School me on the ES335

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by ReggiedaDog, Mar 19, 2019.

  1. Bones

    Bones Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Love this color with the MOTS pickguard.
     
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  2. 63telemaster

    63telemaster Tele-Meister

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    It's a 2012 MIM with a nitro refinish and an aged guard. Previous owner had the work done by a pro.....looks even better in the flesh.

    I had a really nice blonde 335 Dot with 57 Classics but like the op I never bonded with it. The Thinline is a great option for those that just can't get on with Gibsons.
     
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  3. kelnet

    kelnet Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I'm thinking it was the amp.
     
  4. bftfender

    bftfender Friend of Leo's

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    whats there to kill ?
     
  5. Cooper

    Cooper Tele-Meister

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    Saw this thread on mobile and sent myself a reminder to come back to it. After many years owning/playing/selling/buying lots of guitars, I've decided that the simplest way to have everything is a Tele and a 335 style guitar. I know the Strat/Paul combo is supposed to me more versatile, but I think the Tele/335 can reach extremes in either direction that the Strat/Paul setup can't.

    Having said that, Gibson 335s are more status symbols than guitars. Insultingly overpriced. The above poster, John Scofield, George Benson and I all find our Ibanez semi-hollows to be superior and cheaper. I haven't shopped for guitars in a long time, but as I was leaving the music retail biz, Ibanez "Artcore" guitars had caught up with the quality of the early-2000 "Artstar" series, depending on the model. I'd put my 2002 Artstar AS120 up against any Gibson 335.

    I don't know a thing about Epiphone. Have heard great things about Heritage.

    Lastly . . . 335s are big. Ergonomics are fine as long as you're standing, but sitting they can be a bit cumbersome. Don't overlook the 339 size bodies. Ibanez also made/makes an Artist that was semi hollow, but more of a LP size. Hell of a contender in this realm.
     
  6. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I have had trouble bonding with 335 types over the years. Gawd knows I've tried. I did have '69 back in the day and liked it, but things change. Some things I've noticed:
    -Played loud they are superb and resonate well, are gutsy. I can't play that loud anywhere.
    -Played at low levels they are very trebly, woody and not resonant.
    -Tap on the top of one and it doesn't ring or bloom like some hollow bodies etc do.
    -They are heavy, quite heavy in many instances.
    -They can be uncomfortable digging into your ribs.
    -You wont change one's nature much with different pickups.

    I have tried Ibanez types, Epi's, Sheraton's, Gibsons, Motsumoku's.
    I lean toward full hollows a bit more.
     
  7. KC

    KC Friend of Leo's

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    my experience has been that it's really hard to go back and forth between the 335 & the tele/strat. everything changes: scale length, pick attack, controls, effects, the way you set your amp, everything. I can only play one at a time. If I commit to the 335, I have to not cheat and just play the 335. Get the amp & FX chain where I want it, adjust to the height and angle of the neck to where I can just relax and play. this takes a while & if I backslide with a Fender, it takes even longer.

    I was just getting rid of mine last fall when I decided to give it another shot. went on a two week trip & left the Fenders at home. Back in love.

    The best-playing of this style I've had was a '67 Epi Riviera but truth be told, the new one I've been playing lately -- a 2015 with burst buckers -- sounds better to my ear than the mini-hums in the Rio. This new one is a solid guitar from soup to nuts, expensive compared to the new Epi stuff but not crazy, American Professional range. I got it on closeout, though. List is pretty high. But I'm satisfied with this one.
     
  8. Tom TeleSlinger

    Tom TeleSlinger TDPRI Member

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    I own Eastman T386 (ES-335 style) for a couple of weeks and finally I'm beginning to like it :)
    I always used only Teles and Strats, and 335 is a completely different guitar. After a couple of days with it I wanted to trade it for another Tele, because I didn't feel comfortable with it, but I gave it some time and it was worth it.

    Gibsons have shorter scale lenght and I think it's the main difference in feel.
    I never liked humbuckers (too fat), so I plan to put Dynasonics pickups in mine 335.

    Tele is still my first choice, best guitar for everything :) But with 335 I can do few things I can't do with Tele. I guess I instinctively play it differently.
     
  9. Nubs

    Nubs Friend of Leo's

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    Now THAT made my day! Thanks for posting, that was fun to watch!
     
  10. ReggiedaDog

    ReggiedaDog Tele-Meister

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    Beautiful guitar, but Ive never got on with the Fender reissue WR pickups

    This is a great track- brilliant sound

    Nope it was the same amp (DRRI)
     
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  11. ReggiedaDog

    ReggiedaDog Tele-Meister

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    Thanks all for the responses- I understand what people are saying about Ibanez and Epis, al great guitars. IM in a lucky position where I gig a lot and can afford a Gibson if I want one, but I do think they are overpriced, however, there are some used ones locally at almost £1000 less than RRP.

    Ive looked on a few gibson sites about my original question and it appears the nomenclature for ES335 is all over the place, there are no definitove answers, I guess if I try it and like it I should just buy it...

    Out of interest has anyone played one with p90s?
     
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  12. Ess Eff

    Ess Eff Tele-Holic

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    Yes, I luv my baby bro... es339.
    .
    IMG_20160715_131808.jpg
     
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  13. Viejo

    Viejo Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    The issue I have with 335s and SGs for that matter is the location of the strap button on the neck heel. I just have a hell of a time playing them standing up.
     
  14. G.Rotten

    G.Rotten Tele-Afflicted

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    I've had a lot of 335 style guitars mostly Sheritons. However, at one point I had a Gibson Lucille.

    Oh my stars & garters!

    By far my second favourite guitar of all time. I thought it was going to be a lifer for sure. Divorce is costly. I had to make a call between the Lucille & my SG which was at the time my new favourite, & still continues to be the only guitar that is almost a part of me. I wish I never had to make that call, but it is what it is.

    Any 335 style guitar I've tried since feels like garbage (regardless of model or cost). Maybe someday I'll attempt to find mine. IMO all the Lucile's are awesome but that one was special.
     

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    Last edited: Mar 19, 2019
  15. Bob Womack

    Bob Womack Tele-Afflicted

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    Hi!

    You are asking about ES-335s and I have some experience there. Here's the deal: there are many different characters in ES-335s and they don't follow models. You have to try them out. I had access to about ten or eleven of them from Historics to plane James when I was looking into them. There were bright ones, dark ones, hard ones, smooth ones, and sweet ones. I was looking for a sweet one and found it. I was fortunate that my sweet wife saw me sniffing around and decided to give me the one I wanted as a Christmas gift.

    The particular guitar I fell in love with was a figured Cherry Memphis ES-335 DOT. It felt and sounded the way I wanted it to. It had tall frets, a '60s slim taper neck, and '57 Classic pickups.

    [​IMG]

    The body resonances on the ES-335 make it sound different from other guitars. It can do rock, blues, jazz, and fills and etc. for folk and all sorts of other genres. It has become the center of my recording session kit. I use the typical four: ES-335, Tele, Les Paul, Strat. Of those, it covers the most sonic territory.

    I should mention that Gibson scale is my home base. I spent years with the Les Paul being my only instrument so I am comfortable with Gibson necks and shouldering. I'm also familiar with how to make a humbucker cut through a mix. You can't treat humbuckers like
    single-coil pickups and expect to get good results. I see guys who know how to play Gibsons who say they can't get the sounds they want from Fenders and vice-versa. It's a big divide and takes some time and effort to cross.

    I realize that the ES-335 is an expensive guitar and there is always pressure to find a less expensive alternative. It is also a big-bodied guitar and people want something smaller. But here's the thing: Even though I have looked into a backup that might be less expensive and/or smaller, I've never found one. There's always something: smaller frets, harder sound, less body resonance. And the price is due to a whole lot of hand-work in assembling the body, applying the binding foer and aft, and doing the binding "nibs" on the end of the frets. Do remember that Gibson is one of the few makers who fret and bind BEFORE finishing and then have to trim the binding between frets and scrape the overspray off the fretboard. That's part of where the price comes from as well.

    I've written up a review of the ES-335 and it is on my site, HERE.

    Bob
     
  16. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I had P90's in an Epi ES335 I had. Also in a similar Ibanez single cut. I will say, pickups change will not entirely change the character of the guitar. I like P90's. Still... Interesting thing.. My Gretsch G3161 is less than 7 lbs. It fits perfectly in an ES335 case. So very much the same size. The 335's were mostly heavy as a brick. My two favorites were a Matsumoku knock off and a 69 Gibson I had back then. But would I feel the same today? not sure I would. I do covet a Hollow ES330 with P90's though! I have to say, I have not found that the manufacturer necessarily gets you what you want. Seems to be more the particular guitar.
     
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  17. dan1952

    dan1952 Friend of Leo's

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    I love to hear Carlton, Clapton, B.B., Freddie, and so many others playing 335's and their ilk, so when I got my 52 Reissue Tele in 1982, and realized it was NOTHING like a real 52 (my brother had a 51 Nocaster #16**), I traded the Tele immediately for a 69 Gibson ES335. Used the 335 for one night and sold it. So foreign feeling, controls hard to reach, weird on the strap, used the money for a 69 Tele that I played for years. Doesn't mean I wouldn't give a 335 another shot at some point...
     
  18. Mincer

    Mincer Tele-Holic

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    Here is my version of a single cut 335. It has a Jazz and 59 in it, and sounds remarkable: a Godin Montreal Premiere.
    [​IMG]
     
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  19. GGardner

    GGardner Tele-Afflicted

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    I have a Gibson-copy w/ 57 Classics and upgraded harness and pots. My only gripe, and it might sound shallow and petty, is that I find its shape to be somewhat uncomfortable. I'm used to doing everything (from paperwork to surfing the web to passing out) w/ a small solid body on my lap, or next to me on the couch or in bed. Not so much w/ the 335 style. Standing is no problem. But slouching w/ it on a chair takes some getting used to. On the other hand, it's pretty as all get out.


    20180114_144245.jpeg
     
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  20. LeicaBoss

    LeicaBoss Tele-Holic

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    OP. I have to tell you something very specific - there's a GOOD REASON you loved that 335 with MHS pickups. You know what must be done...

    I have an ES Les Paul (a fantastic one without f holes) that has the MHS humbuckers. My red 335 has Burstbuckers. By comparison, the BBs are lifeless, brutish, overly bass-forward, inarticulate and just wrong. The MHS pickups I have aren't potted. You can hear everything. It's articulate, hull-range, high fidelity. Loads of top end and those delicate high harmonics. If you're going to get a semi-hollow - these pickups let you get the most out of it.

    So, you loved that 335 with MHS - you know what to do.

    Below: My 2nd 335. A 1968 with... Super Distortions. Don't worry, I'll fix that sooner or later.

    [​IMG]
     
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