Bought this guitar as a replacemnet for an ES 347 which was ripped off - although these guitars are not comparable - I wanted an archtop jazz guitar instead of another semi-acoustic. I paid 700 euro's including case.
The most distinguishing factors are: good clear jazz sound (not muddy like an ES 175's, the workmanship throughout and the neck is well-suited for someone with larger hands /long fingers.
Of course, compared to a Gibson L5, this guitar feels "cheaper" due to the woods / materials used - but that is not a fair comparison in view of the dramatic price difference.
The electronics (volume and tone controls are built into the pickguard in an awkward position). This means that if you move your picking hand around during playing you will bump into the volume control knob. This is not a well thought out design.
The pickup itself sounds fine but is prone to noise and interference - also depends on the amp you use. Best is a polytone type of amp or a Roland Cube 30 for example.
The guitar records very well in the studio and stands out well in the mix.
Construction and workmanship are fine - no flaws whatsoever - what we can expect from Korean made guitars these days.
A good budget archtop guitar, fine playability and a clear, warm jazz tone. The only thing I replaced is the floating bridge; I put on an ebony bridge to further improve tone. If you can live with the "misplaced" tone controls, it's a fine instrument if you don't want to pay a small fortunate for a Gibson L5.
I bought this guitar as a scratch and dent model online from Musicians Friend. I paid $539 plus $85 for a case.
I had owned an Epiphone Blues Zephyr Deluxe for about a month (bought online also from Musicians Friend). I was so impressed by the service, setup, quality, feel and playability of the Zephyr Blues Deluxe that I wished I had the same guitar with no pickup or a floating pickup. I then became aware of the Emperor Regent as the same guitar with a spruce top, slightly different and more authentic Epiphone classic inlays and a floating mini humbucker. I found the Emperor Regent to be a much lighter, brighter and better guitar for backup to my vocals. It has a very 50's, swing, big band jazz chunk plugged in. Unplugged it is significantly louder than the triple pick up Zephyr Blues Deluxe and feels and sounds very different, in a good way.
The action is a little higher than the Zephyr and limits any soloing high on the neck (although this kind of work is not my forte, anyway). I have never owned an archtop before and my only unplugged experience was playing a Detroit radio station band members 1953 D'Angelico. That singing sound and volume spoiled me for any archtop I touched in the years since. This Epiphone is wonderful plugged in with just enough amp to add bass and volume without getting in the way of the acoustic swish. Unplugged it is clean and pleasant and a lot of guitar for the money, but certainly short of the great archtops that would cost 4 to 10 times as much.
This guitar's finish and fit is flawless. It is even more perfect than the Blues Deluxe, and that is saying something. The only scratch and dent attribute I discovered was a significant one. The neck is separated from the fretboard by about 1/32 of an inch just below the nut for a couple of inches. It looks like someone (maybe during setup in Nashville) cranked the trussrod adjustment a tad too much and caused a hairline crack. This has been repaired by placing a cloth looking spacer under the bridge to compensate and make the neck straight. The playability and intonation do not appear to be affected in any way. I got a couple hundred dollars off for this defect but, if I had known of the nature of the defect, as opposed to a finish blemish, I probably would have opted to pay the extra 200 dollars so that I wouldn't have to worry about adjusting the neck if need be in the future. Based on my experience with this imperfection, an unblemished unit is probably the best archtop guitar for the money anywhere right now.
I own six guitars and it's this Emperor Regent I grab first when I feel like playing, especially if I am singing. It feels like I have been playing it 40 years already.
A guitar as beautiful as any, made in Korea, finished jewelry. Its micro float gives a warm, very jazz. The handle is very comfortable and soft. A feast of instrument, well balanced that achieves the levels of its big sisters, although more expensive. If you come across, try it as good as others in its class.
Channel pleasant and well balanced instrument
Well suited to blues and jazz, I play on a V-ampire/behringer.
I use it for four months, after having tried several other (same). Very good value for money, even better on some Cyberstore. If it again, I would do the same purchase, but .... earlier.