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Rating and Reviews: Epiphone 1958 Korina Flying V

Crafted from a korina wood body just like the original Flying Vs, this Epiphone delivers classic looks and tone with gold hardware and alnico humbuckers.

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The Wow Factor
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"Wow... This Is One Awesome Axe!" submitted March 3, 2018

By Mark Garner in Covington , LA
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Musical Background: Former semi-pro now a stay-at-home jammer.
Music Style: Rock, especially British rock from mid 1960's to early 70's. Beatles, Yardbirds/Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Jimi...
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Overall: (This review is for the current limited edition model that is exclusive to Zzounds & AMS.) I do a ton of research before buying a guitar. I want to read as much information and as many opinions as I can find. I read a posting on a gearhead forum where a person quotes a reply he received from Gibson USA regarding this model. In summary it stated the original mass-production run of this guitar (1998-2011), and distinguished by the white pick guard, featured an alder body with a Korina (African Limba) veneer on the front and back with a mahogany neck. The limited edition model, distinguished by a black pickguard, is made entirely of Korina with the body being made of multiple pieces with a veneer of a more attractive grade of Korina on the top and bottom. I found several photos of raw African Limba online and the grains were consistent with the grain on the sides of my V. So, if you want a V that is 100% Korina, then YOU WANT THIS GUITAR. The body is as light as a feather - the lightest electric guitar I have ever played. The strings are "through the body" and the sustain is magnificent. There is a rosewood binding on the fretboard so there are no sharp edges with which to contend. The neck plays and feels great. (It's advertised as a "slim taper" but it's a bit chunky.) The intonation was perfect on 5 of the 6 strings, the other required only the slightest adjustment. I had to lower the strings a bit but that's always the case with a guitar built overseas. The tuners are period correct and work fine - smooth and tight. The rest of the hardware is good, no complaints here. I found the 'Epiphone Alnico Classic' neck pickup to have a nice smooth quality that sings when you crank the distortion. I wasn't really impressed with the 'Classic Plus' bridge pickup so I'll eventually rip it out and install a Seymour Duncan 'Phat Cat' P-90. (In the middle position, my preferred setting, the "clankiness" of the bridge pickup is softened by the neck pickup.) My only real complaint is with the positioning of the front strap button. It puts the guitar in an awkward position and makes it difficult, at least to me, to reach the upper frets. When I installed strap locks - a necessity on this True Beauty - I moved the button to the back by the heel and the improvement was immediately noticeable. There is a little bit of neck dive on this model but I use a suede backed strap which helps greatly in this regard. I almost bought this model several times over the years and I'm glad now that I didn't. An alder bodied V with Korina veneers isn't a Korina V. This limited edition model is close as you can get to a 1958 V without dropping $4,000+ for a reissue or $400,000+ for an original. (It's almost half the price of the recently released Joe Bonamassa "Amos" model). Remember that this guitar is a Limited Edition. GET IT WHILE YOU CAN. Oh wait, I forgot to mention something; the "Wow Factor". This guitar is VERY PRETTY (& SERIOUSLY COOL LOOKING, too).
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"One of the New ones" submitted November 28, 2016

By jason t in chesapeake, VA
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Musical Background: guitar, banjo, uke, drums, sax....30 years
Music Style: Used to play metal... last 15 years more rock and blues.... fun happy stuff.
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Overall: Most of the reviews on here were for the last release of this guitar and were several years old.... I received my 2016 edition today and here are some thoughts..... It's gorgeous!!!! I've always liked Epiphone archtops and hollow bodies, and this guitar is right there with the fit and finish.... everything is perfect, frets are properly dressed, no sharp edges... absolutely beautiful. Playable right out of the box, though I did lower the strings a bit. It was intune and perfect intonated right out of the box. Of course I'll put real strings on it soon, but the out of the box performance was impressive. The sound was ok.... the pickups were snappier than I thought.... but with those cleartone strings what could one expect? Playability was perfect... low action, zero buzz... I love the fat neck. This guitar is a kick in the pants to play. It needs straplocks. The leg-rest rubber piece is a welcome addition. I love this thing and would buy another.
35 of 36 people (97.22%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Epiphone 1958 Korina Flying V Guitar" submitted February 18, 2017

By Tony Hines in Ofallon, MO
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Musical Background: Been playing guitar for 40 years, Gig regularly, classic rock, weekend warrior !
Music Style: Classic rock, blues,
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Overall: This guitar is beautiful, plays great right out of the box. I am really impressed. The pickups aren't great, but i did not expect them to be. If you want a V with that 1958 holy grail appearance and a great platform to upgrade on. This is it !!!! I am going to strip mine and replace everything with higher quality components. it will be like a 3 to 8,000 dollar gibson reissue guitar without the logo. Who cares? If it plays good and sounds good..... it is good !!! I buy a guitar to play it and get inspired not to sit and look at it !!!! Overall this guitar is a GREAT VALUE !!! I wouldn't hesitate to buy another !!!
7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Epiphone Korina Flying V" submitted March 12, 2017

By Warren deMartini in fort Klamath, OR
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Musical Background: I play at home but I also play the harmonica/harp
Music Style: Blues- 60-70s rock, acid rock..
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Overall: I bought a Brent hines limited edition Flying V. It was purely heavy metal only so I sent it back. Next I bought thevepiphone Korina Flying V.. wow I'm still in shock. It plays excellent. A bit different to hold but it plays as good as my Strat if not better. It depends on what ur playing. I was trying to buy a V to plat Albert kings music without buying a big dollar Gibson.. I'm very happy with this epiphone Korina V very nice. This V plays it all.....rock on
9 of 10 people (90%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Great bang for the buck" submitted May 26, 2009

By a customer from stephens.k12.ga.us
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Musical Background: Active Musican, Recording Engineer, Record producer, Music Director
Music Style: Rock, country,Gospel,blues
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Sound: The Only reason I give the sound an 8, is because when you roll the volume back to get a cleaner tone, it gets really muddy, almost like you were turning the tone knob down to 0. It also has some hum when both volumes are turn all the way down. When the pickups are turned up to 10, it has the kind of tone you would expect out of a v. Sustain for days Feature: Came with a cheap cable. the features are pretty basic. It is a copy of a guitar built in 1958. Ease of Use: This guitar plays great! NO it does not play as well as the Gibson model, But the Gibson model is selling for 12000+ these days! Quality: This guitar is very well made. I can always depend on it. I gig out with it at least once a week with many of those being "outdoor" gigs, which play hell on guitar. Value: this guitar sells at a very modest price. Look at the Gibson version then look at the epiphone version. you would probably save close to $11,500. No Joke Manufacturer Support: Never called them The Wow Factor: I have lusted after a guitar like this for 20 yrs. I just need Epiphone to make one I could afford Overall: I love this guitar. I would replace it if it were ever stolen
14 of 16 people (87.5%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Fulfilling a long over due dream at an affordable price!" submitted June 29, 2009

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: musician, performing artist, producer, video director, owner of Fern Ave Ent. (myspace.com/GryNpa)
Music Style: Rock, Reggae, Blues, Jazz
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Sound: For the price, this guitar looks as amazing as it sounds! I'd be a liar if I said they were the "best" pickups ever, but they do a nice job as is, and can always be upgraded. The guitar is a dream come true, and I am happy with it's sound. You can hear me play it @ myspace.com/GryNpa. Feature: Awesome speed knobs, great 3-way switch, it's simply fantastic. The Grover's might not be the top of the line, but they do a great job keeping it in tune (after a mild tweak to the bridge.) Ease of Use: If you CAN play, you will LOVE this guitar. My hands fly on it, feels great. It's light weight for a stage, and I do use it hard on stage. I've had it for a few gigs now, it's great. If you are not experienced, don't give up, this guitar is for people that know what they're doing a little, those guys will love it. Quality: The best bang for the buck there is! I hope to endorse these guitars one day and work with Epiphone, to be honest. myspace.com/GryNpa. It will be a permanent part of my arsenal, and it will NOT be the last I purchase. If you are thinking about buying it, BUY IT! Value: If you own one, you know what I am talking about. BUY THIS GUITAR! Manufacturer Support: Although the products arrived unharmed, the case and guitar came on separate days, which was a little strange. I called and asked for an explanation, and received a mild cocky attitude from the rep who answered the phone. However, I will not base my experience on one person's mistakes. They did deliver the guitar on time at least, and I love it. The Wow Factor: This guitar is dripping with "sex appeal" It's sexy all by itself, in it's case, and it plays and looks sexy in my hands. lol Overall: 100% Satisfied. I will be getting it set up properly, and one day adding some 57's, but for now, it's amazing value and a dream come true.
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"Classic V Rocker, Well Worth the Pittance" submitted February 9, 2006

By a customer from yahoo.com
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Musical Background: Active "Hobbist" Musician
Music Style: Classic Rock, Blues
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
Sound: Great sustain, very easy to play. Could use a little more fret work but not bad. I changed the pick-ups out, put in Rio Grande Buckers and got rid of the squeal. Great tone in the neck postiton and very usable tone control. Feature: Pretty standard features, tone, volume and three way switch. Gold hardware and klusion copy tuners. Some complain about the tuners but I never experienced a problem. Stayed in tune without issue. Quality: Fit, finish and build on this guitar was excellent; especially for the price. The korina made the guitar extremely light but didn't dissapoint on the tone. I've got a PRS McCarty with the brazilian rosewood neck and fretboard and this guitar was very comparable once the pick-ups were changed. A lght but very sturdy guitar. Value: This guitar is an incredible value. Manufacturer Support: Never had a problem...don't know The Wow Factor: Tell you what, this a great looking rocker with tons of sex appeal. Classic looks and very playable with lots of tone. I wish I still had it but some low life sob broke into my house in Memphis stole it along with several others. I'm looking for another at the right price...seems they've gone up in price. Overall: I've owned Gibsons, PRS's, Fenders, and Hamers but this was a first Epi. I was shocked at the quality and playability of this guitar. Investing a couple more dollars for pick-up and upgraded hardware and you've got a truely great guitar. But if you don't want to invest a few more dollars, it's a hell of a deal right off the shelf.
13 of 15 people (86.67%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Epiphone 1958 Korina Flying V Guitar" submitted August 30, 2012

By Randy S in Jacksonville Beach, FL
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Musical Background: Playing 37 years, Guitar and Bass, Professional
Music Style: Rock+
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Overall: The guitar looks great and sounds good. I'm still getting acclimated to the thicker neck. I will install strap locks ASAP as the screws have stripped out on all my EPI electrics, Les Paul, Explorer and Thunderbird.
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"First Impressions" submitted February 22, 2018

By Chris S in Cincinnati, OH
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Musical Background: Playing guitar/bass for 15 years, gig out every now and then
Music Style: Classic rock, blues, funk
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Overall: Unboxed this bad boy last night and played for about 30 minutes to get a feel for it. Have to add that I initially ordered this about a month ago and it came two days later with the nut broken, not the best first impression of the guitar but breaks happen. Told zZounds about it and they promptly shipped another one. First thing I noticed was this thing is a beauty to look at, great finish, smooth frets, no loose pieces anywhere. The neck is nice and chunky, kind of like my Les Paul neck but slimmer and faster. Before I talk about the pickups I do want to mention that its all personal preference but I thought the stock pickups were horrendous if I am being totally honest. It sounds like its being played underwater in all 3 positions, no sparkle or jangle, just boring and kind of muddy. I plan on changing those anyway so I wasn't disappointed. The electronics could definitely use an upgrade as well (I think that accounts for the lousy pickups partially). Overall, I was concerned that the guitar would be bad out of the box based on some reviews I have read but I was pleasantly surprised to an extent. The finish is beautiful, I feel like I got one of the more fine tuned examples thankfully. I plan on investing a few hundred bucks to upgrade the sound to my liking but overall I think it is a great value for a fraction of the cost of a 80's reissue by Gibson.
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"Great with a few modifications." submitted March 13, 2012

By Steve T in Tokyo, NA
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Musical Background: Playing 46 years. I have 7 electric guitars including a Gibson Korina Explorer, and a Gibson Firebird '76.
Music Style: Blues, Classic Rock through to U2.
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Overall: I couldn't agree more with some of the other reviews that describe the Epiphone pickups as muddy. They lack any character whatsoever, so in order to stay within a reasonable budget, I replaced the stock pickups with Golden Age "Parsons St" H/B from Stew-Macs. Even before looking at new pots etc, I could hear a distinct difference immediately. Real Gibson '57 Classic clarity. My only other gripe is with the Grover tuners which are excessively heavy, and cause the head to drop to a position somewhere between the waist & the knees! I can't find a satisfactory replacement, but have been advised that the Steinberger gearless tuners (fitted to Gibson Firebirds and apparently some Flying Vs) do a great job of restoring the balance (Also sold by Stew-Macs). That said, the neck & body are first-rate, with a decent fret job and acceptable plastic nut. The hardware is of good quality (for the price). Mine sounds very Bluesy now, but it could certainly be cranked up for any hard rock tones if required. The "Korina" finish is nothing like the original Gibson color, but more of an orange tint, still, it looks really classy with all the gold hardware, and it sure makes for a great conversation piece. I like it, but I don't think I'd bother replacing it if it were lost or stolen. Epiphone's own Explorer runs rings around it for balance, and to my mind, appearance. Good value for money though.
14 of 17 people (82.35%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"really cool guitar in a sea of guitars. tweaking it to your specs will make it an even more playable" submitted February 9, 2008

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: living room rock star
Music Style: classic rock
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Sound: i'm gonna get a new bridge p/u. way too much feedback! also, pots are really scratchy. easily replaceable Feature: absolutly beutiful guitar. i can't stop looking at it! Ease of Use: extreamly playable, really nice neck. needs better tuners. they say grover on them, but i've used grovers, and these don't match up Quality: aside from what i already stated, this guitar is an exellent value. imput jack is going to be an issue. Value: great value. but you will need to do a little tweeking, at least i'm going to Manufacturer Support: never needed it, yet The Wow Factor: all you have to do is look at it. i've wanted one for some time, and it was well worth the wait! Overall: i would definatly replace this if lost or stolen. as i've said, there are minor issues that are easily solvible. what i like most about it is, it's stunning to look at, and very playable.
13 of 16 people (81.25%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"For real" submitted May 22, 2008

By a customer from gmail.com
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Musical Background: active hobbyist
Music Style: alternative, rock, metal, blues, some country/blue grass
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Sound: The price on this istrument at its price is the best quality/diversity you will get Feature: The set comes with all you need, a wrench for the neck. They include a cable, but not huge great quality, lets be real, you don't buy this for the free cable. Ease of Use: I bought a les pual standard from epiphone, and I no longer have it. This guitar is much easier to play, and so much more quality. Quality: I say if you like standing out amoung guitarist, go with this guitar, it is my main axe. I've been playing for 5 years and is one of the most unike sound and style in its class. Value: similar offers wont compare, get them while they are here. Manufacturer Support: never had to use support The Wow Factor: The color, to me, says I go everywhere, and look sexy doing it. Overall: I will never, ever, EVER, get rid of this guitar, it's my dream.
6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Epiphone 1958 Korina Flying V" submitted March 22, 2017

By Warren DeMartini in Fort klamath , OR
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Musical Background: Home strummer, played on and off guitar 50 yrs. harmonica 45 yrs.
Music Style: Blues and classic rock..
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Overall: Had it couple weeks, the guitar sounds great no complaints there but quality it started cracking in the top side of the neck then a piece/chip fell off. I have 6 epiphones only had 2 troubles ever. I called ZZ they are more like AAAwesome totally understood wanted to ship another same day....now that's service.....thank you zZounds
2 of 3 people (66.67%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"One of my favorites" submitted December 25, 2015

By Bob G in Pensacola , FL
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Musical Background: Been singing and playing Guitar off and on for 25 yrs, play lead in our Church praise band. 80's rocker doing the praise thing.
Music Style: Rock, 80's hair bands, Christian rock, Blues, jazz
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Overall: I have a 58 Korina Epiphone V along with a les Paul studio, several Strats and tele's, to me the V has the warmest, smoothet sound of all my guitars, it feels so natural and easy to play, I love playing it, A friend of mine builds and restores guitars, the V came to him really beat up and in real bad shape, he spent several yrs working on it as a project, he did such a awesome job. He gave it a new life,
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"Problems out of the box" submitted January 19, 2018

By Dave Stephens in Somewhere, WA
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Musical Background: Been playing guitar since 1965, sometimes professionally, mostly not.
Music Style: Blues, Jump Blues, classic rock, easy jazz.
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Overall: You open the box, the guitar looks really great, but you're cautious because this model has known China quality problems. Sure enough, the nut is cut so deep, playing an open E chord everything frets out and sounds like a bad sitar. So much for the "inspection" tag, nobody inspected this. The neck was set with a noticeable back bow too. I can replace the nut, but am requesting some refund because this one shouldn't have passed quality check. I will check the truss rod to see if it actually works, if it doesn't, I'll send it back and hope someone actually takes a few minutes to make sure the guitar actually works without having to fix anything. The pickups are pretty bad, but I didn't buy it for the sound. I'm going to completely rewire the guitar, put my own pickups in it, and change some of the hardware to improve the sound. The stock pickups are bland, muddy, no sparkle or bite, but what do you want for this low price? Really, this guitar should sell for about $350. BTW, these are not solid body korina, the only korina on it is thin slabs over top and back. Neck is maple. If you're looking for any kind of authenticity, its not there, but to get that you basically have to pay decent money to a luthier to build you one with real korina wood and neck, Gibson doesn't even make theirs correctly, no korina at all. I just got this one to demo on Youtube among my 50 other videos showing off my work. I'm 68 and always wanted a V, should have grabbed the Korean ones they made in the 90's but couldn't deal with it not working sitting down, oh well.
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"Epiphone Korina Flying V" submitted March 4, 2012

By Mark S in Rochester, NY
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Overall: Excellent guitar for the money... I was amazed amazed at how fast they were able to ship it out to me. I was thinking that the origianl pickups would need to be changed but I am completely satisfied with the sound. Very nice playable neck and excellent sustain . For those that complain about the difficulty playing a V style guitar all I have to say is that it forces you to sit in a proper playing posture so not a huge issue. I would recommend this guitar to anyone.
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"Epiphone 1958 Korina Flying V" submitted December 9, 2016

By Joe Abrams in Phoenix, AZ
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Musical Background: Guitar - jam at home
Music Style: Blues
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Overall: Decent guitar, very light compared to other korina guitars I've had. High e string would not stay in nut when tuned. Nut had to be fixed by luthier.
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"1958 Korina flying V" submitted March 6, 2017

By Mike D in Oswego, IL
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Musical Background: 35yrs
Music Style: Rock, blues etc
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Overall: Love it, especially the cost difference between the Gibson. Only issue I had is the pickguard has a hole in one of the bridge bolts and is off 3/16." I was told to retun it or live with it. Still can't find one? But other than the cosmetic issue it's is a fun guitar. Just wish someone caught it.
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"do yourself a favor" submitted March 10, 2007

By a customer from hotmail.com
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Musical Background: something nice
Music Style: metal, rock, hard rock
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Sound: trully great. awsome punch! Feature: I bought a hard case for may guitar and it rocks. Ease of Use: even my dad could get a good solo out of this. Quality: really amazing. gibson quality. Value: no commets Manufacturer Support: not yet The Wow Factor: I got the ebony and it is the most beautiful guitar out there Overall: have you just read what I said???!!!!
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"Soar HIgh With The 'V'" submitted November 28, 2014

By Xavier P
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Musical Background: I have been playing for 15 years
Music Style: Rock, Metal, Nu Metal, Funk
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Overall: By far this is the best guitar I've ever owned. The stock pick ups sound great whether clean or with dirt. A common issue would be the neck, it has a 1950's profile meaning it is thicker, and neck heavy. However the cool 'retro-future' looks of this beauty more than makes up for it! Check out a quick demo of this beauty! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lsjqm4xqgTg
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"Korina" submitted March 21, 2006

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Musical Background: recording musician
Music Style: rock
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Sound: It has a nice ring for me. The sustain is there, but it is not overpowering. It is eay to get a good tone with this. Feature: The three-mode switch is noce, and the tone knobs are helpful. I would like a whammy bar on it, but ohter than that, it was awesome. Ease of Use: Pretty easy for a good sound. Almost all string types float on this guitar. Quality: The mode switch broke within a month, and the neck twisted in a year, but the neck was from the cold (i;m from alaska). the switch could be a little stronger. Value: It is awesome
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A temporary customer reference number is assigned to each customer only while they are shopping on zZounds.com. If you call our customer service department for assistance, this number makes it easier for us to answer any questions you have about products, services or purchases.
 
close [x]What is this?
A temporary customer reference number is assigned to each customer only while they are shopping on zZounds.com. If you call our customer service department for assistance, this number makes it easier for us to answer any questions you have about products, services or purchases.
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1. zZounds offers the industry‘s most musician-friendly payment plans

zZounds offers a variety of Play as you Pay® installment plans that allow you to get the gear you want today. While our competitors might offer house credit cards that require you to fill out an application and pass a credit check, our payment plans are easy to get, simple to use, and, best of all, accrue zero interest. Unlike those house credit cards that can leave you vulnerable to exorbitant interest charges once the promotional period ends, we never have and never will charge interest when you take advantage of one of the zZounds Play as you Pay® plans.

zZounds payment plans details »

2. zZounds guarantees the lowest price

Seen it for less somewhere else? Get it for less at zZounds. Simply click the “Seen it for less?” link on any product page and as long as we‘re not losing money, we‘ll beat any legitimate competitor‘s lowest price, usually within two hours. Want our best price even faster? Call us at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637), and we‘ll provide you with a lower price on the phone. Also, if you purchase from us and later find the product for less elsewhere, call or email us within 45 days, and we‘ll refund you the difference.

zZounds.com price match details »

3. Nobody Beats zZounds‘ Fast & Free Shipping

At zZounds, we know you want your gear fast, and shipped to you free of charge. That‘s why we have absolutely free ground shipping on every single order shipped within the continental United States. This includes heavy and oversized items. No minimum purchase required. No exclusions. We also ship over 90% of our orders with FREE 2-day shipping. We pull it all off with our strategically placed, coast-to-coast warehouses.

zZounds.com shipping details »

4. zZounds makes returns super easy

Buy it, try it, like it, or return it to us for a full refund. It‘s just that simple. If you‘re not in love with what you bought, return it to zZounds within 45 days, and we‘ll promptly arrange for an exchange or a refund. No hassles. No hidden charges. And if a product‘s defective or damaged, call us at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637), and we‘ll email you a prepaid shipping label so you can easily return it to us at zero cost to you.

zZounds.com return details »

5. zZounds delivers top-rated customer service

zZounds has received multiple Bizrate® Circle of Excellence Platinum awards, placing us in the top 0.7 percent of Bizrate‘s network of 5,200 retailers. Our success in meeting the needs of our customers -- since 1996, we‘ve satisfied over 1,000,000 people -- is due in large part to the fact that zZounds only hires experienced musicians to answer your calls and emails, and they are never paid a commission.

zZounds.com customer service »
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Available on
orders $59+
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Need it now but short of cash? All we need is the first payment up front and the rest in easy monthly payments!

Fast approval.
We approve everyone, with very few exceptions, as long as we can verify your identity.
No interest. Ever.
It's just as if you paid the whole amount up front!
No paperwork. Nothing to track.
No application to mail or fax, no bills to pay. We automatically charge the payments to your credit card.

We'll wait on your money so you don't have to wait for your gear!

When you checkout, just click the Play as you Pay® checkbox to indicate which installment plan you wish to use.

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no minimum

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Why fight traffic and pushy salesmen when we'll bring your gear straight to your home, free of charge?

zZounds free shipping is really free!
No hidden charges or hassles on returns.
Fast, reliable delivery
We have warehouses on both coasts, so most shipments arrive in 3 days or less.
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A guarantee so solid, you never have to worry about price when shopping at zZounds

We'll beat any price
Simply click the Seen it for less? link next to the gear you want or call us at 800-zZounds (800-996-8637)
Got a coupon from another site?
Use it with us - we'll beat those prices, too!
Find a better price after buying from us?
No problem. We'll refund you the difference for 45 days, so you'll never regret buying from zZounds.

You'll still get the trustworthy service you've come to expect from zZounds, without paying more for your gear!