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Friday, November 30, 2012

Jeppson Guitars Capri Archtop, ... (Review)

Reviewed By: Jac Harrison
Purchased from: Manufacturer
Street Price: $2,800.00  USD with case + shipping 


About: 
Jeppson Guitars is a Manufacturer of handcrafted, custom boutique, American-built electric guitars and electric bass guitars by master luthier Bryan Jeppson, in East Brunswick NJ.


This Capri model is a full hollowbody archtop featuring a 25.5" scale flamed rock maple neck dressed in a cocobolo fingerboard with a tinted Abalone moonlit seascape inlay and evo alloy fretwire toped with a bone nut leading into a carved flame soft maple back and top with parallel bracing, bent maple sides with jumping dolphin shaped F holes on either side of the soundboard with a cocobolo pickguard, floating bridge, and tailpiece.



Hardware:
Gold locking machine heads, cocobolo floating bridge with bass saddles with (1) push/pull volume (1) push/pull tone knobs and 3-way toggle switch. 

Electronics: 
Jeppson Handwound hot classic humbucker pickup set with alnico 3's in the neck and alnico 4's in the bridge with coil taps on each. 

Sound

Amp Used:
I used the amp at Jeppson Guitars  -- Carvin head into a 4 x 10 cab 

Selector position Just Neck:
A warm vintage early 1960's hollowbody PAF -- great for Jazz and blues.  

Selector position Neck & Bridge:
An even balance between the neck and bridge with an increase in sustain and harmonics. 

Selector Just Bridge:
Hot and round with clear highs, very smooth and bright. 

Selector position Just Neck Split:
Very fat for a split coil with the added bottom end from the hollowbody. An excellent light Jazz tone - very Gibson p-90-ish. 

Selector position Just Neck Split:
Bright almost hollow Tele /Godin-like

With the coil tap push/pull pots you can get eight different pickup combinations making this a very versatile  guitar for many different styles of play. 

Tinted Abalone moonlit seascape inlay

Action, Fit & Finish: 
The finish is a beautiful blue green burst I have dubbed "Sea Burst". The action was low without any fret buzz and the intonation was dead on. Bryan Jeppson takes pride not only in the sound and playability of his guitars -- but also in their finish and inlays. 

Reliability & Durability: 
The guitar seems to be well made. It is solid through and through. There was no hum or crackles from the electronics all knobs and hardware installed snug and proper.  

Impression:
This is a fun guitar to play. To start the finish on the guitar was just beautiful, but with a luthier like Bryan Jeppson I would expect nothing less then drop dead gorgeous. In my opinion he is an artist and makes each guitar his newest masterpiece. This one seems to be an ocean scene with a blue green burst, jumping dolphin "f" holes, and a moonlit seascape inlay running the entire length of the fingerboard. 
Her body is unique. In Gibson terminology -- she is almost like an inflated SG or if a CS-356 and an L-4 had a love child with an attitude.  A very player welcoming design with a ton of tone. With her handwound PAF style humbuckers that are splittable via push/pull pot, I would have no problem using and abusing her for most of a set.
While  just playing her for 15 minutes, she has left her mark -- and I am in love. This will be a Jeppson Production Guitar in 2013 as this was the prototype and she is already sold.
What I would change: 
I would use a Tusq nut apposed to bone and a Graph Tech piezo floating bridge. Since Bryan Jeppson will build the guitar to your spec -- that is how I would order mine. 
My advice:
If you are a hollowbody player and favor a larger body you need to play a Jeppson Archtop, It is a Gibson and Gretsch killer.

Contact   
Jeppson Guitars
EastBrunswick, NJ

bryan@jeppsonguitars.com
jeppsonguitars.com


Posted 11/2012