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The Porter Les Bois Dog Hair Mahogany features:
The shape is traditional single cut, but with a slightly exaggerated lower bout and a higher, tighter waist than you-know-who. We're quite taken with the look, it's well balanced, and the 8.4 pound mahogany body will not tax anyone used to a traditional Les Paul. Premium functional appointments include include Hipshot hardware and Emerson Custom potentiometers and tone caps. The "Dog Hair" finish is a two step process of starting with the dark base coat that sinks into the finish, and then a light "grain" coat that is mostly wiped off. We love the look.
The bolt-on Les Bois has a quick snappy response and strong acoustic volume, no doubt aided by the quarter-sawn European Beech neck (similar in hardness to Maple). The neck is a generous medium-C shape that provides good palm support up the neck without feeling bulky like a 50' vintage shape. We're of the opinion that bigger necks tend to aid resonance and low end, and while we lack scientific proof, we like what we hear. The Les Bois also sports a dual-action truss rod wheel adjuster at the bottom of the neck. It is both out of the way and functional.
The pickups in this guitar are the Porter Alnico Trons, which we first saw at the 2020 NAMM show. The Alnico Tron takes the Filtertron construction and swaps Alnico pole magnets for the the traditional bar magnet. The Filtertron's closer coil spacing and lower resistance gives it more twang and clarity than a traditional humbucker, making it a favorite for country, rockabilly, or a great mod for a dull Tele neck pickup. Using the Alnico pole magnets adds an extra does of sparkle and note separation. These pickups have lovely nuance, and work well for single note picking or complex chord work. Give them some gain and they have their own unique voice with plenty of harmonic detail, and a rich layer high end content that creates a very full sound without sounding dense or mushy. It's a great package for country, roots, Petty, Eagles, or the any of the great recent Indie bands like Dawes.
The Bigsby Vibrato needs no explanation, and even if you are on the fence about such a huge contraption, the beauty of the design is that it's totally rock solid when not in use. It's not floating, and only comes into play when you call upon it.