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Gibson Price Increases


robekert

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I was on a few of the online guitar retailer's sites over the past few days. Seems Gibson has had a price increase. Does not seem like it is across the board but seems to have effected many of the company's offerings. The Songwriter Studio Cutaway A/E, for example, had a $400 price increase from $2149 to $2549 ](*,)

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I just noticed that as well... my 2008 Songwriter Deluxe Studio had a "sale price" of $1860 in the stores and an online price of $2000 back in January (I ended up paying less with a 10% coupon) but now that same guitar is listed with a "sales price" of over $2400.

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Holy crap! The Pete Townshend J-200 went up $600!

 

And the Hummingbird (formerly Modern Classic) went up $400.

 

I'm going to have to run and tell my wife how shrewd her husband is for buying all these last year and beating the price increases!

 

I already emailed DW and let her know to feel even better about my purchase in January.

 

I know prices go up, I was surprised at the increases on some of them, if you compare what I paid to the listed sale price now, it's an $800 difference.

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I predict....that they will choke on this increase......really.....talk about out of touch with reality.....Not only is world demand going down for tone woods for guitars, world demand for guitars is going down. And they are increasing prices????? I'm with AJSC.....buy used, get two used ones for the price of a new one...

 

This is what they did at Macy's a few years back.....raise the price of a pair of jeans 30%, then put it on sale for 30% off!!! The buyer really thinks they are getting a deal!!!!! How painfully obvious......

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Well Gibson has alienated a lot of the smaller music shops with thier difficult policies and requirements to be an Authorized Gibson Dealer

 

Guess it is only fair for them to alienate their customers too. It certainly seems like inopportune timing.

 

 

Yeah, my nephew has a music store in Florida. He carried Gibsons until they drove him to distraction with their ridiculous policies. He dropped them. He summarized it by saying they "are on his s**t list." He carries Roland products (he's a great keyboard player), and they know how to treat their dealers. He's one of the dealers that Roland flies to Japan annually to comment on existing and upcoming products, as well as to let Roland know what customers want. What a concept :-)

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It really makes you wonder at what point they'll hit the wall. Increases at a time when jobs are threatened and many people around the world are holding back on expenses? At what price does a potential buyer say ...I'm sorry your guitar is nice but so is a Rolls Royce...and I just can't afford one of those either? Fender has done the same thing...I just don't get it.

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In the early 90s the prices took a massive jump too, and it didn't hurt them. I think it was the Super 400 reissue that came out at about $4000 and soon jumped to $6000. Henry was asked about that and he said, "If they'll pay $4000, they'll pay $6000."

 

Hard to follow that logic, but he's a multi-millionaire and I drive an '82 Ford, so I can't say much.

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well... I know nobody likes price hikes... but here's a few observations from my end:

 

1) I agree that Gibson has alienated small shops, but maybe there's a reason for that? They do a lot of volume through mega-retailers. I don't know, I only know the local shop where I live didn't carry them, so i ended up driving an hour away and bought a Gibson. Their name will still provide them business

 

2) Used instead of new. Well, that works for some things, but unless you know exactly what you want, you have to try out an instrument. Had I found a used Songwriter Deluxe Studio I would have bought one, but I only found new. I think there are a lot of guitarists out there like me who aren't adding to a collection, but are looking for their one "right" guitar, and so they're going to look new and want to try them out.

 

3) Price increases - From my recent search for my ultimate guitar, I tried all the top of the line guitars. Gibson may be taking a big increase in prices, but they're still in line with their competitors. I paid $1680 for a Songwriter Deluxe Studio, and that was half or less than half than the Martins and Taylors I tried, and to my ears this Gibson sounded head and shoulders better. No contest. Would I have bought that Songwriter had it been $3500 out the door? Yes, but just not that day, but I wouldn't have bought that Martin or Taylor either. I think they're still very competitive with the other top guitar builders.

 

JMHO

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In the early 90s the prices took a massive jump too' date=' and it didn't hurt them. I think it was the Super 400 reissue that came out at about $4000 and soon jumped to $6000. Henry was asked about that and he said, "If they'll pay $4000, they'll pay $6000."

 

Hard to follow that logic, but he's a multi-millionaire and I drive an '82 Ford, so I can't say much.[/quote']

I think I get what he's saying...... if you've GOT that kind of money to spend on guitars, then you've got that kind of money to spend on guitars, period, and another $2000.00 is a drop in the bucket for people who are willing to spend thousands on guitars. But there might be a ceiling to that logic at some point. Some folks might start looking at some of the smaller independent builders who put out quality stuff that sounds good, like Thompson et al. It'll be interesting to watch what happens over the next year or two.

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Some folks might start looking at some of the smaller independent builders who put out quality stuff that sounds good' date=' like Thompson et al.[/quote']

 

Not to mention luthiers like Kevin Kopp and John Walker who "graduated" right from the custom shop at Bozeman. A number of those high-dollar customers might think twice when comparing the likes of a Kopp or Walker with a Gibson at "even up" prices.

 

All the best,

Guth

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Some folks might start looking at some of the smaller independent builders who put out quality stuff that sounds good' date=' like Thompson et al. It'll be interesting to watch what happens over the next year or two.[/quote']

 

I actually looked into several good quality smaller builders ( I spent probably 4 months total searching for my guitar) and what I found at least was that I was looking at a minimum of $3500 at these places. Huss and Dalton down in Stauton VA, Rockbridge guitars, I even found a custom luthier in my back yard. Now I live in virginia, so maybe in other places these prices are high.... I know I'm probably the odd man out here, but my observation was that Gibson was a good value...

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....... my observation was that Gibson was a good value...

Oh, I'm not saying that Gibson's not a good value, Stumps. All's I'm saying is that if the three *big* guitar companies (Gibson, Martin, Taylor) kept elevating prices, at some point it might force the issue for some. I think when people think guitars, those 3 names likely come to mind first, so those companies have an advantage that way. Both seasoned as well as new folks to guitars know those names, and trust those names. But if the prices started going through the roof.... the newbies might not be able to justify it and the seasoned have been in the field long enough to know that there's another whole market that's untapped and lower-priced. Just speculation really.

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OK, all we hear about in the news lately is how the economy is going down the tubes, this company cuts 6000 jobs, that company cuts 10,000 jobs, blah, blah, blah. If that's the case and everyone is worried about their financial future, I would think that buying a guitar for $1800 or more is not going to be very high on the list of purchases for the average household.

Does anyone know what percentage acoustics are to Gibson's overall business?

BTW, it seems to me that Gibson really shoots itself in the foot by leaving it up to Guitar Center to demo their products. Every time I go there, the Gibson's they have on the wall are out of tune, dirty or so freakin' high on the wall you can't get to them. Also, I usually stop by once every few of weeks and I have met reps. from Martin, Taylor, Breedlove and Takamine but no Gibson. I asked one of the salesman if the rep. comes by, he said no.

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Oh' date=' I'm not saying that Gibson's not a good value, Stumps. All's I'm saying is that if the three *big* guitar companies (Gibson, Martin, Taylor) kept elevating prices, at some point it might force the issue for some. I think when people think guitars, those 3 names likely come to mind first, so those companies have an advantage that way. Both seasoned as well as new folks to guitars know those names, and trust those names. But if the prices started going through the roof.... the newbies might not be able to justify it and the seasoned have been in the field long enough to know that there's another whole market that's untapped and lower-priced. Just speculation really.[/quote']

 

good point

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OK' date=' all we hear about in the news lately is how the economy is going down the tubes, this company cuts 6000 jobs, that company cuts 10,000 jobs, blah, blah, blah. If that's the case and everyone is worried about their financial future, I would think that buying a guitar for $1800 or more is not going to be very high on the list of purchases for the average household..[/quote']

 

I wish I'd write stuff down, my mind is slipping. I turned 40 like...2 months ago and already I can't remember people's names that I've known for decades.

 

anyway, I seem to remember reading a news article about how guitar sales are somewhat recession proof, people still pay for them? I would think that might more true for good quality acoustics than for high end electrics, but I have absolutely no proof of this, as now I can't remember where I read that....

 

sorry.

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Gibson is in line with other major builders with their prices. To think that you could go to a smaller builder and buy one of their guitars cheaper is a pipe dream. The quality may be better, but it won't be cheaper. Also, what makes you think that smaller builders don't also raise their prices to keep in line with other builders???

 

Also, as far as the "buy used" theory, don't you think used prices will also go up? Most people base their used pricing on a percentage of the price for a similar new model. They don't base it on what they actually paid for it years ago. If the new models increase in price, seems to me the used prices will soon follow. Then you're back to the basic decision of whether you buy used and take a chance or spend a bit more for a new one with a full warranty.

 

I don't like it anymore than anyone else does, but the fact is, most builders have price increases. Gibson acoustic can only make approximately 65 acoustics each working day. If they don't raise their prices to keep in line with everyone else, people would create much more of a demand than they can now fill. It doesn't make good business sense to keep their prices below everyone else, when they can increase the price and still sell all of the guitars they produce.

 

Most manufacturers usually raise their prices every year and people always complain about it. Fact is, Gibson still sells everything they produce. There will always be buyers at whatever cost. They may not be the buyers who can only afford to own one or two guitars. But there will be buyers.

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