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Gibson Les Paul Firebrand
Overall Rating
Submitted: December 16th, 2017
by gary-K9pr0
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Sound Quality
Amazing, better than most high end LPs.
Reliability/Durability
Basic, solid.
Price/Value
cheap compared to higher spec'd Gibsons
General Comments
There are a few "Firebrand" models, including an SG. Your homework should show there are Walnut AND mahogany models. There are "LP" models AND "The Paul" models. Look here for "The Paul" and "The Paul Firebrand:"   [url]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibson_The_Paul[/url]I understand from that that "The Paul" came in walnut and mahogany.I have owned many Les Pauls: Standards, DeLuxe, Customs, 50's, 60's, 70's Juniors, and beyond.I was looking for a lighter guitar than my ES335 and found an LP Firebrand 1980 at a trusted store.This is the mahogany body version, (with mahogany neck with ebony board), black "speckled" natural finish and the, um, "firebrand" Gibson logo (not the gold, or pearl inlaid type, more like a rout).First up, some *facts.* These are budget models by virtue of: - no binding, no top/carve, no painted finish, and saving on the rout for the pickup selector, by mounting it in an awkward position behind the tailpiece, etc. There are small, but useful body contour shapings. Nicer than the sharp edged LPs and a bit more SG like.From here on, it all gets better: - the guitar has a proper set neck, is made from mahogany/ebony, has good pickups (mine has T-tops), good standard hardware (tuners, bridge, tailpiece). In many ways, its like a SC Junior (Special) with HBs rather than P90s. I love almost all Gibson Juniors.In the shop, I compared the sound and playability to many other higher spec'd guitars. I compared it to my own Gibsons.Here it gets better still. It is probably one of the best sounding LPs I have heard/played. It sings and sustains much better than the others I compared it to.It is lighter/thinner than a Standard. The timber finish feels nice, and glosses up with use. Nice to play.It is 17 year old wood. It is a real US made Gibson. It is much less expensive than a Standard, Custom, etc, but IMHO it sounds much better!The ebony board adds back a bit of brightness (perhaps much like a maple top/rosewood board combo).If you only want a Gibson based on looks, cosmetics, finishes, etc, this guitar is not for you.If you want pure tone and playability, reasonably light, nice contours, etc, check one out. It will probably be my new stage guitar.Again IMHO, a very underrated, affordable Les Paul. I disagree that it is not a worthwhile Les Paul, in fact, I may sell some of my higher spec Gibsons and keep this one.
Reviewer's Background
playing 50+ years, stage, bands, recoding, etc, owned masses of gear. Mainly rock.
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