I have nothing to complain about and nor will you if you're in the same boat as me, musically and financially speaking. Pass on this guitar and you've missed a gem.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar will stand Live playing, that I can guarantee. I've gigged it maybe 10 times plus loads of practice sessions and practice at home and have'nt had any problems. It's solid. As I said earlier I changed the strap buttons to Schaller so i can't comment on the stock ones but the Schaller's havn't budged an inch. I would never gig without a backup - Who does in a band? - but string breakage or faulty electrics haven't been a problem. The finish is holding up fine. I don't treat guitars with much reverence either but there's no problem so far with it's looks. The neck had a satin finish when new but through all my playing I've worn it down to a shiny gloss. If this is qualifies as a problem or durability problem for people I'd be surprised. 9 points.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
I went over most of this earlier so see the first section if you've got the memory of a goldfish. Just to underline: the only "problems" I've had are small. The action supplied was fine but I lowered it a little. The intonation as supplied wasn't perfect either and my lowering the action threw it a little more but these are hardly issues. Any store would or should set up a guitar as you require if you can't do it yourself. 9 months in and so far I've had no technical problems at all. As I said before the guitar was impecably built and put together and I've gone over every inch and found nothing I can mark it down on build wise.
Features — 8
Epiphone Les Paul Prophecy EX I purchased this guitar in Dec. '08 and noe I've had it a good while I feel I can give a fairly balanced review. By the way, the second so-called review for this guitar is full of mistakes. Whoever wrote it hasn't even played the guitar e.g. Stating it has 22 frets when it has 24. It seems the reviewer hates Epiphone and begs the question: why review or buy a guitar you obviously don't like? Anyway, on with the review. My guitar was bought in Dec. '08 and was made the same year in Korea. The main features of the guitar are: -Mahogany body with quilted maple cap -24 fret "speed taper" neck with blade inlays and satin finish -EMG 81/85 pickups -Grover Tuners -LockTone Tun-o-matic bridge -Three way toggle Switch -One volume and one tone pot -Double bound body and bound neck -Seperate "pop-up" compartment for the pickups 9V battery -Strap-locks The guitar is built to the long tried and tested LP format of mahogany body with maple cap and mahogany neck. As anyone Who has tried a LP knows this makes it a heavy guitar but the benefits are loads of sustain. It feels rock-solid in other words. The quilted maple cap looks great although the dark finish does hide it a bit. The body is flawlessly bound on both sides and only a philistine would call this guitar ugly. The neck is a bit of a departure for an LP. With 24 frets and what Epiphone call a "speed taper" size/radius it isn't like a traditional LP neck. It's fast! Not overly thin and not baseball bat thick, it really is so comfortable to play. Not having the biggest hands in the world it suits me perfectly. The neck and headstock are also bound, the frets are well dressed and polished with no sharp edges. The back of the neck has a satin finish which means sweaty hands don't stick. Playing as much as I do I've already worn this to a Shine - especially between the 1st and 12th frets - but if anything it's just made the neck faster. It certainly hasn't hampered me. I think the nut is plastic although I'm not 100% sure but mine was well cut. If you play very heavy gauges you might have to re-cut it. The Grover tuners are finished in black, feel solid, and i havn't had any tuning problems whatsoever. The guitar came with a workable, fret-buzz free action which I lowered a touch. The intonation wasn't perfect either but these are hardly problems as most stores will set up a guitar to you're wishes when you buy and/or there's plenty of online help for beginners. The LockTone tun-o-matic bridge is also finsihed in black and has given me no problems. A three way Switch in the usual posistion has also given no headaches, the other controls being one volume and one tone pot, both with black metal knobs topped to match the guitar finish. Some people I'm sure would prefer a two volume/two tone set-up but for myself it's not something I've missed. The active EMG pickups (81 bridge, 85 neck) are without doubt one of the main selling points of the guitar. As far as I'm aware no Gibson production model LP comes fitted with EMG's and this was probably the main reason I got this guitar. I love LP's and I wanted EMG's. I had a limited budget and even buying a studio LP (which I didn't really want) and getting EMG's fitted would be way more expensive than this guitar. That plus the exceptional workmanship on the Epiphone and it was a no-brainer. Some people seem to think if it isn't US made it's no good. NOT true. At least not in the case of the Prophecy series. To finish off the guitar came with Epiphone strap-locks. As I already have Schaller strap-locks on my other guitar this is the only mod I've made and I'm looking at putting locking Grover machine heads on as well. There was - as usual with Epiphone - no bag or case which is a shame for a guitar this good. A little prioe increase for one or the other I could have lived with. There did follow a cable and tools but that's it. A little disapointing but when all is said and done this really is a good, solid and well built guitar. No, it isn't a '59 'burst LP but then playing metal and giging one of those is hardly likely either. ;) A very solid 8.