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FDP Forum / Miscellaneous and Non-Fender Topics / Studio? Tribute? Please help me understand Gibson

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langford
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Toronto, Canada

Dec 10th, 2017 11:52 AM   Edit   Profile  

I've been jonesing for an LP Goldtop with P90s for some time now. I might even pull the trigger this year, if certain things work out. So, I've been trying to get a sense of what's out there. As a result, I'm stumbling over Gibson's "studio" v. "tribute" naming conventions. How are these guitars different from each other, and how are they different from "standards"?

Thanks!


archiestone
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El Californio

Dec 10th, 2017 11:58 AM   Edit   Profile  

Start here and...

Read!

archiestone
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El Californio

Dec 10th, 2017 12:02 PM   Edit   Profile  

I enjoyed this informative article which helped steer me toward an LP 'Traditional.' (Caution: Writer's conclusions should not be taken as gospel.)

5 best

Peegoo
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Roisin, I wanna

fight your father
Dec 10th, 2017 12:03 PM   Edit   Profile  

Generally, the studio line lacks binding on the body and neck, as well as pearl inlays. No figured maple tops on these. Some have dots instead of keystones on the fret board. Headstock logos are usually silk screen paint instead of inlays.

The tribute line is similar to the studios, but they have neck specs associated with the time frame they represent, e.g., 60s = thin neck, 50s = fat neck.

The faded series (now out of production, I think) is similar to the studio line, but with a thinner finish and a satin, grainy feel on the surface of the wood.

langford
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Toronto, Canada

Dec 10th, 2017 02:17 PM   Edit   Profile  

Many thanks, everybody. I get it now. Cheers!

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
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We all want

our time in hell
Dec 11th, 2017 02:50 AM   Edit   Profile  

Really given the changes of the last few years, I'd look up the specific model.

There's satin Ts on the low end, and most of the "cheaper" ones seem to be Ts.

There's oddball Studios will full mother-of-pearl and some with binding, etc.

My 339 Studio has neck binding but not body, and MOP dots...the '16 Studio HP has MOP inlays, but no binding..but a decent top on the wine red model, etc.

The '17 of the same model has neck binding too. And there's no '18 model, etc.


Peegoo
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Roisin, I wanna

fight your father
Dec 11th, 2017 04:52 AM   Edit   Profile  

Agreed, Rev. They've lost the bubble on features associated with several of their model lines over the past 15 years or so.

It's the same way with Juniors and Specials: the Junior was always a single-pickup slab body (LP SC, LP DC, and and SG shapes), and the Special was always a double pickup slab LP SC or DC and SG shapes. All were available with P90s or open coil humbuckers. Most had no binding anywhere, but a few oddballs sneaked out over the years with neck binding and other primo features.

Then they released the "Junior Special," which threw all the rules out the window.

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
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We all want

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Dec 11th, 2017 05:50 AM   Edit   Profile  

Yea, my '93ish LP Studio (back when there weren't 900 versions) I had for a while had neck binding. They flirt on and off with adding it and not over time (suppose it may be cheaper functionally to just do it on all necks for the purpose of having one production line).

That said, I don't care one way or the other. I don't buy the "cheap" Studios, as I've found my happy spot is on the midrange one or higher, and I want particular stuff.

Every LP I've ever loved has had the 490R/498T pickup combo, and they all sound radically different - but I love how they sound and react.

LHW

Southwest Florida

Alone in my principles
Dec 11th, 2017 08:05 AM   Edit   Profile  

My 2017 LP Tribute has the 490R/490T pickup combo. I like it a little more than the 490/498 combo. The bridge pickup doesn't seem quite as bright.

Leftee
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VA

Life makes a man tired.
Dec 11th, 2017 09:48 AM   Edit   Profile  

Re: Gibson pickups.

It’s all about the vintage output and unbalanced coils for me.

Actually, that’s my “home” for humbuckers in general.

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
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We all want

our time in hell
Dec 11th, 2017 10:06 AM   Edit   Profile  

I don't mind bright, and can dial it off with the tone knob if needed.

But I like a bit more bite than the average bear, it's either those or something along the lines of a Dirty Fingers in buckers for my happy place.

Leftee
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VA

Life makes a man tired.
Dec 11th, 2017 10:12 AM   Edit   Profile  

Very true. You can dial it out but you can’t add it if it isn’t there already.

langford
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Toronto, Canada

Dec 11th, 2017 02:42 PM   Edit   Profile  

@Rev and Peegoo... Since you mention specific models, I've long been jonesing for a LP with P90s (gold-top would be awesome). I may be able to swing a purchase this year if a couple of things pan out, so I've been having a look around at the what's out there... which is how I got bogged down in the nomenaclature.

FWIW. I'm also looking at well-regarded copies, such as the Tokais. If anybody has any thoughts on those, I'm all ears.

(This message was last edited by langford at 07:41 PM, Dec 11th, 2017)

LHW

Southwest Florida

Alone in my principles
Dec 11th, 2017 05:55 PM   Edit   Profile  

It's interesting you mention "dirty fingers", reverendrob. My other LP Tribute, a 2012 70's model, has the dirty fingers mini-HBs. I love the "dirty" sound they put out.

(This message was last edited by LHW at 07:57 PM, Dec 11th, 2017)

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
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We all want

our time in hell
Dec 11th, 2017 07:36 PM   Edit   Profile  

I don't have the minis, my 339 has the full-size.

As far as the Tokais, honestly, I've played a couple that were highly regarded by their owners, but they didn't jump out and scream "Let's pay Gibson prices for them", which is what they cost. Canada may be different pricing-wise, but the Tokais are MASSIVELY overpriced here IMO.

The big thing I can tell you is that there's always a clearance on the previous year or two-ago Gibson models every so often and prices are stupid good. See the various threads that pop up here from time to time, etc.

LHW

Southwest Florida

Alone in my principles
Dec 11th, 2017 09:10 PM   Edit   Profile  

I agree with you about clearance sales. I bought my 2012 Tribute new in 2015 for $599.

reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
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We all want

our time in hell
Dec 12th, 2017 04:26 AM   Edit   Profile  

Yea, the later ones get stupid good sometimes.

I have a tendency to look for the first or second round of stuff, when there's still a bit of choice in what's there.

But at the 2-3 year point, it hits blowout fast and if there's something you want it just can't be beat.

LHW

Southwest Florida

Alone in my principles
Dec 12th, 2017 11:31 AM   Edit   Profile  

Plus, it's a lefty. I am sure they couldn't unload it. There was actually three available, each in a different color. I have never had that experience!

Ayns
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UK

England's Sloppiest Guitarist
Dec 12th, 2017 03:39 PM   Edit   Profile  

I've got a 50's Studio Tribute and a Korean Tokai Gold Top. Both have P90's. The Tokai's a good guitar but I haven't gigged with it for at least 5 years (probably since I got the 50's Tribute).

I gig with the 50's Tribute regularly.


reverendrob
FDP Data Goon
Moderator

We all want

our time in hell
Dec 13th, 2017 04:26 PM   Edit   Profile  

Yea, keep in mind as well the Tokai's are grey market imports here, and cost as much a Gibson for some reason.

I've never even considered them because of that.

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FDP Forum / Miscellaneous and Non-Fender Topics / Studio? Tribute? Please help me understand Gibson




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