Alright! Today, we’re going to be seeing a comparison between two big brands. It’s Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton. Both of these options are good enough for you to pickup. However, after looking and comparing them closely, one becomes better suited to your needs than the other.
This is going to be a very detailed article. We are leaving no stone unturned and expounding on every piece of important information. Because of that, this would be quite a lengthy read. If you do not have the time or patience to read through the whole article, that’s fine. Simply look through our comparison overview to find out the main points you need to know.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Comparison Overview
These two guitars are quality, and they are affordable. There are a few things that could’ve been done better, but most of them would have increased the price of the product. So, these are good products.
The features of these two guitars are pretty similar, save for the few highlighted in the comparison table below. We think that, even with the difference in certain features, that the features of these two guitars generally match, one to another.
Just like we mentioned earlier, both of these guitars are affordable. For the quality they both offer, these two guitars have a really good price to performance ratio.
Looking at the brands behind these guitars, Ibanez is a really big guitar manufacturing brand. Honestly, you would be slightly more respected if you’re playing an Ibanez guitar, than an Epiphone guitar. However, Epiphone has a lifetime warranty, something that Ibanez cannot provide.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Comparison Table / Spec Sheet
|Tonewood||Flamed maple top, back, and sides||Laminated maple top, back, and sides|
|Pickup model||Super 58||Alnico Classic (for the Sheraton II), ProBucker (for the Sheraton II pro).|
|Neck||Maple/mahogany set-in neck||Hard maple/walnut laminated|
|Warranty||Not available||Epiphone’s lifetime warranty|
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – What Situation Is Best For Each Guitar?
| The AS93 is a vintage-style guitar. The aim of the whole AS series by Ibanez was to spark up the feeling of nostalgia in its customers. |
This is the major reason why the AS93 has a semi-hollow body design, amongst many other reasons, of course.
Therefore, if you want a nice-looking vintage guitar, you want something that looks like the AS93.
| The Epiphone Sheraton is a vintage electric guitar. The original Sheraton guitars were produced between 1959 and 1970 and are not easy to find in today’s market. |
The Sheraton we all see is not the original Sheraton, but rather, Sheraton II and the Sheraton II Pro, which are both still in production today.
The Sheraton II is a lot more popular than the original and is more widely sort after.
| This is not an entry-level guitar. Therefore, if you’re an entry-level player, this is not the guitar that you should be looking at. |
The major reason for this is that it is not the most affordable of guitars.
We’re not sure if you want to invest this much money in an electric guitar as a beginning. This is bearing in mind the unforeseeable future.
| Like the Ibanez AS93, the Epiphone Sheraton is not an entry-level guitar. On the contrary, it is an intermediate-level guitar, that can also do a good job for you when you go pro. |
However, if the price is something you can afford as a beginner, this can serve you well as a beginner. It does not come with extra features and has the same difficulty level as any other electric guitar.
|However, if the guitar is something you are sure to make a career out of, and not just a hobby, then you can invest in this. |
This guitar would serve you well, through your intermediate years, and even when you go pro.
| Because of the quality that this guitar provides, getting it as a beginner is not a bad idea. It will serve you for a very long time. |
Also, you can rest assured of longevity because of Epiphone’s lifetime warranty.
|Just a little extra something with this guitar: It looks absolutely smashing!||It doesn’t look as smashing as the AS93, but it definitely looks good.|
What Features Do The Ibanez AS93 And Epiphone Sheraton Have In Common?
Semi-hollow body design
Body Style: Semi-hollow Body
The first and probably the biggest similarity between these two guitars is that they are both semi-hollow guitars. Apart from just the vintage look this semi-hollow body provides, it also has a lot of other benefits.
When it comes to electric guitar bodies, there are three types that are usually talked about. These are:
- Semi-hollow body.
- Hollow body.
These body types refer to the amount of wood that’s inside the guitar. Just like you would’ve guessed, solid-body guitars have complete wood inside them. Semi-hollow body are half-filled. And hollow-body guitars are completely empty.
Choosing between any of these three often comes down to personal opinion and preference. Each of them has its upsides and downsides.
However, if we were asked to choose our favorite, it would have to be the semi-hollow body. The reason is that the semi-hollow body lies in the sweet spot between the solid body and the hollow body. Because of that, it shares benefits with both body types, although only to a certain extent.
Why The Semi-Hollow Body Guitars Are Better Than Solid And Hollow Body Guitars
The semi-hollow body works well with amplification and doesn’t produce any feedback on mid and low volumes.
In the strength of the solid body, also lies its weakness. Solid-body electric guitars have a very growling and biting sound. This is gotten from the fullness and weight of the guitar.
Also, they work with amplification and do not produce any feedback, even in the highest volumes. On the downside, because of the fullness of it, the solid body is really heavy.
A heavy guitar means that the length of time you would be able to play the guitar is very limited. Also, it makes it difficult to carry around.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, hollow-body guitars are extremely lightweight! Yes, they have a similar weight to acoustic guitars, to put it into perspective. However, they have a lot of downsides.
The first is that they don’t work well with amplification. This is because, they produce a lot of feedback, even when the volume is low. Another downside is that they sound more like acoustic guitars than electric guitars. Not surprising as they look and weigh more like the same.
Lying in the sweet-spot, the semi-hollow body isn’t as heavy as the solid body. However, because of technological innovations, you can have the same growling sounds like a solid body, using electronics.
Another huge similarity between these two products is that both of these guitars are made with maple as their tonewood.
Although both of these guitars have maple as their tonewood, the maple used for the two are not identical. Ibanez AS93 uses flamed maple, while the Epiphone Sheraton uses laminated maple.
It is no surprise that maple is the most popular choice for tonewoods when it comes to electric guitars. And that’s because of its characteristics.
The first thing about maple is its sound. If you know anything about guitars, you definitely know that the sound is mainly determined by the type and build of the wood.
Although, with electric guitars, the sound is determined majorly by the electronics. However, even with electric guitars, the tonewood contributes a lot to the sound that the guitar produces.
Maple produces a really bright and punchy sound. For many electric guitarists, this is the ideal sound. Hence, the popularity of maple.
Away from the tone, the sound produced by maple has really good sustain, because of the weight and density of the wood. The weight and density of maple is also the reason for its durability. We’re sure you don’t want a guitar that’ll break after falling just once.
Still on the matter of the weight and density of maple, you don’t have to be scared. These guitars were made lighter by making them as semi-hollow bodies. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about carrying so much weight over your shoulders.
Difference In Implementation
The Ibanez AS93 comes with flamed maple. The Epiphone Sheraton comes with laminated maple. In this section, we would be looking at the differences between these two maple choices.
|Overview||Flamed maple is a variation of maple wood. This variation is caused by environmental factors. It does not affect the tone of the wood, only its looks. |
The wood fibers of flamed maple grow in a distorted fashion, thereby, forming curvy lines on the surface of the wood.
The name “flamed” was given to this variation of maple because the lines formed on the surface of the wood resemble flames.
| Lamination in woodwork refers to the process of joining thin pieces of a particular wood together, using an adhesive. |
So, in the case of Epiphone Sheraton, thin pieces of maple were joined together using an adhesive, to form laminated maple.
On the surface, most people think that laminated wood is simply the “cheap” option.
While it is true that most times, it is used in the more affordable guitars, it definitely has a lot of benefits.
|Tone||Flamed maple only affects the looks of the wood. It does not affect the tone. |
Therefore, the tone of the flamed maple is exactly the same as that of normal maple, which we have explained earlier.
| Laminated maple has similar tone to solid maple (normal maple). |
However, because of the adhesives used, the sound from laminated maple is not as clear as the sound from solid maple.
Although, because this is an electric guitar, that can easily be cleared out using electronics.
|Durability||Durability with this one works in two parts. If you’re a traveler, and if you’re not. |
If you’re not a traveler, then solid wood is the better option as it will be more durable.
Rather than artificial adhesives, solid wood is held together by its natural resins. These natural resins can be destroyed if there are rapid drastic fluctuations of temperature and humidity.
When you travel, this is exactly what you experience, thereby making this less durable in that situation.
However, because it’s thicker and more dense than laminated maple, this will be more durable if kept under controlled temperature and humidity.
| On other hand, if you travel a lot and your electric guitar is your travel buddy, then laminated maple is the more durable option for you. |
Because these are glued together using adhesives, they are not affected by change in temperature and humidity as much as solid maple is.
That is not to say that they are not affected, they are. But not as much as solid maple. Which simply means that it will take a longer time and more rapid fluctuations to break laminated maple.
However, if you don’t travel a lot and keep your guitar in a place with regulated pressure and humidity, this then doesn’t seem so durable anymore.
|Looks|| Well, this is where flamed maple takes all the glory. Flamed maple looks absolutely fire!|
The wavy lines across the surface of the wood look really nice.
| The looks of laminated maple can be altered easily to accentuate certain color and grain patterns in the wood they’re made from. |
When compared to solid maple, they can be made to look a little nicer, but definitely not as nice as flamed maple.
Both of these guitars come with gold hardware. Before we move forward, let’s just tell you straightforward that “gold hardware” is not actually gold. Rather, it is “gold plating”. Marketers will tell you it’s gold to entice you to make a purchase then when you do, you get disappointed.
Most of the time, when you see “gold” hardware, it is nickel hardware that has been plated with gold. However, this is for the established brands and the reasonably priced guitars, like the two we’re looking at today.
If it’s a cheap guitar from an obscure brand, then it is absolutely gold paint that will easily fade away. For the purpose of this article, and because the two guitars we’re talking about today are not cheap, we’ll be looking at “gold hardware” as gold plated hardware.
We’re sure the question on your mind right now is “why gold plating?” Well, it’s simple:
- Gold is not corrosive.
- Gold does not tarnish.
- It looks elegant.
There is one downside to gold hardware. As you might have guessed, it is expensive. Although this might not affect your purchase, as both these guitars are still considerably affordable, it will affect your pocket further down the line. The cost of the hardware will affect you when you need a change of hardware.
However, there is light at the end of this tunnel. If the time has come for you to change your hardware and you don’t have enough to get gold hardware, you can easily slip in nickel hardware. Unlike chrome and nickel, nickel and gold hardware are interchangeable.
Another slight hiccup people have with gold hardware is how to clean it. Because this is simply gold plating, you’ll need to be careful when cleaning. So that you don’t end up cleaning the plating alongside the dirt on the hardware.
With that said, let’s look at:
How To Clean Gold Hardware
No polish! The first and most important thing you need to take note of is to put down the polish. While a good polish is great for other guitar hardware types, it is the complete opposite for gold hardware.
Remember what we said about wiping off the plating together with the dirt? Yeah, the polish will get you there 10x faster.
Instead of polish, what you need is dishwashing liquid. Get yourself a non-abrasive cloth and some dishwashing liquid.
The final ingredient you need is patience, a lot of it. You’ll need to clean the hardware gently, making sure not to wipe too hard.
Both of these guitars are available in a left-handed version. If you’re a lefty, we’re sure this is great news. You don’t have to go around looking for guitars that are not as good, simply because they’re the only ones available in left-handed versions.
You have these two guitars, all the same features, and price, only different in orientation. The left-handed version of the Ibanez AS93 is described with a suffix of L, so, AS93L. The left-handed version of the Epiphone Sheraton is described with a suffix of LH, so, Sheraton-II LH.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Features Unique To Each Product
In this section, we will be looking at the uniqueness of each product, and how they compare with each other.
Features Unique To The Ibanez AS93
It comes with an ebony fingerboard
It comes with Super 58 Pickups
The neck of the Ibanez AS93 is made with a mixture of maple and mahogany.
The first difference between the two guitars we’re looking at today is their fingerboard, otherwise known as the fretboard.
As a guitarist, you interact with your fretboard more than any other part of the guitar. Because of the amount of time you spend on your fretboard, it is important that the fretboard feels right.
This is one part that many people are often not too concerned about, but should be. Most of the time, when the fretboard doesn’t feel right, you get tired of playing the guitar and most times, you don’t even know why.
When it comes to electric guitar fretboards, there are a few popular options. You have rosewood, ebony, and maple. These three possess different characteristics, rosewood, and maple representing both ends of a spectrum, while ebony falls in between.
On one end of the spectrum, maple produces really bright and punchy sounds. On the other hand, rosewood produces fuller and warmer sounds. Ebony lies somewhere close to maple. It is not as bright as maple, but it’s closer to brightness than warmth.
Furthermore, ebony does not use a finish. Because of this, you need to regularly condition it. This cleaning and conditioning should be done whenever you change your strings.
Use a guitar conditioner and a cloth to wipe the surface of your fretboard. Easy task, right? Well, we think so. It’s definitely a small price to pay to get a natural feeling fretboard, free of chemicals.
Pickup Model: Super 58
For electric guitars, the pickup model is the most important thing you should look out for. This is the part of the guitar that ultimately determines the sound produced by the guitar.
The Super 58 pickups are an Ibanez original. We always love when the pickups and the guitar are made by the same manufacturer. When the pickups and the guitar are made by the same manufacturer, you are assured of great synchronization.
People really like the Super 58 pickups because Ibanez uses the same pickups across a wide range of guitars, from budget-friendly guitars, to really high-end guitars. It makes a lot of people feel like they’re getting a similar sound experience, irrespective of how much that particular guitar costs.
Super 58 pickups produce a smooth sound that’s a bit nuanced. The sounds produced by these pickups are biting and growling. Sounds like you would hear in solid body guitars and the blues musical genre.
Well, pickups have to do with sound, and sound isn’t something we should read about, now, is it? Why don’t you listen to what this guitar sounds like for yourself? Check out the video below if you want to hear what this guitar sounds like:
Neck: Maple/ Mahogany
The neck of the Ibanez AS93 is made with a mixture of maple and mahogany. We think that’s really good, as both maple and mahogany have their benefits and complement each other’s weaknesses.
For many budget-guitars, the choice for neck wood is usually mahogany. This is because mahogany is a very affordable wood. However, mahogany is not as hard as maple, which also means that it’s not as durable as maple.
This durability is what ensures that, even after many years, the neck of your guitar isn’t bent by the high tension of the strings.
If you have a neck made of just mahogany, after playing the guitar for a long time, it’ll become difficult to keep your strings tuned. That’s why we think that this neck from Ibanez is really cool.
It features the strength and density of maple and the affordability of mahogany. These two combined together, give you an affordable, yet durable, neck option.
Features Unique To The Epiphone Sheraton
It comes with a rosewood fingerboard
It comes with Probucker pickups
Its neck is made with maple.
When it comes to electric guitar fretboards, the feel is more important than the sound.
This is because, unlike acoustic guitars, the wood around the guitar doesn’t play a huge part to determine the sound that the guitar produces. If anything, only the tonewood around the electric guitar contributes to the sound, certainly not the fretboard.
With that said, you can easily see why rosewood was used. Rosewood has a warm, mellow, sound. This is a sound that is preferred on bass guitars and not electric guitars. However, because this wouldn’t affect the sound of the guitar so much, it can be used.
The first thing we see about rosewood is that it is a very hardwood. There is a test called the “Janka hardness test” which determines how much wear and tear a particular wood can withstand. It is measured in pounds.
Indian rosewood, the most common rosewood, has a score of 2,440 pounds. This is an incredible score, especially when compared to maple which has a score of 1450 pounds.
Because of the hardness of rosewood, it is very durable. It will be able to withstand string tension a lot longer than other wood types.
Now, on to the most important thing, the feel. Rosewood does not require a finish. Because of that, it has a completely natural feel. Just like ebony, this natural feeling of the fretboard that rosewood gives you comes at a cost. You would have to regularly condition and clean your fretboard.
Guitar Model / Pickups
The Epiphone Sheraton has three different versions. The first version was discontinued in 1970 and is very scarce in today’s market. Therefore, we would not be looking at that one.
The next version is the Sheraton II, which was released to replace the original Sheraton, and is still in production today.
The final version is the Sheraton-II Pro. The Sheraton-II and the Sheraton-II Pro have all the same features, except for the pickups. The Sheraton-II comes with Alnico Classic Pickups, while the Pro version comes with Probucker pickups.
As you can already tell from the name, the Probucker is a professional pickup. It has better sound and clearer sound than the Sheraton-II.
However, it is a bit more expensive. If you have the extra bucks to spend, the better pickups will make a whole world of difference.
Alright! Want to hear what these pickups and these guitars sound like? Check out the video below:
Neck wood: Hard Maple, Walnut Laminated
The neck wood of the Epiphone Sheraton is made with hard maple and laminated walnut material. The hard maple there provides strength and durability to the guitar’s neck. Because of that, the neck would be able to withstand high-tension from the guitar strings, for a very long time.
However, because maple is quite expensive, and this is a budget-friendly guitar, they couldn’t use maple through and through. Which is why the company added laminated walnut. This is not nearly as hard as maple. However, it is very affordable.
What we think would have been done by Epiphone was to place maple in the areas of the neck that absorb the most tension, and then use the laminated walnut on the other parts.
The Epiphone Sheraton is covered with Epiphone’s lifetime warranty. This lifetime warranty guarantees you that your instrument is free from material and workmanship defects.
With this warranty set in place, you can rest assured that you’re getting a well-working guitar, and not one that has been manufactured poorly.
In any case where you have any problem with this guitar, you can easily reach out to Gibson’s 24/7 customer care service to report your case.
This type of customer service that guarantees customer satisfaction. In the light of the Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton argument, we have to say that the Epiphone Sheraton nips this one under the bud.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Unique Pros
Why Some People Prefer The Ibanez AS93 More Than The Epiphone Sheraton
The Ibanez AS93 comes with Super 58 pickups. These pickups are much better than the Alnico pickups on the Sheraton II.
Another reason why people prefer this guitar is its neck. Maple/mahogany neck is a stronger wood combination than the maple/laminated walnut neck on the Epiphone Sheraton.
Why Some People Prefer The Epiphone Sheraton More Than The Ibanez AS93
With the Sheraton, there’s something for everyone. There are two versions available, differentiated by the quality of pickups, for different budgets.
Another great reason why people love this guitar is the fact that it comes with a lifetime warranty from Epiphone.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Unique Cons
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Ibanez AS93
- Only one version available.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton- Epiphone Sheraton
- Laminated walnut is not a very strong wood, especially when laminated.
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Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Pros Common To Both
|Hardware: gold||Gold hardware does not tarnish, corrode, and looks really nice.||This is also made with gold hardware.|
|Body Type: Semi-hollow body||It reduces the weight of the guitar and it works well with amplification.||Also, it doesn’t give off a lot of feedback and can be made to sound as growling as solid body guitars, using electronics.|
|Tonewood: Maple||Maple is a really good tonewood for electric guitars, because of the bright sounds it produces.||Because of the weight and density of maple, the guitar sounds produced by these guitars are resonant and have good sustain.|
|Left-handed version||This is available in a left-handed version.||This is also available in a left-handed version.|
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Cons Common To Both
|Affordability||Affordability is relative. For the established players, this electric guitar is affordable. However, for entry-level beginners, it’s quite expensive.||Being in the same price range as the Ibanez AS93, this also poses the same problems of relative affordability.|
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – General Feeling Amongst Users
| This guitar was really appreciated by the market. Whether it was purchased as a first-buy, or as an upgrade on the AS73, the absolutely loved it. |
The flamed maple top caught a lot of eyes. Both the people who bought it, and the audiences they used it in front of.
| This guitar was also accepted well by the audience. The Epiphone Sheraton-II, in fact, is a lot more popular than the Epiphone Sheraton was. |
People who wanted more and had the money got the Pro version.
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – What Do We Think?
|We think that this is a really good guitar. Really good features, despite the price. If you’re an intermediate-level player, this is something you should be investing in.||This is also a good guitar. If you want something that has a good mix of old and new, you want the Sheraton.|
Ibanez AS93 Vs Epiphone Sheraton – Frequently Asked Questions
Can you play a hollow body guitar without an amp?
You can play a hollow body guitar without an amp while you’re practicing. Although, it’s not advisable. But if you need to be quiet during practice and your practice area is silent enough, yes you can play your hollow body guitar without an amp.
However, don’t expect the sound quality to be as good as it is when an amp is connected. For performance purposes, you shouldn’t play a hollow body guitar without an amp except you want to deny your audience the sound quality they should enjoy from your guitar.
Is the Epiphone Sheraton II a good guitar?
The Epiphone Sheraton II is a top-quality guitar for anyone who wants to play blues or jazz or any other similar type of music. Although this guitar is a mid-range entry, it still packs a punch for its price.
Thanks to its F-holes, the Epiphone Sheraton II produces big booming acoustic-electric sounds. It is also beautifully designed with a lot of extra features. The guitar also offers you full tone and volume controls for the pickups.
Is SG better than Les Paul?
The Gibson SG and the Gibson Les Paul are two of the most popular Gibson models ever made. For Gibson fans, picking between these two has always been a tough choice. Many guitarists have simply conceded that both models are must-haves.
The most obvious difference between the two models is in their sizes. The Les Paul is heavier than the SG. But apart from that, these two guitars also sound different. The SG seems to have a brighter and stronger tone on mid and high range frequencies.
Both guitars are suitable for any type of music so selecting between the two is often down to personal preferences.
Is a Strat easier to play than a Les Paul?
Choosing between a Strat and a Les Paul in terms of playability is often down to personal preferences. Some guitarists opine that the Strat is easier to play because it is lighter than the Les Paul and has a more comfortable neck. It also offers better upper fret access.
Some other guitarists prefer the Les Paul over the Strat because of its shorter scale length. So if you prioritize accessibility over weight, the Strat will be easier for you. Otherwise, you might find the Les Paul easier to play.
Is Epiphone owned by Gibson?
Epiphone was founded in 1873 by Anastasios Stathopoulos in Nashville Tennessee. Epiphone and Gibson were archrivals in the Guitar market. However, after the death of Epiphone’s founder in 1943, coupled with poor performance from the company after World War II, the company was purchased by Gibson in 1957.
Are Korean made Epiphones better?
From the 1980’s Epiphones were made in Korea through Samick as the contractor. There have been concerns over the quality of Epiphones made in China as opposed to those made in Korea. Some believe that the sound quality of the Korean version is better than those made in China. However, this is a very subjective perception.
In fact, you could listen to the sounds made from both the Korean and Chinese versions and you won’t be able to tell the difference. Many also believe Korean made Epiphones to be of better quality finish than others. While this opinion is also subjective, it is widely observed that most people naturally lean towards Korean made Epiphones.