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Gibson you ****ed up and you are continuing to **** up


Bwanadik

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I have just sent the following email to the dealer I ordered my Dark Fire from in the UK...

 

Hi,

 

After careful consideration and many weeks following the problems encountered by American Dark Fire owners via the Gibson Forum I have decided to cancel my Gibson Dark Fire order made on January 5th.

 

I have lost all confidence in Gibson's ability to deliver the guitar they initially advertised, free from faults and ongoing problems.

These problems include...

Broken/bent selector switches

Sharp frets

Faulty Master Control Knob (MCK)

Tuning problems

Faulty Robot Interface Pack (RIP)

Unimpressive non-flamed tops

 

A list of unresolved software bugs can be found here... http://forums.gibson.com/Default.aspx?g=posts&t=10683

 

Despite repeated requests to Gibson for a predicted UK release date these have been ignored. Gibson's last official update was on January 2nd. Their arrogance is astounding.

 

I think you are going to have a lot of disappointed Dark Fire customers when the guitar is eventually released in the UK.

 

On the bright side a least you can now sell the one I reserved for the higher price of £2399.00

 

Please refund £1957.43 ASAP.

 

Thank you.

 

 

So I guess that's it from me, good luck to all of you who are still waiting patiently.

I really hope you get "the world’s best guitar" but somehow I doubt Gibson can deliver.

Oh well, back to my R9....so long and thanks for all the fish.

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Just got a call from my dealer, thanking me for my order and patience. I should have a full refund by Monday.

He said his shop is seriously considering no longer offering the Dark Fire for sale due to all the problems/delays.

 

Apparently the Dark Fire is now known as the Back Fire. I rest my case.

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I completely agree on the lack of update part.

It's much more professional to update there status page every now and then (once a week? It doesn't take much effort to copy/paste it in to the form, it took me much more time to write this post #-o with a brief announcement like "Dear customers, we really appreciate your commitment and patience for the long anticipate Dark Fire, in the meantime we are still improving the instrument for your ultimate playing experience."

 

I.m.h.o. the problem with no updates is that it generates to much room for speculation/rumors towards a possible release date and thus a possible creation of false hope and a big disappointment when not met.

However this is only partially Gibson's fault, because they made it clear that they will provide an update when they have it (logical conclusion for me is that they still don't have an update on that, duh :).

 

I noticed this kind of frustration with a couple of Businesses and can completely understand this, but with a little effort from their part, the frustration can be eased.

 

The current bug list that are circulating around the interwebs doesn't really improve the situation, but I'm convinced they all get sorted out and as mentioned a couple of times on this forum, we all end up with a beautiful instrument :).

 

The only real concern from my part is how the top will look, I'm really hoping that I will end up with beautiful figured top.

As I can't justify spending such an amount on an other Les Paul for the next decade. Sorry Gibson, it's not that I don't want to, but I'm not a frickn rock star who can afford buying himself a new one every 2nd week (in the rare occasion that they even have to, if not getting one through sponsorship or dedicated towards them, ok ok I'm a bit dramatizing now, but you get the picture :). So this instrument has to be perfect for me, both on the sound and looks department. but as mentioned earlier, I'm not so much concerned about the sound part.

 

Personally, I would prefer that they would work out the kinks on the DF itself and ship the guitar without R.I.P..

(I mean the issue's that they have under their own control, but it's hard to tell in a situation where you have to work things out with multiple parties).

 

I joined the DF fleet recently and I'll end up paying up £ 2399 :( but I'm sheering my self up through telling my self that's still better than the €2999), but I was lucky enough to find a dealer who accepted a £250 deposit.

In the meantime, I'm trying to convince my self that nothing is going on (majority of the my DF savings are still collecting some minor interest on my savings account :) and really enjoy playing my Les Paul studio (+it gives me the time to convince here that I'm not going to cheat on here :).

 

 

Just my 2 cents *cough*

Cheers,

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I came across this posting on another forum called the gear page... for what its worth, true or a lie here it goes...

 

I toured the world for a couple years as a clinician for Gibson. At almost every show, I had "musicians" coming up to me bemoaning the massive price increases in Gibson instruments. (like I had something to do with it.) So I think to myself, I am going to relay these sentiments to the CEO Henry Juszkiewicz next time I see him.

So am at NAMM at the Gibson hospitality suite, I strike up a conversation with him and tell him of my experiences on the road all over the world. He laughed and said "I don't care about "musicians", they don't have any money. I want professionals (ie, doctors, lawyers, stockbrockers,ect.) with disposible income. I set the value point and they buy it." Give it up to him, it pretty much worked as planned, he pushed it as far as he could go, then seemed to back off a bit on pricing in recent years.

 

Quote is more about the pricing policy but this little peek into the mindset tells me why we are where we are going back & forth about the DF issues... Read into it what you will...

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The whole Dark Fire/Robot thing with all the gizmos, gadgets and doodads - I still don't get it.

Gimmicks, snake oil, pseudo-technical wizardry for the easily bored.

Over-priced, un-needed, like teats on a boar hog.

 

I won't even own a guitar with active pickups.

 

Sorry you guys didn't get what was promised to you, I really am.

Remember, Gibson (and others) often don't even deliver on their most basic models without quality/playability issues.

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Well, if your read carefully this forum in between the lines, we actually ARE mostly grown ups with disposable income and a day job...

 

And a few with a Mom with disposable income :-)

 

 

So Henry IS totally right with his business plan. It would be plain stupid to target the very market with no money, only to make endorsement deals with the happy few in it who happen to have some.

 

That being said, I have looked for alternative gizmo guitars, since my DF still is not 100% fixed, and you have a 7k Moog or a 10k Adrian Belew signature Parker (with Variax electronics), so after all DF is a bargain, at least for lawyers :-)

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That being said' date=' I have looked for alternative gizmo guitars, since my DF still is not 100% fixed, and you have a 7k Moog or a 10k Adrian Belew signature Parker (with Variax electronics), so after all DF is a bargain, at least for lawyers :-)

[/quote']

 

...Or a 6.5k Vernon Reid Signature Parker.

 

- Mat

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So Henry IS totally right with his business plan. It would be plain stupid to target the very market with no money' date=' only to make endorsement deals with the happy few in it who happen to have some.[/quote']

 

Wasn't suggesting he is right or wrong but I do think this quote explains the "attitude"... The core market is not the die-hard fans who are drying on the wine. The core market is the busy people with disposable income who will eventually buy all the Dark Fire's built no matter what.

 

In other words, I think, Henry wants to get the DF out once its perfect so the RMA costs don't drag the P&L down and till then he doesn't give a hoot how much dissatisfaction is expressed on these forums. After all there is a doctor, lawyer or a stockbroker out there who will eventually buy each and every DFs he will ever put out on the market.

 

I think that's the mindset but then again one can only speculate. I'm just glad to have mine for the time being. Flame or no-flame, its a keeper till I land a better one.

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The only real concern from my part is how the top will look' date=' ...[/quote']

 

yes me too ... and this is what will decide if i'm actually going to give my not so disposable income to henry or not. with this long delay i at least hope that it won't come with sharp frets and a sticky MCK or some of the other quality control fcuckups we've seen documented here, i sriously hope that these things are now especially taken care of.

 

if i had payed the full amount in advance i probably would have canceled the order already just because of this wood-picture-switch-stunt gibson pulled ... i'm a first time Gibson buyer, i don't like fenders anymore (had a few) and i was close to buying a PRS santana when i heard about the Back Fire ... i've always liked the Les Paul shape above all other e-guitar shapes and dreamed for many years now to one day own a 'real' ES-335 ... and i gotta say i'm not very re-assured as a potential new customer.

 

a few kind, explaining and mybe even reassuring words for pre-paying cutomers from the source could indeed go a long way ...

 

and MCK, thx so much for that link, this has gotta rank amongst the most ridiculous and hilarious threads i've seen in a long time :)

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I see your point for cancelling the order, but let me tell you... I am happy with mine (guess I happen to be luckyer then some others in that respect). It is weird, I have 4 other guitars and they are mostly collecting dust, unless I need the whammy for a particular piece.

 

Somehow, it is so much fun to play, even with it's quirks, that I am sure will be worked out with updated, and maybe a good set-up shop for the fine points (like sharp fret edges).

 

To me - it's a definite keeper, I don't care if it gains or looses value with time.

It's a piece of HISTORY (which is not always perfect) and the one that puts a smile on my face every time I open the case

and smell that "magic" scent.

 

And honestly - this guitar is much more then I, as a guitar player, deserve! And I am pretty good...

 

Too bad you never had a chance to actually play it...

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True

 

I have 30+ guitars and the Dark Fire is my #1 axe at the moment.

 

Also remember social studies class 101

 

* Happy customers seldom report and post on User Forums - only 20% of current Dark Fire owners visit this Forum.

 

* Disappointed customers will always report their complaints and post on User Forums, thus making it more likely for a product to appear inferior.

 

* Customers with over $2k tied up on deposit for 5 months will surely have grounds for making complaints.

 

 

Also there is a misconception that the Dark Fire will favorably compare one to one with the build quality and wood selection and finishing with every other $3500 guitar. It will not. Over 50% of the cost involves the technology package provided by third parties ( Tronical (onboard electronics) , Echo Audio (RIP), NI (Guitar Rig), Ableton (Live Lite) )

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The thing to remember is that this isnt just a guitar...its basically (if i understand correctly) a guitar with a computer inside it and a lot of fancy electronics.

These things never get released on time...PS3, Blu Ray....all the cutting edge stuff is delayed.

 

But, the one thing that costs nothing and is so simple to do is to communicate. I cant believe a mail shot to all prospective customers (ie people with firm orders) would cost that much and would go a long way to helping. I'm surprised Gibson in the UK havent just gone ahead and done this - if they are to be believed there are only 120 of us waiting.

 

And i dont think Gibson guitars are too expensive..theres enough competition out there and if the price becomes too high there are plenty of alternatives.

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Despite business models' date=' and others opinions of Henry, you have to admit that he will be known for trying to "raise the technology bar" by funding the R&D for Digital Les Pauls and Robotic Guitars. I'm glad he did. [/quote']

 

Not sure how much internal R&D goes on at Gibson. Seems like Tronical was a high synergy acquisition and I agree Henry is a visioneer there. You either innovate or get pushed aside so its not a choice in these times really.

 

... But' date=' the one thing that costs nothing and is so simple to do is to communicate. I cant believe a mail shot to all prospective customers (ie people with firm orders) would cost that much and would go a long way to helping. I'm surprised Gibson in the UK havent just gone ahead and done this - if they are to be believed there are only 120 of us waiting.[/quote']

 

Very well put. I completely agree.

 

True

 

I have 30+ guitars and the Dark Fire is my #1 axe at the moment.

 

Also remember social studies class 101

 

* Happy customers seldom report and post on User Forums - only 20% of current Dark Fire owners visit this Forum.

 

* Disappointed customers will always report their complaints and post on User Forums' date=' thus making it more likely for a product to appear inferior.

 

* Customers with over $2k tied up on deposit for 5 months will surely have grounds for making complaints.

 

 

Also there is a misconception that the Dark Fire will favorably compare one to one with the build quality and wood selection and finishing with every other $3500 guitar. It will not. Over 50% of the cost involves the technology package provided by third parties ( Tronical (onboard electronics) , Echo Audio (RIP), NI (Guitar Rig), Ableton (Live Lite) ) [/quote']

 

But the point of this thread is not that. We're not here to complain about DF, its bugs or its cost... We simply find it unacceptable as human-beings to be ignored.

 

Look, I have my DF, it is tops, I love it... so, technically I don't have a fish to fry with Gibson but I do sympathize with all the netizen friends here. I would have canceled my order long time ago as well if I was on a waiting list with no word from Gibson.

 

But I think it is clear by now that this would not change communication principles at Gibson. So everyone for themselves. Do as you wish, wait or cancel... 1 or 2 years from now Gibson will have sold all 4000 of those DFs and no one will cry a tear for those who suffered through these early stages. Lets move on.

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MCK, I of course agree with you totally.

 

Furthermore, I take it, also from my previous experience working for a manufacturer, a forum is a sort of information black hole where all the noise, complaints and esoteric thoughts from users get attracted, well away from the company's nerve system.

 

"In a forum no one hears you scream"

 

 

Then it may remain a useful place for exchanging information...

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... a forum is a sort of information black hole where all the noise' date=' complaints and esoteric thoughts from users get attracted, well away from the company's nerve system.

 

"In a forum no one hears you scream" ... [/quote']

 

And well away from the nerve system of the general public... The public that provides the paying doctors, lawyers and the stock brokers... Well maybe not the stock brokers for now but hey, you get my drift. Maybe we should make noise not on this black hole but on more visible locations where the noise is well heard... How about here for starters? Post your review as fairly as possible and be sure to provide good feedback on the "Customer Support" question!!!

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Despite business models' date=' and others opinions of Henry, you have to admit that he will be known for trying to "raise the technology bar" by funding the R&D for Digital Les Pauls and Robotic Guitars. I'm glad he did. [/quote']

 

Sorry e, but I'm going to have to disagree on this one -- Granted, Gibson spent 10 years of R&D to develop MaGIC, only to let it die in some confusing choices of chip implementation. They made a "digital" guitar only in the sense the output from the guitar to BoB is digital, other than that, the "digital" tag is meaningless.

 

Gibson didn't develop the robot tuners -- although they had the foresight to jump on getting exclusive right to the technology -- so no more self-tuning Strats. I think the Dark Fire is a great guitar -- wish I could get one, but there is no technology leap here -- Gibson is playing it pretty safe going to piezos and Firewire -- both (or similar) available on other guitars for quite awhile. What do you like about it? Great tone from the mags -- same as the Gary Moore and the PAF and P-90's its based on (but nice that they toss in that piezo -- like a Brian Moore or Parker). I assume you use the RIP to connect to your computer or VG-99 -- again, very cool, but no break through here --RMC, GraphTech, etc enabled this some time ago (the muxing interface on the signal is cool, but many vendors have been converting parallel signals to serial for transmission, so Gibson just implemented it in a cool setting.) How about the great action -- Plexing, not Gibson did that.

 

Seems to me what Gibson did, is put all this into a "great" package -- well great if they can get it all debugged. I have to side with the ones feeling ignored on this one -- Gibson could at least make some announcement about where they are on this. Go to the Guitar Center web site -- same announcement from last December -- no price, no guitars for sale (unless you are lucky enough to find one in a store.) Sweetwater had a write up in their newsletter, but no Dark Fires can be found on their site. My local dealer (Chuck Levin -- an institution in the DC area and long long time Gibson dealer) can't get one and doesn't even appear to be a Gibson dealer any longer -- but they can't be sure since Gibson won't really tell them. Then there is that Best Buy thing -- any one seen a DF there?

 

Despite Gibson's tendency to kill small business that they buy, I do feel Henry is a good businessman. However, when he took over, he basically said that Gibson was making a fine product at a good price, but that he was able to jack up the price and sell the same guitars on nostalgia and "custom" name, so when getting a (current) Gibson, I always feel like I'm paying more than I should. Yes, great guitars, but I think they are that way due to the technology laid down by Les, not Henry.

 

Charlie

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But the point of this thread is not that. We're not here to complain about DF' date=' its bugs or its cost... We simply find it unacceptable as human-beings to be ignored.

 

Look, I have my DF, it is tops, I love it... so, technically I don't have a fish to fry with Gibson but I do sympathize with all the netizen friends here. I would have canceled my order long time ago as well if I was on a waiting list with no word from Gibson.

 

But I think it is clear by now that this would not change communication principles at Gibson. So everyone for themselves. Do as you wish, wait or cancel... 1 or 2 years from now Gibson will have sold all 4000 of those DFs and no one will cry a tear for those who suffered through these early stages. Lets move on.[/quote']

 

MCK, the whole point of this thread is that we are trying to educate Gibson in the (probably vain) hope that they WILL, in fact, change their communication principles.

Yes, we realize that this will probably NEVER happen but, as paying customers, we have the right to compain - even if those complaints are falling on deaf ears.

What Gibson are doing is alienating people like me who already own several Gibsons and will NEVER buy another one despite the love that I have for my existing collection.

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I fully agree with the point of this thread. All I'm saying is that if you wish them to take notice you probably want to make noise elsewhere, at more visible & vocal outlets. Picketing in front of the upcoming European equivalent of the NAMM for example... Post on harmony central, CNET etc. That's all I was trying to say. Obviously whatever we say here is not making any difference. It may be observed & heard no doubt but ignored for sure.

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