Best value ES335?

L3rxst

Member
Messages
31
Without any reservation, and compared to my genuine Custom Shop 355
Harley Benton HB35+ is unbeatable. I have 3 of them
Ibanez AS53 or AS73 are both excellent I own both too
 

Stropheus

Member
Messages
13
One more for Eastman. Got a used T185 for $1100 and replaced basically everything - re-fret, Sunbear pickups, Gunstreet wiring, lightweight aluminum tailpiece. Completely customized, still cheaper than a Gibson and it's a jaw-droppingly wonderful guitar.
 

Earl Foote

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
199
I suggest you look at Epiphone as well. I have the ES-339 which has a slightly smaller body than the 335. Its my favorite guitar. About $550
 

lcfparty35

Member
Messages
927
The Eastmans are nice. Try to play one first. I didn’t jive with mine but there was nothing wrong with it. It was their take on a Gretsch 6120. I didn’t like the finish on mine but other people seemed wowed. My issues were very subjective little things (I guess it all is) but I’ve played some with very wide/thin necks (their lp jr model). So, try to check it out. As you see, many love them, and they are well made at a bargain, for sure.
 

L3rxst

Member
Messages
31
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PTS

Member
Messages
437
Epiphone dot with pickup swap (I went with Fralin PAF), and you're golden. They play and sound the same as a Gibson, plus way cheaper / looks closer to the real thing than something like an Eastman (the split/angled block inlays and wide tapered headstock mar it's appearance IMO).
 

budg

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,630
So many good choices these days. It depends on your budget. Do you have a “not to exceed ___ dollars ?” I would figure what you can afford and shop for those and lower priced ones as well. Personally I think Gibson makes a great 335 right out of the box. I would never buy a guitar hoping to make it into a great guitar. Buy one that’s already great. If that’s a 300 dollar guitar , so be it. If it’s at the max of your budget , then don’t fret it. You have to decide if you are just looking for a 335 type that is the best bang for your buck or you are looking for the best 335 type that you can afford. I find great value in getting what you want the first time.
 

Redraider66

Member
Messages
72
Ibanez AS93FM is great. Such a great feel and pickups sound classic. Got mine before I knew about Eastman. Only ave Eastman acoustic but based on that one would not hesitate on an Eastman T486
 

LordByron

The Dude abides!
Messages
9,676
The only drawback to the Epi is the “D”shaped necks.Not everyone bonds with it.I have 2 Epis,a Casino & an SG,both with that weird flat-backed “D”shape.Nice,but not intuitive like a “C”shape.
The current IBG Epi 335s don't have the "D" neck. They have nice, beefy late 50's C necks. Not baseball bats, like the '58 LPs, but definitely beefier than the slimmer 60's necks.

I love the neck on my IBG Epi 335.
 
Messages
24
I was blown away when I got my Ibanez AS73. I haven't even thought about changing pickups on it. 400 bucks. IMO the best value.
I got a pair of PAF Masters when I bought the AS73 assuming I would swap PUPs ASAP but now I can save those for when I get some time to build a guitar from scratch!
 

saddletramp77

Member
Messages
319
All of my responses were pretty much covered in the first page! Allow me to concur:

-Heritage
-Eastman
-Guild/DeArmond
-Epiphone “inspired by” ES-335(the electronics in these are far more legit than any predecessor)
-Epiphone Sheraton II(I own an early 90’s MIK and it’s honestly incredible for what I paid, the stock pickups sound good but I plan on swapping the wiring hardness at a minimum)

Also Gibson made an ES-333 in the mid aughts that can still be found somewhat affordably. They’re just ES-335’s with a satin finish, like the “worn” SG’s/Les Pauls, V’s of the same time period. Additionally they made an ES-335 Studio(gloss finish but no binding like an LP Studio) that I’ve seen go for $1500 or so.

And don’t forget your MIJ Gibby knockoffs like Tokai, Greco, Burny, Edwards, et al.

Happy Semi-Hunting!
 

Telechamp

Member
Messages
2,624
I really liked everything about my Ibanez AS73 except the pickups. I could have swapped them out, but I didn't feel like fooling with that, so I sold it. It was a very good guitar, though.

Then the great CME Gibson Memphis blowout happened, and I snagged a brand new 2017 Gibson 335 Studio for $670..

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