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Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino

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Product Description:

The Elite series are instruments that approach custom shop perfection. Crafted with premium woods, fitted with American pickups and circuitry ” even American-made toggle switches and Grover tuners--they're made at a special factory devoted to their manufacture where they receive a high degree of hands-on luthier attention. You'll find the Elite 196...  Click To Read More About This Product

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Gear returned in mint condition. If you're looking for a virtually new instrument in possibly less-than-perfect packaging, this is a great value.
  • Includes 45-Day, No-Hassle Returns
  • Includes full manufacturer's warranty
Gear returned in great condition, with only minor signs of use, such as slight scuffs or pick marks. It looks and plays like new and may be considered an equivalent to display units found in retail stores.
  • Includes 45-Day, No-Hassle Returns
  • Includes full manufacturer's warranty
    Warranty Options
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Ship to Store: Available in: 3-7 Days (estimated)
Fairfax, VA
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The Elite series are instruments that approach custom shop perfection. Crafted with premium woods, fitted with American pickups and circuitry ” even American-made toggle switches and Grover tuners--they're made at a special factory devoted to their manufacture where they receive a high degree of hands-on luthier attention. You'll find the Elite 1965 Casino true to the original made famous by The Beatles. A finely crafted, great-sounding, and easy-playing instrument that beautifully blurs the line between Epiphone and Gibson. Includes hardshell case.


  • Body shape: Double cutaway
  • Body type: Hollow body
  • Body material: Laminated
  • Top wood: Maple 5-ply
  • Body wood: Maple 5-ply
  • Body finish: Gloss
  • Orientation: Right handed
  • Neck shape: '60s SlimTaper
  • Neck wood: Mahogany
  • Joint: Set-in
  • Scale length: 24.75"
  • Truss rod: Standard
  • Neck finish: Gloss
  • Material: Rosewood
  • Radius: 12"
  • Fret size: Medium jumbo
  • Number of frets: 22
  • Inlays: Parallelogram
  • Nut width: 1.64" (41.65mm)
  • Configuration: SS
  • Neck: P-90R
  • Middle: Not applicable
  • Bridge: P-90T
  • Brand: Gibson USA
  • Active or passive pickups: Passive
  • Series or parallel: Series
  • Piezo: No
  • Active EQ: No
  • Special electronics: None
  • Control layout: Volume 1, volume 2, tone 1, tone 2
  • Pickup switch: 3-way
  • Coil tap or split: No
  • Kill switch: No
  • Bridge type: Fixed
  • Bridge design: Tune-o-matic
  • Tailpiece: Trapeze
  • Tuning machines: Gotoh
  • Color: Nickel
  • Number of strings: 6-string
  • Special features: Pickups
  • Case: Hardshell case
  • Accessories: None
  • Country of origin: Japan
Pro Coverage

Guitar Center's Pro Coverage
Pro Coverage gives you added warranty protection for your gear. Stepping in where the manufacturer's "normal wear and tear" coverage ends, our Pro Coverage program offers you upgraded coverage if your product ever fails Click To Read More About This Product.

Pro Coverage includes
  • Accidental damage protection
  • Expedited repair or replacement
  • Free shipping (for returns or repairs)
  • 100% coverage for commercial use
  • Extended price protection
  • No lemon guarantee
  • Free transfer of coverage to a new owner
  • Repair costs covered for up to five years from date of purchase
  • Repair authorization-toll-free by phone or via the web
Customer Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
EpiphoneElitist 1965 Casino

(based on 11 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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Reviewed by 11 customers

Displaying reviews 1-11

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(171 of 174 customers found this review helpful)


Best guitar on the market. No joke.

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

Obviously, the Epiphone Elitist Casino is gorgeous, but I'm a guitar player, not a guitar collector, so I want a guitar that sounds as beautiful as it looks. This guitar definately fits that description. It has a warm versatile sound when plugged in, and a great acoustic sound as well. Also, the archtop design may be hard to adjust to for a few moments for those who are used to smaller bodied axes such as strats or les pauls, but you'll get used to it in no time. The neck is smooth and shaped perfectly! Surprisingly, the Casino Elitist is rather light for a guitar of its size. It's a 100% flawless instrument, and I recommend it to anyone and everyone.

(46 of 49 customers found this review helpful)


McCartney was right***

By Rick LeBlanc

from Swampscott MA

Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

I have twelve guitars. This is the guitar I'd take with me if I had to be alone on an Island. I play this all the time. The action, sound,comfort neck, stays tuned. Epipy did it right w/this guitar!For the price GC is selling it; It's a steal! Do yourself a favor go play an Elitist for your self.

(28 of 29 customers found this review helpful)


A true sleeper...THE stealth bomber in Hollowbodys

By Jay

from Orange County california

Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

Ok I was on the hunt for a hollowbody and had checked out all the various Gibsons, Gretschs and even a few old school Fender Wildwoods. I stumbled across one of these and took it into the acoustical room to see how it sounded. Simply amazing. Folks, this is a Gibson with a different name and HALF the cost and ALL the tone. People tend to look down on Epiphones for some reason. Their loss as far as I'm concerned. Several of my friends who have played it and are gigging semi-pros are as dazzled as I am with the tone this guitar provides as well as the sustain it generates. I run it thru a little Epi Hot Rod Jr 5watt, a Blues Jr and a Carvin BelAir. Each presents a different sonic picture, yet in each this guitar sounds incredible. Bottom line find one if you can! Sit down and let it play itself for you. Plugged or unplugged I for one do not think you'll be disappointed.

(7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)


Awesome, versatile guitar.

By GibbyGuy

from Carolina

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews


  • Fun To Play
  • Good Feel
  • Good Pick Up
  • Good Tone
  • Solid Electronics


    Best Uses

    • Jamming
    • Practicing

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    I own several guitars and I play this almost all the time. I have had it for several years so it has certainly stood the test of time. I am a Beatles, Stones, Who fan and this axe gives me everything I need. I play it through a Vox ac30 amd a Vox ToneLab EX stomp box. I can exactly replicate the classic Beatles Chime or Stones & Who growl. I lost an identical Elitist in a house fire and this was the FIRST item I replaced. The only thing I don't like is that I don't hace another one!

    (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)


    step it up gibson!

    By kouri p

    from nuevo,california

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    this guitar is just an absolute beauty, plays like a beauty too.epiphone is definitely starting to one up gibson. a guitar like this would cost a bunch from gibson. epiphone truly did it right on this guitar.

    (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)



    By Robert

    from Escindido Ca.

    Site Member

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    I had been looking at the Casino for a while but seen the Casino Elitist. I would like to thank Dwight Yoakam for sending me in the right direction. These Elitist Rock. Quality is just as good as made in USA. I bought the natural and now with the sale that there having I just bought me a new Sunburst. Just after I bought my first Elitist I had a chance to buy a China made Casino. The China made Casino isn't to bad but its no way compares to the Made in Japan Elitist Casino. The Elitist are worth every penny you pay for them .

    (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)


    Almost Awesome Axe

    By Jonathan Abramson

    from Beaverton, OR

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    Originally I ordered the John Lennon Casino. First one came with major fret buzz issues. Returned that for another. Same issues. Returned that, ponied up another grand(!) and got the Elitist. Immediately knew that this was a much more substantial guitar. The JL is made in China and feels flimsy and unfinished. The P90 pickups are not their top of the line version. The Elitist is made in Japan of much better materials and workmanship. The sunburst finish is gorgeous as are the neck inlays, and headstock tortoise shell Epiphone insignia. Speaking of the neck ... feels fast and nimble with a good solid heft to it ala Gibson guitars. BUT ... plan on spending another $125 or so to have a luthier set up the guitar for you. Again, the fret buzz issue. None of the new guitars I'm looking at - no matter what the make or price - are finished properly before shipping, e.g. dressing the frets, adjusting saddle angle. Case in point: when I dropped it by the luthier he had a brand new Martin 000-28($3500)in the shop for setting up. BTW the luthier is 70 years of age and certified repairman for all the major manufacturers. He tells me this is the norm these days rather than an occasional occurrence. That's a shame. Other than this fret issue the Elitist sounds fantastic whether it be the classic Beatles/Stones recordings circa '65 or the overdrive sound of urban blues. I'm very pleased with my choice. Can't wait to have it back in my hands!

    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)


    Like finding my way home


    from Long Island NY

    Site Member

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    Casino elitist. There were only two problems with this purchase ? the name ?elitist? just creeps me out and the cheesy little Epiphone emblem glued on to the pickguard (which was falling off when I got it). Other than that ? nicest guitar I have ever owned. The neck is amazing, the weight and the size are perfect. It came set up very well ? I have no complaints at all ? just praise. The finish is beautiful (I have the sunburst). If you can afford it, I really think it is worth it (get a rid of a few of your others guitars! That?s how I managed it). I have had Rivieras, Les Pauls, a gibson ES330 (from 1965 - another wonderful guitar and yet the epi feels better), a host of Fenders (still have one) but this is by far, my favorite. It?s a high quality item ? you can tell as soon as you take it out the case. I spent years messing around with lots of instruments looking for one that really just ?felt right?. A very expensive quest ? had I found this fifteen years ago I would have saved myself a lot of money. If they kept one in the store (GC) I would have played it, got a feel for the quality and bought one for sure ? for some reason I could not find one to try out. You had to buy it ? then if you didn?t like it, you could return it, but I think that?s a bit of a drag. All in all ? awesome guitar. Would buy another for sure.

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)



    By john ewing

    from Houston, TX

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    I have been playing around with the regular MIC/MIK Casinos for awhile and had generally liked them for what the were. Although none of the stores in my area had an elitist, the reviews were so positive that I decided to take a chance and order a used MIJ Elitist from a Guitar Center store out of state. I don't regret it at all, this is a totally different guitar. It's amazing! The fit and finish are as good as any guitar I have ever played, the neck is outstanding and the sound is incredible. If you want a Casino, buy an elitist....You will not be disappointed!!!

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


    Ultra-high Quality

    By Neal Gold

    from Baltimore, MD

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    For many years I've been trying to find a Gibson ES330 or 335 that wasn't either a down payment on a Porsche 911 or was showing its age. I got off my high horse and marched into [competitor's name] and tested an Epi Nick Valensi Riviera--VERY nice!--and a Casino Elitist--my oh my. I just re-racked the Valensi model and spent the next 30 mins treating myself to the jazzy-rocky smoothness of the Elitist; yes, I bought one. At the time of purchase I realized I had just satisfied that dream: The fit and finish are flawless, the playability is a breeze.

    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


    Build quality is superb! Tone to die for!

    By frank

    from Ormond By The Sea, FL

    Comments about Epiphone Elitist 1965 Casino:

    Just received mine from Winterpark, FL GC. Have played the early to mid 60s originals, and although I was a little skeptical to purchase, this guitar is fabulous. I've been playing guitar for 50 years now, and own over 20 including real vintage axes and amps. The build quality is, well, in my opinion, about as good as Gibson custom shop - which I have to compare to. It would have been nice that this model was produced with Nitro instead of Poly, but that's the way it is. Since this guitar is produced in Japan, they do not over-spray the poly to make it way to thick (as opposed to the Korea and China poly sprays where they spray way too thick.) Out of the box, the set-up was spot on. Action was accurate, and intonation was good too. I changed over to Ernie Ball regular slinkys and adjusted the neck 1/4 turn on the truss rod and set intonation with Peterson strobe tuner. Fret dressing on this Casino was excellent. Again, build quality is superb! Playability is outstanding. Neck is great (and actually straight). Played through 1964 Fender VibroVerb (with 15" speaker and Cesar Diaz mods), Vox AC30 and AC15TB, and Marshall Blues Breaker - tone is to die for. The difference between this model Casino and a regular Casino (Korea or China built) is very obvious. The OEM Gibson P90 pickups and Gibson hardware really do make a big difference. This Casino is a must for Beatles, early Stones, Kinks, (British Invasion era), etc. It is also very apparent why so many Jazz guys played the Casino too, and the early rockers. Nice to see younger players get a chance to get a hold of this great guitar. The Winterpark, FL GC staff was great (Thanks Mike and Ray!)

    Displaying reviews 1-11

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