Gibson or another Epiphone?

Crusader

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Go the Gibson and check it over thoroughly before you buy it, simple
 

Oig

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Gibson QC varies but I think your chances of finding a true dog are pretty small. I have three Les Pauls, and they're all very well built, great playing instruments. While none of them is as immaculately built as my PRS, they all get played more. My 2019 Special gives the PRS a good run for it's money in terms of build quality, it's only a little let doiwn by some slop in the cavities. It's a very tightly built guitar.

Re Epiphone, I'm super tempted by the "Inspired by" line myself....but I reckon if you spring for that over the Gibson, you'll always have that little voice in your head saying you need the real deal. That's what the one in my head kept saying anyway!
 

Adinol

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Regarding QC issues, it really depends on the issues and what issues you can deal with (or eliminate after you get the guitar).

I recently bought an ES-335 but had to go through a few before settling on which one to buy. There were just silly things that should never have come out of the factory.

Then I bought a tribusrst Les Paul because it was spectacular but not over the top. There are issues, but I can deal with them at some later time, when I have time. Until then, it plays. The issues are some uneven frets 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th that I have to level off and recrown. I'm a full time tech and never seem to have time to work on my own gear, LOL.

It is interesting that there would be uneven frets after PLEK-ing. So, I believe the frets must have moved. That being the case, I'll have to do more than just spot level. In fact I'll have to wick some low viscosity CA glue to held them down before spot leveling.

So, the issues in my case, are fine for me, as I can just fix and that way the guitar becomes even more "mine". But I can see how that's annoying for any buyer that's not a tech.
 

dice.K

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Wait, OP, do you REALLY think Epiphones are better? Have you for God’s sake ever played a Gibson in your entire life? Or even seen one with your own eyes?
I mean no offence, seriously. But couldn’t you just at least compare them?

Why prefer swimming in a tiny pool while knowing there’s an ocean right before you?
 

zdoggie

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I bought an epi explorer for cheap was advertised as a korina guitar turns out its a veneer korina, weighs a young ton,
and didn't play well above the 12 fret, so I put my luthier hat on and began a very careful fret re/work filing It seemed
it took for ever to get to half ass play above the 12 my advise is if you buy an epi be sure to play it before you buyI also found the electronics to be quite inferior.that being said there are good and bad on both sides it in my closet I have forgotten about this cluster ,wouldn't hesitate to gig it and hope for a beer bottle throwing melee lol!
zdog
 

sixstringer99

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I have the same issue. I have an Epiphone Les Paul 60 Tribute Plus and it's a great guitar but it does not sound as good as a Gibson, so I decided to buy a Gibson. The new Gibson 60's Standard looks great to me but do I need to spend $2500+? I test drove many of these guitars at Sam Ash and GC and I did not see any quality issues. However, I ordered a new Gibson Les Paul Studio in Bourbon Burst instead. Less money but all of the Gibson sound. It should arrive this week.
 

Adinol

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Wait, OP, do you REALLY think Epiphones are better?
I guess I'm with you on this one. I never thought it made much sense to buy an Epiphone, if the objective was to have a guitar I'd really feel excited about owning and playing. I was never rolling in dough, but I always found a way to buy a Gibson and not look at Epiphones. One can spend thousands of dollars every year on stuff you can't even remember, like cab rides, waiter tips, rounds of drinks... etc. It jsut takes a bit of discipline to do away with all those unneeded expenses and put away some money for a guitar that will ultimately bring more joy.

Like I said earlier, I've had issues with Gibson guitars, just about every one of them, but it's really not impossible to choose and pick.

And if I had a choice between 3 Epiphones or 1 Gibson, well... no brainer there.
 

afireinside

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I currently have x2 2020 Heritage H150s (no weight relief). A 2014 Gibson traditional (no weight relief 59 tribute pickups) and a 2019 Epiphone 50s Les Paul (gotoh bridge, gibson tuners, Gibson 57 pickups and switchcraft switch). And i have a Midtown custom (pretty close to a LP)

I have had many other Gibson LPs including '18 standard, '17 trad, '16 trad another '14 trad and a '18 classic.

Now the Epi is wonderful it is sooooooo close sound wise its scary (but mine is heavily modded) Finish is obviously very plastic feeling in comparison but it is great overall especially for the price. Love the neck profile.
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The Heritages are really another level 1pc genuine mahogany body (honduran mahogany), 9.5 lbs or less, great flame on the tops, supposedly real nitro i.e. less/no plasticizers. Great neck profiles (in between 50s/60s similar to my old 2017 trad "rounded neck") rich deep colors on the stain and titanium saddles/locking bridge. Sustains and sounds amazing. Been thinking about selling one but hard to decide. I became gluttonous and bought 2...... but cant part with either.
Screenshot_20210205-101433_Gallery.jpg
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2014 Traditional has no weight relief 59 tribute pickups (only used in 14 and 15) 9.5 lb. It has a huge baseball bat neck. And it is great also. But fit and finish is just much higher on the heritages.
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So i dont know i say buy 1 of each!
 

ArtWerkOrange

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I have to say that of my five Gibsons, three new used and one used, all have exceeded my expectations. For the record, they were not chosen from the land of Quadruple "A" Custom Reissues, but rather the entry point crowd. First, are my two stripped down rock machines (one modded and one stock), the Junior-esque CM with everybody's favorite Robo Tuning device, which I love. These two led me to the 2015 Junior with the single P-90 pickup. I recently picked up a brand new, beautiful Studio Cherry Burst and a used, but pristine SG. Of the new, they all were very well done with zero QC issues. The two used were not too far behind as far as quality standards. I have several Epiphones, with the most recent being a Crstwood. QC was off the rails BAD, but the high-end stuff like the Bonnamassa "Amos" V or even the Dave Rude (Tesla) were immaculate. Even the Crestwood, which was the worst guitar I have ever purchased, in terms of it's condition was fairly easy to fix and bring up to the standard I expect from Gibson and Epiphone. I do not think I would by a lower-end Epiphone, again. All that said, I am a huge Gibson fan on any price point.
 

Rogijimbex

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So I have a bit of cash coming and I would love to get one of the newer Les Paul Standard 50’s to go with my Epiphone LP Tribute Plus.
The thing holding me back is there still seems to be a lot of quality issues, at least what I’m reading here.
Is it a lot of nit picking or is there really still a ton of bad product coming out of Gibson.
I really love my Epiphone, plays great, no issues with quality, should I be safe and get another one of those instead? It’s one third the price of a Gibson and I think it’s a great guitar. But I would really love that 50’s Standard.

How do you all see the quality level these days?
I am with you on the Epiphone guitars - they're stunning. I have three Gibson Les Pauls (Standard, Special, Studio Lite) and two recent Epiphone Les Pauls (LP Tribute Plus - Rainbow, and a LP Custom Black Beauty with inspired by Gibson headstock) The Epi's are exceptional guitars for the money! Unless you just have to have the Gibson label on the headstock to feel authentic, which I get, the Epiphones are the absolute best made, best deal out there in my opinion. Additionally I had a R56 Gibson gold top (P90's) for a while, which was great, but I recently bought the $400 Inverness green Epiphone SG Classic with P90's and am astounded at the sound. Equally as good as the R56 sounded. Actually better when using both pickups together. Trouble is right now getting an Epiphone is slow going. I've had an SG Prophecy on order since December 2020. Still waiting. By the way the Epiphone Black Beauty is stunning - take a look at it online - just gorgeous and sound is the real thing. Good luck!
 

USTTRM

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I will put my 2 cents. The Epiphone 1959 is in a class by itself. You can’t compare it to anything other than it’s 2009 version and good luck finding someone willing to part with a 100% original one. They are unique and can’t be compared to even current Epiphones. A great direction for them to go but I think it will another decade before they do it again.
 

ScaryFatKidGT

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So I have a bit of cash coming and I would love to get one of the newer Les Paul Standard 50’s to go with my Epiphone LP Tribute Plus.
The thing holding me back is there still seems to be a lot of quality issues, at least what I’m reading here.
Is it a lot of nit picking or is there really still a ton of bad product coming out of Gibson.
I really love my Epiphone, plays great, no issues with quality, should I be safe and get another one of those instead? It’s one third the price of a Gibson and I think it’s a great guitar. But I would really love that 50’s Standard.

How do you all see the quality level these days?
Get a Gibby, just try it out in a store first. Most of Gibsons issues were 2018-2019, I have a 2018 Tribute and love it however.
 

Mcstrange

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I love my 60's tribute Gibson, it does everything I want it to do. Likewise Epiphone Sheraton 2 albeit with upgraded wiring and Entwistle HV58s (awesome pups!). But...have you considered other makers? There's a ton of really good, as in really good, LPs that kick ass, PRS, ESP, endless list really of great, well spec'ed guitars that play and sound feat.
 

TheWhigs

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For sure…it will be Gibson. If not I would go PRS. But I just really like a Gibson LP.

I miss the Studio model I had years ago and really want to replace it, as much as I find my Epiphone Tribute Plus a pretty close second. That really is a fine guitar for the price. Hell, everything but the wood is actual Gibson USA parts anyway.
But still….the Gibson brand is calling my name!
I have almost 1/2 dozen Jackson USA's. They play/sound phenomenally well and one can get get various versions to suit one's need.

I have a 1993 LPS - its one of my top 2 if my top LP's (out of 5 of them).
 

JamnThang

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So I have a bit of cash coming and I would love to get one of the newer Les Paul Standard 50’s to go with my Epiphone LP Tribute Plus.
The thing holding me back is there still seems to be a lot of quality issues, at least what I’m reading here.
Is it a lot of nit picking or is there really still a ton of bad product coming out of Gibson.
I really love my Epiphone, plays great, no issues with quality, should I be safe and get another one of those instead? It’s one third the price of a Gibson and I think it’s a great guitar. But I would really love that 50’s Standard.

How do you all see the quality level these days?
I have and recommend Epiphone's 2020 introduced Inspired by Gibson 1959 Les Paul Outfit. Comes with Epiphone's best yet hardshell case; all Gibson USA Pickups, Electronics, switches and controls.... For $799. The are often backordered, as mine was; and worth the wait. I didn't care for its "aged finish", which was simply a gloss that had not been buffed to a shine.

Therefore I simply used the Carnauba Wax Polish among my several Dunlop 65 Treatment Kit products; rubbed it on and in; and buffed it to a beautiful good-as-Gibson gloss luster.

I promise you'll find it to be the finest Epiphone you have bought so far; and its Gibson USA Burstbucker Pickups give you everything you look for in a REAL LES PAUL. Just buy it, even if you must wait... You'll be glad you did!!!
 

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Six6String6

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No offence, but I really don’t get why people bother to buy an Epiphone Les Paul when they have enough money to afford a Gibson.

OP, it’s not like you already have some Gibsons and thinking buying a very cheap guitar again might be kind of interesting, is it? Then why ANOTHER Epiphone?
Take your Epiphone to the store with you and compare it with a Gibson.

Quality issues? Of course Gibson guitars have quality issues! Not nearly as many as Epiphone guitars do, though! :rolleyes:
And you know what? Musical instruments are for PLAYING. Not for hanging them on the wall and enjoy watching them all day long.
Not sure if you own any current Epi models but many will tell you that their quality it very highly rated these days. At around $1100 CDN in a higher end one you are getting a guitar fitted with ALL the same pickups and hardware that a good USA built Gibson has. Authentic Gibson ‘57 pickups,
Mallory caps, Switch craft switch, etc. Look it up.
Almost everything is USA Gibson.
I have A/B ‘ed my Epiphone Tribute Plus with my new Gibson and I’ll tell you, the Epi is one fine playing Guitar.

And they don’t hang on my wall. Even though I do conceder them works of art.
No worries, no offence taken. I just felt like defending Epiphone as the current top of the line models are in fact very, very good.
 

Six6String6

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Wait, OP, do you REALLY think Epiphones are better? Have you for God’s sake ever played a Gibson in your entire life? Or even seen one with your own eyes?
I mean no offence, seriously. But couldn’t you just at least compare them?

Why prefer swimming in a tiny pool while knowing there’s an ocean right before you?
I never said better, did I?
And I have owned one in the past, and I own one now. I have played them back to back. Better, I never claimed that. But very good? Yes and I stand by that.
 

shark

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Ive never had much if any trouble at all with any Gibson Ive ever owned. Cant say about Epiphones as Ive never cared to own one.

people should look at the pictures in forums more :).
wall of paul.jpg
 
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Shelkonnery

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Honestly, the new Epiphones might have stepped up their game lately.
But I'm too biased, I haven't had great experiences with them.

For that kind of money ($800-1000) I'd go for a tried and true 90s-00s Gibson Studio.
I love used guitars.

I was never happy with Epis playing loud live music and in recording sessions.
They sound dull and flavorless, like a default humbucker guitar. Don't cut greatly through the mix either. Not to mention subpar tuning stability and a generic neck carve. But maybe for rehearsals and bedroom practice they will do.

Never had any of the problems mentioned with a Gibson, quite the opposite really.
 
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