New Epiphone Tony Iommi Signature SG vs Used Gibson SG

Discussion in 'Epiphone SG' started by GuitarGarrett, Apr 23, 2020.

?

Which one is preferable?

  1. New Epiphone Tony Iommi

    25.0%
  2. Used Gibson SG

    75.0%
  1. GuitarGarrett

    GuitarGarrett New Member

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    Hello fellow SG fans!

    I'm quite torn at the moment.
    I've been planning to buy a new Epiphone Iommi SG, but I recently discovered several used Gibson SGs on Reverb for about the same price range (~800)…

    What do ya'll think would be the best option?

    I'm sort of partial towards ebony fretboards, but I've seen some used Gibson SGs with this too!
     
  2. Beery Swine

    Beery Swine Active Member

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    I'm not gonna vote, because it really comes down to preference and what type of music you're going for. From what I hear, Iommi's pickups are high-gain and suited more for metal, while the pickups on the vast majority of Gibson SGs are gonna be more vintagey in their output and tone, so more geared towards classic rock, blues, and such.
    I WILL say that all the prices on anything Gibson used I've seen on reverb are absolutely insane. Gibson owners think they have guitars made of diamonds or some ****. Seriously, a PRS McCarty goes for $3,300 brand spakin new, but I paid $1,350 used for mine from 2004 a couple years ago. 41% of the price today AND it's a higher-quality build than a modern one imo. Even the headstock is higher quality, it's just one piece of wood for it and the neck, whereas the modern PRSes all have wings glued onto the headstock because they started with a narrower piece of wood. Meanwhile, I see 90s and early 00s Gibson SG Specials with gashes in them the size of the San Andreas listed for like $800-$1000, most of them without cases. Absolute madness.
     
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  3. GuitarGarrett

    GuitarGarrett New Member

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    Hey Thanks for your reply,

    I should’ve stated that the sound I’m going for is basically Black Sabbath. I’m not a huge metal head or anything like that, but I do love early metal like Sabbath, Dio, etc and that’s the sort of sound I’m going for, hence my initial interest in the TI model SG.
     
  4. WytchCrypt

    WytchCrypt Active Member

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    If you're looking for that early Sabbath sound you can't go wrong with the Epi Iommi SG. I love mine - it has the Gibson signature Iommi pickups and they're super hi-gain. Even with super light strings downtuned to C# like Tony's setup these pickups still scream. I'm currently playing a 10-52 set downtuned to B and this thing is a doom machine. As far as comparing it to the used Gibson SG's you're seeing at the same price, I've always been a firm believer that an Epi is a much better value than it's Gibson counterpart. Besides, if you really want the early Sabbath sound from those Gibson SG's you're seeing, you'd have to pay the same for the Gibson as a new Epi Iommi then you'd want to buy the Gibson Iommi signature pickups (which I believe retail for about $250 a piece if you can even find them) and swap them out so the cost wouldn't really be the same after all ;)
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2020
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  5. papagayo

    papagayo Well-Known Member

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    Ebony Gibson SG Special with Iommi humbuckers :thumb:

    The Epiphone look like the Gibson SG, not the same level.


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2020
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  6. pancake81

    pancake81 Well-Known Member

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    personally, this is what I would go for. Signature models are cool, especially if you are really into a band (I get it, trust me).

    But chances are you desire an instrument later that can cover a broader spectrum of sounds. Or, perhaps something that visually is not so dedicated to one band/artist.

    Tony never started off playing a signature model. He got all of his sounds out of standard models, modded to his needs.

    From what I understand, the epiphone TI model is top shelf, some regard it as the one of the best solid body pieces epiphone has released, quality/craftsmanship wise. And if you are in to that sound/look enough it might very well be a great choice for you. All I am saying, is try to look into the crystal ball a bit and determine what meets your needs today, as well as what will be an instrument that will still be enjoyed and desired long down the road.

    starting to sounds like an old man, I know.

    for god sakes, what ever you do, stay off of The Jaydee website. Your liable to walk straight into the bank and get a loan!

    The man, the legend, who makes guitars for the real legends.

    https://www.jaydeecustomguitars.co.uk/old_boy_standard.html

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

     
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  7. skelt101

    skelt101 Active Member

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    @GuitarGarrett, when you say early Black Sabbath sound, what are we talking about? Ozzy-era, early '80s Dio, etc.? For most of the Ozzy stuff, Iommi was using a modified SG Special with single coil pickups. For that, I would recommend one of the new Specials, a Classic, or something in that vein. For Dio and beyond, I would recommend the Epiphone signature or similar with humbuckers.
     
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  8. Norton

    Norton Well-Known Member

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    better? its kind of apples and bananas

    if you're deep into Iommi... the epiphone signature guitar is going to hit a lot of switches. Mostly visual... and hot pickups.

    Any modern Epiphone ought to be able to be set up to play as good as any other guitar. It might take a little more tweaking to get there straight from the factory.
    As in...a little fretwork, nut slotting and bridge slotting.

    but that's the same with a lot of production guitars.

    there are some differences in construction and materials from Gibson to epiphone... glues, finish, hardware, wood stock etc...neck profiles...

    How much those add up for you is only answerable by you.

    I've got two Gibson SG's and one epiphone. All 3 are very different within that same form. 2001 standard, 1990 reissiue and a rebuilt and heavily modified MIK faded.

    The standard gets the least play and use. If push came to shove I'd have to say that the epiphone is a better sounding guitar than the Gibson 62 reissue. but it's had it's neck off, repaired. re-glued, re-shaped, refinished and had everything but the tuners replaced.
     
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  9. Von Trapp

    Von Trapp Well-Known Member

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    Impossible for me to answer I'm afraid because a) depends on who's buying and why b) depends on how the specific guitars play, not in general, that specific guitar you're buying.

    You can get any guitar to sound Black Sabbath with some tweaking of the guitar and amp settings so in general I'd say If they both sound good, feel good and play good, get the one that makes you feel like a rock god and it will make you one.
     
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  10. WytchCrypt

    WytchCrypt Active Member

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    Of course if you really-really-really have to have the perfect replica of Tony's early Sabbath sound & feel, you can always shell out a cool $20,000+ on the new Gibson Custom Shop Iommi '64 Monkey, super limited edition (25 right and 25 left handed) signed and numbered by the man himself on the back of the headstock.

    It even comes with a replica of Tony's silver cross necklace...that alone must be worth $15K :dude:

    https://reverb.com/p/gibson-custom-...-handed-aged-signed-cherry-2020?hfid=33095485
     
  11. pancake81

    pancake81 Well-Known Member

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    Don’t even get us OCD folks started on how much is “incorrect” with that signature model.

    One would be way further ahead, both in instrument and pocket book, purchasing a Jaydee

     
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  12. WytchCrypt

    WytchCrypt Active Member

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    Just had a look at the JayDee website...prices are obviously insanely reasonable compared to the Gibson reissue and they're beautiful...of course you don't get the silver cross necklace but with the money you save, you could have one custom made in solid gold and still be way ahead :rofl:

    Now you have me curious...what's not authentic about the Gibson reissue? I watched the youtube on it and it seemed they went after the details - though I'll admit I'm no expert on the Monkey's mods...

     
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  13. Grizzlyman

    Grizzlyman Active Member

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    The main problem is that the pickups are not copies of what was in the monkey. They are humbuckers designed to look the same as the monkey, but the monkey had P90s. Gibson P90 in the bridge modded and epoxied by John Birch, and a custom John Birch pickup in the neck.
     
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