Gibson Sound differences.

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by elio55, Mar 4, 2008.

  1. elio55

    elio55 Member

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    Feb 15, 2008
    Hi everyone,


    I would like your help please. After years with a PRS custom 22 i decided that its time to buy my dream guitar, which is a les paul. I am between the 57 goldtop-darkback, the 58 plaintop and the custom in ebony. My problem is that i am not sure what are the sonic differences between these 3 guitars.

    From what i know the standard is mellower and more muddy while the custom is quite bright, (for a lester that is). Is that true?

    From your experience which kind of music each guitar nails perfectly? Again from what i ve heard through the years the standard is more suitable for blues up until southern and classic rock while the custom starts from there up till metal. Is that right?

    What are the differences between the custom 57 2PU VOS and the custom? Is that true that the custom features a weight relieved body? I didnt knew that untill i stumbled to this site

    http://www.guitarsale.com/.

    The custom gibson says that it has a weight relieved body....


    I want to nail down skynyrd, govt mule, beano, cream, zep, whitesnake and early leppard...... Which is the proper lester???? Sadly my custom 22, cannot nail some of these stuff and thats why i want to buy a lester.


    Please check this because i love the guy's sound. Is that a simple custom or a 57 VOS?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHwFIUbJkOo


    Thanks for your help and answers in advance.....help a lost soul to find its sonic path towards nirvana.....:D


    Thanks a lot


    Elio
     
  2. MikeB_18

    MikeB_18 Member

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    Dover, Delaware
    The '57 gold top and '58 burst are the same guitar in a different color. Literally everything is the same spec-wise. These are vintage sounding instruments with somewhat lower output Burstbucker 1/2 PAF clone pickups.

    There are two styles of humbuckered Customs, the '57's and the 68/"regular production" Custom. The '57 are all mahogany while the '68 and standard production Custom both have maple caps. The '57 and '68 have solid backs while the regular Custom is weight relieved. The pickups in the '57 are burstbucker 1/2's, which is the same as the gold top and '58. As far as I know the '68 uses '57 classics which are fatter and smoother than Burstbuckers and the regular Custom uses the 490R/498T combo which are hotter and a bit more harsh in my opinion.

    My guess is if you're into the PRS Custom 22, the regular production Custom is going to be closest to that in terms of tone but of course they won't be the same. If you're looking for something completely different go for one of the '57 RI's or the '58.
     
  3. BadAssBill

    BadAssBill southofnash.com Silver Supporting Member

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    To add to MikeB....the R7 & R8 are smoother...and do the more classic rock thing. The Customs have more bite and are more aggresive. I love the sound they put out. One of the best guitars I've ever owned was a white custom...the thing was just sick.

    To nail the stuff you're looking for you're probably better off with the Historic. It will really just come down to finding the one with the most mojo for you.
     
  4. rastus

    rastus Member

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    Location:
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    I have several Lesters, but will stick to the ones you are talking about here. I have a 93 Historic 57, a flametop 68 CS, both Customs, and a 58 figured top reissue, and just sold my 57 goldtop/natural back historic to a pal.

    The 57 Custom Historic is all mahogany, it has 57 classics (3) and is big smooth and buttery sounding. It excells for blues and pop stuff, but also has some very good jangle tones when clean. Distorted it just really gets into really round and ultra-fat territory (think "American Woman" guitar solo) A great axe for sure, use it quite a bit, but honestly, it sounds quite different from any maple capped Les that I have.

    The 68 Flametop Custom reissue is quite bright and really shines for hard rock. It just seethes and screams-it's also loaded with 57's but the lead one is a 57 Classic Plus. This guitar is a total Flamethrower, the only guitar I own that gets into the metal zone better is an LA Custom Shop BC Rich Warlock from the mid-80's. The only downside to the 68 is that it just won't do classic rock tones or blues very convincingly. As good as both these Customs are, neither is as versatile as a 70 Custom I have (my main LP), the 70 can just about do anything no matter what you are trying to get out of it.

    For Classic Rock (Page, Clapton, Taylor, Kossoff, etc) the 57 and 58 were definately the ticket. The guitars were so much alike that I sold the 57 to my best friend, kept the 58. I did not care for the BB pickups at all, the 57 had a set of early 70's t-tops in it (my buddy wanted the BBs back in so I swapped em back in for him) the 58 has a set of Tom Holmes PAFs in it. If you are going for classic rock tones that really sound authentic, I think the 57 or 58 Historic Standard is the way to go. If you want a little more aggression, I believe a regular ol' Custom may be the ticket.

    All this being said, Most everything I do with a LP these days gets done with either my 72 Goldtop with p90s and a Bigsby, or my Historic 54 Goldtop, but the project I'm involved with mostly lends itself to the rootsier more open sounding p90 guitars.

    When I need to get into late 60's-early70's hard rock and heavy blooze tones-the 58 Historic will get the nod most of the time, but the 70 Custom gets in there too. I prefer the 58 for authentic Beano/Zep, etc tones. But I prefer the 70 Custom for that more Glammy early 70's sound, more Mick Ralphs/Ronson/etc. For Stonesy, earthy early Kieth tones, the 57 Historic Custom really gets the job done. For late 70's Arena rock tones, only the 68 can get it done 100%. For roots rock/country stuff The p90 guitars get it done. For loud aggressive G&R/ Velvet Revolver/Buckcherry type stuff, I don't use any of these, I rely on either a 93 Classic Prem+ or a 73 Deluxe (routed) both loaded with early 80's Duncans- Custom Distortions at the bridge and Seymourizer IIs at the neck.

    So there you have it, my tale of Les Paul confusion and vice.
     
  5. elio55

    elio55 Member

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    Thank you guys for the answers!!!!!!!!!:AOK
     

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