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Next Epiphone Semi Hollow A Campanion for my HSS Strat

#1 User is offline   hollowdan 

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 05:04 PM

I want a new guitar (used is the form I choose for the sake of the most quality for the dollar). I am capping my search at $950, somewhat arbitrarily.

I have gone to several guitar marts of the various box store variety, but I prefer to find a good deal online with returnable arrangements.

I play blues through a Peavey Classic 30 (minty '96 I picked up with the gray tweed). I really love my Lonestar MIM Deluxe HSS strat, but I want a companion guitar to get me closer to the BB, T-Bone, Albert King, Buddy Guy and Lightening Hopkins sound I love.

I am seriously watching: ES-335 Pro, Sheraton II, Dot Royal with Bigsby, and those cool Joe Pass models.

What would you recommend? You guys have always been such a big help and I have appreciated the advice I have received over the years. Thanks for your valuable time and input. Dan
Hollowdan
Takamine EF441c
Guild D55(1976)
National Resophonic M-2
Takamine F400 (1976 - D28-12 Lawsuit Martin Replica)
Fender Deluxe Lone Star Stratocaster

Mandolins:
Gibson A5G '96 signed by B Weber
Gibson A (1909)
J Bovier F5T Plus (Custom Shop)

Amplifiers:
Peavey Classic 30
Crate VC20
Fender G Dec Jr
Peavey Solo
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#2 User is offline   JimB1 

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 05:39 AM

hollowdan said:

1494025479[/url]' post='1853498']
I want a new guitar (used is the form I choose for the sake of the most quality for the dollar). I am capping my search at $950, somewhat arbitrarily.

I have gone to several guitar marts of the various box store variety, but I prefer to find a good deal online with returnable arrangements.

I play blues through a Peavey Classic 30 (minty '96 I picked up with the gray tweed). I really love my Lonestar MIM Deluxe HSS strat, but I want a companion guitar to get me closer to the BB, T-Bone, Albert King, Buddy Guy and Lightening Hopkins sound I love.

I am seriously watching: ES-335 Pro, Sheraton II, Dot Royal with Bigsby, and those cool Joe Pass models.

What would you recommend? You guys have always been such a big help and I have appreciated the advice I have received over the years. Thanks for your valuable time and input. Dan


Hi Dan,I am sort of in the same boat right now on looking for a nice hollowbody. Here's how I am narrowing it down, might help you narrow is down.
1: Bigsby or not? For me I don't need a Bigsby and it's just something I wouldn't use the way I play so unless the deal is awesome, I am not looking at ones with a Bigsby or tremolo. You may decide you need one so either way this question narrows the field.2: body size - are you comfortable with a 335 size or is a 339 or even a Es Les Paul since that's an option now. I like the 335 size but I play sitting a lot so the Les Paul size is not as comfortable. 339 size and wildcat size are good for me too. 3: sound - it sounds like you have this narrowed down to a specific blues/early rock sound. P90s or humbuckers? To me humbuckers are the way to go but p90s have a raw, edgy sound that is great for some things. 4: bling - do you like fancy appointments or simple ones? The dot is a classic for a reason but so is the Casino. I like bound necks but inlays I can go either way on. I don't like a lot of fancy gold appointments or flowery inlays, stuff like that but some folks go wild for that stuff so decide where you fit in the range of bling.5: how does it feel - this pretty much tops most everything except maybe sound to me. If it checks off all the other boxes but it hurts to play it for 20 minutes I won't buy it no matter how good it sounds. Fortunately I am pretty neck agnostic and a good setup fixes a lot.
Personally I am thinking about a Dot or one of the 335 variants maybe even a Lucille model, but your answers to the questions might lead you to a wildcat or a 339. Hope my breakdown helps some.. good luck with the search.-Jim
  • 2015 Gibson J-45
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#3 User is offline   hollowdan 

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 06:44 AM

View PostJimB1, on 06 May 2017 - 05:39 AM, said:

Hi Dan,I am sort of in the same boat right now on looking for a nice hollowbody. Here's how I am narrowing it down, might help you
1: Bigsby or not? For me I don't need a Bigsby and it's just something I wouldn't use the way I play so unless the deal is awesome, I am not looking at ones with a Bigsby or tremolo. You may decide you need one so either way this question narrows the field.2: body size - are you comfortable with a 335 size or is a 339 or a year even a Es Les Paul since that's an option now. I like the 335 size but I play sitting a lot so the Les Paul size is not as comfortable. 339 size and wildcat size are good for me too. 3: sound - it sounds like you have this narrowed down to a specific blues/early rock sound. P90s or humbuckers? To me humbuckers are the way to go but p90s have a raw, edgy sound that is great for some things. 4: bling - do you like fancy appointments or simple ones? The dot is a classic for a reason but so is the Casino. I like bound necks but inlays I can go either way on. I don't like a lot of fancy gold appointments or flowery inlays, stuff like that but some folks go wild for that stuff so decide where you fit in the range of bling.5: how does it feel - this pretty much tops most everything except maybe sound to me. If it checks off all the other boxes but it hurts to play it for 20 minutes I won't buy it no matter how good it sounds. Fortunately I am pretty neck agnostic and a good setup fixes a lot.
Personally I am thinking about a Dot or one of the 335 variants maybe even a Lucille model, but your answers to the questions might lead you to a wildcat or a 339. Hope my breakdown helps some.. good luck with the search.-Jim


Hi Jim, This is a very good rubric for breaking it all down by categories. I am embarrassed to say that I have gone back and forth over many of these attributes you have done so well to list. I save all of the following in my watch list on Reverb: Amer Strats, Les Paul Studios, Dots, Sheratons, Emperors and Casinos. All are in my range and under. I wish you well in your search and we shall compare notes! :)
Hollowdan
Takamine EF441c
Guild D55(1976)
National Resophonic M-2
Takamine F400 (1976 - D28-12 Lawsuit Martin Replica)
Fender Deluxe Lone Star Stratocaster

Mandolins:
Gibson A5G '96 signed by B Weber
Gibson A (1909)
J Bovier F5T Plus (Custom Shop)

Amplifiers:
Peavey Classic 30
Crate VC20
Fender G Dec Jr
Peavey Solo
0

#4 User is offline   gnappi 

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 08:04 AM

View Posthollowdan, on 05 May 2017 - 05:04 PM, said:

I want a new guitar (used is the form I choose for the sake of the most quality for the dollar). I am capping my search at $950, somewhat arbitrarily.

I have gone to several guitar marts of the various box store variety, but I prefer to find a good deal online with returnable arrangements.

I play blues through a Peavey Classic 30 (minty '96 I picked up with the gray tweed). I really love my Lonestar MIM Deluxe HSS strat, but I want a companion guitar to get me closer to the BB, T-Bone, Albert King, Buddy Guy and Lightening Hopkins sound I love.

I am seriously watching: ES-335 Pro, Sheraton II, Dot Royal with Bigsby, and those cool Joe Pass models.

What would you recommend? You guys have always been such a big help and I have appreciated the advice I have received over the years. Thanks for your valuable time and input. Dan


After owning a Sheraton I couldn't imagine wanting the 335, The Sheraton is a ton more git for (used) nearly equal price. The new Joe Pass models just feel stiff and sound lifeless to me. The older ones are outstanding. Both have 5 piece necks and are finished perfectly. My two fave JP factories were Unsung (early 2000's), and Samick. But the Samick are more readily found.
Regards,

Gary
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#5 User is offline   charlie brown 

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 03:00 PM

I have a vintage 1966 Casino, and a 2004 AIUSA Sheraton! Both are excellent players and sound Great!
I have owned (and, may again) the Riviera P-93! That might be something you should (at least) check
out, as it has the center-block, like the 335 Pro, but has the growl, and twang, of P-90's. It also has,
at certain settings, a "Gretsch" vibe, as well. Would do "blues," Rock, Country, and Jazz tones etc., very
well, IMHO.

Just a thought...

CB
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#6 User is offline   kidblast 

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 07:42 AM

I'd suggest the Sheraton Pro II. Fantastic axe, and pretty sweet on the eyes.
/Ray
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#7 User is offline   Little Jerry 

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 10:44 AM

View Postcharlie brown, on 06 May 2017 - 03:00 PM, said:

I have a vintage 1966 Casino, and a 2004 AIUSA Sheraton! Both are excellent players and sound Great!
I have owned (and, may again) the Riviera P-93! That might be something you should (at least) check
out, as it has the center-block, like the 335 Pro, but has the growl, and twang, of P-90's. It also has,
at certain settings, a "Gretsch" vibe, as well. Would do "blues," Rock, Country, and Jazz tones etc., very
well, IMHO.

Just a thought...

CB

+1 on the Epiphone Riviera Custom P93 (three P90 pups, semi-hollowbody, Bigsby)

You could probably pick one up new for about $550 or used for about $450. I tried a lot of guitars in this price range and landed on this one for its playability and tone. Mine pairs very well with my Peavey Classic 30. I thought the guitar sounded pretty good stock, but a couple of hundred dollars (less if you are handy) for a new nut and better electronics (pots, caps, wire, etc.) will vastly improve the tone and tuning and would keep you well within your budget. There are a couple of good video demos of the guitar out there.

Good luck on your search!
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#8 User is offline   hollowdan 

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 06:53 PM

Kidblast, Jerry and Charlie Brown, I admit with a red face, I decided on a 2001 Fender American Series (Standard) "Blackie" (just by color not the official Eric Clapton version). It was mint in the OHSC and had the maple fretboard to go with my Rosewood board Strat. All for $699 shipped. I am still in the hunt for an Epiphone, but will have to watch for a very nicely affordable Sheraton II, which are way under their true value and tone. I regret selling mine, as I do my former P93 and the Epi LP Custom. My MAS for mandolins had me in its grip for 5 years. Can't say I regret it though, considering the Gibson A5G 1996 mandolin I am enjoying! Thanks for the great suggestions on a new guitar!
Hollowdan
Takamine EF441c
Guild D55(1976)
National Resophonic M-2
Takamine F400 (1976 - D28-12 Lawsuit Martin Replica)
Fender Deluxe Lone Star Stratocaster

Mandolins:
Gibson A5G '96 signed by B Weber
Gibson A (1909)
J Bovier F5T Plus (Custom Shop)

Amplifiers:
Peavey Classic 30
Crate VC20
Fender G Dec Jr
Peavey Solo
0

#9 User is offline   kidblast 

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 04:18 AM

View Posthollowdan, on 08 May 2017 - 06:53 PM, said:

Kidblast, Jerry and Charlie Brown, I admit with a red face, I decided on a 2001 Fender American Series (Standard) "Blackie" (just by color not the official Eric Clapton version). It was mint in the OHSC and had the maple fretboard to go with my Rosewood board Strat. All for $699 shipped. I am still in the hunt for an Epiphone, but will have to watch for a very nicely affordable Sheraton II, which are way under their true value and tone. I regret selling mine, as I do my former P93 and the Epi LP Custom. My MAS for mandolins had me in its grip for 5 years. Can't say I regret it though, considering the Gibson A5G 1996 mandolin I am enjoying! Thanks for the great suggestions on a new guitar!



Dan some guys are just Strat players, it's all what speaks to you. Enjoy the playing!!! I have 2, and I like them a whole lot. I tend to gravitate however towards les pauls..


I've been waiting for a Mandolin (a Washburn M3E I don't know crap about em but it looks like a pretty good way to start) has been back ordered for a while. I may hit ya up with some start up questions once I finally get my hands on it. I know they are a bit different and it will take a bit of time to get my head around that neck. but I can't wait to be on that journey, I've always wanted a mando.. ..waiting patiently...
/Ray
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#10 User is offline   hollowdan 

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 07:32 PM

Hi Kidblast, I appreciate your confidence in my choice of the American Strat. Les Pauls are a great instrument and I can see how you find them enjoyable and effective in expressing your musical style. Great choice in the Washburn mandolin. I will look forward to discussions. You will learn much more quickly because of your experience and skill on a guitar. It is a lot of pleasure to learn a different fingerboard and all the new chord shapes. The mandolin gets a hold of you! Please look into the Mandolin Cafe. I am LFLNGPICKER if you want to look me up. I have gained so much from that forum which is as beneficial as the Epiphone Lounge. Take care! :)
Hollowdan
Takamine EF441c
Guild D55(1976)
National Resophonic M-2
Takamine F400 (1976 - D28-12 Lawsuit Martin Replica)
Fender Deluxe Lone Star Stratocaster

Mandolins:
Gibson A5G '96 signed by B Weber
Gibson A (1909)
J Bovier F5T Plus (Custom Shop)

Amplifiers:
Peavey Classic 30
Crate VC20
Fender G Dec Jr
Peavey Solo
0

#11 User is offline   charlie brown 

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Posted 09 May 2017 - 10:13 PM

Nothing, at all, wrong, with a good Strat!! [thumbup] Enjoy!! [biggrin]

CB
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#12 User is offline   kidblast 

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Posted 10 May 2017 - 04:27 AM

thanks for the tips Dan! I am still waiting for the backorder, but hopefully in a few weeks... I'll look you up in the mando cafe
/Ray
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#13 User is offline   Mysterblues 

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 09:53 PM

Sheraton II with a few upgrades can be amazing! How do I know? 😎 My number 1 axe for over 10 years.
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#14 User is offline   Mysterblues 

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 09:54 PM

And with s coil tap I also get very Fender like single coil tones!
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