Electric Hollow Body Archtop guitar
Maple and spruce body, maple neck
Three New York single-coil pickups
The Emperor was Epiphone’s main pre-war archtop guitar. It was launched in 1936 and was intended to compete directly with Gibson’s flagship SJ-400. In 1950 this model was offered with a Venetian cutaway and the word “Regent” was added to the name. Two years later, an electric version was released, named Zephyr Emperor. The Zephyr Emperor Regent was the most luxurious electric guitar the company would ever manufacture. It had all the bountiful features of its acoustic counterpart: seven-layered plywood binding on the front and back, a multi-layered plywood binding around the f-holes, a headstock decorated with vine-inlays and the gold-plated Frequensator- tailpiece.
The electronics were also notable: the three New York single coil pickups could be controlled using the six switches, and any combination of the three pickups was possible, except all three at once.