by Jef | 5,0 / 5,0 | Approximate reading time: 2 Minutes
Gibson Modern Collection Les Paul Special Tribute

Gibson Modern Collection Les Paul Special Tribute  ·  Source: Gibson


Gibson is shipping the Modern Collection Les Paul Special Tribute we first saw back during Winter NAMM. If you’re looking to pick up a single-cut with P-90s or humbuckers that’s made in the USA but you’re on a tighter budget, check out these guitars.


Gibson Modern Collection Les Paul Special Tribute

Over the last few years, we’ve seen a surge of single-cut guitars emerge at the lower end of the market. So how can Gibson respond? Offer genuine Gibson Les Paul guitars made in Nashville, USA – but at an attractive price point. That’s the idea behind the new Modern Collection Les Paul Special Tribute. 

Gibson LP Special Tribute P-90 NW

Gibson LP Special Tribute P-90 NW · Source: Thomann

Mahogany, Maple and Rosewood

These models have almost all the hallmarks of classic Gibson Les Pauls. There’s the mahogany body with a rounded neck and rosewood fingerboard that comes factory fitted with a set of 22 medium jumbo frets. It is good to see traditional woods used in the construction of these models, despite being priced at the lower end of Gibson’s range. One slight departure from the traditional recipe is the wood choice on the neck. Although Gibson guitars are perhaps more closely associated with mahogany necks, these models have necks made from maple. I find maple works well for me as a neck wood, so I personally don’t mind that choice.

These guitars ship with either a set of  Gibson’s dual P90 or 490R and 490T open-coil humbuckers. These are wired via a set of two volume and two tone controls, with a three-way pickup selector switch. That’s the kind of traditional set up you would expect from a Gibson single-cut, no messing with the classic formula here. Great! And I like that they offer this model with either P90 or humbucker pickups, both great options for a guitar of this style, in my opinion.


The hardware includes a set of vintage deluxe white button tuners, compensated wraparound tailpiece and chrome hardware throughout. That’s all you really need on this type of guitar, so no complaints here.

The finish options include Worn White, Vintage Cherry, Ebony and Natural Walnut. The Vintage White looks the best to me. But I would have liked to see a few more interesting colours. Maybe if this range sells well, we will see more finish options added in the future.

All in all, not a bad little American-made guitar for just under a grand…

RRP – USD 999 / EUR 998 

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Gibson Modern Collection Les Paul Special Tribute

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3 responses to “Gibson Les Paul Special Tribute: USA-built single-cuts for players on a budget”

    Joe says:

    Gibson Brands Inc., I will always be grateful that they saved Epiphone.

      Cort says:

      Gibson Brands Inc. never saved Epiphone, and neither did the Gibson Guitar Corporation. It was Chicago Musical Instruments who rescued Epiphone in 1957, then ran them as a subsidiary alongside (not underneath) another one of the brands they had acquired a few years previously: the Gibson Guitar Corporation. When CMI was merged into ECL in the late 1960s, the two brands continued to be run by the parent company (now called Norlin Corp) as subsidiaries on the same level.
      Gibson Brands, Inc. was created 2013. I believe that’s when Epi finally moved to become a *subsidiary* of Gibson (e.g. a child entity rather than a sibling), though in practical terms it might have been earlier in the Juszkiewicz era (1986-on).

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