Gibson Explorer Gothic

Gibson Explorer Gothic

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Explorer Gothic, V/XPL/FB Shaped Guitar from Gibson in the Explorer series.

6 user reviews
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Gibson Explorer Gothic tech. sheet

  • Manufacturer: Gibson
  • Model: Explorer Gothic
  • Series: Explorer
  • Category: V/XPL/FB Shaped Guitars
  • Added in our database on: 09/10/2002

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Gibson Explorer Gothic user reviews

Average Score:4.5( 4.5/5 based on 6 reviews )
 3 reviews50 %
 3 reviews50 %

MGR/daveb's review"Gibson Gothic Explorer"

Gibson Explorer Gothic
Color: Black. Very Black. Damn Black. No shiney black. Flat Black. It's black. Orville Gibson makes an ghostly appearance on the back of the neck. Like he's watching you fret. Finger board is ebony with a sun/moon at the 12th fret. Neck is 22 fret not clubby at all! Super smooth Gotoh tuners. Mahogany body with that coo coo crazy explorer body shape. Neck and body heal joint is solid and it's easy to access them upper frets while you get your inner Schenker on! Hardware is black! Pickups are the Alnico 490/500 and are toneful.

found this goth girl hanging by her neck way down in the basement at Piano's N Stuff, north of Pittsburgh. I paid $600.00 American dollars to take her home and abuse her. Sometimes she lays quietly under our bed...... in a case.......

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I like flat black finishes. Fun fact! Your oily skin will make the flat finish shiny. To reverse this mockery of justice, take some really, really fine steel wool and lightly buff it back to it's beautiful flat finish. Say it with me: 'Really, really fine steel wool'. It balances well when strapped around your neck and shoulder. Not heavy in the head. Can be played while in the sitting position. The tone is very rockin' but cleans up well too. It will never be mistaken for a Strat or an acoustic but that's not why you bought this rascal is it? The notes articulate like a Henry Rollins rant even in HIGH GAIN situations. And I like that people at gigs say things like 'Hey. Explorer' and other profound things like that in it's presence.

Could the case be any bigger and more cumbersome. I submit to you that, no, it could not! It's big. And cumbersome. Oh, and one time the lock on the case reset itself as if by magic. Lucky for me, my wife is good at picking locks. Don't judge me! Had to get on that internet thing to find out how to reset the lock....... once it was open. So when you get your Gibson case lock where you want it, I suggest that you slip a little bread wrapper twisty thing along the tumblers to keep it just where you want it. Or, call my wife to pick it.

Built just like a Gibson. Set neck! Great action. Good tone. Quality at every turn.

These are no longer in production. Great used find though. Sturdy ax for a rocker. You will feel strange playing 'Brown Eyed Girl' with it. Built for 'Living Dead Girl'

This review was originally published on

MGR/aaron's review"Epiphone Gothic Explorer"

Gibson Explorer Gothic
i decided it was about time i purchased me an electric guitar after playing a classical for 6 mths. i had always wanted an explorer so i thought i would go to the rock shop (new zealand) and get one. it was NZD$999.

its extreme shape is awesome, i have heard people say it is uncomfortable to play while sitting down but it seems allright.
its clean tone is good and its distorted sound is awesome.the 12th fret marked X11 also looks pretty cool.

it isnt as good as what some other guitars might be for solos up on the 21st, 22nd fret as the scoop out goes to about the 19th fret but it still does the job.

it is solidly constructed, not to heavy, not to light. it has a powerfull sound, i think it is ideal for any rythym guitarist.
people have sad its clean tone is not the best but it is really ok, if u want 2 hear an explorers clean sound listen to metallica's "one" or "the call of ktulu".
(obviously metallica's James Hetfield would use an explorer of higher quality, maybe gibson or esp) but the sound is still very similar.

i think this is a great guitar, like i say not as good as a gibson but it isnt to far away. the LTD explorer is the same price but i listened to them both and the epiphone sounds a bit better i must say. but it all comes down to presonal preference at the end of the day. (no rhyme intended).

This review was originally published on
MGR/Jerry Siczlak07/28/2002

MGR/Jerry Siczlak's review"Gibson Gothic Explorer"

Gibson Explorer Gothic
I purchased this guitar via an online music store, and paid 769.00 new with Gibson hardshell case. I purchased this guitar because of its killer looks, Gibson reputation (I also own a Les Paul) and design.

This guitar probably has the thickest sound of any produciton guitar on the market. Excellent tone, sustain, and playability. The neck is similar to that of a Les Paul, and the balance is perfect. It is advertised as "excellent for death metal and goth metal", and that is an understatement. The satin black finish is great, and probably resists scrathes and scuffs better than regular guitar finishes. The case is of the highest quality construction, and comes with a soft blanket that covers the instrument while in the case. Combination lock too.

The construction and quality are typical of a Gibson instrument... flawless.

If you are considering purchasing the gothic Explorer, it will be a great investment. Thick sound, great looks, fast neck and solid construction, this guitar sounds and plays as good as it looks.

This review was originally published on
King Loudness09/02/2011

King Loudness's review"None more black"

Gibson Explorer Gothic
The Gibson Goth Explorer was designed by Gibson about 15 years ago as a more "gothic" looking guitar to appeal to the metal crowd of the late nineties and early part of the 2000s. It features all the standard specs of an Explorer guitar but in a satin flat black finish and with black hardware, an ebony fretboard with only one inlay at the twelfth fret and a pair of uber hot Gibson 496R and 500T humbuckers. They were built in the USA plant along with the other Gibson guitars and the standard specs of mahogany body and neck, 22 frets, tune-o-matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece and the typical Explorer control layout are just like the famed '76 reissue.


The Explorer isn't the most ergonomic guitar on the planet in general due to the fact that its shape is a bit on the large and somewhat ungainly side and can be difficult for smaller players to deal with. Considering that the Goth model is the same as a '76 reissue shape wise, it's really no different in the ergonomics department. It retains a very similar medium range weight too. The upper fret access is decent on these guitars, but not nearly as good as some other Gibsons like the Flying V or SG.

Getting a good sound out of this guitar is decent if you're a hard rock or metal player. Due to the higher output pickups and general nature they have in conjunction with the mahogany body, I found that the best tones out of this particular guitar were through a high gain amplifier playing heavier rock and metal rhythms and some leads. The Goth doesn't quite have the definition and dynamics that I would like for clean and lower gain tones as much though they're not terrible by any means.


The Gibson Goth Explorer is a guitar that I figured would sound best for hard rock or metal stylings based on its looks and I certainly wasn't led down the wrong path. Though in all honesty the guitar isn't THAT dissimilar to a '76 reissue, I still find that cleaner and lower gain tones are not the strong suite of this guitar. The hotter Gibson pickups combined with the all mahogany construction and ebony fretboard give a brighter and more metallic sound than the regular model that is apt for tighter tones with high gain rigs. The neck pickup has great sustain that works well for lead work in the shred vein, and the bridge pickup is great for chugging rhythms as well as more staccato based lead work with lots of screaming harmonics and overtones.


All in all the Gibson Goth is a decent buy for someone who is looking for a Gibson Explorer that is just that extra bit "heavier." Though it's really not dissimilar to the regular '76 reissue aside from the ebony fretboard, it has a certain quality to it that makes it more ideal for the heavier stylings of the day. Given that that was Gibson's intent with the line, I'd say they did a great job. Gibson has since discontinued the Goth series but you can pick one up used on eBay for a decent price if you look around.

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Other names: explorergothic

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