Difference between Trad. Pro-III versus Std. Plus Top Pro?

briansayler

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I have been weighing which electric guitar to buy for a while now. I need some advice from the experienced folks in this forum.

My inspiration for wanting to play is Slash of Guns N' Roses. I am a GnR superfan, which is not to say that I wouldn't like to learn other material too.

Here are a few quick factors in the decision calculus:

1. I can't play guitar much at all (yet). I can strum about 5 or 6 open chords and play a C major scale, that's it. I have no musical skill or talent. No sophistication.

2. I was super excited about the new Gibson USA Slash models, but I can't justify the price when I can barely play a note.

3. I have watched a ton of videos on the B&G Little Sister Crossroads and I love it and the way it sounds. Still, can't justify that price either.

4. I have basically narrowed my decision down to an Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus Top Pro in green burst and an Epiphone Les Paul Traditional Pro-III Limited Edition in Ocean Blue. I am dazzled by the aesthetics of both.

5. I'm probably only going to own one electric guitar, I can't see myself ever being anything other than someone who plays around at home for pleasure. I don't think I'll ever play in a band or anything. Because I'll probably only ever own one, I want to be sure I get the right one.

So my questions are:

1. What are the differences between these two models? Will one sound or feel substantially different from the other? Weight, neck shape, etc?

2. Will quality control be substantially better on one or the other (fret buzz and so on)?

3. Should I be considering anything else?

Thanks in advance.

-Brian-
 

tzd

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The two models are quite different.

The Traditional Pro III has a rounder/fatter neck that is satin finished. Honestly I'm not a fan of the Epiphone satin finished neck, they do not feel as good as Gibson's satin/worn finish.

The Standard Plustop Pro has a slim neck in gloss finish. Although not the exact same neck profile as a Gibson Slash Les Paul, Slash's Les Pauls typically have a slimmer neck so this comes closer to it.

If it were me I would choose the Plustop Pro between these two. You should also consider the Tribute Plus model, largely regarded as the best Epiphone model out there.
 

DrBGood

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Apart from neck shape, at your level ANY Epiphone LP will be great to learn on. THAT feature alone should guide you for now. Both those guitars are basically built the same. Don't fuss over electronics and/or pickups, it's all good.

Important factor here: what is your amp ?

If it's a small solid state amp, you will never see a tonal difference between any carved top Epiphone LPs you choose. You can make a cheap guitar sound great in a good amp, but you'll never make an expensive guitar sound the same in a cheap amp.

So, my suggestion is to go try the Traditionnal for its neck shape/size. You can try most any other models for the Slim Taper D neck that is on the Standard. Once you know which neck shape you want, it is much easier to find a nice looking one.
 

briansayler

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Thanks for the info. Also, I notice that the Traditional Pro-III has a slot for a 9 volt battery. I guess it has a "boost" feature. I'm not too familiar with what that would do.

What makes the Tribute model better than the others? Based on what I read on the site you linked, I'm guessing it's just the pickups and other components?

As far as an amp, I own a small Peavey practice amp that I've had for over 25 years. It was a high school graduation present that has been gathering dust. If I need a different one, I'm perfectly willing to make that investment too.

I've never compared neck shapes. I have small hands, which I would guess would point me in the direction of a slim one, but I don't really know.
 

fry

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it has a "boost" feature. I'm not too familiar with what that would do.
Well, it does probably just what you think, boosts the output. On a tube amplifier, it would hit the front end and send it into overdrive a little sooner, not sure how a solid-state amp would react. A buddy of mine had a Gibson with the boost feature, and it was pretty cool.
 

DrBGood

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What makes the Tribute model better than the others? Based on what I read on the site you linked, I'm guessing it's just the pickups and other components?
The Tribute Plus is the best in almost eveything, it is basically a Gibson with a different headstock and finish. But it might not be what you want/need. I had one for a while and I let it go, because of its too slim neck. Sounded great, but I'm fine with the "lower grade" guitars I have.

As far as an amp, I own a small Peavey practice amp that I've had for over 25 years.
Maybe first visit a peavey forum or something and ask around about how to get the best out of your amp. https://forums.peavey.com/

That will be a real hard thing to figure out. IF you ask, you'll get tons of "best amp ever" suggestions and you'll go crazy trying to decide.
Your choice of a new amp (if you decide to go that way) will first be regarding the price. What is your budget ?
Second will be how loud do you want it to be, because there are real good sounding small practice amps out there that aren't loud at all.
What I would suggest is a small modeling amp. These will simulate all the best amps on the market, so you'll get an idea of what direction you want to eventually go to find your own tone. You don't need to go new for this, there are plenty good used amps out there for half of their new in store prices.
 

paruwi

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You should also consider the Tribute Plus model, largely regarded as the best Epiphone model out there.

The Tribute Plus is the best in almost eveything, it is basically a Gibson with a different headstock and finish.

This ^^

EpiWeb_Tribute800x620.jpg
 

gsmacleod

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As far as an amp, I own a small Peavey practice amp that I've had for over 25 years. It was a high school graduation present that has been gathering dust. If I need a different one, I'm perfectly willing to make that investment too.

Depending on the amp, many of the Transtube Peaveys were pretty decent. I started with a Studiopro 112 about 20 years ago and still play it on occasion. I never made friends with the Rage or Blazer models but depending on your intended style, if that's what you have, it will very likely be serviceable. If it's one of the slightly bigger ones, Envoy or Studiopro, while not high end, they'll cover a lot of ground.

Shane
 

mrBrianc

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I really like the gold top traditional pro. It has a meatier 50s style neck but I think they have similiar pickups in the guitars.
 

briansayler

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So, in looking at the Tribute Plus, I've noticed that its push-pull control knobs apparently do something different than other guitars. Most I've looked at employ the push-pull to do "coil splitting", but the Tribute Plus uses them to change between "series and parallel". What's that? I watched a video demo but I couldn't hear a difference at all between series and parallel.
 

fry

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So, in looking at the Tribute Plus, I've noticed that its push-pull control knobs apparently do something different than other guitars. Most I've looked at employ the push-pull to do "coil splitting", but the Tribute Plus uses them to change between "series and parallel". What's that? I watched a video demo but I couldn't hear a difference at all between series and parallel.
This is a reply to the same question that I borrowed from the Gibson forum. I think it sort of explains it as well as I could have.


“as I understand it, coil tapping (or coil splitting) involves actually shutting off one of the two coils, so only 1 coil is audible. It is a true single coil sound, and it has the normal single coil hum.



Whereas in series/parallel switching, both coils are always on and audible. Series is the normal setting for a humbucker. The signal of one coil passes to the next one, making a fat sound. In parallel, both coils fire at the same time but do not pass from coil to the other. It produces a more single coil type of sound (while still humbucking).”
 

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