Price paid: $ 849.99
Purchased from: Musician's Friend
Sound — 10
The sound of this guitar is absolutely gorgeous. Although it's a Studio, it's got the sound of a Standard. I play just about everything from Indie rock, to jazz, to classic rock, to country, to punk, and I can safely say that this guitar is very versatile. While I really wish it had a bit more twang, I should bought a Telecaster for that. Another thing about this guitar is that it's got the brightest tone of any Les Paul that I've played. This is probably due to the BurstBucker Pros. They're nice pickups. Very sweet Vintage sound. Especially with reverb.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this guitar is a GREAT buy. In fact, the 850 dollar pricetag was what drew me into buying this baby. I mean, rarely have I seen ANY Les Pauls lower than $1,000. Like I said before, it doesn't look as nice as a Les Paul Standard or classic, but it sounds just as good, if not better. Other than that, this guitar's got everything you'd expect in a Gibson. If it were lost or stolen, I'd probably get another one or save up for an impossibly expensive Gretch White Falcon. If you care about sound more than looks, this guitar was made for you. Buy it. Good price. Good Deal. Good guitar.
Reliability & Durability — 8
So far this guitar has been pretty reliable. The hardware is awesome, and the strap buttons are solid, though a bit small (use straplocks if possible). However, the worst part about this guitar is that it's more vulnerable to dents and scratches than any other Les Paul, since the finish seems a bit weaker. Also, the carved top is mahogany, rather than maple (which I think is a softer wood, no?). Anyhow, I would still use this guitar without a backup, despite the fact that not having a backup guitar at a gig is stupid.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
While the guitar is great, the factory setup didn't quite meet my expectations. In fact, I think Gibson's overall quality in terms of factory setups is dropping, since I know many who feel the same way. For my guitar, I had to re-adjust the intonation, fix a volume knob that they had put on upside down, straighten the pickup selector ring, tighten the strap button closest to the bridge, and raise the action a bit due to fret buzz. However, the pickups seemed to be setup nicely at the factory. Though it's not the prettiest thing I've ever seen, the finish seems alright to me, but a tad weak. Overall though, it's not as bad as it sounds since I make a shitload of adjustments to all my guitars. Also, I forgot to mention that the neck is pretty fat, so it's not as fast as what I'm used to (I've been playing on my Stratocaster for years). It also doesn't weigh as much as other Les Pauls (in my opinion).
Features — 10
First off, I must say this is a strange guitar. Although it's classified as a "Les Paul Studio Limited," it has hardware that's found in the newer Les Paul Standards. It was made in the USA. It's got a worn cherry finish, a carved mahogany top as well as a mahogany back, a '59 rounded mahogany neck, rosewood fingerboard, 22 frets, pearloid trapezoid inlays, non-locking green key tuners, Tune-O-Matic bridge, stopbar tailpiece, 2 volume controls, 2 tone controls, 3-way selector Switch, a raised pickguard, and a pair of Alnico 5 BurstBucker Pro humbuckers. Also came with a Gibson hardshell case.