Gibson unveils SG Diablo Premium Plus

Take a look at the Gibson SG Diablo Premium Plus, a new jazzed-up high-performance variation of the firm's much-loved workhorse, featuring a AAA grade maple-topped body, 24-fret neck and high-end hardware.

Gibson says the Diablo Premium Plus has been borne out of a desire to give "the hallowed SG all the respect I deserves" and it's primarily set about doing this by topping the traditional mahogany SG body with luxuriously-flamed grade AAA maple.

However, the US guitar giant is clearly keen that this guitar be seen as more than just a standard SG in a nice jacket and has kitted the new model with branded components throughout, including Grover tuners, a PLEK-cut Corian nut and TonePros Tune-o-matic bridge.

On top of that Gibson has loaded the Diablo with BurstBucker Pro Rhythm and Lead pickups, as featured on the latest Les Paul Standard model, and stripped out the control section, rolling it back to a three-way toggle switch with just one volume and one tone knob.

SG fans will also notice the 24-fret neck (as opposed to the usual 22) and the repositioned volume knob, which has been placed nearer the bridge to aid "pinky swells", as the firm puts it.

The SG Diablo Premium Plus has a US MSRP of $2,499 (approx. £1,596) and is available in Iced Tea, Manhattan Midnight and Trans Black.

Check out the full press release below and browse the gallery to see all three available finishes.

PRESS RELEASE: Right from its arrival in 1961, Gibson's SG was often seen as a more austere brother to the Les Paul Standard. It rocked hard with the same pickups and hardware, and became a genuine icon as a result, make no mistake, but with its thinner all-mahogany body and plainer finish options, the SG sometimes didn't seem to have the same dress sense as its predecessor. Now Gibson USA gives the hallowed SG all the respect it deserves with the SG Diablo Premium Plus. I

n addition to being designed for optimum performance in the hands of today's hard-rocking players, this SG is also dressed in a carved Grade-AAA maple top with luscious flame beneath a selection of burst and transparent finishes, bringing the undisputed beauty of the finest Les Paul 'Bursts to the archetypal modern styling of this double-horned beast. With a pair of Gibson's finest humbucking pickups, high-performance hardware from TonePros and Grover, a full 24-frets for optimum lead playing (two more than the standard SG fingerboard), and your choice of high-gloss Manhattan Midnight (blue burst), Ice Tea Burst or Trans Black finish—all in genuine hand-sprayed nitrocellulose lacquer, of course—it's one of the fiercest sounding and looking SGs ever to come screaming down the pike.

The cornerstone of the SG Diablo Premium Plus's thick, meaty tone still begins with the traditional light, resonant mahogany that gave birth to the first SGs in 1961, but Gibson USA cranks the style up several notches by adding a highly figured Grade-AAA maple top to the package.

In addition to its absolutely stunning looks, the result also tweaks the tonal formula slightly, adding snap and clarity to the mahogany's depth and warmth. The SG Diablo Premium Plus's glued-in mahogany neck is carved to a slim but comfortably rounded profile that measures .800 inches at the 1st fret and .900 inches at the 12th, and is topped with a one-piece Grade-A rosewood fingerboard extended to the 24-fret length that many modern players prefer.

Classic trapezoid inlays link it visually to both SG and Les Paul Standards of the past, while the body's lack of pickguard ensures nothing gets in the way of the top's gorgeous flame. The PLEK-cut Corian nut and 17-degree back angled headstock enhance sustain, while the traditional Gibson neck specs of a 1-11/16 inches width at the nut and a 12 inch fingerboard radius ensure a superb playing feel.

The SG Diablo Premium Plus takes it all to the tonal max through a pair of Gibson USA's finest pickups. The BurstBucker Pro Rhythm in the neck position and BurstBucker Pro Lead in the bridge are both made with genuine Alnico V magnets and wound with enamel-coated 42 AWG wire to provide all the depth and bite of vintage PAF humbuckers, but are wax potted to withstand high volume levels without unwanted feedback squeal.

They are routed through a simplified control section with a three-way switch and master volume and tone pots, both with chromed knurled-steel knobs for a hot-rodded look and a firm grip, with volume positioned for easy pinky swells. A barrel-style output jack keeps the look sleek.

Other high-performance features include a lock-down TonePros Tune-o-matic bridge and stopbar tailpiece set for improved resonance and sustain and no dropped parts during string changes, and a set of locking Grover tuners with chrome kidney buttons and a super efficient 18:1 gear ratio.

For looks, tone, and playing feel, the SG Diablo Premium Plus takes the double-cutaway guitar into the next dimension, and gives the humble SG the respect it has long deserved. Check it out now at your authorized Gibson dealer.

Every guitar includes a Diablo hardshell case, owner's manual, truss-rod tool and adjustment literature, and Gibson's Limited Lifetime Warranty and 24/7/365 customer support.

Information taken from official press release, for more visit Gibson

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Matthew Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar,, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.