#1
I know it's a stupid question, but somehow I fail to see the answer.

Why does it seem that everyone leans towards vintage and vintage-style equipment?
Why do companies reissue 40 year old designs and market them as being better than their current line of products?
Why do people spend tons of money on old guitars, amps, pedals and even new-old-stock tubes?
What is so appealing about playing a guitar or amp that's older than your dad?

Music has moved forward since then. People want modern equipment with a contemporary sound. Sure, some of the old stuff sounds great, but if you play modern music, why do you want something that sounds vintage?

Please don't say anything like "o bcuz bak then teh amp manufactururz were teh dedic8ted to gettin teh gud tonez". That's not true. They built amps to earn money, just like they do now.

So, why is "vintage" such a good thing?
#2
Because a lot of people want to recreate vintage tones.

Not everybody wants to play contemparary stuff.
#3
Quote by willieturnip
Because a lot of people want to recreate vintage tones.

Not everybody wants to play contemparary stuff.

But it surely can't be EVERYBODY

Every guitar store I've been to recently stocks Metal-oriented guitars and vintage- or indie-oriented tube amps. And Line 6 Spiders.
#5
Why fix something that isn't broken? Also, a lot of things that were made in the past are of higher quality (not made in china).
#6
Because currently the guitar companies tend to use more cheap materials, lowering the quality. I think.
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De nada más

#7
maybe its just the word 'vintage' that sells the product. people hear 'it's a vintage model' and they think 'hmm if its vintage then it must be good even though i have no idea what difference it will make with sound or looks'

when i hear 'vintage' i picture an oldish gibson lp with the finish slightly fading which turns me on a little...
#8
Quote by sashki
But it surely can't be EVERYBODY

Every guitar store I've been to recently stocks Metal-oriented guitars and vintage- or indie-oriented tube amps. And Line 6 Spiders.


key word-a lot
idk really, to me its a gimmick.
But if its TRULY vintage(not a remake), than people want those just because there one of a kind and crap like that.
I wouldnt buy a replica of a vintage strat cuz it was a replica of a vintage strat, i'd buy it cuz of the feel and all that.
#9
I think its a nostalgia thing for a number of people. And also that generally only the greatest guitars have been loved enough to be kept in good condition. Maybe theres some bias to it as well, but I see no reason for vintage to be better, paul reed smith said something similar, that guitars should be better now since we know more.

There are some ideas that the more a guitar is played that is generally sounds a bit nicer, maybe some sort of change in the wood but who knows, havent heard much about it thats concrete.
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#10
think of it this way.. tubes were old technology.. they were used in almost every electronic thing made including TV's and stuff.. they were used instead of resistors/transistors (i forget which one)

then resistors/transistors were invented and they were cheaper, didn't burn out, and lasted forever. so naturally things are made with them now

with guitar amplifiers, people WANT distortion.. i don't mean that like a distortion pedal, i mean that as not a perfectly replicated sound of their guitar's strings. This natural distortion is what gives amps character.

Tubes give a different and more desirable distortion compared to Solid state transistors/resistors. Solid state does something called "clipping" which sounds like a fart in my opinion. Tube clips are more pleasing.

so why do people like vintage gear? Because the old materials give their amp the character with natural distortion that is more favorable. New technology isn't always better
My Guitars:
Gibson Les Paul Studio
Epiphone AJ
Ibanez Strat Copy

Amps:
Orange Tiny Terror Head
Old beaten up Peavey cab
Marshall MG30DFX
#12
Quote by sashki
But it surely can't be EVERYBODY

Every guitar store I've been to recently stocks Metal-oriented guitars and vintage- or indie-oriented tube amps. And Line 6 Spiders.


A large portion of people that buy Gibson or Fender do it simply because of the history behind the brand, yet can't afford an actual 59 Les Paul, a 52 Telecaster, or 57 Stratocaster. Similarly, Fender, Vox, and Marshall amps are synonymous with those vintage sought after tones that a lot of people try to recreate. If that nostalgia can support the business, then those companies have no incentive to introduce anything new. Check out the advertisements for Fender amps and see who they list as users (SRV is almost always first). The Beatles even have a section developed to them on Vox's site.

There are some players that get vintage gear to sound modern. Johnny Greenwood's AC30 does not sound like 60s Brit rock, nor does Jeff Tweedy's JTM45 sound like Clapton.

Conversely, there are companies that cater to the modern crowd. Check out Ibanez, ESP, Diezel, ENGL, and companies of that nature. Those brands are constantly innovating and moving forward.

My point is that tone is not all vintage all the time.
#13
Because they invented this thing called "Digital Modelling", which sucks, so everyone went back to vintage

Plus if you stick a vintage tube amp on an AB switch with a modern valve amp, you'll hear why.
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#14
Also, older circuits tend to be much more simple. And simpler circuits are a hell of a lot easier to take care of and repair--not so much can go wrong and when it does it won't cost so much to fix. There's a very economic practical reason for vintage style gear.
#15
Vintage equipment is worth alot.

Ibanez S2170 Purple Chameleon finish
Vintage SG
Roland Microcube
Digitech overdrive
Digitech HEAVY METAL
Dunlop Crybaby
#16
vintage isn't always better.

the thing with vintage guitars is that they are very hit and miss depending on how well looked after they are or how well made they were in the first place. for example, some vintage stratocasters will be better than anything coming out of any fender factory these days, but some will be mediocre yet incredibly overpriced.
I like analogue Solid State amps that make no effort to be "tube-like", and I'm proud of it...

...A little too proud, to be honest.
#17
Quote by Fat-bastard0603
Because currently the guitar companies tend to use more cheap materials, lowering the quality. I think.


This is exactly why!

Most companies made these instruments/amps in USA back when rock music was real (80's). Then they get bigger and move their companies to china, Korea, japan..etc Then the quality goes down because not about making quality equipment anymore, but making money.

Alot of the used stuff out there is still better than the new stuff today. Look at Fender/Gibson and many others... their instruments are assembly line now.
#18
Quote by FightinIrishPJ
think of it this way.. tubes were old technology.. they were used in almost every electronic thing made including TV's and stuff.. they were used instead of resistors/transistors (i forget which one)

then resistors/transistors were invented and they were cheaper, didn't burn out, and lasted forever. so naturally things are made with them now

with guitar amplifiers, people WANT distortion.. i don't mean that like a distortion pedal, i mean that as not a perfectly replicated sound of their guitar's strings. This natural distortion is what gives amps character.

Tubes give a different and more desirable distortion compared to Solid state transistors/resistors. Solid state does something called "clipping" which sounds like a fart in my opinion. Tube clips are more pleasing.

so why do people like vintage gear? Because the old materials give their amp the character with natural distortion that is more favorable. New technology isn't always better


Then why are high-gain tube amps so expensive and hard to find?
#19
Quote by sashki
Then why are high-gain tube amps so expensive and hard to find?



They are certainly not hard to find. They are everywhere. They are expensive because they are desirable and usually hand made, like everything else.
#20
Essentially, solid state and modelling amps all attempt to recreate a sound that is the result of the physical properties of tube amps. It's a very hard thing to recreate and its easier to just use a tube amp to get the actual sound than to use newer technology to get an approximation of the sound.

It's like asking why people bother with drums when there are sequencers now. It's just not the same sound.
#21
Quote by _Kramer_
They are certainly not hard to find. They are everywhere. They are expensive because they are desirable and usually hand made, like everything else.

Only a small portion of high-gain amps are hand made... (compared to the amount of high gain amps out there)
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#22
Whenever I see this kind of debate, I formulate the following opinion:

"If we know more now, then we should be smarter and make smarter things than past generations, producing equal or higher effort for following generations to base their talents and virtues in. It seems the more we know though, the more we want to achieve great goals but by putting less effort while at it.

Companies cared for music back then, and they still do, but they're after money in an ambitious way rather just making a living while connecting with the customer. See Gibson's guitars and their quality, Past amps vs modern amps...hell even music, compare yesterday's writing skills (lyrics and instruments) and effort versus today's mainstream music.

The majority likes the mainstream(DUH lol, hence mainstream >_>, and I would too if they actually gave it some feeling and shape rather than just toss catchy lyrics over a song just to produce money or be famous, which seems to be the case of the majority of today's artists.

It seems the efficiency of songs went from the ability of making classics we can all relate to, to about current songs like the one about girls kissing girls and licking cherry lipstick (which some can relate to lol) vs for example, what Led Zeppelin used to write about in their songs. It's like if music(and it is) became a way for many to just create easy money with the only intention of being greedy. I would love to be famous, and make money for my family because it's a necessity in today's life to be able to maintain yourself on today's economy and many other stuff I don't have to mention but money WON'T be my number one reason for playing in a band. My love for music will.

I'm sure some of you will know how it feels to be on stage with many people watching you create music live to their ears. I just love that feel and I wouldn't ever get tired of having it, would you?"
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#23
Vintage isn't always better, but it's often very, very good.

Vintage guitars are usually desireable for a number of reasons. Firstly, they're often very resonant, due firstly to being built from good woods (which were more available then due to current cutting restrictions), secondly as they are usually finished in nitrocellulose, and finally because the body wood continues to dry out.

Pickups mellow over time, giving a warmer, richer tone. Vintage guitars do not sound the same now as they did when they were first made.

I don't find new finishes on necks to be very comfortable (I prefer nitrocellulose or oil finished necks). A well worn neck is generally smoother, and I actually like the look of a nicely worn in maple neck.

Downsides of vintage guitars, well seeing as I'm a Strat player at heart, the singlecoil hum can be dreadful. Watch one of Eric Johnson's instructional videos, stunning tone, but there is that constant, droning hum. Pickup output is usually very low, which can be a problem.

When it comes to amps, to be honest I really don't get it. I've played through some vintage plexis that were utterly stunning, others that weren't anything much to talk about. Same goes for AC30s, Fenders, etc. I prefer my Cornfords to any vintage amp I've played, and if I were looking for something that is vintage styled, well I'd take a Blankenship Variplex over a vintage plexi, a Cornell over a vintage Fender, etc.

Vintage effects, I don't really get it either except for fuzzes and tape delays. The chips (silicon or germanium) used in old fuzzes are almost impossible to find new, and are very inconsistent. You can get a vintage fuzz which is brilliant, or one which is mediocre. Tape delays sounds great, but aren't being made new (with the exception of a few boutique builders) mostly because magnetic tape isn't being produced to the same standard and quantities it used to be.
My name is Tom, feel free to use it.
#24
The entire premise is WRONG. Vintage isn't ALWAYS better. Not even mostly. Not
even close really.

It's just a mass mindset by enough repeaters. When you get old enough so that the
guitars you bought new are considered "vintage" by the next generation you'll see why
it's mostly marketing designed to pull your money out of the new market into the used
market -- the profit margin is HUGE.

Besides that, outside of Gibson & Fender, the vintage market is practically non-existent.
Going to any "Guitar Show" will show you that. One thing I can tell you is that in the
70's & 80's everyone was saying the new Fenders & Gibsons were crap compared to
"Vintage". LOL.
#25
Quote by sashki
I know it's a stupid question, but somehow I fail to see the answer.

Why does it seem that everyone leans towards vintage and vintage-style equipment?
Why do companies reissue 40 year old designs and market them as being better than their current line of products?
Why do people spend tons of money on old guitars, amps, pedals and even new-old-stock tubes?
What is so appealing about playing a guitar or amp that's older than your dad?

Music has moved forward since then. People want modern equipment with a contemporary sound. Sure, some of the old stuff sounds great, but if you play modern music, why do you want something that sounds vintage?

Please don't say anything like "o bcuz bak then teh amp manufactururz were teh dedic8ted to gettin teh gud tonez". That's not true. They built amps to earn money, just like they do now.

So, why is "vintage" such a good thing?



Vintage is a good thing because:
1. No one makes them anymore, it makes you unique to have one.
2. The build quality on most guitars from the 50s-90s was superb. It's gone down recently for most companys.
3. Their tone often can't be reproduced.
Quote by satchgear
I tried it out in store.

Great neck, nice n light, good tuning stability. Overall a good guitar. I didn't but it cause I generally only buy guitars over a grand now.
#26
Quote by RR787
Whenever I see this kind of debate, I formulate the following opinion:

"If we know more now, then we should be smarter and make smarter things than past generations, producing equal or higher effort for following generations to base their talents and virtues in. It seems the more we know though, the more we want to achieve great goals but by putting less effort while at it.

Companies cared for music back then, and they still do, but they're after money in an ambitious way rather just making a living while connecting with the customer. See Gibson's guitars and their quality, Past amps vs modern amps...hell even music, compare yesterday's writing skills (lyrics and instruments) and effort versus today's mainstream music.

The majority likes the mainstream(DUH lol, hence mainstream >_>, and I would too if they actually gave it some feeling and shape rather than just toss catchy lyrics over a song just to produce money or be famous, which seems to be the case of the majority of today's artists.

It seems the efficiency of songs went from the ability of making classics we can all relate to, to about current songs like the one about girls kissing girls and licking cherry lipstick (which some can relate to lol) vs for example, what Led Zeppelin used to write about in their songs. It's like if music(and it is) became a way for many to just create easy money with the only intention of being greedy. I would love to be famous, and make money for my family because it's a necessity in today's life to be able to maintain yourself on today's economy and many other stuff I don't have to mention but money WON'T be my number one reason for playing in a band. My love for music will.

I'm sure some of you will know how it feels to be on stage with many people watching you create music live to their ears. I just love that feel and I wouldn't ever get tired of having it, would you?"

Who are you to decide what people's motives for making music are? I bet there were just as many people in it for the money/fame in the '70s as there are now. And Gibson's quality was questioned in the '70s and '80s too. It's not like they just started putting profit over quality recently.

Besides, I doubt many people play musi just for money. That's stupid. Being a musician isn't a good way to make money. If they wanted to make money they would be an accountant or something. People play music because it's what they want to do. And some people's music happens to be commercially successful. Nickelback sucks, but they would probably still be playing their crappy music even if they didn't make any money for it.
#27
You failed to see the first sentence didn't you? OPINION

Who are you to question my opinion?

There were many back then, true but where did I state they weren't? You're formulating all these stuff about my opinion based on what you think. Fine I respect what you do think, though I don't care about it but I respect it. What I meant is how this seems like we're going from bad to worse every generation. Still an opinion! Your part about Gibson: saying what I already said: Gibson and their quality which was pretty much about right, and it started to go downhill. I didn't say it started on 2001. Many use it to make easy money? True, a musicians, as those that play instruments and songs may not make much but ever seen rappers? 4 Lambos, 3 Ferraris, 2 Houses? Going back to what I stated in my opinion about people using music to make money. Anything else you want to discuss about my opinion?

No? kthxbai.
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Last edited by RR787 at Dec 20, 2008,
#28
because older music was music and not power chords

/thread
Gear:
Epiphone Les Paul Standard
Blackstar HT-5 Head
Homemade 1x12 from a combo cab with an Eminence PJ
Quote by ikey_
perhaps i have a superb epiphone. the japanese man must have gotten laid and won the lottery right before he made my guitar. whatever.
#29
Quote by sashki

Music has moved forward since then. People want modern equipment with a contemporary sound. Sure, some of the old stuff sounds great, but if you play modern music, why do you want something that sounds vintage?


The electric guitar became one of the most popular instruments ever with "vintage" bands, not with bands from the 21st century. Old bands like the Yardbirds, Cream, Led Z., AC/DC, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy etc. define what we know as the electric rock n' roll guitar today, that's why people want that vintage sound.
#30
Quote by Blompcube
vintage isn't always better.

the thing with vintage guitars is that they are very hit and miss depending on how well looked after they are or how well made they were in the first place. for example, some vintage stratocasters will be better than anything coming out of any fender factory these days, but some will be mediocre yet incredibly overpriced.

+1. Up until about the 80s, when everyone went to CNC machines, guitars were inconsistent, though some companies like Fender and Gibson built their rep on being more consistent than others, having better features, or a better price. Vintage now is more for cool factor. I think the biggest draw though are the pickups in a vintage guitar, as they are simply not made that way anymore, similar to speakers. A recreation is just that.
#31
With some things it's the fact it's discontinued. For example, once I get a job, if I ever see an SG Junior I intend to grab it as soon as I can, since I love the look and tone of them and they were discontinued in the 1960's.

With others it's the quality of stuff. Take a 1958 Les Paul, take it apart, and, if the rest of the forum hasn't brutally murdered you for taking apart a 1958 Les Paul, you'll find everything is hand-wired and hand-made with the precise care only a human hand can give. Take a modern Standard and do the same, and you'll see that not only is a lot of the raw components are made in China and just assembled in the US, but much of it is machine-done, and, as machine's don't notice a lot of things and just machine-cut-machine-cut-machine-cut all-day, there are plenty that are awful. There are some that kick vintage ass, but many just don't compare.

Plus prices aren't always that inflated though; a local shop has a 73' ES-335 for $2,700, only about $1,000 more than a standard, and at that point, really it doesn't seem like a lot of cash to add in IMO.

There's also some brands like PRS that are immune to the second one IMO; all their non-SE guitars are fully-handmade instead of machine-made even partially if I'm correct, though as a brand that just entered the $1,000-$2000 market this year, you pay for that hand-madedness(yes, I misspelled that purposely), though PRS are some of if not the best in the business IMO, so you get what you pay for there.

So yeah, it's not always better, vintage just has a higher hit rate than new does for hit-miss on quality.

Also, what CJRocker said.
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#32
I don't understand why malmsteen uses ugly stratocasters from the 70's
#33
Quote by loginer
I don't understand why malmsteen uses ugly stratocasters from the 70's


How are they ugly? Sure they were worse since they were CBS-era, but the big headstock is sexy. =3
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#34
Well back in the day companies had to make high qualitly pieces of equipment to get people to buy thier stuff. Now its only a handful of comapines who rely on their reputation allow.

1) Lower quality
2) Raise prices
3) ???
4) Profit

Pretty much...
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#35
Quote by RR787
Whenever I see this kind of debate, I formulate the following opinion:

"If we know more now, then we should be smarter and make smarter things than past generations, producing equal or higher effort for following generations to base their talents and virtues in. It seems the more we know though, the more we want to achieve great goals but by putting less effort while at it.

Companies cared for music back then, and they still do, but they're after money in an ambitious way rather just making a living while connecting with the customer. See Gibson's guitars and their quality, Past amps vs modern amps...hell even music, compare yesterday's writing skills (lyrics and instruments) and effort versus today's mainstream music.

The majority likes the mainstream(DUH lol, hence mainstream >_>, and I would too if they actually gave it some feeling and shape rather than just toss catchy lyrics over a song just to produce money or be famous, which seems to be the case of the majority of today's artists.

It seems the efficiency of songs went from the ability of making classics we can all relate to, to about current songs like the one about girls kissing girls and licking cherry lipstick (which some can relate to lol) vs for example, what Led Zeppelin used to write about in their songs. It's like if music(and it is) became a way for many to just create easy money with the only intention of being greedy. I would love to be famous, and make money for my family because it's a necessity in today's life to be able to maintain yourself on today's economy and many other stuff I don't have to mention but money WON'T be my number one reason for playing in a band. My love for music will.

I'm sure some of you will know how it feels to be on stage with many people watching you create music live to their ears. I just love that feel and I wouldn't ever get tired of having it, would you?"


Your right, those kids should get off your lawn.
#36
its just to make it more expensive haha. and it has a different sound, so mostly the people that seek them are jazz and blues players, and collectionists.
#37
Quote by aznrockerdude
Only a small portion of high-gain amps are hand made... (compared to the amount of high gain amps out there)


Also for the fact that they require more parts...

For an example vintage amps are much easier to build. Why is that? Because they often use fairly simple designs. Things like high gain distortion (requiring more tubes and a much larger preamp), multiple channels and effects loops aren't needed. Why are close to all kit amps vintage amp designs? Because they are easy to build. Which means that the amp designers can make better amps for a lower price in a sense. And also the fact that vintage does sell. The majority of players today either seek a high gain amp if you play hard rock or metal. If you however play blues, classic rock or say indie you often want a vintage amp. Why? Because the's what the artists uses. Plus a lot of modern amps try to capture a vintage tone (Orange for an example are very classic sounding while being modern in design). It's about finding the right demographic. A high gain amp will always sell with metalheads and they want a modern design and modern tone, but classic rockers like me wants a vintage tone and then prefers them to be more vintage styled.
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#38
Quote by necrosis1193

There's also some brands like PRS that are immune to the second one IMO; all their non-SE guitars are fully-handmade instead of machine-made even partially if I'm correct, though as a brand that just entered the $1,000-$2000 market this year, you pay for that hand-madedness(yes, I misspelled that purposely), though PRS are some of if not the best in the business IMO, so you get what you pay for there.



PRS guitars aren't handmade. They are cut on a CNC machine just like everything else. I've been to the factory.
#39
I don't think that tube amps are all vintage. No way. The technology of tubes is old, but a hell of a lot of valve amps are high gain and very modern, just like ENGL products. While I love the idea of having the most up to date and modern guitar gear, generally there are more problems with new products.

The reason I believe this is because old amplifier and guitar manufacturers were just aiming to get something that WORKED and could get them some money. Fender Esquires and Marshall JMPs are pretty damn simple, very few controls each and almost no special features. While this limits what you can do with the equipment, the gear is designed to do one thing, and it does it very well as it has nothing else to worry about. There is no effects loop in old Marshalls to cause problems, no reverb or anything like that, they can just do their job of amplifying the signal with basic eq with only simple things to go wrong.