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80s Les Pauls pricing question..

poopie boy

Member
Messages
35
Okay guys, I'm nowhere near as experienced as you, but I'm learning a lot from this forum!

I was thinking of shopping around for a Les Paul, I like the warm (sometimes even dark) tone these have to them as opposed to my strat. I like the idea of a wine red Les Paul with a Bigsby on it, so I started doing some shopping..

Why do I keep finding late 80s models for such low prices like $600-800 while some other models are considerably more? Is there something up with these? What are the decent years for a bang for the buck Les Paul? I know some of the 50s models are going to be the best, but I can't afford that haha.
 

fierce_carrot

Member
Messages
1,879
You are finding late 80's Les Pauls for $600 to $800?

Where do you live? I want to come do some guitar shopping!
 

GCDEF

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
28,035
Except perhaps for studios, you won't find real Les Pauls for $600 - $800 unless the neck has been violently detached from the body. I've never seen a Studio with a Bigsby.
 

Stringz

Member
Messages
630
Okay guys, I'm nowhere near as experienced as you, but I'm learning a lot from this forum!

I was thinking of shopping around for a Les Paul, I like the warm (sometimes even dark) tone these have to them as opposed to my strat. I like the idea of a wine red Les Paul with a Bigsby on it, so I started doing some shopping..

Why do I keep finding late 80s models for such low prices like $600-800 while some other models are considerably more? Is there something up with these? What are the decent years for a bang for the buck Les Paul? I know some of the 50s models are going to be the best, but I can't afford that haha.
You're most likely looking at Les Paul Specials. Specials are stripped down models with no maple top or binding and cheaper hardware than is used on Standards and Deluxes. There are also other low end models that aren't considered Les Pauls issued during the 70's, 80's and 90's that have a Les Paul style body, but also with less expensive hardware and appointments. Some of those would include the Marauder, S-1, Sonex, GCC-700, the "Hawk" line, "The Paul", Challenger and I'm sure many others I am forgetting. Some of them were targeted at specific competitors models (most often Fender) and were made to be sound alikes so that someone who would be in the market for a Tele, Strat or Mustang sound but preferred the Les Paul body style would be able to find something with a similar sound and price in the Gibson lineup. Most of those models didn't last very long and really haven't kept up with their higher end cousins in price, which could be a good opportunity to buy a genuine, made in USA Gibson at a low price before people discover them and the prices soar.
 
Last edited:

Austinrocks

Member
Messages
7,020
really love my specials, so much great tone with out the decorations my 77 model had P-90s my current special has humbuckers, and the studios not bad if you like the neck, I don't like the 50s neck on the studios,
 

poopie boy

Member
Messages
35
So a studio or a special is not a "real" les paul?

From what I read the studio models were intended for studio musicians and the only things omitted from these models are ornamentations, while sound quality is exactly the same. Is this right?

Also, I know they don't come with a Bigsby but I was planning on having one installed on there.
 
Last edited:

Strat58

Member
Messages
2,124
I have a great 1982 Gibson les Paul standaard sound as good as a mine VOS R8, poeple realy give the guitars not the credit the deserve. I like the 80 Gibsons more then the 70thies sorry just mine experience.
Peace Strat58
 

Stringz

Member
Messages
630
So a studio or a special is not a "real" les paul?

From what I read the studio models were intended for studio musicians and the only things omitted from these models are ornamentations, while sound quality is exactly the same. Is this right?

Also, I know they don't come with a Bigsby but I was planning on having one installed on there.
Assuming the pickups and pots are the same on a Studio, the sound would probably be the same. The Specials used P100 pickups which don't sound like the P90's or humbuckers found in other Les Paul models. A lot of people don't like the P100's and change them.
 

fierce_carrot

Member
Messages
1,879
So a studio or a special is not a "real" les paul?

From what I read the studio models were intended for studio musicians and the only things omitted from these models are ornamentations, while sound quality is exactly the same. Is this right?

Also, I know they don't come with a Bigsby but I was planning on having one installed on there.

Studio LP's are stripped down models designed to lower the cost as Gibson wanted to put LP's in the hands of those who couldnt afford to buy Standards.
 

poopie boy

Member
Messages
35
pretty cool.. so a 1989 les paul studio for $600 would be a good buy and worth keeping to you guys? This is for "post punk" 80s influenced rock.. a-la interpol (most known comparison i can give)
 




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