Since I was a child, I was a big fan of the Gibson Les Paul. Through the years the Gibson Les Paul series has been one of the most iconic guitars on the market, and rightly so. We have seen famous guitarists that have influenced generations of musicians play their pieces on Les Paul’s.
Most notably Jimmy Page, who is my favorite guitarist of all time. But they are very costly and large guitars. If you have smaller hands and want an entry-level guitar to test the waters, and are a big fan of the Les Paul design and sound, Gibson’s smaller brother Epiphone has the solution to your issue.
With the Epiphone Les Paul Special VE, an amazing Les Paul with all the looks and corresponding sounds, while still having an affordable price. This Vintage Edition has a shorter scale and a slim playable neck that will be a dream come true for players with smaller hands.
The Epiphone Les Paul Special VE has the same single cut-away body shape that the original Les Paul has, and the same amazing and iconic design. The company has pulled some tricks to cut the costs but it is acceptable. For example, it opts for okoume for tonewood instead of mahogany and the carved top that is present in expensive Les Paul’s is not there. It features a shortened scale of 24.75-inches that is bolted on to the body and is also built from okoume wood.
Despite lacking some distinctive features in the build and design, the Epiphone Les Paul Special VE features the same playability and is extremely gorgeous, available in multiple paint jobs, such as Cherry, Heritage Cherry Sunburst, Vintage Sunburst, Walnut and my personal favorite, the solid Ebony finish.
I want to touch a little more on the neck because it is excellent with its 1960s SlimTaper D profile that is extremely playable and is very fast, which makes it a perfect electric guitar for smaller hands. It sports a rosewood fretboard up top with 22 frets and dot inlays. Maybe it doesn’t have the premium feel and touch of high-end Les Paul’s, it can hold itself excellently, both on studio and stage.
The electronics on the Epiphone Les Paul Special VE may be quite standard and stock, but do the job very well. It is equipped with a pair of Epiphone humbuckers, a 650R at the neck and a 700T at the bridge, these are directly connected to the three-way pickup selector switch, master volume knob and master tone knob. The hardware is also very basic, with a fan favorite tune-o-matic bridge and a stopbar tailpiece, for lengthy sustain.
If you ask me how it sounds, I definitely do not have any bad words for this amazing guitar, especially at this price. It provides plenty of warmth and sharpness, with exemplary sustain, it lacked in gain of course, but just a little.
I played my favorite Led Zeppelin blues tunes on it, and it handled them with proper care. It was even capable of sounding heavy if you wish, showcasing versatility.
A great Les Paul for a fraction of the price, the Epiphone Les Paul Special VE is a dream come true.