What year is this Aria Pro II Standard LS-500 Les Paul?

Tulip

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Hi, my first public post so hope this is in the right place?

I've been seeking a MIJ Les Paul for some time, having just been made redundant I now have some time to find one but obviously on a budget.

1. Aria Pro II Les Paul: Does anyone have a view on what this is exactly (photos attached) - it has no serial number? Anything I should look out for upon inspection? I had a bass of this brand (quite modern) this was not a great instrument so I am wary.

My other options:

2. A pawn shop Epiphone Elite 2002 - a crack in the nut and the plug socket, many dents and a crackle. Not preferred due to condition but have heard good things.

3. After reading the MIJ classifieds here I learned Edwards are great value for money but shipping from Japan is a bit problematic right now. There is local 2015 e-lp130 Les Paul honeyburst claiming to be unplayed condition but a bit over my preferred budget.

Thanks very much in advance for any insights, opinons or words of advice.
 

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Ohjay

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1. Aria Pro II Les Paul: Does anyone have a view on what this is exactly (photos attached) - it has no serial number? Anything I should look out for upon inspection? I had a bass of this brand (quite modern) this was not a great instrument so I am wary.
Do not make the mistake of thinking an old MIJ Aria Pro has the same quality as a modern instrument by the same brand.
The Matsumoku era guitars (1976-1987) are really good instruments and nothing like the modern MIK counterparts.

As for the guitar in question it could be from 1977-1979. Based on what I see I'm inclined to lean more toward '77 but it's nearly impossible to know for sure.
I'm also not convinced that the guitar is an LS-500, it could also be a lower model, e.g. LS-400.
If possible, remove one of the pickups and check the construction of the top because if it is an LS-400 it might be partially hollow.
They are still good guitars though.
 

Tulip

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Thanks for your reply. Yes, it will come down to how it plays in the hand for me. This one is within driving distance which is a big plus whereas the new Edwards is not reachable. It is also about 2/3 the price.

Would you care to punt a price range on this? He wants AUD$870.

I have a near mint Ibanez PM2-AA Pat Matheny in hard case that I picked up second hand for about that much so I was considering to offer an exchange (must not exceed current guitar numbers due to wife) but it seems I may be on the bad end of that deal? He also offers to buy guitars elsewhere on the site and says he has no qualms if they are damaged - nothing wrong with that but more scope for something done that I will miss upon inspection which makes me nervous.

I will see if I can look under a pick-up, thanks for that pro tip!
 

Ohjay

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Would you care to punt a price range on this? He wants AUD$870.
I'd really rather not. There's too many unknown variables:
- I don't know the market in Australia
- I haven't played this specific guitar
- Pictures don't tell the whole story (e.g. are the frets worn and need replacing soon, etc)
 

Tulip

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I understand thanks, I’ll check it out soon.
 

m5570

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I agree it’s a late 70s & not sure if it’s a 500. I did the dollars conversion (AUD to US) and I think it’s high but I also don’t know the market there either so cannot say for sure.

Why don’t you look at comparable guitars on the Yahoo! Jap auction sites & see what they go for and factor in shipping & then you may have a better idea of what you’re looking at.
 

Tulip

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Haven’t looked for these - just the Edwards that was not much cheaper - so will do. Thanks.
 

MikeyTheCat

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Hi, my first public post so hope this is in the right place?

I've been seeking a MIJ Les Paul for some time, having just been made redundant I now have some time to find one but obviously on a budget.

1. Aria Pro II Les Paul: Does anyone have a view on what this is exactly (photos attached) - it has no serial number? Anything I should look out for upon inspection? I had a bass of this brand (quite modern) this was not a great instrument so I am wary.

My other options:

2. A pawn shop Epiphone Elite 2002 - a crack in the nut and the plug socket, many dents and a crackle. Not preferred due to condition but have heard good things.

3. After reading the MIJ classifieds here I learned Edwards are great value for money but shipping from Japan is a bit problematic right now. There is local 2015 e-lp130 Les Paul honeyburst claiming to be unplayed condition but a bit over my preferred budget.

Thanks very much in advance for any insights, opinons or words of advice.
Looking at the hardware and the control cavity it looks like it could be a late 70s model. Mine is still in use by one of my sons and is still one of the most playable guitars I own.
 

GammyBird

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You should be able to get an Aria Pro LP for cheaper than that one. I don't see nibs so I'd guess it may be a 500...
 


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