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  1. #1
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    NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    NGD: 2016 Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345 Sixties Cherry VOS.

    Really nice, chunky neck (profile feels similar to my 2017 LP Std '54 GT and is a perfect fit for my hands) and I love the cherry finish, which is brighter than most of the historic Memphis ES's I have seen in recent years (reminds me of my old '70 335, which had faded almost to a watermelon red).

    The guitar has good resonance and sustain. The pickups are maybe missing a little high end - probably because of the Varitone, but nothing I can't fix with an EQ adjustment on my amp. I might swap the MHS at some point.

    This is my first 345, so I am still trying to get used to the Varitone, which is wired for stereo on this model (but not out of phase in the middle position of the pickup switch).

    Overall impression is positive - I am a chronic guitar flipper, but I think this one will stick around for a while.











  2. #2

    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Gorgeous! Congrats!

  3. #3
    Les Paul Forum Member AA00475Bassman's Avatar
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Beautiful 345, really like the Memphis 345 - 355 great guitars !
    He was a sonic disaster, thinking hours of practice would make up for stock pickups, poorly carved top and The wrong glue !

  4. #4
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Thanks, fellas!

  5. #5
    Les Paul Forum Member renderit's Avatar
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Very nice.
    Renderit, You have an interesting perspective and your posts aren't boring...
    Ren, all in all, I'm giving you a C- today's posts...
    Most of what you write with regards to my posts is cryptic nonsensical gibberish like this. I would prefer if you actually added something to the conversation but hey, I haven't walked in your shoes. So being as nice as possible: I look at your posts as if I was dealing with an eccentric cousin who comes to visit unannounced.

  6. #6
    Les Paul Forum Member deytookerjaabs's Avatar
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Good ****ing job man. If it's half as boomy as the other 345 Memphis guitars I've picked up you've got a sure winner.

  7. #7

    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    She is a beauty!! The neck profiles on all of the Freddie King signature models are very consistent. I have played 5 or 6 of them (fortunate to live in Memphis and have ties with factory there) and the profiles are shaped as near as identical as is possible. Very, very good guitars. As far as the MHS pickups, by the nature of the way they are produced, there is a certain amount of variation in output and tone (just like an original PAF), but overall, I like them a lot, especially because they are unpotted, again like the originals. If I had any constructive criticisim of them, it is that some individual MHS pickups seem to have a midrange bump, at the expense of a little top end, but the majority that I have played were well balanced, tone wise. Enjoy that new 345. PS: the number 1 position on the modern Varitone is a true bypass and should not color the tone.

  8. #8
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by reddeluxe View Post
    She is a beauty!! The neck profiles on all of the Freddie King signature models are very consistent. I have played 5 or 6 of them (fortunate to live in Memphis and have ties with factory there) and the profiles are shaped as near as identical as is possible. Very, very good guitars. As far as the MHS pickups, by the nature of the way they are produced, there is a certain amount of variation in output and tone (just like an original PAF), but overall, I like them a lot, especially because they are unpotted, again like the originals. If I had any constructive criticisim of them, it is that some individual MHS pickups seem to have a midrange bump, at the expense of a little top end, but the majority that I have played were well balanced, tone wise. Enjoy that new 345. PS: the number 1 position on the modern Varitone is a true bypass and should not color the tone.
    Yeah, I have noticed some variation in the MHSs.

    This is my 4th Memphis guitar with MHSs; the first three (two 63RI 335s and one 58RI 335) had more high end than this one (a couple of them had a little too much high end!), which definitely has the mid-range bump and mellow high end that you mention.

    I have a set of Wizz PAF clones that I might put in this guitar at some point - going to wait a while, though, until I really get to know the guitar well.

  9. #9
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by deytookerjaabs View Post
    Good ****ing job man. If it's half as boomy as the other 345 Memphis guitars I've picked up you've got a sure winner.
    Thanks! The guitar definitely has a full bodied tone.

    It felt a little plinky when I first brought it home, but I replaced the stock bridge with a Faber ABR (and also added Faber spacers on the tailpiece, which needed to be raised up a bit to clear the back of the bridge) and the plinkiness disappeared and sustain greatly increased.

    I just love the neck on this!

  10. #10
    Les Paul Forum Member Steve Rose's Avatar
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    nice guitar. congrats!
    I'm also a chronic guitar flipper.
    steverosephotos.com
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  11. #11
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    What number is your Freddie King?

  12. #12
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by zoommutt View Post
    What number is your Freddie King?
    132/200.

  13. #13

    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Wow, what a beautiful guitar! The 'not out of phase inthe middle position' seems a bit odd though, to me Freddie's Shelter years tone is absolutely that out of phase sound in the middle position with the bridge pickup rolled back a little to allow some of the in-phase neck pickup frequencies to creep in - but maybe that was the '74 355 on those records...
    Quote Originally Posted by indravayu View Post
    NGD: 2016 Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345 Sixties Cherry VOS.

    Really nice, chunky neck (profile feels similar to my 2017 LP Std '54 GT and is a perfect fit for my hands) and I love the cherry finish, which is brighter than most of the historic Memphis ES's I have seen in recent years (reminds me of my old '70 335, which had faded almost to a watermelon red).

    The guitar has good resonance and sustain. The pickups are maybe missing a little high end - probably because of the Varitone, but nothing I can't fix with an EQ adjustment on my amp. I might swap the MHS at some point.

    This is my first 345, so I am still trying to get used to the Varitone, which is wired for stereo on this model (but not out of phase in the middle position of the pickup switch).

    Overall impression is positive - I am a chronic guitar flipper, but I think this one will stick around for a while.











  14. #14
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    That is a really nice guitar

  15. #15
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr335 View Post
    Wow, what a beautiful guitar! The 'not out of phase inthe middle position' seems a bit odd though, to me Freddie's Shelter years tone is absolutely that out of phase sound in the middle position with the bridge pickup rolled back a little to allow some of the in-phase neck pickup frequencies to creep in - but maybe that was the '74 355 on those records...
    I think I read somewhere that Gibson chose not to wire this run OOP, even though that's how Freddie's was wired.

  16. #16
    Les Paul Forum Member AA00475Bassman's Avatar
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    I keep coming back here to look at your Freddie King , such a killer looking signature! I've never been a fan of Memphis signatures the 335 variations . The ES 345 , 355 have IMO just a push further with fit and finish I really like the binding and inlay craftsmanship. Enjoy your beautiful new 345 .
    He was a sonic disaster, thinking hours of practice would make up for stock pickups, poorly carved top and The wrong glue !

  17. #17
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by indravayu View Post
    132/200.
    I have 28.I got it from Dave's Guitar Shop. It is a much louder guitar acoustically than my 2016 58 ES. Have fun with it.

  18. #18
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by zoommutt View Post
    I have 28.I got it from Dave's Guitar Shop. It is a much louder guitar acoustically than my 2016 58 ES. Have fun with it.
    Cool - I got mine from GC Hollywood. I think once I replaced the stock bridge and put on some NYXL strings, it did get a bit louder. Don't know if it's louder than my old 58RI ES335 (sold it a while back), but the tone does feel a bit fuller than what I recall from the 58RI.

  19. #19
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by AA00475Bassman View Post
    I keep coming back here to look at your Freddie King , such a killer looking signature! I've never been a fan of Memphis signatures the 335 variations . The ES 345 , 355 have IMO just a push further with fit and finish I really like the binding and inlay craftsmanship. Enjoy your beautiful new 345 .
    Thanks! If you are a fan of chunky necks, I can highly recommend these Freddie Kings. Mine almost veers into R8 territory - but it's super comfortable for me.

  20. #20
    Les Paul Forum Member TM1's Avatar
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    I'd replace those MHS things with a set of Throbak Pre-T-301's! I have a set in my late 2014 `63 ES-335TDC and it sounds like a real early Sixties ES-3XX. I've played enough early sixties to know over the last 50 years.
    I wish Memphis had come out with this model in 2014...

  21. #21
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    Re: NGD: Gibson Memphis Freddie King 1960 ES-345

    Quote Originally Posted by TM1 View Post
    I'd replace those MHS things with a set of Throbak Pre-T-301's! I have a set in my late 2014 `63 ES-335TDC and it sounds like a real early Sixties ES-3XX. I've played enough early sixties to know over the last 50 years.
    I wish Memphis had come out with this model in 2014...
    I'm seriously considering swapping the pups. These particular MHSs sound OK to me, but are definitely missing a little something on the top end. I have a set of Wizz PAFs that I can throw in it eventually.

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