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Gibson prices really aren't that bad......

Messages
910
I know we all like to bash Gibson on their pricing being excessive. I ran across something very interesting this morning that I thought I'd share.

I was in my library (a/k/a bathroom) when I ran across a Musicians Friend catalog from 1999. For spits and giggles I was looking through it and was quite surprised at what I found.

In 1999, the street price on a Les Paul Studio was $849. Today, that very same guitar has a street price of $799..... A Standard was $1,699, which is just about the same today. Same story with the SG Standard. Epiphones were similar. $699 for a Joe Pass then, $599 today.

Fender, however, was an interesting contrast. A standard Tele was $319, as opposed to $499 today. A Deluxe Reverb was $719..... Today it's $999. That's an increase of almost 30%.

I'm not necessarily defending Gibson (or more accurately Henry). I still think he's an idiot. Nor am I bashing Fender. Yes, you can pay a lot more for a Les Paul Studio today if you choose to. There are a lot more choices now then there were then. But in retrospect, you can still get a "real" Gibson for about the same money as you could 13 years ago. You really can't say that about many other products.
 

tamader74

Member
Messages
3,675
....in '99 that J pass was MIK, Now it's MIC, A big labor cost difference, let alone QC difference, alot of changes in global trading alone since '98 when the flood gates of free trade opened WIDE, in more than just Instruments.......One thing that kept me alive through all of this, was also the greater forming of the World Health Org.,.....in '99 with the form of Cancer I had, it was an immediate death sentence....I am alive today because of that advancement......Yeah, I Bitch because I'm short about 20 'gits,amps and Drum kits.....But, at least I'm alive to bitch (lol).....and another thing the Chemo. cured was my corksniffing, I'm building back my gear based on the piece, not who made it.....I just cannot support Ohenry, But, he really ain't Gibson is he?, Orville,Epi., and the boys were around way before him, So, pricing from 13 yrs. ago is a non-issue................Just my 4.36 cents worth....(U.S. of course)
 

jjp

Senior Member
Messages
656
A Standard for $1700? On which planet is this? In Toronto at long & McQuade's, a national chain, and owner of the distribution source for Gibson in Canada, they are $2600.

I don't like to bash "Gibson" per se, but I love to bash Henry J. Unfortunately for the guitars and the employees who work there, because he is the face of Gibson, it is virtually impossible not to bash "Gibson". In reality though, I think we are bashing Henry and all that he represents as he is the one making the decisions and actions that send us into a tail spin. I love my LP. Regretfully, every time I look at it, I am reminded of him, and that is why I will bnever buy another one new.
 
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Twangdaddy

Member
Messages
681
Certain used Gibson models can be reasonable, especially in this economy. Just got a 1978 Les Paul Pro Deluxe for $1.400.00.

Had one, sold it, but I missed the narrow, ebony board neck too much. Boat-anchor heavy, but an awesome guitar. Sustains like a mofo.

They are getting expensive new. But like everything else, you get what you pay for - mostly. :•)
 

docsmith

Member
Messages
466
In raw materials? Perhaps.

But when you take that wood & magnets and put into the hands of a master craftsman like Tom Anderson or John Suhr, the wood & magnets will be transformed into a work of art - the value of which is at least 4 times as much.



Anything more than $1000 for wood and magnets is a waste of money.
 

tamader74

Member
Messages
3,675
Hey ProToneThinLine, I hope you got my end of your point....There has been alot of changes and model offerings ( In fact to many cercerning Fender and Gibson IMHO) since '99...Take Fender for instance the Hot Rod series 'gits ( Big Apple, Lonestar, roadhouse) started out as a offering as a USA build in colaboration with GC and none other than Long time LP man Lee roy Parnell and was $799 w/a rect. Fender tolex, with red interior OHSC., When Mr. Parnell went back to his LP's, Fender changed the series name ( still USA made though), within a few years, The Lonestar and the Roadhouse was a MIM deluxe 'git, and the Big Apple was dropped, and I maybe wrong on this end, But, the studio that was $899'ish in '99 is now a $1299-$1399 (non-bound) studio,...But, If I missed your point, please clarify as everyone on this boards thoughts are important, at least to me, Tom
 

treeofpain

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,285
In 1999, the street price on a Les Paul Studio was $849. Today, that very same guitar has a street price of $799.....
But the only Studio in 1999 had a gloss finish, and you are comparing it to the faded/worn finish. A gloss finish Studio is now $1399.
 
Messages
910
But, If I missed your point, please clarify as everyone on this boards thoughts are important, at least to me, Tom
My point had more to do with economics than guitars. We all like to complain (myself included) about how Henry is screwing us over. In reality, inflationary increases on Gibsons have not been as bad as we might think. In fact, some prices are lower today than 10+ years ago. Compare these changes to the cost of gas, for example - talk about getting screwed over........

Now let's not include some of Henry's brilliant new products, like the Dusk Tiger, etc.
:sarcasm
 

omfg51

Member
Messages
2,915
Well I see there are HUGE amounts of std trditionals, std pluses, and other special models that are 2000 or more. But the one single std I found was 1500.
 

Mikey2201

Member
Messages
1,415
I bought an LP custom for $2600 in 2005 the same guitar is now $3900
Has anything changed on them YES they are weight relieved or chambered, mine was solid wood 10+ pounds. Is that change worth $1300 nope
 

gillman royce

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,652
Just remember that Gibson cuts corners on any guitar that has a mslp of $3k & under - like not gluing in the frets, for one.
 

Kardula

Member
Messages
340
my qualm with gibson is that the $2600 have rather poor QC on those guitars. If i'm getting into that price range I want to be comfortable knowing that if I play 5 guitars, all five will be really good, and there should be one that is "great" or speaks to me.
 

tnt365

Member
Messages
3,044
OP, I don't think you have thouroughly understood the arguments that have been made, so really it is the posters thus far that have been wasting their breath per se. Let me try to simplify the reasons why your argument is bogus:

1) Your comparisons are incorrect. The guitars you are comparing are not equivalent in quality, place of manufacture or features. The newer models that you are claiming are equivalent to the older models and are "cheaper" or "the same price" are actually totally different products made at a different price point .The new models are cheaper because the company cut more corners.

2) Not only have prices not gotten "cheaper" or "remained constant", they have gone up if you want the previous level of quality. Gibson's reply to why they weren't using Rosewood on lower models anymore was complete ****. "It's better so we are putting it on out cheap stuff", I mean COME ON, who is that stupid. When you see the higher models still having rosewood, and every other manufacturer still using it, how can they claim that this new composite material is somehow better and that's why they only use it on lower models? Gibson has become SHAM-WOW!

BTW, I enjoy Gibson products, and I will continue to buy used models, but I just think the direction of the company is going downhill, with all due respect. I'm not a fanboy, I'm not a hater, I'm just a consumer.
 






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