Has anyone ever purchased a Chinese-copy guitar?

Discussion in 'Beginners/FAQ' started by JBguitar2196, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. JBguitar2196

    JBguitar2196 SS.org Regular

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    I see a lot of people nowadays that purchase guitars from China for a cheap price, then mod them and improve the quality. A buddy of mine just bought a "Gibson" (Chibson :lol:) Les Paul copy for $375 off a website and threw on new Grover tuners and a '57 classic pickup. I played it the other day and honestly I was blown away at how good it sounded, I half expected it to break while I played. So have any of you had any experience with guitars like these? I see YouTubers like PixxxyLixx post about them often and they seem to be fans of the Chinese guitars. It seems a lot of people buy Steve Vai/Zakk Wylde fakes these days, unfortunately not always on purpose.

    I've been looking at this Jim Root copy. I would definitely throw on new tuners and a pair of Blackouts. I intended to buy the Squier and do the same, but this Chinese copy is half the price of the Squier and has pretty good reviews. Yes, I'm aware I wouldn't be able to trade/sell/giveaway this guitar if I purchased it.

    guitar combo Picture - More Detailed Picture about Guitar, Electric Guitar, Jim Root Signature TL Guitar, Locking Tunner, Mahogany Body, White Picture in Guitar from Guitar Music NO.1 | Aliexpress.com | Alibaba Group
     
  2. Hollowway

    Hollowway Extended Ranger

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    I've played a few. I'm sure you can find some decent ones, but when you add in the cost of the guitar, the shipping, the upgrade parts, and the time to do it all, it's really not worth the risk. These things have been around for a while, and these sort of questions PPP up every once in a while. But people continue to avoid these and pay more for sure-things. Just too many stories of crappy builds and poor fretwork, etc.
     
  3. Le Jeff

    Le Jeff SS.org Regular

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    Plenty of people, on YouTube.
     
  4. Alex Kenivel

    Alex Kenivel Stunt Guitar

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    Sure, if you want an inconsistent plywood guitar. There are so many different factories producing these that you can't guage the quality consistently from one guitar to another.

    Personally, I think it would be a slap in the face to Jim Root, or Vai, or whoever is getting cheated by these being made..
     
  5. jayeshrc

    jayeshrc SS.org Regular

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    Almost did, then decided to buy a custom and forgot about it
     
  6. FILTHnFEAR

    FILTHnFEAR Dread it, run from it....

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    Nope. Never will.

    For reasons already stated in this thread.
     
  7. Kashmir

    Kashmir SS.org Regular

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    I bought a chinese Les Paul Custom copy off craigslist for $80 just to see what all the fuss was about. My evaluation is that it played exactly like you'd expect an $80 chinese guitar to. I ended up using it to practice refretting and turned to into somewhat of a decent playing beginners guitar.
     
  8. s4tch

    s4tch SS.org Regular

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    Once I bought a cheap Chinese Tele, just because it matched the furniture in my living room. It turned out to be a surprisingly nice instrument, and had tons of vintage Tele twang, too. I only sold it because my girlfriend wanted me to thin the herd. Sometimes I miss the guitar, it was pure fun.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. JustinG60

    JustinG60 SS.org Regular

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    well, i have researched these in quite a bit of depth to make sure in the future i never end up with one thinking it was a real thing. i've found that plywood is not the case at all. they use more pieces of solid wood for the body than i would personally want 3-5 (for a Les Paul body) but it's def. not plywood.

    though i agree with you that there are huge inconsistencies in them from what i have found. China Guitar Sceptic | China Guitar Sceptic - Reviews and Advice on all things Guitar from China and Chinese has a list of vendors ranked by their quality and actually shipping the guitars haha

    i don't own one, doubt i ever will because i am not a gambler. i would rather know i am getting something for my $$ than paying these companies and hoping for the best i get something at all ...but there are some success stories out there on them

    ...some of these "high dollar" guitars are just not worth the money they ask, flat out, not worth it. Companies like Gibson and Fender literally just charge you for their name. how could any strat be worth $5k new? their woods rarely change, their tops are a joke, their finishes are nothing impressive and the ones that pull in the most money are the "relic" (beat up) ones. sorry to those die hard Fender people but damn... i am a huge Gibson guy myself so here's a shot at them. i was in Guitar Center yesterday. i was trying out a Freidman BE100 and i happened to look up at a 59 Les Paul, not an actual 59 but a 2014 59 Les Paul, and saw a clearance price of $5200. what was that guitar's price before clearance?! it doesn't matter because $5200 for a production guitar is too much damn money! (P.S. yes, the Les Paul Supreme in my icon is real and it is mine. bought it new, before the price hike. yes, to this day i still feel it was expensive but because it was unlike any other Les Paul i have owned i justified it that way. sound chambered bubble back)

    closing statement...

    free market is a bitch. if you didn't inflate your guitars price to an unobtainable price for most musicians then fakes wouldn't even be a topic of conversation.
     
  10. MemphisHawk

    MemphisHawk Japan's One And Only

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    fakes would always be a topic of conversation because someone will always be unable to afford the real deal. Hell, there are people that can't afford the fakes.
     
  11. Chokey Chicken

    Chokey Chicken mouth breather

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    There was a topic almost exactly like this, only for a black jim root strat I think. I'll say here what I said there, only in fewer words.

    Don't do it. Waste of time, waste of money, potential lost/broken guitar, garbage parts, shitty fretwork.

    Regardless of what the headstock says, you still wouldn't own a fender and you'd know it and still gas after the real thing. These things are more often than not garbage. I've seen one too many with unfixable action issues. (Even decked saddles were way too high.)
     
  12. slowro

    slowro Drunken Scot

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    I really don't see the point in fake guitars when there is a huge used market. I'm broke most of the time but it's no different to sticking an audi badge on a Hyundai. It's not a 'bad' car but it's not an audi
     
  13. _velkan

    _velkan SS.org Regular

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    Nope and never will. Its not a matter of its a bad guitar or not... Its a matter of principle and not wanting to feed the counterfeit world with my money.

    Cant afford the real deal? Work for it! And there is always second hand market.
     
  14. GBH14

    GBH14 SS.org Regular

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    I don't think I would buy one as its never going to be what it is trying to be, no matter if you change the pups or hardware. Thats not to say they probably wont be any good, just it wont be as good as the real deal.

    The only thing that makes it tempting for me (I only looked today after seeing this post) is getting different finish options like this:

    [​IMG]

    I have never seen an eclipse in this finish, is it a finish ESP uses? It looks incredible but i just know that it wont be as good as it looks so its not worth it :(

    Would love a real eclipse identical to that!
     
  15. JustinG60

    JustinG60 SS.org Regular

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    ...and with that example i would like to take your point and feed off it, particularly this part "it's no different to sticking an audi badge on a Hyundai. It's not a 'bad' car but it's not an audi."

    no, it definitely will not be an Audi. it will just look like it. you'll see it, you'll enjoy how it looks but when you take your copy for a ride and the real deal for a ride you're going to want the real thing. copies never live up to the original. with that said, if you absolutely want the real thing then there is no substitute. (in this case the Squire will in fact be of better quality)

    soo... all that being said an Audi is a glorified, over priced, Volkswagen. from the interior molds done with VW equipment to the same motors being used (literally), to the same VW parts being bolted to it, and the same problems as a VW. the same under engineering of parts (in this case super problematic coil packs, mass air flow sensors and oxygen sensors [i am also a VW guy and a long time member of vwvortex so i can run with your analogy]). so with that being said, i still feel the Audi is over priced. the Audi isn't worth the thousands upon thousands on the price tag over the Volkswagen!

    :short version: a fake won't be worth much more than a show piece or something to learn how to do fret work on...
     
  16. max3000

    max3000 SS.org Regular

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    So I once bought a fake Gibson Les Paul Supreme.

    I was very pleasantly surprised at the quality. Of course it needed to be setup and the frets leveled a bit but after that it played and sounded really nice.

    The finish has very minor imperfections on it that if you hadn't pointed them out would be kinda unnoticeable unless you're an expert.

    Ended up selling it (as a fake of course) but it was fairly impressive for what it was.

    Just know what you are taking a 50/50 gamble on it. I've heard horror stories.
     
  17. electriceye

    electriceye SS.org Regular

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    I couldn't give two sh*ts what the quality was. The bottom line, any money spent on these knock-offs is another nail in the coffin of US guitar makers. STOP FUNDING THESE CRIMINALS!
     
  18. JustinG60

    JustinG60 SS.org Regular

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    is it? or is it because Gibson raises their prices every year all the while, their build quality becomes more and more questionable.

    ...further, the act of copying them is actually not illegal in China. feel free to get more offended and watch Top Gear season 18 episode 2. decent summary of China's lack of copyright laws haha. obtaining them outside of China is what's illegal
     
  19. Rawkmann

    Rawkmann SS.org Regular

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    I've been thinking about getting one of these 'knockoff' guitars for a while now, perhaps just to finally settle the debate of whether they are worthwhile instruments or not. I know the quality can be hit or miss but frankly buying a guitar from an established company can be a huge gamble as well, especially Your Gibson and Fender variety. I've played cheap chinese guitars that played like top quality, and I've played $2000+ guitars that felt horrible with many defects. I do feel like there isn't enough variety from production guitars that it makes sense to me to purchase a knockoff. I don't know why but I just don't feel that bad about ordering a copy as long as its represented as such.

    PS: If anybody knows who makes that ESP Eclipse knockoff pictured above please let me know, I'd LOVE to have one just like that!
     
  20. GBH14

    GBH14 SS.org Regular

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    I've got the link for it at work, will pm you it on Monday when I go back. I am tempted with it as it looks so nice. Even if it's crap it could just be a wall hanger and nothing more!
     

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