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Do you negotiate price on an amp the way you do on a bass

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by MAJOR METAL, Feb 11, 2005.


    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    Since i am out their looking for a new amp i was curious if you take the same concept in negotiating prices for amplification as you do with basses.Thanks
  2. I do- they're both sold by the same segment of the evil empire, so the same 'business' practices seem to apply, IME.
  3. hondo8671


    Apr 22, 2004
    Yes here is how , when you see how much the tag says,then ask - ok good but what is your bottom dollar? :eek:
  4. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    With Mesa gear, don't even try. For other gear, its worth a shot.
  5. DannyB


    Aug 17, 2004
    I've found that "that's not bad, but I saw it online for $xxx" will get you a price within 10 or 20 bucks of the online price... and you have the instant gratification that shipping doesn't offer...
  6. I've learned that most gear prices are negotiable, especially the used stuff. At the very least I always ask for them to cover the sales tax and a majority of the time they do.

    - granted, I am talking about heads and cabs worth several hundred dollars. I would feel foolish trying to talk down the price of a new $50 stompbox.
  7. Th9nker


    Mar 18, 2002
    I'm the son of a car salesman...

    I'll negotiate the price of a haircut...
  8. remo


    Jan 15, 2005
    I usually ask "how much margin is on this"... it usually shocks them to here someone use their own lingo and they also think you know you $hit... or as previously noted just go straight in with: "what is your best cash price on this"?

    the things you are dealing with are:

    the RRP (Recommended Retail Price) which is usually set buy the manufacturer or the local distributor (who has to add shipping costs etc).

    the COST price: this is how much the retailer paid for the item from the distributor

    and the MARGIN: which is the difference between the RRP and the COST.

    Be aware that there is no margin in some items so you just can’t negotiate. I find most big name brands have the biggest margins but the esoteric stuff have the smaller margins.

    In short the golden rule is ALWAYS ASK “can you do this for less", because if you don’t ask they will happily take the RRP price from you!!.. lol

    In second hand situations I also find its better to be positive and say thinks like “Its just what I’m looking for” or “You have really kept this in good condition” rather than pointing out the flaws and saying how crap it is.. Being nice usually makes the seller like you more and there for be happier to give you a good deal. If you act like an a$$ they will end up hating you and not giving you a good deal…

    Good luck!!
  9. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    I only negotiate price when the item is priced higher than it's value. I know some guys who won't buy a thing until they work the price down. If I find an amp I want, and it is a fair price, I buy it with no bargaining.

  10. davepack

    davepack Supporting Member

    Jun 16, 2004
    Denver, CO
    Depends where I'm shopping...
    If it's a GC, hell yeah I'll negotiate. Actually, I'll just have my friend that works there buy it for me at cost.
    If it's a smaller boutique, where the owner is actually struggling to make money, and not looking to screw the customer, I'll pay full price and hook him up.
  11. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Interesting question. Most of the basses I'm interested in are the "boutique" variety, so they're mostly custom jobs. In that situation, you're basically paying the craftsman, plus whatever markup the dealer (if any) takes. Most of the time the luthiers make a "strong recommendation" to the dealer about what the final price should be, and although there may still be some flexibility, it probably should be negotiated "up front".

    Most of my amps though, are production jobs in one way or another. And in that world, things are different. The competition is very fierce, and the markups very competitive. Plus, then there's things like the "quality discount" that manufacturers give to their dealers (assuming that a few percent of the units are going to be "bad", and the warranty considerations and so on - some manufacturers won't even fix an amp, they'll just ask the dealer to throw it away if it breaks).

    So I suppose, my answer to your question would be, "it depends what kind of amp you're looking for". If you're getting a used amp, there's probably quite a bit of room for negotiation. If you're looking for a new Walter Woods, forget it. The price is what it is, and it's non-negotiable. :)
  12. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    IME, it also depends on where you're buying it. In general, retail operations will haggle over price, but direct sales, such as Walter Woods or Jack Read, will usually sell units at the stated price.
  13. r379


    Jul 28, 2004
    Dallas, Texas
    I usually get about 30% off on basses and amps at the store where I do business. Depends on the manufacturer and not all manufacturers have the same wholesale/retail price structure. Mesa stuff (for instance) does not discount because the price break is built into the list price and dealers are not allowed to come off that price.
  14. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Yep. That's one of the big problems in the production world. Gibson is notorious for that kind of thing. They try to "heavily control" what the dealer can and can't do, in terms of pricing, and even advertising. IMO, it's somewhat of a miracle they're even still in business. But that's a whole different question. :)

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    Their isint much room for negotiating on Mesa gear?.
  16. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    There is no room whatsoever, as Mesa makes all of their retailers charge the same. This is not saying, however, that the prices do not periodically change.

    MAJOR METAL The Beagle Father Staff Member Supporting Member

    To me i find it hard to think that every instument or amplification unit in a place like GC is open for some price negotiating except Mesa.You learn something new everyday.
  18. Plain Old Me

    Plain Old Me

    Dec 14, 2004
    Well don't believe me! Go and try to negociate with Mesa gear, but I can almost guarentee you will not have any luck. Mesa also tries have only one retailer per area.
  19. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    i know alot of guys who use strong arm tactics, and that just aint me.

    instead, i've developed great relationships with alot of reputable dealers, and in turn, i've been giving great prices. on top of that, what i appreciate more is the customer service. :)

    but i have been known to use the ol' "this is all i got in cash", can you make me a deal. they can either make a sale right there, or deal with another wishy washy, kickin' the tires type.

    at the same time, its more about getting the best price offered, and not getting away with grand larceny, so low balling will get you nowhere.

    as for immovable price discounting, MANY manufacturers are doing this, i.e. if a vendor sells at a price other than the MSRP, that vendor loses his/her account.
  20. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Yeah, I totally agree with the first comment. The guys at my local GC know me pretty well. They treat me good, and offer me deals without even having to ask.

    When I do have to work a deal, I also make sure dollar bill cash is displayed.