Price paid: £ 649
Purchased from: Mansons Guitar Shop UK
Sound — 10
Mostly a blues, rock, metal player, really into stuff like Marco Sfogli, Guthrie Govan, Clapton, ZZtop, Parkway Drive, GNR(Suprise!). I play it on a Roland Micro Cube at home, but Gig through a Marshall stack. Its not too suited to modern metal or playing fast in the high frets, but thats a problem with Les Pauls in general due to their heel design in the neck really. The Alnico pickups arent too great for modern metal either, as it doesnt have that tightness needed for more articulate palm muting. Nonetheless its still got enough bite for some Maiden or older Metallica. Of course if anybody buy this guitar for playing metal, they should probably see a doctor or never be allowed to touch a guitar anyway. This guitar was designed for rock, and that's where it excels. It responds beautifully to playing dynamics, and has incredible crunch and sustain. The bridge pickup has this incredible bite to it and solidness to it, with a very classic vibe to it. Neck pickup has a great smoothness to it, whilst being well defined at the same time. Turn down the tone knobs and you can get a November Rain sort of tone. The clean sound is also amazing, perhaps the best clean tone I've heard second apart from certain Strats I've played previously. It has a certain resonation to it, which is incredibly clear and defined. Its definitely got a more warm vibe to it thanks to the pickups and the fact its a huge slab of mahogany basically. One thing that especially impressed me is the cleans on the treble pickup. On many other guitars the treble pickup gives a very harsh thin sound, equivalent to someone taking a crap in your ears. I've owned an Ibanez RG, Iceman, ESP Horizon and Squier, this thing destroys all of them in the clean department. Good job Epiphone! In essence this thing is purely a rock guitar, and designed to make rock tones. The AFD epi definitely delivers, I daresay it sounds better than quite a few Gibsons I've tried. Blasphemous!
Overall Impression — 9
As a rock player, this guitar is more than ideal for anyone looking for a good guitar unless you demand a lot of high fret access. There really isnt any major faults about it, apart from being too awesome, the fact I don't have 10 more of them and me not being able to put it down for more than 5 minutes. For a classic rock enthusiast, this is definitely a highly considerable option, and looks the part too! One problem I do have is the cost, seeing how its cost is based off the novelty of having Slash's guitar. You could probably get a similar sounding guitar if you put Slash's pickups into a Standard Epiphone, yet again a case, lead and picks are included. Its more an investment for the Slash fan, but as I've mentioned a squillion times before its amber finish is beautifulll, did I mention its beautiful? Honestly pictures don't do this justice, go out to a shop now, you can thank me later after you reattach your jaw. Its also quite a unique finish which will definitely turn heads and score you countless waves of women/men/women and men? In my honest opinion I think it looks better than the Gibson version (with the exception of the headstock design). Gibson normally uses nitrocellulose finishes, which improve the guitars tone but isnt as glossy as the Epiphone polyurethane finish. Perhaps on a sunburst the faded look would be more appealing, but I personally love glossinessness on the Epi version. As already mentioned, my only request is that it came with straplocks like previous models, and maybe a free yacht. Otherwise I'm extremely impressed with this guitar, far exceeding previous Epiphone models I've tried. I recommend you all go out and buy it now, should you not like it you can donate it to me.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar is solid, you could cut down trees with it. You could smash it against a tank and the only thing you'd damage is well, the tank. The tulip style tuners protrude a bit more than regular tuners and are a bit thinner so that might be an area of worry, but seems solid for now. I havent had this guitar long enough to see how durable it is really, but previous Epiphone LPs ive tried have had problems with: - Strap buttons stripping out - Bad pickup wiring, leading to reduced pickup output or not output at all at times. - Input jack becomes wobbly as the hex holding it loosens. - Toggle Switch becoming loose - Volume/tone knobs coming loose. However this guitar definitely seems more solid than other Epiphones I've tried, so I hope it wont happen. The strap locks definitely seem more solid, but strap locks are always a good idea. Id be reasonably confident only using this guitar, but I would also bring another guitar, but moreso for tuning reasons. Finish is incredibly well done, but is prone to picking up fingerprints easily.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The guitar was set up at Mansons, and seeing as they've made guitars for Led Zeppelin and Muse, it felt like it was set up by God himself. However before the setup the action was a bit high, but that's more of a preference thing. Strings as previously mentioned weren't too great though. The Amber top was pretty well matched, wasn't the best, but its only really noticable if you look at it closely. However getting a well matched one is a bit of pot luck, I've seen other Epi AFD Les Pauls with terrible matches that might have been done by blind monkeys. Mine was pretty good though, can't really complain. Of course the finish itself is so ridiculously good looking that I can live with it really. The back, neck and headstock are coloured a dark wine red finish, which pretty much is the definition of sex appeal. The neck is incredibly smooth which makes fast playing super easy. The thickness of the neck is definitely something new to me, but its grown on me quite a bit as it makes bends more controllable and easy. Tuners are Grover tuners, pretty much speaks for itself. I love the Vintage finish to them, definitely a great finishing touch. The headstock has a Slash skull logo on it, also on the included case. I personally don't like it having bought the guitar mainly for its looks and classic rock sounds and not so much for the Slash factor, but again its a preference thing. Problems are very minor finishwise; where the amber top meets the mahogany there is a bit of paint overlapping, again not overly noticable but may be an issue for the more finicky of guitarists. What I have noticed though is that on the neck a few frets there are signs of the wood drying, which could affect the guitar in the future. However a bit of lemon oil should remedy that. Overall quality is incredible, with only minor flaws that are hard to notice. Yet again with Epiphone, quality can vary so it might depend on the guitar you get!
Features — 9
-Made in China 2010 -22 frets, 24.75 scale, regular frets i presume -Solid top -Mahogany Body and Neck -Les paul body shape in case you haven't guessed. -Amber finish -Grover tuners -Slash alnico pro 2 custom Pickups -Comes with a case, 12 picks, lead and a little booklet of awesome. Its got everything you need on a guitar, can't really ask for more. Did with it came with straplocks and maybe even a strap, which should have been included seeing as the previous Slash models had them. The strings that came with it stock were quite sticky, and left a residue on the fingers but I changed them upon buying it. Otherwise its got pretty much all the features you'd expect from a Les Paul.