Epiphone Les Paul Special 2 Electric Guitar (Features + Reviews)

The Epiphone Les Paul Special II Electric Guitar delivers the first-class qualities of a Les Paul, but at a super-low price. Made with a smooth 22-fret rosewood fingerboard, bolt-on mahogany neck and mahogany body, this guitar style is just as impressive as its uptown cousins. It features 650R/700T Humbucker open-coil pickups that produce high-quality and sustained Les Paul tones.

epiphone les paul special ii vintage sunburst

Similar to other Epiphone styled electric guitars, this model is equipped with an exclusive heavy-duty non-rotating output jack, a 3-way pickup selector toggle switch, and 500K potentiometers for complete master tone and master volume controls.

The Epiphone #1 selling guitar – Les Paul SPECIAL 2 – is a practical choice for the beginners to get started with this musical instrument, but also gets to benefit from the tone and feel of a Les Paul. However, it is not just for beginners, the LP Special II can make a useful workhorse for the seasoned pros that would like to leave their more high-end guitars at home.

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Epiphone Special II Highlights

  • #1 Great-sounding electric guitar for the beginners and a useful workhorse for the pros in 2017
  • 700T and 650R open-coil Humbucker pickups
  • Nickel hardware
  • 1960s SlimTaper “D” profile
  • Covered machine heads

The Epiphone Les Paul SPECIAL 2 Electric Guitar is in the best possible price range for a licensed Les Paul instrument. If you are in search of an entry-level electric guitar, this model is certainly among the best options currently available in the market.

Features You’ll Value

Super value for the money (Under $200), the Epiphone SPECIAL 2 Electric Guitar is a feature-rich instrument. The stop piece, tune-o-matic bridge, and pickups are much the same as found in the more expensive Epiphone guitars. Here are some of its top features:

Design

les paul special 2

The sleek styling of this Epiphone guitar makes the entry-level price seem even that much more impressive. It has a slim cutaway body in mahogany to create the classic Les Paul look, and includes a 24.75 inch scale length.

In respect of the outer finish of this electric guitar, there is a choice of three color finishes – ebony, heritage cherry sunburst and vintage sunburst. Even though the Ebony or Vintage Sunburst do not offer the most inspiring of color options, the Heritage Cherry Sunburst is likely to appeal to those in search of the most striking look, but these is likely to be an extra $25/30 for this option.

Different to the high-end Les Paul set-necked editions, the Epiphone Les Paul SPECIAL 2 Electric Guitar is built with a bolt-on neck, which is necessary to offer the affordable price, but doesn’t really have much of a negative impact on the sound.

The tonewood used in the process of creating this guitar is mahogany, which appears at both the neck and the body. For the fretboard, this is made of a simple rosewood piece with standard inlays, while there are also the white dot inlays and 22 frets. The top of the guitar has a glossy black and Epiphone-branded headstock, with 14:1 covered machine heads. In the main, you can’t really fault the all-round design of this electric guitar, especially when you consider its price point in the market.

Also, the style of the Epiphone LP Special II is great for the complete beginners compared to many other similar options in the market. The relatively flat body with the low angle for the neck and headstock means there is a much lower risk of causing damage to the instrument in the event of knocking it over or laying it down.

Features

Without doubt, one of the finest features of this beginner guitar is the quality of the two pickups. The guitar is built with the two open-coil, passive humbuckers – a 650R and 700T – at the neck and bridge – to create the type of tone that is expected from a Les Paul inspired instrument.

The high-quality of the original pickups means that most beginners aren’t likely to look at upgrading them in the future. The all-round quality of this guitar means it is a very safe choice for the beginner and there is virtually no risk of them outgrowing the sound of this guitar while progressing through the learning stages.

Other than that, you are not too overloaded with extras. There is a basic master tone and master volume control knob, as well as the 3-way pickup switch for treble/rhythm. But, they certainly deliver on what they need to do and suit the style of this guitar while feeling quite robust.

In respect of the stopbar tailpiece and LockTone Tune-o-matic bridge, this delivers good quality tuning that is stable, reliable, and makes it easy to adjust the strings (the factory strings aren’t the best so you will want to do this quite soon).

In addition, this Epiphone LP SPECIAL 2 Electric Guitar has a bridge combo that is much like the design of the more high-end guitars, which is certain to add even more value to this entry-level instrument.

Hardware

Most of the affordable electric guitars are built with the most basic hardware, but the quality of the Les Paul Epiphone Special 2 is still high with the nickel hardware. This includes the Epiphone StopBar tailpiece and tune-o-matic bridge for the high-quality sustain and all-round great value. In addition to the standard edition of the guitar, there is also a left-handed model for southpaws (comes in vintage sunburst and heritage cherry sunburst finishes).

Performance

The two pickups (700T and 650R open-coil Humbucker) on this Epiphone Les Paul SPECIAL II Electric Guitar are a great feature for such a well priced guitar; they would not seem out of place on a guitar that retailed at nearly double the price. They help to create the tone that is clear and bright, but still includes the amount of aggression that is desired when playing the guitar with the sound cranked up. There should be no reason to be unhappy gigging or jamming with this sound. With this low entry-level guitar, you may not expect to get the quality of the tonewood in mahogany, but that is certainly what you receive with this guitar.

Plus, there is the extremely playable neck, which is certain to be appreciated by those that are just starting out and using this guitar to learn on. It is a very comfortable and lightweight guitar, which has the build to last for years of regular playing, which makes it a perfect investment for the seasoned pros and beginners alike.

What we like

  • Guitar looks and sounds awesome (although there is an extra cost for the nicest color)
  • Quite playable with a great profile and sound
  • Great price range (Under $200)
  • Useful entry-level option
  • 650R and 700T ope-coil humbuckers deliver plenty of bite and volume
  • Well-built and certain to last the test of time
  • Simple to use and understand controls

What we don’t like but Still easily manageable 

Amp cord is located at the bottom of the guitar (may impact the playing position when sitting down)

Who is it for?

The most likely target market for the Epiphone SPECIAL Model 2 Electric Guitar is the newly interested beginners. If you are just starting to learn guitar, this model is certain to make a practical choice that is easily able to grow with you. The setup process is relatively straightforward and there is little risk of getting confused when it comes to pickup selection and selecting the right tone or volume controls for the different pickup.

The Les Paul SPECIAL 2 is likely to be more appealing to beginners over the alternatives with a tremolo bridge because they can present further setup/user problems when first starting out.

For the guitar players interested in learning rock, metal or a similar style, the Epiphone Les Paul SPECIAL II Vintage Sunburst is certain to make a very attractive first choice. The action of the neck means playability is high and the humbucker pickups work great with the high gain styles.

 Les Paul Special II is the #1 Choice of Guitarists in 2017

Final verdict

The Epiphone Les Paul Special II is a great all-round electric guitar with plenty to offer the novice player. The actual guitar feels well-built/sturdy and very nice quality. For anyone that isn’t a musician, but trying to take their first steps to learn guitar, this model is definitely one of the most attractive choices. Even out of the box the sound can sound excellent, but it is still worth making the slightest adjustments to get the perfect balance and tone. Once this electric guitar is connected to an amp you are ready to go. The kit edition of the Epiphone Les Paul Special II is packaged with everything a beginner is going to need and certainty more cost-effective than looking to buy the bits individually.

Overall, compared to the other electric guitars available in this price range, you will find it extremely difficult to find an equally high-quality guitar that delivers the honest sound as this one.

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