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Guitar Center... good??? weird

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by kaboom133, Dec 17, 2004.

  1. kaboom133


    Oct 19, 2001
    Latrobe PA
    Sorry for the long post, you may not, but I found this kind of funny.

    I picked my guitarist and my brother up after school yesterday for a trip into Pittsburgh to find some PA speakers. We planned on going right to guitar center, but when we got close I remembered a used music store, and I thought I'd check that out first.

    So in we go. It's a decent sized music store with a lot of inexpensive used gear. I walked over to the PA section, while the guitarist of course went to the guitars. While I'm looking at the pa speakers, I see the "music store rock star" (you know what I'm talking about, the long haired guy in his 40's that works at EVERY music store and knows more about everything than everyone) talking to Eddie, my guitarist. Eddie keeps laughing for some reason. After a few minutes Rock Star comes up to me and asks if I need help with anything. This conversations ensues.

    Rock Star:Can I help you with anything?
    Me: Yeah, I'm looking for some cabs for my pa. Do you have any 4 ohm cabs here? (I couldn't read the back panel the way they were all stacked.)
    RS: No, man, they don't make 4 ohm pa cabs. Maybe if you played guitar or bass, most guitar and bass cabs are 4 ohm, but they don't make PA cabs in under 8 ohms.
    Me: Are you sure about that?
    RS: Yeah, What kind of pa is it?
    Me: Well, it's a Crate pa head, 300 watts at 2 ohms. I was hoping to run 2 4 ohm cabs.
    RS: No, you don't want to do that, you want to run 2 8 ohm cabs. It'll be 150 watts with 2 8 ohms cabs, that's loud enough. Besides, they don't make Pa cabs in less than 8 ohms.

    At this point, I wasn't even going to ask what they were tuned for. I could see he didn't know his stuff, and was BSsing to try and get a sale. I thanked him for his time, and headed for guitar center. On the way, I told my guitarist about what Rock Star had said. Apparently, he had a similar encounter. Eddie was looking at some cheap no-name guitar from Japan. They had a conversation something like this.

    RS:That's a great guitar, great company.(it was something like indiano)
    Eddie:Really? I've never heard of them. Are they new?
    RS: Whoa, someone hasn't been getting his guitar magazines. Of course they're new, Japan has only been making guitars for 5 or so years. Every company making guitars in Japan is new.

    This was when I had seen Eddie laughing in the store, for obvious reasons.

    So at Guitar Center, I go look at Pa gear. One of the employees from that dept. askes me if he can help me with anything, and I ask him the same question. 4 ohm pa cabs. he asks what price range I'm looking at, and I say used if they have it, if not then under $600. He took me right to what I wanted. 2 4 Ohm cabs that handle 350 watts. Perfect. He asnswered all of my questions great, and I got them. The fun part was riding home with 2 other people, and 2 2x15 cabs in my car.
  2. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Great story. BTW, guitar store rock stars are great for a laugh or two.
  3. DDXdesign

    DDXdesign formerly 'jammadave' Supporting Member

    Oct 15, 2003
    Wash DC metro area
    But, dammit, WHY don't any of us take the TIME and ENERGY to EXPLAIN to the rock star that he's incompetent, and help make him better?!?!? You should have taken the PA cabs back there and said "look, see, feel, smell, they exist!" - Similarly your guitarist should have said "Yo, little place called Ibanez, been around 30 years or more in Japan?"

    They way you guys just kinda gave up, made him think he was smarter than you about this stuff. Dangerous.

    I dunno. If guys like that don't get schooled, they're going to continue the spread of misinformation. For example, I simply have to send everybody to snopes or about.com when they forward me a stupid chain letter, email hoax, etc. It's for the good of everybody.

    Ya know?

    Still, back on topic, a very nice GC story, one of very few. =0)
  4. kaboom133


    Oct 19, 2001
    Latrobe PA
    It was more trouble than it was worth to explain it to him at the time, we all had to use the restroom pretty bad, so we were in a hurry.
    We actually thought about going back for a couple of reasons but ended up not. We thought it would be funny to take one of the cabs to show him, but it really wasn't worth the effort. Once we got crammed in my car, we weren't going to get out for anything (well, except Wendy's :D ) until we got home. The guys at GC actually wanted to come out and get a picture of my car loaded up with the speakers and people, my poor brother in the back seat had maybe a foot and a half between the cab and the door. It was a funny sight. But the used music store does have some moniters that I want another look at, so I do plan on going back. I think I'll work it into the conversation somehow about 4 ohm PA speakers, and then I'll set him straight. These 40 year old "Rock Stars" don't like to listen to 18 year olds though, IME.
  5. jambassist


    Sep 1, 2002
    Easton, PA
    my partner and i have done quite a bit of business at the GC in springfield, nj. always got treated fairly both with purchases and trades. i agree with others that you have to be careful cause some of their instruments do get "beat up" a bit. never had a problem with amps/speakers etc. we'll definetly be going back to them. guess it's like anything else, caveat emptor. if you do that, you should have no problems.
  6. guitar store rock stars are great...i've been to jim laabs music (i only mention this because you might have heard of them, i always see a small JLM ad in BP magazine advertising DBs) and this was about 3 years ago, when i played my first 6 string bass ( it was one of those old danos that were SC and pretty cool) this was also the time when i started getting obsessed about the fender bass VI (i still am!) but i was playing it at the store, and an employee walks up to me and tells me its a guitar, not a bass...so i show him the sticker that says bass, and so he tells me that most bass players don't need more than 4 strings, because when he was young (this guy looked about 55-60) every bass player only needed 4 strings.
    plus, those guys have never heard of a fender bass VI!
    i haven't gone back very often!
  7. What is the world coming to? A knowledgable GC employee? Not really, the guy had the cabs in stock. Much as the stuff on the radio is touted as "real rockers" or good music to this generation of people- the "good service" of Guitar Center is becoming "acceptable" or the level of proficiency to shoot for.

    As far as:
    Sounds like you got a dud. They come in all ages. So do "Rock Stars." I've found that when I turned 21 I didn't know a quarter of what I thought I knew. At 35 I learn something new or find out something I "knew" is untrue every day. I've also learned that you can learn something from everybody regardless of age/background/sex/misshapen head, etc... Age generally comes with experience, and I'd prefer someone with experience over someone without.
  8. willgroove2


    Aug 16, 2003
    chicago IL
    Endorsing Artist;Essential sound products,Dunlop, Ergo Instruments
    i had a odd thing happen to me at GC on the south side of chicago this week,i popped in to grab a couple of set's of string's and wandered over to the bass dept,as a rule i don't like hanging out to much at music store's but i spotted several high end bass's hanging on the wall, alembic,ken smith,moon,stambaugh,and a lowend five string!!! among others.a helpful salesmen comes over and say's can i help you,well i have been GASing for a lowend five and this was my chance to try one out.as we got a amp for me to play out of i asked him what's with all the high-end bass's because i know of a online retailer who is based in the chicago area who rep's many of the smaller luthiers who made most of those bass's and he said someone with a large collection of bass's sold them to GC a few week's ago(i know who it is but i won't say who)so i start playing and go thru maybe 4-5 bass's and stop the guy ask's me "why did you stop you sound great" and i said because these bass's are so poorly set up you can't even tell how good they sound or feel and at these prices($2000-4000)it shouldn't be like this,and he say's to me"nobody know's how to set them up here,we just put them out and hope someone buy's it off the name alone when a pro like you comes in that the only time someone notices anyway"then he said he'd knock of 25-30% off anything i wanted.WHAT THE?
  9. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    Don't worry, that knowledgable GC employee won't be there next time you go in. Statisticly, the average GC employee lasts 3 months.

  10. Why do they have to replace the good ones with the dumb ones.

    That's what kills me.
  11. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!
    That's easy, the good ones get fed up & find something better to do.
  12. kaboom133


    Oct 19, 2001
    Latrobe PA
    Well, I'm going back up to both the used music store, and GC right after Christmas... I doubt the guy at the used store remembers me, so I think I might have some fun this time. I'm gathering some questions to ask him, both technical, and dealing with manufacturers. We'll see how he fares. Also, I plan on buying a few things, and if I do at GC, I'll hunt down the guy that helped me and give him the sale (If he still works there that is.)
  13. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    MY favorite GC employees are the spiked hair bleach blond 21 year olds who have to pick up a bass and show how wicked their slap is before they hand it to you. I always chuckle.
  14. Well, you'll blow holes all through your smugness if you mispronounce Rickenbacker or Ibanez.

  15. Isn't it funny when they just have to show you how good their slap technique is before they hand a bass over?

  16. Joey3313


    Nov 28, 2003
    I've only been to one guitar center...and while they had everything I wanted, I was still somewhat dissapointed...I dunno.

    And I also found it creepy that both the guys in the drum department kept hitting on my sister.
  17. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    I remember this crap in mars music. They must train their salesman with all the same licks for each instrument.
  18. Only


    Sep 8, 2002
    Warrensburg, MO
    I actually asked a kid in Musician's friend about the slap thing and he told me it was store policy. He said it's store policy, when handing out an expensive instrument, to test the instrument and amp before the customer gets a hold of them so they know that if there's a problem whether it was or was not the customer at fault.

    He said slap is the preferred bass technique because it's the easiest way to get clipping, and show damage.
  19. Dan Molina

    Dan Molina TalkBass Secular Progressive

    Jul 17, 2002
    Murr Town, California
    Japan only making guitars in the last 5 years.


    My 80's Aria must not exist then.
  20. kaboom133


    Oct 19, 2001
    Latrobe PA
    Hey, I'll be the first one to admit my own ignorance... but also the first one to do whatever it takes to get rid of it! :)

    I always get weird looks from them when they do hand me the bass. The first thing I do when I try out a bass is to see how bad I can make it sound. That ends up being pretty bad sometimes. I do this to find a bass that can make my bad sound almost good :)