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tall_martin

Recommend a Gibson/PRS/or epiphone- now sorted 😀

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Posted (edited)

Hi,

I'm after a new guitar.

I'm an indifferent guitar player with a 4 month old son. I'm probably not going to improve to god like ability any time soon.

With all of the above in mind I bought a harley benton prs alike. Which is fine, but I'm curious about something "better". I bought some bare knuckles pickups 2nd hand form here- they sound immense.

With all that in mind, is something like a Gibson or PRS actually going to be any better? I'm unlikely to be playing many gigs for quite some time, especially not on guitar!

Better woods- I'm 100% sure my ears can't tell a plank from anything else.

Pickups- I love the bare knuckles, they might migrate. Will the rest of the electrics make a difference? 

Finishing and play ability. Will i notice the difference between a £1000 Gibson or £500 Epiphone of similar PRS vs PRS/SE?

Obviously the answer is get down to a shop and give them ago. Since I can't, I thought I'd ask here.

I'd consider second hand, its the same question at a lower price. 

Gibson at £900 https://www.thomann.de/gb/gibson_les_paul_tribute_sg.htm

Epiphone at £650 https://www.thomann.de/gb/gibson_les_paul_tribute_sg.htm

 

PRS Se £750 https://www.thomann.de/gb/prs_se_custom_22_vs_2018.htm

PRS S2 Custom £1500 https://www.thomann.de/gb/prs_s2_custom_22_wb.htm

 

Cheers

Martin

 

Edited by tall_martin
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Posted (edited)

I prefer Gibson to Epiphone in most things, but Epiphones punch way above their weight class for the price.

PRS are really nice with the SE model in a similar class to Epiphone.

 

I have an S2 PRS languishing in my closet, if you want it let me know, it's going to be WAY cheaper than 1500

Edited by AngelDeVille

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Much like @AngelDeVille if budget allows, I'd take Gibson over an Epiphone if it was a like for like thing (Les Paul/Flying V/Explorer/Firebird); I still find the headstock design horribly off-putting.  I suppose if I were looking for a guitar now, I'd go Gibson or Dusenberg, maybe even stretch abit more to see what I could get from Frank at Diemel (the matt black Firestar, with the pickup behind the bridge) or Gabriel at Echo Park (The '59 or La Carne).

That said, Epiphone have done many original/standalone models; I own a sub-£500 Phantomatic, which is a hybrid of an Epiphone Wilshire body with a stock Epiphone Les Paul neck; I suppose I like it because it's not apeing to be something else made by a more expensive bigger brother. 

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Hi,

Thanks for the input!

So since I have the budget for a Gibson Les Paul, that's what you would recommend? Because it is real thing?

Frank at Diemel At ~£3k + thats a proper budget blower! I see what you mean about being its own thing. I've never seen a guitar with the pick up placement or piezo pickups like that.

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If you’re spending £900 on a Gibson, would you not be better off buying a second hand one rather than the new “tribute” series. I suspect they might depreciate initially and possibly permanently whereas an older classic will probably hold value or even appreciate. Just a thought, if it’s not your main instrument it may not be a keeper.

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4 hours ago, NancyJohnson said:

Much like @AngelDeVille if budget allows, I'd take Gibson over an Epiphone if it was a like for like thing (Les Paul/Flying V/Explorer/Firebird); I still find the headstock design horribly off-putting.  I suppose if I were looking for a guitar now, I'd go Gibson or Dusenberg, maybe even stretch abit more to see what I could get from Frank at Diemel (the matt black Firestar, with the pickup behind the bridge) or Gabriel at Echo Park (The '59 or La Carne).

That said, Epiphone have done many original/standalone models; I own a sub-£500 Phantomatic, which is a hybrid of an Epiphone Wilshire body with a stock Epiphone Les Paul neck; I suppose I like it because it's not apeing to be something else made by a more expensive bigger brother. 

I had one of the Phantomatic Epiphones, and it was very nice, but it wasn't as nice as a Wilshire, there are some reissue Wilshires that are on my radar, but I'm trying to limit my treble guitars to SG's and Flying V's.

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38 minutes ago, AngelDeVille said:

I had one of the Phantomatic Epiphones, and it was very nice, but it wasn't as nice as a Wilshire, there are some reissue Wilshires that are on my radar, but I'm trying to limit my treble guitars to SG's and Flying V's.

I do like mine, but it needed a bit of work to get it playing nicely.  The factory setup was horrific; stupid high action, the pickups were a bit muddy (replaced with humbucker-sized P90s) and the machine heads were frankly awful (replaced with Sperzel locking types).  It's brilliant now.

Here's my good friend Luca Vulpio using it at a gig we played with his band.  That's my old Thunderbird too!

18237874_10212823157235680_3316990429404

 

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Posted (edited)

Graham- I thought so. But some of the second hand prices on ebay are higher for the second hand studios than a new one. Some of the tribute prices look similar. 

Normally I’m always up for second hand. I’m not worried by wee marks here and there.

Edited by tall_martin

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I recently thought about getting another Epiphone Les Paul Standard (sold one in 2002 when I got my Gibson) to give my Gibson a break. Didn't like the neck on the current ones at all. Tried several didn't like any of them. On the other hand, they sounded ok.

So if buying new, I'd be looking at PRS SE 245 single cut:

https://www.gak.co.uk/en/prs-se-245-vintage-sunburst/930909?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIzOfs0-7H6QIVyu7tCh1_6wXnEAQYBSABEgKskPD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

I wouldn't recommend buying a Gibson unless you can play it first and pick out a good one from a less than good one. I played quite a few Standards when I was looking for one 18-years ago and have played quite a few since. The only one I've liked more than the one I have was a '57 Goldtop Historic Reissue in a shop in Hamburg in 2009. Should have bought it, but didn't want to lash out two grand at the time. Even the Custom Shop Historics vary quite a lot between examples of the same guitar.

As for used Les Pauls, take care. There are lots of fakes out there. It's also common for Les Pauls to suffer neck breaks at the headstock. These can be fixed, but should be done professionally and does affect value. If you do consider going for a used Gibson, a lightly used Les Paul Studio may well fit the bill and shouldn't cost a huge amount. 

Sorry for prattling on, I hope it's of some value.

Good luck in your hunt.

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Thanks!

I thought Gibson had put their quality woes behind them. Is that still a thing now?

The new studios seem To be similar prices to the used ones on eBay. 

I’ll have a think about a wait and a shopping trip if I decide to go for a Gibson then.

Do the prs not have a similar back angled headstock? Or are they just built stronger?

The prs is a fine looking guitar 😀

 

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Posted (edited)
49 minutes ago, tall_martin said:

Thanks!

I thought Gibson had put their quality woes behind them. Is that still a thing now?

The new studios seem To be similar prices to the used ones on eBay. 

I’ll have a think about a wait and a shopping trip if I decide to go for a Gibson then.

Do the prs not have a similar back angled headstock? Or are they just built stronger?

The prs is a fine looking guitar 😀

 

It's not Gibson quality that's the problem as such and for sure the current mob seem to be doing things better than the latter years of when Henry was in charge. It's just that in my view they seem to be more 'individual' than the PRS SE range seem to be. I've not played a bad Gibson, just find one that speaks to you, especially if you're spending more than a grand for one. I would be the same if I wanted a US PRS. A fair chunk of change, so I'd need to play it first before reaching for Mr. Plastic.

I came very close to pulling the trigger on a limited edition 'spalted maple' topped single cut PRS SE a few years ago. I'd gone looking for a Taylor acoustic (which I did get), but the PRS was very nice. The 245 I linked is what I'd get now, and have been mentally kicking that tyre for a little while now.

Gibsons have a one piece neck. The grain direction, the nut groove and the truss rod cutout combine to make a weak area. So they can break, sometimes even in the case. Mine has been fine, but it's a worry.

Pretty much all of the other angled headstocks I've come across have a scarf joint for the headstock. This is a stronger arrangement. I don't know of PRS headstock break issues.

Edited by GeeJayW

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Thanks, If it’s a USA prs, it will be second hand off eBay for my budget

 

So on a sample size  of 7, no breakages? 😀

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On 23/05/2020 at 19:21, tall_martin said:

Thanks, If it’s a USA prs, it will be second hand off eBay for my budget

 

So on a sample size  of 7, no breakages? 😀

You may wish to try posting here: www.guitarchat.co.uk

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On 20/05/2020 at 22:11, tall_martin said:

Hi,

I'm after a new guitar.

I'm an indifferent guitar player with a 4 month old son. I'm probably not going to improve to god like ability any time soon.

With all of the above in mind I bought a harley benton prs alike. Which is fine, but I'm curious about something "better". I bought some bare knuckles pickups 2nd hand form here- they sound immense.

With all that in mind, is something like a Gibson or PRS actually going to be any better? I'm unlikely to be playing many gigs for quite some time, especially not on guitar!

Better woods- I'm 100% sure my ears can't tell a plank from anything else.

Pickups- I love the bare knuckles, they might migrate. Will the rest of the electrics make a difference? 

Finishing and play ability. Will i notice the difference between a £1000 Gibson or £500 Epiphone of similar PRS vs PRS/SE?

Obviously the answer is get down to a shop and give them ago. Since I can't, I thought I'd ask here.

I'd consider second hand, its the same question at a lower price. 

Gibson at £900 https://www.thomann.de/gb/gibson_les_paul_tribute_sg.htm

Epiphone at £650 https://www.thomann.de/gb/gibson_les_paul_tribute_sg.htm

 

PRS Se £750 https://www.thomann.de/gb/prs_se_custom_22_vs_2018.htm

PRS S2 Custom £1500 https://www.thomann.de/gb/prs_s2_custom_22_wb.htm

 

Cheers

Martin

 

 

I've got a PRS SE Custom 24 and I can't speak highly of it enough. I love the pickups, the finish, everything. I've never been a big fan of coil taps on humbuckers, but on this guitar they sound great. I am mostly a Strat player, I love single coils. The PRS doesn't sound like one, but it has a very nice single-coil kind of sound in addition to the fatter humbuckers. Ergonomically, it's miles better than any Les Paul style.

Go get it! :)

This is mine:

IMG_20200522_180317798.jpg?dl=1

 

 

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On 25/05/2020 at 12:25, mcnach said:

 

I've got a PRS SE Custom 24 and I can't speak highly of it enough. I love the pickups, the finish, everything. I've never been a big fan of coil taps on humbuckers, but on this guitar they sound great. I am mostly a Strat player, I love single coils. The PRS doesn't sound like one, but it has a very nice single-coil kind of sound in addition to the fatter humbuckers. Ergonomically, it's miles better than any Les Paul style.

Go get it! :)

This is mine:

IMG_20200522_180317798.jpg?dl=1

 

 

That colour is incredible. That's one thing PRS seem to do better than most these days.

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Posted (edited)

I've got a PRS S2 Custom 24 and if you want the sound and playability of the "real thing" for less money than the core series they are excellent. They're made in the US, same standards, same QA, set neck etc, they just don't have the carved top (there are a few other minor differences as well). I had a PRS SE (are they still making those?) and it was nice but not a patch on the S2, which was why I traded up. I'm currently selling my other guitar (Fender Tele) even though it's good, because all I need is the S2, with the coil tap it's very versatile.

You don't get the "ten top" amazing colours on them but I like mine, bit more understated which is fine cos I don't need to be drawing attention to my playing.

They should be around second hand for £700 - £800 ish depending on the finish? Maybe less - they did some on solid colours that were about £1200 - £1300 new I think.

 

 

Edited by adamg67
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I have a Gibson Melody Maker Flying V.  A 'real' USA Gibson for a fraction of the price. Check out the 2014 range, they usually go for under £500 s/h.

Gibson Introduces New Melody Maker Les Paul, SG, Explorer, and ...

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11 hours ago, adamg67 said:

I've got a PRS S2 Custom 24 and if you want the sound and playability of the "real thing" for less money than the core series they are excellent. They're made in the US, same standards, same QA, set neck etc, they just don't have the carved top (there are a few other minor differences as well). I had a PRS SE (are they still making those?) and it was nice but not a patch on the S2, which was why I traded up. I'm currently selling my other guitar (Fender Tele) even though it's good, because all I need is the S2, with the coil tap it's very versatile.

You don't get the "ten top" amazing colours on them but I like mine, bit more understated which is fine cos I don't need to be drawing attention to my playing.

They should be around second hand for £700 - £800 ish depending on the finish? Maybe less - they did some on solid colours that were about £1200 - £1300 new I think.

 

 

 

I'm not a PRS connossieur, but if the S2 is even nicer than the SE they must be pretty special! :)

Mine is an SE, some kind of limited edition Custom 24, but I understand the 'limited' is only with regards to the finish. I'm not a fan of the quilted tops but at least mine is not over the top. The minute I held it, I knew it would be mine. It balances very well, the neck feels amazing... it makes my Strat feel a bit agricultural by comparison, however the Strat is like an old bicycle you've had and maintained for decades: there may be better bikes, but this is one you'll keep riding.

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, mcnach said:

I'm not a PRS connossieur, but if the S2 is even nicer than the SE they must be pretty special! :)

Mine is an SE, some kind of limited edition Custom 24, but I understand the 'limited' is only with regards to the finish. I'm not a fan of the quilted tops but at least mine is not over the top. The minute I held it, I knew it would be mine. It balances very well, the neck feels amazing... it makes my Strat feel a bit agricultural by comparison, however the Strat is like an old bicycle you've had and maintained for decades: there may be better bikes, but this is one you'll keep riding.

I'm not an expert either but I think the SE I had was the bottom of the range at the time, I traded a Gretsch Electromatic that I picked up cheap for it and then traded the SE for the S2. It had the les paul scale length as well. Just from bits I've heard recently maybe SEs are better quality now, I think the prices went up a little bit as well.

Edited by adamg67

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1 hour ago, adamg67 said:

I'm not an expert either but I think the SE I had was the bottom of the range at the time, I traded a Gretsch Electromatic that I picked up cheap for it and then traded the SE for the S2. It had the les paul scale length as well. Just from bits I've heard recently maybe SEs are better quality now, I think the prices went up a little bit as well.

 

Yeah I am a bit lost too, there seems to be different SE types. The guitarist in one of my bands has some kind of black SE and I never thought it was special. It is nice, but nothing made me want to own one. 

Just to be on the safe side, and seeing that I really like my SE, I'm going to avoid trying the more upmarket ones :D 

I played a gold top USA PRS with P90s sometime in the late 90s and that was very very very nice. It had been used and abused but it felt fantastic, and I do love P90s (providing there aren't many sources of interference nearby). I tried other PRS since, but nothing as nice as that one. 

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As a lifelong Gibson Les Paul fan (for the sound) I`ve regrettably established that I don`t play them very well, so on my guitar journey I`ve now come across the Fender Telecaster Deluxe, essentially a Tele but with the same humbucker pickup set-up/controls as a Les Paul. Additionally due to the longer scale and 12" fretboard radius they`re a doddle for a bassist to swap across to. Worth checking out.

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