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Want a Beatles Casino type of guitar; more confused then ever


Pie

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I want a Casino that is close to the Beatles' versions as far as looks and sound goes but I'm no millionaire. This is probably asking a lot but could anyone give me a list of the guitar options I have along with:

 

pros and cons of each model

where they're made

average prices for each model

etc

 

I just don't want to throw my money at one of these guitars until I understand more about them.

 

So far I'm aware of:

 

Standard Casino - (made in china?) for around $600

Elitist Casino

IBJL (don't know what the "IB" means)

ES-330

Kalamazoo (don't know what that is)

 

I'm confused about all the differences and don't know if there are other models too. I don't know which guitar to set my sights on and I won't be able to play one in person because the closest store that carries these sorts of guitars is around 50 miles away and they never have anything but Dots in stock. The only way to even get a standard casino in stock to test it is to give them $100 deposit.

 

Sorry if I'm asking for too much info. I'm willing to do the research myself but I'm hoping some of you won't mind sharing your own knowledge about this stuff.

 

Thanks for any help!

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I want a Casino or Gibson that is as close to the Beatles versions as I can get for as cheap as I can get. This is probably asking a lot but could anyone give me a list of guitar options I have along with the pros and cons of each model and their average prices?

 

So far I'm aware of:

 

Casino - standard (made in china?) version for around $600

Elitist Casino

IBJL (don't know what the "IB" means)

ES-330

Kalamazoo (don't know what that is)

 

I don't which guitar to set my sights on and I won't be able to play one in person because the closest store that carries these sorts of guitars is like 50 miles away and they never have anything but Dots in stock.

 

Thanks for any help!

 

Hi Pie!

 

The Beatles used Casinos. Of course they are not the same as the ones today, but there are many here who love their Cassies!

The Elitist Casino will set you back about $1,500 new.

IBJL- Inspired By John Lennon, new about $1,000.

Kalamazoo is an older Gibson (late '60's to early '70's) that went through two styles, one fender like, the other a double cutaway, like an SG. Not made of solid wood. Not sure why that would be on your list, it's a solid body.

 

Of course, you could go for the Revolution Casino or the John Lennon 1965 Casino, but they both cost over $2,500!

 

Sheila

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First, do a "search" for Casino, on this forum. There are lots of dicussions, about the various models.

 

But, a quick (current) overview:

 

Standard Casino...Made in China, Asian parts and pickups, and the least expensive version.

About $600.00 (Case is extra)

 

IBJH (Inspired By John Lennon)..also made in China, but to more correct specs, to the original

USA vintage versions, with USA parts, and electronics/pickups. Comes in only matte finished

Natural, and Vintage (glossy poly) Sunburst.

From $785.00 to 999.00 w/case...depending on where you buy it.

 

"Elitist" Casino. Made in Japan, USA Parts, and Electronics/Pickups. Wonderful craftsmanship,

with Poly finish...gloss natural, and vintage sunburst. Comes with a Elitist case (very nice)...

and runs anywhere from $1,150.00, to 1,500.00 again...depending on where you buy them.

 

"Lennon" USA versions...Matte Natural ("Revolution" version), and Vintage Sunburst (1965 Version).

"Nitro" finished, and spec's to John Lennon's actual guitar. Limited edition, to 1965 of each Finish/type.

$2,400+ depending on where you buy them. Includes Case, and "Case candy" limited edition paperwork,

and all the extras, to complete the "Lennon" look.

 

CB

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If you want the model closest to The Beatles Casino's for not too much money then you're probably best going for the IBJL model (Inspired By John Lennon = IBJL). That comes in sunburst or natural depending on what period you're after. The standard Casino is fine but the Chinese made IBJL has Gibson pickups and better switches/sockets etc. There is (or was) also a limited edition John Lennon model but that is/was quite expensive. The Elitist was made in Japan and is very good quality but may or may not still be available and was more expensive than the IBJL model. The Beatles never used ES-330's (as far as I know) and they were made by Gibson. Kalamazoo is where Epiphones were made in the 60's. A Used one of those would cost about £2000.00 UK I don't know the cost in the US.

Pros and cons of each model - depends on what you hear really. I guess some guys would choose a standard over a IBJL but I don't know. You could always buy the standard and mod it later.

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Standard Casino - (made in china?) for around $600

Elitist Casino

IBJL (don't know what the "IB" means)

ES-330

Kalamazoo (don't know what that is)

 

Inspired By John Lennon - New model with USA pickups and better construction' date=' closer to vintage specs, sells typically for $999, but considering it has Gibson USA pickups and a hard shell case, it seems like a pretty good deal. Having said that, this is the one model I haven't owned but it looks good on paper. If I were in the market for a Casino, I would check this one out.

 

Elitist - Excellent, professional quality instrument. About $1500. I wish I had mine back.

 

Kalamazoo Casino is a vintage Gibson USA made circa 1960s, same as the Gibson ES-330. Mega bucks.

 

The standard Casino is OK, but I don't like the thicker neck and the body isn't as resonant as the Elitist. I believe that's due to the Standard's 3 ply top as opposed to the others having 5 thinner layers of wood. From what I've read, the IBJLs have the traditional 5 ply top (as well as the vintage profile neck). I know you said it's hard to test drive these guitars, but if you do get the opportunity, don't plug them in right away. Play them acoustically and note the tone. Richer, warmer tone will translate into better amplified tone.

 

If I had to buy sight unseen, I would go for the IBJL over the Standard considering the pickups and case.

 

[img']http://home.earthlink.net/~jkmcleer/Guitars/casinos.jpg[/img]

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Those of us who play Elitist Casinos, everyone I've heard from, LOVE their guitars, arguably the equal of the more expensive John Lennon USA models. They have USA pickups and electronics, impeccable workmanship, just great. Here's one (blonde, ooohh) going on Ebay for a grand, so in the middle price range, comes from a music store so you could talk to someone about it. I want it. But I want to stay married more.

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200431334273&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT

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Hi Pie, I like my IBJL a lot, but I'd rather have an Elitist. I doubt that I would ever buy a 1965, just too expensive for a weekend player like me.

 

However, if deciding between the standard and the IBJL, the USA electronics are worth every penny. You should be able to get one for around $800 if you shop around. Musician's Fiend runs coupon code deals just about once a month, and the others will match.

 

Post some pics whatever you get!

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I have a MIC standard natural Casino and a 65 John Lennon and they are both above average guitars.The cheaper MIC Casino although it doesn't have the same attention to detail and sound as the J.L. it is a sweet guitar and well worth the money.The John Lennon Casino is one of the finest guitars made and a bargain at $2600(that's what I paid) the sound is crystal clear and of all my (24)guitars it is by far my favourite and the easiest to play.I have heard a lot of people say the IBJL and the Elitist are much the same for a lower price,if that's the case that would be a good option.

---------------------------------------------------------------------

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"Lennon" USA versions...Matte Natural ("Revolution" version)' date=' and Vintage Sunburst (1965 Version).

"Nitro" finished, and spec's to John Lennon's actual guitar. Limited edition, to 1965 of each Finish/type.

$2,400+ depending on where you buy them. Includes Case, and "Case candy" limited edition paperwork,

and all the extras, to complete the "Lennon" look.[/quote']

 

Probably should clarify for the chap that the "Lennon USA versions" are actually made in Japan as well, in the same factory as are the Elitists. Assembly is completed in the US (ie, installation of hardware, setup, etc.) I don't know if the finish is applied at Terada or Nashville.

 

So as far as build quality, the Elitist will be every bit as good, but some of the subtle things that make a Lennon a Lennon won't be there, ie thin matte finish and black switch washer. Oh, and you don't pay the exhorbitent licensing fee for the Lennon name. I know which one I'd pick [biggrin]

 

Cheers

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The Revs have huge headstocks, and have nylon bridge saddles. And the bridge post go directly in the wood (at least I think they do).

 

It's those little differences that make it sound a tad different...... But does that justify a $2400 price tag??

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The Revs have huge headstocks' date=' and have nylon bridge saddles. And the bridge post go directly in the wood (at least I think they do).

 

It's those little differences that make it sound a tad different...... [/quote']

 

The Rev/'64 JL Casinos have corrian nut (Elitist has bone), full size pots (Elitist has smaller Asian style), and longer tailpieces, too. The Elitist also has the higher mass Grover tuners. As you say, small differences, but they do amount to a difference in voice.

 

I have a Revolution, a '64 JL, and an Elitist, and all three are excellent. The Elitist has features (bone nut, steel saddles, Grovers) that a present-day guitar might find desirable; the Rev/'64 JLs are vintage speced.

 

There's nothing inherently "wrong" with ploy finishes, if done well. I have dozens of guitars that have them. The Elitist's is expertly and thinly applied. Given the choice, I prefer nitro, though.

 

As Duane says, whether those differences are worth it to you personally is your choice. It's nice that there's a worthy Casino for every budget these days.

 

Another option, of course, is the Gibson ES 330. Cheaper than the Rev and '64 JLs.

 

Red 333

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