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#1
I've been shopping around in the endless world of Strats and Strat copies, but I'd like to hear some input from the fine men and women of UG. I'm looking for a mid to high quality Strat. My initial budget is around 500 but I'm willing to save up more money if I find one I really like. I'd prefer something with a lighter body (alder, maybe?) due to my back problems and more of a bright tone to pair with my Bogner Alchemist head. I have a Sterling by Music Man JP50 and I LOVE the floating bridge without the locking nut, but I haven't heard of anybody who makes a Strat like that. I'm willing to upgrade parts or whatever, but I'd love to hear your suggestions!
#2
alder can be light or heavy, it depends on the guitar.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#3
Tom Anderson.
No, Suhr.
No, Fender itself.

Oh wait.
You want cheap.

Flip a coin.
#4
Best Mid-to-high quality? That's all relative, but probably Fender or Schecter.

For the price you list,if you like modern Strats, then I'd say Blacktop Strat or Modern Player if $500 is your target.

When I'm thinking mid-quality, I'm thinking American Special, which isn't much better than a Blacktop. All these are compromise guitars because while they have 22 fret necks, the tuners suck and they have 6-point vintage style bridges.

But the range of mid-quality also includes American Standard and American Deluxe. So that goes from $900 - $1,700.

Medium High quality would be Fender Custom Shop team built and high quality would be a master-built, but now you're talking a lot more.

Most Strats have floating non-locking bridges like the JP50. Spring tension (claw tightness/# of springs) can either let the bridge float (2 directions of travel) or "deck it" (1 direction, i.e., dive-only).

The 2-point bridges found on Am Std/Deluxe and modern-oriented Custom Shop guitars are preferred for functionality (actually use the bar without it going out of tune), but some people prefer the 6-point vintage style because they think there's better vibration transfer--though the slop in the pickup mounting probably negates that.

If you're not a "traditionalist", the Am Deluxes have numerous features that make them the best value: Compound neck radius. Roller nut (for humbucker models). Locking tuners. Contour heel. Pop-in trem arm, with Fender's highest performing bridge (polished block steel saddles & densest trem block). S-1 electronics.

If you don't like the abalone dots or the limited colors, you can either go to the factory have them build you what you want to your specs thru the American Design Experience program, or you can pay 3-4 times as much ordering thru the Custom Shop at a dealer. The main differences are premium woods, at some levels you can choose the exact weight, and you can get to interact with famous builders. American Design Experience in person is a great deal if you're near Corona CA, as costs are near what a similar guitar would be retail but you get exactly what you want. They'll do ash or alder, but not match a specific weight. There's American Design Experience online, too, but that costs more and options are still extremely limited.

You may also want to consider a used Fender Made in Japan Strat.

If you prefer vintage style Strats, IMHO you might as well just get a Squier Affinity and spring for a good setup, upgrade the pickups and hardware. Some people pay thousands to get the same design limitations from a vintage-style Custom Shop guitar.

IMHO, with the number of guitars you have/already had, it would be worth saving up for an American Deluxe or even a used American Deluxe--if you appreciate the modern features. If not and you don't mind modding, then a Squier can be the way to go. Or , if you don't want to mess with it much out of the box, then you can get a Mex Standard or Deluxe for your price range, but it won't be as good as a modded Squier.

If weight is a major factor, Sweetwater's guitar gallery lists the weight. They had a 7lb 13 oz Mahogany Deluxe "10 for 15" limited edition but it already sold. Many of their alders and ashes weigh over 8 pounds. Also Sweetwater does a 55 point setup and includes a free 2 year warranty.
#5
Quote by Dave_Mc
alder can be light or heavy, it depends on the guitar.


+1

My dad owns an Alder bodied Fender MiM Standard Strat from 2001 and it's a brick compared to the newer lighter models. (I played several recently thinking about buying one for a project. Sadly they all felt too light for me because I based my plans on my dad's.) And my Jackson RRMG is no slouch either with it's alder body. So if you could get a newer MiM Standard Fender you may love it, due to the lighter body. I'd also consider things made out of nicer basswoods, such as the midrange Ibanez RG models depending on the style you play, or even possibly a Squier Vintage Vibe 60's reissue. I played one recently and I enjoyed several things about it, especially at it's price point.
Quote by Roc8995
Yes, and people still got polio and you had to crank your car up by hand and put whale oil in the lamps every night.

Things are better now.


Quote by dannyalcatraz
Style is in the hands. Taste is in the hands. But tone? Tone is in the gear.
#6
Oh yeah, you might want to check out G&L (if you can find a store with a wide selection, not just the cheapest ones), but their better guitars are going to be more expensive.
#8
Godin, Fret-King, Carvin, Fernandes, G&L...lots of options out there.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#9
There's a MIJ Squier with the 3-bolt SQ serial in my area for 385...I've been debating about it but I feel like I need more info about it. It's got single coils (which is what I'm looking for) but I can't figure out if it's got the American pickups or Japanese pickups in it. I've been looking at a USA G&L for about 675. I played an HSS American Special yesterday but I honestly wasn't that impressed because it sounded really muddy. I've owned several Ibanez RGs but I've been obsessed with David Gilmour and Eric Johnson lately so that's why I'm looking for a quality Strat. Thanks for the responses so far! You guys are great.
#10
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Sep 6, 2015,
#11
Double post
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#13
Quote by SpeedSterHR

But the range of mid-quality also includes American Standard and American Deluxe. So that goes from $900 - $1,700.

Medium High quality would be Fender Custom Shop team built and high quality would be a master-built, but now you're talking a lot more.


Are you from TGP?

Quote by SpeedSterHR

If you don't like the abalone dots


I don't think the Am deluxes have abalone dots any more, they're pearloid or something like that.

Quote by GraceByDeath
+1

My dad owns an Alder bodied Fender MiM Standard Strat from 2001 and it's a brick compared to the newer lighter models.


Yeah I have a few alder guitars and the weights are all over the place. They vary from basically my lightest guitars (near enough) to my heaviest (again, near enough). Granted, I guess the maple in the necks could vary too in weight, it might not be solely the alder. But certainly most people talking about alder guitars mean just the body (and it's normally paired with a maple neck), so if they can vary that much, regardless of why, it's worth bearing in mind if you have the preconception that alder-bodied guitars are light- they can be, but not always.
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
Last edited by Dave_Mc at Sep 6, 2015,
#14
Sounds like you could use a basswood guitar. I'd go with a Jackson Soloist SLX.
#15
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#16
Quote by Dave_Mc
Are you from TGP?


I think "Ultimate Guitar" should change its name to Budget Guitar. Dot Com.

Gibson, Fender, PRS, Taylor, etc., have High, Low and Middle price ranges.
Most of the folks in Ultimate Guitar seem to want to live in a low/medium/high price range world within the Low price range of the major builders. How Ultimate is THAT?
#17
Well, we don't get many "which guitar should I buy, my budget is $5000+" questions. What are we supposed to recommend guys with $500 budget?

Alternatively, feel free to tell folks in your circle to come and post here. Would love to read more Lamborghini vs. BMW i8 stories.
#18
Quote by dspellman
I think "Ultimate Guitar" should change its name to Budget Guitar. Dot Com.

Gibson, Fender, PRS, Taylor, etc., have High, Low and Middle price ranges.
Most of the folks in Ultimate Guitar seem to want to live in a low/medium/high price range world within the Low price range of the major builders. How Ultimate is THAT?


Generally the people spending thousands won't ask the question though. They know what they want and have usually been playing and buying long enough to know what to look for to get what they want. I'd wager there are more 'true high end' guitar and bass owners here than you think.
#19
Which reminds me...is Stealthtastic still around?
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#20
I've got major back problems and my #1 guitar is my Ibanez S570DXQM.
Its a Strat type guitar and is very light.
They cost around $700US - $800US new.

I changed the stock pickups to Dimarzio Evolution's.
While the stock pickups were alright, they were less than stellar IMO.
I think I paid about $150 for the full set.
#21
Quote by dspellman
I think "Ultimate Guitar" should change its name to Budget Guitar. Dot Com.

Gibson, Fender, PRS, Taylor, etc., have High, Low and Middle price ranges.
Most of the folks in Ultimate Guitar seem to want to live in a low/medium/high price range world within the Low price range of the major builders. How Ultimate is THAT?


while i don't disagree as others have mentioned guys that want true high end guitars either A- know what they want and don't ask or B- don't post it here and go to the gear page which is the only board i've been on where that kind of ? gets asked seriously.

we've already discussed teh low/med/high thing and it's all relative to how much money you have. i mean paul allen spent $1,000,000 on jimi's woodstock strat and to him that's a drop in the bucket.

OP if you want a quality light weight strat then look at Japanese Fenders. they often used high quality basswood which is light.
#22
A Dean Zelinsky stratocaster with Z-Glide neck is on my Christmas list for a while now.
Quote by slapsymcdougal
You can tell if it's eager, because you put your hand down her pants and it feels like a horse eating oats.

Nicest compliment on my looks:
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Putting the 'sex' in 'convicted sex offender'.
#23
Quote by dannyalcatraz
Which reminds me...is Stealthtastic still around?


He's on TGP
#24
Quote by dthmtl3
Well, we don't get many "which guitar should I buy, my budget is $5000+" questions. What are we supposed to recommend guys with $500 budget?

Alternatively, feel free to tell folks in your circle to come and post here. Would love to read more Lamborghini vs. BMW i8 stories.


We DO get folks who start a thread "Who builds the best quality Strat-type?"
Like this one.

It's not until later, usually, that we find out what the budget is, and at that point the choice is usually either, "haunt the used sources" or" try a bunch of Asian guitars." Worse, the question really makes little sense when you consider how many neck shapes, radii, fretboard materials, etc. there are just on the necks alone.

BTW, the BMW i8 (got to drive one about three weeks ago) is pretty amazing. It'll get up to 60 faster than an M3, but will do nearly 30 mpg. My Lamborghini will do about 16 mpg on a good day (mine's very old). There's a fellow named Gidi (and yes, there are t-shirts that say Team Gidi-Up!) who has a white lambo with a UR (Underground Racing) package putting out around 2000 bhp. It's "street legal". *snort* He does the half mile with a top speed of 235 mph. Compared to the i8 (about 360 bhp, all three engines considered), it's pretty fast. But I think the fuel consumption is in gallons per mile.
#25
Quote by icanhasgodmode
A Dean Zelinsky stratocaster with Z-Glide neck is on my Christmas list for a while now.


Have you actually tried one?
Any thoughts about how you're going to get sweat, grime and DNA out of the pattern on the neck?
#26
Quote by dspellman
I think "Ultimate Guitar" should change its name to Budget Guitar. Dot Com.

Gibson, Fender, PRS, Taylor, etc., have High, Low and Middle price ranges.
Most of the folks in Ultimate Guitar seem to want to live in a low/medium/high price range world within the Low price range of the major builders. How Ultimate is THAT?


Because the low end is where the bargains are. The rule of diminishing returns comes into play.

It's like computers. You can easily blow several grand on a top of the line gaming PC, but if you get the 2nd best of everything...you'll end up with a PC about 99% as good for 50% the price. Same principle.
Last edited by TobusRex at Sep 7, 2015,
#27
Quote by dspellman
We DO get folks who start a thread "Who builds the best quality Strat-type?"
Like this one.

It's not until later, usually, that we find out what the budget is, and at that point the choice is usually either, "haunt the used sources" or" try a bunch of Asian guitars." Worse, the question really makes little sense when you consider how many neck shapes, radii, fretboard materials, etc. there are just on the necks alone.

BTW, the BMW i8 (got to drive one about three weeks ago) is pretty amazing. It'll get up to 60 faster than an M3, but will do nearly 30 mpg. My Lamborghini will do about 16 mpg on a good day (mine's very old). There's a fellow named Gidi (and yes, there are t-shirts that say Team Gidi-Up!) who has a white lambo with a UR (Underground Racing) package putting out around 2000 bhp. It's "street legal". *snort* He does the half mile with a top speed of 235 mph. Compared to the i8 (about 360 bhp, all three engines considered), it's pretty fast. But I think the fuel consumption is in gallons per mile.


that's a valid point. asking what the "best" of anything is and then saying you can only afford "ok" is a bit of a waste. of course i think that many here don't realize that there are dozens of strat style makers on the higher end (like Ron Kirn for instance). of course there is the Fender custon shop as well who makes strats that can go for well over $5000.

as for the car thing you lucky bastard.
#28
Quote by icanhasgodmode
A Dean Zelinsky stratocaster with Z-Glide neck is on my Christmas list for a while now.

Ditto.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#29
Quote by dspellman
Have you actually tried one?
Any thoughts about how you're going to get sweat, grime and DNA out of the pattern on the neck?

I bought a used guitar with some nappy dings in the neck. It was originally over $3500, and the dings dropped the price to under $500. When you grab it, you notice the dings, but when you play it, you don't.

So personally, if/when I get a Tagliare, I'm not going to bother with much more than a quick wipe with a cloth.

If it starts to stink, I'll just use it for funk.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#30
+1 on the carvin. That aside. I would vo with the prs se custom. Coil taps and a quite comfortable giotar. I am a metal head but can get some nice strat tones ou of it. If you want a specificly strat type(3 singles) I liked my dean or MIM strat better than any american ive played.
96 MIJ Jackson
Charvel DC 1 FR
PRS SE Custom 24
Yamaha FG730S
DIY acoustic
DIY mockingbird
Peavey classic 50 2x12
#31
+1 on the carvin. That aside. I would vo with the prs se custom. Coil taps and a quite comfortable giotar. I am a metal head but can get some nice strat tones ou of it. If you want a specificly strat type(3 singles) I liked my dean or MIM strat better than any american ive played.
96 MIJ Jackson
Charvel DC 1 FR
PRS SE Custom 24
Yamaha FG730S
DIY acoustic
DIY mockingbird
Peavey classic 50 2x12
#32
If I were going for a SSS Guitar, I'd probably buy a Reverend Six-Gun.

http://www.reverendguitars.com/instrument/six-gun-iii/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rAQ0w4z3C8c&sns=em

They also made a limited edition version with a Tele-style bridge pickup, but that configuration got made into the Pete Anderson Eastsider S- a Teleclone.

http://www.diffusion-audio.com/xcart/Reverend-Pete-Anderson-Eastsider-S.html
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Sep 7, 2015,
#33
Quote by Dave_Mc
Are you from TGP?


No. Are you talking about The Gear Page (just Googled it). Should I check it out? I haven't outgrown UG, have I?

Quote by Dave_Mc
I don't think the Am deluxes have abalone dots any more, they're pearloid or something like that.


Booyah! You're right, just like the Am Standards! About frick'en time they fixed that. I noticed that on the 10 for 15 Mahogany Deluxe, but thought that was just a special feature for the limited edition. It's still an option at the Custom Shop, though, for those that like it. Thanks!!!
#34
Quote by dspellman
I think "Ultimate Guitar" should change its name to Budget Guitar. Dot Com.

Gibson, Fender, PRS, Taylor, etc., have High, Low and Middle price ranges.
Most of the folks in Ultimate Guitar seem to want to live in a low/medium/high price range world within the Low price range of the major builders. How Ultimate is THAT?



I just laughed and laughed when I read this but it does seem to ring true way more times than not ....... I have more money in guitar cable than a lot on here are wanting to pay for a amp , and then expect it to sound just like Eddie VanHalen's amp
#35
Quote by GraceByDeath
My dad owns an Alder bodied Fender MiM Standard Strat from 2001 and it's a brick compared to the newer lighter models. (I played several recently thinking about buying one for a project. Sadly they all felt too light for me because I based my plans on my dad's.) And my Jackson RRMG is no slouch either with it's alder body. So if you could get a newer MiM Standard Fender you may love it, due to the lighter body. I'd also consider things made out of nicer basswoods, such as the midrange Ibanez RG models depending on the style you play, or even possibly a Squier Vintage Vibe 60's reissue. I played one recently and I enjoyed several things about it, especially at it's price point.


I don't think there's anything that suggests bodies are getting heavier or lighter in general, I assume it's just by chance that your father's 2001 MIM happens to be heavy and the more recent ones you've tried happens to be lighter.

My 2014 MIM Standard is definitely not one of the lighter ones I've laid my hands on. Would have liked a lighter one, but it's not a dealbreaker. In the end, you can never be sure what you'll get unless you try the guitar in person before buying.
"Your signature can not be longer than 250 characters."

How you know you have too many guitars...

Apparently once also known as PonyFan #834553.
#36
Quote by TobusRex
Because the low end is where the bargains are.


That doesn't necessarily follow. In terms of the total amount of money saved compared to retail, it's usually obvious that number is at the high end. Same thing happens when you consider the *percentage* of money saved. In particular, custom and semi-custom guitars depreciate the quickest (and the most) because it's often difficult to find someone with exactly the same tastes as you had when you spec'd out the guitar. Hence, a used custom-built guitar is often a major bargain.

It can be difficult to find a true bargain on a cheap....er...inexpensive guitar because 1. It's already inexpensive and 2. You're not going to save a lot of money compared to a new price no matter HOW much of a discount you get.

Quote by TobusRex
The rule of diminishing returns comes into play.


I understand what you're saying. Why buy a Ferrari when a Chevy Volt can get you across town in traffic, too? If you can buy a whole, working guitar for $109 that plays and sounds pretty much like what it's supposed to, why then do we even *have* Suhrs and Andersons and Masterbilt Fenders and such?

And then question becomes, "Why do we not ALL buy mediocre things?"

The truth of it is, most of us do. We eat McD's. We buy Ikea. And we justify everything as "the rule of diminishing returns comes into play."

Ever hear the song "Little Boxes" by Malvina Reynolds?
#37
Mine are full of ticky-tack.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#38
Quote by dspellman
I think "Ultimate Guitar" should change its name to Budget Guitar. Dot Com.

Gibson, Fender, PRS, Taylor, etc., have High, Low and Middle price ranges.
Most of the folks in Ultimate Guitar seem to want to live in a low/medium/high price range world within the Low price range of the major builders. How Ultimate is THAT?


well that's a bit of a straw man, I mean I'm not saying everyone should use a beginner guitar, but if you're saying the custom shop isn't high-end I think you're getting awfully close to TGP syndrome.

Quote by dspellman
We DO get folks who start a thread "Who builds the best quality Strat-type?"
Like this one.

It's not until later, usually, that we find out what the budget is


yeah that's a fair point. that can get annoying. if they even say, "what's the best strat I can get for $X?", that's fair enough.

Quote by SpeedSterHR
No. Are you talking about The Gear Page (just Googled it). Should I check it out? I haven't outgrown UG, have I?


Booyah! You're right, just like the Am Standards! About frick'en time they fixed that. I noticed that on the 10 for 15 Mahogany Deluxe, but thought that was just a special feature for the limited edition. It's still an option at the Custom Shop, though, for those that like it. Thanks!!!


yeah the gear page. it has a bit of a rep for having more money than sense.

I actually liked the abalone.

Quote by dspellman

I understand what you're saying. Why buy a Ferrari when a Chevy Volt can get you across town in traffic, too? If you can buy a whole, working guitar for $109 that plays and sounds pretty much like what it's supposed to, why then do we even *have* Suhrs and Andersons and Masterbilt Fenders and such?

And then question becomes, "Why do we not ALL buy mediocre things?"

The truth of it is, most of us do. We eat McD's. We buy Ikea. And we justify everything as "the rule of diminishing returns comes into play."

Ever hear the song "Little Boxes" by Malvina Reynolds?


Well, sure. Some cheaper stuff just isn't as good, and it's people doing post-purchase (or pre-purchase, I guess) rationalisation, telling themselves it's just as good. But that cognitive bias can also apply to more expensive stuff- not everything expensive is better, and some people are chancers who will sell you crap for more money.

Quote by Fumble fingers
I just laughed and laughed when I read this but it does seem to ring true way more times than not ....... I have more money in guitar cable than a lot on here are wanting to pay for a amp , and then expect it to sound just like Eddie VanHalen's amp


i hope you have a lot of cables because cables are often one of the things suggested as having a lot of snake oil in them
I'm an idiot and I accidentally clicked the "Remove all subscriptions" button. If it seems like I'm ignoring you, I'm not, I'm just no longer subscribed to the thread. If you quote me or do the @user thing at me, hopefully it'll notify me through my notifications and I'll get back to you.
Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Et tu, br00tz?
#39
I have 3 , 25 ft guitar cables in my Gig bag along with 2 4ft cab to speaker cable , then two 25 ft cables from pedal board to FX loop and back ,

for home ... then I have two 25ft cab to speaker cables at home along with 4 15ft guitar cables then 4 25ft guitar cable , maybe 6 broken guitar cables , plus all the little cables between my pedals

as you can see , it adds up even buying the cheaper cables ... it makes asking about a 150.00 amp seem silly
Last edited by Fumble fingers at Sep 8, 2015,
#40
Quote by dspellman
That doesn't necessarily follow.


Haha, yeah. But still you can make broad comparisons anyway, no matter how cheap the guitar is (and that is the beauty of it).


Quote by dspellman

I understand what you're saying. Why buy a Ferrari when a Chevy Volt can get you across town in traffic, too? If you can buy a whole, working guitar for $109 that plays and sounds pretty much like what it's supposed to, why then do we even *have* Suhrs and Andersons and Masterbilt Fenders and such?

And then question becomes, "Why do we not ALL buy mediocre things?"

The truth of it is, most of us do. We eat McD's. We buy Ikea. And we justify everything as "the rule of diminishing returns comes into play."

Ever hear the song "Little Boxes" by Malvina Reynolds?


Well.....maybe not all of us deserve the very best I certainly don't, but I'm a cheap bastard by nature anyway

I think the more interesting question is this....at what point do we "shift" the standard for quality? Consider that probably the best made guitar in the world 400 years ago is an abject piece of shit compared to a Stagg dreadnaught today. The quality of produced goods typically improves over time as machine processes are mastered/improved. Eventually the entire industry standard has to go higher because everything is better made than before. Consider also that scientific advances come along and can change the whole ballgame in the wink of an eye. Some university out there may be designing some type of material that could sonically kick the dogshit out of natural perfect wood. What happens if that product is dirty cheap to produce, possibly even a by product of a massively used industry. A company with excellent tools and raw materials could craft a fantastic plastic guitar for $50 and make a nice profit anyway. Can you image that? Objectively the quality of that $50 could surpass something that you get off Ebay for $20,000. It's happened before (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quartz_crisis).
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