Gibson unveils 20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard

The triple-threat bird returns
The triple-threat bird returns

Gibson has unveiled the 20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard, celebrating two decades of the three-pickup electric which was first introduced in 1993.

Featuring the Nighthawk's classic pickup combination of a mini-humbucker at the neck, a single coil in the centre position and a humbucker at the bridge, this Anniversary edition also features a triple A grade maple top and mahogany body, and carries an RRP of $2498 (£1649.50).

For more information, visit the official Gibson website.

Gibson press release

20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard

Unveiled to the guitar world in 1993, the Nighthawk has established itself as a “modern classic” in the Gibson stable over the course of 20 years of powerful, versatile performance, while winning legions of fans in the process. To celebrate this highly evolved marriage of Gibson innovation and tradition, Gibson USA introduces the 20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard. This guitar is packed with the clever design features that made the instrument such a winner originally, and dressed worthy of a true showpiece—making it a guitar you will be proud to own and play for a lifetime.

The 20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard retains all the distinctive ingredients that make this unique breed of Gibson so special, including the 25 ½” scale length for firm lows and chiming highs, the comfortable body contours, through-body stringing and unique Nighthawk bridge, and the superb versatility of a trio of different yet complementary pickups, with push-pull coil splitting for the bridge pickup. A high-gloss nitrocellulose finish in your choice of Antique Natural or Fireburst over a gorgeous figured Grade-AAA maple top, deluxe split parallelogram fingerboard inlays, gold-hardware, and a truss-rod cover hot-stamped in gold with “Nighthawk 20th Anniversary” all make this an extra special addition to the proud line.

Body and Neck

The 20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard´s body follows the Nighthawk´s stylized take on Gibson´s legendary Les Paul, with a scaled-down body with deeper cutaway, and ribcage contour for enhanced playing comfort. Its top is made from figured Grade-AAA maple, and its back is solid mahogany. A solid, quarter-sawn mahogany neck with a 25 ½” scale length is glued into the body and carved in a comfortably rounded profile that measures 0.818” at the 1st fret and 0.963” at the 12th. The guitar has a bound fingerboard made from solid Grade-A rosewood, inlaid with split parallelogram position markers. A Corian™ nut cut on Gibson´s computer-controlled PLEK helps to ensure optimum sustain and precise intonation.

Pickups and Electronics

Much of the 20th Anniversary Nighthawk Standard´s unparalleled versatility is found in its trio of different yet complementary pickups. The Nighthawk Mini-Humbucker in the neck position offers a rich, throaty growl, but with plenty of definition; an NSX Nighthawk Single-Coil in the middle offers both snappy funk tones and thumping midrange; and the Nighthawk Lead Humbucker in the bridge position yields tones from mammoth crunch to articulate, singing lead sounds. Just pop up the tone control´s push-pull switch to tap brighter single-coil sounds, and blend myriad combinations of these with the five-way switch. Master tone and volume controls make on-the-fly adjustments a breeze.

Hardware and Plastics

Through-body stringing and a rock-solid Nighthawk bridge lend superb resonance and massive sustain to this high-concept guitar. The bridge, strap buttons, and vintage-style “Gibson Deluxe” tuners are all gold-plated, as are the pickup´s mounting rings and the neck pickup cover. Amber “top-hat” knobs lend an air of Gibson tradition, and the guitar wears no pickguard to obscure the beauty of its highly figured top.