Gibson ES-175: the hollowbody electric archtop that was a Gibson first

Gibson ES-175
(Image credit: Future)

Following its release in 1949, the 175 proved to be one of Gibson’s most popular designs. Author Adrian Ingram calls it “Gibson’s most successful electro-acoustic guitar” in his book The Gibson ES175: Its History And Players, quoting an estimated 37,000 having been sold within its first half-century of production alone. 

Like many classic guitars, the 175’s essential layout didn’t change a great deal after it came off the drawing board – its dynamic sound, comfy ergonomics and understated cool ticked all the right boxes from the start. This timeless design has consistently won guitar players over throughout the decades, and although it is perhaps more strongly associated with jazz virtuosos such as Joe Pass and Herb Ellis, it’s just as likely to be spotted in the hands of rock guitarists like Steve Howe and John Frusciante.

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Rod Brakes

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Guitar WorldGuitar Player and MusicRadar in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.