Looks great!Can't say enough good things about this guitar. Punches well above it's weight for the price paid, fit and finish are fantastic. Set-up from the factory is actually playable (needs nut slots adjusted and a basic setup like any other off the rack production guitar), and the pickups actually sound really good (with the caveat that the coil taps suck). I'm used to Epi's of the past that have had super hot, unusable pickups. These are different and sound fantastic. I'm an edge of breakup, low to moderate OD type of player and have no plans to change anything on the guitar. So far this guitar pairs great with a Barber Gain Changer.
I think these are some sort of special run in these colors (black, Inverness green, gold and wine red) for Musician's Friend/Guitar center. They have split coil hum buckers, a treble bleed circuit and say "Inspired by Gibson" on the label inside the f-hole. Musician's Friend had the inverness green on sale for $399 for yesterday's SDOTD, and Guitar Center has them on sale now for $499.99, and just marked down the red to $449.99. I was tempted to get the inverness green, but doesn't really suit my style and went for the gold. I bought mine online and picked it up in the store earlier today. Guy went to the back and brought out the guitar, unopened, new in the box. Took it out and made sure it looked good and played it next to a floor model they had in the same color. preferred the one I was handed in the box and went on my way. Been playing it all day. Intended on putting on some D'Addario EXL110's and giving it a proper set-up today, but that will have to wait because I've been having too much fun playing it.
I'll say it again...this guitar punches quite a bit above it's weight. Of course it may not be as refined as a Gibson, but it gets you most of the way there for a fraction of the price. I've been toying with the idea of getting a Gibson with humbuckers since regretfully selling off my SG's a few years ago to pay for grad school (was determined to graduate without any student loan debt). Was looking at several differnt SG's and a bunch of different Les Pauls (including an R8). Came to the conclusion that I really didn't want to shell out that kind of money for anything new, and used prices right now are just out of control, so I decided to give the Epiphone a shot. I have no regrets. This isn't the Epi's of years past where the f-holes are crude and the finish is thick and glopped on with crappy pickups and dental floss thin wire and switches that crap out a month later. The neck profile is full and the fretboard looks great. It's the perfect compliment to my Strats and Teles.
If you're on the fence about one of these I'd say just go for it.
i bought the inspired by gibson epi firebird,fully with the intention of immediatley putting new picups,and guitar harness in it. so far this firebird sounds so good,that im leaning towards no mods,but im still in the honey moon period. i have a couple nice,more expensive guitars,and the firebird is maybe my favorite?! im kinda still in denile,and confused. lol! ill eventually get it togethor,i hope!
im sorry if im too off topic for this forum,i just gave that some thought,duh! again,i apologize.i bought the inspired by gibson epi firebird,fully with the intention of immediatley putting new picups,and guitar harness in it. so far this firebird sounds so good,that im leaning towards no mods,but im still in the honey moon period. i have a couple nice,more expensive guitars,and the firebird is maybe my favorite?! im kinda still in denile,and confused. lol! ill eventually get it togethor,i hope!
My thoughts exactly and that's a good assessment of the Epi tuners.Update: I swapped out the stock Wilkinson tuners for a set of Kluson Deluxes. Saying it is a major improvement would be an understatement. I'm not one to be a tuner snob or replace stuff if there isn't a reason to, and have always kept th stock tuners on the Squier Classic Vibes and MIM guitars I've owned because they all worked as they should. These Wilkinson tuners are a differnt story. They're just pure garbage to be blunt. I found myself constantly having to tune the guitar, and forget about bending and playing pedal steel licks because the guitar just kept going flat. The g-string tuner was especially bad and the tuning peg itself was really sloppy and had a grinding feel to it.
The Tuners themselves were a direct drop in, but the shafts of the Klusons are bigger than the shafts on the Wilkinsons, so that meant I had to swap out the bushings (I was hoping I could just keep the Wilkinson bushings, but no dice). This meant I had to ream the holes a little to accommodate the Kluson bushings. After that it was just plug and play as the screw holes lined up perfectly.
Also bought a nice case which should arrive sometime this afternoon (some sort of brown covering with a pick interior and that pink cover that goes over the guitar just like the old Gibson cases used to have). All in all the is still a great guitar. $499 for the guitar, $150 for the case and $50 for the tuners and $15 for the reflector knobs, so I'm in it for $715, which is still a fantastic deal. The sound of the guitar is fantastic and it played even better after I set it up myself (relief, action, nut slots and intonation). Pickups are a bit hot, but not like the pickups many of us may be used to that came in Epiphones back in the day. I may experiment with adjusting the pickup heights at some point, but they really sound good the way they are and they definitely push the Deluxe Reverb into break-up much sooner than my guitars with single coils do.
This guitar would be a great compliment for someone who plays single coils most of the time but wants something different once in a while but doesn't want to spend a ton. You might have better luck than I did with the stock tuners, but even after replacing them it's still more than worth it, and I'm sure most of you can easily do it yourself.