SG '61 Reissue review by Gibson

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 10
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 9.1 (97 votes)
Gibson: SG '61 Reissue

Price paid: $ 1382.5

Purchased from: Long and McQuade toronto

Sound — 10
This guitar suits many different styles such as Classic rock, Jazz/Blues, and even Shred (due to its thin neck). I use a Vox AD50VT with it which is a modelling amp so I have no need for pedals at the moment. It works excellent with reverb and full gain on a clean setting which gives a "fendery" sound. On the other hand, it also works well on Highgain settings (gain halfway, if you use more it starts to get messier, obviously) and gives excellent lead tones on AC30 setting with gain around 3/4 full. The pickups are very versatile and I usually use the neck pickup for jazz (and shred) as it gives a warm sound, while the bridge pickup nails classic rock tones (think Led Zeppelin's Heartbreaker).

Overall Impression — 10
This is an excellent match for my style of music, the only reason I got this particular model as opposed to the SG Standard was because of the slim taper neck. I wanted something that was "rock and roll" but also something I could play shred and sweep-style stuff on. I have been playing for 4 years and am very dedicated. I am currently in University and taking a music minor along with which I participate in a Classical guitar ensemble. I have owned previous guitars such as Godin SD, Epiphone Casino and Ibanez RG 350DX. I play through a Vox AD50VT and a DA5 Practice amp. Before buying this product, make sure you research other possible options, I did, and I am glad. I was about to buy a Standard but the neck wasn't for me. If it was stolen, I would definetly buy another one. I love everything about it, except the maintinance demanding finish. My favorite feature again, is the slim taper neck. I compared it to many other products, even an Les Paul Standard, and I still like this one the best. In my opinion it is one of the best Gibson guitar models ever made. One thing I wish it had was some kind of Vibrato, down the line I am thinking of putting a Bigsby on it. Anyways, this guitar is a 10/10, and thanks for reading my review.

Reliability & Durability — 10
This guitar will definetly withstand Live playing, everything is solid, and I would go onstage without a backup. For some people, the high neck joint location may be troublesome, because it is more fragile than the standards, but it's a guitar not a baseball bat. Also, although the strap buttons are pretty solid, I would highly recommend getting strap locks because it's not wise to take a risk with such an expensive instrument, especially with the neck dive. As I mentioned before, the finish is sensitive, but as long as you wipe it off and polish it, there should be no problems.

Action, Fit & Finish — 10
The guitar had an excellent setup from the factory. Action, intonation, pickups, everything was great. One thing I noticed though, was that the pickgaurd was missing a screw, but I had the salesman at the store put one it, so no problem. I checked the guitar for scratches, it was clean. Not a single scratch. It was polished, both the hardware and the body. Some of the tuning pegs were a bit uneven in their tension, but it is not a problem at all, and I would go to the store to get it fixed, I just don't have the time, and it's not a concern right now. All the electronics were fine also. No noisy pickup selector, nothing loose, ect.

Features — 10
This guitar was made in 2007, in the USA. It has 22 frets and features a slim taper neck which I believe is the slimmest neck offered on Gibsons, but still keeps a Gibson "round" shape, and not a toothpick Ibanez neck (nothing against those). The Mahogany solid top features the Heritage Cherry paintjob which is beautifully laquered to give a shiny lustre. Warning: The Nitro Cellulose laquer is very sensitive and things like extreme temperature changes may cause it to crack, but things like sweat are not a threat if you wipe off your guitar after the playing session, use only the Gibson polish with a 100% cotton cloth so to avoid scratching. The Gibson finish is a real eye-catcher and ages beautifully; If you take care of this guitar it will benifit you in the long run, after all, they are guaranteed to outlive you). The body has two cutaway horns which are now so strongly associated with hard rock thanks to Angus Young and Tony Lommi. It has a Tune-O-Matic Bridge, 2 Volume and 2 tone controls and a 3-way pickup selector. The '57 classic humbuckers in the bridge and neck are great for classic rock as they are not too high-output, but I also find it is easy to play shred such as paganini on it, but obviously an Ibanez style guitar is preferred for that kind of work. The green key tuners are problem free, although some people complain about them due to the fact that they are plastic. In my opinion, I think they suit the guitar very well and feel very sturdy. This guitar comes with a Gibson USA Hardshell case.

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