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$500-ish "335" - Ibanez or Epi??

Messages
226
I am looking for a 335-style guitar around the $500-ish mark, and am looking at either an Ibanez AS93 / AS73 or a used Epi Casino or Sheraton. Does anyone have experience with these guitars that could give a subjective comparison?

I am mainly interested in the acoustic resonance properties, playability, wood quality, and finish, as I will probably end up putting a new nut, Tone Pros bridge, and new PUPs in whatever I get, so the quality of the hardware and electronics is not that important to me.

Thanks!
Rick
 

MartinPiana

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,456
I've found the Ibanez more consistent, but I have a buddy who has a very good Sheraton and I played another good Sheraton in a shop, so there are some good Epis out there. I'd recommend playing before buying, especially the Epis.
 

dk123123dk

Member
Messages
3,892
Check out a Schecter Corsair. Comes with quality hardware, and they offer a version with a bigsby, or stop bar.

dk
 

Waxhead

Member
Messages
6,120
I tested all the 335 copies last year and bought a Sheraton 2 for $US500.
Looked and played the best IMHO, especially with PUP in neck position.
 
M

Member 995

I bought an AS73 for under $300 and have really enjoyed playing it. The sound doesn't have the low end extension of a higher end 335 (I had a Heritage 535 before), but it has a really nice clarity. I actually find the playability of the Ibanez to be better than the Heritage, as the fingerboard sits higher off of the body, improving upper fret access.

I'll probably put some new pickups in the Ibanez and do some minor fretwork on it. All in all, a great value.

Bryan
 

lowenzz

Member
Messages
212
Ibanez AS103 custom $540.00, just recently got this one. My first Semihollow and I am very happy. Truely an excellent playing and sounding guitar.



 
Messages
226
Now I see why there are several threads about inexpensive 335-style gits on TGP...seems like lots of options, more than I knew...The Corsair does look pretty nice, and already has a graphite nut and Tone Pros bridge, plus coil taps. That's a really nice Ibanez too in the previous post...hmmmm
 

Oakley

Member
Messages
982
I've had a number of 335 type guitars and I also have a Gibson '83 335. I liked the Vantage 635 enough to get two of them. But it is the exact same body, made by Samick, as the 90's Epiphone Dot. The neck is maple and thinner - good for someone with small hands. It's no longer made.

But the one I like the best is the Hofner Verythin CT, made in China. The fret work on the one I have is just way above any other Asian guitar I have played. I was going to put a set of Seth Lovers in it but I'm digging the stock pickups now. Here are a couple of YouTube clips - one fusioney and the other clean jazz tones:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AppMZqzbApo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxk3kuic7d0
 

chucke99

Member
Messages
5,121
Ibanez AS103 custom $540.00, just recently got this one. My first Semihollow and I am very happy. Truely an excellent playing and sounding guitar.
+1. I have one too and love it. But note that this would be a used guitar price, off eBay. New they are $800.
 

lowenzz

Member
Messages
212
+1. I have one too and love it. But note that this would be a used guitar price, off eBay. New they are $800.

No sir, This is what I paid for a new one. I got to pick from 3, all had very different tops. It was new in the box, still wrapped in plastic and hangtags. FWIW, the fret work is immaculate. It was marked at $600.00, and I got 10% off, I've known the dealer for at least 20 years.

$540.00 out the door for real.
 

chucke99

Member
Messages
5,121
No sir, This is what I paid for a new one. I got to pick from 3, all had very different tops. It was new in the box, still wrapped in plastic and hangtags. FWIW, the fret work is immaculate. It was marked at $600.00, and I got 10% off, I've known the dealer for at least 20 years.

$540.00 out the door for real.
Please PM me the name of the shop, then! ;)
 

MartinPiana

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
4,456
The reverend Manta Ray is another one to check out in that price range.
Used, if you're lucky. I had one and loved it, but it doesn't sound much like a 335. Not much of an airy sound at all, more like a chambered guitar.
 

steven.rogers

Member
Messages
1,629
I've had a number of 335 type guitars and I also have a Gibson '83 335. I liked the Vantage 635 enough to get two of them. But it is the exact same body, made by Samick, as the 90's Epiphone Dot. The neck is maple and thinner - good for someone with small hands. It's no longer made.

But the one I like the best is the Hofner Verythin CT, made in China. The fret work on the one I have is just way above any other Asian guitar I have played. I was going to put a set of Seth Lovers in it but I'm digging the stock pickups now. Here are a couple of YouTube clips - one fusioney and the other clean jazz tones:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AppMZqzbApo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xxk3kuic7d0
That's really nice quality tone, especially from Youtube. Great swing feel too! :AOK
 

grungebob

Member
Messages
876
don't forget about Tokai, here in the uk at least you can get a Tokai 335 copy for £289 at current exchange rates thats $433. Played the Ibanez recently didn't like it too much but i bet with pickup swop it'd be great. Only Epi's ive tried are the dots and didn't like the fret ends cutting my hand off, but man I'm gassing for the schecter corsair so much right now after doing a quick google on them! damn you all for making me spend money ;)
 




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