I took the plunge. I was killing time at GC this afternoon, and the remainder of my tax return was burning a hole in my pocket, so I played a bunch of guitars. I spotted this Arctic White Les Paul Studio hanging behind the customer service counter, and asked the guy to get it down for me. I then proceeded to plug her into half a dozen or so amps. I liked what I heard, and I liked what I felt, so I bought it. It sounded far superior to the matte mahogany model I played, and much more so, to any of the Epiphone LP's. So.....I guess I have to eat a little crow here.....I've been known to pooh pooh Gibson guitars. I take it all back. This ebony fret boarded beauty is a real screamer, that when turned down, can sound pretty mellow too! These pickups are sizzlin' hot, whatever they are. The neck feels really nice, and the setup is pretty darned close to the way I like. The workmanship seems flawless. Frets are very well dressed and the finish is fantastic. I usually don't like gold hardware, but it seems to work on the white. A died in the wool Fender guy, and I have been for many years. But I think I may have figured out what all the fuss is about! I have seen the light. Here's a couple fo-toes: My pics don't do her justice. Even the cat loves it. I'll add more observations later, after I have more some playing time on her.