I bought this Gibson SGJ in 2013. I was attracted to it for its 24 fret neck & the satin finish; Gibson's traditional, lacquered neck finish, in all due respect, kills good wood. When I was at Swee Lee's Bras Basah showroom, many people who passed me by while I was testing it (before buying, of course) were equally interested in this model due to its price. It's in the $800 range & proved to be one of the most affordable Gibsons around. Until today, what makes a good Gibson, remains subjective so the chaps who deliberated on it must have known the brand name in great depth because they said: 1) Entry level price equals entry level Gibson 2) The weight is wrong, the lacquer would make a difference 3) 2 more frets for an SG killed the tone...
Who were these people? Majority of them were mid-lifers, given the amount of white hair & wrinkles on them, I'd say a good number of them were carrying a senior citizen fare card in their pockets. Then again, I might be wrong but the comments they made clearly reflected a lack of respect. I'm not a Gibson fan to begin with but I understand where they are coming from in terms guitar craftsmanship & respect whatever atrocities they detailed their contemporary instruments with. The SGJ here might be a little off when it comes to tone with regards to an SG Standard but it remains reputable in terms of QC. In fact, it was very well made for the price. We can definitely get round the Gibson tone if we dislike what we hear (replace pickups, get effects pedals, etc.) but to say that it's way off due to some revised attributes, is a little disrespectful.
A year on, I purchased another SGJ simply because the reputable QC was in tact & the price, well, it became a little more affordable. Gibson somehow managed a downward revision for this model (price-wise) & in my opinion, it did good for those who are trying to get to know the brand name. It might not be a flagship model but it served its purpose as a bridging model.
There's nothing to be ashamed of when one invests in a more affordable instrument. Disregard others' opinion when you know what you are dealing with in person. How should it be, a $5K guitar that sounds very crappy or its more affordable version sounding like how it should be for your musical needs?