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Buying guitars online experience

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Rockinvet, May 6, 2020.

  1. Old Plank

    Old Plank Tele-Afflicted Gold Supporter

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    I once ordered a new model online, an Axl Eldorado, that had some pretty good reviews and was quite lower priced, a Tele kinda design with a cool rustic look to it .... well it arrived in a plastic bag inside a cardboard box, no case or gig bag, and the reasons for the great price were immediately obvious, it was pretty rough and hardly what was indicated in the reviews and I have to wonder who wrote them .... anyway I disappointedly bagged it back up and sent it back.
     
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  2. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Doctor of Teleocity

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    .... [ERROR] DOES NOT COMPUTE
     
  3. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy Tele-Afflicted

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    I have been happy with my 3 online purchases so far. One was brand new off Sweetwater while the other 2 were used.
     
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  4. 985plowboy

    985plowboy Friend of Leo's

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    I’ve had good experiences.
     
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  5. fattboyzz

    fattboyzz Tele-Meister

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    I found it an even better endevor to assemble my own ;)
     
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  6. Scooter91

    Scooter91 Tele-Afflicted

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    i

    I like the looks of that new Epi SG that has the wavy mahogany veneer! :cool:
     
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  7. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Doctor of Teleocity

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    I'm kind of torn on this it's kind of a cool look, but here you can sure tell it's a veneer. Look at the sides!

    I know the do this as unlike real Gibson SG's which may have 1 or 2 piece bodies, the Epis have 3 or 4 - so they use a veneer, which on top of being a veneer, is a different species mahogany from what the dang bodies are made of! Still, I want one, sharp guitar! 20200429_085359.jpg
     

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    Last edited: May 8, 2020
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  8. boxEVILbox

    boxEVILbox TDPRI Member

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    I’ve had better luck buying used stuff online over new.
    Sweetwater has always done well for me buying new online, but I’ve had a few stinkers buying directly from Fender.
    I’d always prefer to try in person first, but being a lefty makes that almost impossible. Also, the world is changing. Even the smaller guitar shops have become like GC now- guitars are never set up at all, hanging on the walls without ever being tuned, and stuff like that. When I have found something that seems good in a shop, I spend more time getting the strings stretched enough to tune than I do playing.
     
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  9. jave276

    jave276 TDPRI Member

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    You could try www.tonepedia.com for experiencing the guitar (or pedal) online. Not a lot of electric guitars yet but its growing.
    I am one of the founders and we built it to help exactly in these situations. While it cannot transfer the feel of the instrument in your hands, it can present the general characteristics of the sound by comparing the product to its peer group. Everything is authentically recorded.

    I am happy for any feedback! Hope it helps.

    (Admin if it's not ok to share this please remove)
     
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  10. SoK66

    SoK66 Tele-Afflicted

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    Thinking back, all the guitars I've purchased over the past twenty years have been online. There's only one quality music store within 200 miles of my location. A few of them I would not have purchased had I been able to play them beforehand. Notably, a new 2006 Gibson '59 Les Paul VOS from Musican's Friend / Private Reserve guitars should have never left the factory. Great guitar now, but took new nut, bridge and a reset of the bridge posts to put right. Another new Gibson, a 2009 '59 reissue ES335 should have also never left the factory as it was. Also needed a new nut & bridge, but the worst flaw, it is the only Gibson I've ever seen with a compound fingerboard radius. It's 9 1/4" at the nut and 12" at the 22nd fret. Gibson did the frets on their PLEK machine and those can't deal with a compound radius, so they just crowned the frets at 12". It was unplayable until my local luthier crowned the frets to match the board. It's ok now, but c'mon.

    Notably, all the Fenders I've purchased online have been great, including a NOS 2000 Robben Ford Elite that was spectacular. I will never buy another Gibson without playing it first.
     
  11. JJLC

    JJLC Tele-Holic

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    There are way too many variables to list but here are my top three.

    (1) every guitar is different, period. You could have 100 examples of the same guitar and they would all be different, to some degree; some to a great degree. Why? It's all in the lumber. Every guitar has it's own lumber physics signature, thus it has it's own sonic signature, and it's individual weight. Too many variables related to this one factor alone. Many have never considered the lumber physics attribute of instruments.

    (2) Strings on guitars in guitar shops typically suck, from my experience. They are either too old, too light or too heavy (gauge), and often won't stay in tune. Back in the day trying & buying in person used to be the thing but even then it was not that simple. Most shops just refuse to keep a good set of strings on so many guitars. It is nearly impossible to fairly judge any guitar IMO until you have it strung with a new set of strings that you typically string your guitars with. Then there is the set-up; I won't even go there.

    (3) The seller: Buying on-line will potentially expose the buyer to a wide range of sellers, from complete idiots, to the most responsible & consistent. I got into guitars 50 years ago; yes, I'm old. :lol: It didn't take long for me to realize there are a LOT of flaky folks in the guitar world, and some of them do stupid, unethical ****. I'm not talking about people making mistakes, we all make mistakes some times BUT I'm talking about sellers just misrepresenting, at the least, or lying, at the worst. There are some sellers that won't offer any communication, and some act like if you ask a question you are imposing on them. If a seller seems shady, shifty, inconsistent, indifferent, unreliable, etc., those are red flags in my book. I just walk away from those types, period.

    There are my views, and that is based on 50 years of playing, buying, selling, trading, etc.
    When I first started buying everything was done in person. I purchased from pawn shops quite a bit but those days are long gone. I eventually purchased & sold on eBay, and sold via private sells on-line. I have been selling on Reverb for the past few years. I really like the Reverb platform, and they have good support IMO.
    If anyone is considering purchasing on-line always make sure to check the seller's feedback, closely.
     
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  12. blues

    blues Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    CME used EJ Strat. Very good
    Wildwood WW10 Strat great
    Wildwood Thin Skin Tele great
    Sweatwater Never again x2
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2020
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  13. DekeDog

    DekeDog Tele-Afflicted

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    I'd be much more likely to buy an electric guitar from Sweetwater than walk into a Guitar Center. Once at a GC was enough.
     
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  14. Rob L

    Rob L Tele-Meister

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    Lately I've bought everything offline. Mainly Zzounds but I actually bought two off..gasp..Amazon! A Jackson Dinky and Ibanez bass. The bass was fine but the Jackson needed major setup which my shop guy did. It's always just minor issues like fret edges and setup but when it comes to setup I have gotten store bought ones that needed a setup. I like my action so low the strings almost buzz and to date not one store bought/online guitar has it like that.
    I did have one problem. Bought a Talman acoustic/electric and the neck was set in at an angle making the high E string off the fret board at the bottom and it was full of chips and pain missing and rub marks like it was used. I sent it back to Zzounds.
    Other then that no problems. Except I can't set a guitar up worth crap and now with covid my go to guy's shop is closed. So I've saved a ton of videos to learn how to do it since I'm now putting TWO guitars together. It was just one but somehow became two..lol
     
  15. Loaded Goat

    Loaded Goat Tele-Meister

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    Same experience. I've bought eight new online. Some sharp fret ends and a "cocked" tuning peg are the only issues I have encountered.
     
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  16. jconos22

    jconos22 TDPRI Member

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    most on line experiences are good, I buy from Sweetwater. One issue, JA90 Tele came in with a poor pup selector switch.....I called, they said sorry.....but I thought it went thru this 55 point inspection???? so how did that get thru w/o being noted???? I could have sent it back,,,but did not....
    Will be ordering a new Tele Performer soon, a little hesitant.
     
  17. Supereditor

    Supereditor TDPRI Member

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    I purchased my favorite electric (an American Elite Telecaster) from Sweetwater. It was outstanding out of the box. Never even had a local setup. I also purchased a used Godin A6 Ultra from Guitar Center. It was almost like new and plays like a dream. Only good luck so far.
     
  18. premiumplus

    premiumplus TDPRI Member

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    I've bought three guitars online. Chicago Music Exchange had a sale going a few months ago on the Heritage H-535. It's their take on the 335. They sent me some pictures and I picked one out. It's one of the best guitars I've got.
    Then there was Sweetwater with the Epi Amos Flying V. They sent me one that had issues with a bad fret, promptly sent me a return label and a replacement guitar that was just fine.
    I also bought a cheap LP knockoff from Thomann in Germany. A Harley Benton. It arrived in perfect shape. I was amazed by the quality of a $275 guitar. I have a Custom Shop Les Paul Custom that is my current #1. Absolutely amazing instrument. But that little Harley Benton LP is killer for the $. I put some '57 Classic pickups in it and it's a great open mic night guitar.
     
  19. Pickingthru

    Pickingthru Tele-Meister Gold Supporter

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    I decided I had to have a MIA tele. No budge from GC on price. Went to REVERB and found a new Fender American Performer Tele HUM for a few hundred less. Bought it after a brief negotiation with the selling company, Texas Tour Gear as it turned out. Arrived quickly with no issues. Plays well.
     
  20. dajmacd

    dajmacd TDPRI Member

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    Bought a used 1990s ESP Traditional from Elderly Instruments in 2018. Though I couldn't tell from the pics, it has a perfectly quartersawn neck with a nice flame to it. A little finish wear on the back of the neck at the headstock presumably from a wall hanger. Other than that, perfect. I've made some bargain purchases online that turned out great as well. Bought a dinged up import Jackson Rhodes neck-thru from GC that had the original Duncan Designed pups swapped out for a US JB and '59. Installed a new selector switch, new tuning machines, buffed it up, awesome guitar with less than $225 invested.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2020
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