Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Review & Prices

Compare
Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Review
  • From Gibson Custom's 2019 Artist series
  • Dave Amato Signature
  • Made in United States
  • 6 strings
  • 24.75"'' scale
  • 12" Fretboard Radius
  • 2-Piece Figured Maple top
  • Weight-relieved Mahogany, Axcess Contours body
  • Mahogany neck
  • Ebony fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: '57 Classic Plus (Humbucker/Passive)
  • Neck pickup: '57 Classic Plus (Humbucker/Passive)
  • Floyd Rose bridge
  • 2 volume and 2 tone Bell knobs
  • 3-way Switch
  • Dave Amato Set neck
  • 22 Medium Jumbo frets
  • Gibson Deluxe Tulip tuners
  • Compare Specs >
    • From Gibson Custom's 2019 Artist series
    • Dave Amato Signature
    • Made in United States
    • 6 strings
    • 24.75"'' scale
    • 12" Fretboard Radius
    • 2-Piece Figured Maple top
    • Weight-relieved Mahogany, Axcess Contours body
    • Mahogany neck
    • Ebony fretboard
    • Bridge pickup: '57 Classic Plus (Humbucker/Passive)
    • Neck pickup: '57 Classic Plus (Humbucker/Passive)
    • Floyd Rose bridge
    • 2 volume and 2 tone Bell knobs
    • 3-way Switch
    • Dave Amato Set neck
    • 22 Medium Jumbo frets
    • Gibson Deluxe Tulip tuners
    • Compare Specs >

    Verdict: is The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard a Good Guitar?

    Made in a country with top quality control, which means you should get a high-quality instrument made with good materials and excellent attention to detail. It's a guitar with decent playability. It has good pickups but might be lacking in terms of versatility. It's a well-balanced guitar for playing solos and chords. You can find other models with valuable features (locking tuners, stainless steel frets, etc) for a lower price. Overall, a good guitar for the price, especially if you like Hard Rock or similar genres.

    Final Scores and Tone Evaluation

    Playability 73
    Sound 77
    Build quality 75
    Value for money 60
    Overall Score 75
    Tone Evaluation
    • Heavy Metal
    • Hard Rock
    • Jazz
    • Blues
    • Funk
    • Country
    Strengths & Weaknesses
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard
    • Made in United States
    • Expensive Wood
    • Locking Nut
    • Top Brand Pickups
    • Weight Relief
    • Tremolo
    • Stainless Steel Frets
    • Locking Tuners
    • Neck-Through Build
    • Compound Radius Fretboard
    • Push Knob or Extra Switch Option
    • 21:1 Tuner Ratio
    • Retainer Bar
    • Strap Lock
    • Luminescent Inlay

    Is the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard a Good Deal?

    Its average competitor's price is $3370, which means that the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard costs around 51% more than the competition. It might be due to it having additional features, but know that you can find cheaper similar alternatives. This takes into account all guitars in our database with 6 strings and Double Locking bridge that are made in United States.

    Explore All Gibson Custom Guitars >

    Is The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Easy to Play?

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard meets 5 out of our 8 criteria items for beginner friendliness, which means that it's a good guitar to start with as a complete beginner. This takes into account the type of frets, scale length, nut width, bridge type, fretboard radius, and neck profile to determine the easiest combination for new players to get used to.

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard
    New Player Friendliness
    • Comfortable shape
    • Tall frets
    • Wide nut
    • Short scale
    • Comfortable neck
    • Easy-to-use bridge
    • Locking tuners
    • Comfortable fretboard

    Hand Size Comfortability

    After taking into account the neck profile, scale size, fretboard radius, and nut width, we can conclude that the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's construction favors people with relatively small hands.

    Nevertheless, this comes down in the end to personal preference. Make sure you test this guitar—or another one with similar characteristics—before buying.

    Big Hands
    Balance
    Small hands

    Scale Length

    Scale length is the distance the strings will span between the bridge and the nut. It can tell you a lot about the overall playability and tone of the instrument. A longer scale length means longer distance between frets, brighter tone and more string tension—which means lower action, but more difficult bending of the strings.

    Here's the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's 24.75" scale length compared to other common sizes:

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Scale Length Comparison
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's scale length (at the top) compared to other popular sizes

    This is the scale length used in most Gibson guitars. If you like the playability of a Gibson, this guitar will feel pretty similar. It's a lot shorter than the typical Stratocaster (25.5'')

    As you can see from the picture above, a shorter scale length also means shorter separation between frets. If you got really small hands, you probably will feel more comfortable playing this guitar than a Fender Stratocaster.

    This scale length also allows for easier bends and vibratos because the strings will have lower tension due to the shorter scale.

    Finally, another thing affected by scale length is tone. A shorter scale will give less room for the harmonics, thus resulting in a warmer, more 'bassy' tone.

    Still, remember that you string gauge plays an important part in all of this. A lighter gauge will make it easier to perform bends, vibratos and will also give you a brighter tone.

    More guitars with the same scale length:

    Neck Profile

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Neck Profile
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's neck profile

    The neck profile tells you the thickness (neck depth) and shape in cross section. Every difference will completely change the feeling and comfortability of the neck. This is a highly subjective thing, but most players indeed prefer certain types of necks (like Cs and Ds) because they feel nice in most hands.

    It has a C type neck. C-shaped necks like this have been the most popular for the last years. The reason is that they feel good in most hands. It's generally a thin neck that doesn't get in your way when playing fast, but that also has enough mass to give your hands a comfortable grip for chords if they aren't too big.

    Thin necks like this make it easier to move your hand across the neck and it helps when playing fast solos, especially if you like to leave your thumb free while playing high on the fretboard. However, thinner necks are also weaker and will need adjustment more often than a thicker neck.

    More guitars for different hand sizes

    Fretboard Radius

    When it comes to fingerboard radius, personal preference will dictate which one is better for you. However, most people seem to agree that a more curved (lower) radius will make it easier to play chords while a less curved (higher) radius is better for soloing and bending.

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard has a fingerboard radius of 12". Here's an image comparing this guitar's fretboard radius to other popular choices:

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Fretboard Radius Comparison with Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's fretboard radius compared to other guitars

    This is the same radius that Gibson uses in most of their guitars. When compare to the other popular radius of Fender Stratocasters, you can see that it's a lot flatter. Guitars with this radius are usually made to bring a good balance between single-note and chord playing.

    Compound radius fingerboards give the best of both worlds. Unfortunately, the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard has the same radius across the board.

    More guitars with the same fretboard radius:

    Playability compared to main competitors

    24.75'' Scale Length
    C Neck Profile
    1.688'' Nut Width
    12'' Fretboard Radius
    24.75'' Scale Length
    Asymmetrical Neck Profile
    1.693'' Nut Width
    Compound Fretboard Radius
    24.75'' Scale Length
    D Neck Profile
    1.688'' Nut Width
    12'' Fretboard Radius
    24.75'' Scale Length
    C Neck Profile
    1.688'' Nut Width
    12'' Fretboard Radius
    24.75'' Scale Length
    C Neck Profile
    1.688'' Nut Width
    12'' Fretboard Radius

    Nut Width

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Nut Width
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Nut Width

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard has a nut width of 42.9mm (1.688''). This size is also known as 1 11/16'' and it's the most common size found in electric guitars. It offers a good balance of string separation at the nut. It's the size that most guitarists prefer as it gives them just enough space to play open chords without muting the strings, but without spreading the strings too wide and making bar chords difficult to perform.

    Frets

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard has 22 frets. Even though 24 frets has become really popular, there's still a good reason to get fewer frets; the pickup at the neck position will be further away from the bridge. This makes the neck pickup achieve a warmer tone. You might want this if you're playing Jazz or similar genres.

    However, if you don't care about the warmer neck pickup, more frets will always be better. It's always nice to have the option to play higher notes if you want to.

    Finally, these are nickel silver frets, so they won't last as long as stainless steel frets. If you use your instrument a lot, you'll need to replace the frets after a few years.

    More guitars with the same amount of frets:

    Fret Size

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Fret Size Comparison
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's fret size (in orange) compared to other popular sizes

    Finally, let's talk about fret size. Some people prefer tall frets because it's easier to press the strings and perform bends since there's less friction against the fretboard. On the other hand, some people like shorter frets because they like to touch the fretboard when playing, or because they got heavy hands and tend to press too much on the string and alter the of the note pitch accidently.

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's frets are Medium Jumbo size. These sit somewhere between a Jumbo and a Medium fret. They're not quite as tall as a full Jumbo, so you'll still feel the fretboard, but you won't feel it as much as with medium frets. This is a good size if you want to make it easy to press the strings but would also like a little bit of ''feedback'' to know when to stop pressing so the notes don't go out of pitch.

    More guitars with the same type of frets:

    Playability Score

    Bending & Vibrato Ease 80
    Chord Playability 70
    Solo Playability 70
    Playability 73

    Does the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Sound Good? Tone Analysis

    Wood will have little influence in the final tone of an electric guitar. Instead, we'll take a look at the hardware used—mainly the pickups—to determine what kind of tone you can expect.

    Pickups

    This guitar comes with pickups from one of the top brands: Gibson Custom. So you can expect well built pickups with great sound that shouldn't need an upgrade anytime soon.

    These are passive pickups, so you can expect a moderade level of hot output instead of the overwhelming output that distinguises active pickups in metal.

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's configuration is HH. With this pickup combination, you'll get warmer tones and more output than using single coils. Humbucker pickups cancel the noise that single-coil suffer from, which also results in a warmer tone. This pickup combination isn't only for high-gain music like Hard Rock or Heavy Metal. Their warmness is also popular for Jazz, Indie, R&B, Blues and more.

    Versatility

    It comes with the popular 3-way switch that is present in most guitars. For more versatility, guitarists tend to prefer a 5-way switch, although it all depends on what you want to use your guitar for.

    Unfortunately, it doesn't come with more options for coil split or coil tapping. This makes it less versatile than some competitors.

    Diagram

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard pickups switch and push knobs diagram
    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard's switch options

    What music genre is the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard good for?

    As a 6 strings, Solid Body guitar with HH configuration and Passive pickups, we'd recommend it for genres like Hard Rock or similar. However, you can use almost any guitar for any genre. This is just the typical type of music for this kind of guitar.

    Sound Score

    Pickups 90
    Sustain 70
    Versatility 64
    Tuning Stability 85
    Sound 77

    How well is the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Built?

    Where is the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Made?

    Knowing where the guitar is produced is a good way to know how well it's built. Some manufacturing countries are known for having higher quality standards. For example, most expensive guitars are made in the US or Japan, but there are some exceptionally great countries—like South Korea—that are building a good reputation.

    The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard is made in United States. Guitars made in the USA have the reputation of being the best instruments you can get. This statement isn't as accurate as a few years ago, but you should still expect top-quality from a guitar made in this country.

    More guitars made in United States

    Quality of Wood Used in the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard

    As an electric guitar, type of wood won't affect the tone and sustain much. Instead, the hardware will be much more important. However, wood is still important for the look and feel of the guitar in general.

    These are the types of wood used in the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard:

    Mahogany wood pattern used for guitar building
    Mahogany Body
    Mahogany wood pattern used for guitar building
    Mahogany Neck
    Ebony wood pattern used for guitar building
    Ebony Fretboard

    The body and neck are made of Mahogany. This is the type of wood found in many top-of-the-line guitars, so that's a positive point for the build quality. This red-looking wood Mahogany is found in Africa and Central America and has great sustain and a warm tone due to its high density. The downside about this type of wood is that it's relatively heavy.

    Finally, the fretboard material is Ebony. This is one of the most expensive woods there is, which is why it's mostly used for fretboards. It is dense, heavy, highly resistant and comes in a really dark color that gives any guitar a classy touch. Tone wise, it helps the high side of the spectrum and provides good sustain.

    Bridge

    The bridge is a Floyd Rose. With this type of tremolo bridge, you'll be able to perform dive bombs and pinch harmonics without getting out of tune. This type of bridge gives you the best versatility, but it also makes it harder to set up your guitar correctly, especially when changing your strings.

    More guitars with the same type of bridge:

    Nut Material

    Another important thing to analyze is the nut material, as it's one of the most important aspects that can affect the sound and playability of your guitar. A well-cut nut will make sure the guitar stays in tune and will make it more comfortable to play.

    In this case, the Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard has a Locking nut. Instead of the typical nut, this nut locks the strings in place and will make them stay in tune even after heavy tremolo use. This type of nut provides the best tune stability, but they also make the guitar more expensive.

    Unfortunately, it doesn't come with a retainer bar for the nut, which would be a helpful addition. Without it, the strings will change pitch once you lock down the nut, so you'll have to make more micro-adjustments at the bridge to tune it correctly.

    More guitars with the same nut material:

    Neck Joint

    The neck joint is the part where the neck of the guitar meets the body. There are three main techniques to attach both parts together: Set-In, Bolt-On and Neck-Through. The latter two provide different advantages, although neck-throughs are the most expensive.

    This guitar has a Set neck joint. This type of neck joint consists of using different pieces of wood for the neck and the body of the guitar. Both pieces are then glued together. This is more expensive to make than a bolt-on neck, but it's cheaper than a neck-through guitar. Some people believe that this gives more sustain than a bolt-on neck due to both pieces having a 'better connection' than with bolts. Still, it's something difficult to prove.

    However, this type of neck joint does have the disadvantage of not allowing you to easily swap the neck for another. This makes this type of neck joint less mod-friendly.

    More guitars with the same build:

    Build Quality Score

    Quality of materials 60
    Features 65
    Quality Control 100
    Build Quality 75

    Most Popular Comparisons With The Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard

    Gibson Custom Dave Amato Les Paul Axcess Standard Specs

    General
    Brand: Gibson Custom
    Year: 2019
    Configuration: HH
    Strings: 6
    Made in: United States
    Series: Artist
    Colors: Yellow
    Left-Handed Version: No
    Body
    Top: 2-Piece Figured Maple
    Type: Solid Body
    Body Material: Weight-relieved Mahogany, Axcess Contours
    Bridge: Floyd Rose
    Neck
    Neck Joint: Set
    Tuners: Gibson Deluxe Tulip
    Fretboard: Ebony
    Neck Material: Mahogany
    Decoration: Pearloid Trapezoid
    Scale Size: 24.75"
    Shape: Dave Amato
    Frets: 22 Medium Jumbo
    Fretboard Radius: 12"
    Nut: Locking
    Nut Width: 42.9mm (1.688'')
    Electronics
    Switch: 3 Way
    Knobs: Bell
    Volume Controls: 2
    Tone Controls: 2
    Bridge Pickup: '57 Classic Plus (Humbucker / Passive)
    Neck Pickup: '57 Classic Plus (Humbucker / Passive)