I have both. Before I had a Gibson Les Paul I simply could not believe that a Gibson Les Paul at 3 or 4 times the price of the Epi was 3 or 4 times better. I'm still not convinced. But for me, there IS a marked difference. I love the larger frets on the Gibson, I prefer the nitro finish and the real binding. Having said that, when I picked up a 339 I looked at both Gibson and Epi options. I liked the feel of the Gibson more, but just couldn't justify the price differential (the Gibson is FIVE TIMES more expensive!). But hey, I consider myself lucky enough to have the choice. I prefer the larger frets on the Gibson by a long way, but if I take my 339 out to a jam and the headstock gets smashed then I'm out a $500 guitar, not a $2,500 guitar. Play whatever you like, justify the money however you like. There is certainly a place for both brands.