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Gibson Pricing

MSN001

New member
Joined
May 26, 2019
Messages
20
Just wondering if anyone from Gibson Custom marketing could post a breakdown of the costs in manufacturing a guitar or provide a link to an annual report. I’d like to learn more about the KPIs and the planned direction given the global recession upon us post COVID19. The production of guitars that retail at over £5k seems daft now, I fear consumer credit and low interest finance has reached a pinnacle and I’m concerned the retrace coming in this new time of hardship and unemployment for many will send Gibson back into administration ? I love this brand and hope that it can adapt with the change in the market. Unfortunately now I see it only going one way towards becoming more and more unattainable £££ for anyone aspiring to have Gibson on the headstock. The economy , despite the companies financial troubles, has had it good with the rise since the financial troubles of 2008, which has over the course of a decade allowed retail prices to climb up to ridiculous prices, I don't see how charging the same price as a car or a new bathroom suite for a new 59’ custom is sustainable. I’d love to hear others views. All the best and stay safe.
 
Last edited:

goldtop0

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
8,572
I agree with you.
The brand as such will become a thing of the past in future(for players outside of the US) as prices of the CustomShop range creep up at retail, and from what I've experienced recently in buying 2nd hand internationally those prices too are on the move compared to say 2 years ago.
Here in NZ we double the US or UK retail pricing to reach the prices asked on the same new LP, 335 or other Gibson guitar. As a result there is not a great selection of instruments to choose from........ but then again there never has been as the product has always been expensive here, like Marshall and Fender or any other imported music product.
 

au_rick

Active member
Joined
Mar 18, 2010
Messages
858
Just wondering if anyone from Gibson Custom marketing could post a breakdown of the costs in manufacturing a guitar or provide a link to an annual report. I’d like to learn more about the KPIs and the planned direction given the global recession upon us post COVID19. The production of guitars that retail at over £5k seems daft now, I fear consumer credit and low interest finance has reached a pinnacle and I’m concerned the retrace coming in this new time of hardship and unemployment for many will send Gibson back into administration ? I love this brand and hope that it can adapt with the change in the market. Unfortunately now I see it only going one way towards becoming more and more unattainable £££ for anyone aspiring to have Gibson on the headstock. The economy , despite the companies financial troubles, has had it good with the rise since the financial troubles of 2008, which has over the course of a decade allowed retail prices to climb up to ridiculous prices, I don't see how charging the same price as a car or a new bathroom suite for a new 59’ custom is sustainable. I’d love to hear others views. All the best and stay safe.

I would suggest that labour and clear profit make up a huge chunk of the "costs".
Moving production to China or Indonesia "could" reduce the sticker prices substantially without affecting quality (have a look on youtube for PRS factory tour and videos detailing the production costs in different countries). But would people still buy a Gibson Les Paul for $1200 ???
 

goldtop0

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 19, 2003
Messages
8,572
I would suggest that labour and clear profit make up a huge chunk of the "costs".
Moving production to China or Indonesia "could" reduce the sticker prices substantially without affecting quality (have a look on youtube for PRS factory tour and videos detailing the production costs in different countries). But would people still buy a Gibson Les Paul for $1200 ???


People would I think......Indonesian Production models or whatever other country they were made in......Customshop instruments however might be a different scenario in the short term, people like me who buy them would need to acclimitise to any change and compare them to the US made guitars.
 

EXPLRGAB

Active member
Joined
Jul 4, 2020
Messages
108
Prices for Gibsons and Fender Products were always pricy..commensurate to the state of the economy of the times..when my parents bought me my 1st electric.....they would not spring for the extra $ 100.00 bucks ..so i got a Goya guitar...The Fenders and particularly Gibsons were out of reach. I bought a LP CUSTOM in 1971...$592.00..back then it was an ungodly sum.......and that guitar was stolen....i was inconsolable. Of course i did notrealize that the CUSTOM the fretless wonder..was the wrong guitar...Knowing What to Buy...is the long pole in the tent..and that goes for many many things...i research with an uncommon zeal when I acquire anything..let me state that my Wildwood 2019 R8..is better than the LP Custom I purchased in Manhattan at Silver and Horlan..i believe that guitar was made in 1969....
 

AA00475Bassman

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2016
Messages
3,503
I think the Custom shop prices are over the top . Although requesting a price breakdown in a free market is ridiculous !
 

Torshalla

Active member
Joined
Sep 26, 2020
Messages
169
i think Gibson have seen how much money their guitars go for on the second hand market... they improved specs and quality and can charge these prices and still sell.
I guess if we go into a deep recession and luxury items collapse so will second hand value of gibson guitars... for a time. And then inflation will drive prices up again.
it is all cycles :)
 

Sgrady41

New member
Joined
Jul 28, 2022
Messages
25
There is a large cost in the marketing, labor with tenure, and some of their "Older processes". I agree the costs are getting out of range for many of their consumers. i bought a new one this year, and again thinking about the years of past, it is astounding. I am new to this forum but me and my family have been playing for over 45 years.
 

somebodyelseuk

Active member
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Messages
363
It is what it is. Take a look at Fender CS prices. They're basically 'flat pack' guitars. The 'ratio' of prices between a Strat and a Les Paul is pretty much the same as it's always been.
If you want vintage accuracy, the price is circa 6 grand. If you don't, it's about 2 and a half. If you want Asian, it's under a grand with an Epiphone logo in place of the Gibson logo.

I'd like an Aston Martin, but they're not going to drop the price, just so I can afford one.
 

Nifty

Member
Joined
Apr 28, 2021
Messages
35
I'm not a professional musician or all that great by guitar player standards. I can play though. I could go buy another LP today, but I'm not going to pay north of 3k for any guitar. I've watched the prices slowly increase over the last few years and it's nuts. Maybe it does cost that much to stay in business in the US. I don't think Gibson is dumb, they are trying to make money, keep good people employed, etc.

But I do wonder how much the PR and advertising side consumes. I would think the brand could stand on it's own without the need for a lot of marketing.

I try to buy "local" and buy American. The local music stores in our area no longer carry Gibson. That's because Gibson does business with Guitar Center, and we had this wonderful (sarc) GC store show up in town about 15 years ago. That really hurt the three local shops in the area. Two still are in business but not like it used to be. Guitar Center to me, is like Wal Mart. Incredibly annoying. I rarely go in one, mostly because there's always a few dudes trying to out shred each other, playing AT THE SAME TIME.
 
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