2019 Custom Shop Reissue Changes Sneak Peek!

matkoehler

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@matkoehler can you please tell us whether 1968 customs will be any different from the 50th anniversary ones? it seems like they'll be gloss only, but what about other details? will they have same neck shape profile and size as 50th anni? thanks!
Sure, they are the exact same except Gloss finish only (as you said) and none of the collateral items from the 50th Anniversary models are included. VOS or Aged finishes can be ordered through Made 2 Measure, however.
 

PierM

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Also new batch of '68 seems not using the nylon saddles ABR1.
 

Scream And Fly

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I need somebody to explain to me exactly how the Historic-spec wiring will “increase dynamic range”. I’d love to know how they’re measuring dynamic range, and why more modern wiring reduces it. I’m sure Gibson will provide some marketing-speak as an answer, without any real basis in fact.

I’m not looking to intentionally poke at Gibson, because I’ve purchased many new Gibson guitars and I’ve loved almost all of them. The issue for me is the never-ending stream of Gibson PR jibberish that has been assualting their customers for decades, which most often turned out to be either an answer to a nonexistent problem or bogus technical innovations (self-tuning Les Pauls, Firebird X) or simply BS altogether. Because Gibson over the years has been very good at convincing their customers about what “better” means.
 

mrfett

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I need somebody to explain to me exactly how the Historic-spec wiring will “increase dynamic range”.
It’s pretty simple, they’re referencing past potentiometers with values lower than 500k. The marketing-speak is misleading only because historic instruments have been using 500k pots for a while. In previous decades though the values could be much lower, reducing high end. That’s why if you take an older Les Paul and replace the wiring harness with 500k pots the guitar immediately sounds less muddy.
 

matkoehler

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I need somebody to explain to me exactly how the Historic-spec wiring will “increase dynamic range”. I’d love to know how they’re measuring dynamic range, and why more modern wiring reduces it. I’m sure Gibson will provide some marketing-speak as an answer, without any real basis in fact.

I’m not looking to intentionally poke at Gibson, because I’ve purchased many new Gibson guitars and I’ve loved almost all of them. The issue for me is the never-ending stream of Gibson PR jibberish that has been assualting their customers for decades, which most often turned out to be either an answer to a nonexistent problem or bogus technical innovations (self-tuning Les Pauls, Firebird X) or simply BS altogether. Because Gibson over the years has been very good at convincing their customers about what “better” means.
Not better, just different. That hang tag layout and the writing/terminology was extremely vintage-inspired. Much of the text was borrowed from 1950s Gibson catalogs, Gazettes and tags. Specifically, the "increased dynamic range" comment is a throwback to the original Humbucker "orange tag" description from 1957. All that to say -- there is indeed increased dynamic range in these new wiring harnesses, but not by the value of the pots...500K is what they were before. The new taper of the potentiometers is what allows the increased versatility...audio taper versus the previous linear taper for a less dramatic drop off from 10-to-1. Makes it really easy to clean up your tone and retain clarity.

But as I said it's just different...not better. Obviously the guitars we made previously were fantastic. It's been the longstanding tradition of Custom Shop to push the limits of our instruments every year. We have to keep improving and diversifying our product range in order to survive...and personally I'd like Gibson to survive! :) Thanks for the great questions.
 

PierM

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The new taper of the potentiometers is what allows the increased versatility...audio taper versus the previous linear taper for a less dramatic drop off from 10-to-1. Makes it really easy to clean up your tone and retain clarity.
Probably I misendurstood the phrase, but historics were already using the ‘historic 500K audiotaper pot’ (PPAT-059). I dont have linear pots in any of my historics.


“From Gibson Guitar’s Historic Re-issue guitars come Gibson Gear’s new Historic Spec series – parts that have been specially designed to replicate the original parts used by Gibson in the late 1950s. This Historic Gibson 500K Audio Taper Potentiometer has been designed to be vintage-accurate, specifically in terms of its dramatic audio taper. With a dynamic sweep from 1 to 10, you’ll notice a difference on every single level. For anyone who's ever said, "They don't make 'em like they used to," here's some proof to the contrary.”


Gibson Item No. - PPAT-059
 
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matkoehler

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Probably I misendurstood the phrase, but historics were already using the ‘historic 500K audiotaper pot’ (PPAT-059). I dont have linear pots in any of my historics.


“From Gibson Guitar’s Historic Re-issue guitars come Gibson Gear’s new Historic Spec series – parts that have been specially designed to replicate the original parts used by Gibson in the late 1950s. This Historic Gibson 500K Audio Taper Potentiometer has been designed to be vintage-accurate, specifically in terms of its dramatic audio taper. With a dynamic sweep from 1 to 10, you’ll notice a difference on every single level. For anyone who's ever said, "They don't make 'em like they used to," here's some proof to the contrary.”


Gibson Item No. - PPAT-059
Ah yes I shouldn’t have said linear...that’s my mistake. I know we did completely change the tolerance spec and taper type...I will have the details on Monday of what potentiometer specs we had and what we use now. Again...not better just different! :) Thank you.
 

PierM

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Thanks for the clarification, much appreciated. :)
 

Gold Tone

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Ah

Thanks so much for clarifying Mat. The implication seemed to be that previous to this year all pots were linear. I know that none of my recent (pre 2019) histories came with linear pots...all are audio

Thanks again
 

matkoehler

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Ah

Thanks so much for clarifying Mat. The implication seemed to be that previous to this year all pots were linear. I know that none of my recent (pre 2019) histories came with linear pots...all are audio

Thanks again
I wish I could say that gathering the past CS potentiometer info was a simple & elegant process. But it turns out it was a big can of worms! In the last decade, CS has changed pot specs a lot more often than I thought...half a dozen times it seems. And we did source linear pots in that period, but I still can't figure out for what purpose. What I can tell you is the reason for switching to the current (2019) pots is because myself and many other CS employees were unhappy with the usability and volume range of the Historic Reissue pots we had. They tended to be a little hit-or-miss (not unlike the originals). We were hoping to get more range, clarity, and consistency if possible. So we compared to a number of different taper types and pot types. Before, we were using 550K resistance pots with an A taper (not 500K, contrary to popular belief). The new ones are 500K resistance with a B taper. There are also some differences in construction characteristics which, I'm told, can positively affect the clarity at lower volumes. Whatever the case, those pots always ended up winning in our internal tests. I am SO HAPPY with them and it's easy for me to hear the difference in clarity between last year and this year -- especially with volume knobs turned down. The unpotted pickups and Bumblebees help too I'm sure. But that said, the exploration into Potentiometer Land has only just begun...if I had my way we would source 100% accurate (visually and internally) 1950s Centralab replicas, so that's a Historic quest for the coming years. But as far as the tone and usability of the current Historic Reissue wiring harnesses, I could not be more pleased...I know my coworkers would agree. We want our reissues to be the best pure instruments made today and we feel these changes help push the limit and raise the bar.
 

cmcgov

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I wish I could say that gathering the past CS potentiometer info was a simple & elegant process. But it turns out it was a big can of worms! In the last decade, CS has changed pot specs a lot more often than I thought...half a dozen times it seems. And we did source linear pots in that period, but I still can't figure out for what purpose. What I can tell you is the reason for switching to the current (2019) pots is because myself and many other CS employees were unhappy with the usability and volume range of the Historic Reissue pots we had. They tended to be a little hit-or-miss (not unlike the originals). We were hoping to get more range, clarity, and consistency if possible. So we compared to a number of different taper types and pot types. Before, we were using 550K resistance pots with an A taper (not 500K, contrary to popular belief). The new ones are 500K resistance with a B taper. There are also some differences in construction characteristics which, I'm told, can positively affect the clarity at lower volumes. Whatever the case, those pots always ended up winning in our internal tests. I am SO HAPPY with them and it's easy for me to hear the difference in clarity between last year and this year -- especially with volume knobs turned down. The unpotted pickups and Bumblebees help too I'm sure. But that said, the exploration into Potentiometer Land has only just begun...if I had my way we would source 100% accurate (visually and internally) 1950s Centralab replicas, so that's a Historic quest for the coming years. But as far as the tone and usability of the current Historic Reissue wiring harnesses, I could not be more pleased...I know my coworkers would agree. We want our reissues to be the best pure instruments made today and we feel these changes help push the limit and raise the bar.
They're solid. Thanks.
 

freebyrd 69

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I wish I could say that gathering the past CS potentiometer info was a simple & elegant process. But it turns out it was a big can of worms! In the last decade, CS has changed pot specs a lot more often than I thought...half a dozen times it seems. And we did source linear pots in that period, but I still can't figure out for what purpose. What I can tell you is the reason for switching to the current (2019) pots is because myself and many other CS employees were unhappy with the usability and volume range of the Historic Reissue pots we had. They tended to be a little hit-or-miss (not unlike the originals). We were hoping to get more range, clarity, and consistency if possible. So we compared to a number of different taper types and pot types. Before, we were using 550K resistance pots with an A taper (not 500K, contrary to popular belief). The new ones are 500K resistance with a B taper. There are also some differences in construction characteristics which, I'm told, can positively affect the clarity at lower volumes. Whatever the case, those pots always ended up winning in our internal tests. I am SO HAPPY with them and it's easy for me to hear the difference in clarity between last year and this year -- especially with volume knobs turned down. The unpotted pickups and Bumblebees help too I'm sure. But that said, the exploration into Potentiometer Land has only just begun...if I had my way we would source 100% accurate (visually and internally) 1950s Centralab replicas, so that's a Historic quest for the coming years. But as far as the tone and usability of the current Historic Reissue wiring harnesses, I could not be more pleased...I know my coworkers would agree. We want our reissues to be the best pure instruments made today and we feel these changes help push the limit and raise the bar.
Great post! Great news!
 

zombiwoof

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I wish I could say that gathering the past CS potentiometer info was a simple & elegant process. But it turns out it was a big can of worms! In the last decade, CS has changed pot specs a lot more often than I thought...half a dozen times it seems. And we did source linear pots in that period, but I still can't figure out for what purpose. What I can tell you is the reason for switching to the current (2019) pots is because myself and many other CS employees were unhappy with the usability and volume range of the Historic Reissue pots we had. They tended to be a little hit-or-miss (not unlike the originals). We were hoping to get more range, clarity, and consistency if possible. So we compared to a number of different taper types and pot types. Before, we were using 550K resistance pots with an A taper (not 500K, contrary to popular belief). The new ones are 500K resistance with a B taper. There are also some differences in construction characteristics which, I'm told, can positively affect the clarity at lower volumes. Whatever the case, those pots always ended up winning in our internal tests. I am SO HAPPY with them and it's easy for me to hear the difference in clarity between last year and this year -- especially with volume knobs turned down. The unpotted pickups and Bumblebees help too I'm sure. But that said, the exploration into Potentiometer Land has only just begun...if I had my way we would source 100% accurate (visually and internally) 1950s Centralab replicas, so that's a Historic quest for the coming years. But as far as the tone and usability of the current Historic Reissue wiring harnesses, I could not be more pleased...I know my coworkers would agree. We want our reissues to be the best pure instruments made today and we feel these changes help push the limit and raise the bar.
How about the pots on the core line?. Have they been upgraded also?. Those seem to be all over the place, too, some have 500k, some 300k, audio, linear, etc.
Al
 

Tim Plains

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We’ve done correct solid slab 1-piece bodies on 1950s Reissue LPCs for at least as long as I’ve been at Custom Shop.
Yes, but not all. I had a 2010 that had a separate mahogany top. You could tell looking in the control cavity.

The 2013 20th anniversary 57 Customs were (I believe) the only ones spec'd to all have one piece bodies...and the farce advertising of being the last run of ebony boards.

Aside from that, it was a guessing game as to whether your LPC would be one piece or have a glued on top. It's an important feature for many, and should be standard given the cost of them, hopefully it is standard now.
 

matkoehler

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If it’s a 50s Reissue, it gets a solid slab Mahogany body. No exceptions. Can’t speak for 2010...well before my time at Custom. Best, Mat

Yes, but not all. I had a 2010 that had a separate mahogany top. You could tell looking in the control cavity.

The 2013 20th anniversary 57 Customs were (I believe) the only ones spec'd to all have one piece bodies...and the farce advertising of being the last run of ebony boards.

Aside from that, it was a guessing game as to whether your LPC would be one piece or have a glued on top. It's an important feature for many, and should be standard given the cost of them, hopefully it is standard now.
 

jktxs

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Yes, but not all. I had a 2010 that had a separate mahogany top. You could tell looking in the control cavity.
Yeah the older ones (2010 and before I think) are top + back. Older catalogs state it too:

There's also a 2010 Musikmesse video where the Gibson rep says the 50th anniv. 1960 custom is the first historic custom model with a one piece body.
 

Curlymaple

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My 2007 LPB7 has one piece top. Yeah, above, it should say top, like on the neck construction “1piece.” What a cluster fvck!
 

Curlymaple

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Would love to see the vintage style rolled TR cover for custom with correct font. Pm if you have one. CreamTone never got back to me, oh well.
 




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