Page 1 of 2
#1
When it comes to musical instruments would you say "you get what you pay for," or have you ever owned a piece of equipment, modded or stock, that you thought you got more than what you paid for it? What about a guitar you paid for and thought "this isn't worth what I paid for it." For example, I've noticed some guys say Epiphone or PRS SE guitars are similar or better than Gibson guitars, and other similar comments.
#2
The dozens of guitars I've bought over the years have all been what I paid for.

As far as lower priced guitars like the Epiphone and SE you mention, they tend to use cheaper parts and have poorer quality control, but sometimes you'll find one that plays or sounds as good as the higher price counterparts.
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#3
Jackson MIJ Pro Series guitars are worth way more than what they sell for used.

Pretty much anything from Rondomusic is way cheaper than the equivalent from other brands.

Many of the high quality MIJ Les Paul/Strat etc. copies.

You do get what you pay for with cheaper (<$500) guitars and when you're really scraping the bottom of the barrel in terms of price, even only small differences in price get you a significant jump in quality.
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#4
Id say you get what you pay for most of the time. There is a few exceptions. My PRS SE is a awesome guitar and I'd say it could rival most guitars in the $800 dollar range.
#5
ONLY going by actual retail price, not steals I've gotten on used guitars.

Any of the old 80's USA Peavey's I've owned were worth more than their price, especially the Destiny's and Vandenberg's.

The Charvel Desolation line were much nicer than their original price tag. I was always very impressed with them for being made in China.

The Peavey V-Type's were worth less than their price tags IMHO.

The 90's Jackson Professional line, particularly the PRO models, if comparing relative to their USA counterparts quality and price tag, were worth more than the cost.

Most everything else I've owned was about on par with the price.
#6
Quote by stevenjmal
When it comes to musical instruments would you say "you get what you pay for," or have you ever owned a piece of equipment, modded or stock, that you thought you got more than what you paid for it? What about a guitar you paid for and thought "this isn't worth what I paid for it." For example, I've noticed some guys say Epiphone or PRS SE guitars are similar or better than Gibson guitars, and other similar comments.


Generally speaking, I hunt bargains (new OR used). All of the new and used Agiles (Rondo Music) I have are worth significantly more than I paid, both in comparison to their new prices and to other guitars with the same capabilities. Same goes for the Carvins and Moonstones. I probably overpaid for the Taylor 814ce and the Gibson Axcess Custom, but definitely underpaid for the other Gibsons.
#7
I only have three guitars out of the 20 some I own that are worth more than their original purchase price. That would be 1956 Gibson ES225, an Ibanez 1976 LP copy and an Ibanez 1982 AM50 (my all time favorite guitar). The other guitars I own are most likely worth more or less what I paid for them because they are either well used (tools of the trade) or were not that special to begin with and there is little to no market to sell or trade them. I don't collect or put away any guitars to see if they will increase in value and I have never bought a guitar based on how much I think it might be worth down the road.

As for the Epiphone comment I have to disagree. In some cases (not all) Epiphone makes some quality guitars on their upper end. My two 1960 LP Tributes and a 1998 Korean LP Custom are really nice, great sounding guitars. Are they better than a $3000 Gibson LP Standard? Maybe not 100% but they come close enough for me (until recently I owned a 1973 Gibson LP Standard that I played for more than 38 years). At my age I have gotten over headstock envy.

Nice thread.
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#8
It really depends, unfortunately. Most of the time you get (more or less) what you pay for. Sometimes you get less. Sometimes you get more.
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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.

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#9
8Len8

Yeah, I've always wanted to find an Epiphone, Squier, or otherwise cheaper that could compare to something more expensive. I don't get to try out many guitars very often and my ear isn't very good so I like to ask what other people think.
#10
well I try to avoid buying guitars and gear that isn't worth what I paid. experience has taught me many lessons over the years so at this point I'm pretty good at sniffing out great deals (or at least I'd like to think so). I try to avoid the whole my (fill in less expensive brand here) is just as good or better than (fill in big $ brand here) thing as more often than not that is wishful thinking. what can be said is this particular item works very well for me so I don't feel the need to get something more expensive. i'll happily put my main strat up against any others and not feel like I'm on the losing end of things. this doesn't make all MIMs as good as a custom shop version at all though. all it means is that I got lucky and found a guitar that works well for me (someone else may think it's a piece of junk) in the long run that's what it's all about is finding gear that works for you and hopefully getting a good deal on it.
#11
T00DEEPBLUE

I agree with you. I had a $200 nylon string guitar for classical guitar lessons and it lasted for six months. I replaced it with an Alhambra 7P, because the $200 instrument wouldn't hold a tune. I don't think I would spend money on a guitar less than $600-700, definitely not less than $500.
#13
Xander_X

I've wanted a Jackson RR1 for years. I hear the USA Jackson necks are unrivaled. Good to hear some of the cheaper models are quality instruments too.
#14
dspellman

Taylor guitars, along with Martin, are supposed to be some of the best acoustic guitars around. The only acoustic guitars I've ever had was my dad's old Yamaha FG-340, which sounded fantastic, and my Alhambra 7P. I have a Gibson Dethklok Explorer and I love it.
#15
Rickholly74

That's what I was hoping to hear. In my experience, you do get what you pay for but I'd love to find a cheaper instrument, like an Epiphone, that could compete with a pricey Gibson.
#16
Quote by stevenjmal
Xander_X

I've wanted a Jackson RR1 for years. I hear the USA Jackson necks are unrivaled. Good to hear some of the cheaper models are quality instruments too.


The entire Professional series Jackson put out in the early 90s were excellent guitars. So good that I stopped making them because they put too bug of a dent in their US sales.

The PRO models in the Professional line, were essentially exact copies of their US made counterparts. Very nice necks. Different profiles for different models (soloist/dinky/Rhoads/etc) but my Fusion is by far the thinnest, fastest neck I've ever put my hands on
#17
AFAIK, nothing I've bought has radically appreciated or devalued since I purchased them. But in fairness, I don't know the current FMVs on everything I own. And I am a bit of a bargain hunter, too, so I've gotten some killer deals.

The price of my Dean Time Capsule Cadillac (HHH version) has held steady +- since I bought it new. So have a few of my Jon Kammerers. In fact, one JKG I bought for a steal would probably quadruple in price the day I have Jon replace the neck.

A few of my Reverends have also held value pretty well, having lost only $100-200 value since I bought them. I have seen one for sale double what I paid, but that value wouldn't apply to mine, since THAT one was NOS/mint and mine has a sizeable ding on the edge due to an escaped hammer...

all that said, I HAVE seen some stuff on my G.A.S. list jump in price.
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#18
Only once.When i was a teenager many moons ago i got hold of an MIJ Squier Strat for £150.It was great but being young and having no internet back then and knowing next to nothing about guitars except how to play one I didn't know what i had and i sold it because i wanted a real Fender.I've always regretted it because it played great and sounded great.I wish i'd kept it.
Since then nah.I've probably been ripped off with all my guitars.
#19
My Greg Bennett Samick Ultramatic UM 4. I got it for a song, and they are going for as much as $500 these days. I think I paid a couple hundred for it. With Duncan Designed pickups, a Wilkinson trem bridge, and Grover tuners, this thing was built like a tank. Yes, the "flame" top is as thin as papyrus, but the workmanship is top notch for a Korean import. The strings are dead straight, so the tuning is very stable. A friend put coil splits in mine, so I have tiny toggles in it that allow me to split the bridge and neck in mine. They are actually hard to find. I've had it for 14 or 15 years now.

It sits along an American Fender Strat, 2 Gibson Les Pauls, a PRS Single Cut, and a PRS Custom 22, and I have yet to get rid of it. It's one of those guitars that just has a 'thing' I don't get elsewhere.
Last edited by GoldJim at Feb 22, 2017,
#20
Quote by stevenjmal
dspellman

Taylor guitars, along with Martin, are supposed to be some of the best acoustic guitars around. The only acoustic guitars I've ever had was my dad's old Yamaha FG-340, which sounded fantastic, and my Alhambra 7P. I have a Gibson Dethklok Explorer and I love it.


I have a Taylor 814ce and a '67 Martin D35. Both are exceptional guitars, without question. In both cases, I probably paid more than what they're worth intrinsically (even if less than their street price), just because I wanted them. I have a cheap Yamaha (don't recall the model, but nowhere near as good as yours) that I use for those beach Kumbaya things. It sounds nowhere near as good as the Taylor/Martin, but it's adequate. I probably paid exactly what it's worth (and it wasn't worth all that much). And that's okay, too.

Taken objectively, you'd have to consider whether the "Gibson" and the "Deathklok" logos were really worth what you paid for them.
#21
Quote by Xander_X
The entire Professional series Jackson put out in the early 90s were excellent guitars. So good that I stopped making them because they put too bug of a dent in their US sales.

The PRO models in the Professional line, were essentially exact copies of their US made counterparts. Very nice necks. Different profiles for different models (soloist/dinky/Rhoads/etc) but my Fusion is by far the thinnest, fastest neck I've ever put my hands on


Agreed I have a 1989 Charvel Fusion Custom and a 1993 jackson King V Professional (not a PRO ) these are probably the best of my 14 guitars I paid $350 used for the King V back in 95 and $350 used for the Charvel last year both in near mint condition.

I'd put my Charvel Fusion Custom up against any U.S.A. Jackson in a hearbeat, Jackson sent luthiers to japan to teach the Chushin Gakki workers how to build their guitars and you are correct they discontinued the PRO models because they were beginning to eclipse the U.S. models in both build quality and sales.

Including the Charvel I have 6 MIJ Jacksons all were purchased used from $175 for a mint DXMG to $499 for my minty RR3 with OHSC and Eerie Dess Swirl paint job!

I think that MIJ Jacksons are underpriced on the used market, mostly due to the high volume available, and are some of the best valued used guitars you can buy.

I also have a Washburn Parallaxe that is loaded with so many premium features that it should cost more than it does they sell new almost anywhere from $799-$899 and are easily worth $1500

As far as the rest of my collection I probably got what I paid for give or take a little.
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#22
Jackson Dinky - no tone to speak of (that was a very long time ago) I'll assume I just got a lemon.

PRS Standard 24 SE - sounds ok, albeit dark as hell, but plays like crap and the ball ends of the strings get stuck and I have to get them out with needle nose pliers. I barely ever pick it up. Again, I'll assume I got a lemon. I kept it to use as a guinea pig for doing all kinds of things to when I get back from lutherie school. Not a good first impression Mr. Smith.

Epiphone AJ500 Masterbilt acoustic - I liked it for awhile but after I got my Cordoba C10 I realized (even though that's a classical) the Epiphone sounded like complete crap. The Epiphone was my first acoustic and I didn't know any better at the time. Got rid of that one.

G&L Legacy strat - This was a mixed bag. It sounded great and played great (much better than I expected on both counts), but the setup was bad (the G would pop out of the nut slot if I did a bend at the upper frets). I sent it back because I shouldn't have to take a guitar to a luthier immediately after buying it. I'm still debating on whether or not to re-buy one; debating because I have to buy online so I can't check the setup before pulling the trigger and I don't know if I want to deal with another return. I will definitely get another G&L some day, just don't know how soon.

Cordoba C10 classical - I was actually shocked by how good it sounds. It's not quite as bright as I would like, but the bass is incredible; very piano--like in its authority. Dig this: When I first got it I kept hearing this sound that led me to believe there was a loose brace. Well, it turns out it was lack of experience with such a wide neck - it was fret buzz due to crappy technique! The buzz from around the first 4 or 5 frets sounded like it was coming from the sound hole. After a while I figured out what was going on, but I had previously never experienced such a resonant guitar. Every nuance goes straight down that neck and out of the sound hole. I paid $1000 for that one and I would have gladly paid much more for it. It sounds so good I ignored the slight defect it has (if I bend the G it makes a "tink" sound up at the tuners). I will fix this when I get back from lutherie school and I might even be able to work on the bracing to brighten it up a little. I don't know if that's possible, but I'll find out at school.

Gibson Les Paul Classic Custom (2012) - I upgraded to this from an Epiphone LP Prophecy EX that I paid $629 for blemished. Was the Gibson worth $1200 more? Well... yes. Once you hit the $1000 point, small gains add big money, that's just the way it is. It plays and sound way better than the Epiphone in my opinion. It also (inexplicably) came with a one-piece body. I don't know if that does anything for the sound quality, but it was a nice surprise and maybe gives me a little piece of mind knowing there's one less glue joint the vibrations have to go through. Maybe the joint makes it resonate in a certain way though, so... yeah... lol

The only thing I don't like about the Gibson is the plastic nut. Damn you Gibson... I've only had it four years and it needs a new nut already (the G is sitting a tad too low). I believe I've complained about a few things on here but it turns out I screwed the setup up but I got it all worked now; aside from the nut problem the setup is perfect with no fret buzz or anything. I even managed to get my G intonated which I couldn't do for the longest time (because of screwing the setup up, it was fine new).

That's about it... All my other guitars, my harmonica, and my keyboard (MIDI controller actually) have been as expected.
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Last edited by Prime2515102 at Feb 22, 2017,
#23
I'd put my Charvel Fusion Custom up against any U.S.A. Jackson in a hearbeat, Jackson sent luthiers to japan to teach the Chushin Gakki workers how to build their guitars and you are correct they discontinued the PRO models because they were beginning to eclipse the U.S. models in both build quality and sales.


Sounds like Jackson missed an opportunity, to me.
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#24
I thought the Chushin Factory just closed?
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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.

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#25
Quote by Dave_Mc
I thought the Chushin Factory just closed?


It may have, but Jackson / Charvel hadn't had any guitars made there since 1997 I believe.
#26
My Mayones Regius probably isn't worth it for most people. It was 3.3k and a lower specced Regius (with a 3A flame maple top instead of the buckeye burl mine has) plays and sounds just as good. On the other hand, I've yet to play a guitar that plays better than my Mayones and I love the look so much it was easily worth it for me.

My SG is hands down the best SG I've ever played. Well worth the price I paid. I wouldn't get rid of it for twice what a new one would cost me if I'm being honest.

My CS Tele is a really nice guitar and probably well worth the price to someone who's crazy about Telecasters and wants a good 52' RI that's a little different. For me, I don't play it nearly enough to really justify owning it, but I've got a love/hate relationship with it.

On than those, most of my guitars are cheaper stuff that has upgrades and that were well worth what I paid. LAG AK100 with EMG 60/81 for 150 euros. Ibanez RG7321 with a DiMarzio X2N7 for 100 euros. A Michael Kelly Patriot Baritone with a Bare Knuckle Aftermath in the bridge, paid 180 euros for it. I got an old Squier Bullet for 85 euros and it plays and sounds fine for the amount of times I want a Strat. And then I've got an Epiphone Thunderbird that I got for 120 with a gigbag and some other accessoires that's more than worth it for rock at that price and a Squier Jazz V with a Nordstrand pickup in the neck that I got for 280 that has been my main bass since I got it.

As far as not being worth it, the one that stands out is a Les Paul Classic I had. It didn't sound great and the skinny neck wasn't at all what I'm into. It was a pretty bland guitar and while I got it at a bargain price and made profit, I'm surprised it hasn't popped up for sale since I got rid of it.
#27
It's hard to quantify this sort of thing but I'm currently financing a Godin 5th avenue kingpin archtop guitar which has a brand new retail price of £550, which I have to say, is extraordinary value for money compared to what else is out there in that price range. Nothing about it suggests that any corners have been cut or that anything has been compromised in order to keep the price down... The last guitar that I said this about was an Ernie Ball Music Man that cost nearly 4x what this guitar costs

In short, It's simply a very well crafted guitar for a very competitive price, and for that I have to applaud Godin!
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#28
Quote by Xander_X
It may have, but Jackson / Charvel hadn't had any guitars made there since 1997 I believe.


Did they move factories? There have been MIJ Jacksons much more recently than that... they only stopped a few years ago (not sure exactly, but less than 5).
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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?
#29
Dave_Mc

Yes, I believe 2011 was the last year of MIJ production Jackson's. However, I'm fairly confident that the production was moved to another factory. They completely stopped having guitars manufactured in Japan for a few years in the late 90's.
#30
This is a tough question, I try to go used for everything I can, so I tend to find most guitar retail prices to be higher than what the guitar is worth (worth to me) its not as bad with mid range guitars but once you get up around the $1000 range I find the value tends to drop off as almost identical spec guitars can be had for 200-300 less - obviously there are exceptions.

If I stick to new gear...

SX furrian from Rondo Music - tele style guitar with P90 in the neck - it was on sale so I bought it for $98 and its a great guitar, the tuners could use an upgrade, and I'm not saying that its rivaling MIM or US teles but its definitely better than $98, I'd take it over any of the squiers I have tried that are 3 to 4 times the price.

Jackson USA RR1T - over priced - I was super pumped to get this guitar - and it was nice, but it wasn't worth what I paid for it, in my opinion. The finish, frets everything was great, the neck was a disappointment to me, didn't feel quite as good as lower model Jacksons that I had at the time. Again it was a good guitar but I didn't find anything about it that really stood out from $900-$1000 Jacksons.
#31
My MIM Fender Jazz, Fender Roadhouse Strat and my Schecter Stiletto Elite-5 for instruments, my jet city JCA20h for amps. For software, Bias FX jesus
#32
Quote by Xander_X
Dave_Mc

Yes, I believe 2011 was the last year of MIJ production Jackson's. However, I'm fairly confident that the production was moved to another factory. They completely stopped having guitars manufactured in Japan for a few years in the late 90's.


Ah ok, I'm not that well up on it, I guess.
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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?
#33
Dave_Mc

Someone here I'm sure would know a bit more details than myself. I have a lot of knowledge about Jackson / Charvel's pre-CBS buyout. But I kinda stopped caring after that. Their guitars stopped impressing me, for the most part, up until the last couple of years.
#34
I K0nijn I

Do you think any of your cheaper instruments are comparable or better than any of your more expensive guitars or does the price generally reflect the quality?
#35
Quote by stevenjmal
I K0nijn I

Do you think any of your cheaper instruments are comparable or better than any of your more expensive guitars or does the price generally reflect the quality?

That's sort of like asking if a cruise ship is a better quality mode of transportation than a 747.

They're fundamentally different guitars to serve different applications.
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#36
Quote by stevenjmal
I K0nijn I

Do you think any of your cheaper instruments are comparable or better than any of your more expensive guitars or does the price generally reflect the quality?


None of them come even close in build quality. That doesn't mean I don't enjoy playing them and they don't serve a purpose though, that being giving a sound/tuning I want every once in a while but not all the time. If I wanted to play 7 strings all day every day, I'd get a high end 7 string, for instance. I don't, so the RG7321 will suffice.
#37
Every headway/divisor guitar i've played and owned has been well above their price point. the thing is, they're pretty rare and hard to find here. the workmanship, the quality of woods used, unbelievable really. had 5 of them, each one as well built and beautiful as the last. i often say "PRS USA" quality as a comparison because that's what people can understand and relate to.

Brand vvhores abound with gear, and I've become one.
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#38
I think price definitely reflects quality more today than it did even in the early 90's and before.

My Peavey Destiny I paid $200 for a 10 years ago and was probably around $800 in 1990 new, is very close in quality to my 1990 USA Jackson SL1. You can still pick up Destinys for under $500 these days .... IF you can find one. They've been pretty scarce lately.

That's just an example.
#39
gregs1020

Headway at least has a Facebook site, but I've never seen one or a website for Divisor. Are they still around?
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Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#40
Quote by Xander_X
I think price definitely reflects quality more today than it did even in the early 90's and before.

My Peavey Destiny I paid $200 for a 10 years ago and was probably around $800 in 1990 new, is very close in quality to my 1990 USA Jackson SL1. You can still pick up Destinys for under $500 these days .... IF you can find one. They've been pretty scarce lately.

That's just an example.


yeah i think with the internet a lot of the more cult things have got a lot more popular- things like MIJ tokais, patrick eggles etc. aren't the good deals that they used to be.
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?
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