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1959 Epiphone Les Paul Standard or...

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by brokeGradStudent, Feb 11, 2021.

  1. brokeGradStudent

    brokeGradStudent TDPRI Member

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    Curious what you all think of this, it’s the flagship Epi with a chunky c neck, burstbuckers, 50s wiring on CTS pots with a switchkraft switch, satin finish on a AA-AAA flame veneer, and a hard case. I have the opportunity to buy it new for 720. The bummer is I can’t try it out since it’s back ordered everywhere.

    Other options are Harley Benton LPs, Epi 60s tribute plus (57 pickups, gloss finish, alpha pots, thin taper neck), or alternatives/used Gibsons. No used gibsons are going for reasonable prices out here, granted I wouldn’t do a tribute or studio model because I love the carve top on an LP.

    Given that there’s a color I like, would you order or choose something else? Also what is your experience with this guitar if you have it.
     
  2. Fretting out

    Fretting out Poster Extraordinaire

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    I think the newer epiphones are awesome

    I’d go with one of their mid upper models like the 59 before something cheaper
     
  3. brokeGradStudent

    brokeGradStudent TDPRI Member

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    Awesome! I hear the frets are rough, but my luthier is a Gibson employee who does this stuff on the side.
     
  4. DavidP

    DavidP Friend of Leo's

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    I got one -- neck is a perfect fit for me (not full 50s baseball bat, and not 60s thin), and given the CTS/Switchcraft/Gibson Burstbuckers, plus a decent HS case, a no-brainer choice over the 50s and 60s models. Yes, Epiphone knocked it out of the park with this one. The only caveat is that the weight can vary considerably, so best to try before you buy, if possible.
     
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  5. Fretting out

    Fretting out Poster Extraordinaire

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    that Seems to be a common complaint that the frets are hit or miss, not only for fret sprout but for high/low frets as well
     
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  6. jayroc1

    jayroc1 Tele-Meister

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    I've got the worn gold top version and love it. The back of the neck is unfinished which feels great. I swapped the epiphone electronics out. They were these quick connect harness and wasn't a fan of the sounds but otherwise it's solid
     
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  7. Nickfl

    Nickfl Friend of Leo's

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    Harley Benton is worth considering. I've got several of their guitars both T-Type and Gibson clones and all are very good. With the price difference between that Epiphone and even the most expensive Les Paul style guitar Harley Benton makes you would have enough left over to replace all the electronics and upgrade to some boutique pickups. Their higher end models are coming with better quality electronics and especially better quality hardware these days so you might not even have to upgrade that stuff but it seems to vary significantly from model to model so don't count on it. If you're finicky about Jack and pot quality you should definitely plan to replace them on any Harley Benton you buy.

    I agree strongly with all the rave reviews Harley Benton gets out here on the internet but buyer beware because if you buy one and then spend a bunch of money upgrading it and still don't like it you're going to take a bath reselling it.

    I got a Harley Benton sc550 from a guy on Craigslist in December and he probably had $600 in it between the cost of the guitar shipping and all the upgrades but he sold it to me for $180. For the life of me I don't know why he didn't pull the Fralin pickups and upgraded tuners off of it and sell them separately but his loss my gain...

    The funny thing is the guy upgraded every piece of hardware on the guitar including the electronics but put the wrong cap values in and it made the guitar sound really dull and dark, I think that's why he got rid of it. When I got it home I just changed out the caps and it came to life and sounds awesome now.

    In any case personally I would do an epiphone or a tricked out Harley Benton any day of the week over a low end Gibson. I've got several HBs and Epiphones, both Korean and Chinese made, and I like them all better than any of the entry level Gibsons I have owned or played.
     
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  8. brokeGradStudent

    brokeGradStudent TDPRI Member

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    Great! Thanks for the take. I have a quilted maple p90 semi hollow tele from HB. Great without mods imo. Burnished the neck and it now plays better than my mim fender tele tbh. Probably not as good as my Chris Shiflett tele but beyond respectable.

    It’s now on order! After tax it’s below MSRP which is great. Sweetwater rep has my weight preference on record and will put in a word for me. Big month for guitars for me! Finished a GFS build (the polished turd), have a warmoth strat build on the bench (polished diamond), and now the LP after I sold a 2018 Epi plus top pro and immediately regretted it.
     
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  9. Jay Jernigan

    Jay Jernigan Tele-Afflicted

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    My only Epi Les Paul is a twenty year old '56 Goldtop. There are a couple of cosmetic issues, I had a bone nut installed before it left the store and have replaced the electronics, over time, just because I wanted to.
    It is, and has always been, a great guitar. Given the kudos that Epiphone has been receiving of late I think that you can buy with confidence.
    I have a couple newer Epi guitars and I agree that they are fine. Happy hunting.
     
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  10. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    Interesting! - I personally would grab a used Gibson LP Studio on Craigslist for that price, which is what they seem to go for. Studios do have carved tops and trapezoid markers btw (no binding), it is the specials that don't have carved tops.
     
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  11. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

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    Epiphone makes a respectable axe, and there are piles of them out there on the used market. You should be able to score one for $350-$400 with a case, put whatever pickups you want in 'em. The Agile AL3000 series are a really nice LP style for short cash, too.

    FYI, Musician's Friend/GC have a 15% coupon code going on now- it won't work in the cart but it wouldn't surprise me if you could get that applied to the 1959 Epi if you called them, that's generally how it works. That would make it $680 before tax. At that price I'd be tempted to save a little extra cash for a used Gibson LP Studio- those (and the Tributes) do have a carved top, it's the Specials that are flat tops.
     
  12. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

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    Ha, beat me to it!
     
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  13. brokeGradStudent

    brokeGradStudent TDPRI Member

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    Haha I might look at that GC deal soon. The issue with Gibson stuff is the offers around Nashville are insanely expensive. Cheapest I saw was 900 on a special with a cracked neck.
     
  14. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

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    Take a look here-
    https://www.guitarcenter.com/Used/

    The stock changes daily, be ready to pounce if you see a deal- they don't last long. GC has a great return policy, the most you'll be out if you don't like it is the shipping cost (which generally runs around $22 for guitars).
     
  15. Milspec

    Milspec Poster Extraordinaire

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    Time for the old man "I dislike Epiphone" rant.

    Over the past 10 years, I have purchased several guitars and a couple of their amps and came to the same conclusion each time....they nail the looks department and the fit / finish is very good but it ends there for me. The hollows suffer bad neck dive and don't stay in tune well. Amps all have really cheap and super thin wires along with some circuit layout errors. Epi solids are pretty decent, I owned an SG that seemed really good so I suspect the Les Pauls would be solid players....except Epiphone is going to cheapen it in areas that I wish they wouldn't like on all of their gear.

    I guess my concern for you is that you don't get to play it first, only see pictures of it. They are sharp lookers every time, but the neck dive, fret feel, scratchy pots, fragile selector switches, come with the territory as well. I would not buy any Epiphone product without getting my hands on it first....no exceptions.
     
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  16. brokeGradStudent

    brokeGradStudent TDPRI Member

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    I definitely hear that. I will surely be able to return it or resale if it’s rough. As far as electronics go, this is as close to USA as it gets and is better than fender imo for quality of electronics (marginally). I’ll be taking it to my guy on day 1 to get checked out. He is in final setup at Gibson and has shot me straight in the past about bad and good stuff. I’m most worried about the neck but that seems to be the emphasis point on this instrument.
     
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  17. Ivorytooth

    Ivorytooth Tele-Meister

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    The '59 Standard. I have one. They are very nice guitars for the money. Mine was perfect. It sounds great. I love the neck and it plays like a dream! Great fretwork and low action with no buzz.

    IMGP0177.JPG
     
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