A New Classic for Rocking Through the Twenty-First Century
A thicker, rounder, time-honored neck profile emulates the neck shapes of the iconic late '50s Gibson models.
Set-neck construction for better tone, better sustain, and no loose or misaligned necks.
Gibson's 490R AND 498T pickups for screaming tone.
Exquisite Mother-of Pearl and Acrylic Inlays
Among other key distinctions, the SG Standard stands out from its no-frills kid sister, the SG Special, because of the fine mother-of-pearl Gibson logo and holly inlays that decorate its headstock. The SG Standard also boasts figured acrylic trapezoid inlays along its rosewood fingerboard.
'50s Rounded Neck Profile
No guitar neck profiles are more distinguishable than the neck profiles employed on the Gibson models of today. The more traditional '50s neck profile--found on the SG Standard--is the thicker, rounder, more time-honored profile, emulating the neck shapes of the iconic late '50s Gibson models. The neck is machined in Gibson's rough mill using wood shapers to make the initial cuts. But once the fingerboard gets glued on, the rest--including the final sanding--is done by hand. That means there are no two necks with the exact same dimensions. So while it still has the basic characteristics of its respective profile, each neck will be slightly different, with a distinct but traditional feel.
Like all classic Gibson guitars, the necks on Les Pauls and SGs are distinguished by one of the more traditional features that have always set them apart--a glued neck joint. Gluing the neck to the body of the guitar ensures a "wood-to-wood" contact, no air space in the neck cavity, and maximum contact between the neck and body, allowing the neck and body to function as a single unit. The result? Better tone, better sustain, and no loose or misaligned necks.
Gibson's 490R AND 498T Pickups
The mid to late 1960s saw the emergence of a very different type of music coming from the clubs of England. This new genre's players were demanding more powerful amplifiers with increased volume outputs to satisfy their sonic explorations. This led to a call for a more versatile pickup, and Gibson answered the call with the 490T and 490R pickups ("T" for treble, and "R" for rhythm), humbuckers with the tonal characteristics of an original PAF, but with a slight increase in upper mid-range response. The Gibson 498T bridge pickup is the 490's ideal complement. Taking the 490 one step further, the 498 swaps the Alnico II magnet to an Alnico V, thus making it slightly hotter with emphasis on mid-ranges and highs. The pole pieces on the 498T are also aligned a little further apart to accommodate the spacing of the strings at the bridge, which is different than the spacing of the strings at the neck.
Solid Mahogany Body
Probably the most central of all SG features is its solid mahogany body. The mahogany goes through the same rigorous selection process as all of Gibson's woods, and is personally inspected and qualified by Gibson's team of skilled wood experts before it enters the factories. Inside the Gibson factories, humidity is maintained at 45 percent, and the temperature at 70 degrees. This ensures all woods are dried to a level of "equilibrium," where the moisture content does not change during the manufacturing process. This guarantees tight-fitting joints and no expansion, and controls the shrinkage and warping of the woods, in addition to reducing the weight. It also improves the woods' machinability and finishing properties. Consistent moisture content means that the SG will respond evenly to temperature and humidity changes long after it leaves the factory.