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"Made in _____" ???

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Trayster2, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. Trayster2


    Aug 13, 2012
    I had a sales person tell me that my Squire was "made in Indonesia and that was a good thing." I notice there is a significant price difference between basses from other countries and basses made in U.S.A. Just wondered if anyone can shed some light on this or repost a thread that already covered this.
  2. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    This has been covered more times than you can count. The USA is a high wage country, and anything made here tends to cost more money. Indonesian Squires are great basses, IMHO. A lot of Chinese Squires are fine too.
  3. Geroi Asfalta

    Geroi Asfalta

    Aug 23, 2011
    It doesn't matter where it was made, most squiers are excellent for the price. I have two Indo made Ps and 2 Chinese made Js. In some settings they sound close to my MIA P/J
  4. xUptheIronsx

    xUptheIronsx Conform or Be Cast Out....

    Feb 6, 2010
    C-ville, Col, Ohio
    it's funny. I played bass for 20 years before I got on TB, and until then, I never even cared about where the basses I played were made... as long as they felt and sounded good.
  5. willbassyeah


    Oct 9, 2011
    they are made in the same factory that produces lakland skyline, ibanez and sterling by musicman.They are good basses,
  6. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    It would be a gross generalization (i.e. LOTS of exceptions), but it seems to be widely held that going down the pecking order from US made, you would have Made in Japan, then Made in Mexico and at the same level Made in Indonesia, then below those Made in China (and Made in Korea).

    In other words, other than made in the US or Japan, Indonesia generally (again, a very broad generalization) seems to be consistently as good quality as you can get.
  7. bolophonic

    bolophonic SUSPENDED

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    Indonesian instrument makers need to feed their families.
  8. My personal take on a lot of this is Fanboy elitism.
    People are willing to pay more for a MIA instrument because they perceive a higher quality, not necessarily because it IS higher quality.
    Generally, when I'm shopping, I pick up basses that appeal to my eye and then try them out. Most of these tend to be Fenders, but a lot of them are Squier CV & VM. The ones that play best range by a LOT. The last time I was in & purchased a bass, I settled on a Mexican Fender Active Deluxe Jazz V. This is after playing an American Deluxe Jazz V and a Squier Vintage Modified Jazz V. The VM was my second pick. It didn't play as well as the MIM (which played better than the MIA), but at 3/10ths of the cost, there was no contest.
    Weight-wise, the Squier won, with the MIM being second.
    The MIA definitely won on looks, though. That bound neck with pearloid inlays is yummy. It's too bad you can't get a bound & blocked MIM 5 string neck (even aftermarket -_-)
    Besides, headstock decals can be removed.
  9. fisticuffs


    May 3, 2011
    Madison, WI
    In many cases the US made guitars ARE higher quality. Made from the best of their selection of woods, better pickups and other components and built more by hand than by machine. There's more to the price difference than the slave wages paid in Asia. The US made guitars are generally better. Doesn't mean you can't find a nice import but chances are they used all the primo materials and primo builders on the US made product.

    Another reason you may find some imports equal or better than a US made product is because at a store like GC they don't do a good job of maintenance on the instrument. The setups are generally awful on the more expensive instruments because they sit there longer. The cheap Squier probably just came out of the box and has at least an acceptable factory setup.
  10. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    Well in my experience I have yet to see a Squier on the same level as any Fender, even MIM. The biggest thing your paying for is equality, you have to pay American workers a fair wage, you can treat Asian workers a lot worse, research Cor-Tek. I wouldn't buy anything from cor-tek for the same reasons I won't buy an iPod, I believe in human rights.
  11. Pronin1986


    Apr 16, 2012
    In Russia, most of bassplayers prefer guitars from USA, Japan or Europe. All other basses are not very appreciated.

    But this is all ******** ))) No matter where bass was build, if sounds good for you. )
  12. klejst


    Oct 5, 2010
    Heh I agree too with this. I am not a gear snob myself and I am not trying to start a fight with anyone who will admit they are, however I love playing basses and gear that feels and sounds good. Sure cosmetics are nice but are not everything. My main bass is a Made in Korea P bass and the thing rocks! There are a lot of great basses out there regardless of where they are made.
  13. bumperbass


    Jun 19, 2012
    Wow. Another Fender Am, Mex, Asia thread. Oh boy!
  14. boynamedsuse

    boynamedsuse Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2010
    Most of the Chinese and Indonesian stuff is made by the same two (huge) companies that used to manufacture in Korea: Samick and Cor-Tek.
  15. Which is something that always kind of confounded me.

    After 60 years of making electric instruments in the United States and with all the talk of using sustainable wood (but very few companies actually doing anything about it) wouldn't it make sense to look at a foreign market as being an area that hasn't had that sort of experience? Wouldn't it make sense that these developing countries have access to the kind of wood resources that we went and likely cut down a hundred years ago to make furniture out of?
  16. guymanndude1


    Feb 5, 2004
    I tend to buy American, although I have some foreign instruments to, because I like to support the American worker first. I like to my part to say to my brothers and sisters out there, "I've got your back".
    No hatred for anyone else's culture, just trying to do what I can to help at home first.
  17. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    And your point is?

    Are Ford cars made in a new plant today the same quality as ones made in one of their old plants, in a different place, with different workers, during the 80s?
  18. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Forget the international bickering. Just play basses in your price range. Lots of them. The main thing you want to look for is fit an finish. If things don't fit together well you will have problems. Then pay attention to how it FEELS when you play it. If it is put together well, and feels good when you play it, the electronics can be swapped out for cheap and you will still pay less than a high end bass. And that's only if you don't like the tone. If you are fine with the tone, leave it alone.

    That being said, having worked in a shop for a decade and played literally hundreds and hundreds of basses, the one that fit for me was a MIA Fender. But I have played plenty of foreign basses that felt great and were built well.
  19. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    There's more to the quality of a bass guitar than how it sounds or feels to you. Do the tuning machines hold a tune (for a LONG time)? Is the neck rock solid stable? Is the truss rod beefy enough to take some accidental abuse? Can you set the action super low (denoting an exceptionally good quality neck, fretboard, and fretwork)? Are the components (mechanical and electronic) robust enough to handle years of bar gig abuse?

    A lot of these things contribute significantly to what differentiates a more expensive bass from a less expensive one.
  20. powmetalbassist

    powmetalbassist Supporting Member

    I played Korean/Chinese made basses for years (Yamaha, Ibanez, etc) Never had an issue. Only in the last 2 years have I been playing late 80's Ibanez basses. I play them not because they are made in japan, but because I decided I wanted a light bass for a good price(Ibanez was the way to go). I just didn't like that all the newer basses by Ibanez were Active (I hate relying on a battery for power - only with wireless will I do this and replace the battery every 6-8 practices/shows). I wanted the Passive sound that I'd fallen in love with the original Yamahas I'd played in the 90's. I had to go classic, didn't care if it was made in China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam or Timbuktu.

    In my opinion.....always look with your ears and heart first (If it feels good...do it)....then if it really matters to you take a look at the area of production. Its really up to you.