Les Paul Classic vs Les Paul Standard - Which feels better?

j_ambitious

Junior Member
Joined
Dec 20, 2010
Messages
19
Reaction score
18
Ok so I had a 2019 Les Paul Classic in Ebony and loved the guitar. Due to COVID related financial reasons I sold the guitar in January but will soon be in the market for its replacement. I've played a few Classics at GC, Sam Ash and other stores. While at Sam Ash I tried a Gold Top Standard. It blew me away. I didn't care for the 50s neck as I prefer the 60s but it just felt *right*. I couldn't explain why. I compared it back to back to a Classic and still came away with the Standard just feeling and sounding right to me. I was annoyed.

Since then I've tried several Standards and Classics and just feel like the Standards *feel* better to me. I'm not sure if it's the weight relief (I like them a little heavier) or the hand wiring (I keep reading that there is no real difference between the PCB and hand wiring but why do I feel like I can hear one?). Has anyone else experienced this? Now to be fair, I love Piano Black and currently only the Classic offers this color (except for the Gibson Exclusives which is sold out) so I'd have to settle for a burst of some kind.

But going back to my original question, everything else seems to be the same. So why does the Standard both feel and sound better to me?
 

Musha Ring

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2017
Messages
401
Reaction score
577
Les Paul Traditionals feel best to me. I've owned Standards, Classics, Traditionals, and Studios. The specs and neck profile of the Traditional is exactly what I'm looking for in an LP and the neck on my 2016 Trad is the nicest neck I've ever played on an electric guitar. It feels like home.

Between the two models you specifically mentioned, I prefer the Classic because I'm a traditionalist and I personally don't see the added value in the Standard model.

Now, if you're talking the new Standard 50s or 60s, either are very fine models and I like them both equally. But I personally will always take a 50s neck over a 60s given the option, but I prefer the pickups in the 60s model because they suit my taste better.
 

Shelkonnery

Silver Supporting Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2021
Messages
302
Reaction score
598
Exactly! I think you kind of answered your own question.
You got to test both models more than once and found your favorite specs.
(Neck profile and pickup combination that is).
That's what it looks like to me. :cheers:
 

Zylo

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2020
Messages
614
Reaction score
807
Ok so I had a 2019 Les Paul Classic in Ebony and loved the guitar. Due to COVID related financial reasons I sold the guitar in January but will soon be in the market for its replacement. I've played a few Classics at GC, Sam Ash and other stores. While at Sam Ash I tried a Gold Top Standard. It blew me away. I didn't care for the 50s neck as I prefer the 60s but it just felt *right*. I couldn't explain why. I compared it back to back to a Classic and still came away with the Standard just feeling and sounding right to me. I was annoyed.

Since then I've tried several Standards and Classics and just feel like the Standards *feel* better to me. I'm not sure if it's the weight relief (I like them a little heavier) or the hand wiring (I keep reading that there is no real difference between the PCB and hand wiring but why do I feel like I can hear one?). Has anyone else experienced this? Now to be fair, I love Piano Black and currently only the Classic offers this color (except for the Gibson Exclusives which is sold out) so I'd have to settle for a burst of some kind.

But going back to my original question, everything else seems to be the same. So why does the Standard both feel and sound better to me?

well the standard seems better to you, in the same way some prefer ketchup whilst others prefer Mayo

who gives a F. what you like is what you like..
 

diogoguitar

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 31, 2014
Messages
457
Reaction score
401
there is nothing fundamentally better in the standard vs the classic.

About weight relief: I remember having the same reaction on a previous generation of the standard which had ultra modern weight relief. Granted, that guitar wasn't a good sample because it was sitting on the dealer for nearly 3 years and had super old strings. I ended up buying a LP Modern, which has the same weight relief , and I love it. It's a keeper for literally decades to come.

let your hands be the judge
 
Last edited:
Joined
May 13, 2019
Messages
47
Reaction score
126
Pickups and neck feel will be the most obvious differences. Although the Classic has weight relief, most I’ve seen have very similar weights to the Standards with no weight relief. Go figure.

If you like the feel and sound of the 50s Gold Top, go with your gut and grab that one. I did and couldn’t be happier!
 

j_ambitious

Junior Member
Joined
Dec 20, 2010
Messages
19
Reaction score
18
Pickups and neck feel will be the most obvious differences. Although the Classic has weight relief, most I’ve seen have very similar weights to the Standards with no weight relief. Go figure.

If you like the feel and sound of the 50s Gold Top, go with your gut and grab that one. I did and couldn’t be happier!
So this is something else that I've found odd. The claim is that the Classics are weight relieved to be lighter but they're often the same weight as Classics with the weight relief. What gives lol.

Do you guys know if Guitar Center or Sweetwater take anything off of Standards or Classics or are they strictly MSRP? I bought my last one off of Reverb but not sure if I want to risk that again.
 

rjwilson37

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 30, 2010
Messages
6,920
Reaction score
4,888
+1 It doesn't matter which one, just grab the one that feels best in your hands. Even playing 5 different Standard 60's neck LP's, each will feel a little bit different, because the setup might be a little different. They may even sound different, because of different Pickup heights. If you find one you Gel with and don't want to put it down... be it Classic or Standard, just grab it and run. :jam:
 
Last edited:

JMP

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2019
Messages
1,208
Reaction score
1,511
Based on your post, it sounds like you prefer the Standard. I recommend a Standard! Buy one, never sell it, rock on!
 
Joined
May 13, 2019
Messages
47
Reaction score
126
A lot of good advice in this thread, yes. I definitely agree that not every 50s or 60s Standard neck is going to feel the same. My 50s neck doesn’t feel overly chunky, definitely manageable for my average hand size. If you found the guitar you like, don’t worry about what the specs may say on paper, just snatch it up.

Regarding the question on pricing from the larger stores, not sure if they’ll budge. I bought from a family owned place and they preemptively offered me the 50s Gold Top for $2,100.
 

Prospector

Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jul 27, 2015
Messages
277
Reaction score
205
Definitely buy the one that feels and sounds best to YOU. In this instance, it’s clearly the Standard. Grab it and play it!
 

sonar1

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 7, 2011
Messages
20,029
Reaction score
69,605
The ‘60’s Standard has a slimmer neck than the ‘50’s, also AlNiCo V magnets in the Burstbuckers vs AlNiCo II in the Burstbucker I & II of the ‘50’s Standard.
 

jstarr823

Starr Guitar Works
Joined
Aug 14, 2011
Messages
5,750
Reaction score
9,861
Every guitar is different. Every player is different. There’s no one formula that determines which is model is better.
 

ARandall

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2012
Messages
16,132
Reaction score
13,438
Adding to the above.......

There is no objective better fullstop.....just to start with.
Most of what qualifies as better to any one player or member here is due to things like neck profile, a quality setup and pickups that suit your playing style. As these are either modular(electronics) or possible in any level guitar (neck profile, setup) it becomes meaningless to recommend anything as we are physically incapable of knowing what you might like.
 

InTheEvening

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2007
Messages
596
Reaction score
622
A lot of good advice in this thread, yes. I definitely agree that not every 50s or 60s Standard neck is going to feel the same. My 50s neck doesn’t feel overly chunky, definitely manageable for my average hand size. If you found the guitar you like, don’t worry about what the specs may say on paper, just snatch it up.

Regarding the question on pricing from the larger stores, not sure if they’ll budge. I bought from a family owned place and they preemptively offered me the 50s Gold Top for $2,100.
Agreed on the pricing. I went during one of those holiday deal weekends and GC let my use the 15% off coupon on my standard 60’s without any pushback. Got mine for $2125.

OP, you should def ask for a discount, 15-20% is a reasonable thing to ask. And if they can’t give the discount straight up, ask if they’ll throw in some other gear for a good deal or offer up some store credit on a future purchase. You can get creative.


As for standard 50’s vs classics. I’ll say this….I LOVE pancakes. I’ve had them in diners, restaurants, and home made and they’re always great. But I don’t give a damn about waffles, they’re okay, but I’ll never go out of my way for a waffle and 9 times out of 10 I’ll take pancakes over waffles. Now, pancakes are not actually better than waffles, they’re just different and I’m sure there’s folks who swear by waffles. I can go on about their differences all day and try or convince myself to like waffles…but I know I’ll just be happier and save lots of time if I just order the pancakes. Sounds like the standard is your pancakes, get the one that spoke to you.
 

Nintari

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2020
Messages
176
Reaction score
145
I really dislike weight-relief, so the standard will always feels better to me when I hold it.
 


Latest Threads



Top