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Guitar of the week #56 - Epiphone Emperor Swingster

Epiphone Emperor Swingster

A nice lower-cost alternative to a Gretsch.

The Epiphone Emperor Swingster has a cool name and a nice price for what it is.

Let's say for the moment you're really wanting a Gretsch G6120, but you see that price tag and say, "WHOA! Can't afford that!" That's when you start looking at the Swingster because it has a similar vibe for a much nicer price.

The Swingster is a hollow-body that's easy to get along with. It sounds like a hollow-body should sound and the Bigsby vibrato is predictable in a good way.

To note: The necks are different between Swingster and the limited edition "Blue Royale" model, as you'll see from the link above. The Royale has a slimmer "SlimTaper D" shape. What that basically means is that if you want a thinner neck, get the Royale version. As for fingerboard radius, it's 12-inch on all Swingsters.

Premium grade Grover tuners are on all Swingsters. The regular Swingster has Grover 14:1 ratio tuners and the Royale model has 18:1 ratio Grover Roto-Matic tuners. I can say with confidence you would be happy with either.

Both guitars have "SwingBucker" pickups with AlNiCo V magnets in them.

The Bigsby system loaded in to all Swingsters is the B30 model.

For what it sells for, you do get a lot of guitar for the money with the Swingster.

And again, if you think the guitar sells for too much, just look at the price of a Gretsch G6120. A Swingster is a bargain in comparison.


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