The Gibson 50th Anniversary 1963 ES-335 Historic Electric Guitar celebrates a guitar that helped create the best of the rock ‘n roll and blues music of the '60s and '70s. This special model, made enti... Read More
The Gibson 50th Anniversary 1963 ES-335 Historic Electric Guitar celebrates a guitar that helped create the best of the rock ‘n roll and blues music of the '60s and '70s. This special model, made entirely in Memphis, features gorgeous maple veneers and all lightweight materials for the centerblock and mahogany neck. Historic colored binding and block fingerboard inlays add familiar touches to this classic-looking instrument. BurstBucker 1 & 2 pickups with a period correct wiring harness and "Black Beauty" capacitors deliver the sound for which this guitar is famous. Kluson tuners and an ABR bridge with stop bar complete its list of vintage features. Includes case.
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I don?t think the last reviewer was talking about the same guitar, because there is no 50?s neck version of this. This is the 1963 50th Anniversary ES-335, and not the general production ?Block Neck?. Anyway, if you have been looking to buy a VINTAGE ES-335 from the golden era, but didn?t have that kind of scratch to spend, this is your chance! It really is something far different from modern production Gibson guitars. What is the big difference? The wood and the glue they used! And what does that equate to in terms of tone? The biggest growl and loudest (not gain?perceived volume) sound from what sounds like a real vintage golden era ES-335. Yes, it is that good. When I purchased mine, I couldn?t believe the sound coming from this guitar. It was everything I ever wanted from a vintage guitar. And I?m not alone. Everyone on the LPF who has one feels the same. It is as close as you are going to get for a recent build. Now down to details?The color and wood is exactly period correct. The neck shape is correct for that time period. The headstock is dead on correct. The ears are more like a late ?65, but close enough for me. The yellowed binding and lacquer on the headstock make this look like an old guitar. The VOS finish was never something I appreciated until I had this guitar. It really has an old vibe to the look to it. I like VOS on this guitar. The inlays are not exactly accurate to the old 60?s silverish inlays with the horizontal lines in them, but at least Gibson tried to get grayish in color with lots of swirls. If I can find the right material I will change them out. The bridge has nylon saddles that are not as white as true vintage saddles, but they sound right. I tried an ABR-1 with nickel plated brass saddles and it became too much like a Les Paul tone. That 335 tone was lost, so nylon saddles work for this model. The tuners are just fine (TonePros) with no slop at all. The doublering tips are a little off from the original 60?s Kluson color, but not that bad. Someday I will put original Kluson tuners on because I?m a bit AVH. The Burstbuckers are sort of ok, by my ThroBak pickups nail the early patent number pickup tone much better that any Burstbucker. The controls are not so good, as there is a sharp dropoff and no output below 1.5. The caps are ok, especially for the neck tone control, but for the bridge I used a Luxe Bumblebee. I changed my controls to Alpha and Bournes push pull pots and put treble bleed caps with pad resistors in the volume controls to bring back some treble and chirp on demand. I also changed the tone pots to push pull config so I can split the pickup coils. This just makes an already good guitar a more versatile great guitar (nice to have options). At least the controls are smaller and fit through the F hole much easier. These go down to 0.5 and it is smooth all the way. But building a harness that goes in without a hitch is key?and pulling the controls and jack up through the holes with fishing line is the way to go. I also used vintage correct pickup covers to come one step closer to the authentic vintage look. It looks right. So after a little work it is even better than the vintage guitar, but cost much less than a true ?63, ?64, ?65 with a 1 11/16ths nut width and stoptail. Get one of these before they stop the production and you are SOL. It really is something special and that good. You can finish off the minor stuff that will make it even better.
VOS and Nitrocel. finish and feel are spot on Pickups are Burstbucker with good tone/volume pots Nice chunky neck may not be historically correct but much to my liking! Case is period correct, not flashy, and no "Gibson Historic" logo stencil Very stealthy. Now the bad: Tuners are GARBAGE and NOT KLUSON (as advertised) They look like Kluson but on close inspection they are ???? Problem is that there is more play in these tuners than any guitar I have ever played in 50 years of playing! For nearly $4K...come on Gibson is already on thin icein my books! Told by the great Gibson rep that they will be replaced at no charge..but with 'what' and how much hassle remains to be seen. Stay tuned! Made in Memphis: Not sure if that is bad, but I was told that all ES-335s are being made in Memphis, now...so we shall see! Nitrocel over the nut? Small issue but Gibson may have a reason. Does not affect playability! Buy if you want a close to real vintage instrument at a fraction of the cost of the real '63 Skip if chunky 50's neck is not for you
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