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OK, one last time (Les Paul"ish" differences)


zeronyne

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All this talk about LP's and LP knockoffs has me jonesing for one, but I am very, very confused.

 

Can someone give me an INFORMED opinion? In other words, is there anyone who owns, let's say, a Les Paul Studio and a very similar Epiphone version?

 

I the Gibson decal worth twice the price? IS there an appreciable difference?

 

I know that it's a difficult comparison, and I know there are variations from guitar to guitar, but I'd like to hear from someone who has two extremely similar models except for the Gibson/Epiphone moniker. Maybe you use one as a backup?

 

I'm curious because in the noisy confines of me local megamart music store, it's hard to tell the difference sonically, and sometimes, even the fit and finish is variable on both.

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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sorry no help from me, all i do with lp's is drool on them cause im broke. Flat broke :(

The forumite formerly known as Cooper.

 

"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." John Lennon

 

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will finally know peace." Jimi Hendrix

 

"Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens." Jimi Hendrix

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I don't own either, but I have played a couple of each in stores too.

 

I think the difference is pretty dramatic in both action and tone. The LP is far better.

 

BUT, that being said, the last time I tried a Les Paul Standard, I also played an Ibanez Artcore AS73 and I thought the action was "almost" as good, and the tone just as good (and the same!).

 

FWIW, my 2 cents.

Gotta' geetar... got the amp. There must be SOMEthing else I... "need".
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Les Paul Studio? Nahh. Buy a Standard. If you cannot feel and hear a difference between the real thing and the Epi, buy the Epi. The Epis are nice enough, but I've been playing Gibson Les Pauls since 1969, and for me only the real thing will do.

 

In the long run, if you are a guitar player, you can play guitar. It won't matter what the name is on the instrument. Each may feel different, and inspire a little different style of playing. But you'll still sound like you if it is a $10 TerboCrumpus or a megabuck Paul Reed Smith. Ever see the films of Hendrix playing acosutic? Still sounds like Hendrix.

 

Bill

"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

 

Steve Martin

 

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As a former Gibson Customer Support rep, I think I can assist you. But the best way to find out would be to call Rame or Drew at Gibson Customer Support. (1-800-4GIBSON)

 

First, Les Paul's are American made from better quality woods than their Epi counterparts. Build is usually superior as well, but certain Epi models (Elite's for example) are very well built and are great for the $$$).

 

Gibson uses nitro-cellulose lacquer finishes and insists this finish makes a sonic improvement over more modern, durable, poly finishes.

 

Gibson instruments with figured tops use thicker pieces of wood for the cap. But Epi always uses real wood for figured caps. No "photo-flames" here.

 

Electronics! Gibson pickups are far superior to the "Gibson designed" Epi pickups. Look closely, though. High end Epi's sometimes use American made Gibson pickups.

 

There's a lot going on behind the scenes between the Korean made Epi's (most Epi's, other than Elites in Japan and a few signature models assembled in the U.S.) and American made Gibson products. Despite the overpricing (in my and many others' opinions) of Gibson products, at some point you are getting what you pay for by spending more. Though that may be for appointments rather than superior build or sound.

 

That's a start. Do some homework with Gibson Customer Support. You won't regret it.

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fntstcsnd

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i think its all about you. Some people have champagne tastes while for others, bud is just fine. It all depends wat u want and how much your willing to pay for it. That said, I dont think anyone who hasnt got their heart set on a gibson should consider an agile. As I said before I'm no expert, but apparently their higher end LP models are of higher quality than epiphone at a lower cost.

The forumite formerly known as Cooper.

 

"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." John Lennon

 

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will finally know peace." Jimi Hendrix

 

"Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens." Jimi Hendrix

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Originally posted by fantasticsound:

That's a start. Do some homework with Gibson Customer Support. You won't regret it.

Thanks, FS, that's great advice. Your comments were exactly what I was looking for.

 

Thanks to everyone else also!

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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I wanted an LP, but was a 'lil tight on funds. So... I went to the local used shop.

 

I tried a sunburst standard out. In nice shape, and it felt nice and sounded just like it should. The tag read "$490- No Case"

 

Then I picked up an old Hohner LP copy. Real pretty. Five layer binding, gold hardware, and lotsa Mother of Pearl inlay work. It felt every bit as good as the real thing, and sounded nice too. Not exact, but real good. The tag read "$166 w/case".

 

Naturally, I bought the Hohner. :D

 

On the way out of the store, I bought a new gold Gibson tailpiece, two new gold '59 pickups, and a new gold bridge. I also grabbed some nice Gotoh tuning machines with the "stairstep" pearloid knobs. Total cost for the day? $320.

 

That was 12 years ago. I'm thrilled with the feel, look, and sound, and it's still my main axe. :)

 

Just trying to say... ya never know.

 

Ricky

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One thing I will say is that I'm really disappointed in the quality of Epiphone wiring. I've had my Epi LP Standard since 12/95. Within two years, I had to have some connections resodered. Since then, I've had some other wiring problems, but at this point, it's not Epi's fault (but could be a contributor).

 

That said, there are some good things to it. I think the wood in my Epi beats anything Fender puts out.

 

The pickups I don't think are a problem. They could be better, but with high-gain styles and in the context of the whole band, the differences aren't a huge deal for me.

 

Both these of course are personal opinions.

 

One thing I will say; if you buy Epiphone (or I shudder to think... a cheaper brand), you'll need to put some locking tuners on that sucker because Epiphones have horrible, horrible tuners. Might have to sand the saddles a little too.

 

BTW, aren't PRS's Gibson knock offs now? :D;)

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Originally posted by ricknbokkerv2.0:

Just trying to say... ya never know.

 

Ricky

OK, so that brings up a great question. What makes a Les Paul a Les Paul? I know that there's several different "standard" pickups that have been on different models of true Gibson LP's through the years, and I know the tonewoods have varied a bit. So even among just USA-made Gibson LPs, there are differences.

 

So then what does it take to be a Les Paul? Is it the set neck + pickups + carved top + scale? Or is it body shape + scale + neck radius + pickups? Is an Agile more of a Les Paul than a PRS McCarty?

 

I know this same question could apply to Strats, but they are WAY to varied to call the jangly single coil sound "THE Strat sound".

 

So how about it? How Les Paul does a guitar have to be to be a Les Paul?

"For instance" is not proof.

 

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