Epiphone Les Paul Standard PLUS-TOP PRO Electric Guitar Review

My first electric guitar was a very cheap, bargain-basement model made by a major manufacturer. While it was good to learn on, I wish I'd gone for a mid-range model that could have lasted me several years. The Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus-Top Pro electric guitar offers the winning combination of great playability and affordability.

Things to Consider When Buying an Electric Guitar

With multiple manufacturers and guitars for every budget, the electric guitar industry has something for virtually everyone. However, by carefully considering a few key elements, you can make your search easier and ensure that the guitar you purchase is well-suited to your needs. When buying a guitar, it's important to consider the following things:

  • Your budget
  • What tonewoods the guitar is made of
  • The electronics and their configuration
  • How playable the guitar is
  • If it comes with any accessories

The Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus-Top Pro Electric Guitar

To the uninitiated, it may be difficult to tell what sets this model apart from other editions of the Epiphone Les Paul. Epiphone is the budget line of Gibson guitars, and it offers a few versions of the classic Les Paul. This model has extra playability features not included on basic models, making it ideal for more advanced players or beginners who are willing to spend a little extra cash in order to get something they can grow into.

Pros

  • Two Epiphone pickups with push-pull coil tapping
  • High-quality mahogany body
  • Les Paul playability for a fraction of the price of a Gibson model

Cons

  • While it is a good guitar for the price, the sound isn't as high-quality as that of a Gibson
  • Some users have noted that the guitar needed a professional setup
  • Some buyers report quality issues

Features and Benefits

Now that I've gone over the basics, I'll go over some of the features of this guitar.

Electronics

Epiphone Les Paul Standard PLUS-TOP PRO Electric Guitar

This guitar comes equipped with two popular pickups - the Epiphone ProBucker 2 and ProBucker 3. These high-quality humbuckers are equipped with coil splitting, which allows you to recreate the sound of single-coil pickups if you would prefer. This splitting technology allows for a range of different sound combinations. 

Construction Materials

This guitar is a solidbody and is made out of mahogany, which creates a rich, deep tone. It features a rosewood fretboard and Grover tuning machines, which help it to stay easily in tune. The "plus top" refers to the attractive flamed maple veneer on the top of the guitar. Many of these guitars come in sunburst finishes, which enhance the look of the flamed maple. The locking bridge is especially convenient, as it prevents issues with intonation when changing strings.

Playability

As with the classic Les Pauls, this electric guitar is designed to be highly playable. The action is low without causing buzzing, switching between pickup configurations is easy, and the medium-jumbo frets make fingerings relatively easy. Plus, the above features like high-quality tuners help the guitar stay in tune and remain playable.

Ratings

Design

3

Performance

5

Construction

5

Value for the Money

5

User Satisfaction

5

Alternatives

While this is generally seen as a great choice of electric guitar, the careful buyer usually investigates alternatives. As such, I've found three comparable guitars to consider.

Epiphone Les Paul Custom Pro Electric Guitar

Epiphone Les Paul Custom Pro Electric Guitar

The Custom Pro offers a bit of a step above the Plus-Top Pro. Like the Plus-Top, it includes the popular ProBucker pickups, which are designed to mimic Gibson's original PAF ("patent applied for") humbuckers. This model features push-pull controls at each pickup so you can create a custom sound. If you want a slightly higher-end model, look at this one.

Comparison

Epiphone Les Paul Custom Pro

Price: $599.00

Materials: mahogany body with maple veneer top

Electronics: Epiphone ProBucker Pickups with push-pull switching at each pickup

Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus-Top Pro

Price: $509.10

Materials: mahogany body with flamed maple veneer top

Electronics: Epiphone ProBucker Pickups with push-pull switching

Epiphone Les Paul Standard Guitar 

Epiphone Les Paul Standard Guitar

While coil splitting technology is a unique feature, as a beginner who was short on cash, I would have been willing to sacrifice that for a bundle like this one. This package features an Epiphone Standard, which has fewer features, but it also includes an amp and cable, making it ready to play as soon as you get it. If you're ona budget and lookign for an all-in-one package, check this one out!

Comparison

Epiphone Les Paul Standard

Price: $506.94

Materials: mahogany body with maple veneer top

Electronics: Alnico Classic humbucker pickups

Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus-Top Pro

Price: $509.10

Materials: mahogany body with flamed maple veneer top

Electronics: Epiphone ProBucker Pickups with push-pull switching

Squier by Fender Affinity HSS Stratocaster

Squier by Fender Affinity HSS Stratocaster

If you want the tonal versatility of the Plus-Top Pro but don't want to spend the money for the coil splitting technology, the HSS (humbucker/single coil/single coil) Stratocaster offers a variety of pickup configurations. This guitar is also less expensive, making it a good choice for the beginner on a budget who still wants to experiment with sound. If that sounds like you, check this guitar out!

Comparison

Squier by Fender Affinity

Price: $200.58

Materials: alder body with maple neck

Electronics: Squier humbucker and single-coil pickups

Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus-Top Pro

Price: $509.10

Materials: mahogany body with flamed maple veneer top

Electronics: Epiphone ProBucker Pickups with push-pull switching

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, for the player who wants a little more guitar than a bargain-basement model but isn't able to shell out major cash for the highest-end models available, the Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus-Top Pro offers an excellent choice. Its combination of easy playability and advanced electronics gives new and experienced players alike plenty of room to grow. You can also check our best electric guitar guide we have in this blog for reference.

Stephanie Su
 

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