Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature
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Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature

Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature, LP-Shaped Guitar from Gibson in the Les Paul series.

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All user reviews for the Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature

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Average Score:4.8( 4.8/5 based on 4 reviews )
 3 reviews75 %
 1 user review25 %
Not satisfied with those reviews?
tjon90111/09/2011

tjon901's review"Broken in John Sykes model"

Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature
John Sykes is a guitar players guitar player. He isnt a loud guy who gets tons of attention. He isnt that real known. Everyone has heard his work though. He was one of the last guitars players in Thin Lizzy and he wrote much of Whitesnakes self titled album which turned Whitesnake into super stars although he was fired right after the album was completed. This is one of the 2 tribute models based on his guitar. The first model features his guitar in pristine condition. The 2nd model this one features his guitar how it looks now after life on the road for 30 years. This is probably the most extreme relicing you will ever find on a Gibson. The finish on the back of the guitar is completely gone to simulate 30 years of live gigs with studded heavy metal belts. Much of the finish on the back of the neck is gone as well. This relicing gives the guitar a nice worn in feel and makes it easier to play. Other than the relicing the specs are exactly the same as the other model. This guitar is basically a 70s Les Paul Custom with some John Sykes addons. This guitar has a mahogany body with a maple top. The neck is maple like a 70s Les Paul Custom. The guitar is black but all the hardware is silver or chrome. The pickups are not correct for the ideal Sykes sound. This guitar has Classic 57s which are nice but the Sykes sound from back in the day was done with a Dirty Fingers in the bridge, Gibsons hottest pickup from the 80s. I know Sykes uses the Classic 57's now but back in the day when he was rocking the world he had a Dirty Fingers in the bridge position. The controls are standard Gibson with a volume and tone for each pickup and a 3 way toggle on the upper bout.

UTILIZATION

With the reliced finish this guitar feels like you have been playing for 30 years. The back of the neck is nice and fast like the finish was removed since it pretty much is. The frets are big like Sykes likes them. This combined with the ebony fretboard means you have a really slick feel. The guitar is heavy like a Les Paul should be. There is no chambering here. This is solid mahogany with a maple neck 70s style. I wish they would have aged the wood under the relicing on the body. On the one I tested out the wood was pretty pale. I know on Sykes personal guitar the exposed wood on the back of the body is really dark probably from years of sweat.

SOUNDS

Even though these are not the ideal pickups for the true 80s John Sykes sound they are still very good pickups. They easily could have thrown in the same pickups you would get with a Les Paul Studio and called it a day. This guitar has a set of Classic 57s which gives more of a traditional Les Paul sound. The Dirty Fingers tone was a very hot 80s tone which Sykes is usually associated with. The tone from the Classic 57s is good but not very Sykesy. You get classic PAF tone with these pickups. The maple neck gives a slightly different tone as well. It is slightly brighter than a normal Les Paul which is part of the Sykes tone. The Brass nut is also a very interesting feature. I have always wondered why guitar makers use bone and plastic nuts in their guitars. In the 70s it was very popular to use steel or brass nuts and I see the logic in this since the frets are metal you would want your nut to be metal so your open notes sound the same as the fretted ones. I guess guitar makers are not as creative or daring as they were in the 70s. The brass nut on this guitar also helps get the bright Sykes 80s tone on the Les Paul. Plug this into an old Mesa MK amp and you have Sykes tone for days.

OVERALL OPINION

The price tag on this guitar puts it out of the reach of anyone but the most hardcore John Sykes fans. There cheaper copies of this guitar out if you dont need the relicing. You can get an Edwards copy of this guitar with hot Seymour Duncans for about 1000 USD. Price aside this guitar is a beast and is a very accurate copy of what John Sykes has played for nearly 30 years. You probably wont see a Gibson with this level of relicing ever again. If you are a hardcore John Sykes fan that has the funds this is the only guitar you will need.
Hatsubai09/19/2011

Hatsubai's review"The real Sykes guitar"

Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature
This is the "other" version of the John Sykes guitar. This has all the correct wear patterns on it, the correct pickups, and everything else that really makes this John Sykes' guitar. The guitar features a mahogany body with a maple top, a maple neck with an ebony fretboard, 22 frets, block inlays, binding, tune-o-matic bridge, two humbuckers, two volumes, two tones and a three way switch.

UTILIZATION

The ebony on this was jet black, and I absolutely love jet black ebony fretboards. They really stand out to me, for whatever reason. The fretwork was top notch, and there were no issues that I could find on this. It's hard to mention how the finish is considering how worn it was, but it looked to be about as accurate as possible by judging various pictures I found on the internet. The guitar had some decent weight to it, and a lot of that had to do with the maple neck that's put on these guitars. The maple neck is definitely a love/hate thing, and I happen to love them, although my back hates them.

SOUNDS

The guitar had the infamous Dirty Fingers pickups installed in it, and they roared like no tomorrow. For those who don't know, these are Gibson's hottest pickups, as far as I know. It's even hotter than the 500T, and it just crushes through the right amp. These seem to work best through some sort of modded Marshall or other higher mid amp, in my opinion. They work great in Mesa/Boogie Marks, too. I find them to be a bit much at times for Rectos, but once you boost the Recto, it starts to really sing. The neck is super powerful as well, and lead lines are a breeze. Cleans and dynamics suck, but nobody cares about those things anyway. :)

OVERALL OPINION

This is as close to Sykes' actual guitar as you can get. The wear pattern, the specs, the pickups, everything about this guitar is pretty much exactly what Sykes has on his own guitar. There are two major problems with this guitar, however. One is the RIDICULOUS price that Gibson charges for these things. The other is the fact that it's so beat up that the price kinda makes it not worth buying the aged version.
Hatsubai09/19/2011

Hatsubai's review"Sykes' sig guitar...kinda"

Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature
Gibson released a small, limited production "inspired by" John Sykes guitar. It has almost all the features of Sykes' actual guitar that he used throughout the years. I can't remember if this or the Edwards one came first. It just kinda struck me as odd that it took so long for Sykes to get his own signature guitar, and it's not even official. The guitar features a mahogany body with a maple top, a maple neck with an ebony fretboard, 22 frets, block inlays, binding, tune-o-matic bridge, two humbuckers, two volumes, two tones and a three way switch.

UTILIZATION

The guitar had some killer fretwork. The frets were perfectly level, and the ends were nicely rounded. The guitar didn't have a single flaw on it at all. I was able to get some super sick action on this without any issues at all. The guitar had a brass nut, and it was actually cut properly. I was fairly shocked that Gibson could cut a brass nut without any issues... and they actually did it twice (see my other distressed Sykes review). The guitar itself was a bit heavy, but a lot of that had to do with the maple neck that's on this thing. The maple neck is really what makes this guitar.

SOUNDS

The guitar had the famous Gibson Dirty Fingers pickups installed in these. For those who don't know, these are probably the hottest Gibson pickups that were ever made. They're crazy hot and fat sounding. The bridge was great with a boosted Marshall, and it was pure 80s tone for days. I know John Sykes is more known for this modded Marshall, almost Mesa sound (he did use a Mark III and Recto, after all), but it seemed to really sing through my own personal modded Marshall. The neck was super powerful as well, and those lead lines just absolutely jumped out. To be honest, I didn't even bother checking to see if the clean tone was any good because the high gain tone just killed.

OVERALL OPINION

I actually prefer this model over the worn one simply because there's so much wear on the worn models. The guitar is pretty much what John Sykes used, and it's nice to see Gibson honoring one of the best 80s guitarists to ever come out of that era. I hope Gibson can keep this kind of stuff up as time goes on.
tjon90109/04/2011

tjon901's review"John Sykes tribute"

Gibson Les Paul Custom - "Inspired by Series" - John Sykes Signature
John Sykes is one of my favorite guitar players. He isnt that well known but his work is well known. He was one of the last guitars players in Thin Lizzy and he wrote much of Whitesnakes self titled album which turned Whitesnake into super stars although he was fired right after the album was completed. This is a tribute to his guitar. Gibson put out two version of this guitar. There is a version that has a ton of wear on it to simulate how Sykes guitar looks now. This is the other version that does not have any wear on it. The worn ones are super expensive and rare. This guitar is basically a 70s Les Paul Custom with some John Sykes addons. This guitar has a mahogany body with a maple top. The neck is maple like a 70s Les Paul Custom. The guitar is black but all the hardware is silver or chrome. The pickups are not correct for the ideal Sykes sound. This guitar has Classic 57s which are nice but the Sykes sound from back in the day was done with a Dirty Fingers in the bridge, Gibsons hottest pickup.

UTILIZATION

This guitar plays very well like Sykes personal guitar. I has an ebony fretboard with really big frets like Sykes likes. You can get the action very low on this guitar because of the Gibson Plek process. The guitar has a nice heavy feel like an old Les Paul Custom as well. I dont think there is any weight relief on this guitar. The maple neck is something you dont get on Les Pauls anymore but it was common on the 70s. The maple neck sounds slightly different but the main thing about it is it was much stronger than the mahogany necks. The headstock angle Gibson uses with their guitars means they are prone to breaking and with mahogany being a pretty soft wood this makes them break a lot. The maple neck is much stronger and more stable.

SOUNDS

This guitar doesnt really have the true Sykes sound. John Sykes recently switched to these pickups in his personal guitar but the classic Sykes sound is a Gibson Dirty Fingers. This guitar has a set of Classic 57s which gives more of a traditional Les Paul sound. The Dirty Fingers tone was a very hot 80s tone which Sykes is usually associated with. The tone from the Classic 57s is good but not very Sykesy. You get classic PAF tone with these pickups. The maple neck gives a slightly different tone as well. It is slightly brighter than a normal Les Paul which is part of the Sykes tone. The brighter tone with the Classic 57s gives this guitar a unique sound. It is very oldschool but clear as well.

OVERALL OPINION

This guitar is great for any Sykes fan. He is a legendary guitar player for the people who know his work. He was one of the few people who stuck with the Les Paul throughout the 80s and was able to play popular music of the time on it. He is a real player. This tribute is nice. It is cool that they made a clean version and a reliced version. His guitar has a ton of wear on it so the reliced version may be too extreme for some people. These guitars are pretty expensive like you would expect from a Gibson Custom Shop model. If you cannot afford this Edwards makes a great Sykes tribute guitar that comes with Seymour Duncans. This gets you a little closer to the true Sykes tone and it is only about one thousand dollars so it is much cheaper than this. If you can afford this one by all means buy it. If you are a Sykes fan but do not have as much money the Edwards Sykes tribute is a good alternative.