School me on alternatives to fender and gibson

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by AJ Ray, Oct 9, 2019.

  1. AJ Ray

    AJ Ray TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    91
    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2012
    Location:
    dundee
    Not so much fender but I feel gibson is getting more expensive than I could have imagined when I bought my first all those years ago. I currently own a strat and no gibson at all anymore and I find myself looking at alternative and cheaper makes but I don't really know much about them.
    What would you guys recommend as a good quality make? Regardless of the name
     
    Greggorios and LowCaster like this.
  2. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    6,812
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Location:
    Godzone
    PRS is one that springs to mind. Heritage too.

    Don't discount the faded and Legacy/Tribute Gibsons. The finishes are not shiny but the wood and hardware is the same.

    Melody Makers and Juniors have nice thick necks, good hummers or P90s. Often they're a setup away from being great giggers. I've had four recently through my hands - awesome spanksters
     
  3. NewKid

    NewKid Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    443
    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Location:
    Seattle
    PRS SE guitars are great quality and more affordable.

    Sterling by Music Man are also well-made guitars. The Valentine signature offers a roasted maple neck for $600.

    I just bought a used Squier Tele Deluxe that is a tremendous value for $300. I put a $46 Gotoh bridge on it to make it even better.

    I never liked the Epiphones because of that cut-off at the edges headstock but I read that line is getting an update soon.

    Finally, I think some of the Gibson SGs are more in line with Fender pricing. That’s the only Gibson model I would consider. However, I would get another 10 Fenders first before buying a Gibson.
     
    dannyh, TeleTex82 and MuddyDitch like this.
  4. dlew919

    dlew919 Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,729
    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2012
    Location:
    Sydney
    Epipjone for Gibson. Cheaper than PRS and closer copies than PRS Some think they’re better then Gibson. I have a casino that’s pretty nice indeed. Epiphone is owned by Gibson so if you want that, that’s where’s id start.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    The Angry Possum and Greggorios like this.
  5. AAT65

    AAT65 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    3,753
    Joined:
    May 29, 2016
    Location:
    West Lothian, Scotland
    PRS SE are good guitars, and there are a lot of Indonesian- or Korean-made offerings from other manufacturers: I have a very nice Shergold Masquerader, made in Korea, solid rosewood neck, Seymour Duncan pickups, sort of Strat-o-Tele setup (but they have other options).
    Going up a notch the PRS S2 guitars are great value for money IMHO — American-made (if that interests you) though with some imported parts, excellent build and finish: the costs savings are things like simpler body carved and scarf-jointed necks. The Mira is disappearing but the Starla and Vela are very nice guitars indeed, and the Standard 22 and Standard 24 are great value for money if you don’t mind the scratchplate design.
     
    matrix, Greggorios and MuddyDitch like this.
  6. VintageSG

    VintageSG Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    3,248
    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2016
    Location:
    Yorkshire
  7. JIMMY JAZZMAN

    JIMMY JAZZMAN TDPRI Member

    Age:
    68
    Posts:
    97
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2019
    Location:
    Baltimore
    Gretsch, overseas models have fit and finish of low end Gibsons and for $300-500, a steal.
    Also Airline guitars, purchased a Twin Tone for $500 and it's pickups sound better than most
    Gibsons and more versatile. SO MANY GUITARS, SO LITTLE TIME.
     
    MilwMark, DekeDog, jjudas and 2 others like this.
  8. Stratwrangler

    Stratwrangler Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    228
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2019
    Location:
    The world
    @VintageSG , Great suggestion gs has always made fantastic guitars. Had a gs in the 90s and was much nicer than most gibsons.
    And you can spec them up to how you want for less than £1300.
    Nice teles that make now as well.
     
    dragonfire709 likes this.
  9. Stratwrangler

    Stratwrangler Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    228
    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2019
    Location:
    The world
    bettyseldest likes this.
  10. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    8,373
    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2014
    Location:
    UK
    Fretking.. superbly made instruments for the money. British designed.

    https://fret-king.com/

    https://fret-king.com/black-label.html

    My Esprit with 3x P90 has quickly become my no. 1.

    Gibson like neck with much better upper fret access. Great tones.

    Trevor Wilkinson of Wilkinson hardware fame designs them.


    Gordon Smith is a good recommendation too.
     
  11. beagle

    beagle Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    60
    Posts:
    2,708
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2010
    Location:
    Yorkshire
    Tokai.
     
    41144, Fendereedo, ElJay370 and 5 others like this.
  12. RockinforJesus

    RockinforJesus TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    83
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2016
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    G. R. E. T. S. C. H.
     
  13. '64 Tele

    '64 Tele Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    782
    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2013
    Location:
    NW Arkansas
    I picked up a PRS SE Custom 24 (Korean) and initially couldn't bond with it (HOT pickups) but after
    putting a set of Seymour Duncan Seth Lovers in it, it soon was a favorite guitar.
    A couple years later, I found an older SE Custom 22 semi hollow (with the Rickenbacker style swoosh shape "F hole") that
    has a really nice, huge neck and it light as a feather. I put a set of Seymour Duncans in it and another inexpensive/killer guitar.
    The initial draw was a humbucker style guitar with Tele like controls and Strat like shape.
    Also, the Custom 24 trem really works well and doesn't have tuning issues.
     
    bcorig likes this.
  14. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    7,781
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2014
    Location:
    Lions & Tigers oh Mi !
    .

    PRS SE (all import), S2 (guitar MIA, electronics import), Core (all MIA) are a good option. Do note that 22 fret models will be more LP, 24 frets gets SG type of tones, due to pickup placements.

    Epiphone. If you seek a light weight guitar, go with an Epiphone Special Junior. If you want something close to Gibson weight and everything go with the top end Custom carve tops. If you need the "Gibson Sound!" then get a set of Gibson pickups AND Gibson controls (pots and caps are as important as the pickups) to swap into any of the Epiphones or other brands.

    Gretsch, I think is owned by Fender, right? Brighter pickups generally.

    Reverend Guitars, MIK import that are nice

    Harley Benton. They have a US website and warehouse. You can buy 1-3 guitars for the same $35 shipping fee for the whole order.
    SC-450 and SC-550 models have proven to be fantastic values.

    Overall ... if you want a top end playing experience, find a local guitar tech who can level frets with a string-tension-jig or PLEK and a $50 beater Epiphone Special II can play like a $4,000 guitar. No the guitar won't have the cache with your buddies of that $4,000 guitar but it will play like it.

    .
     
  15. neilybob100

    neilybob100 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    121
    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2018
    Location:
    UK
    Fernandes, Burny, Tokai or Greco. But I prefer the 80's/early 90's Japanese built models.
    Edit - Was also meant to say amazing quality for the price and half the cost of a Gibbo or Fender.
    [​IMG][​IMG]

    Sent from my CLT-L29 using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2019
    felis, ElJay370, beagle and 1 other person like this.
  16. uriah1

    uriah1 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    20,332
    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    Around
    Get a used Gibby cheap and the price will be
    in line with the higher end alternatives. imho
    All depends if you are looking for solid or hollow.
    Some hollow alternatives will leave you wanting.
     
    StrangerNY likes this.
  17. Jupiter

    Jupiter Telefied Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    23,957
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Location:
    Osaka, Japan
    Ibanez
    [​IMG]
     
    bcorig, Dennyf, DekeDog and 7 others like this.
  18. Telecaster88

    Telecaster88 Tele-Meister

    Age:
    51
    Posts:
    222
    Joined:
    May 9, 2019
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Epiphone!
     
    JayFreddy and Obsessed like this.
  19. Durtdog

    Durtdog Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    7,526
    Joined:
    May 19, 2004
    Location:
    Tennessee
    I'll second Ibanez, and throw in Yamaha. I own a Yamaha and 2 Ibbys, superb quality and playability.

    Bought a Yamaha Revstar a while back, unbelievably great guitar, especially for the money.
     
    JayFreddy and Deathray like this.
  20. dickey

    dickey Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,169
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Location:
    Florida
    Although they are almost impossible to find & ridiculously expensive, there is nothing, IMHO, that can match the feel & tone of an original Mosrite Ventures Mark I. Here is a pic of my '65. It is a tone monster, and I got it ridiculously cheap. Having said that, Hallmark makes, IMHO, the best guitars on the planet nowadays, even better than the Mosrite it emulates. Fit & finish is second to none; the tone is kinda like vintage P-90s on steroids; output is much more than the average humbucker...but with the clarity of a bolt-on neck. Best vibrato in the business. They can be had brand new from the company for under a grand. Twins.jpg
    Here is a pick of my Mosrite next to my Hallmark MOAM...
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2019
    JayFreddy and rz350 like this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.