Epiphone ES 339 Pro Natural 2013 model

Here goes.

I bought my Epiphone ES 339 Pro from Andertons mail order in December 2013. It cost £339 and was supplied with a free Stagg gig bag.

Out of the box the set up was pretty poor, with the nut waaay too high and the intonation all over the place. I intonated myself, but took it in to Noiseworks in Coventry for a proper set up. It didn't need a fret job, just the nut slots, neck relief and pickup height sorting.

It's a great looking instrument, and the finish was generally good apart from the black paint in the f-holes which had a few spots missing. The control knobs were secure, but a little wonky. The "e" logo one the scratch plate became detached within a few days, but a good firm press secured it again and it's been fine ever since.

The neck is quite chunky, D shaped with a lot of shoulder, but extremely comfortable. The tuners are reliable and secure.

It's been my number 1 ever since I bought it. 

Sound wise, it's lovely. Both pickups split with push-pull volume pots and all the sounds are usable, but to my ears it's best on the full neck humbucker where it sounds full and thick clean (roll the tone off about 1/3) and really chunky with a bit of dirt. The bridge has bite. I'd say it's best for blues, jazz and crunchy rock. Both pickups are quite well defined and I've not considered swapping them out for anything else. The electronics on the other hand are not the best, but more on that in a second. 

It's held up to knocks and bumps well, apart from one that took a chip out of one of the knobs. The bridge and tailpiece are a bit pitted, but I like that.

I'm predominantly a home player, but it has seen two 14 gig runs in a show band. The first run went without a hitch, but the year after the switch failed leaving me with no sound in the middle of the most guitar heavy number. I fixed it temporarily with switch cleaner, but that had the unfortunate side effect of stripping off a bit of the black f-hole paint.

Since that run the guitar has been on the wall awaiting a clean up and strings. I'm also planning to fit a new switch, but it's a though the f-hole job so it'll take me a while to round to it unless it fails again. The only other mods I'm considering are removing the scratch plate and pickup covers.

In conclusion, it's a good guitar at its price point. It is well made, despite showing its budget nature in a few places, and if it was stolen I'd replace it with an identical one in a heartbeat.

image

image

image

image


electric proddy probe machine

My trading feedback thread

 

0reaction image LOL 1reaction image Wow! 1reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter

Comments

  • Thats the only Epiphone model I've ever played and been impressed with.
    My father in law has one and its fantastic guitar. I didn't think the neck was that chunky but it did have a great feel
    The Bigsby was the first successful design of what is now called a whammy bar or tremolo arm, although vibrato is the technically correct term for the musical effect it produces. In standard usage, tremolo is a rapid fluctuation of the volume of a note, while vibrato is a fluctuation in pitch. The origin of this nonstandard usage of the term by electric guitarists is attributed to Leo Fender, who also used the term “vibrato” to refer to what is really a tremolo effect.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • TTonyTTony Frets: 15021
    I've quite fancied a 339 - for the smaller body size - and the Epis are considerably cheaper than the Gibson alternative.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • hobbiohobbio Frets: 3280
    You might be right about the neck, you've played a lot more guitars than I have so you've got more to compare it to. It's the chunkiest neck out of mine though and definitely the most rounded. Anyway, you of all people know how badly I judge size.. :D

    I've cleaned it, restrung it and removed the pickguard now. It looks so much better with it off, even if it leaves the wormholes.

    electric proddy probe machine

    My trading feedback thread

     

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • dindudedindude Frets: 5477
    I had one in natural too a few years ago. It was a cracking guitar for the money. I remember the neck being quite chunky, I also remember picking it up more than the PRS McCarty I also had at the time.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • XWulfhereXWulfhere Frets: 415
    Great review @hobbio

    I've been a bit of snob about chinese epiphones but I've had to seriously eat my words since I tried and then bought a Gary Clarke casino a couple of months ago. I can't fault the workmanship or playability. And I actually play it all the time and don't worry about messing it up, unlike my two US made axes. Your review inspires me to go check out some more, I quite like your ES-339, also the Casino Coupe is quite cool too.
    And you know what else? Those safety lids on bottles of sanatogen. There I am trying to get the lid off and along comes my six year old and says "there you are daddy" and it's off in a Jiffy. Someone's gonna get hurt.
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • TCatTCat Frets: 16
    good to know that epiphone have resisted the temptation to slim down the necks on this model. I know its subjective, but I do think fat necks add to the tone, sustain and tuning stability.......looks like a little beauty!
    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
  • hobbiohobbio Frets: 3280
    Update:

    The switch has failed completely, so I'm going to replace the entire loom and upgrade the pickups whilst I'm at it.

    I say me, what I mean is I'm going to pay someone to do it for me. :D

    electric proddy probe machine

    My trading feedback thread

     

    0reaction image LOL 0reaction image Wow! 0reaction image Wisdom · Share on Facebook Share on Twitter
Sign In or Register to comment.