Price paid: $ 1800
Purchased from: Henris Music
Sound — 10
This is my favorite guitar. It plays like a dream, and has that classic Les Paul tone, although the stock pickups are shit (sounds very burried). I switched them out with Jm Rolph handwound pickups, and it sounds incredible now. it's not noisy at all, Huge Sound with the right amp. I play through a Peavey classic 50 from the '80s, and use a old tube screamer, Yngwie Malmsteen overdrive, and it just sounds huge. I agree it can't sound like a Strat, but unless you put a humbucker in a Strat, the Strat can't sound like a les paul (why the hell would you put a humbucker in a Strat beats me). I do own a Strat, and I like both for different reasons. If your lookin for a huge warm tone, this is the guitar for you.
Overall Impression — 10
I play jazz, rock, fusion, funk etc. I've been playing for 6 years. I have a Peavy Classic 50 from the '80s, Original Tube Screamer, Yngwie Malmsteem overdrive, Keeley Compressor, Ibanez analog delay (reissue), and a Old Boss CE-2 (Black Label Japan), and a Keeley modded Boss DS-1. If this guitar was stolen or lost, I would imediately save up all my money to replace this beast. It has become a huge part of my playing and the sound I'm looking for. It sounds huge if you have the right equipment. I hate that it's heavy as a brick, but that's the Les Paul thing. You really can't compared a Les Paul to a Strat or a Tele, but if your into the les paul thing, what better instrument then a Les Paul? I really recommend getting new pickups if the guitar was nething like mine.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I've played out Live with it, and it is very reliable. I have dropped it a few times, and sofar nothing bad happened heh (I really try not to drop it). You definately need strap locks for this beast. it's heavy but what les paul isnt? I use my Strat also, but it's only for the type of sound I'm going for. Finish is heavy.
Action, Fit & Finish — 10
The action was perfect at the shop. The pickups like I said were just junk, but maybe it was just the one I bought. The guitar was in perfect condition. I played 5 other les pauls in the store, ranging from the Standard to the Studio (Studios are junk). This guitar played the best and sounded the best out of all of those. I went in there looking for a standard but this one stuck out so much more.