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ef_in_fla

Epi prices going up Sept 1?

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This issue was a hard one for me not to over-react on. I think that all in all' date=' Epiphones have been priced around the same for quite some time now. I mean, the Epi Les Paul plain-top at $399 for all finishes was a GREAT deal, to me. The rise to $449 was probably overdue and a bit more like it for the market. But, I do think that Epi is pushing it a bit with this one. $549 for the Plain-top right now?????? It is quite well known now what kind of price saving mystery mixes of "wood" Epi uses now, and I could see $549 with a solid MAPLE cap under the top veneer, but this increase goes past the "inflation" issue IMO. If Epiphone "has to" raise their prices due to cost issues, then they have failed as a business in the first place. If their costs to make these guitars have risen so much now being made in CHINA (which took a while for people to accept as it was), then maybe the next step should be Indonesia? Who knows, whats the difference anyway. My $249 Squier Vintage Modified P Bass (Made in Indonesia) knocks my socks off for the money/quality/performance ratio. Their new "Classic Vibe" series is said to be absolutely killer as well. Epi needs to get with it. I haven't totally turned my back on Epi yet, but they are now entering price ranges that they almost have no business in.

Ok, back to happy Epiphone discussion...........[/quote']

 

Like Smith said, energy prices are increasing the cost on EVERYTHING. But as you say above, China isn't the cheap market it once was. The cost of manufacturing in China has risen exponentially as that country's economy grows and wealth increases. There was just a CNN Money article on this recently.

 

Gibson actually owns their China factory, so we might see them outsource some lower cost guitars to other countries, but I'd imagine we'll see the midrange and higher (but sub Elitist) line Epiphones coming from China for the forseeable future.

 

Fender does get good work out of Indonesia. I have a Squier '51 that I picked up when they were blowing them out for $99 that is very well made and constructed. However, there is quite a bit less labor involved in building a slab bodied bolt on neck Fender type guitar vs. a set neck arch top like an Epiphone Les Paul.

 

You might be able to get a solid Maple cap for $549, but not the rest of a guitar to go with it [-X

 

Wonder how much the '56 Gold Top is going to go up? Been GASing for one for a while but holding off...

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The Firebird provided immediate relief of GAS... amazing....as I have barely let go of the guitar all week ....I have not had a relapse yet....

Dr. Epi knows the cure...

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The Firebird provided immediate relief of GAS... amazing....as I have barely let go of the guitar all week ....I have not had a relapse yet....

Dr. Epi knows the cure...

 

So do I...it's called formaldahyde....:)

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Well' date=' that pretty much ends my interest in any new epis. The prices were already borderline for me. The higher prices are now WAY overpriced imo. [/quote']

 

OK, I guess everyone will hate me for saying this...but this statement really, really annoys me.

 

Can anyone honestly look at a new G-400 (for example) at $399 and say, "No way is that thing worth that money?" No. You can't.

 

We buy these guitars, they are very well made, and those of us who buy them must derive a lot of pleasure from these instruments, otherwise we wouldn't be on this forum talking about them all the time. So, for a retail price of only $399, Epiphone can manufacture the guitar in China, ship it to the west, and make a profit whilst also allowing the domestic distributors and retailers to also make their substantial profits. Can you think of anything else you spent $399 on recently, which has the potential to give you a lifetime's pleasure?

 

I wonder how much of that $399 a worker at the Qingdao factory sees? Do you think you would work for his pay cheque? You might have noticed that the Chinese Yuan has grown and grown in strength against the US Dollar over the past 18 months. So now there's a problem - something's gotta change to keep the margins the same...do you really think that the big musical instrument retailers are going to allow their profits to be even slightly diminished to restore the equilibrium? If you do, then think again.

 

Someone's going to get dinged here. So either the guy who makes the thing ain't gonna get his meagre raise this year, or alternatively you can find another another $100 if you want the guitar that badly. Personally, I prefer the "you finding another $100" approach.

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While I would have a problem paying $800 for an Ebony Custom I would NOT have (and did not have) a problem paying $1100 for an Elitist. When I first got my Ebony Custom (back two weeks ago when they were $649) I felt that this was about the most I would pay for a guitar of that quality - it had a few major dents in the top body binding and the fingerboard work was noticeably inferior. I sent it back for the Elitist (which I received yesterday) and this guitar is spot-on perfect - worth every cent of its price.

 

I think the price gap between the basic Epi Custom and the Elitist Custom is too tight now ($300 apart). I would advise anyone thinking about getting a Custom to pony up the extra $300 for the Elitist because the difference in quality is amazing.

 

Curt

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