Price paid: $ 700
Purchased from: All Music Inc.
Sound — 9
The humbucker's and coil taps combined can give me a wide range of sounds. I play anything and everything. With this guitar I have played classic rock, electric blues, electric bob dylan folk, sublime stoner-music, heavy metal and even Lady GaGa. I even do heavy slide riffs on it. It can follow along with any of it beautifully. As a practice amp I have a simple Fender champ. When I gig I usuallu borrow my friend's Crate amp, and I am shopping for a Vox VT100 amplifier. It sounds good with all of them. The effects I use are generally overdrive, wah, uni-vibe, gain, distortion, all the good stuff. I play on every possible setting with them. Some sound better than others but none really dissappoint. The sound is fat and fairly clean just like all les pauls with the added kick from the 57 pickups. It has a massive variety and I can't see a need for another guitar any time soon.
Overall Impression — 10
This guitar is actually the love of my life. It does anything I tell it to do. It's the only guitar I can sweep-pick on, but it sounds great when I do. I have been playing guitar for a bout 3 years but I have been playing music for 7 years. If it were stolen or lost I would either buy this guitar again (but in black next time) or I would buy a cheap knock-off and rig it to have the same electronics and just work on it until it fit my specifications. I chose this guitar over the Telecaster it was competing with because it was so much fuller and more versatile, even though it was almost double the cost and money has never been abundant for me. The only thing I wish it had was a goldtop finish, but I've never seen an Epiphone with one so maybe I am indulging in useless fantasy. Overall this guitar has everything I really need. I see myself playing it for a long time.
Reliability & Durability — 9
This guitar is solid. And heavy. It is a lot to lug around but I can feel that its tough. Its taken a few hits from idiots leaving it in bad places or cases falling off tables but it's still going strong. Because of the person I am I would never only take a single guitar to a gig. I always have a backup Acoustic and maybe even my old Strat sometimes. The finish is heavy and it hasn't faded yet but I really can't say for the future.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
When I got the guitar it was set up perfectly. I found no flaws and no imperfections. The only thing I've done to this guitar since purchase is get some new strings on it. No complaints at all.
Features — 10
The "Tribute" LP is an Epiphone Les Paul Standard with some differentiations that make it distinctive. It 22 Medium-Jumbo Frets and two different available neck profiles. It has the Standard Les Paul asymmetrical neck, or the 1960's SlimTaper neck which to me is much more comfortable then any other Gibson-Epiphone neck. Everything else on this guitar is fairly Standard except for a few extra features. The pickups are beautiful remakes of '57 PAF Les Paul pickups and they really kick. My guitar plays circles around my friends' schecter, ESPs and Strats. It also has coil taps in the tone knobs which chnages the humbucker's sound into a thinner cross between a single coil and a P90. The final twist is a set of grover locking tuners that really do excellent work. The guitar came with a hardshell case and a warranty card which I forgot to fill out. I really have no complaints for this guitar's features, everything does its job the way I need it to.