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2007 & 2008 Standards are chambered.

Around mid year 2008 Standards got the new features, including long neck tenon.

Standards before 2007 had 9 weight-relief holes and short neck tenon.

The Traditional is the same as the pre-2007 Standard...just different pickups.

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Having just selected a Traditional over a Standard, I'd point out that the Traditional is a few dollars cheaper at the moment. Think of it this way, they made so many changes to the specifications of the Standard in 2008 that they knew there would be reactionaries like us who didn't think there was anything wrong with the old way of making them, so for us there's the Traditional. Here are a few differences Trad/Std:

 

Traditionals have weight relief (nine holes...) like they've been using since about 1983 (except for Historics, of course) and they are heavy guitars / Standards are chambered like they've been doing to Standards since mid 2006 or 2007 (scary if you ask me, the guitars are too light to feel like a Les Paul IMHO, besides how can they say it's strategically located and then say that it creates a different resonance and tone? OK enough ranting, make up your own mind on that one)

 

"Fifties" rounded neck profile / Asymmetrical neck profile (Standards used to be available in 50s or 60s slim taper). The neck profile alone can be a deal breaker - make sure you can get used to it. It took me a few guitars to get there (I grew up on a Hagstrom with a paper-thin neck, to a few Strats with thinn-ish necks, to a Tele with a rounder neck, and now the Traditional with a nice round heft - I'm still not ready for a Historic with the baseball bat neck size...).

 

'57 Classic and '57 Classic Plus pickups (alnico II, even coil windings like they thought they were making with the PAF's / Burstbucker "Pro" (Alnico V) pickups (uneven coil windings for a grittier sound presuming that they had no quality control in the fifties and the pickup bobbins were all unmatched). You might predict that the Pros are hotter for today's metal types, or that they're meant to compensate for the tone difference of a hollow body, but you need to hear it for yourself.

 

Tone Pros "Kluson" vintage style tuners with bolt bushings and butterscotch keystone knobs / Grover locking tuners with metal knobs. Both of these are an upgrade from prior models of Standards.

 

Chrome jack plate (a common upgrade) / plastic jack plate (like they've always had, subject to breaking but it's nice to have a weakest link in the chain so the screws don't pull out of the wood or do any other damage...)

 

Gibson pots on a metal mounting plate / Bourns pots on a printed circuit board.

 

Standard jack / Neutric locking jack (you can't see under there to begin with, and you have to fumble for a latch?)

 

Nashville tune-o-matic bridge and regular stop tailpiece (rumored to be made by Ping and no longer by Schaller in Germany) / Tone Pros locking bridge and tailpiece (with allen setscrews holding them on, rumored to be made by Gotoh). By now you can, unfortunately, expect that either model is going to have pre-notched saddles instead of the custom string spacing that we used to see from Gibson.

 

The traditionals are not specified as such, but you are very very likely to get a one-piece mahogany back with a nice grain to it on a Traditional. The Standards, on the other hand, will have a two, or even three, piece back.

 

Traditionals have "speed" barrel-shaped knobs to evoke, I kid you not, the vintage vibe of the early eighties (ouch) / Standards have the top-hat or bell shaped knobs.

 

Traditionals have the little dinky strap pins so, please, put Schaller strap locks on there. The Standards already have Dunop strap lock studs on them.

 

Traditionals have a short neck tenon like they've been using since early to mid 1969 / Standards (from 2008) have a new CNC large gourd-shaped tenon.

 

I left the trussrod cover with the white "Traditional" script undisturbed. Those who notice it probably appreciate what it means.

 

I'm just waiting for DaveInSpain to tell me it's time to change avatars. But here's a shot of mine:

 

IMG_3844.jpg

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The traditionals are not specified as such' date=' but you are very very likely to get a one-piece mahogany back with a nice grain to it on a Traditional. The Standards, on the other hand, will have a two, or even three, piece back.

 

[/quote']

 

Are you sure about that? Why would one have a solid back and the other a three-piece back?

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I believe the key words were "very likely" although not guaranteed. My Trad is a 2 piece, although very tightly matched and hard to detect without close inspection. My R8 is definitely one solid piece of light weight mahogany; 8 lbs. 6 0z. O:)

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The Traditional is what the Standard used to be for the last 50 years.

 

The "new" 2008 Standard is a bunch of gimmicks and baloney.

 

Bobv covered it pretty well.

Get the Traditional, and you'll have the "standard" by which all Les Pauls are judged.

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The Traditional is what the Standard used to be for the last 50 years.

 

The "new" 2008 Standard is a bunch of gimmicks and baloney.

 

Bobv covered it pretty well.

Get the Traditional' date=' and you'll have the "standard" by which all Les Pauls are judged.

 

[/quote']

 

Here here. I recently chose the Traditional after playing lots of 'em. I wanted to love the Standard because of the weight, but it just didnt do it for me. The real test was open chords. Tinny compared to the Traditional, it lacked the richness. And as for the gimmicks, just more stuff to break off or go wrong, particularly the locking input jack. How long would it take for that to break?

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Here here. I recently chose the Traditional after playing lots of 'em. I wanted to love the Standard because of the weight' date=' but it just didnt do it for me. The real test was open chords. Tinny compared to the Traditional, it lacked the richness. And as for the gimmicks, just more stuff to break off or go wrong, particularly the locking input jack. How long would it take for that to break?[/quote']

 

It's only going to break if you're dumb enough to try and yank out the cable without pressing the latch. I personally love my new Standard. I think what Gibson have done is thought of all the things that are annoying about a the old standards and tried to rectify them. I can understand people preferring the old standards because that's what they're used to. I played a Korean Tokai for years before I got mine and the difference is massive. I play mine through a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe and it sounds great.

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Here here. I recently chose the Traditional after playing lots of 'em. I wanted to love the Standard because of the weight' date=' but it just didnt do it for me. The real test was open chords. Tinny compared to the Traditional, it lacked the richness. And as for the gimmicks, just more stuff to break off or go wrong, particularly the locking input jack. How long would it take for that to break?[/quote']

 

It's only going to break if you're dumb enough to try and yank out the cable without pressing the latch. I personally love my new Standard. I think what Gibson have done is thought of all the things that are annoying about a the old standards and tried to rectify them. I can understand people preferring the old standards because that's what they're used to. I played a Korean Tokai for years before I got mine and the difference is massive. I play mine through a Fender Hot Rod Deluxe and it sounds great.

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I think what Gibson have done is thought of all the things that are annoying about a the old standards and tried to rectify them.

That's great.

Just don't call it a Standard.

 

I'm sure the guitar will continue to have broad appeal to everybody but the people who have been buying and playing Les Pauls for 50 years because they liked them enough to spend their hard-earned cash on them.

 

My sole complaint is the marketing baloney.

The could have called it anything but the Standard.

The Standard Plus' date=' or [i']LP New Technolgy[/i], or the We Stuck Everything We Could Think Of On the New Les Paul.

 

The Standard name has been on the Standard for decades, it's a mistake to dilute such powerful name recognition.

 

But considering they are now selling cheap *** Chinese acoustics for $100 with the Gibson name on the headstock....

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bobv said it all, really, but to be pedantic;

 

Traditionals have "speed" barrel-shaped knobs to evoke' date=' I kid you not, the vintage vibe of the early eighties (ouch) / Standards have the top-hat or bell shaped knobs.[/quote']

 

I think I'm correct in stating the 'speed' knobs were the standard (no pun intended) fitment on Gold-Tops from '52 until the 'hat-box' design came out, first appearing on LP's in the '57 catalogue. The 'speed' knobs were still fitted to other guitars - notably the arch-top instruments - even after this date.

 

I agree with Neo; the new 'Standard' should have been called something else ('Gibson Les Paul Almost Traditional'?)and the 'Traditional' should have been called the 'Standard'.

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Good point. The speed knobs were the first type, but they were a different height. The ones on the Traditional are a later style, and the ad copy in the Gibson site talks about a later era that I wasn't ready to consider "vintage." I prefer the feel of the barrel knobs since the larger diameter is easier to grab with your pinkey.

 

Jertum, thanks for asking. That's an Iced Tea finish although in most light it seems pretty dark. I imagine it like a darkburst that has faded a little. At the store they couldn't figure if it was Bourbon or Iced Tea, but Customer Service emailed me back with the color based on the serial number (besides it says "IT" under the neck pickup).

 

As for the one-piece back, it's been my experience when shopping over the past year since these things hit the shelves (there are two Guitar Centers and two Sam Ash stores in my area where I've seen and played the Traditional and the "new Coke" Standard). Almost all of the Traditionals I've seen have had a one piece back, as is the one I bought. If I had to guess, they may be selecting the boards with a priority for the Traditionals since they're made differently, or it's based on weight of the wood sample. There was a thread about the one-piece back and a few posters responded that theirs were one-piece also. So it's definitely not in their ad copy specs, but it's something you might find.

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Jertum' date=' thanks for asking. That's an Iced Tea finish although in most light it seems pretty dark. I imagine it like a darkburst that has faded a little. At the store they couldn't figure if it was Bourbon or Iced Tea, but Customer Service emailed me back with the color based on the serial number (besides it says "IT" under the neck pickup).[/quote']

 

Ah, mine's Iced Tea too. I think mine's a little bit lighter than that but I haven't had chance to photograph it outside yet. Looks great anyway!

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Good point. The speed knobs were the first type' date=' but they were a different height. The ones on the Traditional are a later style, and the ad copy in the Gibson site talks about a later era that I wasn't ready to consider "vintage."[/quote']

 

Thanks for the clarification, bobv. I learn something new every day here! Anyhow; I should have guessed something was up as I've never yet read a post where you seemed mis-informed...

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bobv said it all' date=' really, but to be pedantic;

 

 

 

I think I'm correct in stating the 'speed' knobs were the standard (no pun intended) fitment on Gold-Tops from '52 until the 'hat-box' design came out, first appearing on LP's in the '57 catalogue. The 'speed' knobs were still fitted to other guitars - notably the arch-top instruments - even after this date.

 

I agree with Neo; the new 'Standard' should have been called something else ('Gibson Les Paul [i']Almost[/i] Traditional'?)and the 'Traditional' should have been called the 'Standard'.

Gotta disagree here. The Standard name IMO refers to the guitar being the standard by which other companies guitars are graded. That doesnt mean the guitar isnt supposed to change. Traditional homever is completely the opposite. You can't change tradition. It is what it is (and was). No problem with the naming here. If you want an old Standard, buy an old Standard.
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Gotta disagree here. The Standard name IMO refers to the guitar being the standard by which other companies guitars are graded. That doesnt mean the guitar isnt supposed to change. Traditional homever is completely the opposite. You can't change tradition. It is what it is (and was). No problem with the naming here. If you want an old Standard' date=' buy an old Standard.[/quote']

 

What we call the Standard was, in fact, always known as the Les Paul 'regular' within Gibson to differentiate it from the Custom, Special and Junior instruments. In this respect it meant, literally, the regular; normal; neither-the-fancy-nor-the-cheap-Les Paul.

 

It wasn't officially called the Standard until much, much later.

 

If you wish to think of it as the standard by which all other guitars are judged then that's fine by me. It's a good yardstick by any standards!

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Like said earlier, there are many differences between the Standard and Traditional.

 

The Traditional and Standard feel and sound like a new Les Paul, which often means more 'upper middy' instead of 'lower middy'. There might be some Traditionals and Custom Shop (Historic) les pauls available that do sound warm, full and rich. However, most new les pauls are just too trebly, thin and woody, mostly because of the chambers, insane light weight and new (crap) wood. Old wood basically tends to sound fuller and warmer on a les paul.

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