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Guitarrob

Les Paul Studio or save a bit more?

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Hey, I have always loved the Les Paul sound and style. I have been considering getting one, but I have a limited budget these days. My GF suggested getting a Les Paul studio if I was after a Les Paul. I just have a few questions, How is the quality of the Les Paul studio version compared to say a model a few hundred up the ladder.

Another question, I am thinking this might have been asked before. If you only had a limited budget would you grab the Les Paul studio or go with an Epiphone of the same price....or save a bit more?

 

I really appreciate your help.

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G'day Guitarrob, Mate I suggest that you save more and fight the gas and be patient.

 

I would prefer a Les Paul Tradtitional over a studio any day of the week.

 

Both are good guitars, however if you go to a GC and play them both, I think you will be walking out with the Traditional due to it's build quality.

 

Like I said, save as much as possible to give yourself more options to choose from in the Les Paul range.

In the mean time get different quotes. [thumbup]

 

Good Luck and welcome to the forum. [biggrin]

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.

The build quality of the LP Studio is the same as other Gibson USA LPs. There's a difference in some of the materials and electronics depending on the model (there are several models in the Studio line up). The biggest difference between the Studio and Standard lines is the trim ("bling"). The Studio doesn't have binding and the headstock logo is generally a silk screen decal not inlaid MOP. The LP Studio is the best value in the Gibson line up. If you're into figured tops, for a bit more money you can get a LP Studio Pro Plus.

 

Gibson vs Epiphone. I happen to have both a Gibson LP and an Epiphone LP. If I was to be limited to one choice and had enough money to purchase a Gibson LP (Studio or other model), I would choose Gibson over Epiphone, no question. Of course there are many Epiphone fans/players who would dispute that choice. The fact is Epiphone was once a great independent guitar maker, but Epiphone was purchased by the Gibson parent corp back in 1957 and was quickly turned into what is basically Gibson's "B" line guitar company - value based instruments aimed at the lower end price points. To hold down costs, most Epiphones are built overseas (not in the USA) with different production standards, and the materials (wood, electronics and hardware) are in most cases less expensive then those found in Gibson guitars. I'm not knocking Epiphone - IMO it has a very nice value base guitar line - and Epiphone is a good choice of you're looking to get the most for the least amount of money.

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Play several and decide for yourself, choose the one that feels best for you. I own the Studio and Traditional, they are both great and I recommend that you give the Studio serious consideration. The build quality and electronics of the Studio are top notch; many good colors, finish choices and pickups. Mine is a mahogany worn brown with burstbuckers, but you also have more traditional build with mahogany body and maple top and 490/498 pickups, or the 60's tribute with P-90s. About all you miss on the Studio is the trim level (body and neck binding, inlaid logo). But, the key is how it feels and sounds to you.

 

The Epis are good, but if you really want a Gibson, get a Gibson.

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Hi im new here but heres my experience.

 

I would as people say try both and see what you prefer.

 

If you have the patience & experience you can get a Trad or Standard at a good price ONLINE

 

I purchased my 08 Standard for £1,240 a HUGE saving of £760!

 

But I must stress you should try a version out first before jumping in...

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I have compared between my own Studio and a Standard and found my Studio cut through more in tone than the Standard.

The Standard was also much heavier but that's due to my Studio being a Lite model.

If you are pretty rough on your instruments like I am you may want to go with the Studio.

 

Also check out the machine heads on both and compare.

My Studio came with some wiggly machine heads and eventually the back come off one of them so now I am getting them replaced with Grover Deluxe 135s.

For all I know Gibson may have given someone else the job of making machine heads for them and maybe at a higher build quality than they used to be. when mine was built in 91"

 

Here's a link to the exact issue mine had which is why I suggest checking out the tuners on both the Studio and Standard models:-

http://diystrat.blogspot.com/2009/01/gibson-deluxe-tuners-and-why-they-suck.html

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try out both see what you think

 

i am a les paul traditional player and yesterday went into guitar guitar in the uk to try a les paul studio 60's tribute with P-90's. I LOVED the P-90's but the chambering on that guitar ripped out its soul. Huge Difference must try both see what you think IMO

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It's really hard to predict what someone wants to be able to tell them what to buy, especially with the options regarding the LP.

 

If it helps, technically, the type called "studio" specifically means no binding. Other than that, there is no difference.

 

But, not all studios are the same. While some only compromise the binding to reduce the cost, some have a different finish, some have different top woods. (the same can be said about the other models as well). The point here, is that not ALL studios are the same in quality and price.

 

That said, ALL Gibsons seem to have similer qualities in build and feel that makes it a Gibby. And they are different guitar to guitar. It is entirely possible to play a lower end Gibby that plays and sounds as good as a high end model.

 

Just like there is no substitute for practice, there is no substitute for experience. If you can, going to shops and playing what they have to offer is an experience.

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The Gibson LP Studio is a big step above the Epiphone LP's, IMO.

 

Oops.

Didn't read the OP was thinking of either a Studio or a Epi standard LP.

Don't touch the Epi.

The sound is way different to a genuine Gibson IMO.

It's most likely pickup related though amongst other things.

 

As one of the other posters has mentioned about the variations in the Les Pauls regardless of model, it is something to look in to.

Mine for instance looks like a typical Ebony Les Paul with an Ebony fret board but it's a Lite model which has a Chromite center making it much lighter than a typical Les Paul.

There are also Les Pauls (standard and studio) which have been chambered since the guitars can be very heavy without any weight relief.

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I say don't rule out the Studio yet as you might end up prefering it. There are some VERY nice studio's out there and there's no shame in choosing a Studio over the more expensive models.

 

But still I suggest save up the money for at least a Traditional or Standard. Then try every guitar from the Standards right down to the Studio's.

 

Who knows, you might like the Studio more, but if not then you've got the cash to walk out that day with whatever you want.

 

On the other hand you could also keep an eye on the used market. For the same price or slightly higher than a studio you can get a used Standard.

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Epiphones are well made but edmittedly the electronics are muddy to my ears, I upgraded all mine with Gibson pickups & switchcraft and they sound MUCH better.

It has to be said at the very least Epiphones are a good base to upgrade from.

 

Back to the question, the finish will effect which you should buy a "Woodgrain" model that is just waxed usually a Studio will do the job however if you want it with any kind of colour & sunburst, the more you pay usually the better it looks...

Personally I fancy a Worn Brown Studio to completement my 08 standard.

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I've owned Epi Les Pauls. They are fine in terms of craftsmansship and

value for your money. I was fine with mine, until I went shopping for a

new amp and the Guitar Center Sales person gave me a Gibson VOS with 57's

in it to play. The VOS was out of my price range. But within 6 months,

I went back and bought a Std. Trad. Plus 50's neck and 57 classics. It's

not their top of the line. But it fit my wants and budget.

 

Neither a studio or Epi will feel like or sound like it. Different p/u's,

woods and builds. It's best to go play a bunch of them. You may actually be

fine with an Epi or Studio. It's all a personal preference and affordability

thing. You can always search for used too. Std. Trad. Pluses can be found

for $1,400 to $1,500 used now

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I had a studio that I bought in '98 (if I remember right) for $900 brand new, and it was an awesome guitar. Emerald green, Grovers, perfect neck, great feel, and most importantly, dead-on LP sound. I eventually traded it in on a vintage Fender bass because I was playing bass in a band at the time, but now I really, really wish I had kept it and just paid cash for the bass. So I can definitely recommend finding a good used studio from the late 90's. I think the studios have a simple sort of beauty, and provided you don't get a lemon, they're one of the best guitar values you can find.

I currently own a honeyburst 60's tribute studio and it's awesome. Great burst finish, great feel, great P90 sound, nice simple woody look. However, from what I've gathered, the quality can vary wildly between examples, so play before you pay whenever possible.

I guess my point is that in my experience a studio can give you all or more of the quality of a standard/custom/whatever without the visual frills if you get your hands on a good one.

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I just went and almost bought a Slash Epiphone and then compared it to a brand new Les Paul. The Slash was a previously bought but never played. Price was $750.00 so not a bottom of the Epiphone line but nothing compared with new Les Paul. Costs some more but really like comparing two different lines of guitars.

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All Gibson LPs are better than Epiphone's regular line of LP's. Don't let anybody tell you otherwise. A Studio with BB's or 57's will sound really close to the same as a Standard with BB's or 57's. But an Epiphone LP won't sound as good as a Gibson studio with the same pickups - unless you get lucky and get a great one. But the thing is, you'll never know whether you got a great one or a dud until you play a Gibson long enough to be able to tell the difference.

 

Whether you want a Studio or a Standard may depend as much on looks and "mojo" as anything. If you want to look good under the lights or if you like the looks and feel of a more finely finished instrument, then it might be worth the extra money to get a Standard. If you don't mind an instrument that's not as showy but just as good sounding, one of the studios might work.

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Got my first Gibson les paul studio yesterday, great sounding guitar! I traded my epiphone 1959 in and mim strat in for it. The gibby sounds bigger and better!!the tone woods make it sing.

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Got my first Gibson les paul studio yesterday, great sounding guitar! I traded my epiphone 1959 in and mim strat in for it. The gibby sounds bigger and better!!the tone woods make it sing.

I own a bonamassa 1959 it indeed is bright, but for me thats the appeal, I also appreciate my standard for its deeper MEATIER tones, but thats the difference between a BB2&3 verse a BB1&2 combo,

It seems a BB3 is designed from what I can tell to be clear and bright...

I also have some BB Pro's which are similiar in clarity but I get some nice extra crunch [biggrin]

 

But Congrats on getting your studio and I hope you enjoy it [thumbup]

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I'm not aware of any direct evidence that one USA production Gibson model is any better in build quality or standard of woods than any other model. It really is a case of looking at what specs on the various models are preferable to you and whether you prefer 'bling' over a raw, stripped down look. If you like the latter you're in luck because the cost savings from not having to apply multiple layers of lacquer and binding etc. are considerable.

 

One thing that has not been mentioned about the Studio model is that the cap is very slightly thinner and flatter than that of a Les Paul Standard/Traditional. However, the top is still contoured like a violin; in contrast to the completely flat top of a Les Paul Junior which has no cap. The changes resulting from having a thinner cap on the Studio also affects the appearance of the heel of the neck where it joins the body.

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...How is the quality of the Les Paul studio version compared to say a model a few hundred up the ladder.

Exactly the same.

 

...If you only had a limited budget would you grab the Les Paul studio or go with an Epiphone of the same price....

The Studio. Absolutely no doubt at all. Better electrics; better sound.

 

Really, all the Studio lacks when compared to the slightly more expensive models is, as guitarest said in post #18, 'Bling' - most noticeably body- and fret-board binding; and even if we accept that the (usually) mahogany cap of the Studio (as opposed to the maple used on the Trad and Standard models) makes the guitar sound a shade 'darker' - and assuming your ears can really tell the difference in a 'live-band' situation (and I'd be willing to bet 99.99% of the population couldn't) - a tweak of your amp's tone controls can usually compensate if a 'brighter' sound is desired. In any case, the Burstbuckers fitted to the Studio are generally a bit brighter than the 57 Classics found in the other two models, so that balances things up considerably.

 

It's mostly about appearances. There are a number of detail-differences, of course, but these really are all details. The Studio still sounds exactly like a Les Paul should. If anyone doubts this then can I just mention that the Studio models usually come with 490/498 p-ups and the mahogany cap - exactly the same as a Les Paul Custom....[wink]

 

P.

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and even if we accept that the (usually) mahogany cap of the Studio (as opposed to the maple used on the Trad and Standard models) makes the guitar sound a shade 'darker' - and assuming your ears can really tell the difference in a 'live-band' situation (and I'd be willing to bet 99.99% of the population couldn't) - a tweak of your amp's tone controls can usually compensate if a 'brighter' sound is desired. In any case, the Burstbuckers fitted to the Studio are generally a bit brighter than the 57 Classics found in the other two models, so that balances things up considerably.

 

It's mostly about appearances. There are a number of detail-differences, of course, but these really are all details. The Studio still sounds exactly like a Les Paul should. If anyone doubts this then can I just mention that the Studio models usually come with 490/498 p-ups and the mahogany cap - exactly the same as a Les Paul Custom....[wink]

 

P.

 

Not sure about LP Studios usually having mahogany tops. AFAIK they usually have maple caps with the exception of the previously available Vintage Mahogany model and the current Studio Pro Faded model. AFAIK, all other faded and full lacquer studios have come with maple caps.

 

 

Agree totally with what you're saying about the major part that the amp and tone control settings plays.

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Not sure about LP Studios usually having mahogany tops. AFAIK they usually have maple caps with the exception of the previously available Vintage Mahogany model and the current Studio Pro Faded model. AFAIK, all other faded and full lacquer studios have come with maple caps.

Yea, it depends on the model. My Fireburst is maple capped. IMO my Studio is more beautiful w/o the bling. Good solid guitar too. [biggrin]

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Not sure about LP Studios usually having mahogany tops. AFAIK they usually have maple caps with the exception of the previously available Vintage Mahogany model and the current Studio Pro Faded model. AFAIK, all other faded and full lacquer studios have come with maple caps.

 

Yea, it depends on the model. My Fireburst is maple capped. IMO my Studio is more beautiful w/o the bling. Good solid guitar too. [biggrin]

 

Thankyou, both, for giving me better info. I'll know better next time!

 

[smile]

 

P.

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