Did Gibson Actually Improve on the Les Paul Design with the SG?? - SG Love..

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by Yamariv, May 2, 2019.

  1. Dashface

    Dashface Member

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    I’ve always loved both.

    Sadly, I’ve sold every SG I ever owned, and I let a friend of mine borrow my only Les Paul Standard and he took it when he moved to France.... Soooooo, I’m out of the club at the moment.

    But I love em both :)
     
  2. Seth L

    Seth L Member

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    I've sold every Les Paul I ever owned and kept all the SGs. They're much more prolateriat.
     
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  3. aliensporebomb

    aliensporebomb Member

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    I always seemed to like players known for SG: Zappa, Rundgren, Krieger, etc.

    My friend has a really nice one he keeps but he doesn't do much with it. Drives me nuts so I always tune it when I'm over.
     
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  4. Daytona57

    Daytona57 Member

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    I like the SG but the ergonomics with the neck dive are impossible for me.

    A wanted to pick up a SG for slide and I have to sit to play guitar. I played several and the neck dive was prohibitive, trying to balance the neck and slide lightly was not happening.

    I am continuing to use my Les Paul, for slide, better balance and ergonomics. I prefer the neck on the Les Paul even though the higher access on the SG is nice, if you can play it.

    YMMV
     
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  5. jvin248

    jvin248 Member

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    .

    There's a youtube video of a film with Elvis holding an SG getting ready for movie shot and he's not happy with the SG at all. Kind of funny. I tried to find it again a few months back and lacked the google kung fu that day.

    The LP has the marks of a single or few designers while the SG has committee all over it. They badly wanted a Strat Fighter and tried to go with what they thought made it different than the LP at the time.

    Weak neck to body joint, somewhat fixed later on.
    Still weak headstock design from the LP, this is kind of baffling how Gibson has not fixed this for both guitars.
    Neck joint construction forced pushing the neck pickup further back toward the bridge than the 24 frets did -- this is practically like switching a Strat from the neck to middle pickup.
    If you switch from a Strat to an SG you feel like you are playing stage left due to the strap button locations and bridge position.
    Neck dive.
    Kind of a goofy body design, it's become iconic only because AC/DC, etc played it through all the famous rock song years.
    Skinny neck
    Wonky tremolos trying to match the Strat while staying clear of patents.

    The did get right
    Light weight
    24 frets for some players
    Low price, relative to LP

    Primarily the low price is what kept the SG popular with players and with formative bands like ACDC could get them cheap in a pawn shop. It still remains the cheap entry to owning a Gibson in the general product catalog.

    I have both a vintage Gibson SG and a modern Epiphone G-400. The Epi has a thicker and heavier body than the vintage and I actually like it a lot better. Tone is good. I also don't get that headstock breakage anxiety problem with the Epi -- so that one gets all the SG play time.

    .
     
  6. Seth L

    Seth L Member

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    They also look cool as hell and sound amazing. They also weigh less than a motorcycle.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2019
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  7. flatiron.putt.putt

    flatiron.putt.putt Member

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    What's better than an SG, but very close in terms of tone?

    Considering the scale, pickups, and woods used, perhaps a double-cut mahogany PRS with 2 HB's or p90s?

    Edit: better in terms of design, ergonomics, neck-dive, etc.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2019
  8. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Member

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    An SG can do a Les Paul better than a Paul can do an SG.

    Played right an SG can get into Tele chicken-pickin' territory, too.
     
  9. 1973Marshall

    1973Marshall Member

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    The SG is a hit for a reason. There are a couple of things that might have made them better such as a slightly thicker body to prevent neck dive or weak neck joints. Other than that, the proof on live stages and all-time great albums is very telling of how great the SG turned out.

    In a way, the challenge is to stop comparing it to the Les Paul and look at the SG as a totally separate design and entity. It shouldn't be so hard. Early marketing aside, the Les Paul and SG are quite different aside from scale, frets and pickups. The body and neck give such a vastly different tone and feel that they really aren't an evolution of one another.
     
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  10. Seth L

    Seth L Member

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    They aren't vastly different in sound.
     
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  11. 1973Marshall

    1973Marshall Member

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    Depends on how you're making your argument. On a loud stage with lots of gain... who knows.

    In a studio on very specific applications I've repeatedly found they are quite different just in bass and midrange content alone and that's before you get into the litany of variables accounted for by individual differences of instruments.

    By and large most electrics can argued as planks of wood with different pickups to get a nice, compressed, amplified tone - this was essentially Les Paul's own concept with inventing "The Log" then Les Paul. In that case none of them are "vastly different" from the Steinberger all the way to the Super Strat. On the surface a SuperStrat with HBs can be made to sound like a LP. Heck, if gets even more interesting when you think Eric Johnson played Cliffs on a 335, most people think it's a Strat (which he mostly used live), yet you'd be hard pressed to tell him apart playing it on an SG as he toured with the past few years. Along those lines none of them are "vastly different".

    Now back to TGP where we debate tonewoods, wire gauge on pickups, capacitors and so on... I'd argue the SG and Les Paul are vastly different. If the word "vastly" is the conundrum... then let's say they're "pretty effin different" :)
     
  12. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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    This is how I think of it...
    Les Paul
    [​IMG]
    SG
    [​IMG]
    FIrst position chords are W---A---Y out there!

    The late 60's Les Paul necks weren't THAT small, just not like baseball bats, either...

    The People's guitar...
     
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  13. JDutch

    JDutch Member

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    The '61 and '63 split-window are my favorite Corvettes of all time. You have excellent taste. I'd love to have a '61 in black with silver coves and a red interior and a '63 split window in Cadillac silver mist with a black interior. Both cars look fantastic in red, however.
     
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  14. 27sauce

    27sauce Member

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    No, but the early ‘60’s necks sure were, generally.

    I have a baseball bat ‘60 melody maker, and had a ‘59 junior with the skinniest neck I’ve ever had on a Gibson. There are exceptions. I have yet to come across ‘61/‘62 neck that wasn’t tiny. I’m sure there’s one out there.
     
  15. Angstwulf

    Angstwulf Member

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    Do the Les Paul DC's (especially the standard double cuts) fill in that gap between the Les Paul and the SG's?
     
  16. 27sauce

    27sauce Member

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    In true Gibson fashion, I think they missed the mark with the specs, and tried to cram BS proprietary hardware down consumer's throats.

    The fact that you couldn't just go to a shop and get a humbucker equipped SG with a stop bar and tune o matic bridge just baffles me. The sideways vibrola, maestro, short and long vibrolas on mid-high and models? No Thanks.
     
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  17. 27sauce

    27sauce Member

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    This POS alone weighs more than an SG Junior. Did Triumph design it? this is NOT an improvement over anything before it.
    [​IMG]

    I had a '62 Custom that weighed as much as my R8. Nice to look at, though.
     
  18. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

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    Maybe Gibson put that contraption to balance out the neck dive?
     
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  19. 27sauce

    27sauce Member

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    That’s another thing...why the big headstock on the Standard?

    I’ve had many juniors and specials that I’ve loved. Can’t recall a bad one. Nice balance, no dive...

    Customs and standards have always left me trying to love them despite their faults.

    I want a great ‘64 Standard really bad. I’ve had bad luck with them.
     
  20. Bodhisattva

    Bodhisattva Member

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    these two are battling it out on a pretty consistent basis. I love the feel, upper fret access and weight of the SG but man, that Les Paul tone is a whole different animal. I got the SG first, fell in love. Got the Les Paul later. First night A/Bing them i really couldn't tell a huge difference between the two tone-wise , but after just a bit, i decided that for me, the LP is a head and shoulders better sounding. One of them has to go (i don't know why, just a deal i made with myself) and i think it's going to have to be the SG. Love the Custombuckers in both guitars, but the LP neck pickup is just a tad bit more interesting to me.

    To be fair, they are both incredible and are classics for a reason. I don't think you can go wrong with either one. I have learned more songs since buying these two guitars than in my previous ... 30 some years of trying to make another brand fit my style.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2019
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