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elliot110

Gibson ES 335 or Les Paul 1958?

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Get both! which one you get first is of little consequence IMO. If you are talking Custom shop ES-335 and LP R-8's, you wont be disappointed with either. They are both incredible and both very versatile. It took me many years to get both of them but finally did it.

 

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Pardon the file photo on the R-8 but mine is exactly like this one.

 

Note how the Custom Shop 335 ('59-alike of some sort, given the long pickguard) essentially has a plain top (though it should be somewhat different from a plaintop standard 335 internally). The original '59s are the most desirable of all 335s among collectors, because they sound great. They are not usually reputed for their highly figured tops.

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Note how the Custom Shop 335 ('59-alike of some sort, given the long pickguard) essentially has a plain top (though it should be somewhat different from a plaintop standard 335 internally). The original '59s are the most desirable of all 335s among collectors, because they sound great. They are not usually reputed for their highly figured tops.

 

Yes the '59 is a lovely guitar too but is over my budget for a 335 at the moment.

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Wow they both look beautiful guitars. Is that a '59 335 or a Historic? Looks like it or similar. Thanks for the advice, although I would love to own both I can only pick one for now so still deciding on which one first haha. Its not easy but am leaning more towards the 335 at the moment as I have wanted it for a very long time, more than a Les Paul '58 even.

 

Why yes it is. A Gibson 1959 Custom Historic Dot Reissue from the Nashville Custom Shop. Quite a mouthful. It is a great guitar and I love it. I too lusted after an ES-335 for many years. And like you I always wanted a nice R8. Since a already had a LP (a very uninspiring LP Traditional), I ended up getting the 335 from Wildwood first. I later sold the LP Traditional and a Harley to fund the R8.

 

But I have to tell you, after having the R8 now for six months or so, I find myself gravitating to it most of the time. For straight up Jazz, the 335 can’t be beaten. The resonating clean sustaining tone is legendary. But I can almost get the same out of my R8. And though the 335 is certainly no slouch when it come to genres like Funk, Blues, and Rock, I prefer the R8. For the last several days, I have been working on an advanced Jazz course by Steve Krenz and it has been with the 335 all the way.

 

Another reason why the R8 gets a little more play time is the fact that the neck is beefier and I have been able to get just a slightly better setup on mine.

 

So, what did you do Elliot?

 

Cheers,

Woolly

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Why yes it is. A Gibson 1959 Custom Historic Dot Reissue from the Nashville Custom Shop. Quite a mouthful. It is a great guitar and I love it. I too lusted after an ES-335 for many years. And like you I always wanted a nice R8. Since a already had a LP (a very uninspiring LP Traditional), I ended up getting the 335 from Wildwood first. I later sold the LP Traditional and a Harley to fund the R8.

 

But I have to tell you, after having the R8 now for six months or so, I find myself gravitating to it most of the time. For straight up Jazz, the 335 can’t be beaten. The resonating clean sustaining tone is legendary. But I can almost get the same out of my R8. And though the 335 is certainly no slouch when it come to genres like Funk, Blues, and Rock, I prefer the R8. For the last several days, I have been working on an advanced Jazz course by Steve Krenz and it has been with the 335 all the way.

 

Another reason why the R8 gets a little more play time is the fact that the neck is beefier and I have been able to get just a slightly better setup on mine.

 

So, what did you do Elliot?

 

Cheers,

Woolly

 

Oh really thats interesting, what kind of advanced stuff are you doing? I'm at uni studying Music Production and Media, in my final year now.

 

Haven't bought either guitar yet as am saving up, I was also interested in the Gibson 1959 Historic Dot 335 too, however it is very expensive and when I was reading up on both that and a normal ES-335 most of the spec appeared the same. What makes the 1959 Historic nearly £1000 more, is it because its modelled after a traditional '59?

As I have not played the '59 yet from your experience is the tone vastly different to a standard ES-335 dot, and Is the the '59 worth the huge difference in cost?

 

In your opinion for straight rock tone which would you advise, I listen to a wide variety of different bands such as Foo Fighters, Green Day, The Killers, Kings of Leon, Jet etc

 

Thanks for your advice,

 

Best wishes

Elliot

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Oh really thats interesting, what kind of advanced stuff are you doing? I'm at uni studying Music Production and Media, in my final year now.

 

Haven't bought either guitar yet as am saving up, I was also interested in the Gibson 1959 Historic Dot 335 too, however it is very expensive and when I was reading up on both that and a normal ES-335 most of the spec appeared the same. What makes the 1959 Historic nearly £1000 more, is it because its modelled after a traditional '59?

As I have not played the '59 yet from your experience is the tone vastly different to a standard ES-335 dot, and Is the the '59 worth the huge difference in cost?

 

In your opinion for straight rock tone which would you advise, I listen to a wide variety of different bands such as Foo Fighters, Green Day, The Killers, Kings of Leon, Jet etc

 

Thanks for your advice,

S

Best wishes

Elliot

For straight up rock I would choose the Les Paul. A '57, '58, or '59. The R8 was my choice due to the chunky neck, '57 Humbuckers, and plain top. They all work great for rock, blues, and even jazz with the proper amp. Hopefully you can go somewhere and play them all. Also try the ES-335 and a '56 LP with P-90's. in the end, of course, you will have to choose what sounds best and suits your style of music.

 

My music tastes are much different than you listed above. I am into Southern Rock, Rockabilly, Delta Blues, and real Country. So I may not be the best person to ask.

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For straight up rock I would choose the Les Paul. A '57, '58, or '59. The R8 was my choice due to the chunky neck, '57 Humbuckers, and plain top. They all work great for rock, blues, and even jazz with the proper amp. Hopefully you can go somewhere and play them all. Also try the ES-335 and a '56 LP with P-90's. in the end, of course, you will have to choose what sounds best and suits your style of music.

 

My music tastes are much different than you listed above. I am into Southern Rock, Rockabilly, Delta Blues, and real Country. So I may not be the best person to ask.

 

Thanks again for your help, I will bear these things in mind before I finally decide which one to go for.

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I know that this is an older thread but I'll chime in, anyway.

 

I've owned 3 ES-335s, two Les Pauls, a couple of Les Paul Specials/Junior types, a couple of SGs plus a few of the pointy models (Firebird, Explorer, Vs) and you might want to take a real good look at the Lucille.

 

You'll get the feel of a Les Paul Custom ( or Firebird VII, 2007 GOTW Explorer, etc.) in the shape of a 335.

 

The guitar will play any genre, don't let the BB King thing fool you. Plug it into a Marshall stack and it will prove to be a pleasant surprise (in a very loud way)!

 

Another added bonus is they weren't played by Eric Clapton or any of the other rock guitar heroes so used prices aren't through the roof.

 

Just a thought.

 

I think every guitar player should have a Les Paul but if I had to choose, I'd take a 335 every time.

 

 

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I'm in downsize mode right now, and I have recently gotten rid of my only LP (a studio), an American Standard Strat, and a Gretsch G6120. I much prefer my ES-335 to all of them, and as someone else mentioned earlier, I can cover the LP sound with either the ES-335 or my Carvin SH550, though both of those are set up to get a woodier sound with a little more punch. The '57 classics in the 335 are some of Gibson's best pickups, but I am seriously considering replacing them with Lindey Fralin P-92s.

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I know that this is an older thread but I'll chime in, anyway.

 

I've owned 3 ES-335s, two Les Pauls, a couple of Les Paul Specials/Junior types, a couple of SGs plus a few of the pointy models (Firebird, Explorer, Vs) and you might want to take a real good look at the Lucille.

 

You'll get the feel of a Les Paul Custom ( or Firebird VII, 2007 GOTW Explorer, etc.) in the shape of a 335.

 

The guitar will play any genre, don't let the BB King thing fool you. Plug it into a Marshall stack and it will prove to be a pleasant surprise (in a very loud way)!

 

Another added bonus is they weren't played by Eric Clapton or any of the other rock guitar heroes so used prices aren't through the roof.

 

Just a thought.

 

I think every guitar player should have a Les Paul but if I had to choose, I'd take a 335 every time.

 

Ok thanks for your help will take a look.

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I'm in downsize mode right now, and I have recently gotten rid of my only LP (a studio), an American Standard Strat, and a Gretsch G6120. I much prefer my ES-335 to all of them, and as someone else mentioned earlier, I can cover the LP sound with either the ES-335 or my Carvin SH550, though both of those are set up to get a woodier sound with a little more punch. The '57 classics in the 335 are some of Gibson's best pickups, but I am seriously considering replacing them with Lindey Fralin P-92s.

 

What made you prefer the 335 over all those guitars you sold? Thanks for the advice, haven't heard of Lindey Fralin.

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Ok thanks for your help will take a look.

I know you started this thread in Sept, but out of curiosity , are you any closer to a decision? I have a LP Traditional and a 335 Dot . The 335 is way more versatile and gets more of my time. I just feel I can cover more material with mine without dislocating my shoulder while still play at the 20th fret. Both are great guitars though.

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I know you started this thread in Sept, but out of curiosity , are you any closer to a decision? I have a LP Traditional and a 335 Dot . The 335 is way more versatile and gets more of my time. I just feel I can cover more material with mine without dislocating my shoulder while still play at the 20th fret. Both are great guitars though.

 

Hi, out of the to guitars I prefer the 335 for playability and overall sound. Haven't bought it yet though, hopefully will get one soon. When I have will do a post for you all.

 

I find it interesting how nearly everyone seems to say how much more versatile it is than a Les Paul.

As you said both a great but vastly different from each other and unique in their own way.

 

In your opinion is it worth spending the extra for figured top or not? As from what i have read from others it makes no difference to the tone.

 

Thanks

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Hi, out of the to guitars I prefer the 335 for playability and overall sound. Haven't bought it yet though, hopefully will get one soon. When I have will do a post for you all.

 

I find it interesting how nearly everyone seems to say how much more versatile it is than a Les Paul.

As you said both a great but vastly different from each other and unique in their own way.

 

In your opinion is it worth spending the extra for figured top or not? As from what i have read from others it makes no difference to the tone.

 

Thanks

Personal prederence really. I have had a cherry plain top and now a cherry figured. I like the figured , but if I had a choice of guitars with all of them playing and sounding equal, I would probably choose a Vintage Sunburst plain top. The figured ones dont sell for any more than the plain tops. JMO.

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Personal prederence really. I have had a cherry plain top and now a cherry figured. I like the figured , but if I had a choice of guitars with all of them playing and sounding equal, I would probably choose a Vintage Sunburst plain top. The figured ones dont sell for any more than the plain tops. JMO.

 

Oh really thats surprising they don't sell for more than the plain tops. Vintage sunburst is nice too, I like the cherry plain top, the same as the one you have.

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What made you prefer the 335 over all those guitars you sold? Thanks for the advice, haven't heard of Lindey Fralin.

 

I've never really been able to bond with my Strat, even though I modified it heavily. I bought it new in 1999, and the neck was too thick, like the business end of a baseball bat. I also prefer the warmth of humbuckers, but I bought it for its distinctive sound, a sound which I finally felt was not for me and the sound I wanted for the music I play. Plus, I hated the tremolo bar.

 

I liked the Studio LP okay, but I much prefer the sound and the versatility of the 335, plus I had a friend who wanted to trade me even, the LP for a 2005 American Standard Tele with a Dimarzio Tone Zone S humbucker in the bridge and a coil splitter switch between the volume and tone knobs. It has a rosewood neck. I much prefer a Tele to a Strat for the sound, plus I love the Tele neck. IMO, I got the better deal in that trade. He probably still feels like he was on the better end.

 

I got rid of the Gretsch because, even though I absolutely loved the sound of the Filtertron pickups and the neck, I absolutely hated the Bigsby (I'll never have another), and access to frets above the 17th was limited. Plus, I have a gigging friend who really wanted that guitar, and now he has it.

 

My ES-335 is my second favorite guitar. I love the neck, the sound, the versatility; and it is a solid guitar. My favorite guitar is my Carvin SH550. It is also a semi hollow that is between the 335 and a Gibson LP Florentine in size and shape. The '57 classic humbuckers can be a little muddy, as with all Gibson humbuckers. The SH550 is a perfect fit for me, and I absolutely love the neck. The stock S22 pickups are not at all muddy and tend to be a little less bassy and brighter than the '57 classics with higher output. Plus, the Carvin has a carved top, and when you order one, you can specify the build you want with a vast array of options. It is the best built guitar I have, and it was probably the best value of all the guitars I've owned. I paid 30% less for the Carvin than for the 335.

 

I can't tell you which guitar is right for you. My own tastes have changed as my playing and style has progressed.

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Oh really thats surprising they don't sell for more than the plain tops. Vintage sunburst is nice too, I like the cherry plain top, the same as the one you have.

Ha I meant to say the figured dont sell for more than the plain tops on the USED market. They sure are more when you buy them new.

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The fact is, since I've been lucky enough to have owned a Gibson LP and ES-335, my next guitar is likely to be a Carvin CS6. It is shaped like an LP, but the body is not as deep and the guitar is not as heavy. It'll have a tune-o-matic bridge with a string through body, mahogany body and spalted maple top with clear finish, 5-piece mahogany neck with two maple strips, ebony fretboard with block abalone inlays, medium-jumbo stainless steel frets, stock C22 pickups, 14 inch fretboard radius, matching spalted maple headstock with abalone Carvin logo and Carvin locking tuners- all for right at $2000. Four to six week delivery, and 30 day return policy, no questions asked.

 

I'm not gonna blow smoke and tell you that a Carvin is anything like Gibson, but for my money, I'd rather have a Carvin.

 

cs6m-sm-sst-96647.jpg

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The fact is, since I've been lucky enough to have owned a Gibson LP and ES-335, my next guitar is likely to be a Carvin CS6. It is shaped like an LP, but the body is not as deep and the guitar is not as heavy. It'll have a tune-o-matic bridge with a string through body, mahogany body and spalted maple top with clear finish, 5-piece mahogany neck with two maple strips, ebony fretboard with block abalone inlays, medium-jumbo stainless steel frets, stock C22 pickups, 14 inch fretboard radius, matching spalted maple headstock with abalone Carvin logo and Carvin locking tuners- all for right at $2000. Four to six week delivery, and 30 day return policy, no questions asked.

 

I'm not gonna blow smoke and tell you that a Carvin is anything like Gibson, but for my money, I'd rather have a Carvin.

 

cs6m-sm-sst-96647.jpg

 

Sounds great looks nice too. Why would you choose the Carvin over the Gibson?

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Sounds great looks nice too. Why would you choose the Carvin over the Gibson?

 

Mainly because I prefer the neck, the fit, the looks, and the sound. If you go to the Carvin website, you can actually build the guitar that you want from the many options available. There are many desirable options that are stock. The build quality is excellent, and because Carvin sells direct, pricing is much better, and they are American made (San Diego, CA).

 

Gibson wrote the history books. Carvins are not Gibsons. In fact, they are probably closer to high end PRSs for half the price. While Carvin uses body designs that are very similar to Fenders and Gibsons, they are very different in the details. The problem with selling direct is you can't hear and play the instrument you're looking to buy. If you are interested, check out their website, visit their forums, watch/listen to youtubes, read reviews.

 

If you want a Gibson for the name, go for it. If you want the muddy sound of a Gibson go for it. If you want the history and the resale of a Gibson, go for it. I must say, I do love my ES-335. I love my SH550 more. I do not have a picture that does justice to its beauty.

 

Carvin1_zpsbc79119f.jpg

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Mainly because I prefer the neck, the fit, the looks, and the sound. If you go to the Carvin website, you can actually build the guitar that you want from the many options available. There are many desirable options that are stock. The build quality is excellent, and because Carvin sells direct, pricing is much better, and they are American made (San Diego, CA).

 

Gibson wrote the history books. Carvins are not Gibsons. In fact, they are probably closer to high end PRSs for half the price. While Carvin uses body designs that are very similar to Fenders and Gibsons, they are very different in the details. The problem with selling direct is you can't hear and play the instrument you're looking to buy. If you are interested, check out their website, visit their forums, watch/listen to youtubes, read reviews.

 

If you want a Gibson for the name, go for it. If you want the muddy sound of a Gibson go for it. If you want the history and the resale of a Gibson, go for it. I must say, I do love my ES-335. I love my SH550 more. I do not have a picture that does justice to its beauty.

 

Carvin1_zpsbc79119f.jpg

 

Thats fine, thanks for telling me about this, had a look, nice looking guitars but that is risky though if you can't play it. What are you supposed to do if you don't like it?

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Send it back and get your money back, no questions asked. If it has no flaws, it will be put into their stock and resold. If it has flaws, it will be repaired and put into stock or destroyed.

 

I'm thinking you need to go ahead and buy a Gibson. My recommendation would be the ES-335, but just remember, any guitar can play any genre. It really boils down to the sound you want (and compared to a Strat, the 335 and LP are not THAT different), the neck, the fit, the feel, the looks, and the vibe that works for YOU. If you can't get excited about the choice you make, eventually you will lose the love. At that point, it just becomes another horse in the stable or trophy in the case.

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Send it back and get your money back, no questions asked. If it has no flaws, it will be put into their stock and resold. If it has flaws, it will be repaired and put into stock or destroyed.

 

I'm thinking you need to go ahead and buy a Gibson. My recommendation would be the ES-335, but just remember, any guitar can play any genre. It really boils down to the sound you want (and compared to a Strat, the 335 and LP are not THAT different), the neck, the fit, the feel, the looks, and the vibe that works for YOU. If you can't get excited about the choice you make, eventually you will lose the love. At that point, it just becomes another horse in the stable or trophy in the case.

 

That is quite a hassle though, thanks for the advice yes you can play several genres of music with most guitars but not all, (a 335 can't do metal) however some like an ESP KH2 I own is only suitable really for solely metal a no other genre of music as thats the type of instrument it is. Also for example, I could play a Foo Fighters track on a Fender Stratocaster but it won't sound like them as aside from the player it will still sound a Strat as they use a Fender Telecaster Deluxe and Gibson 335's. I depends on the guitar. You wouldn't see Slash playing Gun's N Roses songs on a Fender Strat as its the wrong guitar for that type of music. I know one guitar doesn't suit all and for the price of the Gibson 335 or any Gibson I could buy three guitars for the same total amount or a bit less with still some money remaining, so am not rushing to make a purchase on a Gibson 335 or any Gibson for that matter, as no one guitar can do all the sounds I am looking for.

 

Personally in my opinion a Strat, Gibson Les Paul and Gibson ES 335 are all vastly different in sound and neither of them are comparable to one another, they are all unique iconic instruments and excel at their own different genres of music.

 

I will hopefully be going out guitar shopping next week, and will be trying out several different guitars both Gibson and Fender as the two brands have the guitars I am interested in. I may come away with 3 guitars, I may come away with just one I don't know until I have tried them all which to go for. If it takes me hours trying them all and I come away with a couple then they are the most suited instruments for my music tastes, same for one.

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If you can get an LP to sound like The Edge's Strat, it doesn't matter what guitar you buy. Image is everything.

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If you can get an LP to sound like The Edge's Strat, it doesn't matter what guitar you buy. Image is everything.

 

Thats is unlikely, and image is not everything, a guitar that sounds good is more important than looks.

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