I ordered an EC256 gold top thru a catalog at work where we can use bonus points. I've since looked up other things about the guitar indicating it may be artificially "aged." I'm so praying that isn't true because I consider that just too cheesy to be seen playing on stage with. The catalog just showed it as a gold top without aging. UPDATE: It showed up later today and is not aged as I had feared. It plays very well and early indications are this should be a very nice guitar. Great frets and looks like a very good buy for the money. Thanks ESP!!!