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To Gibson ES335 or NOT to Gibson ES335....THAT is the question.....


onewilyfool

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I've been looking for a hollow body electric for some time now and am just confused as hell about the options. I have tried the Gibson ES335 (dot neck), the Epiphone Sheraton, the Ibanez AS 80, AS 180, and a few others. The one thing that they all feel good and sound good. I'm partial to the ES 335, but even USED, they go for around $1600 to 1800 where I am (N. California)....which is OUCH budget wise.....any adivice out there would be appreciated....thanks...

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I've been looking for a hollow body electric for some time now and am just confused as hell about the options. I have tried the Gibson ES335 (dot neck)' date=' the Epiphone Sheraton, the Ibanez AS 80, AS 180, and a few others. The one thing that they all feel good and sound good. I'm partial to the ES 335, but even USED, they go for around $1600 to 1800 where I am (N. California)....which is OUCH budget wise.....any adivice out there would be appreciated....thanks...[/quote']

 

Give consideration to the Epiphone Elitist '61 Dot. In my mind, it's the closest thing to a Gibson 335, and can be had from $800 (used) to $1300 (new). The quality of these guitars (and all of the Elitist models) is unquestionably superb.

 

How about an ES 339? Smaller body than the 335, but a GREAT guitar. Scratch 'N Dents are frequently on Musician's Friend for about $1350. That's an outstanding value. Even full price ($1799) is a great deal.

 

In another thread, I saw that you are considering a 333. Good choice, but some are put off by the satin finish and relatively plain tops.

 

Red 333

 

Red 333

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I hear ya man. I want one too, but am concerned with the size, but can't do the smaller ones because they're, well, smaller.

 

I'm still gigging clubs, so will probably put it off a few more years and get the R8.

 

This stuff will drive ya crazy, if nothing else.

 

God bless.

 

Murph.

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I've been looking for a hollow body electric for some time now and am just confused as hell about the options. I have tried the Gibson ES335 (dot neck)' date=' the Epiphone Sheraton, the Ibanez AS 80, AS 180, and a few others. The one thing that they all feel good and sound good. I'm partial to the ES 335, but even USED, they go for around $1600 to 1800 where I am (N. California)....which is OUCH budget wise.....any adivice out there would be appreciated....thanks...[/quote']

 

Value-wise, it's a wash. Buy the Gibson, and you're out $1800, but it's also worth $1800 on ebay the next day, and probably goes up in value if you keep it in good condition. Lets say you use it hard and sell it in 6 years, you get $1400.

 

Buy an epiphone or Ibanez for $600, and you use it hard and sell it in 6 years, you get $200.

 

Anyway, you get the point.

 

Depends what you want. If you just want a guitar and don't care about name or whatever, buy an inexpensive korean or chinese semi-hollow (look at Peerless, BTW), upgrade the hardware and electronics, and you'll be really happy. If you want something that will hold its value and is classic, buy the Gibson.

 

I wanted a Gibson, I just always wanted one. I love it.

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I've been looking for a hollow body electric for some time now and am just confused as hell about the options. I have tried the Gibson ES335 (dot neck)' date=' the Epiphone Sheraton, the Ibanez AS 80, AS 180, and a few others. The one thing that they all feel good and sound good. I'm partial to the ES 335, but even USED, they go for around $1600 to 1800 where I am (N. California)....which is OUCH budget wise.....any adivice out there would be appreciated....thanks...[/quote']

 

Onewiley,

 

There's a BLEM antique natural ES 335 on MF for about $1650(!) right now (new, these sell for $2800-$3100). I can't help feel that this is a mistake in pricing as there's a BLEM burst for $2200. Either that, or it's really, REALLY scratched and dented! Either way, it might be worth a look. MF has a 45 day return policy, so all you'd be out is shipping back to them if you don't like it.

 

Red 333

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OWF

 

Is this your first post about an ES prospective buy, or do I recall at least one other? I can't locate any posts older than a week on this forum section to verify one way or the other. I'd appreciate your answering. It would help me a great deal in replying. Thanks.

 

Steve

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Hi Guys....thanks for all the help....by the way, I just missed the Blem sale at Musicians friend.....lol....they go fast....I'm thinking that the Epi Eliitist or the Gibson 335 is the way to go, and I will keep my eyes on them....I don't check this forum every day, so thanks. I was checking into at CS 336, but even used they go for $2K so still looking, HG.....Thanks for asking...

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I have a Dot reissue in Cherry' date=' I'll never part with it.

 

Trust me, if you buy the 335 you will never feel the pains of guilt from wishing you'd bought an Ibanez or Epiphone.[/quote']

 

Yeah, I tried to give a "balanced" answer, but my experience is exactly what this guy said.

 

The sting of the extra cost for the genuine Gibby will fade; the sour taste at having "settled" for less than what you really wanted will linger.

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Murph,

 

I have an R8. On 335s, I don't know why people see the size as an issue. They are the most comfortable fitting best balanced guitar Gibson makes whether one is sitting or standing, IMO, and the most versatile as well. You can get a Memphis line model or climb the ES ladder. Either way, play one for a week and it's a part of you for keeps.

 

Steve

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Many premium instruments have clones/copies which are intended for sale to those who can't or won't purchase the expensive, premium guitar. Some clones, as well as some lower tier guitars (even those plastic Martins) are manufactured and sold by the same manufacturer of the premium gear. The "high-end" (high priced) market has shrunk due to the escalating prices of the premium gear, and currently the miserable economy exacerbates the problem. They sell less expensive gear in order to meet the market; sell what people will/can buy.

 

Those instruments may look the same (outwardly), and perhaps may sound similar, but there is a reason for the price differential. BMWs and Hyundais both serve the same purpose, and they might each even have a model which looks similar, but are they really the same?

 

If you want a premium instrument, you have to buy the real deal. If you are going to be pleased with an alternative instrument that costs less, that is also fine. It is simply a matter of what you want; what will satisfy/please you. There are many guitars that play really well and sound great which are also real values, and they are not the premium instruments. There are also many lousy guitars, and they are not restricted to just the inexpensive ones (sadly). Many of us have owned (and still own) both fine, premium guitars, and a couple of "lesser" instruments (typically what we started off with before we could even afford good gear).

 

Good luck with your decision. Enjoy whatever you decide to buy. Just don't buy real junk; you'll regret it. Value is defined by quality relative to price.

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Many of us have owned (and still own) both fine' date=' premium guitars, and a couple of "lesser" instruments (typically what we started off with before we could even afford good gear).

[/quote']

 

Col F's answer is great advice. I'd just like to add something to the above: "Many of us have owned (and still own) both fine, premium guitars, and a couple of "lesser" instruments (typically what we started off with before we could even afford or appreciate good gear).

 

Red 333

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I have a Dot reissue in Cherry' date=' I'll never part with it.

 

Trust me, if you buy the 335 you will never feel the pains of guilt from wishing you'd bought an Ibanez or Epiphone.[/quote']

 

This is exactly how I feel about it. Both would be fine instruments but I would forever wish I had a 335.

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See if this helps any....

 

 

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You don't get your dream guitars by dreaming, you go out and GET them.

 

Once upon a time (1999) I got divorced and gave away everything - literally everything - and all I managed to keep would fit in my old pickup.

This included a Strat, a cheap solid state amp, a couple guns, and a dog.

My clothes were packed in garbage bags because I didn't even have luggage.

 

I started buying, collecting, hoarding guitars and guns and bought the stuff I always wanted.

It costs money, takes effort, and requires some sacrifice - I spent very little on dating women, being the tightwad I am...

 

We all have our comfort zone and threshold of financial pain, but I would rather spend a little more and regret nothing.

Go cheap, you'll be left wanting - and have less money to boot!

 

 

Oh, the MM on the left is for sale.

That's what happens when you buy cheap guitars, and selling them means you lose your *** on them.

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I've come around to Gibson after years of Fender, Ric, Gretsch, no-name and whatnot, and my main electric now is a '70 Les Paul Deluxe.

 

But I felt the urge for a thin hollow body (just sold my '63 Chet Atkins Country Gent a couple of years ago) and fell into a horse trading deal for an Epiphone Sheraton II in natural - '95 in natural finish -- and I thought that would satisfy my lust.

 

Except that a friend has a Gibson ES-340 in bird's-eye natural that has aged very nicely, with a maple neck and killer humbuckers...playing the two side by side, acoustically, tells the story: the 340 sounds like a Gibson, dammit, and the Epi sounds not so good -- trebly and ringy. I swapped the pickups on the Sheraton for Seymour Duncans (Jazz neck, JB bridge), replaced all the electronics (including going with near-Gibson spec caps: .020 on the bridge, .050 on the neck) and, while I can get some pretty good sounds out of it (and it's purty) it sure as hell ain't a Gibson.

 

I love the look of the Epi, and expect to keep it, but the bottom line is: it sure as hell ain't a Gibson.

 

I'm not a snob: the name on the peghead don't mean squat, but the sound coming out of the amplifier is what rules, and the Epi don't cut it.

 

Trust me: save up and buy a Gibson. That's what I'm going to do.

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hey OWF, been offline for a few days so have just seen your post.if you search past 3 or 4 months threads you'll find similar posts from me, and I did indeed go through a very similar process.

 

Very quickly - my last guitar was a squire tele (my thought at the time - well, its actually made by Fender, so how different can it be from say a mexican made tele?). All good for 2 years ... then i was suddenly very disappointed that I didnt have the real thing!

 

So, when I considered the epi sheraton, or a first act, or any of the others I had to keep remnding myself - better to wait and get what you want than to buy something lesser.

 

It has been put very eloquently by a number of people in this thread, but here's my take on it - when you get together with a girl that you know you're not madly in love with, but lets say, i dont know, is 'compatible' in 'other ways' you may be able to go thru the motions, but you'll always know its doomed to end at some point - no matter how good the 'strumming' feels initially.

 

same thing here ... just wait until you can have the love of your life ... it only feels better!

 

for me, that meant sticking cash in an envelope and hiding it under my bed-side drawers, and extensivey researching and playing over a 18-24 month period ... until I finally picked up a brand new 335.

 

I play more now than ever, and have improved more in the past 4 months that i did in the previous 15 years!!

 

Wait be patient, dream. an ibanez is not a gibson. a 339 is NOT a 335.

 

good luck

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Oh Wily one you are over here coveting a 335 eh, well that leaves the field open for me to snaffle a Robert Johnston.

 

To be serious I have the dumb blonde which is a natural 335 2003.

 

I wouldn't trade it for the world largely because it was a present from my wife and she'd string me up!

 

Albert John also has a 335 and I agree with him that £ for £ , sorry $ for $ they are the best thing avaiable for the money with the possible exception of an Ibanez LR10 Lee Ritenour I used to own and stupidly traded in years ago. That had a sublime neck if anything I would rate it slightly abot the Dumb Blonde.

 

However those who have played her say she's great so I guess she is.

 

You know better than most that "you pays your money and takes your choice" if you need or even want a 335 variant it has to be the real thing IMHO of course!]

 

BR

 

J

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