Price paid: $ 349.99
Purchased from: Guitar Center
Sound — 8
I play mostly classic rock and 80's hair metal with some occasional blues thrown in, and this guitar can handle it all. I'm using my Crate GTD 120 and a DigiTech RP-70 effects processor with it. The pickups on this guitar do have a tendency to feedback and hum a bit so I suggest that you use a noise gate or some type of effects processor. The pups on this guitar are quite powerful and can put out some serious sustain and are full and bright, so using the tone knobs is reccommended.
Overall Impression — 9
As I mentioned earlier, I play classic rock, 80's hair metal and blues. I also own a Crate GTD 120 and a DigiTech RP-70 and a 2006 Fender MIM Sunburst Strat. If anything ever happened to this guitar, I would go out and get another one, no problem. This guitar is a good deal for the money. What I like about it is, it's a affordable alternative for those of us Who can't afford the outrageous prices for a USA made Gibson, and seeing that Epiphone is owned by them, it's almost like having the real thing.
Reliability & Durability — 9
I have a habit of babying my equipment, so reliability should not be a problem at all. This should last me a very long time. I know I could depend on it for a gig without a backup but I always bring a extra guitar in case of a string break or anything like that. Better to be safe than sorry I always say. The finish looks like it will last along with everything else. This is a keeper.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
Here's where I encountered some problems when I took this home. This sounded good at the store when I bought it, but when I got it home, it just would not stay in tune, even with the Grovers. It turns out that the intonation was off along with the string height on the neck. Once I took care of those problems, I was relieved to see that the Grovers did their job at keeping this guitar in tune. I fully reccommend to anyone that if you're going to buy this or any Epiphone, that you go and have a setup done because IMO, the label on the back where it says inspected and setup in the USA by so and so, is BS! Other than that, I couldn't fine any flaws other than having to lower the pickups a bit. There were no problems with the frets, wiring, jack, 3 way Switch or anything else. This is one solidly made instrument.
Features — 10
Mine is a 2008 Custom Shop, Limited Edition Model in Alpine White with the Dot inlays on a 22 fret, rosewood fretboard, mahoghany neck and body with Grover tuners, Epiphone Alnico open coil passive Humbuckers, 3 way pickup Switch, 2 sets of volume and tone controls with a tune-o-matice locking style bridge.