Epiphone "Les Paul Custom" vs. Greco Mint Collection EGC?

EG700

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Can anyone comment about whether is there much to choose between one of the Fujigen MIJ Epiphone LPCs, and a late-'80s Greco EGC? What considerations should be taken into account, when choosing one over the other?
 

wulfman

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I have had a few of the Epi Standard LPs and would say they are on par with the later 80's Grecos. The pickups are fairly generic though. The only difference in specs is the Epi LPs have a 1-piece neck with no heel (at least the standards did).
 

nopea

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I have played several Grecos in stores but never actually bought one (yet of course :cool:) only because something else would seem a better deal at the time.

I do have (since 1999) a Fujigen Epiphone SG (61 style) and I would say they are on par with Gibson 61 Reissue (which was the only 61 style SG that Gibson had in 1999). I agree that the pickups on generic, but I would also add 'safe' to that description list as they sound right in the middle of the road and make them a great platform to tone shape outside the guitar. The MIJ stuff does use Gotoh hardware, which I think is of much better quality than Ping Works hardware which is what Gibson mostly uses these days.

However my Epiphone SG was from a line that was only available domestically for about 2 years (1998~2000) and I believe they were left over Orville stock simply relabeled Epiphone. The Elitist series that followed are slight different and I have no played one so I cannot comment on those.
 

EG700

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Thanks! This is good and knowlegable feedback. I think I might find Screamin' pups "generic" too?
 

EG700

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Well, is this a fair and accurate indication of market discernment? Yesterday on Yahoo Japan, in three auctions that all expired within 30 mins of each other, here are hammer prices for the following in roughly equivalent and fairly good condition:

1. Greco EGC-75 Mint Collection serial 0 2057 (Fujigen?) with hard case: JPY 64,000

2. Epiphone LPC-80 serial 007051 (Fujigen?) with hard case: JPY 74,000

3. Epiphone "2004" Les Paul Custom serial F402525 (Fujigen? LQ?) with Tom Holmes Japan J455 and PAF #2 pickups (seller's photos show a white hand-written "H" inside the pick-up cavity), soft case: JPY 88,000

The F-serial one, alleged by the seller to be a "2004" model - is this an LQ? Or not?

I ask because the Epiphone-wiki states that LQs are only 2005-2007. However owners have proudly showed photos of their "2004 LQ" in the MIJ LQ thread https://www.mylespaul.com/threads/the-mij-epiphone-lq-series-thread.407805/
 

nopea

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It could be that the guitar was made in 2004 (the serial number to me says it was made in June of 2004) and the series rolled out in 2005. Often the years published for a series are estimates based on catalogs and price lists. Somethings could be released before or after these dates.
 

EG700

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It could be that the guitar was made in 2004 (the serial number to me says it was made in June of 2004) and the series rolled out in 2005. Often the years published for a series are estimates based on catalogs and price lists. Somethings could be released before or after these dates.

That makes sense. In the classic motorcycle collecting world, it's well known that production of 1962 catalog-spec Triumph Bonnevilles (for example) would have commenced in September of 1961 after the workforce all got back from their August summer holidays, and the company's target was to get the majority of bikes into dealerships in time for the US Eastern Seaboard selling season of March-April.
 

EG700

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Wulfman, I know from past postings that you've had Tom Holmes pickups before, but have you had them in a Les Paul?

What were they like?

Is it "normal" to put one in an Epiphone Les Paul?

And how about this "Patent Applied For" that it's been paired with? Is there any way by looking to know from whence it came, or made by whom? Is it my imagination, or are there a lot of replica PAFs around nowadays with black stickers on them?


epi 3.JPG
 

wulfman

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The THC pickup is one made in Japan under license from Tom Holmes. I’ve never tried one but if Tom Holmes shared the secret sauce with the Japanese company making these they should be a decent pickup. The Gibson has a #2 in it so maybe it is a Burstbucker. That’s all I got.
 

EG700

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The THC pickup is one made in Japan under license from Tom Holmes. I’ve never tried one but if Tom Holmes shared the secret sauce with the Japanese company making these they should be a decent pickup. The Gibson has a #2 in it so maybe it is a Burstbucker. That’s all I got.

Wulfman, what you got is most useful. Thanks for sharing.

First I should come clean and confess that my interest here is driven by the fact that it is I who went crazy with the bidding to secure this "Appears to be an LQ", steeling myself to forego the less-expensive (and with more-obvious bona fides) EGC-75 and LPC-80 in the process.

For the alleged "PAF #2", I just want to narrow it down to "who made it?"

On-line research brings up sources like "10 Best PAF replica" articles with reviews of black-stickered pups that in most cases were NOT made by the G-company. Not a criticism necessarily, but if a guitar comes along to a new owner bearing a pup with no identifying marks apart from that black rectangular sticker and a tag saying "#2", then what meaning can one safely extract from that?

You are inclined to the view that this particular one is indeed a G-company pup? One of fairly recent vintage?
 

EG700

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My Exrubato came equipped with the Tom Holmes J pups and I am super impressed.

Thanks for your comment. I have ZERO experience of these, so right now can only parrot the Tom Holmes threads hereabouts on this site. These include a posting of a telephone interview transcript with the great man himself. Apparently someone from Japan was sent to USA to be joined at the hip with him until he judged them worthy of winding pups that his name could be licensed onto. That Japan's discerning shredders were willing to pay high prices and tolerate waiting times to get their hands on MIJ-THC pups is probably useful supporting evidence of their goodness, in addition to testimony like yours, and like this: http://the-electric-guitar-blog.blogspot.com/2010/01/tom-holmes-japan-j450-j455-pickups.html
 

wulfman

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For sure that is a Gibson. They used a white sticker like that for a while. I’m not up on the fine details of years of Gibson pickups but I think it is in the past 10-15 years. I see that style in the picture of Gibby pickups here.
 

EG700

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For sure that is a Gibson. They used a white sticker like that for a while. I’m not up on the fine details of years of Gibson pickups but I think it is in the past 10-15 years. I see that style in the picture of Gibby pickups here.

Wulfman, you are absolutely right. Again. Thanks. I've not dealt much at all with Gibsons or their hardware.

And thanks for hinting that, when faced with the pressure situation of bidding on either an EGC-75, LCD-80 or LQ in simultaneous auctions ending only minutes apart, the best call might be to focus upon the LQ.

Am quite looking forward to receiving this guitar. Love the un-mutilated head stock, with Epi logo. I never knew these LQs or LCDs existed, until now. That it already has pups which are not "generic" is an icing on the cake!

epi 1.JPG epi 2.JPG epi 5.JPG
 

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