Buying from a website vs a store

User avatar
Zabava77
Posts: 70
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2016 1:07 pm
Location: New Jersey, USA

Buying from a website vs a store

Post by Zabava77 » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:08 pm

I own a wonderful conservatory quality Alhambra 7C, but would like eventually to acquire a concert instrument. I am not planning to build a collection, just to have an instrument as a source of joy, sort of a lifetime companion.
There are plenty of choices and great names. Recently I listened to a composition played on Paco Santiago Marin 30th cedar and fell in love. However, guitar stores near me (within a reasonable driving distance) don't carry this luthier's guitars. Would it be advisable to order from ***link to commercial site removed*** (Mod edit: search for guitarras de luthier) for example, or only look into available store inventory (very impressive, as well)?

Thank you!
Carpe Diem

Alhambra 7c
Ricardo Ramos 2015 No. 67

Jack Douglas
Posts: 1630
Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2015 2:37 am
Location: Foxfire Village, NC

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by Jack Douglas » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:43 pm

Check out Zavaleta's La Casa De Guitarras, a Delcamp Member, located in Arizona. In Philadelphia 'The Classical Guitar Store'. In New York, Savage Classical Guitar; their web site is a bit difficult. In Baltimore, Kirkpatrick Guitar Company. The Guitar Salon, NYC.
There are other companies; I've just named one's that are either near New Jersey or may have the Spanish Guitar you're seeking.
Richard Brune 'Artist' Cedar/Brazilian 1996

User avatar
Keith
Posts: 1562
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 5:48 pm
Location: Commiewealth of Marxachusetts

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by Keith » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:49 pm

Zabava77, generally it is good to try out a guitar first but, as you have found out, it is not always feasible. Buying via an internet store/dealer is done all the time and the key variables are: shop the seller (make sure he or she is reputable) and a trial period (generally is 3 days). As to the guitar in question, I used your link and the guitar in question has a price of "inquire" which usually means the guitar is in the 7 figures (minimum of $10K). There are issues from buying abroad; CITES, shipping costs (especially if you return it after the trial period), import taxes, etc. It is doubtful you will find a Marin locally although you do live close enough to NYC and you can google The Guitar Salon (the one in NYC not in CA) or Luthier Music. Guitar Salon International (the one in CA) may carry his lines. The Guitar Salon in NYC has some great instruments and is run by a classical guitarist who has a good reputation.
be true to the one you love but have many flings with different guitars

guitarras en la espiritu de la:
Marcelo Barbero
Jose Ramirez III

Phillymike
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2018 2:40 pm
Location: Philadelphia, PA

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by Phillymike » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:50 pm

Depending on where you are in New Jersey, I'd second the recommendation to make a trip into Philadelphia to visit The Classical Guitar Store on Sansom Street. I recently bought a luthier made guitar there (Daniel Bernaert) and was very impressed with the amount of time and effort they invested to make sure it was the right instrument for me (and my budget). (Full disclosure: I also take lessons there.) If they don't have the particular guitar you're looking for, they may be able to order one for you. Good luck with the hunt.

http://www.classicalguitarstore.com/guitars/

simonm
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9377
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:22 am
Location: Spain, IB

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by simonm » Wed Jan 30, 2019 4:13 pm

Did you hear the guitar in person or are you referring to a you tube recording or some such? If the latter, you may find that in real life the instrument sounds quite different.

I saw a recent post here where someone was "in love" with a guitar based on a youtube recording. When I listened to the recording the only things I could say about the sound was that it was over-processed, had way to much reverb added and told nothing about what the guitar would sound like. Remember also that really good professional players can probably make a plank, with stings attached to nails, sound good.

Looking for guitars in this price range, take your time, and don't be afraid spend time and money traveling to try out as many as you can. If you are still happy with the 7c then there is no pressing reason to rush to get something else so you can take your time. Remember also that as you progress your taste may well change.

One sold here a while back. Here is the thread. viewtopic.php?f=76&t=108582&p=1154902

As mentioned above you will need cites paperwork to ship/import/export anything with rosewood in it so private international deals are potentially difficult in this respect.

User avatar
Zabava77
Posts: 70
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2016 1:07 pm
Location: New Jersey, USA

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by Zabava77 » Wed Jan 30, 2019 4:24 pm

Thank you so much everyone for your valuable advise! I see that nothing beats firsthand experience with the particular instrument.
Carpe Diem

Alhambra 7c
Ricardo Ramos 2015 No. 67

User avatar
robin loops
Posts: 3272
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 8:57 am
Location: California

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by robin loops » Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:10 pm

I always try to buy local when possible so that we continue to have local music stores when we need to run down and buy something right now. If we don’t support them with the bigger purchases, they can’t afford to stay in business just to sell accessories.

That being said, if they don’t have what I need (or want) I get it online rather than selecting something they do have as an alternative. But I usually check to see if they can order it for me themselves. Also most local stores will price match (reasonable) online prices. Win win for everyone when they can get what I need. Also makes returns simpler if there is an issue.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them.
-James-

ivan
Posts: 412
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2011 11:28 am
Location: Jakarta - Indonesia

Re: Buying from a website vs a store

Post by ivan » Thu Jan 31, 2019 3:47 pm

Please beware when examining a guitar through recording / youtube videos from some dealers. They trick the customers, manipulating the sound by adding too much reverb etc. It is almost impossible to judge the real sound.
Recently, my friend is buying a guitar based on youtube videos made by a super reputable dealer. It is a bigname guitar, made by extremely reputable luthier, insanely expensive, 8 years waitlist. And it turned out to be a disaster! (Poor craftmanship, poor set up, sounds quite nice but nothing special). Bottom line : 5 stars price, 3 stars quaility level.

Return to “Advice on buying, selling or valuing a guitar”