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2 SG G-400 questions: "standard" vs. '66, and buying online


neptune2000

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Hi all,

I've been looking at the Epi SG G-400 for a while now. When I think of SGs I think of the "full" pickguard, so I'm keen on the LE '66. From what I can tell, it's virtually identical to the standard G-400 except for this.

 

Now, music123 has it for $399, $50 more than the standard (is it just for the pickguard?). All of a sudden I see that guitar center online has it for $299, $50 LESS than the standard. I don't think they have free shipping though.

 

music123: http://www.music123.com/Epiphone-Limited-Edition-1966-G-400-Electric-Guitar-512455-i1166714.Music123

GC: http://www.guitarcenter.com/Epiphone-Limited-Edition-1966-G-400-Electric-Guitar-102676350-i1166714.gc

 

So here're my questions:

 

1) Am I correct in my assumptions regarding the difference between standard G-400 and this '66?

 

2) Do recommend buying online from one of these establishments? I know that it means I'll be unable to play it before I pay. You all are always discussing what the best factories are, for example I know RotcanX says try to get one from the EE factory. Can I find out the serial number before I buy? Do these LEs all come from the same place? You're help is appreciated as I've never bought an Epi, and never bought any guitar online.

 

Any other advice is appreciated as well, including other G-400 flavors. I will probably call around the local GCs to see if they have any in stock (the closest had a standard G-400 that was missing a string and set up not so good). Also, after reading this forum for a month or so, I'm not adverse to upgrading the pups at some point down the line, so I'm really looking for overall tonal quality of the instrument. I can't afford to go Gibson either.

 

Thanks so much.

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Unfortunately you can never be sure about the place of manufacture. We get G-400s from EE, DW and even UC (Unsung China) and there's no rhyme or reason to it. A lot of the LEs are coming from Unsung Korea (U) too; when I ordered my '1965' SG with Maestro I was expecting an EE since all the promo pix showed an obvious EE model but when it arrived it was a U.

 

I think if you want that kind of control over what you are getting you have to go with Sweetwater.

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Unfortunately you can never be sure about the place of manufacture. We get G-400s from EE' date=' DW and even UC (Unsung China) and there's no rhyme or reason to it. A lot of the LEs are coming from Unsung Korea (U) too; when I ordered my '1965' SG with Maestro I was expecting an EE since all the promo pix showed an obvious EE model but when it arrived it was a U.

 

I think if you want that kind of control over what you are getting you have to go with Sweetwater.[/quote']

 

Or, get the current Gibson production "Standard." It's only money! ;>)

 

Actually, as you probably know already, the "Standard" G-400 is configured more like the original SG.

So, I've always thought of the '61 as being THE SG. The full sized pickguard was from '65 on.

I like those, but I've always (personally) preferred the '61 style...especially the deeper bevels,

in the areas between the horns and the neck, and wider bevels along the top edge. The closest

you can get to a Gibson '61, or VOS...is the current Japanese Epiohone '61 SG. More expensive, than the Chinese

versions, but considerably less, than Gibson's..and with a "Nitro" finish, too. (If that's any concern?)

The now discontinued "Elitist" versions were great, as well...as Spud can attest.

Just my 2-cents worth...

 

CB

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The '66ers are all EEs' date=' IIRC.

The discrepancy in price allows you to make M123 price match and ship free, as well as possibly knocking some extra off.

They're same as regular G-400s, other than PG.[/quote']

 

Wow, I didn't even think about price matching. Thanks!

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Unfortunately you can never be sure about the place of manufacture. We get G-400s from EE' date=' DW and even UC (Unsung China) and there's no rhyme or reason to it. A lot of the LEs are coming from Unsung Korea (U) too; when I ordered my '1965' SG with Maestro I was expecting an EE since all the promo pix showed an obvious EE model but when it arrived it was a U.

 

I think if you want that kind of control over what you are getting you have to go with Sweetwater.[/quote']

 

Is Sweetwater an online dealer? I'll have to check it out. What's makes the EE "obvious", other than the serial #? Would it be worth it to call one of these places and ask where they come from, as the LEs don't come from everywhere?

Is Unsung a quality factory? My questions are multiplying like a hydra.

 

Is music123 a good seller?

 

Yeah CB, it's only money, but after surfing here for a while and listening to you guys going on about modding and semi/hollow bodies, I'm already getting ready to save for those :)

 

Btw Rotcan, who was your former avatar? Don't laugh too much or get upset, but it kinda reminded me of Adam Ant. :-&

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Sweetwater is a good dealer and your sales rep will be in contact with you throughout the process. My experience anyway. With these guys, what you see is what you get, right down to the serial number.

 

I actually have had pretty good luck with Music123, not so much with Musicians Friend, even though they are practically the same company. I got both my Epis through Music123 and they both arrived in perfect condition.

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I played a '66 G-400 in Guitar Center a few weeks ago (priced $299), and to this day, it was the only SG that I've been willing to pay retail price for. Other G-400s just haven't felt or sounded as nice, to me.

 

I'm sure my preference wasn't related to the pickguard, though. Just found a "good" one.

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I actually have had pretty good luck with Music123' date=' not so much with Musicians Friend, even though they are practically the same company. I got both my Epis through Music123 and they both arrived in perfect condition.[/quote']I was under the impression that online orders from Musician's Friend, Music123, and Guitar Center were all handled by Musician's Friend's warehouse. I know if I order something from Music123 or Musician's Friend (whichever has a better promotion), the packing slip doesn't always have the name I ordered from. I've never ordered from Guitar Center.

 

I ordered a cable a few weeks ago, and it wasn't in stock, and they didn't plan on getting it in stock. Because of the inconvenience, they sent me a $25 gift certificate for a $5.50 cable. Complain all you want about the company, but that is customer service.

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Thanks for all your replies so far. I hate being limited by something so superficial, but I'm really partial to the full pickguard. I'm sure you all understand. I checked sweetwater; that's really cool that you can actually view the serial number.

 

So if a lot of the LE's are coming from Unsung in Korea... anything negative to say about that?

 

Also, has anyone had any problems returning guitars to music123 because they didn't like them (i.e. bad tone rather than defects)? I want the thing to sound decent when played clean.

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I was under the impression that online orders from Musician's Friend' date=' Music123, and Guitar Center were all handled by Musician's Friend's warehouse. I know if I order something from Music123 or Musician's Friend (whichever has a better promotion), the packing slip doesn't always have the name I ordered from. I've never ordered from Guitar Center.

 

I ordered a cable a few weeks ago, and it wasn't in stock, and they didn't plan on getting it in stock. Because of the inconvenience, they sent me a $25 gift certificate for a $5.50 cable. Complain all you want about the company, but [i']that[/i] is customer service.

 

Did my post come across as a complaint or am I just misinterpreting the intent of your last sentence? I'm thinking the latter.

 

Anyway, I'm not sure about the warehouse thing. I do know that when I ordered my Epi ES-135 last year (2007) from MF, it arrived broken. Called customer service, and ordered a replacement. When that one arrived, it was broken the same way. Reason? Bad packing technique at the warehouse. Ordered same guitar from M123, and it arrived in pristine condition.

 

Now, I don't dispute the good customer service at MF. It is good, no doubt about that.

 

To be fair, I emailed MF about my concerns and a few days later, got a call back from one of their managers. He apologized for the inconvenience and gave me a $50 credit to use toward future purchases.

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Hey' date=' nobody felt like mentioning the '66 is painted in real Heritge Cherry? It looks sooo good IRL. :D [/quote']

 

My fault I guess since I knew it was somewhat different. Still haven't seen it in real life. So that and the pickguard are the differences. I see that you have one. Did you get yours at GC or online? And how do you like it?

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My fault I guess since I knew it was somewhat different. Still haven't seen it in real life. So that and the pickguard are the differences. I see that you have one. Did you get yours at GC or online?

 

Guitar Center. That was one of the reasons I liked it so much. It just had something special about it, which I later found out was the color.

 

BTW, it wasn't your fault, it was ours because we didn't tell you.

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I have a '66 RI G-400 and it is a smoking guitar, its my #1. IF you are ordering it online, I highly suggest you get it shipped to you in a hardshell case. The first 2 that i ordered without a case arrived to me with broken headstocks. Save yourself the headache and get it shipped in a case.

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Anyway' date=' I'm not sure about the warehouse thing. I do know that when I ordered my Epi ES-135 last year (2007) from MF, it arrived broken. Called customer service, and ordered a replacement. When that one arrived, it was broken the same way. Reason? [b']Bad packing technique at the warehouse[/b]

 

+1 I was quite amazed that my guitar arrived from MF in one piece. The packing was a joke. The packing from

Sweetwater was excellent - rigid cardboard box, inner contents in big plastic bag, lots of well-packed crumbled

paper surrounding the contents, WHICH WAS A GUITAR CASE.

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Did my post come across as a complaint or am I just misinterpreting the intent of your last sentence? I'm thinking the latter.

That bit wasn't necessarily directed at you... the general flow of events is that someone mentions that they had a problem with the company' date=' and then everyone else comes in with how terrible they are at everything.

 

+1 I was quite amazed that my guitar arrived from MF in one piece. The packing was a joke. The packing from

Sweetwater was excellent - rigid cardboard box, inner contents in big plastic bag, lots of well-packed crumbled

paper surrounding the contents, WHICH WAS A GUITAR CASE.

I ordered some equipment a few months ago, and was a bit upset at how it was packed... it was a guitar case, a microphone stand, a cable, and an XLR-1/4" adapter. They were all packed in one large box, packed with paper. The adapter, which is only about three inches long, was loose, ratting around the box. In shipment (I assume), one corner of the box had worn a hole - large enough for three of these adapters to fit through simultaneously.

 

I had ordered a Musician's Gear vintage-style Strat case, with a big, open space inside. They could have put the adapter (and the cable, even) inside of it, rather than leaving it to fall out.

 

This was from Music123.

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Yeah, I think someone mentioned recently that you can sometimes get a place to ship a guitar in a case.

 

Last night I told my wife that I saw the Epi sg at guitar center for only $300 (I had previously missed it somehow) and she said "It's kinda sad that you're not getting the 'real thing'. How much is that?" I told her that a Gibson SG Special Faded (the lowest end one?) was about $700 and she didn't even flinch. What a woman. I guess it's a good thing that I'm in charge of the finances though ;)

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Yeah' date=' I think someone mentioned recently that you can sometimes get a place to ship a guitar in a case.

 

Last night I told my wife that I saw the Epi sg at guitar center for only $300 (I had previously missed it somehow) and she said "It's kinda sad that you're not getting the 'real thing'. How much is that?" I told her that a Gibson SG Special Faded (the lowest end one?) was about $700 and she didn't even flinch. What a woman. I guess it's a good thing that I'm in charge of the finances though ;)

[/quote']

 

Hah, you're a lucky dude! ;)

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