Led Zeppelin – The Complete Jimmy Page Gear Guide

Well…since Led Zeppelin is a very topical subject right now, makes sense publishing an online guide to Jimmy Page’s gear…since he’s one of the best and most influential guitarists ever.  Find out more about his pedals and setup…

The enduring image of Jimmy Page is of him with a low slung Gibson Les Paul or EDS-1275 Double Neck and Marshall amps. But the first Zeppelin album, along with the solo from “Stairway To Heaven”, was recorded with a 1958 Fender Telecaster that was a gift from his Yardbirds band mate Jeff Beck and a Supro amp.

At this time he was also using a “Black Beauty” Les Paul with 3 humbuckers and a Bigsby vibrato (which was stolen in 1971) but it wasn’t til the recording of their second album (Led Zeppelin II) he moved to the Les Pauls and Marshalls killer combo he’s better remembered for. You can actually watch some good You Tube footage of the Yardbirds where Page plays the 58 Tele. click image…

Fender Telecaster '58 psychedelic colors

Let’s have a good look at his gear now, chronologically.

EARLY DAYS GEAR:

Page’s first ever guitar: 1957 Selmer Grazioso, a Stratocaster copy. From an October 1974 Interview
“My first guitar worth talking about was a Stratocaster. Then I had something called a Grazzioso–don’t know where it came from. It was probably a Czechoslovakian version of Fender, that’s what it looked like anyway.”

The Black Beauty Les Paul was purchased in 1962 for £185. Used for most of Jimmy’s sessionwork (1963-1966), and was taken on tour from Jan. 1970 through April 1971, when it was stolen at the airport between Sept. 3 or 4, 1971. Jimmy Page placed an ad in Rolling Stone with reward, but it was never recovered.

Great looking guitar, truly deserves the “beauty” on its name. Epiphone makes a very popular version of it, though without bigsby. View Epiphone Black Beauty

But, even better: Gibson Custom has released the Jimmy Page Signature Black Beauty, which comes in 3 versions:

His only FX pedal was the Maestro FZ-1 Fuzztone.

YARDBIRDS DAYS:

Its here that the Jimmy Page legend truly starts, when he became one of the original “Guitar Heroes” of the Swingin’ London, and where the seeds of Led Zeppelin were first planted. Gear such as guitars and FX pedals used then were to be later used inLed Zeppelin.

1960s Epiphone Rivoli Bass EB232: this cool semi-hollow bass probably didn’t belong to Page, as it was played by all the other Yardbirds bassists before and after him. Today, for those who want a similar bass, a good option is the Epiphone Jack Casidy signature model.

 

1967 Vox Phantom XII: Studio-only guitar. Used on Little Games with Yardbirds, Thank You from Led Zeppelin II.

1959 Fender Telecaster: Page’s first “classic” guitar. It was a gift from Jeff Beck in 1966, and originally decorated with 4 silver circles, which were  stripped down and handpainted by Jimmy Page in late 1966. Then, it was stripped down again, painted “Botswana Brown” and fitted with a Parsons B-Bender in 1976. Temporarily swapped rosewood neck to maple neck in April-May 1977.

  • Specs:

    Body: Single-cutaway slab ash
    Finish:(originally) Olympic White
    Neck: One-piece, rounded “U” shape maple neck with rosewood fingerboard
    Frets: 21
    Bridge: Three paired brass adjustable bridge saddles
    Pickguard: White
    Pickups: Flat pole in bridge position / chrome-covered at neck position
    Controls: Two chrome knobs (volume and “blend”) / three-position toggle switch

  • Parsons B-bender – a device that allows for “pedal-steel” effects. The device is set into the body and connects the upper guitar strap knob to the B string. One pulls on the strap, causing the bender to pull on the B string thereby raising its pitch.

    dnelctro.jpg

    1959 Danelectro - Used in the Yardbirds with White Summer (Apr. 1967-Jul. 1968) and in Led Zeppelin and beyond on White Summer/Black Mountain Side, Kashmir and In My Time Of Dying. Created from parts from two guitars. The Danelectro DC 59 was reissued recently, and is definitely great value for money (retailing £169!!!)

  • Specs:

    Body: Double cutaway, masonite top and bottom, plywood frame
    Finish: Ebony
    Neck: Hard maple with rosewood fingerboard
    Frets: 21
    Bridge: Quan Badass
    Tuners: Vintage “D” style
    Pickups: Lipstick style, brass with chrome plating
    Controls: Dual concentric tone and volume

  • From a July 1977 Interview
    “…I did use it in the latter days. I used it onstage for ‘White Summer’. I used a special tuning for that; the low string down to B then A, D, G, A, and D. It’s like a modal tuning; a sitar tuning in fact. “

    Amplification

  • Vox AC-30From a July 1977 Interview:“(I used Vox) AC-30 (amps). They’ve held up consistently well. …..You could get these one’s with special treble boosters on the back which is what I had.”
  • Fender Dual Showman
  • Jimmy Page’s use of black face Fender Dual Showman amplifiers and Fender 2×15 cabinets in mid to late 1967.
  • Effects

  • Sola Sound Tonebender MKII
  • Used from 1966 to 1971
  • Re-worked by Roger Mayer to boost output and midrange
  • Vox Wah-Wah Pedal
  • Used from 1966 to present
  • Modified by Roger Mayer
  • Getting the Yardbirds days tone on the cheap:

    A Fender Highway 1 is a good, affordable option for Page-wannabes…as well as the Fender 60’s Reissue Telecaster or the Classic Player Baja Telecaster, despite the latter maple fretboard.

    FX: the Vox Wah reissue is still a great choice, of course, and the Vox AC-15 is great and much cheaper than the AC-30 if you can’t afford it. Best getting a simple, no-nonsense fuzz, such as the BBE Fuzz. Tonebenders (originals and copy) are very expensive, but if you can get one, great! It’s good to point out the new Boss FZ-5 fuzz, which is said to nail the maestro fuzz sound very well…worth a look! I got a Vox Tonebender (reissue) fuzz and it’s great, but the Electro Harmonix Double Muff sounds better (again, it’s a very simple fuzz with just two knobs, which in “mode 2″ works just like those classic fuzzboxes: one knob controls volume, the other controls fuzz. It’s so unbelievably cheap, but so great, definitely the best option for fuzzboxes these days!)

    LED ZEPPELIN GEAR: the stuff legend is made of…

    Guitars   

     
     

  • 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard (No. 1)
  • Purchased from Joe Walsh in April 1969 for £500.
  • Used on-stage since April 1969 (Fillmore shows) and in-studio from Led Zeppelin II on
  • Might be a 1958 model
  • Specs:

    Body: Single sharp cutaway Mahogany, bound carved maple top
    Finish: Cherry Sunburst
    Neck: Mahogany w/ rosewood fingerboard and pearl trapezoid inlays, shaved to an eliptical profile (prior to JP’s ownership)
    Frets: 22
    Headstock: Blackface w/ holly veneer/pearl logo inlay
    Tuners: Gold Grovers
    Hardware: Nickel
    Pickups: 2 covered humbucker PAF, original bridge PAF changed, firstly to a T-top, then later to a custom wound Duncan, and has been covered/uncovered at various times
    Controls: 2 volume/2 tone, Pull-pot switching,although there is heavy debate as to whether the pull pot on #1 is really for coil split (as on the signature model) or for phase switching & 3-position switch

  • 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard (No. 2)
  • Serial number is 91703.
  • Features a pair of spring-loaded buttons painted white under the scratch plate offering new pickup configurations. One of the buttons puts the pickup into series or parallel and the other offers regular or out-of-phase tones. Installed in 1980.[diagram]
  • Specs:

    Body: Single sharp cutaway Mahogany, bound carved maple top
    Neck: Mahogany w/ rosewood fingerboard and pearl trapezoid inlays, shaved to replicate the profile of No. 1
    Finish: Cherry Sunburst
    Frets: 22
    Headstock: Blackface w/ holly veneer/pearl logo inlay
    Tuners: Nickel Grovers
    Hardware: Nickel
    Pickups: 2 Double-white covered humbucker PAF, Pickup covers on-again/off-again over the years, usually (but not always)in opposition to No. 1
    Controls: 2 volume/2 tone, 3-position switch

  • This is the guitar that Roger Giffin copied when in at Gibson’s custom shop that became Jimmy’s Signature Les Paul series (pic middle right). On the now discontinued signature guitars the series/parallel and phase switches were moved to push/pull pots and having a compound radius fingerboard. Gibson Custom makes remarkable reissues of the Les Paul ’58 and Les Paul ’59. Worth every penny! The best choices for the true Page sound…

  • Gibson EDS-1275 Doubleneck
  • Used on-stage from March 1971 to the present.
  • Serial number is 911117.
  • Specs:

    Body: Mahogany
    Finish: Heritage cherry
    Neck: Maple
    Fingerboard: Rosewood with trapezoid inlays
    Frets: 21
    Bridge: Tune-o-matic
    Tuners: Kluson tulip-style
    Pickups: Two 490R Alnico magnet humbuckers and two 490T Alnico magnet humbuckers
    Controls: 2 Volume/2 Tone, Two three-position toggle switches (One for pickup selection for the necks, located on lower horn and one as a neck selector [upper, lower, or both], located between bridges)

  • 1973 Gibson Les Paul Standard
  • Used on-stage from July 1973 to the present.
  • A Parsons/White B-Bender was added post-Zeppelin and Jimmy thought it ruined the tone because of all the wood that was removed
  • Specs:

    Body: Single sharp cutaway solid mahogany, bound carved maple top
    Finish: Cherry red(custom color)
    Neck: Mahogany
    Fingerboard: Rosewood w/ pearl trapezoid inlay
    Frets: 22
    Headstock: Blackface with pearl logo inlay
    Tuners: Kluson, 3-per-side
    Hardware: Nickel
    Pickguard: Raised cream acrylic
    Pickups: 2 Seymour Duncans
    Controls: 2 volume/2 tone controls, 3-position switch

  • 1964 Fender Stratocaster
  • Used on-stage for Over The Hills And Far Away on some dates at Earls Court and In The Evening at Knebworth and the 1980 European Tour.
  • Specs:

    Body: Asymmetrical double-cutaway ash body, contoured back and lower bass bout
    Finish: Lake Placid Blue (metallic)
    Fretboard: Brazilian rosewood with clay dots
    Frets: 22
    Tuners: Single-line Kluson
    Pickups: 3- L-Series 3 single-coil pickups
    Controls: 1 Volume/2 tone controls, 3-position switch

  • 1957 Fender Stratocaster
  • Seen at Sol Studios
  • Used in a jam at a Bad Company concert on May 23, 1976
  • 1966 Fender Telecaster
  • Used on-stage on All My Love on the 1980 European Tour
  • Specs:

    Body: Single-cutaway slab ash with Olympic White finish
    Neck: One-piece, rounded “U” shape maple neck and fingerboard
    Frets: 21
    Bridge: Three paired brass adjustable bridge saddles
    Pickguard: Blond
    Pickups: Flat pole in bridge position / chrome-covered at neck position
    Controls: Two chrome knobs (volume and “blend”) / three-position toggle switch

  • 1965 Fender XII
  • Used in-studio on Thank You and Stairway To Heaven
  • Specs:

    Body: Solid, 3-piece alder
    Finish: Sunburst
    Neck: One piece maple, bolt-on
    Fingerboard: Brazilian rosewood, pearloid dot markers
    Frets: 21
    Bridge: Leo Fender bridge design with an individual saddle for each string, allowing for precise intonation
    Tuners: Chrome, enclosed Fender
    Pickups: Two Fender split-coil
    Controls: Volume/Tone, 4-way rotary selector

  • 1977 Gibson RD Artist

  • Used on-stage on Misty Mountain Hop at Knebworth in Aug. 1979
  • Specs:

    Body: Single cutaway asymmetrical hourglass style maple
    Finish: Natural
    Neck: Maple
    Fingerboard: Ebony with block inlay
    Frets: 22
    Headstock: Multibound with pearl stylized f-hole/logo inlay
    Hardware: Gold
    Pickups: 2 Covered Humbuckers
    Controls: Active 2 volume/2 tone, mini switch

  • Gibson ES5 Switchmaster Hollowbody

  • Seen at Manticore Studios in Jan. 1977
  • Used in Death Wish II soundtrack in 1982
  • note: Jimmy Page used a white ES5 at the O2 arena, for “In My Time Of Dying”.

  • Gibson J-200 
  • Borrowed from Big Jim Sullivan
  • Used in-studio on Led Zeppelin
  • Used on White Summer/Black Mountain Side on the Julie Felix Show Apr. 26, 1970
  • Specs:

    Body: Spruce top, figured maple back, sides and neck
    Finish: Vintage Sunburst
    Frets: 14/20 fret bound rosewood fingerboard with pearl crown inlay
    Bridge: Rosewood “closed” moustache with pearl block inlays, black pearl dot pins; Tune-o-matic adjustable metal bridge
    Headstock: Bound with pearl plant/logo inlay
    Pickguard: Black with engraved floral pattern
    Tuners: Three-per-side gold Grover with pearl buttons

  • Harmony Sovereign H-1260
  • Used in-studio on Led Zeppelin III and Untitled and on-stage from June 1970 to June 1972
  • Giannini GWSCRA12-P Craviola
  • Seen on-stage from Aug. 1970 to June 1972
  • Specs:

    Body: Sitka Spruce top and Rosewood sides and back
    Fingerboard: Ebony with Herringbone inlay dots
    Frets: 21
    Headstock: Rosewood
    Tuners: Gold-plated

  • 1971 Martin D28
  • Used in-studio and on-stage from March 1971 on.
  • Fitted with a Barcus-Berry DISQOS Soundboard Transducer pickup
  • Specs:

    Body: Sitka Spruce top and E. Indian Rosewood sides and back
    Fingerboard: Ebony with Herringbone inlay dots
    Frets: 20
    Headstock: E. Indian Rosewood / Raised Gold Foil Logo
    Tuners: Gotoh Chrome w/ Large Knobs

  • 1962 Gibson Everly Brothers Acoustic Guitar
  • Given as a gift by Ron Wood in 1974
  • Was not used in-studio or on-stage
  • Specs:

    Body: spruce top and maple back/sides
    Finish: Black
    Neck: Mahogany with Pearl star inlays on a rosewood fingerboard
    Pickguard: Dual extended tortoise

  • 1956 Gretsch Chet Atkins Model 6120 Archtop
  • Specs:

    Body: Single cutaway 16″ x 2.75″ maple body with f-holes with black and white binding
    Finish: Gretsch orange paint
    Neck: Rosewood fretboard with “Neo-Classic” half-moon markers; “zero” fret
    Nut: Bone nut
    Bridge: Nickel-plated ‘V’-shaped Bigsby B-6 tailpiece with pivoting arm vibrola and compensated aluminum Bigsby bridge
    Tuners: Grover StaTite
    Pickguard: Gold, with Gretsch and Chet Atkins signpost in black
    Pickups: Two Filter’Tron pickups
    Controls: volume control for each pickup, master volume, tone and pickup-selector switch

  • 1920 Gibson A2 Mandolin
  • Used onstage from April 1977 to July 1977 for The Battle Of Evermore
  • Specs:

    Body: Carved spruce top, birch sides and carved back
    Finish: Sheraton Brown
    Neck: 3-piece mahogany / walnut joins body at 10th fret
    Fingerboard: Rosewood with pearl dot inlays
    Frets: 20
    Headstock: Paddle-shaped peghead has “The Gibson” logo inlaid in pearl
    Bridge: Ebony
    Tuners: Open-gear 4-in-a-line with oval ivoroid buttons
    Pickguard: Tortoise (removed)

  • Alembic Series I Bass
  • Used in-studio
  • Fender Precision Bass Used in-studio
  • Vega 5-String Banjo
  • Owned by John Paul Jones
  • Used in-studio on Gallows Pole
  • Fender 10-String 800 Pedal Steel
  • Used in-studio on Your Time Is Gonna Come and Tangerine
  • Amplification

  • Supro 1690T Coronado
  • Jimmy’s in-studio “secret weapon”. Used on the first album and randomly with other studio albums
  • Modified with an on/off switch for tremolo, boosting gain
  • Features 1×12″ speaker, modified from the original 2×10″ configuration
  • 1965 Fender Super Reverb
  • Specs:

    Output: 40 watts
    Speakers: 2×10″ Fender
    Tubes: 6L6 and 12AX7
    Effects: Reverb, Tremolo
    Inputs: 4
    Footswitch: On/Off for effects
    Covering: Black tolex with silver grille-cloth

  • 1967 Arbiter Power One Hundred
  • Specs:

    Output: 100 watts
    Inputs: 4
    Controls: Individual volume for each channel, Bass, Treble, Master Volume, Bypass switch, On/Off Switch

  • 1966 Hiwatt Custom 50
  • Specs:

    Output: 100 watts
    Inputs: 4
    Controls: Individual volume, treble and bass for each channel, On/Off switch

  • Hiwatt Custom 100 DR118
  • Used on-stage from Jan. 1970 through Sept. 1971
  • Controls: Normal Volume, Brilliance Volume, Bass, Treble, Middle, Presence, Master Volume
  • Univox UX-1501
  • Used on the Summer US 1972 Tour
  • Specs:

    Watts: 140
    Inputs: 2 Guitar, 2 Bass, 2 Mixer
    Controls: 2 Volume and Gain, Bass, Middle, Treble, Presence
    Switches: Power, Standby and Hi-Boost
    Outputs: 4 Speaker

  • Univox UX-1516
  • 6×12 speaker cabinets, loaded with Celestion speakers
  •  

  • Orange
  • Used on-stage from Aug. 7, 1971 through the 1973 US Tour. Used at the O2 Arena Concert as well. 
  • Used with the theremin
  • Matamps were 200 watts
  • 4×12 cabinets used 30-watt Celestions
  • Orange Basketweave cloth
  • Marshall
  • SLP-1959 Amps were modded from 100-watt to 180-watt in 1985
  • Cabinets w/ standard Celestion 30-watt speakers date from 1969 to 1973
  • Unknown Cabinets (possibly Marshall)
  • Seen on-stage in 1971 and 1972
  • Used by Jimmy for guitars and used by John Paul for keyboards
  • Effects:

  • Univox UD-50 Uni-Drive
  • Used on-stage in some dates on the Return To The Clubs 1971 tour
  • Used to drive the treble end of the Marshall amps to the original Metal crunch
  • Maestro Echoplex EP-3
  • Jimmy’s exclusive onstage echo machine
  • Modified by Pete Cornish in 1993
  • Eventide H949 Harmonizer
  • Used on-stage for Jimmy’s noise solo in 1977-79, also used in 1976 in recording Bonzo’s Montreux on high feedback setting
  • 16-bit digital processing and a 400ms delay time with 15kHz bandwidth delay, pitch-shift, time-reversal, time-compression, flanging, chorus
  • MXR M-101 Phase 90
  • Used in-studio for The Wanton Song and Achilles Last Stand
  • Used on-stage from 1977 to 1980
  • Speed knob varies rate of phase sweep
  • MXR Blue Box
  • Used in-studio to provide the bass octaving in Fool In The Rain
  • Output knob sets total output gain
  • Blend knob adjusts ratio of dry (clean) with wet (effects) signal
  • Theremin
  • Used on-stage from April 26, 1969 to the present
  • Used with a Maestro Echoplex and Orange amps and cabinets
  • Gizmotron
  • The Gizmotron was a hexaphonic mechanical string bowing device invented by Lol Creme and Kevin Godley of 10CC. It never took off and was some kind of financial disaster. It has been described by Jimmy as a ‘hurdy gurdy type of thing’. It existed in two versions: 4 or 6 strings (bass or guitar). The Gizmotron works by having a rubber wheel for each string and a key for each wheel, such that pressing down on the key engages the wheel with a rotating shaft and the guitar string. The shaft rotates the wheel which then excites the string. Jimmy may have used it on Carouselambra and In The Evening to produce the drone sound.
  • Other

  • Strings
  • Electrics: Ernie Ball Super Slinky; Acoustics: Ernie Ball Earthwoods
  • Herco Flex 75 Picks
  • Heavy gauge, gray, standard shape, textured surface for positive grip
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    Album-by-album gear

    Led Zeppelin I

    • GUITARS: 1958 Telecaster, 10-string Fender 800 pedal steel, Gibson J200 acoustic
    • AMPS: Supro

    Led Zeppelin II

    • GUITARS: 1959 Les Paul, Vox 12-string
    • AMPS: 100-watt Marshall, Vox solid-state

    Led Zeppelin III

    • GUITARS: Harmony Sovereign acoustic, Martin acoustic, ’59 Les Paul
    • AMP: 100-watt Marshall

    Led Zeppelin IV

    • GUITARS: Fender electric 12-string, Les Paul, Telecaster
    • AMP: 100-watt Marshall, Supro

    HOUSES OF THE HOLY

    • GUITARS: Les Paul, Fender 12-string electric, Stratocaster
    • AMP: 100-watt Marshall

    PHYSICAL GRAFFITI

    • GUITARS: Les Paul, Danelectro, Stratocaster
    • AMPS: 100-watt Marshall

    PRESENCE

    • GUITARS: Les Paul, Fender Stratocaster
    • AMPS: 100-watt Marshall

    IN THROUGH THE OUT DOOR

    • GUITARS: Les Paul, Stratocaster, Telecaster, Gibson EDS-1275
    • AMPS: 100-watt Marshall

    info taken from, amongst other sources, http://www.led-zeppelin.org

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    ~ by dolphinblog on September 21, 2007.

    6 Responses to “Led Zeppelin – The Complete Jimmy Page Gear Guide”

    1. [...] In case you missed it first time round, here’s a link to our Jimmy Page Gear Guide [...]

    2. The ‘unknown cabinets’ shown with the horns are Marshalls.

    3. [...] View Info on Jimmy Page Gear [...]

    4. I thought he used the 25 watt Greenback Speakers?

    5. On the Gibson ES-1275, it is erroneous to say 490 R and 490 T. Gibson used the same pickup in both the neck and bridge positions on every guitar back then except a 175. There wasn’t any “R” or “T”. A Hiwatt Custom 50 has 50 watts, not 100. Jimmy’s Hiwatt amps were most definitely NOT from 1966. They were from a much later period. The 1973 Gibson Les Paul Standard actually started life as a Les Paul Deluxe. It was routed for the larger pickups, thereby turning it into a Standard. Gibson used to sell the larger humbuckers as a set, but they only came with black mounting rings in the early 70’s. This explains why the red Les Paul does not have the typical all creme-colored plastic parts as on a real Standard.

    6. […] Plexi stuff front he live shows. IV has a lot of fuzziness to the sound. Check out these sites: Led Zeppelin – The Complete Jimmy Page Gear Guide | Guitar Player Gear Guide Jimmy Page Equipment Led Zeppelin https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xI6rjp_Z1DY Home – Whole Lotta […]

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