Where is Gibson Getting This Wood - AAA I Don't Think So

MP4-22

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The price increase has me a non buyer.... was looking at some WW 50s unbursts but at $3175 shipped eek. I had bought x2 standards before for $2500 shipped, now they cant/wont deal.

And sweetwater has the iced tea 50s. A few i saw looked good but again $2899 when they were what $2699 no thanks.


So i grabbed a 2014 traditional used and a H150 custom core Sweetwater marked as a demo but has no damage. Crazy top! Pics dont do it justice.

Knew the prices were going up, thats why i bought 2 LP's last year
 

peobryant

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I've got an '18 Traditional and a '19 Wildwood Standard, both have, in my opinion at least, fantastic tops and fretboards.

My '19 Wildwood Standard

MNHYOMt.jpg


My '18 Traditional

GJZlMrj.jpg


Both guitars were bought from Wildwood and both play even better than they look. Wildwood is definitely my dealer of choice, but Sweetwater is great, too. Unfortunately, Sweetwater is pretty notorious for taking poor pictures of guitars, I have seen numerous average looking Les Pauls on Sweetwater's website that turned out to have amazing tops once they get to the buyer and they take some pictures.
 

rjwilson37

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2017 AAA Les Paul Standard T Blueberry Burst below, this was a sweet guitar. The 2017 HP's of this model were AAAA tops and had some serious flames.

Before mid year 2021, yes... The unburst had some nice flames and the AA as well as AAA tops were sweet. But right now, seems the flames are far and few between on a lot of the guitars I have looked at. More of a plain top look right now on a lot of the guitars I am seeing.

lpstdtbburst2.jpg
lpstdtbburst7.jpg
 
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jbash

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2014 Trad
20141007_203027.jpg


2020 Slash 50s

NEWSL50Sresize.jpg


My opinion- Since the buyout and reintroduction of the Les Paul Standard, Gibson has been selling the piss out of them. Thanks to COVID, demand is way up, prices are way up on lumber, and supply isn't what it was prior to mid 2020. They are having a tough time sourcing enough great tops. And thus, we are seeing a small but notable downgrade across the board on average- Not that there are no good tops, just they are fewer and farther between.
 
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Azmedian

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Yeah, and the red is mod-shop OEM, correct? Like it.
Yes

I called Gibson they don’t sell the red rings I would like another set
I plan to add 3rd pu

If anyone has a set of mod shop reds they want to sell or trade let me know
 

grumphh_the_banned_one

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In all of your kowtowing for Gibson, do any of you realise that "AAA" is simply a letter combination that is wholly made up by Gibsons marketing department?

Just look at the guitar you wish to buy, and decide for yourself whether you like its looks.
The end.
Whatever the marketing department calls it is completely irrelevant

Gibson could call a top made from a piece of knotted pine "AAA" and then it would be "AAA"...
...because it is a made up term.

What i find interesting is that so many of you take these marketing terms at face value, rather than just ignoring them for what they are...

Oh and also, Gibsons best tops are called AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH
 

Phillycheez402

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In all of your kowtowing for Gibson, do any of you realise that "AAA" is simply a letter combination that is wholly made up by Gibsons marketing department?

Just look at the guitar you wish to buy, and decide for yourself whether you like its looks.
The end.
Whatever the marketing department calls it is completely irrelevant

Gibson could call a top made from a piece of knotted pine "AAA" and then it would be "AAA"...
...because it is a made up term.

What i find interesting is that so many of you take these marketing terms at face value, rather than just ignoring them for what they are...

Oh and also, Gibsons best tops are called AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH
Somebody had to say it
 

rjwilson37

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AA, AAA, AAAA, AAA+, AAAA+ and so on is indeed a term Gibson came up with to define how much Flame and Pizazz your guitar top on a particular model will have. I am just stating that the guitars coming out do not match what Gibson is stating is all. Why say a top is AA or AAA if indeed it is more of a plain top guitar. That is what this post is really talking about, where Gibson Marketing came up with a standard so to speak and the new guitars we are seeing are not living up to the standard listed in the Marketing material for the model.
 

pugachev

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2017 AAA Les Paul Standard T Blueberry Burst below, this was a sweet guitar. The 2017 HP's of this model were AAAA tops and had some serious flames.

Before mid year 2021, yes... The unburst had some nice flames and the AA as well as AAA tops were sweet. But right now, seems the flames are far and few between on a lot of the guitars I have looked at. More of a plain top look right now on a lot of the guitars I am seeing.

View attachment 570523 View attachment 570524
Freaking beautiful right here ❤️
 

jbash

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In all of your kowtowing for Gibson, do any of you realise that "AAA" is simply a letter combination that is wholly made up by Gibsons marketing department?

Just look at the guitar you wish to buy, and decide for yourself whether you like its looks.
The end.
Whatever the marketing department calls it is completely irrelevant

Gibson could call a top made from a piece of knotted pine "AAA" and then it would be "AAA"...
...because it is a made up term.

What i find interesting is that so many of you take these marketing terms at face value, rather than just ignoring them for what they are...

Oh and also, Gibsons best tops are called AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH
AA, AAA, AAAA, AAA+, AAAA+ and so on is indeed a term Gibson came up with to define how much Flame and Pizazz your guitar top on a particular model will have. I am just stating that the guitars coming out do not match what Gibson is stating is all. Why say a top is AA or AAA if indeed it is more of a plain top guitar. That is what this post is really talking about, where Gibson Marketing came up with a standard so to speak and the new guitars we are seeing are not living up to the standard listed in the Marketing material for the model.


You both are right. And I'd guess most of us aware of that.

PRS has had this problem for years. Some years the 10 tops are no better on average than normal tops from a year previous. Or Artists tops are not better than 10 tops from 5 years ago. It varies depending on what can be sourced.
 

DaveSG

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You both are right. And I'd guess most of us aware of that.

PRS has had this problem for years. Some years the 10 tops are no better on average than normal tops from a year previous. Or Artists tops are not better than 10 tops from 5 years ago. It varies depending on what can be sourced.

I've noticed that as well. We got conditioned to hearing '10 top' and that was basically the absolute best of the best. Then I started seeing a lot of these tops and sure they were great, but few of them were spectacular. They fit in the middle of the mix.

Gibson can call anything AA or AAA that they want. But the scale is 1A - 5A, with 5A being the perfect flamed/quilted top. I know a lot of people may list something as a 5A when it really isn't, and that is fine. I'm comfortable with my own subjective determination, based on recent historical consensus. I've also bought a lot of tops for guitar building. Any experienced builder here would probably be a great judge of a top grade.
 

rjwilson37

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I am finally starting to see some nice ones at Sweetwater, YAY!

Not so much for the Unburst, but the others have some nice tops.
 

Rozman62

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Wish Gibson would discontinue this grading gimmick. It's all opinion based subjective marketing BS.
 

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