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Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar   

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Sleek design with coil-splitting HSH pickup configuration and AAA flamed top.Similar to its larger cousin, the Les Paul, but with slightly more radic...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

A sleek design with AAA flamed top and HSH pickups with coil-splitting.

Sleek design with coil-splitting HSH pickup configuration and AAA flamed top.Similar to its larger cousin, the Les Paul, but with slightly more radical curves, the Nighthawk became a cult favorite after it was discontinued in 1999, only having been in production for 6 years. The original Gibson Nighthawk was designed to meet the demand for a wider variety of tone options and a more modern silhouette. Epiphone' Nighthawk features a stunning, non-arched AAA maple top on a thin-contoured, bound, single-cutaway body, with a 22-fret bound ebony fingerboard on a set mahogany neck. The HSH pickup configuration delivers an expanded range of tone options, with a Slant NHT bridge humbucker, NSX single-coil middle pickup, and NHR mini-humbucker. The 5-way pickup selector and push/pull coil-splitting pots on the humbuckers for that single-coil sparkle offer an incredible array of tonal possibilities.

FEATURES
  • Mahogany body
  • AAA flamed maple top
  • Mahogany neck
  • SlimTaper D neck profile
  • Rosewood fretboard
  • 22 frets
  • 25-1/2" scale
  • 12" radius
  • Slant NHT bridge humbucker (4-conductor)
  • NSX single-coil middle pickup
  • NHR mini-humbucker (4-conductor)
  • 5-way pickup selector
  • Master Tone, Master Volume, Push/Pull coil-splitting
  • LockTone Tune-O-Matic bridge
  • Grover tuners
  • Nickel hardware
  • Case sold separately
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
EpiphoneNighthawk Electric Guitar
 
4.8

(based on 59 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (50)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (7)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

96%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Fun to play (22)
  • Good feel (22)
  • Good tone (22)
  • Good pick up (16)
  • Solid electronics (15)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Jamming (19)
  • Practicing (14)
  • Recording (14)
  • Small venues (13)
  • Rock concerts (10)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Experienced (16), Professional musician (6)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Great guitar & endles tone possibilities

Incredible! I bought the Epiphone Nighthawk Custom Reissue last week, the guitar is amazing.

I'm 50 years old and have owned 3 Gibson LP's, 75 LP Deluxe, 80 LP...Read complete review

Incredible! I bought the Epiphone Nighthawk Custom Reissue last week, the guitar is amazing.

I'm 50 years old and have owned 3 Gibson LP's, 75 LP Deluxe, 80 LP Custom and a 99 LP Smartwood. I have also owned a mid 80s American made Strat, 82 Ibanez Destroyer II and a 83 Ibanez 335 Style semi-hollow body. My point being I have owned a number of guitars that are all professional quality. Unfortunatly I don't own any of those anymore. I do own an 81 Alvarez Yari DY51 Acoustic and a 11 Epi LP Custom Blackback. The Blackback is a great guitar and I'm very happy with the quality of it.

That brings me to the Epi Nighthawk Custom Reissue. As I stated in the first paragraph its and amazing guitar.

The build of this guitar is as good as any other guitar I have ever owned, quality, quality, quality. I have never owned a guitar that didn't need a setup right out of the box this one doesn't, the action and intonation are perfect. The pickups on this are killer and are hugely responsive to how hard you hit them or backoff the volume control. Epiphone says that with the 3 pickups, the 5 way selector switch and the coil splitter you have 9 different sounds from this guitar. I think if you know how to use the volume and tone controls effectively you can double that number. Epiphone specs on this guitar say the fretboard is Rosewood, it is as black as any Ebony I have seen and the grain is very tight unlike Rosewood. I'm not sure it is Ebony but I am very sure it is not Rosewood. Whatever it is it, looks great and whatever it adds to the tone, works.The bridge with it individual string height and length adjustment make for a perfectly in-tune guitar. The tuners are Grovers, they feel great and do what they are supposed to do. The Mother of Pearl inlays are beautiful and the Nickel (not chrome) hardware really gives the guitar a classy look. When I originally saw this page on the web site I liked all the colors but the Honeyburst. When I started looking at these in stores the Honeyburst looks nothing like it does pictured here. The picture here is yellow tone and actually the guitar is more of a burnt orange tone, It reminds me of the fall colors I'm seeing outside. It is the color I bought and after seeing all the different finishes I think its the best looking.

I would recomend this guitar to anyone who is playing or wants to play guitar, this has got to be one of the best values you will find with any brand of guitar. Just to be clear I am not saying this is an amazing guitar for the price, I am saying its an amazing guitar AND an amazing price.

Try this thing out!

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Not really all that impressed at all. Rather disappointed, actually.

I'll have to change the controls, change the bridge pickup, and add some mass to the rear of the guitar in order to make it a player. Too much work that should have...Read complete review

I'll have to change the controls, change the bridge pickup, and add some mass to the rear of the guitar in order to make it a player. Too much work that should have been done at the factory. I a good deal on this guitar, but after all the mods I'll have to do to get it sounding decent I'd have been money ahead by ordering some Seymore Duncan pickups and just taking a router and soldering iron to one of my junky old Kramers. Doing that would have gotten me the same switching capabilities without the investment in this Epiphone.
I mostly play Gibsons and Peaveys, but I like a single coil sound so I bought a nice Strat. I can't play it the way I usually do my Gibsons and Peaveys because my struming hand hits the volume knob and turns it down. I saw this Epiphone guitar and thought "A Gibson style body and a set neck with Fender switching? I'll take it!" The volume knob is in exactly the same relative location to the bridge pickup as is the one on a Strat, so I still have the same inadvertently-turning-it-down problem. The balance is bad (it's neck-heavy) which makes it annoying to play for long periods. I do like the single/dual coil switching possibilities, but the pickups in humbucker mode are really muddy (probably the pots and caps, see below) and eally can't be made to sound balanced. In single-coil mode they work much better. The controls designer apparently forgot to take the single/dual coil change in impedance into account when figureinout what pots and caps to use.
Luthierwork, fit, and finish are pretty good, or at least as good as I could expect from Indonesia. No finish flaws I've found yet. There was some weird residue on the pickup surrounds which took a lot of effort to clean off. Pots are absolute junk and (with the caps) are mismatched to the pickup impedance in humbucker mode. They will be immediately replaced with some properly-spec'd decent quality parts.
For the cost of this I expected better quality hardware and electronics. The value rating is reduced because of the necessity of replacing the controls and pickups in order to make the guitar sound proper. Will probably replace the slanted humbucker with the Seymore Duncan JB. I would not take this guitar on stage without replacing the controls and at least the bridge pickup.

Reviewed by 59 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(34 of 35 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I Like It

By Robert Nitsch

from Orlando Florida

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

The Epiphone Nighthawk is a great option If you don't have the experience or $$$ for a high end quality guitar.
The tonal options are fantastic. The Binding, Mother of Pearl Inlays, Grover Tuners, set neck and string through body put together add up to a very pleasurable playing experience.
Mine is perfect.
I consider this guitar with its sound, playability and quality to be the type of guitar (not many do) that actually exceeds the price paid. It holds it tuning, the intonation was correct right out of the box, sound is awsome and it's look is definately high end.

(24 of 39 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Great Guitar, BUT ....

By JojoGunn

from Desert SW

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

I like the guitar, and I WILL repair it, but be forewarned, this could be an issue with someone else like me who will be gigging with it regularly.
Excellent overall value and features.
I've been giving this guitar a good workout weekly for the past 3 months in the band I play in. It's not the best guitar I've played or own/owned (I currently own more than 50, from cheap to very expensive - vintage Fenders and Gibsons among them), but for the money, I feel that it's an amazing value.

Seems well built in general, BUT ... here's where my problems have arisen. This past week, I began to get microphonic feedback (that nasty high pitch squeal - even while not playing) when I got the gain up a bit (not just the volume, but even the overdrive/distortion - even at low volumes). By the next night, it was totally out of control, now to the point of unusable.

I realized that it is mainly the middle single coil, but also some on the slant HB. I use the middle/bridge (in non-coil tap mode) combination a lot, and therefore I will be moving to another guitar until I get this sorted out. I'm afraid that the bridge HB will continue to get worse as well, and I'm chalking it up to cost-cutting measures on this Chinese made model (I still believe that it's a lot of guitar for the money).

I am now in the search for a repair or replacement for the two pickups. I'm not sure that I want to approach the repair (myself or reputable tech), and Seymour Duncan makes a Bridge HB replacement only, but they need to be ordered, because no dealers have them in stock. Also, the middle p/u will need to be custom ordered and will take at least a month. They EACH run about $100. For those keeping score at home, that would mean a total investment of about $600 in this guitar (providing I do the installs myself).
The hit on the pickup replacement takes it down a few notches.

(23 of 45 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

Not really all that impressed at all. Rather disappointed, actually.

By Steve Koontz

from Florida

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

I'll have to change the controls, change the bridge pickup, and add some mass to the rear of the guitar in order to make it a player. Too much work that should have been done at the factory. I a good deal on this guitar, but after all the mods I'll have to do to get it sounding decent I'd have been money ahead by ordering some Seymore Duncan pickups and just taking a router and soldering iron to one of my junky old Kramers. Doing that would have gotten me the same switching capabilities without the investment in this Epiphone.
I mostly play Gibsons and Peaveys, but I like a single coil sound so I bought a nice Strat. I can't play it the way I usually do my Gibsons and Peaveys because my struming hand hits the volume knob and turns it down. I saw this Epiphone guitar and thought "A Gibson style body and a set neck with Fender switching? I'll take it!" The volume knob is in exactly the same relative location to the bridge pickup as is the one on a Strat, so I still have the same inadvertently-turning-it-down problem. The balance is bad (it's neck-heavy) which makes it annoying to play for long periods. I do like the single/dual coil switching possibilities, but the pickups in humbucker mode are really muddy (probably the pots and caps, see below) and eally can't be made to sound balanced. In single-coil mode they work much better. The controls designer apparently forgot to take the single/dual coil change in impedance into account when figureinout what pots and caps to use.
Luthierwork, fit, and finish are pretty good, or at least as good as I could expect from Indonesia. No finish flaws I've found yet. There was some weird residue on the pickup surrounds which took a lot of effort to clean off. Pots are absolute junk and (with the caps) are mismatched to the pickup impedance in humbucker mode. They will be immediately replaced with some properly-spec'd decent quality parts.
For the cost of this I expected better quality hardware and electronics. The value rating is reduced because of the necessity of replacing the controls and pickups in order to make the guitar sound proper. Will probably replace the slanted humbucker with the Seymore Duncan JB. I would not take this guitar on stage without replacing the controls and at least the bridge pickup.

(18 of 18 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A Gem

By Hobbes

from Wrightwood, ca

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

I own a 93 Gibson nighthawk bought from MF, and a Gibson Blueshawk. This model lands somewhere between those two guitars. The build quality is actually better than my Blueshawk. the binding on the fretboard and around the headstock are excellent. The neck is great, the tuners are quality and hold pitch, my first gig proved that this guitar stays in tune and plays like a dream. Compared to the Gibson Nighthawk, the pickups are not as hot, but this is not a bad thing. This guitar has nine tones; and all are usable with a character unique to this guitar. Are the tones worse than the Gibson? No; I like this guitar very much, it is a tone machine, but it does sound different than my Gibson nighthawk. My previous main guitar was a Fender Strat. I also have a fender California deluxe tele. Of my five electric guitars (2 Gibson, 2 Fenders) this will become my main gigging guitar. The only negative to this guitar was one minute sanding flaw that is noticeable only on close inspection. No one will ever notice it besides me. Otherwise the guitar was remarkable. I have never owned an Epiphone before, and I was hesitant, but this guitar is remarkably well built. I am proud play it.the guitar was well set up on arrival, but of course, as we all do, I made adjustments to suit me, and now this guitar is awesome.The unique pick up arrangement, string through, longer scale length, set neck, angled headstock make for a guitar that serves up the best of gibson and Fender and makes you feel like your standing on stage with two guitars in one.Oh, I should say this too, although this is a non american made guitar, it sure doesn't seem like it. I don't see how Epiphone is maintaining this quality control, but it seems to be working, and make this a guitar a worthy investment.

(14 of 19 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

Nighthawk case

By BrockRock

from Undisclosed

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

If you look at the product/case table on Epiphone.com, you will see that this guitar fits the SG case 940-EGCS and not the LP case 940-ENLPCS. It can be wedged into the LP case ,but the SG case is the correct case. The sparse finish (can appear unfinished at first glance) between the fretboard and the rhythm pickup is just the way they are and not a production anomaly. Production quality issue - Yes. All three examples I ordered had the same finish issue. If I had known this than the first shipped guitar would have been acceptable. The second one shipped had nearly nonexistant finish on the same area. Had the selector switch not been intermittant and the sound not have been inferior to the first unit, it would have been a keeper. The third unit had the same finish issue but sounded better then try #2 and without the switching problems. Third times the charm and Musicians friend was great as usual. The guitar was worth the extra hassle, especially if one knows about the finish quality from the beginning. It really is a tiny area. I just thought it was a production hiccup at first. Also remember to send your warrantee card to Epiphone within 15 days to guarantee coverage. Thats 15 not 45 days. All said and done it's a honey of a guitar and crazy versatile.

(13 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A great choice for versatility

By Greg

from WV

See all my reviews

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

I have only had this guitar for a little over a week but I recommend it to all levels of player . It will be my guitar of choice for rehearsal as well as live performance.
The variety of pickups and their combination of available sounds are outstanding for a guitar in this price range.
Fit and finish are amazing. I had purchased a Gibson melody maker that I returned the next day because the quality was not worth any price. The nighthawk build quality is far superior!
A lot of value for the money. The nighthawk looks, plays and feels like a more expensive guitar

(12 of 13 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Great guitar & endles tone possibilities

By Stratles1

from Michigan

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Pros

  • Fun To Play
  • Good Feel
  • Great Tone
  • Perfect Intonation
  • Responsive Pickups

Cons

  • None

Best Uses

  • Jamming
  • Practicing
  • Recording
  • Rock Concerts
  • School Bands
  • Small Venues

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

Incredible! I bought the Epiphone Nighthawk Custom Reissue last week, the guitar is amazing.

I'm 50 years old and have owned 3 Gibson LP's, 75 LP Deluxe, 80 LP Custom and a 99 LP Smartwood. I have also owned a mid 80s American made Strat, 82 Ibanez Destroyer II and a 83 Ibanez 335 Style semi-hollow body. My point being I have owned a number of guitars that are all professional quality. Unfortunatly I don't own any of those anymore. I do own an 81 Alvarez Yari DY51 Acoustic and a 11 Epi LP Custom Blackback. The Blackback is a great guitar and I'm very happy with the quality of it.

That brings me to the Epi Nighthawk Custom Reissue. As I stated in the first paragraph its and amazing guitar.

The build of this guitar is as good as any other guitar I have ever owned, quality, quality, quality. I have never owned a guitar that didn't need a setup right out of the box this one doesn't, the action and intonation are perfect. The pickups on this are killer and are hugely responsive to how hard you hit them or backoff the volume control. Epiphone says that with the 3 pickups, the 5 way selector switch and the coil splitter you have 9 different sounds from this guitar. I think if you know how to use the volume and tone controls effectively you can double that number. Epiphone specs on this guitar say the fretboard is Rosewood, it is as black as any Ebony I have seen and the grain is very tight unlike Rosewood. I'm not sure it is Ebony but I am very sure it is not Rosewood. Whatever it is it, looks great and whatever it adds to the tone, works.The bridge with it individual string height and length adjustment make for a perfectly in-tune guitar. The tuners are Grovers, they feel great and do what they are supposed to do. The Mother of Pearl inlays are beautiful and the Nickel (not chrome) hardware really gives the guitar a classy look. When I originally saw this page on the web site I liked all the colors but the Honeyburst. When I started looking at these in stores the Honeyburst looks nothing like it does pictured here. The picture here is yellow tone and actually the guitar is more of a burnt orange tone, It reminds me of the fall colors I'm seeing outside. It is the color I bought and after seeing all the different finishes I think its the best looking.

I would recomend this guitar to anyone who is playing or wants to play guitar, this has got to be one of the best values you will find with any brand of guitar. Just to be clear I am not saying this is an amazing guitar for the price, I am saying its an amazing guitar AND an amazing price.

Try this thing out!

(11 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Excellent Guitar With Great Range Of Tone

By Joe Bock

from New Jersey

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

As a guitar player, I like to play all different styles of music. This guitar had the perfect tone for any style I threw at it. Indie, Hard Rock, Reggae, Punk, Metal, Ect. Whatever style I played through my amp blew me away and I was impressed with the sound quality. The Nighthawk sounds excellent through a tube amp especially.
When I first saw the Nighthawk, I thought it was probably the ugliest looking guitar in the world, and I didn't want any part of it. However, out of curiosity I listened to demos on the guitar, and fell in love with its sound quality immediately.
When I received this guitar, the packaging was solid, and I received the guitar without a scratch or blemish. It was comfortable to play right out of the box, and in reality it isn't as ugly as it looks in the picture above.
I have 12 other guitars which I has spent more for, and I am impressed with the amount of range and tonality that comes out of this instrument. It is probably one of the cheaper and better sounding guitars out of my collection. I choose to use this guitar more than any of my others.

(8 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Moved to top of the pile.

By Randy Knowles

from Georgia

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

Would recommend to anyone, even people I like!
Super! Great! Fantastic! All that stuff. Filled a void in sounds. Pickups sound great for blues, rock, what ever. You can dial in most any tone you care to. The neck scale match with the body materials give it pop with sustain. Pre-ordered with the thoughts of changing pickups after it came in. Will not change a thing. Love it as is.
Fit and finish is great. First class all the way.
I have 3 or 4 Strats, 3 or 4 Gibson LPs of differing construction, 3 or 4 Reverends, a few Ibanez and a half dozen or so Epi's. New Epi's are excellent. They are comparable with any of the other gitars I have. They all sound and play great. You cannot beat them with anything even costing a couple of hundred bucks more.

(6 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A must have

By GaBluesBoy

from Augusta, GA

See all my reviews

Comments about Epiphone Nighthawk Electric Guitar:

Just received the Nighthawk. Fantastic guitar. Great sounds. Setup was fine out of the box. Beautiful guitar. I have many guitars from Gibson, Epiphone, Fender, Ibanez and Reverends. Probably have 3-8 of each and this guitar is as nice as any of them. Definitely a bargain. Would be a good deal at $600. Sounds awesome on a cranked tube amp. Highly recommend this guitar. Really hope to see Epi come out with a Blueshawk reissue.

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