This guitar costs $15,000

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Keith
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Keith » Wed Nov 28, 2018 11:21 pm

Jim Redgate has earned his accolades and his name is, most likely, actually Jim Redgate so the use of the phrase "so-called" may not be applicable. I wonder what "some Australian" means? Cheers to the mentioning of the cost to the luthier and the need to make a living--paying rent, eating, paying for health insurance, etc. . Likewise, if the guitar is sold by a second party then that person has to pay rent and put food on the table, etc. $15K for a car? Some spend less on a used car and many pay more. As many have said--the value is in the eyes of the beholder. I have no issues using my arm to roll up the window in my used Hyundai Accent whereas a co-worker has a $30K Honda complete with power windows. $22K to have motor lower and raise the window? I wonder if it is worth it?
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chiral3
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by chiral3 » Wed Nov 28, 2018 11:50 pm

Machete wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:42 am
I refuse to believe this guitar is 15k worth of materials
And herein lies the primary error the your logic (although you are correct that the materials cost far, far, far less)
"Life is under no obligation to give us what we expect" - Margaret Mitchell

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rojarosguitar
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by rojarosguitar » Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:13 am

chiral3 wrote:
Wed Nov 28, 2018 11:50 pm
Machete wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:42 am
I refuse to believe this guitar is 15k worth of materials
And herein lies the primary error the your logic (although you are correct that the materials cost far, far, far less)
My luthier friends have sets of wood that would set you back with some k$, plus a set of Rodgers tuners for 1.2k$ and you have easily at least one third of that price in materials; far more than usually calculated, if you maintain a workshop and live from your work.

Even if a material is expensive, it's only so because people believe in it's value; take gold or diamonds. There is nothing inherently valuable or expensive in gold or diamonds. If we proceed much longer with oil as wee do now, i.e. burn it for locomotion or heating, times may come when a barrel oil will be more expensive than a Jim Redgate guitar - and badly needed to synthesize all the organic compounds for medicince etc...
Just to illustrate how interdependent our ideas about value are.
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Mr.Rain
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Mr.Rain » Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:49 am

The cost of some woods is the product of speculation (BRW mainly),they are considered as another commodity, have seen people pay a monstruos amount to upgrade from India to BRW (same guitar/luthier)...

I would not pay 2k for a wood set(specially having as many alternatives as we have today to BRW).
You can still get order made guitars in BRW(not talking about black sets made out of stumps,but normal BRW sets) under 3k (made by a reputable luthier),again everything is a matter of perception, and how available sets are locally (specially in places where classical guitars were an oddity till the 1970s,as the BRW sets around are mainly inherited from former generations...)
Last edited by Mr.Rain on Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:34 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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rojarosguitar
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by rojarosguitar » Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:19 pm

I wasn't implying that the wood set used is that important; I just described the market - just as a clarification from my side.
Music is a big continent with different landscapes and corners. Some of them I do visit frequently, some from time to time and some I know from hearsay only ...

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Les Backshall
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Les Backshall » Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:58 pm

Mr.Rain wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:49 am
...You can still get order made guitars in BRW(not talking about black sets made out of stumps,but normal BRW sets) under 3k (made by a reputable luthier),again everything is a matter of perception, and how available sets are locally (specially in places where classical guitars were an oddity till the 1970s,as the BRW sets around are mainly inherited from former generations...)
I would recommend caution to anyone thinking of buying a guitar made with Brazilian Rosewood.
Brazilian Rosewood is CITES Appendix 1 - and international trade is banned. Within the EU, unless you have CITES certification - extremely unlikely for old stock - it is illegal to buy or sell instruments containing Brazilian Rosewood that were built after 1947.
This may seem like just a technicality, but the penalties are severe - up to five years in prison and/or a fine - and enforcement is likely to get more rigorous over time. The situation is different for Indian Rosewood, where the regulations look like being relaxed somewhat.

Les
Lester Backshall, Guitar Maker - Aylesbury UK

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Frousse
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Frousse » Thu Nov 29, 2018 3:18 pm

Steve Ganz wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 3:30 am
Machete,
I think I should help you. I read your introduction and first few posts and see that you are new to the forum, and to playing classical, and your guitars are sort of beginner guitars.
There is no shame in any of that. And your initial disbelief that guitars could cost so much is understandable from youir perspective. I think that there have been a few excellent responses to your initial post. I also think that when you say something is not worth X, it should be clarified, that it is not worth X to you. That way no person or their work is being put down.
Excellently phrased.

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Beowulf
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Beowulf » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:10 pm

Consider the value of Hauser guitars after Segovia concertized on one for 25 years. If I were purchasing a concert grand piano, I would take into account and respect the views of accomplished concert pianists as to the "value" of particular instruments. In this case, an excellent artist has endorsed a particular luthier's guitar and that endorsement was neither purchased nor coerced...it came from direct experience and years of comparison. Quality in a classical guitar is the result of superior craftsmanship, years of experimentation and experience, excellent materials and most importantly, the sound character and ease of playing which allow an artist to express, "the heart's desire" through the music. Ana Vidovic tried a Redgate guitar a couple hours before a concert and decided then and there to use it onstage immediately. It had everything she wanted and as she has noted, "When I got it and began to play, I immediately knew that this was the instrument that I want to be playing for a long time. The most amazing thing was the sound that had so much power and beauty and that it was so easy to play. I felt like I could just make music and not worry about the projection." $15K is not a great amount to pay for that privilege and joy. This lattice braced instrument is not incredibly dear...try a Smallman at $30K...
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Mr.Rain
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Mr.Rain » Thu Nov 29, 2018 11:26 pm

Les Backshall wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 2:58 pm
Mr.Rain wrote:
Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:49 am
...You can still get order made guitars in BRW(not talking about black sets made out of stumps,but normal BRW sets) under 3k (made by a reputable luthier),again everything is a matter of perception, and how available sets are locally (specially in places where classical guitars were an oddity till the 1970s,as the BRW sets around are mainly inherited from former generations...)
I would recommend caution to anyone thinking of buying a guitar made with Brazilian Rosewood.
Brazilian Rosewood is CITES Appendix 1 - and international trade is banned. Within the EU, unless you have CITES certification - extremely unlikely for old stock - it is illegal to buy or sell instruments containing Brazilian Rosewood that were built after 1947.
This may seem like just a technicality, but the penalties are severe - up to five years in prison and/or a fine - and enforcement is likely to get more rigorous over time. The situation is different for Indian Rosewood, where the regulations look like being relaxed somewhat.

Les

All the luthiers I ever dealt with, provided the CITES documentation(proper luthiers do that) other fellas sell BRW instruments saying they are made of Caviuna and try to avoid the CITES regulations....

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Arash Ahmadi
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Arash Ahmadi » Mon Dec 17, 2018 10:31 am

A Gernot Wagner or a Smallman guitar is much much more expensive than a Redgate...

I agree that when a famous guitarist starts to perform/record with a guitar, the luthier increases the price as much as he wants. But there are exceptions to that, as far as I know the price range for Conde and Lester Devoe whom both made guitars for Paco de Lucia, is less than say a Redgate.
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Mikkel
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Mikkel » Mon Dec 17, 2018 10:21 pm

We should just be grateful that some luthiers can make such good quality guitars that they can fetch a prce like that. Assuming a 5K material cost (with tuners etc), a probable dealer cut (unless it's 15K straight from Redgate which is not impossible though unlikely) and assuming he spent 100-150 hours working on the guitar he's likely to make some 50-60 dollars an hour before tax, a completely reasonable price if you wanted top quality plumbing done on your sink. Makes you wonder how luthiers whose guitars sell for way lss can afford to make a living... unless I seriously overestimate how long it takes to build a guitar for a top builder. I remember reading that Friederich spent around 200-250 hours on each guitar after he mastered his craft.. and his asking price was around 10-15.000 euros when he was at the height of his carrer with a 30 year waiting list. Ofc his guitars go for twice that nowadays at dealers.. still nothing compared to other string inztrumenets

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jaan
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by jaan » Tue Dec 18, 2018 7:07 pm

Machete wrote:
Tue Nov 27, 2018 1:15 am

Apparently this so called "jim redgate" is considered one of the best luthiers in the world?
His name is in fact Jim Redgate. No "so called" about it. And yes, one might say that he makes pretty good guitars.

Entertaining thread. Thanks all.
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celestemcc
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by celestemcc » Tue Dec 18, 2018 8:51 pm

The guitar sounds really good, but does it sounds $15,000 better than a $2000-3000 guitar? Obviously not. It's hand made but so are many other guitars below the $5000 range.
As others have said, yeah, it can sound better. A lot better. But it takes a certain perspective, and time, to get it. It's not only a guitar's sound, but its' responsiveness as well, and that's a quality that finer (ie, typically more expensive) guitars tend to have. Sometimes you can't hear the differences on a recording, but you can, hearing a live performance. And you can't tell how responsive a guitar is until you play it, and also become attuned to what a really responsive instrument sounds like, when played by someone else.

It takes time to develop that ear. A few years back I invited my non-musical, but open-minded, cousins to a concert given by my teacher, in which he uses three guitars from 150 to 60 years old, all originals; and he performs music that would have been played at the time each instrument was made. The differences were amazing and beautiful. But my cousins could barely hear any difference at all. They weren't even used to hearing classical guitar music, and had a lot to take in to listen to. They just weren't there yet, so to speak.

In the long run, you like what you like, and you're not compelled to like a very expensive instrument and a few are indeed overpriced. But often as not, with a good luthier, you do get what you pay for.
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Tonit
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Tonit » Wed Dec 19, 2018 12:20 am

Hello,
As I have seen for many years, the principle behind the pricing/performance is also there behind the automotive industry that you compare the price with.
Have you ever checked out "The Fastest Roadgoing Cars on Nürburgring Nord" ranking? This is very much close to the situation with musical instruments.

There are three cars listed in particular:

__Lap_____MSRP_____Car
06:45.0__$517,770___Lamborghini Aventador LP770-4 SVJ
07:08.7__$149,990___Nissan GT-R NISMO (2015)
08:06.3___$36,605___Ford Focus RS (Mk III, 2016)

As you see, Focus laps in about 8 minutes for somewhat affordable 36k price tag.
If you want to go 1 minute faster, you have to bump up to 150k, so you pay 114k extra for 1 minute faster lap time, and the price per second carved off costs you 2,000.
However, you can go only 23 seconds faster when you pay extra 370k, and the price per second carved off costs you whopping 16,000, or 8 times as much.

Of course, there is a lone sample of Radical SR8. However, with the Radical you cannot go beat the 7min lap time on the way back from a golf course, because you have no luggage compartment on a Radical, whereas a GT-R can do that rain or shine, with a good size compartment and without a 4 point seat belt or helmet.

The price tags on the guitars work more or less the same, and the closer you get to the world's most expensive guitar, the less you get for the additional money you pay.

Having said that, we all have to strike a deal at some point, where some consider the additional money being well worth, the others say it doesn't change so much.

Also there is another consideration: Aventador being the first on the list may as well be considered as reasonable, but if you could ever beat the Lambo with a modified VW Golf, that will be all the more impressive, even if the Lambo may be driven by an amateur driver.

I am recently focusing on that kind of a guitar: My kind of guitar is not a top-notch, but could possibly outperform the top-notches. As I have focused on it for a while, eventually I found roughly around 2000 buck budget could buy such a guitar.

This consideration is solely personal, but you could also explore in this direction to arrive at your own reasonable price range.

I hope this explains to you how the guitar price tags work.

Cheers,

Guero
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Re: This guitar costs $15,000

Post by Guero » Wed Dec 19, 2018 10:00 am

Would that be the opposite of an exponential function?
Is it a log function?

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