Epiphone Casino Coupe Review – 2020 Guide

Vlad
| Last Updated: December 29, 2020

Those who are familiar with Epiphone instruments are probably aware of how ES-339 is praised because of its ergonomy.

If you’re looking to buy a new hollow body guitar, you should know there is a same body type model called Epiphone Casino Coupe.

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Laminated mahogany body for better tone
  • Eyephone dog-ear pickups included for better sound output
  • Comes with a lifetime warranty included for peace of mind
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Epiphone CASINO Coupe Thin-Line Hollow Body Electric Guitar, Natural

PROS

  • Ergonomic Body Size
  • Can Be Played Unplugged
  • Ideal For Clean Guitar Sounds
  • Best Budget Archtop Guitar Solution

CONS

  • Quality Control Issues
  • Shorter Sustain and Lower Acoustic Volume

Epiphone Casino Coupe Specs 

  • Type of Guitar: Archtop Guitar

  • Body Size and Type: ES-339 Double cutaway hollow thinline body

  • Number of Strings: 6-string model

  • Tonewood: Basswood braced top with Laminated Maple sides and back

  • Orientation: Available only for right-hand players

  • Neck Profile: Mahogany Slimtaper D neck profile with 1.68 inches wide nut 

  • Fretboard: Rosewood fretboard with 22 Medium jumbo frets 

  • Scale Length: 24.75 inches 

  • Bridge: ARB-1 Tune-o-matic bridge system

  • Color: Natural, Turquoise, Vintage Sunburst 

  • Pickup Type: Dogear Classics pickups with P-90R on the bridge and P-90T on the neck

  • Weight: 6 lbs approx.

Epiphone Casino Coupe Electric Guitar

Pros

Let’s find out the pros it has to offer.

Can Be Played Unplugged 

Due to its hollow body design, the Epiphone Casino Coupe can be played acoustically. This means you don’t need an amp to play along, but we would recommend using one as it would be a shame not to use those wonderful P-90 pickups included.

However, in case you want to do a quick practice, you will be glad to know you don’t need an amp at all so you can bring it anywhere with you almost like you would a real acoustic guitar. Set some proper strings and let them ring.

Ideal For Clean Guitar Sounds

The tone of this guitar is mellow and full and the good thing about it is that in case you need it to sound thin, it’s possible, but not vice versa.

Anyway, this sound seems to be ideal for all jazz players out there. We find it also suitable for folk, country or even some blues musicians as well. It doesn’t handle distortion effects so well, but the clean sound it delivers is really something different from the solid body experience.

Best Budget Archtop Guitar Solution

Casino guitars are important to the Epiphone brand so be sure they will always put a bit of extra content for the price given. While the Casino Coupe is not a regular Casino model, it belongs to the same series and shares their traits. That’s why you probably won’t find a new model with a better price-quality ratio on the market.

Ergonomic Body Size

This body size seems to fit players much better than a typical hollow body guitar. The ES-339 shape is smaller in size so you will be able to reach the higher notes easier. Also, the weight is reduced so your back will say thanks for such a choice.

Cons

Below are the main cons:

Shorter Sustain and Lower Acoustic Volume

Yes. It has a better body. But, due to its size, the sustain is also affected and it generates a lower resonance so it may not sound so nice when played unplugged. It is still capable of playing, of course, but for a seasoned hollow body player, this might be a deal-breaker to you.

Quality Control Issues

For some reason, these Epiphone guitars don’t have the quality control like standard Casino has, so be prepared for a possible additional fret polishing upon arrival if your frets generate buzz or rattle.

What Recent Buyers Report 

They are in love with the visual appearance of this guitar and especially with the weight and say it looks simply vintage all the way. They do comment that the colors seem to be a bit darker than shown in pictures though.

Most buyers were experienced players and Beatles fans. They weren’t disappointed with the tone resemblance, especially for the price offered, although they have a feeling that the American P-90 upgrade could do wonders for this instrument. They especially loved how loud it is unplugged and say that it can almost replace the need for an acoustic-electric guitar. They would gladly buy it again and recommend it to the others.

Factory action setup seems to be alright, but it may require a bit of personal adjusting to get the most for your playing style without compromising the overall tone quality. However, watch out as the balance is a bit off - the neck tends to move down while performing.

But, to be honest, those who have similar Gibson models say that this Casino Coupe sounds a bit cheap when compared, so as long as you don’t expect to sound premium, you should be satisfied with this purchase.

What Are the Components of the Epiphone Casino Coupe? 

Epiphone Casino Coupe comes with an ES-339 body shape and is equipped with the standard f-holes on the arched top which is made from 5-ply layered Maple and Basswood bracing. The pickguard is made from 2-ply white and black panels. 

Mahogany is used for the neck material and it shares the regular Slimtaper D-profile neck type with glued-in set neck joints. The fingerboard is made of Pau Ferro and it has 22 medium jumbo frets with Parallelogram inlays. The radius is 12” and the nut width is 43mm.

It comes with an Epiphone regular Locktone Tune-o-matic bridge and reduced size Trapeze tailpiece. Tuning machines are vintage-styled and they are made of nickel while the truss rod cover is bell-shaped and made upon ‘60s era style.

What Pickups Does an Epiphone Casino Have?

Epiphone Casino has a SS Dogear Classic pickup configuration, P-90R is placed at the neck position while the P-90T is located on the bridge. You can control the pickups by using a vintage 3-way toggle pickup selector provided on the pickguard and adjust the tone by using a set of knobs for every pickup individually.

What Strings Does Epiphone Put on Epiphone Casino?

Epiphone uses D’Addario .010-.046 string gauge for all their guitars.

What Types of Music is the Epiphone Casino Coupe Best For?

The nature of the hollow body guitar is to produce a clean but full tone which is incredibly warm. Such sound structure works the best for jazz music and some vintage blues first who like guitar sound as raw as it gets. 

This type of guitar was also very popular with the power-pop bands such as The Beatles or The Who and even some modern pop bands such as Oasis found a way to utilize it.

But, in general, it’s not intended for modern music loudness and it’s highly recommended to be used to create that vintage flavor to your track.

What Ages and Skill Levels is the Epiphone Casino Coupe Suitable For?

Epiphone Coupe is made for all kinds of players. Perhaps true professionals may find it a bit short in terms of quality for their specific needs, but others will be more than satisfied.

Speaking of skills, Casino Coupe is made for rhythm playing, so it won’t be that easy to pull off some technically demanding stuff because the higher frets aren’t so easy to reach as you would do on solid body models. At least the smaller body size will make it somewhat possible and also make it more suitable for younger players.

Where is the Epiphone Casino Made?

Epiphone instruments are made in Epiphone's factory in Qingdao, China.

What Makes the Epiphone Casino Coupe Stand Out From the Competition?

The biggest drawback of hollow-body guitars is their body size. It’s robust and while it has that beautiful vintage look, it simply doesn’t suit modern players anymore. It probably wouldn’t fit John Lennon either, but they didn’t have so many choices in the 1960s.

Epiphone Casino Coupe is made to offer you optimized body size and make the same impact ES-339 did in the semi-hollow world while keeping the rest the same as much as possible at an even lower price.

And just like all other Epiphones, it’s so affordable that it will be hard not to get that gear-acquiring syndrome just by looking at it.

Epiphone Casino Coupe Electric Guitar

Comparison Overview 

Let’s see how the Epiphone Casino Coupe stands against other relevant models:

Epiphone Casino vs Dot

Epiphone Dot is also named Epiphone ES-335. While this guitar shares about the same top body style, it’s actually a  semi-hollow body instrument that comes with HH pickup configuration instead. So, despite being visually similar, it has a bit of a different and more modern sound at the same price range. 

Frankly, Epiphone Casino is suitable for a limited music genre. It works for jazz, some blues, and power pop sound and that’s about it. You can experiment, sure, but for other genres, it won’t be so much of the use.

Epiphone Dot feels like a much better option for those who are in need of all-around instruments. Its body design will allow you to use guitar effects such as overdrive and even some mild distortion and because of humbuckers, the sound won’t be so noisy when dialed to the max. It will suit modern music much better, so you can play a lot more music genres with it.

Epiphone Casino vs Sheraton

Sheraton is also a semi-hollow body made by Epiphone and it’s an ideal solution if you’re looking for a heavy sounding guitar. It feels to us like it’s combining the best of both worlds and because of its body weight it will produce much more sustain than Casino. But, with such features, the price goes up as well and with the sound heaviness, body weight goes up with Sheraton, too.

Epiphone Casino on the other hand sounds much warmer and full. Sheraton trebles may sound sharp and nasty which won’t fit all genres very well, especially on higher volume setups. It shares the same pickups with Epiphone Dot, so those PAF-style humbuckers will generate a bit more drive and impact and therefore it will fit modern genres much better.  

Gibson ES-330 vs Epiphone Casino

While those guitars are both hollow body types and come with the P-90 pickup, Gibson ES-330, like all Gibson in general, has a much higher price and it’s only available on the used market at the moment.

But unlike Les Paul, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s any better than Epiphone Casino. As a matter of fact, due to The Beatles endorsement, many fans of Archtop guitars will praise Epiphone Casino instead of ES-330. And you can’t deny the fact that the smaller body format seems to feel so much better in general.

Epiphone Casino Tone Tips

Here are some tone tips:

Good Strings Can Do Wonders

It’s strange how such a small change can result in such a significant difference. Factory strings Epiphone delivers are fine, but they are probably stored for a long time, so it’s best if you buy a set of new strings. A pure nickel string may work really well on hollow-body guitars.

Be Careful With the Volume Control

We would strongly advise you to stay away from playing this instrument as you would do with a solid body model. Single coil pickups dialed to the max generate a lot of unwanted noise, so be sure you really want that kind of effect on your playing.

Conclusion 

For all those who are in love with hollow-body guitars, it’s good to know that there is a smaller option available. Most of the sound is there at much better ergonomy so it’s safe to say that the Coupe version has about the same impact as the Casino just like ES-339 had for ES-335. 

People Also Ask

Let’s handle some of the most usual questions about Epiphone Casino Coupe. We will cover some maintenance issues, name some of the most famous guitar players that have been using this instrument and also put some important technical advice along as such events may mislead you that something is wrong with your guitar.

What Does a Hollow Body Guitar Do? 

Hollow body guitar is a large electric guitar with a deeper body. Unlike solid-body models, it’s made of wood sheets glued together and it can produce the tone acoustically. The sound resonates from the top thanks to the f-shaped holes and it’s usually equipped with a pair of single-coil or humbucker pickups.

Is the Epiphone Casino Coupe Hard to Play?

Unlike the standard Epiphone Casino, the Coupe version has a smaller body and therefore a much better ergonomy which reflects in much easier reaching those higher frets. So, if you had a struggle with regular hollow-body instruments, this model may be the answer to your problems.

How to Care For an Epiphone Casino Coupe Guitar

For cleaning, plain cotton cloth is all that you need. Always use a different cloth for polishing and cleaning, Also, please keep Epiphone Casino Coupe in a gig bag or hard case when you’re finished with playing. Archtop guitars have an f-hole that is prone to collect dust which may eventually affect the overall tone.

How to Date an Epiphone Casino Coupe

On the back of every Epiphone headstock, there is a serial number that could help you find a bit more about your instrument. As those numbers varied through history, the best way to find out as much as possible is to type your serial number on this website.

What Famous Artists Played an Epiphone Casino?

While the Coupe version isn’t so relevant to professional users, the original Epiphone Casino had an incredibly long list of famous musicians:

  • John Lennon

  • George Harrison

  • Paul McCartney
  • Pete Townshend (The Who)

  • Keith Richards

  • Brian Jones (The Rolling Stones)

  • The Edge (U2)

  • Glenn Frey (Eagles)

  • Noel Gallagher (Oasis)

  • Dave Grohl (Foo Fighters)
  • Is the Epiphone Casino Coupe a Good Guitar?

    The Epiphone Casino Coupe is more than a decent guitar. Like all Epiphones, it has an excellent bang-for-buck ratio and it’s a bit more affordable than the standard Epiphone Casino. Also, it may be handy for those who find the original model a bit too large in body.

    Why Does Epiphone Casino Have No Sound in Middle Pickup Position With One Volume Knob Down?

    It’s the conventional way of how two pickups work together. Simply said, middle pickup positions use positive and negative parts of two separate pickups and when you turn down one pickup, the signal can’t be generated as it’s missing input from the pickup you have turned down.

    What Do the Knobs Do On an Epiphone Casino?

    Each pickup has a pair of vintage-styled golden knobs with pointers and metal inserts. They have a role in tone shaping and volume control. Also bear in mind that if you set the pickup switch to the middle, you will mute the guitar if you set any volume knob to zero.

    How to Reduce Fret Buzz Epiphone Casino

    Hearing fret buzz on any guitar shouldn’t exist. If you have such a problem, you probably need to do some additional fret polishing or bridge fixing. It’s a standard procedure and it’s best if you can take it to any music store or luthier to have them fixed for you.

    How to String an Epiphone Casino

    Adjust the hole in the tuner to match the straight line with the nut hole, and try to avoid too many windings around the tuner as it will affect the string tune. Two turns should be more than enough. And always change the string that goes to the farthest tuning machine first.

    Vlad

    I'm a 35-year-old rock-oriented professional musician from Belgrade, Serbia with 20 years of field experience in various areas of the music industry. After graduating from elementary music school I joined my first band Alogia in 2001 which had incredible initial success with the debut album and became one of the greatest Balkan heavy metal acts ever. We have recorded several studio and live albums and played as an opening act for Whitesnake, Apocalyptica, and Paul Di’Anno. Meanwhile, I got a chance to collaborate with Roland Planet shop and get familiar with various music equipment for more than a decade. For the last eight years, I have done live audio mixing for numerous bands and other live and studio events, including some TV audio mixing for national television broadcast as well. Currently, I’m playing keyboards for one of the most authentic Serbian music rock legends - Dr. Nele Karajlić, also known for his work with Zabranjeno Pušenje and No Smoking Orchestra.