I may be getting too old and losing my mind but isn't Epiphone the Gibson approved guitar? I've had more Gibsons than I can remember over the decades and finally got sick and tired of their quality issues. I had the chance about 20 years ago to play an Epi Korina 58 Flying V and it absolutely knocked me out. Far and away the best playing guitar I had run across from Gibson in a long time. I foolishly traded it and just this year made it my mission to track another one down, and I did, along with a 58 Korina Explorer, so I now have the twins. I've changed out the hardware and pickups and these two are just kick ass guitars at a fraction of what Gibson branded 58 reissues would cost. A couple of years ago I read a series of articles about Michael Kelly guitars and did some research and didn't find one single review with anything negative to say, so I bought a Patriot Vintage off Reverb and it took by breath away. Here was a $400 guitar with stunning beauty, high quality parts, and played every bit as good as my best Les Paul did, so I decided to buy a MK strat, and same outcome! I ended up selling all my high dollar Gibsons, Fenders, and custom made models, and now have 6 different Michael Kelly's along with the 2 Epiphones. I don't have $5000 invested in the entire group and they are the best I have ever owned. Try finding a Gibson brand 58 Korina Explorer Reissue for $5k! In today's world, if you do some research, you can find incredible instruments for the money. Same with amps. What Ceriatone has accomplished is nothing short of incredible.