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Finding the particular specs of 2 guitars online is quite some work.
In many cases, the manufacturers don’t inform the same features about the instruments that you want to compare and you have to start digging all over the web to find them.
But hey, relax!
If you are here, it seems like I have already done that job for you.
Here is a brief description of these 2 guitars:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special is made in China, has a solid mahogany body, a set Vintage 50s “C” mahogany neck, indian laurel fingerboard, and PP pickups. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is made in China has a solid (9-hole weight relief) mahogany body, a set Vintage 50s “C” mahogany neck, indian laurel fingerboard, and HH pickups.
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has Vintage Style Deluxe tuners with Ivory buttons tuners, P-90 PRO Soap Bar pickups, and Standard electronics. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic has Grover Rotomatics tuners, Alnico Custom PRO Humbucker pickups, and Coil-tapping electronics.
For those who want a deeper dive into all the specs that make these 2 guitars different, in this article I will put them side by side so you can see their main differences.
After that, I will show you some sound tests I found, and give you a brief history of each one of them.
I will then talk about their main specs one by one, and link you to some other interesting articles I have written about these specific features.
Finally, I will give you some comments about each of these instruments.
Are you ready to get started?
Epiphone Les Paul Special and Epiphone Les Paul Classic side by side
|Spec||Epiphone Les Paul Special||Epiphone Les Paul Classic|
|Years of production||Since 2020||Since 2020|
|Body type||Solid||Solid (9-hole Weight Relief)|
|Body shape||Les Paul Special||Les Paul|
|Finish||Gloss Polyurethane||Gloss Polyurethane / Satin Polyurethane (Worn)|
|Neck shape||Vintage 50s “C”||Vintage 50s “C”|
|Fingerboard material||Indian Laurel||Indian Laurel|
|Number of frets||22||22|
|Fret material||Nickel Silver||Nickel Silver|
|Fret size||Medium Jumbo||Medium Jumbo|
|Bridge||Lightning Bar||LockTone ABR Tune-O-Matic|
|Tuners||Vintage Style Deluxe tuners with Ivory buttons||Grover Rotomatics|
|Neck pickup||P-90 PRO Soap Bar||Alnico Custom PRO Humbucker|
|Bridge pickup||P-90 PRO Soap Bar||Alnico Custom PRO Humbucker|
|Controls||2 x Volume, 2 x Tone||2 x Volume, 2 x Tone (push/pull coil-split)|
|Switching||3-Way Toggle||3-Way Toggle|
|Weight||7 – 8 lbs||9 lbs|
|Players||Billie Joe Armstrong, Johnny Marr, Carlos Santana, Billy Corgan, Luke Hemmings, Nick Valensi, Lee Ranaldo, Kim Gordon, Ace Frehley, Ronnie Wood||Slash, Gary Moore, Jimmy Page, Zakk Wylde, Billy Gibbons, Randy Rhoads, Ace Frehley, Joe Perry, Peter Green|
What do they sound like?
Epiphone Les Paul Special play demo
Epiphone Les Paul Classic play demo
A brief description of the Epiphone Les Paul Special
“The Epiphone Les Paul Special solidbody electric guitar will add classic looks and iconic tone to your instrument collection. The Les Paul formula has been rocking since the ’50s, and the Les Paul Special respects its heritage while adding some much-appreciated modern refinements like a Graph Tech nut for better tone and tuning stability. The tone is pure vintage, however, with a pair of P-90 Pro Soap Bar pickups crafted in the same fashion as ’50s originals. Whether you’re after the looks or the tone, the Epiphone Les Paul Special delivers the goods at a great value.”Source: Sweetwater.com
A brief description of the Epiphone Les Paul Classic
“Modeled after Les Paul Standards produced in the late 1950s, the Epiphone Les Paul Classic has timeless visual appeal. And its modern appointments contribute to a stellar sounding LP that plays great but won’t break the bank. Guitarists at Sweetwater were impressed by the Epiphone Les Paul Classic’s balanced tone that evokes the sound and vibe of countless classic and modern rock hits. And, they were blown away by the super-hot Alnico Classic PRO pickups and the premium hardware and electronics package that make this guitar a total tone monster. For a legendary look and a killer sound, wrap your hands around the Les Paul Classic from Epiphone.”Source: Sweetwater.com
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a solid body. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a solid (9-hole weight relief) body.
As you probably know, the body type of a guitar is a defining factor for its character and tone.
If you want to know more about how these kinds of bodies affect these guitars, you can check out this article:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a Les Paul Special body. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a Les Paul body.
The shape of a guitar’s body has serious implications on its playability, but not so much on its tone.
If you want to know everything about the effect of guitar body shapes, and their influence on the instrument, check out this article:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a solid mahogany body. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a solid (9-hole weight relief) mahogany body.
The kind of material used to build a guitar’s body is something you should really pay attention to.
This is one of the main factors that define the tone of an instrument.
If you want to know how these specifics materials impact the tone of these guitars, you should take a look here:
Guitarists are often curious about how guitar tops affect tone.
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There are many factors that contribute to the sound of a guitar, and whether it has a top is an important one. With so many options on the market, it can be difficult to make a decision.
The following article will explain what guitar tops are and why they matter, as well as provide guidance for those who want to learn more about these options.
In short, a guitar’s top has a slight, but perceivable, influence on its tone, however, they are mostly used for aesthetic purposes.
Whether your preferred guitar has one or not, it shouldn’t worry you too much.
However, if you want to know all there is about guitar tops, go here:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a gloss polyurethane finish. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is painted with a gloss polyurethane / satin polyurethane (worn) finish.
Guitar players know that there are many variables in determining the sound of a guitar. Yet, one of the most popular debates is about nitro vs poly.
Let’s explore this question, so you can make an informed decision for your next purchase.
These 2 finishes are both types of varnish that can be used to protect and beautify a guitar’s wood. They also have slightly different properties that some players argue can influence the tone of your guitar.
Nitro is a type of varnish that is thinner and less durable, while poly is thicker, way more durable, and cheaper.
Poly provides more protection from moisture and scratches, but some people argue it reduces resonance and sustain. Nitro wears off with time but has a more organic feel to the touch and is said to improve sustain and resonance.
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a mahogany neck. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a mahogany neck.
The type of wood that a guitar neck is made of will have a significant impact on the tone of your guitar.
Tonewoods have different densities, hardness, and acoustic qualities.
The type of wood a guitar neck is built with will determine its final sound.
In the following article I present you a list of the most common tonewoods used in guitar necks, and the influence they could have on the tone of the instrument:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a Vintage 50s “C” neck. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a Vintage 50s “C” neck.
The shape of a guitar neck has a significant impact on the tone and playability.
Guitar necks come in a variety of shapes, so it’s important to know what each of those shapes offers.
Luckily for you, I’ve compiled some general information about each different type of guitar neck shape so you can make an informed decision when choosing your next guitar:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has an Epiphone headstock. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with an Epiphone headstock.
The shape of a guitar’s headstock is not really a big defining factor for its tone.
However, many players argue that differences in mass, especially at the end of the neck can have some implications in tone.
In this article I go deep into that topic and answer the most pressing questions:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a set neck. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a set neck.
Guitar necks come in a variety of different joints, and each one has its own pros and cons.
Knowing the differences between each joint can help you decide which is best for you.
A guitar’s neck joint is what attaches the guitar’s neck to the body of the instrument.
There are 3 types of neck joints: bolt-on, set, and neck through.
Bolt-on necks are attached by screws at the heel of the neck and can be removed easily for repairs or customization.
Set necks attach to a pocket in the guitar’s body and stay put with glue.
In neck trough instruments, the neck elongates and becomes the central piece of the body, where most of its hardware is mounted. Then, there are wood “wings” glued to its side to complete the body shape.
If you want to know the specifics of each of these joints, check out this article:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special fretboard is made of indian laurel. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic fretboard is built of indian laurel.
The material of a guitar’s fingerboards is as important as the one of the rest of the neck.
In conjunction, both these 2 parts have a deep impact on the final tone of the instrument.
Also, take into consideration that the fretboard is the point of contact for your playing fingers with the guitar, so feel is also a very important factor.
In the following article, I share my thoughts on different fingerboard materials and their impact on the final sound of the instrument:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a 12″ radius. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a 12″ radius.
The radius of the fingerboard is a measure of how curved the neck of the guitar actually is when looking at it from bridge to nut.
This curvature is really a defining factor for how the instrument plays, and some players are very strict about it.
If you want to know more about how it’s measured and the effect it has on the playability of a guitar, you should look at the following article:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has 22 medium jumbo nickel silver frets. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with 22 medium jumbo nickel silver frets.
The frets on a guitar have a deep impact on its playability.
Many players don’t consider this as important as other features, but more experienced ones will be very picky about this.
Bigger frets make a guitar easier to play, however, they hinder the overall intonation of the instrument.
Also, there are different fret materials to consider.
In these articles, I dive deep into how important are frets for a guitar.
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a 24.75″ scale length. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a 24.75″ scale length.
The scale length of a guitar refers to the longitude of the vibrating part of the string.
This is measured from the nut to the bridge, and for intonation purposes, the middle point is always the 12th fret.
Different scale lengths have varying influences over things such as string tension, and of course, fret gap size.
If you want to know more about this, I invite you to read the post below:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a Lightning Bar bridge. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a LockTone ABR Tune-O-Matic bridge.
A guitar’s bridge is one of the 2 points of contact the strings have with the body and neck.
It is a central part for the transmission of vibrations through the instrument, and also defines many important factors for playability such as string spacing and action.
Some bridges also have extra functionalities.
To know everything there is about this part of the guitar, please go here:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a wrap around tailpiece. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a stopbar tailpiece.
Tailpieces are often forgotten when thinking about guitar parts, however, they have been there for centuries, and there are many different designs with alternate features.
Whether your guitar has a standalone one or a bridge that works like one too, you might be interested in broadening your knowledge about tailpieces here:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has a graphtech nut. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with a graphtech nut.
The nut of a guitar is a small but very important part of the instrument.
It helps define string spacing, action, and is the source of many of the tuning issues cheaper instruments suffer from.
There are many kinds and materials of nuts out there, and if you want to know how they can impact your instrument of choice, you should go to this article:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has Vintage Style Deluxe tuners with Ivory buttons tuners. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with Grover Rotomatics tuners.
Guitar tuners don’t have a direct effect on how a guitar sounds.
However, their quality will be a defining factor in your playing experience.
It’s fundamental that your instrument has good quality machine heads to keep it in tune.
In the following article, I dive deep into the most common questions players ask about tuners, and their functionality:
Guitar pickups are one of the main components of any electric guitar.
But do guitar pickups make a difference in sound? This can be a difficult question with many different answers.
The most important thing to note is that it is not just the type of pickup that determines a guitar’s sound, but also how and where you place the pickup on the guitar.
In this guide, we will discuss the different types of pickups and how they affect your sound.
We will outline how pickups work and what are the central factors that determine how they influence the tone of your instrument.
Finally, we will help you compare different models and make an informed decision about which pickup is right for you.
The Epiphone Les Paul Special has standard electronics, 2 x volume, 2 x tone controls, and a 3-way toggle switch. The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is built with coil-tapping electronics, 2 x volume, 2 x tone (push/pull coil-split) controls, and a 3-way toggle switch.
The electronics of an electric guitar are what gives the instrument its name. However, because they are hidden inside the cavities into its body, they are often forgotten.
Controls, switches, capacitors and resistances, all make for the circuitry of a guitar, and all have effects on the final tone and sounds it can offer to the player.
If you want to know the main things about this topic, I recommend you follow this link:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special weighs 7 – 8 lbs, and the Epiphone Les Paul Classic weighs 9 lbs.
Guitar weight is an important factor when it comes to finding the right guitar for you.
A heavier guitar will give you more sustain, but a lighter guitar will be more resonant, and easier to play and carry around.
However, there’s no single answer to whether a lighter or heavier guitar will sound better than the other.
There are also many factors that could determine what weight of guitar would be best for you.
Here, I explore some of these considerations and what I think are the main points to take into account:
The Epiphone Les Paul Special is a very simple Les Paul, with everything you need to get a classic tone, without busting the bank.
The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is a modern take on the original Les Paul, with quality of life improvements at an entry-level price point.
Which one do you think you like better?
Hello there, my name is Ramiro and I’ve been playing guitar for almost 20 years. I’m obsessed with everything gear-related and I thought it might be worth sharing it. From guitars, pedals, amps, and synths to studio gear and production tips, I hope you find what I post here useful, and I’ll try my best to keep it entertaining also.