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Received Joe Bonamassa Special Edtion


wbg

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Hello all,

 

I am new to the forum, and wanted to report on my new guitar, the Joe Bonamassa Special edition. I don't have pictures, but they are identical to the picture on the Epiphone website. For a little background, I pre ordered this guitar on Dec. 3 from Musician's Friend with an expected release date of Dec. 31. Much to my delight, it showed up on Dec. 23rd. Prior to that, I had read all of the disparaging comments, about This guitar and Epiphones in general on the Gibson Forum and psychologically was beginning to regret my decision to purchase this guitar. What a wonderful surprise. I have owned a Gibson Les Paul Deluxe, Les Paul Standard, and two studios as well as an ES 173. I currently have a Melody Maker. To me, none of my Gibsons played well no matter what the set up. I play through a Fender Deluxe Reverb with a Tube Screamer Reissue. This new Epi--wow! I used jeweler's glasses and inspected this guitar so well that Dan Erlewine would have been proud. There wer NO cosmetic flaws or blemishes. The set up was at Gibson factory specs, which is high for some, but acceptable for me since I play blues and bend strings a lot. The guitar arrived in a box that was labeled Made in China, with an additional label from the Gibson Nashville factory that read "Set up by Gibson." The Gibson inspection checklist was was enclosed, and after having bought 4 new Gibsons, this was the 1st time I had a complete Checklis and could read the inspector's names. The string height(treble was 4/64) and Bass(5/64). The neck relief(capo at the 1st fret) was .008. Gibson's recommendations are .012. None of my Gibsons could meet this Spec(lower than .012) without fret buzz. The Joe Bonamassa has none at .008. The only this that I have changed was adjusting the pickups. I would urge all members of this forum to learn how to adjust pickps before throwing away money on aftermaket pickups. This is especially true in learning to adjust pole pieces. The Bursstbucker II and III's are the ticket! Remember, they are overwound and ech will have it's own personality. The Guitar stays in tune and the intonation is perfect. The case is nice. So for all of those elite Gibson fans, I paid $700.00 for what I could have bought for $2500.00 from Gibson. I was amused to think that all of the Gibson snobs wrote in on their Made in China computers.

 

One additional note: In adjusting pickups, I begin by setting the amp volume, and then setting the bass treble etc. to 0. Then, I turn the volume of the guitar all the way up and set the pickups at factory recommendations. I balance them for loudness and the raise or lower as needed. Finally, I fine tune by adjusting individual pole pieces. All of this is done clean, without distortion. I then can make adjustments with my amp. You would be surprised at the range of sound that can be acquired. In closing, the Joe Bonamassa Pickups did not need gross adjustment, but merely fine tuning.

 

Bottom Line--Tis is an incredible Guitar-be prepared for the thick 50's neck, which I fine easier to play. It is like a "baseball bat."

 

Barry Green-Burns

Livingston, AL

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Sorry,

 

I guess that I was not 100% accurate. The Gold fleck and sparkle are much more prominent in vivo. I have always experienced a better looking real object in hand than photographs!! I really did not buy on looks, but on electronics etc. I have always been intriqued by the notion of a black guit with a gold top and black pickguard. In the flesh, this guitar exceeds just "nice looking." It sparkles in light.

 

BGB

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Way to go, Barry!

 

I'm glad that you're having such a great experience with your new axe. Epiphone has been turning out some pretty outstanding guitars lately ... yours is another shining example of just what a quality instrument can be had for a fraction of the price.

 

On that subject, let's give our Gibby-playing/Epi-hating brothers and sisters a little bit of a break here. If you had spent that much more for your guitar, wouldn't you want to believe it was "better"? :rolleyes:

 

Congrats and HNGD! (I wanna see pics too!)

 

Jim

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Way to go, Barry!

 

I'm glad that you're having such a great experience with your new axe. Epiphone has been turning out some pretty outstanding guitars lately ... yours is another shining example of just what a quality instrument can be had for a fraction of the price.

 

On that subject, let's give our Gibby-playing/Epi-hating brothers and sisters a little bit of a break here. If you had sent that much more for your guitar, wouldn't you want to believe it was "better"? :rolleyes:

 

Congrats and HNGD! (I wanna see pics too!)

 

Jim

 

 

Hey Jim.

 

 

I recollect you buying a Gibson LP about a year or so back...................was it a trad pro?

 

Now you've had time to get to know her I'm really interested in what you think of her versus your Epi LPs in terms of playability, crafstmanship, materials etc. Is it worth the extra cash?

 

Alan

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Pictures!!

 

I took some picres of the guitar and the case, and have them downloadaed on my computer. I have Kodak EasyShare, but I have no clue how to get them to the forum. I would be beholding to anyone who could give me directions!!

 

Thanks,

 

BGB

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Pictures!!

 

I took some picres of the guitar and the case, and have them downloadaed on my computer. I have Kodak EasyShare, but I have no clue how to get them to the forum. I would be beholding to anyone who could give me directions!!

 

Thanks,

 

BGB

 

 

............top of the DIY thread in the Epiphone Lounge forum.

 

Can't wait to see it. Congrats!

 

Alan

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I am Going to try Photos.

 

Barry G-Bhttp://i1127.photobucket.com/albumshttp://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/l627/Green-Shanks/000_0470-1.jpg/l627/Green-Shanks/000_0470-1.jpg

 

http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/l627/Green-Shanks/Image7.jpg

 

 

 

http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/l627/Green-Shttp://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/l627/Green-Shanks/Image5.jpghanks/Image6.jpg

 

http://i1127.photobucket.com/albums/l627/Green-Shanks/Image2.jpg

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Can I ask??...Where did you get that beauty???

Am/Musical was kinda the first to put it up on thier site and I pre-ordered it that morning...

Still nothing yet and I even called them a few times to make sure I was still in ...

I seen a few people also got thiers and they got thiers from M/F who I think who just recently

added the "Epi J/B" to thier site....

Anyway I guess a few came through with a crooked neck or headstock !!!!

With only a 1000 being made I wonder how that huge problem will be taken care of....

Well it's a beauty you have there for sure....I'm still waiting.....

Good luck with it and check the neck looking from the headstock down....

Here's the link to the guys that had neck troubles.....

 

http://www.jbonamassa.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=14744&p=8

 

http://s541.photobucket.com/albums/gg394/sjmckean1/?action=view&current=DSC00194.jpg

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Can I ask??...Where did you get that beauty???

Am/Musical was kinda the first to put it up on thier site and I pre-ordered it that morning...

Still nothing yet and I even called them a few times to make sure I was still in ...

I seen a few people also got thiers and they got thiers from M/F who I think who just recently

added the "Epi J/B" to thier site....

Anyway I guess a few came through with a crooked neck or headstock !!!!

With only a 1000 being made I wonder how that huge problem will be taken care of....

Well it's a beauty you have there for sure....I'm still waiting.....

Good luck with it and check the neck looking from the headstock down....

Here's the link to the guys that had neck troubles.....

 

http://www.jbonamassa.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=14744&p=8

 

http://s541.photobucket.com/albums/gg394/sjmckean1/?action=view&current=DSC00194.jpg

 

 

Deeblues,

 

I preordered it from Musician's Fried on Dec 3. I was promised a release date of Dec. 31, and lo and behold, came on Dec 23. I had it shipped USPS Priority. I received a notice on the 21 that it had shipped. I prepaid it, but it was not charged to my card until shipped. I had no issues with the neck. I examined it with jewelers glasses and a steel straight edge. I have a 6oth anniversary strat and an Highway one tele, and neither have necks this straight. The photos that the guy posted with a skewed neck lokk more like the nut is off. If one reads the Dan Erlewine Guitar repair manual, you will find tha almost no guitar has a Perfecectly "straight" neck. That is why they put truss rods in them. I try to get minimum neck relief at my desired string height, and then check the intonation. It works for me. The neck relief on my Joe Bonamassa LTD was alredy significantly lower than the factory specs. The factor is .012. Mine was set at a little less than .008.

 

 

Hope this helps,

 

BGB

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Yeah WBG the more I look at his pictures the more I think it's the headstock that's twisted....

He does have about 10 pictures of it and I can't seem to find the link they're in.....

Glad you didn't run into this problem and I wonder how Epi will settle it.....

I have my fingers crossed AMS said maybe the second week of January mine will be shipped...

It's gonna be tough to keep them crossed until then......

My online luck hasn't been too good lately....

Enjoy your new gold beauty.......

 

 

 

 

Deeblues,

 

I preordered it from Musician's Fried on Dec 3. I was promised a release date of Dec. 31, and lo and behold, came on Dec 23. I had it shipped USPS Priority. I received a notice on the 21 that it had shipped. I prepaid it, but it was not charged to my card until shipped. I had no issues with the neck. I examined it with jewelers glasses and a steel straight edge. I have a 6oth anniversary strat and an Highway one tele, and neither have necks this straight. The photos that the guy posted with a skewed neck lokk more like the nut is off. If one reads the Dan Erlewine Guitar repair manual, you will find tha almost no guitar has a Perfecectly "straight" neck. That is why they put truss rods in them. I try to get minimum neck relief at my desired string height, and then check the intonation. It works for me. The neck relief on my Joe Bonamassa LTD was alredy significantly lower than the factory specs. The factor is .012. Mine was set at a little less than .008.

 

 

Hope this helps,

 

BGB

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Hey Jim.

 

 

I recollect you buying a Gibson LP about a year or so back...................was it a trad pro?

 

Now you've had time to get to know her I'm really interested in what you think of her versus your Epi LPs in terms of playability, crafstmanship, materials etc. Is it worth the extra cash?

 

Alan

 

Well now ... that's an interesting question ... one that deserved some thought. I now own five Les Paul model guitars. Four of them are Epiphones (an Ultra, a '56 Goldtop, a Black Beauty 3, and a Prophecy GX) and one Gibson Traditional Pro. Let's talk about the Gibby Trad Pro for a moment:

 

The electronics on this thing are TOP NOTCH ... I mean, this guitar just sounds like nothing else I've ever heard. The PLEK'd fretboard responds to the lightest touch and is a real pleasure to play. The locking Grovers make string changing a snap and tuning is completely stable. The '57 PAF in the neck and the Burstbucker 3 in the bridge are both individually splitable so the guitar is very versatile. It's a plain top with a nice grain and the neck and body binding are nothing short of flawless. Truly a great instrument!

 

Now ... this guitar was NOT perfect out of the box. It required a couple of days of tinkering before it was where I wanted it. Furthermore, everything that is "special" on it (including the PLEK if you wanted to spend that much) can be upgraded on an Epiphone. Finally, I did not pay $2000 for this guitar! I work at Guitar Center, and with my employee discount it was more along the lines of your basic LP Studio ... not the faded ones ... but still a really nice price for this great axe!

 

I love all four of my Epi Les Pauls. Each one is different enough in tone and character to make sense in owning. I've never had a single issue with any of them and all of them are bone stock. I believe in being completely truthful with you guys so I will say this: My favorite of all of them to play is STILL the Epiphone LP Prophecy GX. This guitar is just outstanding in every way. A fully tricked-out, deluxe custom instrument that I paid street price for and was STILL half the price of my discounted Gibson.

 

Do I regret buying the Gibson? Hell no ... I love that guitar. I love every guitar I own (there were some klinkers that didn't last, but I'll be playing all five of these as long as I still have hands). I am here to tell you that higher end Epiphones are great instruments ... but you already knew that!

 

Jim

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Well now ... that's an interesting question ... one that deserved some thought. I now own five Les Paul model guitars. Four of them are Epiphones (an Ultra, a '56 Goldtop, a Black Beauty 3, and a Prophecy GX) and one Gibson Traditional Pro. Let's talk about the Gibby Trad Pro for a moment:

 

The electronics on this thing are TOP NOTCH ... I mean, this guitar just sounds like nothing else I've ever heard. The PLEK'd fretboard responds to the lightest touch and is a real pleasure to play. The locking Grovers make string changing a snap and tuning is completely stable. The '57 PAF in the neck and the Burstbucker 3 in the bridge are both individually splitable so the guitar is very versatile. It's a plain top with a nice grain and the neck and body binding are nothing short of flawless. Truly a great instrument!

 

Now ... this guitar was NOT perfect out of the box. It required a couple of days of tinkering before it was where I wanted it. Furthermore, everything that is "special" on it (including the PLEK if you wanted to spend that much) can be upgraded on an Epiphone. Finally, I did not pay $2000 for this guitar! I work at Guitar Center, and with my employee discount it was more along the lines of your basic LP Studio ... not the faded ones ... but still a really nice price for this great axe!

 

I love all four of my Epi Les Pauls. Each one is different enough in tone and character to make sense in owning. I've never had a single issue with any of them and all of them are bone stock. I believe in being completely truthful with you guys so I will say this: My favorite of all of them to play is STILL the Epiphone LP Prophecy GX. This guitar is just outstanding in every way. A fully tricked-out, deluxe custom instrument that I paid street price for and was STILL half the price of my discounted Gibson.

 

Do I regret buying the Gibson? Hell no ... I love that guitar. I love every guitar I own (there were some klinkers that didn't last, but I'll be playing all five of these as long as I still have hands). I am here to tell you that higher end Epiphones are great instruments ... but you already knew that!

 

Jim

 

 

Thanks for that, Jim. As you can see from my sig, I own two Epi LPs: a standard plus and a studio deluxe......both have upgraded pups but not wiring/pots/caps. The pickup swaps have vastly improved the tone for me. I base that judgment on the gear I use them with and the amount of gain I like to dial in.........plus 490s and JB/Jazz pups have a lot of top end bite so they completely remove any hint of 'mud'.

 

Now, I haven't played that many Gibbys as my town doesn't have stockists. However, most of the ones I have (including my own SG) felt very slightly better in terms of playability. I don't know whether this is due to better fret dressing, the quality of the fret board, the nut, the bridge or a combination of all of them.

 

The Studio deluxe has the better feel of mt two Epis but I put this down to the lack of plastic binding (I don't have anything objective to back up that judgement though.)

 

Anyway, I just wonder whether I ought to upgrade to a tusq nut, install a new bridge (or saddles) and get a fret dress to see whether this all brings things up to Gibson 'feel'.

 

I'm glad you raised the $2K retail price tag of the Gibby Trad Pro vs. what you paid. I read in to that that you would probably not have bought it at full price. This is the problem I have with Gibson LPs............they are overpriced for that extra bit of something that you get over an Epi. A studio may well be an exception but I just don't want to buy a chambered LP.

 

Cheers

 

Alan

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