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Difference Between Gibson and Epiphone

electric_guitarGibson vs Epiphone

Nowadays, guitars are very in-demand musical instruments. These devices are used in a variety of ensembles to create one harmonious musical sound, or they can be used as a solo instrument. Nevertheless, guitars come in various types or brands, as well as many colors. Two guitar names are constantly being hunted by buyers. These are the Gibson and the Epiphone.

To make things clear, there is an existing Gibson Company that makes the actual gibson guitars, and there is an Epiphone Company that manufactures epiphone guitars. These types of guitars are not limited to their original manufacturers, because they can also be made by other equipment manufacturers, like Samick and Yamaha.

Nevertheless, most guitarists agree, that the Gibson guitar is practically the better guitar type, because it makes use of finer woods, good pickups, and just the right hardware. The Gibson is often dubbed as the guitar of choice. The combination of these features make the Gibson produce a remarkable dark tone, or sound quality, especially if these electric guitars are connected to an amplifier. All guitarists can immediately distinguish that the Gibson sound is truly exceptional. Overall, this guitar has become a status symbol. To own one, would mean that you have style, class and the money to buy such an expensive instrument.

On the contrary, epiphones are generally made in countries outside of the United States. A good example is the ephiphone industry in Korea, where the cost of operations is low, and the overall selling price of the guitar becomes relatively cheaper. As mentioned, Gibson make use of better woods for their guitars, but the epiphones are usually made of low-class wood. These woods either possess poor resonance, or have inferior aesthetics, not to mention they produce a lighter musical tone. Most epiphones are also created with thin maple tops, as opposed to their Gibson counterpart, that has thick slabs as the guitar’s top.

1. Gibson guitars are practically manufactured in the US, while epiphones are made outside of the US, or overseas.

2. Gibsons are more expensive than epiphones.

3. Gibsons produce better sound because they are made of the best types of woods, whereas epiphones are almost always mediocre in sound quality when placed side by side with the Gibson class. This doesn’t mean that the latter is a really a hopeless guitar, for it can be good in a practical sense, considering its lower cost.

4. Gibsons use thick slabs for their tops, whereas epihpones use very thin veneer tops, usually made of maple.

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  1. What a load of rubbish this article is. Epiphone vs Gibson. Firstly, Gibson owns Epiphone. This article states (or implies) that they are different companies. Originally, Epiphone was a separate company but is now owned by Gibson.

    Epiphone has ALWAYS manufactured very good quality instruments. Epiphone started manufacturing in the USA in 1873 (as I recall) so have been around for quite some time.

    Gibson has made Epiphone the manufacturer of “entry level” for want of a better description, guitars. However…..Epiphone make excellent quality instruments which compete successfully for quality of manufacture and quality of sound compared to Gibson.

    Some Epiphone guitars (usually top end) have “genuine” Gibson parts especially pickups and electronics.

    This statement “All guitarists can immediately distinguish that the Gibson sound is truly exceptional.” is extremely misleading and is completely untrue. In fact, Gibson has enormous quality issues and in a great deal of cases it is extremely difficult to distinguish the difference in sound between the two brands. Obviously, this is more true for some models than others. e.g. the Epiphone Dot which is similar to the Gibson 335 can and does sound almost identical to a 335. In fact, the Korean made Epiphone Dot from the mid to late nineties are, in my opinion, sometimes much better than a new 335 in both sound quality and manufacture quality.

    “Gibsons produce better sound because they are made of the best types of woods, whereas epiphones are almost always mediocre in sound quality when placed side by side with the Gibson class” RUBBISH. Again, as an example, the Epiphone Dot is made exactly the same as the Gibson 335 except the neck material which is Maple for Epiphone and Mahogony for Gibson 335. Can any guitarist tell the difference (blindfolded) between the tones of the two necks made of different woods? I think not.

    Overall, this article is completely misleading. Suffice to say that Epiphone build a very nice instrument at an entry level price which can and does rival their parent company product in both quality of build and sound.

    Epiphone is by far the better VALUE instrument. Gibson has a logo for which some people pay thousands of dollars and therefore is the more EXPENSIVE instrument.

  2. Hi, great article.
    I own 4 Gibsons, a Les Paul, U2, SG and a nighthawk.
    I can tell you that there is a world of diffrence between a Gibson and an Ephiphone in sound, quality, comfort, feel and playablitlity.
    It is a pet HATE ofmany Gibson owners when people buy Ephiphones and then run around and
    claim they own a Gibson.

    Very well written article.

    • Why do they care so much? Their whole identity being challenged?

    • Ha! You sound a lot like a Harley rider that don’t like to be seen associating with someone that owns a “Riceburner” cause your low self esteem can’t handle images of being less than Superman! Get a life!

  3. Hello,i have 10 guitars Gibson and epiphone.,to the point my Gibson lp.is very nice.,however for the 450.00 I spent on my other epis.,I can tell you for the money,that they are absolutely fantastic!!,I’ve play them for hours with no flaw,and no retune.,for the money I’ve spent .,epiphones are awesome!!,you don’t have to spend a thousand dollars to get quality sound !!….

  4. I know this is an old article but if I may add my 2 cents I agree with Tony. I have owned 4 Epiphone Les Paul’s. I have NEVER had an issue with quality, sound, strings staying in tune. etc. Granted I don’t gig, I just play for my own pleasure, but I would say that, playing in the style of Cream era Clapton, I put these guitars through their paces. I’ve never tossed one down in disgust over the tone.

    Now, Epiphone SG’s are another story. In my experience anyway. There is a discernible difference in tone and sound quality between them and Gibson SG’s.

  5. I own several Gibsons and several Epiphones, in addition to many other brands of guitars.

    A stock Epiphone is 80% of the Gibson but only 20% of the price, so it’s 4 times as good a value.

    I’ve upgraded my Epi LP Standard Plustop Pro with better than Gibson quality Seymour Duncan pickups, better pots, caps and wiring than come in modern Gibsons.

    It’s $650 of investment for a guitar that sounds and plays better than my $2,500 Gibson Standard.

    Last thing, the guitar in the picture at the top of the article is neither a Gibson nor an Epiphone, but a Hamer.

    If you can’t get the picture right, how could we expect you to get the content right?

  6. whoever wrote this , does not play guitar…

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