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Ack!! I WANT to LOVE LP's, but man, I must be finding the duds!

Cgkindler

Member
Messages
6,245
Saw this gorgeous Seafoam Green LP in an email from GC.

Went out there and low and behold they had one on the shelf. It's really a sharp looking guitar!

I picked it up, and went through 6 different amps, and not a single one of them could make this guitar sound good. NO position, no tone or volume pot adjustments, nothing.

Tried 2 others, and simply couldn't find one that sounded full and warm. THEN the LAST one I tried, a LP Standard in Natural Wood finish (all of them had 57 pups) sounded good. NOT great, but good.

Absolutely drives me NUTS - I want to love these guitars dearly, simply because they have the look, that timeless and great look, but simply put I haven't found one I've liked.
I've tried from $399 EPI to a $8999 LP in the Platinum room.


I understand if I switched out the caps, or had different pots, pups, wiring, shielding, setups, strings, wood conditioning, ect....that they'd be IN - but in my head at $2k and up I'd expect the thing to be good to go. Maybe put a new set of strings and make sure that the setup didn't change during transit, but man.....



Of course - any of you have times where NO GUITAR sounds or feels good? Then the likewise EVERYTHING you pick up feels nice?


It'd be great to get some specific recommendations on models and series. I like NOT so thick necks, so I've been looking for 60's style necks.....

Any thoughts?
 

RockinRob

Member
Messages
1,026
man I just don't see the huge disparity amongst "good" sounding upper end Gibsons that some people seem to experience. However, I have definitely been fiooled many times by the acoustics of the show floor. sometimes the room is such that it makes everything sound like crap, or conversely a room is so good that even cheaper guitars sound awesome.
 

esoteric pete

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,861
you need to play some historic series gibsons. in the regular memphis line it can be harder to find a winner, IMO...

even the worst historic ive ever played was a little better than one of the "good" memphis models...

if you want a good one and cant find one you like from the standard line, and also dont want to pony up for a good re-issue, then maybe its not the right time to get an LP...
 
Messages
5,050
Maybe you just don't like Les Pauls. :dunno

I own 2, both from the 90's. A Standard and a Studio. They're Gibson USA models, for us mere mortals. But they're both fantastic guitars, especially the studio, that one kills.

I haven't been impressed with any new Gibsons i've played over the past 3 or 4 years or so in trips to the stores. Maybe i'm just used to my older Gibsons. But if I was going to buy again, i'd go straight to the used market and get the same era as the 3 Gibsons I already own.
 
Messages
6,841
Maybe they're just not for you, at the moment or indefinitely. You want to love them because of "the look," but that has nothing to do with sound.

People have different tastes and needs, and right now it seems that a Les Paul won't meet them.
 

ixnay

Member
Messages
4,387
Sounds like Les Pauls just aren't for you.

I've owned dozens and they all sounded good to me.

On the other hand, I'm not a huge fan of the tones I get from a lot of Fender style guitars...
 
Messages
666
The historic les Paul's I've played were real nice, sounded like you imagine when you think of a les paul. The USA les Paul's I've played have been good sometimes but are often kind of muddy and lifeless, the proverbial blanket over your amp sound. Which is really too bad, I am not so snobbish that I'd rather have a more expensive guitar for the sake of it, in fact I like all the bells and whistles on the standard les paul, but alas, it's just not the same as an R9 or R7 etc.

Maybe one day I'll find a great bright clear sounding les paul in the standard or traditional format!

So yeah I feel you on this. And I would not say that les Paul's aren't for me, they are, they just have to be the right one.
 

Mandrax

Member
Messages
1,602
Go play a historic and see what you think. If you still don't like them, maybe it's time to forget about them.
 

mcgruff

Senior Member
Messages
693
Mostly tone is down to pickup, amp and speaker/cab. The guitar itself will make a better or worse version of a given P-A-S formula but there really isn't any style of guitar which can't do a "full warm" sound of some kind.
 

Ape Factory

Member
Messages
2,504
I feel like I'm beating a dead horse on one end and on the other I don't want his guitars to get too popular and have the prices go up but check out www.corsaguitars.com. Larry makes them by hand, you pick your specs, top, color, NECK SIZE etc...and the LCPG model just can't be beat for the money. Rediculous how good they are.
 
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mcgruff

Senior Member
Messages
693
PS: maybe try some Collings, track down a Yamaha SG2000, or if $9k guitars are in budget maybe have one made to your own specs.
 

Custom50

Member
Messages
8,696
They're just not for you man.

I have a similar problem with strats; I can make any strat sound like total crap then pass it to the next guy and he'll make it sound amazing.
 

Cgkindler

Member
Messages
6,245
Right on fellas, I think you guys are right on the money. They're just not for me :-(

Thanks for the candid responses! Sometimes I just need to hear what I'm thinking!!

I will say, I can make my Parker Fly Deluxe sound AWESOME! Lol. (To me at least haha)
 

David Garner

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
6,993
Historic or used is the way to go. I had similar issues with the newer ones. I know people who have good ones, but the '93 Standard I recently got from the emporium has a '59 profile neck and is well set up. It's also well dinged up but I'm okay with that. I got a Tonetail bridge, '57 Classics and wired it 50's style with PIO caps and it's perfect.

Some folks just don't like any LP, and that's cool. But if you really want one, get an Historic or try some used ones and see if you like those options better. It worked for me.
 

doc

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
7,375
I think the price point for a really good sounding Fender type guitar is much lower than for a Gibson type generally. Also, I've decided that to some degree on some models there is almost no getting around modding them if you want them to sound great. I'm not a fan of the stock Nashville bridge - anything where the vibration has to go through a lot of pot metal to get to the wood is generally problematic. Having said that, there are some things a Fender type is just a lot better for, and some things a Gibson is a lot better for.
 

LionVerse

Anhedonic Misanthrope
Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,623
What do you like? What guitars and amps do you have? What do you listen to? What do you play?
 

pattste

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,816
you need to play some historic series gibsons. in the regular memphis line it can be harder to find a winner, IMO...

even the worst historic ive ever played was a little better than one of the "good" memphis models...

if you want a good one and cant find one you like from the standard line, and also dont want to pony up for a good re-issue, then maybe its not the right time to get an LP...
He's talking about a Les Paul. They are not made in Memphis and never were. Both the production and custom shop Les Paul guitars are made in Nashville.

You are thinking of the semi-hollows like the ES-335, the Historic models were made (or at least finished) in Nashville. This is no longer the case as they're all made in Memphis now.
 

daa2202

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
814
Right on fellas, I think you guys are right on the money. They're just not for me :-(

Thanks for the candid responses! Sometimes I just need to hear what I'm thinking!!

I will say, I can make my Parker Fly Deluxe sound AWESOME! Lol. (To me at least haha)
They're not for me, either. I have owned a bunch of different ones at various times over the last 30 years. I sold the last one about 18 months ago, and honestly haven't missed it.

If you're looking for something else to try, may I humbly suggest a PRS 408 Maple Top. Just try it out. If you don't like the "bling" of a flame-top PRS, they can also be had in black, white, or goldtop. Since you like "not-so-thick" necks, see if you can find one with the "Pattern Thin" neck carve.
 






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