This model has the relatively rare feature of being a double-cut model (hence the DC faded name). It has 22 frets and the double cutaway really gives great access to the extreme upper register which is incredibly useful for lead guitar playing. I’d say it is even better than my G&L which has the traditional Strat “horn” but is thick where the neck is bolted on, which makes it harder to fit the thumb comfortably behind your fingers when fretting high notes. It also features a Standard Gibson tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar tailpiece, although these are probably made of cheaper metal than a regular Gibson. I’ve read that many guitarists swap the bridge for higher quality bridges but it does a fine job for me and I haven’t felt the need to change the hardware.
The Gibson Les Paul classic is slightly lighter and niftier that its counterparts, and ideal for those marathon recording sessions like the one here at http://www.recordingstudiolondon.co.uk
This guitar is basically a solid slab of mahogany. Mahogany body and set neck with a mahogany fretboard. One interesting design aspect is that the pickup selector is not on top of the fretboard like most Les Paul’s, it is close to the volume knobs. A traditional Strat player like me will like this although there is the risk of knocking it out of the “rhythm” position when playing very aggressively with your picking hand. Another interesting thing about this feature is that there is only one, lower cavity in which all the electronics are placed, unlike the usual Les Pauls that have an extra route for the pickup selector which makes the body feel like one solid piece of wood. Perhaps this affects the great resonant Acoustic tone this guitar has when played unamplified. Also, this guitar is light as a feather and feels much nicer to shlep around on a stage for 3 hours than traditional Les Pauls. It’s body feels small and incredibly comfortable to handle.
The neck is relatively thin, has a great profile and the fretwork is perfect. One slightly annoying feature is that the neck is very flexible and even slight pressure will cause the tuning to change. This is handy for a whammy bar-like effect but just to put it into perspective, if you lay the guitar flat on a table, the (light) weight of the guitar on the angled head is enough to make the tuning go down a solid quarter tone if not more.
The two stock Gibson P90 pickups were the main attraction for me when I bought this guitar. I was expecting to get some real twangy transparent tone, which I did get but I got a whole lot more! (read below). The pickups are controled by a traditional 3-way Switch and feature two pairs of independent volume and tone knobs.
My guitar is the TV yellow model which is really charming in my opinion. It is called TV yellow because apparently Gibson figured that yellow was the color that would look the best when the guitar would be broadcast on black and white television. I personally could have done without the whole faded gimmick, the guitar’s finish is not glossy and will chip and wear off really easily, causing the guitar to “relic” which can be real appealing to some people I guess. I’m pretty careful with my guitars and it is already starting to wear a bit in its first year of ownership (even though I bought it second hand). It’s not a make or break feature for me, but if I could have chosen, I would have prefered a matte but durable finish.
The “vintage” style stock “Gibson deluxe” button tuners are nothing to write home about. I find they are too sensitive and only very slight turns cause important variations in tuning which took some getting used to for me. Also, the buttons would be nicer if they were ivoroid but instead they are cheapish looking off white plastic. They however compliment nicely the Vintage look of the guitar but I think that changing them would make this guitar absolutely perfect.
This guitar traditionally came with a cheapo Gibson USA gigbag but mine came with a rather nice SKB hardcase, which made the 750 price tag even more enticing.
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