Howdy, you may remember my review on the Epiphone Sheraton, a jazzy and bluesy black number, where I shared a little bit about Epiphone’s very Greek history. Well, today we have a similar beast as the Sheraton, but no history lesson, it’s Epiphone’s Dot ‘Super VS‘.
As with most of our reviews, first up a couple of vids…
For this first video, the guitar is plugged into a Ceriatone JTM45 and a Hiwatt 300W 2×12 speaker cab loaded with Fane speakers. Darren is also using a mid 90s USA ProCo Rat for the distortion.
Ahh, the Jazzy Class of the Epiphone Sheraton II EB. Finished in a beautiful glossy black, with awesome headstock inlays. This guitar looks just fantastic on a guitar stand, let alone how she performs when playing the thing!
Here we have a nice, slightly damaged 2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition, which was made at the Qingdao Plant (Epiphone) in China in June 2008.
First Up lets see and hear how she sounds through a Peavey Delta Blues amp.
Now let’s see how she goes through a Marshall JCM-800
Now for the pics….
Check out the Vintage style burst on the Maple cap. I read on the MyLesPaul forum that the Limited Edition is merely a limited run of a particular color. In any case the vintage orange burst with the typical Custom Gold hardware does look pretty sweet.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition
The quality of the Chinese Epiphones in my opinion doesn’t really come up against the Korean made Standards that I have had in the past, but there are some distinct features on this guitar that caught my attention, in particular the triple edge binding.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition binding
The Mother of Pearl block inlays look to be authentic, not plastic, embedded nicely into a dark rosewood fretboard. The fretwire looks to be medium jumbo.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition Mother of Pearl Inlays
The Gold Hardware and the Black plastic knobs and scratch plate really do look impressive with the Burst.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition Body and Neck
There is some slight aging on the Gold pickup covers.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition Pickup selector switct
Although it’s a gloss finish, it doesn’t seem to be a high gloss, the finish kinda looks somewhere between gloss and slightly matte.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition Finish
The headstock is typical for the Custom model, Mother of Pearl Custom Logo and Edge binding.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition Headstock
As I mentioned in the opening paragraph, the slight damage is to the binding on both the top and bottom, here are some pics. The lacquer, coating the binding on the top looks to have slightly DE-laminated.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition binding damage
Whereas the damage to the binding on the bottom seems to have happened from being dropped on the edge, causing the binding to be bent slightly. The damage doesn’t seem to affect the integrity of the structure of the guitar in any way. By that I mean the wood hasn’t spit, cracked or chipped.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition binding damage bottom
The neck is a nice slim-ish tapered neck and the wood grain in the back of the body comes through the finish nicely.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition back
It’s a relatively light weight Les Paul, easy to handle and it has a good balanced weight to it.
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition back of body
The Grover tuners on these Les Paul Customs are great, they feel really strong and sturdy and keep the guitar in tune for ages. In these next pics you can see the serial number and the Epiphone Limited Edition Custom Shop logo, along with the Inspection sticker from the factory in the U.S..
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition Grover tuners
2008 Epiphone Les Paul Custom Shop Limited Edition logo
All in all for a made in China instrument it’s a nice guitar, I’d say it would be best suited for a beginner or young student looking for something a bit better than a no-name knock-off, or a spare guitar that you wanted as a backup.
Taking good photo’s of guitars is one of the most important aspects of selling guitars online, no matter how good they sound or look in a Video, a good picture is definitely a must for any potential buyer to see the guitar with all of it’s perfections and imperfections.
But, I’ve always found it hard to take pics of guitars at home. I used to take them outside on the pavers under the patio, then the missus kept telling me….”You gotta put em on a cushion or blanket so they don’t get scratched…. blah, blah, blah,” which they never did btw. But the biggest problem I had was always the reflection, especially on black guitars, man those are killa for taking pics of.
I was always trying to avoid getting the background in the reflection, like the clothes line or the weeds in the garden or the kids toys which are always all over the place, it was just too hard.
So then I would try to take the photos inside, and boy that was even harder, there are so many reflections bouncing off a nice shiny black guitar it’s like taking a photo of a mirror, man you see everything, so that was no good, so I pretty much gave up trying. Whenever I thought of getting some pics of a guitar I was wanting to sell, I would always stress out over having to take pics of the guitars I wanted to publish on the site because it just took too damn long to get a decent shot.
So one day I had an epiphany, why not use the space above my office at work, if I got rid of all of the junk I have been storing for the last few years I could easily turn that space into a good little photography studio for my guitars.
Well here it is….
The video tour…
This shot is taken from the ground level looking at my office at work, notice the fluro lights hanging from the roof, I have five but one needs replacing, so I only have four set up at the moment. Just in case work place health and safety see this picture, the hand rails will be installed shortly.
The photo studio above my office
This next pic was taken from the top of the mezzanine, I should of wiped the dust off the back of the lights before taking this pic shouldn’t I? I was just so amped about getting it up and going I didn’t bother with the little details.
A close up of the lights and walls standing on top of the mezzanine
These next couple of shots is how the guitars should look, the Epiphone Custom Les Paul still needs a good clean but you get the idea, I think the lighting is perfect.
Top of the Epiphone Les Paul Custom
Close up of the Epiphone Les Paul Custom body
All in all I am extremely happy with the results so far, and the pics look pretty good considering they were taken with my iPhone.
Here is a slightly modified 2006 Epiphone Les Paul Custom, finished in Ebony (Black) with gold hardware, which, according to the www.guitardaterproject.org website, was made in China at Epiphones Qingdao Plant during June of 2006 with a production number of 1012.
Firstly, before we get stuck into the review and a look at the pics, lets try and sit through a really bad video…
Today I am looking at an almost mint condition 1999 Epiphone Les Paul Standard. This guitar was purchased from a guy who hadn’t played it for over three years, so when I pulled it out of the case, I wasn’t surprised to see the strings and screws were rusty, but what did surprise me was the guitar was still perfectly in tune.
Recently I managed to acquire an almost mint condition Epiphone Les Paul Classic. Unfortunately, I don’t have any video footage of this guitar and my camera skills aren’t too good for this photo shoot, so my very average pics will have to do. I tried a couple of different back grounds to get the best lighting, so the pics will vary depending on which ones turned out the best.
The guitar was in pretty good shape when I picked it up, apart from a few rusty screws it was in almost mint, un-played condition.
Boasting a vintage 50s ‘Clown Burst’ over a flamed maple veneer cap. With two black uncovered Gibson-designed Humbuckers, she certainly looks like a player. The Humbuckers are an open-coil design which use enamel-coated wire, alnico magnets and are double vacuum wax-dipped to minimise and feed back issues often associated with un-potted pickups.
The neck and fretboard are in perfect condition. Plenty of life on the frets, no signs of twisting and no fret buzz. It has a standard 24-3/4″ scale length neck with all the traditional Les Paul features, a super-fast 1960s slim-taper neck, trapezoid inlays in a Rosewood fretboard with vintage, tulip style tuners.
1999 Epiphone Les Paul Classic Fretboard
Going off the serial number, it was made in July 1999 at the Unsung Plant in Korea, with a Production Number of 0951, and as far as my research on these goes, there was only a limited run of 2000 made.
The Headstock had the cut corners, open book Epiphone shape with a ‘Gibson’ truss rod cover and the ‘Les Paul’ model branding.
1999 Epiphone Les Paul Classic Headstock
As mentioned earlier, the poly coating, as you would expect, has held up well. protecting that gorgeous Flamed Maple top. It doesn’t feel overly done like a lot of Fender finishes. The only cosmetic issue with the finish was a tiny scratch at the bottom that you can see at the bottom of the next pic, just above the binding.
The back was a nicely tinted see through cherry finish. Unfortunately I didn’t get a good pic of the back, so this next pic doesn’t really do it justice.
1999 Epiphone Les Paul Classic Back
Here is a pic of the Mahogany wood grain in the back of the body, although a little better than the previous pic, still not the best. The wood grain in the Mahogany body looks very nice coming through the tinted finish on the back, and as far as I can tell it looks to be a solid piece, if there is a join, it has been bookmatched extremely well.
So apart from some typical aging, a couple of very minor scratches and some yellowing of the cream binding around the neck and body, all in all, this axe is in mighty fine form for its age. Their is something really cool about these older Korean made Epi’s… Their beautifully carved veneer maple tops look a whole heap nicer than the current Epiphone Les Paul standards being sold at the moment and the workman ship is extremely good.