Entry-level Gibsons Are Excellent Guitars

Sparky6string

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
4,070
I have a 2005 ebony SG Special with 57 Classics (swapped in after removing the stockers) and a white 2007 Les Paul Studio. I am always stunned by the quality of these two guitars. It was easy to find an SG I liked- most of them felt and played similarly when I was shopping for one. All were very good. Filling the LP Studio spot however was not nearly as easy. I found some real beauties, but they were sorta dead and uninspiring. One day I walked in the GC though and my white one was on the rack. I tried it out and refused to put it down as I checked out the rest of the guitars there that day. In the Studio I have the stock 490r in the neck and replaced the 498t with a Seymour Duncan Antiquity. They are an odd combo and I intend to swap out the neck for something else.

What's up with your SG Specials and Les Paul Studios and whatever entry-level Gibbys you have?
 

NSDQRKR

Member
Messages
1,708
44B3E37F-9D69-4613-8B52-653706E73C83.jpeg

Love my Tribute. Changed the bridge to a 498. The neck and frets are flawless and its fun to play. I paid $950 new and its a lot of value.
 

k.platyops

Member
Messages
104
I have one of the lauded Les Paul Studios from the late 90's. White guitar with ebony fretboard. 490R 498T pups. Also has a TP-6 tailpiece with mini tuners. It is one of my top tier go to instruments! I bought it used, and it was already all beat up, but had good frets, and played really well. Sounds just great.

Something like this...
bkvsiihvqixkybhefcmy.jpg



I have other lower tier Gibsons that are solid as well. I like their lower cost models a lot, at least so far...
 

Baxter Stockman

Senior Member
Messages
1,049
No that can't be right. Gibsons are only good after the 3000 dollar mark, and I hear that if that Murphy fella works on the finish then they're even better.

But they actually are all terrible if other opinions are to be believed.

Are you sure they aren't PRS guitars you have?
 

Gallery

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
9,242
I have a Gibson Les Paul Studio that cost me about $1000 in 2001. It was a great guitar out of the box. I changed the pickups and hardware to better suit my needs and now it's one of my favorite guitars and holds up fine against my $3000+ guitars. There are plenty of good USA Gibsons out there. Best to try before you buy and don't let anyone tell you that you NEED to spend a fortune to get a good guitar. The margin of improvement between a $1000 and $3000 guitar or between a $2000 guitar and a $5000 guitar is pretty small. Just matters how much that small margin is worth to you. It definitely isn't going to make you sound or play any better, but you might enjoy it more. Or you might enjoy the $500 guitar the most because you won't need to worry about it all the time and wipe it down every time you touch it.
 

stilesg57

Member
Messages
1,189
I’ve only got one Standard model Gibson (an SG). The rest are all “lower” models like Studios and Tributes and Specials and the like.

Quality gits and screwups both come out of Gibson at seemingly similar rates all price levels for some reason. Fender at least seems to scale the duds so there are fewer and fewer as you work up the model/price hierarchy, but I haven’t seen that as obviously in effect with Gibson.

Case in point: the Standard SG is good but is probably the first one I’d move if I had to. last one would be either a ~’00 SG Special or a ‘97 Studio like this one (but wine red & gold)
I have one of the lauded Les Paul Studios from the late 90's. White guitar with ebony fretboard. 490R 498T pups. Also has a TP-6 tailpiece with mini tuners. It is one of my top tier go to instruments! I bought it used, and it was already all beat up, but had good frets, and played really well. Sounds just great.

Something like this...
bkvsiihvqixkybhefcmy.jpg
 

Steve Y.

Supporting Member
Messages
1,399
1998 SG Standard here. It’s a fine guitar. I added the Bigsby B5 (mounted via Vibramate) a couple years ago and that’s been a nice addition. This is a lifer guitar for me.

LSLPH4O.jpg


Edit: I’m now understanding that an SG Standard is not ‘entry level’ per se, but it’s also not nearly on the price point as the higher end SG Customs or Les Paul R# type guitars, so I figured it qualified for the discussion.
 
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ozraves

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,100
Low level Gibsons rock in my opinion. I’ve got an LP Tribute HP and a 2015 SG Special. The rest of my Gibsons are LP and SG Standards. Love them but if you forced me to sell them off the Standards would be first to go.
 

Baxter Stockman

Senior Member
Messages
1,049
In all seriousness, I love my 2002 Studio, decked out in the tacky gold-plate hardware. Traded a 2008 American Special Tele for it straight across. Best deal I've made.

SmartSelect_20220418-203724_Instagram.jpg

Shop wanted something like 850 for it a few years back. Paid 500 for the tele as a floor model. I'd say I came out on top for this one.

No binding, no truss rod condom, no fussing. Just 9ish pounds (uneducated guess, never weighed it) of some of the most solid LP I've played.

The cheapies can be good, just like the more expensive ones. Just gotta look for them, just like you do with the more expensive ones.
 

G Stone

Member
Messages
853
I have a 2005 ebony SG Special with 57 Classics (swapped in after removing the stockers) and a white 2007 Les Paul Studio. I am always stunned by the quality of these two guitars. It was easy to find an SG I liked- most of them felt and played similarly when I was shopping for one. All were very good. Filling the LP Studio spot however was not nearly as easy. I found some real beauties, but they were sorta dead and uninspiring. One day I walked in the GC though and my white one was on the rack. I tried it out and refused to put it down as I checked out the rest of the guitars there that day. In the Studio I have the stock 490r in the neck and replaced the 498t with a Seymour Duncan Antiquity. They are an odd combo and I intend to swap out the neck for something else.

What's up with your SG Specials and Les Paul Studios and whatever entry-level Gibbys you have?
Yeah, my sentiments too. I’ve had really good luck with entry level Gibbys. I bought a 2019 and a 2020 slab bodied Gibson Les Paul Special HH Tributes that I love. Inexpensive, lightweight, balanced, Plek’d frets and sound really close to a full thickness LP. Got a LP Special Tribute DC with P90s. And bought two Gibson Firebird Zeros that I changed the pickups on. All 5 of these are great sounding and playing guitars for bar band gigs and other sketchy clubs.

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seward

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,978
I've had a great time with the older Studios, and the newer Tributes. I really like my new Studio, actually thinking of getting another one. It really does seem to be put together a little better than the 3 or 4 that I bought between 2014 and 2018.
 




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