My Review of the Gibson Murphy Lab (Heavy Aged Les Paul)

DharmaBum

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Great review, and excellent content on your channel. Wow, your gold top is something special. Great playing.
 

Tim Plains

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Not having all aged hardware could be intentional so they can call it a future spec change / improvement. I agree it's stupid that Gibson still puts shiny parts on a heavily aged guitar. Fail.
 

jenton70

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Thanks for the review.

I've had 4 of these now. And the first was the best and that's the one I kept. It's my heavy aged R8. I kept it specifically for the sound. It has a great sounding set of pickups. These new custombuckers are a mixed bag but when they're good they're really good.

Some thoughts on the review -

I agree about the hardware. It's mind boggling that they age some parts and others are brand new. This needs to be addressed but I won't hold my breath.

I disagree regarding the razor vs. cold checking. I prefer the new checking in almost every way EXCEPT (see below)

I agree about the finish flaking. What a massive faux pax on Gibson's part. Huge lack of testing. And they will see a bunch of these come back. I mentioned having 4. The two ultra light R9's both had paint flaking right off in your hands when you hold the guitar. They'll fix this but it really doesn't make for a cool debut! The other 2 have had absolutely no flaking. You can't feel the checking. But one has a rusty colored back finish and the other is light brown. Maybe that's part of it.

I'm in the minority but I'm not overly into the tele-on-steroids Les Paul thing. Don't get me wrong, I don't like muddy pickups. I like the top end I just like it to be slightly rounder and more compressed than a single coil. Wizz has this on many of their pickups. OTPG does big time. And the stock pickups in my ML R8 has it. Subjective of course but that's what I look for. I found the ML guitar used in your video review to be a little muddy though.

Great video, I really enjoyed the side-by-side comparisons.
 

soyboi

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Thanks for the review.

I've had 4 of these now. And the first was the best and that's the one I kept. It's my heavy aged R8. I kept it specifically for the sound. It has a great sounding set of pickups. These new custombuckers are a mixed bag but when they're good they're really good.

Some thoughts on the review -

I agree about the hardware. It's mind boggling that they age some parts and others are brand new. This needs to be addressed but I won't hold my breath.

I disagree regarding the razor vs. cold checking. I prefer the new checking in almost every way EXCEPT (see below)

I agree about the finish flaking. What a massive faux pax on Gibson's part. Huge lack of testing. And they will see a bunch of these come back. I mentioned having 4. The two ultra light R9's both had paint flaking right off in your hands when you hold the guitar. They'll fix this but it really doesn't make for a cool debut! The other 2 have had absolutely no flaking. You can't feel the checking. But one has a rusty colored back finish and the other is light brown. Maybe that's part of it.

I'm in the minority but I'm not overly into the tele-on-steroids Les Paul thing. Don't get me wrong, I don't like muddy pickups. I like the top end I just like it to be slightly rounder and more compressed than a single coil. Wizz has this on many of their pickups. OTPG does big time. And the stock pickups in my ML R8 has it. Subjective of course but that's what I look for. I found the ML guitar used in your video review to be a little muddy though.

Great video, I really enjoyed the side-by-side comparisons.

would love to hear some sound clips of your R8 bud.
 

CoolRene

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Figured I'd just start a new thread since the first one was just meant to be for owners to discuss and share their new guitars :)

I was given the privileged of borrowing this guitar for a good week to really get a feel for it and shoot this in depth review and comparison. In the video I go over the Murphy Lab in general, take a closeup look at the aging as it compares to my M2M aged goldtop (and vintage guitar checking as well), then show off some tones with my goldtop side by side, and then go into what I consider the good, the bad and the in between of this guitar. Honest real user review, not a demo from a shop trying to sell you something just a regular dude that loves Les Paul's!


Hope this ends up being helpful for some of you on the fence or about to buy one now or in the near future. Overall I enjoyed having the guitar a lot, the top in particular was spectacular!
Thanks for the review. From 9 to 12K for a Murphy Lab LP for a “beta test” run is a bit hard to swallow. I’d go definitely the VOS or used vintage route.
Soundwise, I preferred your ‘57 GoldTop that was clearer, like a Tele on Steroids,like a vintage LP should sound.
 

peach64

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Here is what gets me...Seth Lover designed the PAF for Gibson. All bursts have them, some sound better than others. If this company is trying to make the best Bursts ever made asking for big bucks$$$ why can't they get their act together and get the vintage correct plain enamel made for their PAF's? It wasn't 42, it was 42.5 and nobody winds with this. And Gibson would be exclusive on this today, they would put a lot of winders out of business. That is a key detail .
 

Cap'n Chaos

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I agree with everything you’ve posted on here.
As a review it IS lacking a conclusion/ a bottom line.
Don’t you feel like coming up with your own conclusion though? He did a great job going over everything in detail and left it up to you to decide for yourself. I don’t need or want someone to tell me what to think
 

Andrew1225

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Don’t you feel like coming up with your own conclusion though? He did a great job going over everything in detail and left it up to you to decide for yourself. I don’t need or want someone to tell me what to think
You’ve also missed the point.
I’m competent enough to come to my own conclusions, as you are too of course.

Forget the guitar for a moment.
Judging this as a review video as the title says, it should provide a conclusion or ending thoughts from the reviewer.
It’s just the basics in reviewing something imo.

Plus, just because the reviewer recommends or doesn’t recommend something, it doesn’t mean that he’s selling or shitting on the product or telling you to think one way or the other lmao.

Seriously, when the hell did giving your own final thoughts on something become “spoon feeding”?
Talk about going to one extreme to the other :facepalm:

Intheblues is a YouTuber who does great reviews, he doesn’t sell the product but he will give a clear conclusion to how he feels about a product AND he asks our opinion like a good reviewer should.

Oh, and are we forgetting that OP stated on the 1st page that he doesn’t care what any of us think?
Then why advertise your video on here?
Again, a pretty bad look in my books.
 
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zdoggie

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every body has in their minds a guitar that has perfect tone ,looks ,and playability I personally believe that a few people have found this guitar and for them I'm happy but by and large anything beit a guitar a car or what ever its only worth what someone is willing to pay for it .


zdog
 

Cap'n Chaos

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You’ve also missed the point.
I’m competent enough to come to my own conclusions, as you are too of course.

Forget the guitar for a moment.
Judging this as a review video as the title says, it should provide a conclusion or ending thoughts from the reviewer.
It’s just the basics in reviewing something imo.

Plus, just because the reviewer recommends or doesn’t recommend something, it doesn’t mean that he’s selling or shitting on the product or telling you to think one way or the other lmao.

Seriously, when the hell did giving your own final thoughts on something become “spoon feeding”?
Talk about going to one extreme to the other :facepalm:

Intheblues is a YouTuber who does great reviews, he doesn’t sell the product but he will give a clear conclusion to how he feels about a product AND he asks our opinion like a good reviewer should.

Oh, and are we forgetting that OP stated on the 1st page that he doesn’t care what any of us think?
Then why advertise your video on here?
Again, a pretty bad look in my books.
If the reviewer‘s final opinion doesn’t influence your final decision in any way, then why do you feel so strongly that you need that?
 

hellzington

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I thought this was a pretty fair and balanced review by @yeatzee. He doesn't tell you what to think, he just presents all the facts that he observed and leaves you to reach your own conclusion. This especially feels apt on a guitar that is super expensive and part instrument, part art.

Personally, I wrestled with purchasing a Murphy Lab when they came out but ultimately chose not to. This video wasn't part of that process but after watching it, I feel like it validated my decision. I felt like with something so new and that used to be very personal to Tom, Gibson was bound to bungle it up; and it sure seems like they did. I expect in traditional corporate fashion that they will not ever acknowledge any of this publicly. That said, I'm sure they'll produce better guitars moving forward because the reaction in the community has been less than stellar, and when you're selling a LP for $10k, you have got to deliver a superior product.

I've actually played his Gibson Gold Top and I'll tell you it's unlike any other Les Paul I've ever played. Very bright and clear, almost a single-coil sound. I guess this is what people describe as "Tele on Steroids." Personally, while I enjoyed playing that guitar greatly, it's not the Les Paul for me; but, it's a wonderful guitar and it suits Yeatzee's playing style perfectly. The video does a good job of showing that sound vs. a more traditional LP sound from the ML.
 

Andrew1225

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If the reviewer‘s final opinion doesn’t influence your final decision in any way, then why do you feel so strongly that you need that?
I don’t, I just stated my opinion of his review format, and his video in general.

I don’t feel strongly towards anything.
It’s you, and other posters who directly quote me to give for an explanation, and I’m just answering my side.
nothing more nothing less.

@yeatzee
Thanks for reacting to my post,
very funny indeed.
Maybe learn to take in such minimal criticism without overreacting, and actually care what your viewers/fans think? Bye
 
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landguitar

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While I haven't finished watching the video yet - 32 minutes is something I need to carve out time for, and especially since I want to pay full attention, as I have been considering one of these and reading all the issues and concerns - I wanted to respond to a few comments.

I think 32 minutes without a conclusion might be a bit much, but regardless I prefer the kind of detailed reviews this sounds like without bias; Pete Thorn does that all the time although he is testing product he gets paid to do...like others have commented, I will make up my own mind anyway. And I see lots of YT content on many things, similarly oriented, presenting information for viewer's edification and not trying to tell them what to do.

OP commented on PRS' being perfect as opposed to Gibson. I DO own PRS' and as we all know, Paul has done a great job in standardizing quality of his/their guitars; but that has also led to what some - including me - have characterized as kind of a "soulless" guitar. I have seen plenty of other manufacturers' guitars with quality issues in stores, and Gibsons have always had that "hand made" feel; I'm good with that. The uniqueness/perfection of any product doesn't get better the more it costs - Louis Vuitton purses are not "perfect" either, from what I've seen (no, I don't own one!). Yes, Gibson does sometimes let some quality issues get out of the factory, which is why it's good to play one before you buy, or have the online dealer inspect the heck out of it - but that should be any guitar! Do any of us really think quality was better in the 50's, without any CNC or Plek, and much worse plant conditions, etc.? I know that's an open argument, but I really think this is the golden age of guitar building, including Gibson. It's unfortunate that they have had this paint issue, but it was in service to the attempt to make the process better. And it would have been very hard to foresee that without sending some out into the world!

Last, amps are also personal choice, but I found it interesting that OP responded to the comment that LP's should be played through a Marshall - and I tend to agree! - with the comment that the PT15 was supposed to be/"represented" to be Plexi-like on Ch 1, and "modded" on Ch 2 and 3. When they first came out I thought I would have to have a PT15 after I watched Pete Thorn's demo's. Then I played through one for a while at a local dealer. My concerns about the tubes not being EL 34 or 84's were validated. I even asked Pete about that on YT and he said they had no current plans to make it with EL's. To me, it sounds nothing like a Marshall on any channel. It's a great design, very usable and flexible, good sounds, but not my cup of tea for anything like a Marshall sound. Fender clean to Mesa crunch, etc., but not even Marshall-esque. In a video Pete made trying to show how close he could get the PT-15 to a vintage Marshall sound, it clearly took a lot of tweaking and IMO he never got there. So I bought a Friedman WW 20 instead, and love it!

Now, I am looking forward to watching the entire video, and thanks to OP for spending the time and effort to do it! It's awesome you were willing to do that!
 

Cap'n Chaos

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You say you don’t feel strongly, but your words imply otherwise.
Also, why suggest something to the creator of the video when it adds no value to the review, except to add length and maybe persuade those who can’t think for themselves?
 

yeatzee

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*sigh*

I'm really not interested in doing back and forth's with the 2 people that clearly just want to argue, I let the thread lie hoping that stuff would fizzle but here we are.

The fact that me saying "I couldn't care less what conclusion people come to after the video" is perceived as a controversial statement worth retracting to save face is insane. I will repeat it. I, Tanner Yates, do not care what conclusion you come to after watching my video(s) :) My goal has nothing to do with spoon feeding conclusions to someone watching so that they think exactly like me.

Did this review convince you to pull the trigger on that ML you've been eyeing? Awesome! Happy NGD, I hope you enjoy the guitar to the fullest and play tons of music on it. Conversely, did it convince you to steer clear of ML for good or until they fix some of the issues I pointed out? Great, happy to have helped make you a more informed consumer and maybe saved you some cash/headaches in the long run.

Either way I look at it as a win. I don't care which way anyone falls on that because I'm not trying to convince people to think a certain way, that's not the goal... and I have no stake in the game. I've already written out the goal of the video in my earlier response. FWIW you want to know how much I've made from YouTube on this video now that it's hit 4k views? Under $6, and I can't even get that payout from YT until i've crossed $100 total :rofl: I do this because I love guitars, I love Gibson, and I myself was very curious about the ML and saw nobody had done a legit review.

There's something for everyone on the internet, don't waste your time on content you're unhappy with... and if there's not content that matches what you're looking for get off your butt and try creating it yourself like I have here ;)

I'll pop back in after work to respond to all of the rest of the comments. I've enjoyed reading everyone's takes so far. Also wanted to mention there's some exciting stuff on the way, including a ES345 comparison with a 64, 65 and my 64 reissue. I'm probably not going to conclude that one saying you should or shouldn't buy XYZ so be forewarned and avoid if that's important to you ;)
 

DanD

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That's the conclusion I took away from the video...
 

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