Fake replicas of effect pedals, amps and guitars

Ask the DudeUnfortunately, our world is not always good. And in the music business also it is valid: as soon as there is something valuable, there will be falsified copies of it. But how can experts identify fakes?

Old Gibson Les Paul guitars sometimes obtain prices of more than one hundred thousand Euro. Marshall amps also can be pretty expensive and legendary effect pedals like the Klon Centaur are traded at prices of thousands of Euro. It is valid: everything that can be manufactured, can be faked. Mostly, the forgers only attach importance to some obvious visual aspects and not to the quality of an instrument. Otherwise, there would be enough 59s Gibson Les Pauls for everyone.

Gibson Les Paul

Even for skilled eyes it is sometimes difficult to identify the fakes because the forgers are mostly experts too.
Frequently, the very little details reveal da fake Gibson Les Paul: a slightly variation of the lettering, a small deviation of the pegheads shape, the depth of the stamped in serial number, the binding, the bridge, the toggle switch or truss rod cover, the drillings and the lacquering. Unfortunately, these little details can only be identified with an original Les Paul besides.

Fender Stratocaster

Regarding a Fender Stratocaster, in my honest opinion, it is even harder to identify a fake guitar because even the Originals are made up of single parts of a modular construction system.
Because of this fact, forgers can also use single original parts what complicates the identification of a fake even more.

Klon Centaur

One of the most expensive effect pedals on the second hand marked is the Klon Centaur. For some time past, not only the circuit is copied, but there are also enclosures, made in China, which look almost like the Original. Only the edges are rounded a bit more. I would not be surprised when one or the other Klon Centaur Clone has been sold as Original. The profit margin relating to the parts might be enormous and thereby this pedal could be more interesting for the forgers than guitars.

Marshall amps

Visual aspects are also suitable to debunk a fake Marshall amp. The Tolex of the cabinet, the material of the grill cloth, the screws at the cabinet and the lettering can provide useful hints. As well as the used speaker of a Box or a Combo. An engineer might also be able to identify a fake by looking at the parts on the circuit board.


If you are willing to spend a lot of money for your dream vintage amp or a desired old guitar it may is worth it to consult an expert before you get an alleged bargain and fall for a scam.

If you are not sure if the offer you have found is a good or bad deal, don’t hesitate and contact me – I help you gladly.

By the way, not every good offer needs to be a fake. Especially modified old guitars and amplifiers can be cheap and can be re-prepared with some effort. Mostly, these treasures sound remarkably good because they have been used quite intensive and with pleasure. Or they have been used quite intensive and with pleasure because they sound remarkably good – even an expert will be unable to evaluate…