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Old 11-10-2012, 10:31 AM   #1
Darkflame
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New and used: The ethical debate!

I was just reading the "I want an amp to sound like Tremonti" thread and fell on something Blktiger0 said.

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Originally Posted by Blktiger0
I disagree. I bought my amp new, because it had just come out and there wasn't a used market for it. I also like to know that I'm supporting the manufacterer. Buying and selling used is actually one of the current issues with the economy. People would prefer to get a deal and buy used (which is completely understandable) so they do. However, the manufacturer makes zero dollars off of that. That's why the auto industry here in the states was offering ridiulous offers for trade-ins for a new car. Then they could start taking those old used cars off of the market. In fact, with videogames, I think the statistic is that upwards of 90% of the sales for a game are made in the first 3 months, due to all sales after that being used, which is why comapnies are starting to require online passes to play online features, and why they started doing DLC, so that they could make money through those. I would even venture to say that this is one reason for using cheap components other than maximising initial profits. If your product doesn't last forever, then people will have to continue buying new ones. They key would be finding the balance between quality and happiness from the customer. Make it nice enough and durable enough to please the customer, while making it cheap enough and impermanent enough that it won't last too long.

Now, don't think I'm being holier than thou, eliteist, etc. I have bought many things used, and I understand the pro's and con's. I'm poor as hell, and have no option but used sometimes. I'm just saying not to dismiss buying new as something only for rich assholes or idiots. If it weren't for those people, you wouldn't be getting your awesome used deal, because there wouldn't be used gear. SOMEONE has to buy it new.

However, like Dave said, you can get some good deals going new as well. Not quite as cheap as used, usually, but things like B-stock, Scratch-n-dent, etc. are usually good deals, as well as sales that stores have. I'm not sure if refurbrished items would make the Manufacturer any money or not, but you can usually get good deals on those as well. The only problem there is WHY did it need refurb'ed?

Now, I really wanted to reply, but realized I was writing a super duper off topic reply.

Basically, I am 100% on that. I personally work in the video games industry and I can see how pirating hurts it. I've worked with companies such as THQ, which is going down very low right now, and when you work with the people that are going to get laid off and in their offices, it doesn't feel great... But that is getting off-topic again. There are many reasons and blablabla.

Basically, I just wanted to have a discussion about that. I happened to buy my most recent stuff used, but it was stuff that you could never find new anymore. Try finding a Marshall 6100lm new on the shelf. Obviously, sometimes, there are no other options.
But it's kind of similar to the "Buy canadian" for twice as expensive as "Buy the same product made in China" (I'm in Canada). Does knowing you help your economy justify paying a premium?

I know I always want the people who made the product I'm enjoying to receive my money, as a form of support. Which is why I never ever pirate video games, and which is why I buy my music as well. What about you guys? How do you feel about that issue?



TL;DR: Buying used hurts the manufacturer by not giving them any money, and it hurts them economically. Is that enough to keep you from buying used? How do you feel about that? What justifies buying used VS buying new besides the price?



(Note: this is just for a discussion, and I do hope I'm not starting a war, as we've all seen happen on here)
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:43 AM   #2
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I'll buy new when/if I really wanted/needed it that immediately for whatever reason: unavailability of it Used, it's so good for the price, etc. The few instances I bought gear New were when I had a coupon and/or the item was specially priced and/or I had to have it immediately.

This also applies to food.
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Old 11-10-2012, 10:45 AM   #3
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I guess the only thing that makes sense(for the manufacturer) is to make a product that is only as good as it's warranty, and then only offer the warranty to the original buyer. That might sound crazy or unethical itself, but it's already true for some things. For instance, I won't even consider buying a TV used anymore. It used to be a viable option, but LCD TVs are so much less durable than TVs used to be, and I've had several go out in the 4 years that I've owned one.

It's kind of sad that if a product is sturdy and reliable it actually hurts the company. But I guess the consumer creates those circumstances and the consumer pays for it as well.

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Old 11-10-2012, 10:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by W4RP1G
I guess the only thing that makes sense(for the manufacturer) is to make a product that is only as good as it's warranty, and then only offer the warranty to the original buyer. That might sound crazy or unethical itself, but it's already true for some things. For instance, I won't even consider buying a TV used anymore. It used to be a viable option, but LCD TVs are so much less durable than TVs used to be, and I've had several go out in the 4 years that I've owned one.

It's kind of sad that if a product is sturdy and reliable it actually hurts the company. But I guess the consumer creates those circumstances and the consumer pays for it as well.

That makes some great sense, and it goes along with the video games analogy with season passes and stuff that registers with the first user of the game copy.
I find it sucky though that it's a matter of warranty with guitars and amplifiers. Amps are reliable enough not to need a warranty, and for guitars, it's even more obvious, as they don't cover anything you can't fix yourself
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:01 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkflame
Basically, I am 100% on that. I personally work in the video games industry and I can see how pirating hurts it. I've worked with companies such as THQ, which is going down very low right now, and when you work with the people that are going to get laid off and in their offices, it doesn't feel great... But that is getting off-topic again. There are many reasons and blablabla.)

Not in any way advocating piracy but I have been known to go purchase a game and then immediately download a pirated version to avoid DRM. They kinda shoot themselves in a foot a bit with that one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by W4RP1G
LCD TVs are so much less durable than TVs used to be, and I've had several go out in the 4 years that I've owned one.

Get better TVs, We've had one for god knows how long and haven't had a single problem with it.

The problem I see with buying stuff new is that they don't give us a good reason to do it. With a couple of exceptions, the music stores around me don't like me just going to try things out before I make a purchase. Even though I'm there enough to know I will make the purchase once I'm happy with my choice. There's a couple of places that are very keen to rip me off too. And then there's the 'Australia Tax' we get around here, What I get on the used market is about what I'd be paying for new in the US.
Unpleasant customer experience + massive overpricing, really doesn't make me want to get new gear.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:04 AM   #6
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Buying used isn't flushing your money out of the economy, it is simply putting it back into the hands of a consumer rather than that of a firm. Because of this, we see a higher amount of consumer spending in the economy - this is the spending that is helping other firms that could be completely irrelevant to the first product's industry, but either way still boosting the economy.

I could theorise that if it weren't for a used market, many people wouldn't be able to buy the goods they want anyway because of the problem of a price which is too high, and so might stop buying the goods they wanted all together. And so we would see firms actually not making that much more money.

As well as this, the used market is a great way for firms to find out what old products they used to make to bring back in to production. For example, Fender reissue amps and vintage designed Gibson Les Paul's. Another great thing the used market is to firms is that it can be used to grow their popularity. If I find a TC electronic pedal going fairly cheap on Ebay I may go ahead and pick it up. If I really like it for reasons I cannot come to through watching a youtube demo, (e.g. build quality or a particularly well working sound in my chain) I may well go and buy other TC pedals that I can't find on Ebay, or perhaps my new likeness to their products will actually compel me to buy their pedals brand new - in the case of the Fanboy/girl.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:05 AM   #7
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Well, they could make amps really crappy, but the problem with that is people rely heavily on their gear when they are playing live. The company with the more reliable be gear would obviously become the first choice for gigging musicians, and subsequently develop a reputation among other musicians that would increase sales.

As for guitars, I don't know how they could deal with that. Perhaps make the warranty more useful? Even then I don't think that would affect the used market very much. But I can't say I really feel for guitar manufacturers, they seem to throw more and more guitars out there every year so they must be making money at it.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:13 AM   #8
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Buying used versus new is a matter of economics. People will buy a product when the value of the item equals the value of their money. This can come down to perceived value. In other words, I really like that shiny, new amplifier, but I don't think it's worth x dollars. However, I find a used one for y dollars, which meets my perceived value of the product and I buy it.

One also must weigh the perceived value of a warranty against the cost of the merchandise. When I purchase online, I frequently find returned items, which are a few hundred less than a brand new product. Problem is, they often won't have a warranty and I won't buy them. Why? Because I'm betting the product may fail, leaving me with an expensive paper weight. On the other hand, I've purchased items on auction sites that were very expensive brand new, but much cheaper used. Why? Because the price offset was great enough that, if it did fail, I could still justify repairing it myself, or sending it out for repair. Along that same vein, I've also bought items from Musician's Friend that were returned as defective. I bought them at a huge discount, knowing that I could likely repair them.

Darkflame mentioned that amps are reliable enough not to need a warranty. Not sure I'd agree with that. I bought a brand new Mesa Lonestar a few years back. The dealer had to order it, since he didn't have it in-stock - so it was never played in the store. Within a couple of weeks, a tube failed in it and Mesa sent me a replacement under warranty. Granted, it was an inexpensive tube, but still - the warranty covered it. Another example... My wife bought a Fender amp. We bought it brand new in the box. Got it home and it failed out-of-the-box. Warranty covered the replacement of the amp.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:18 AM   #9
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I agree that the manufacture doesn't make money on the used market. But many can not or will not pay the premium of new, others think new is the only way.

I like buying new gear when I can afford it, but my last few gear purchases have been used. An my next few purchases will also be used. I just can't justifuy spending $1500+ on a new head when I can get that same amp for $500-$700.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:22 AM   #10
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When I buy a used amp or guitar, the seller is usually using that money to buy something else.

Maybe something used or new.

Most of the guitar buying type people buy new. I learned that while working in a store.

The average forum savvy used buyer is not in the majority of guitar players.

I support the companies I like by recommending their products. Don't forget that when a given shopper is researching a purchase they may become one of the many lurkers here. They read our thoughts and posts and that does influence purchases of new products.

That said, I buy new and used depending on the circumstance.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:23 AM   #11
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Part of the rights of owning something is the right to sell it for whatever someone will pay, thats why vintage gear can be sold for 10 times more than it's worth, it just the way free market works. If selling used items wasn't allowed then it would hurt the economy because no one would invest in physical product.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:26 AM   #12
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IMO there are zero moral issues involved with buying used. Nada, none, zip. There is no logic to support it. If anything consumption of resources by the more privileged inhabitants of this planet would be a moral issue if you wanted to consider it. And that issue supports the idea that buying used is more moral.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:31 AM   #13
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Economics and morality...

This is gonna be good.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by KenG
Yes Luthiers like this guy deal in historical accuracy details that you can't even see.

Quote:
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good job, i'm just about sick of having to tear my guitars apart to put them back together with the right glue
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:33 AM   #14
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Give a ****? If I can't afford to buy it new I should go without? Well **** you, Jimmy.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:35 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fly135
IMO there are zero moral issues involved with buying used. Nada, none, zip. There is no logic to support it. If anything consumption of resources by the more privileged inhabitants of this planet would be a moral issue if you wanted to consider it. And that issue supports the idea that buying used is more moral.

So are you pro-used? couldn't tell from your wording.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:42 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathbard
Give a ****? Well **** you, Jimmy.

Yeah, the people that say stupid crap like "If you can't afford to buy it new you should go without" are the ones that either have money or are righteous assholes. I can't believe people actually think that. If I'm paying for used, that just means I'm buying an item for what I believe it's worth in it's current condition, if it's new, then I pay for new condition+warranty. If I'm okay with buying something in used condition no-one has any right to say I can't.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:43 AM   #17
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What about the guy selling the used item? He doesn't deserve my money - why exactly? What do you think he's going to do with it? Shove it up his arse? He's gonna spend it isn't he? There are more elements to an economy than just manufacturer to rich customer, there are entire other stratas.
I should care more about some rich multinational corporation than the little battler trying to make ends meet? Even if I want to give my money to a junky that's my ****ing business and anybody that doesn't like it can kiss my arse.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:44 AM   #18
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I don't think that I ever bought anything used. Not even a car...
I'm probably buying a used snowboard to learn on though. But gonna buy new if I dig it enough so yeah...I like having things new cause I like to screw them up myself, not have somebody do it before me. Where's the fun in that?
And it's awesome to look at a thing (a car, a guitar,...) and go ''man so many good memories'' or think about all the shit you've been through while using the item and not think about somebody else having sex in the back seat of your first car before you got it.
And I recently sold my first car which was passed on to me by my bro (this is different...it's family ;P ) and I still wonder who bought it and if the new owner appreciates it as much as I did.
you know...little things like that.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:49 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cathbard
What about the guy selling the used item? He doesn't deserve my money - why exactly? What do you think he's going to do with it? Shove it up his arse? .... anybody that doesn't like it can kiss my arse.

Arse.

You like it.
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good job, i'm just about sick of having to tear my guitars apart to put them back together with the right glue
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:49 AM   #20
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@Kozlic: yeah but that's different, you're doing it by choice. You aren't trying to convince (read: force) others to buy new. Everyone should have the choice depending on what they want out of a product.
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