Gibson systematically forced the Epiphone name
down-market in order to offer a low priced brand - a
great shame as vintage Epis were once far
better guitars than Gibsons of the same era!
Realising their error, Gibson created a small number of very high quality
guitars bearing the Epiphone name in the early 80's, made in the Japanese Aria plant.
After a few years they went one better and launched the Elitist range.
The Elitist models were made by Terada to an exceptionally
high quality level. The Byrdland was
top of the Elitist range.
The Elitist Byrdlands were a massive success, to the
that they hurt Gibson's sales of its own Byrdland model.
Consequently the Elitist was withdrawn a few years
later in order to protect the Gibson model.
As a result, the Elitist legacy is a small
pool of very
rare, exceptional guitars that have become legendary and are
now highly sought-after.
The Spec of the
Elitist is exactly like the Gibson Byrdland with short
23.5" scale on a 2.25 thinline body.
The top is carved solid spruce with AAA flamed maple
back and sides. The fingerboard is Ebony.
Gibson's 50S USA humbuckers are sealed in wax to
eliminate internal feedback and are 24K gold-plated.
The Epiphone Elitist
Byrdland Guitar is one of the all-time most-revered
hollowbodies with astounding appointments and peerless
It is absolutely Mint and complete with its original Mint case and some
tags and warrantee. I was lucky to
find this one.