Great guitar, great price
For the past 30+ years my primary acoustic has been a Gibson J-35 reissue from the 1980s. Sadly, my trusty old Gibson is in need of major work that's going to put it out of commission for many months, so I decided to pick up a low cost acoustic to fill in for a while.
People have been raving about the "Inspired by 1964 Texan" for a few years, so I did some follow-up research and decided to pull the trigger.
Right out of the box I was amazed. The action on this guitar is perfect. Intonation is excellent. Build quality seems to be top notch. The things is rock steady in tune, which amazed me, because the tuning keys seem a bit wimpy. Quality-wise, the only thing I noticed was a slight roughness to the frets when bending strings. That resolved itself after a few days of playing, but suggest that the frets could have used a final polishing.
The tone is just what I expected: bright, punchy, clean and responsive. The slope-shouldered shape cuts the bottom end somewhat, so I wouldn't say that the tone is as smooth or balanced as my big, well-aged dreadnought, but it is 100% usable. The worst thing I can say about the tone is that it's just a bit "brassy" -- sort of what you expect from any new acoustic guitar with new strings.
The electronics on this guitar are useable, which surprised me because I soured on acoustic pickups years and years ago. But I plugged this thing in to a Blues Jr and had a useful tone with no trouble at all. I like that the controls are hidden in the sound hole.
The best "new" guitar is one that inspires you to play and helps take your playing in new directions. I honestly did not expect to get that from a sub-$500 Epiphone "stand-in" guitar, but that's what I have: a new guitar that I can't wait to play every day.
the Epiphone Inspired by 1964 Texan isn't going to replace a treasured Martin or fool people that it's a top-of-the line Taylor but, dollar-for-dollar, it's the best acoustic guitar value I've ever seen.