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Gibson Les Paul Studio

The arrival of the Gibson Les Paul Studio Electric Guitar in 1983 offered guitarists all the essential elements of a Les Paul Standard, including a carved top and humbucking pickups. Its simple yet elegant design quickly helped it become the most popular model in the Les Paul Series. Cutting-yet-rich tone'the hallmark of the Les Paul'pours out of the 490R and 498T...

Price: $186 to $997 at 11 stores
Searched Gibson Les Paul Studio in Reviews


A simple yet elegant workhorse featured

Sound My main amp setups are an Egnater Mod 50 with the Bassman and SL2 modules, and a Boogie Mark III. I mainly use Boogie and Marshall Cabs. I play metal and jazz styles. This guitar fits my style perfectly. I think the secret behind this guitar's tone are the 490R/ 498T pickups; they just sound excellent. I play equal parts dirty and clean and this guitar does great with both sounds. The neck pickup has the tendency to get a little 'jazzy' if that makes sense. It is a very very warm pickup which I love, but it might get a little muddy for some. The bridge pickup is just excellent for all types of rock and even metal. I prefer a warm distorted sound with a lot of mids, so this pickup is great for that. Both pickups are passive and medium output, and I think that makes a big difference as far as versatility. Now, you won't be getting a Strat sound out of this guitar at all, but this isn't a Strat. A Les Paul in my opinion has a very thick and unique sound and it is not for everyone, but it is definitely my sound. I think the Les Paul and Marshall combination is where this guitar shines the most; classic guitar tone all around. It works great with Boogies as well and it can sound modern. It is my go to guitar for almost everything I record. I have around 10 guitars, all nice, and this one sounds the best hands down.

Action, Fit, & Finish Ok, so I purchased this guitar used in 96' but I still want to comment in this section because there are some important points that I would like to make. I am not sure of the current state of Gibson and their quality control, but I have heard of them being very inconsistent in the last ten or so years. This guitar was made in 94' and they must have had a lot of good people working for them then. They did an excellent job on this guitar with no flaws whatsoever. Since I have been playing this guitar for literally thirteen years, I have grown very much accustom to how it feels and plays. I work on all my guitars and it is really easy to get this guy setup and playing great. I had the frets leveled about 8 months ago and the tech said it was one of the best sounding and playing Gibsons he had ever worked on. He said most of them come in with big issues straight from the factory. I got lucky with mine!

Reliability & Durability Man, this guitar can take some punishment. It has survived some scary collisions and even a brief fall down a couple of stairs. There are a lot of battle scars but everything is purely cosmetic. I am not really hard on my guitars, but I do like to dig-in when I play. I have gigged with this guitar without a backup many times with no problems, although gigging with a backup is a good idea because of possible string breakage. I have worn off some of the clear coat finish on the body of the guitar where my arm rests, but that is after 13 years of playing it, so it is not an issue at all. All in all, I would consider this guitar very reliable and very durable.

Customer Support Never had to deal with them.

Liked about it Excellent sound
Excellent playability
Classic looks

Didn't like These gripes are really not a concern for me, but may be to potential buyers:
Neck may be to fat for Ibanez players
No trem (but why would you want one on a Gibson? Buy an Ibanez for that!)
New Gibsons are not very consistent

Overall satisfaction:

By Severinsteelsmit
Nov 22, 2009
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Overrated Stereotype

Sound Before I start, I would like to say this is not a bias review, I tried and TRIED to get this guitar to what I wanted it for. This guitar was so pretty I just wanted to use it at least once for a gig.

Ok, One day, I was taking in my Epiphone Les Paul custom silverburst to trade in to buy another guitar but On transit to the music shop, the neck had Snapped. I was gutted, but we made an insurance claim, and it came through but they had stopped making silverbursts, SO they went one up and got me a Gibson Studio. I was ecstatic,I had a few goes on it, till the electronics bummed out on me.they just went thin and terrible. However I shall try and review it, to the week I had it before it died.

The neck pickup was fairly muddy on clean. Good for jazz, breaking up blues then on distortions it gives a thick lead tone. But it was still very muffled. On the bridge, the clean was alright, what you;d expect from the bridge, very gritty, then the distortions were again, alright. But not as good as I was expecting.

Action, Fit, & Finish When I got it, terrible. I got a guitar tech to set it all up and after that it was pretty average. The neck was sticky, and thick, Although the thickness didn't bother me too much but due to its thickness and its stickiness it felt like it was holding me back. The nitrocellulose finish was rough in some places and it was just insanely thick. However the one thing about this guitar was its maple top. It was BEAUTIFUL. Ive seen PRS and Suhr tops that didn't look even half as good. Its like the red maple danced right off the body, so I could HAD to get this guitar right. It was like quest. I spent HOURS messing with the guitar, editing the pole pieces, pickup heights to try and various other things, trying lots of different kinds of strings (Even my favorite super clear Dean Markley Blue Steels) and I just couldn't get it clean and clear with a tight bottom as I like it. so I left it for a few weeks till one day.....

Reliability & Durability The Electronics broke. I opened her up, couldn't figure out what it was, sent it to a tech and he said the pickups were dead. they had lost all tone and sounded insanely tinny and i was so fed up, I didn't want to replace the pickups with cheap ones, but I couldn't be bothered spending ?200 on top flight ones for it. So I've just left it up in my attic to rot.

Customer Support Never talked to them

Liked about it THE MAPLE TOP, it was beautiful
The Wine red colour was pretty too
Because its a Gibson, it makes people think your cool
The Smell! I know I mention smells a lot in my reviews but christ the case smelt like sugary maple syrup. It was Gorgeous!

Didn't like The sound wasn't for me
Terrible fret access
neck was too thick
the finish was too sticky
Too pricey ( I know I got it as a replacement but you have to admit, its a tad expensive for a bottom of the line guitar.)

At the end of the day, I can't help but feel that Gibson is dying. Its shady marketing (The reason why they price some of their guitar so high is to make YOU think they're better, just because they're more expensive) and its ploys to make you think they're revolutionary when actually, its either nothing new or a stolen idea from someone else (Like that Firebird with effects inside it, Tokai did that back in the 60s! And they were much better! Much Much better!)

In the end Gibson is relying on its USA made title, and the spew of lies it gives out.

So, to sum up, if you like a good Gibson sound and look, DON'T BUY the Gibsons, Buy a PRS, Parker, Ibanez LP Copy but if you REALLY want an amazing Les Paul, Buy a Tokai. Im serious, the Tokai Les Pauls are Perfect. Even ZZ Top started using Tokai, Hell even Slashes LP is not a Gibson!

For me this guitar doe sent even hit the radar compared to my Ibanez and Tokai guitars. If it had worked, and was reliable, perhaps for someone who does like an LP a 3. But compared to the copys it sucks. Hard.

Yours Happier without
Big The Cat

Overall satisfaction:

By Big The Cat
Dec 29, 2010
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