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Guitar Center Opinion?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by bordinco90, Jan 18, 2012.

  1. bordinco90

    bordinco90 Supporting Member

    Dec 7, 2011
    SW Louisiana
    Ok everyone I was just wondering what everyone's opinion is of guitarcenter? Personally I have been to 3 different guitar centers (Beaumont texas, Tuscon arizona, and Scottsdale arizona) and my experience was not so pleasant. At all 3 guitar centers the selection for basses were not so good, also the people were very rude. Just wondering what everyone else thought of Guitar center?
  2. dedpool1052


    Jan 10, 2011
    Seattle, WA
    some are good, some are bad. just like the instruments they sell.
  3. BioDriver

    BioDriver A Cinderella story

    Aug 29, 2008
    Austin, TX
    The only good GCs I've been to have been the ones in west Houston and Oklahoma City. I'm in The Woodlands right now and the north Houston one is pretty bad (I have a thread about my last experience there if you want something to read ;))
  4. dllcalli


    Nov 13, 2011
    I've been to several around the country and the best I have been to is Fresno,ca
  5. My two local Guitar Centers are a mixed bag - The one in Rancho Cucamonga (An upscale, affluent area) is staffed by ponytail types who tolerate the presence of basses and bassists in their store, while the San Bernardino location (A "Cops" ghetto location) are quite a bit more friendly and the used selection and prices tend to be much better.

    Neither is terrible, definitively not deserving the bad rap that GC gets, I would definitively go to either than visit the local Sam Ash in Ontario, where everything is out of reach and the recording studio area staff are the snobbiest I have ever seen.
  6. nurnay


    Aug 21, 2010
    Chico, CA
    I went to the one in Scottsdale, the people seemed nice enough, but all the basses I wanted to play were behind the counter and I didn't feel like asking for different basses over and over and over... so I just grabbed a couple of Fenders for fun and tried them then left. Not sure why a $1000 Fender is on the wall, yet a $1200 Stingray is behind the counter.
  7. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    I'm not a fan, but I don't shop at target or Walmart much either.
  8. The San Berdoo store can't hold a candle to the Murrietta GC, and I've been to both.

    Randy - the manager of the Murrietta store runs a pretty good ship and there's a good selection of basses, new and used.

    But what I don't understand is when people rag on GC for not having as many basses as they want to see. It's like going to buy ice cream and they don't have the flavor you want - so what?

    Honestly GC cannot be faulted for not having every permutation of every bass YOU want - the floorspace won't support it and the costs are egregious.

    I wouldn't be surprised to see that GC has some algorithm that tells them which basses, strings or wooden rhythm sticks sell in their particular stores local niches too.

    I have seen over and over where people (who proudly post their acumen here on TB) go to GC to try a bass and complain about it and then either buy the same bass at a mom-n-pop or order it online.

    What do you expect if the basses never sell from the store? They stop keeping them on the floor and the bass area gets smaller and smaller.
  9. ih8law


    Aug 8, 2009
    Houston, TX
    I've got some great deals on basses at the Guitar Centers in Houston over the years. The West Houston GC is the best in the area by far. Better selection and sales people that will treat you with some dignity and willingness to answer questions. The North Houston GC gets some good stuff in from time to time, but their sales people seem more prone to automatically treating you like a moron (I once got ridiculed by a salesman there for not believing that nylon tape wound strings were no different that flat wound strings).

    Look, it's a "big box" store that is in business to sell a lot of product in high volume. I don't expect a lot of hand-holding when I shop there, but I would like a modicum of respect. Some GC stores give you that...others don't. Try one out, find a salesman you like and just stick with him or her.
  10. Pep

    Pep Supporting Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    Louisville, KY
    The ones in Indianapolis and Louisville are great but I'd like to clarify one thing. I'm the guy who patronizes the small local store because the following:
    (1) They're easier to deal with if you have a problem.
    (2) Their customer service is always excellent.
    (3) If you're a regular customer and need a favor, you'll usually get it.
    (4) If they don't have it, they can usually get it quickly for the same price.

    So basically I go to GC to try it out and if I want it, I purchase it from a small family-owned store.
  11. I think the 12 months same as cash really propelled GC in the market place.

    I've only bought 1 bass from them (actually a trade-they accepted my offer and really got the better deal to resale the 2 guitars I traded, but for what I had in money in them, I am happy with the trade)

    Back when I was more into guitar (switched to bass in '06), I got some great deals on green tagged/clearance custom shop electrics from Fender/Gibson/Gretsch.

    Being in "Guitar Town" I guess my GC has to try a little harder. A lot of the older guys have been there since day 1 and know me on sight, so I usually have good experiences when I visit.
  12. Staccato

    Staccato Low End Advocate

    Aug 14, 2009

    Mass merchandising with a policy of...take one down and try it. This translates (at least somewhat) to dinged headstocks, out of tune basses, and dead strings. How well are the instruments setup? It greatly by store from what I've observed.

    Find one you like at GC? One common recommendation on music forums is-tell the store you'll buy it-if they have a fresh one in the box.

    If that's your plan, don't express your preference in a subdued way, tell them with authority that you will buy it, if they have one NIB! The problem with that is that the boxed item could be less desirable (in quality) than the demo version on the wall, and it may be in a different finish/color.

    The noise level from some players that go to GC for an hours-worth of entertainment with no intention to buy, is that you may not be able to hear yourself think, or play! Asking the employees for a break in my local store will get a response, but some GC locations & employees will not help you silence the Rock God playing way loud, so you can hear your own demo.

    Layaways are okay on most instruments/gear but don't expect a 60-90 day term.

    Have fun, and don't expect the experience to be-like most small guitar stores. YMMV.
  13. Tupac


    May 5, 2011
    I love Guitar Center. They're literally the only music store that lets you try things past popular Fender models in my area. The staff is fine, not sure why that's even an issue really. You're just buying things. As for the bad setups, don't look a gift horse in the mouth. You don't buy the floor models anyway.
  14. There is a reason they don't call it Guitar and Bass Center. Employees are hit and miss, with some being great and some being D-Bags.

    I go to Guitar Center all the time when selling gear on Craigslist when people need it test it out. I'll buy a strap or cables or something, but never any big ticket items. Online for me.
  15. mixx80


    Nov 2, 2009
    Endorsing Artist:Lakland Basses
    They have pushed me to shop on-line !
  16. The G/C in Columbus is great! Everybody is friendly & knowledgeable.

    Cody - the Assistant Manager has taken very good care of me & my wife when we need anything.

    Chris & Mike - in Pro Audio are always very helpful.

    It probably helps that I seem to have met almost everyone that works there and we (my wife & I) are recognized as soon as we walk in. I know she can go by herself and is well taken care of. (They ask her where I am :) )

    Sam Ash is 2 blocks away but we always get better deals at G/C !

    As far as basses & equipmet G/C as a better selection than Sam Ash.
    (I did get to meet Victor Wooten :bassist: at Sam Ash {he signed my LH1000 amp :D})
  17. Arranger


    Mar 9, 2003
    I think that the only thing that matters is the quality of the instrument you're sizing up. 10 years later I won't be saying, "I really like this bass because I got it at Guitar Center."

    I honestly don't give the sales agents there any consideration. I've found that some are more courteous than others, but again it really doesn't matter. If they have the right bass, that means everything.
  18. Flyingfrets


    Dec 25, 2011
    I knew the GM at my local GC and he's the only one I'd deal with...info or sales. Always got good deals from the guy - free proper set-up, cases, bags, cables, etc on top of rock bottom pricing. But I didn't yank his chain either. If I told him I was serious about buying, he knew I wasn't blowing smoke up his ass.

    Yeah, we'd haggle till I got what I wanted (he must've too or he wouldn't have given in). But I was a regular customer for almost 10 years and I always went to him. If he wasn't in, I left & came back when he was.

    Sadly, haven't seen him since the end of '09. The store doesn't stock half the parts they used to, the staff is vaguely pleasant, decent selection of banged-up floor models (tried 2 different Epi LP Ultras - nanomag pickup didn't work on either), never have any NIB, so now I've become one of those guys who'll try something there & buy it elsewhere.
  19. poomwah


    Jan 26, 2008
    First Guitar Center I ever went to was in Canton, MI. At that time it was the only one within 4 hours from here. It was amazing, They had an obscene amount of basses, and even had a separate room for the amps, so you could play without being bothered by the noise of the rest of the store.
    They were really nice until I bought my stingray, then when it needed service, they were total douche nozzles.
    Then they opened one in Toledo, OH. Only an hour away now. This one has an obscenely small selection of basses, and the people that work there... well, its hit or miss. They've got a couple guys working there that are so great, they should be getting paid double. I mean, you couldn't ask for better service. But there are an equal amount of guys there that are jerks and can't be bothered dealing with lowly customers. Then they have a few idiots scattered in. Like the one tried to talk me out of buying a samson sm-58 mic telling me I should get something "more standard" that the sm58 was an obscure mic that noone uses in live situations. WHAT??? Or the other idiot ( who admitted that they didnt play and never did, didnt even own a guitar), who was pushing the generic guitar stands that they had on clearance, and was trying to tell me that Hercules stands are garbarge and that they will take the lacquer off my bass, but that the the 10 dollar stand wouldn't. Ummm, ok.
    Then there's the store in Fort Wayne, In. I've been there a lot, and dealt with them a lot. Very small bass selection. BUT, I have NEVER had a problem with anyone in there. They have all been helpful and polite.
    I think the best thing for guitar center is to try what you want in the store, then order it online. Guitarcenter.com has great customer service, and you get something straight from the wharehouse rather than something on the showroom floor thats had the crap beat out of it
  20. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Verily. :cool:

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