Gibson Les Paul Standard Traditional Plus
You asked for it'you got it. Introducing the Les Paul Traditional from Gibson USA. With all the fat, sweet, snarling Les Paul tone that purists love, the Traditional plays, sounds, and weighs like the Les Pauls today's players grew up loving and lusting after. Taking design and visual cues from the Les Pauls of the '80s and '90s, the Les Paul Traditional starts with...
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Traditional looks, and HUGE tone
Les Paul's are traditionally known for their huge tone, and the Les Paul Traditional sticks to 'that' traditional sound. It's everything you would expect from Gibson's classic. Beautiful thick tones with a ton of sustain.
Playing the guitar acoustically I could instantly tell that this was a well-made guitar. Gibson are infamous for putting out some, quite frankly, ordinary guitars over the last several years, so it was nice to hear that this guitar wasn't one of them.
The guitar was nice and loud, with a warm tone, and great sustain. The only thing I noticed that was little funny sounding was a buzz. It turned out to be the bridge pickup vibrating a little. A little adjustment cured the guitar of that problem.
Plugging the Les Paul Traditional in to my Blackstar HT-5, I was greeted with a wonderful sound. The '57 Classic pickup set are fantastic pickups for the Traditional. They really make the guitar sing on so many levels. They sound nice and full, whilst still maintaining articulation.
One of the things that really impressed me with the '57 Classic set is how well they performed huge hard rock and metal tones. Being a fairly vintage style pickup I was expecting them to be great for clean, dirty classic and contemporary rock, but the tone I heard when I cranked my Blackstar HT-5's dirty channel right up was monstrous!
The Les Paul Traditional is one versatile guitar. It seems capable of any style of music that I cared to throw at it, and always begged for more. There was plenty of mojo about this guitar, and I knew that this is what a Les Paul should be all about.
|Action, Fit, & Finish ||
The Les Paul Traditional is a nicely put together guitar. Gibson have seen fit to have the guitars given the Plek treatment, and it shows. I would have preferred some lower action, but I think that Les Paul's can be a little harder to get lower action due to their design.
The intonation appeared to be right, and the fret work was quite nicely done, so the notes could really sing.
The stain and clear on the body and neck is absolutely gorgeous and vibrant. The maple has a subtle flame to it, and looks very nice with the glossy clear coat. It's a fairly even book match, but I would have liked it if the flame was a little more prominent. Others may prefer the subtle flame though, it's nothing to hold against the guitar.
There are a few minor niggles with the fit and finish though. I did notice a couple of ever so slight rough edges to the joins where the neck met the body. The bridge humbucker ring had a slight nick in it as well. The binding on the neck and body looked a little rough in a few places too.
|Reliability & Durability ||
The Les Paul Traditional is a nicely put together guitar. Other than the little niggles I brought up earlier, which aren't show stoppers, this guitar is one solidly built axe.
The only thing that really bugged me about the Traditional was the vintage Kluson tuners. I hate not being able to adjust the tension of the tuning key, and they don't hold tune as nicely as more modern designs. I would be upgrading them almost straight away with a nice modern locking tuner.
|Customer Support ||
I have not dealt with Gibson customer support.
|Liked about it ||
Full Gibson Les Paul tone.
* '57 Classic pickups create amazing tones.
* Versatile, capable of sounding fantastic in many genres of music.
|Didn't like ||
Vintage Kluson tuners are rubbish
* Could have preferred a more apparent flame maple top
* Fit and finish could have been a bit better considering the high price tag.
Feb 11, 2010
Last updated: February 14, 2010
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