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Rating and Reviews: Gibson Nighthawk 20th

Three different pickups, and the unique body shape of the Nighthawk make for a versatile and inspiring electric guitar.

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"An Amazing Gibson" submitted July 16, 2014

By Philip H in Los Angeles, CA
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Musical Background: Playing for 35 years
Music Style: Blues, Rock, Country
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Overall: I didn't know what to expect with this weird bird, but was blown away. I play Gibson SGs and Fenders (Telecaster and Strat), so I got the "hybrid" concept. It pays off, with the string tension/playability of the Fender scale with a Gibson 12" radius neck. The profile is a bit chunky but the neck is narrow, so overall it's fast and comfortable. Oh, Gibson site specs are/were wrong on the nut: it is 1 5/8. The string spacing is like a Mexi Fender. Setup on this guitar took me some time. They use a Strat like bridge but the relief angle on the neck is Les Paul-ish! Also, the bridge pickup needs to be cranked down or else you get lousy intonation and buzz on the low E. Once you dial it in, though, the guitar is a lot of fun to play. Fast, and with amazing versatility. I really like the mini-hum in the neck and (surprisingly), the hot single coil in the middle, which really "leads the band" in single coil playing. The bridge pickup design really works, with the angled form combining with alnico 2 and 5 magnets to provide nice defined lows, mids and highs. The coil splitting feature allows you to play a very wide range of styles and tones without switching guitars. No, it won't replace your Tele and Strat, but you can play "tele and strat" songs without embarassing yourself. Mine is really well made, and the wood and finish are stunning. The top has a dimensional effect, sort of like water when viewed at an angle. The binding is nice, and it was the last year of nibs. For wood and finish quality compare to LPs costing $2,500. This makes the Hawk a bit of a bargain. This guitar is not for everyone, but I'm surprised it's not more popular. It really has outstanding playability and tonal range. Also, the small size and light weight (7.2 lb) make it really fun for practicing long hours.
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"Love the Nighthawk!!" submitted October 13, 2013

By Michael R in Rochester, NY
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Musical Background: I'm a guitarist with 22 years of playing under my best.
Music Style: Rock, Blues, Classic Rock
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Overall: I own this 20th Anniversary Nighthawk and a 2011 Nighthawk too. Both of these guitars are incredible. The best part is the variety of tones the 20th has! It's truly an incredibly versatile guitar!
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"Gibson Nighthawk Custom 20th anniversay." submitted January 30, 2014

By Peter A in Ocala, FL
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Musical Background: Been playing Guitar for 43 years
Music Style: All kinds of music except hard core Jazz
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Overall: Thought I would like to have one again but was not happy with the workmanship at all. The AAA Maple was nowhere hear as nice as the original and the area around where the neck met the body was rough looking. My amp set-up is much different than what I used to have when I played the original. Pick-ups sounded very good, very versatile however, I had a buzz in every pick-up configuration but my other guitar had none. I just wasn't going "WOW" when I played it and it did not meet my needs or expectations. Kind of disappointed with Gibson.
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