...and without a doubt it was the biggest piece of shit guitar I've ever held in my hands.
I walked into Guitar Center, and they had some new 2015 Gibsons on display. The sales guys just happened to be talking smack about them as I walked in, along with a couple of other customers (several of whom own actual Gibsons.) Nobody liked these guitars, and we were note even slightly undecided.
The robotic tuners look horrible, even if they do function as intended. It's a massive block of plastic (or whatever it's made of) on the back of the headstock that takes the entire space between the tuners and extends almost an inch out. It just makes the headstock look clumsy. Not at all an elegant design.
The brass nut looks horrible. It's somewhat like a narrow Floyd Rose look, only brass and without the locking parts. Really looked ugly with the fret binding. May look slightly better on a Studio if it doesn't have the binding - but definitely looked like crap on the higher end guitars.
The hardware was pretty cheap. The wrap around bridges were like the ones you see on the lower end Asian PRS SE guitars. They had the gross adjustment screws on the post, but no ability to intonate individual strings. It would be one of the first things I would swap out, as there are much better wrap around bridges on the market.
But the worst part was the new necks. The extra width of the neck virtually makes the guitar unplayable if you have average to smaller hands. My hands are average, and there was no way I could comfortably play the neck. If you have really long fingers, you will probably be okay. But the rest of us are pretty much screwed. Imagine the width of a 7 or even 8 string neck, but with only 6 strings spread across it. The strings felt like there was a Grand Canyon width between them. It just didn't make any sense what so ever. And it just made the neck seem unbelievably clumsy and slow. Might be okay if all you play are cowboy songs with C, D and G. So maybe around the campfire it would work - but it's a Les Paul, so I don't think that's what most people will want it for. Adding additional width to the already thick neck just was a horrid idea, and whoever though of it should be shot.
The sales guys said they had gotten nothing but negative response by people who had seen them. And everyone agreed that all this stuff should have been given as an option, not made mandatory.
And the 100th anniversary logo is a total joke. It looks like it was written on after the fact by a 2nd grader in crayon. I guess the idea is that they were trying to give the illusion that a 100 years old man with a shaky hand had risen from the grave and signed the guitar with one of those paint pens. It just looked horrid. And the hologram on the back just completed the tacky feel of the instrument.
Which brings me to the last point...
The sales rep said that he had called Gibson on behalf of a client, who just wanted a nice new Les Paul - no robotic tuners, no crappy hardware, just a plain bone nut and no 100th anniversary logo. So Guitar Center called Gibson to see if they would make him just a regular Les Paul in the burst he wanted. And the Gibson rep told him that they "don't make those guitars any more."
But hey - don't take my word for it. Go down to Guitar Center and try one for yourself.
The two most important things to remember in life: "The only time it's acceptable to work with amateurs is if you are making porn." "If you want to work with clowns, join a circus."