Any point in ever upgrading from Les Paul Studio?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by auffredou, Mar 4, 2008.

  1. auffredou

    auffredou Member

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    First: What the hell is wrong with me?!?!?

    I had been eyeing the same strat for several months and finally went today thinking *maybe* I would put some money down on it. Ive been going back and forth forever, and tonight I tried something Ive never done before. I played a really nice Les Paul next to it at the store. I realized why Im having so much trouble going for it. I love the sound of the strat, I love the look of the strat, I love how well it works with most any equipment/rig. But this idea that I should have thought of a long time ago made me realize that I cant get used to the necks.

    I cant tell if its because Ive only played a Les Paul for most of my guitar-playing life, or what, but for some reason I become twice as fast and just sound better overall on a Les Paul. I left the store thinking "Holy Crap! Im really a Gibson guy..." Its actually a nice feeling when you can admit something like this to yourself.

    So anyway, then I considered looking at different options within the Gibson line to compliment my studio. I liked a few SG's that I played, but couldnt really get used to the 335. While I played better on most of them than I did on the strat, it was the Les Pauls that felt like home.

    So, ANYWAY.... my question is this: If I am happy with the look/feel of my studio, is there any point in upgrading? I guess Im talking sound wise. From everything Ive heard, the studio is going to sound almost exactly the same as a Standard or something, it just doesnt look as fancy. What about the VOS ones? I always assumed there was reason to upgrade, but now Im wondering how much of a difference it makes.
     
  2. Johnnytone

    Johnnytone Supporting Member

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    The VOS ones are the Historic series. There are PLENTY of differences between them and the Studios, from construction methods to wood selection to pickups, etc.

    There really is no good reason to upgrade if you're happy, but I think you should take your Studio with you and try it against a few other LP models and see what you think. I have a Vintage Mahogany Studio and a 58 Historic and they are both fantastic, yet sound and feel totally different.
     
  3. auffredou

    auffredou Member

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    Thanks Johnny, Im wondering what I would think if I played them next to each other. I dont think Ill ever get rid of my studio, so there has to be a reason to own both is the problem. If one of them speaks to me enough, maybe I can just keep the studio as a backup. Gonna be a while before I could afford one of those VOS ones though.

    By the way, I played the 1960 VOS I think it was called in Dark Burst. Definitely my favorite. Felt so similar to my studio that I could play it right away, it just felt a little nicer.
     
  4. rooster

    rooster Member

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    There are Studios that measure up in feel, playability, and tone to anything turned out on the high-end line. Not many, to be fair, but they're out there, it's wood, and every piece is different. If you've got one, plug it into the same amps with the top-of-the-line ones that you've been eyeing. If you prefer yours, it would be foolish to trade it in for some phantom "mojo" that others tell you that you need.

    IMO, if you get the best sound out of a lower priced instrument, you're way ahead of the game.

    rooster.
     
  5. Johnnytone

    Johnnytone Supporting Member

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    I'm guessing you would think the Historic has a clearer tone with more range in the pickups, while the Studio will be more focused and a little darker sounding.
     
  6. Custom50

    Custom50 Member

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    The only reason to upgrade is if you find one you like more. I used a studio for years and it never gave me any trouble. It was a great guitar. I'm in the same situation as you, I just can't play fenders very well, as a result I own 3 gibsons and no strats.
     
  7. auffredou

    auffredou Member

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    Glad to hear someone else is in the same boat. I WANT to want a strat so bad. Its nice to think about, and then when I come close to buying one I cant justify it. I was looking to get a completely different sound option in having two guitars, and I dont know what Gibson will be different enough to satisfy that. Thats why Im wondering If I should just accept it for what it is and stick with only a Les Paul of some type.
     
  8. Drew68

    Drew68 Supporting Member

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    The Studio may reside towards the bottom of the Les Paul line but it is still a very respectable $1000+ instrument. At that price, you should expect that it leaves the factory with excellent hardware and electronics. And it does. The 490R/498T pickups are not crap. Not by a long shot. They are good "Jack of all trades" pickups and you can pretty well cover all the bases with a set.

    Pickups are a tough proposition. You can't really test them out without buying them and going through the hassle of installing them. And if you don't like the ones you just bought, you're pretty much SOL and stuck with them or trying to sell them for a loss on eBay.

    My advice is that if you like your pickups, don't upgrade. What's the point? Better to spend that $200+ for a cool pedal or something.
     
  9. eru

    eru Member

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    If you know you love what you've got...why would you upgrade?

    IMHO, don't shut the door on it, just don't pursue it so hard. If you fall in love with something, you'll want it, and that'll be it.
     
  10. elgalad

    elgalad Senior Member

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    If you like the feel of the Les Paul, but want something a little bit different, might I suggest a Flying V?
     
  11. KSKONDOR

    KSKONDOR Member

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    I agree with everyone...if you love your guitar now, keep the money in a saving account and keep adding to it, and forget about a new guitar. It's like love, it can happen when you least expect it....espescially if you check the forums every day!
     
  12. schaljo

    schaljo LEGEND

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    If you like the neck on your studio and want to bond with a strat, try the EJ. The two necks feel very similar to my hands.
     
  13. the_Chris

    the_Chris It's All Been Done Before Gold Supporting Member

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    Every guitar is going to sound different from the next, even after factoring in wood types and thickness.

    If you really like the sound of your Studio, you're definitely in the right spot. People think they need to go Historic Custom Shop to find a decent sounding piece and that's not true. Take it from me - I've purchased 3 different custom shop Gibsons sight unseen and I'll be darned if the two standard production Gibsons I picked up were constructed and sounded better (because I got to be more critical playing them in person). Don't look at the pricetag, just close your eyes and listen to this instrument and you might be surprised what you find. If your Studio isn't a great piece, sell it and look for another guitar that is.

    As far as Strats go and their necks, schaljo is correct, the EJ is pretty beefy and might feel more at home. The only thing I could see as a deterrent would be the scale length. The only other thought I had was going the Warmoth route for the neck on the strat. They offer Gibson scaled Fender necks and if you ordered one of their thicker contours (the boat size one I had was pretty massive) I think you'd be right at home. Just bear in mind part of the strat sound is the scale length, so it's not going to be quite as snappy and percussive, but in terms of playability it'll be right up there with the Gibsons.
     
  14. Birddog

    Birddog Member

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    http://www.thegearpage.net/board/showthread.php?t=360846

    I didn't start the above thread, but contributed some photos and opinions about Studio vs. Standard, since I bought both recently (2007 models).

    Check it out, some good information.

    My opinion is that the Studio is fine for whatever you need to do, and the Standard is just a bit better, and a lot prettier.
     
  15. Custom50

    Custom50 Member

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    I know how you feel. I absolutely love stratocasters, i love how they look, sound, and I love what other people do with them, but I can't play them nearly as well as guitars with the gibson scale length. I've been playing gibson style guitars forever and i think it's just a comfort thing. The first good guitar i ever got was a les paul copy, then i upgraded to the gibson and played it for years and years. Maybe if i got into the habit of playing a strat regularly i could get used to it. Who knows?
     

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