I'm an old dude (soon to be 61) who over the years has owned five '64 Gibson Thunderbird IVs, five '66-'67 non-reverse Thunderbird IVs, three '66-'67 Epiphone Embassy Deluxe basses, and a half dozen or so Bicentennial ('76-79) Thunderbirds (which are a different animal, but I digress). The point being that I know a thing or two about vintage Gibson Thunderbirds and am in a position to compare and contrast this Epiphone to the originals in addition to on its own merits. First of all, the Epiphone Vintage Thunderbird Pro really sounds incredible. The Pro Bucker pickups are very accurate looking, without taking them apart I can't say how their construction compares to the originals, but the tone is like WOW! Almost more like a 1964 Thunderbird than a real '64 Thunderbird! '60s Thunderbirds are famed for their piano-like tone and the Epi definitely has that sound! I no longer own any real '60s Gibson T-Birds to do an A/B comparison but the Epiphone seems slightly brighter than I remember my '64s being, and that's not a bad thing since I always felt that they could stand to be just a touch brighter. The "claw" tailpiece is an exact duplicte of an original. The bridge has a wider travel and is placed in the correct spot ('60s TBs are not!). The sunburst finish, although not lacquer, is very close to the real thing. The back of the headstock is shaded black, I'm sure to hide a joint, but at this price, understandable. Unlike an original, the output jack is on the side; I'd prefer it on the top, but no biggie. Interestingly, there's a distinctive little wire channel under the 'guard that vintage T-Birds and Firebirds have that this bass has too. Not visible under the guard and no impact on tone or playability of course, but it's a nice touch and shows that Epi was paying attention! All in all, excellent value for the money, highly recomended for those seeking the vibe of a vintage T-Bird witout the price tag or any lucky owners of an original looking for a "player".
Jazz Bass T-Bird