Impulse or planned? - Your gear purchasing


Plank Owner
Dec 1, 2012
Eureka, MO
My gear purchasing is usually well planned with the exception of the few items I have on my "if I ever see it for sale and can swing the cost it's mine" list.

Do you find most of your gear related purchases to be impulse or planned?
Do you find most of your gear related purchases to be impulse or planned?


I will hunt stuff....when I decided on the P22 it took me a month to find the right one and the right deal. I tripped across my R9 on Craigslist and bought it a couple of days later.

I have an eye out for something with P90's

Pedals tend to be more "That sounds interesting... and I buy it"
Usually I shop for an item because I need it for a new project I'm working on. That's one category; sometimes that's known in advance, sometimes it comes up during the project. I'll call that a business opportunity buy. It happens fast, but it's part of doing business.

Sometimes a piece of gear in my studio needs to be replaced or upgraded. That's another category. Call it a maintenance buy. That's part of doing business, too.

Another category is long term needs, planned in advance, i.e., I get a piece of equipment or an instrument that I know I can use on lots of projects long-term to give myself more opportunities, and I plan for it..

Finally, there are impulse buys, and maybe in my case that would be if a killer deal comes up on something I've been needing long-term, or a very small item. I don't have a lot of these.
I usually have an item in mind and intend to get it some day. When that day comes, I never know. Call it a planned impulse buy, if you will. Unless its something I need, of course.
And bit of both. I usually plan what I would like to get next, but sometimes I try something while I'm waiting for it and find it irresistible: like a 12 fret, a Fishman PA, a crazy quilt, a floretine cut away with some sweet cocobolo...
Almost all my gear was purchased on impulse. When I plan and research I find logical reasons not to buy.
I usually plan all of my purchases out first. I am currently planning/saving to buy my first PS. I still have a little ways to go!! :biggrin:
I found that planning helps me find out exactly what I want. I did a spreadsheet and put all of the models I was interested in. I added columns like wood type, pickups, neck carve's, bridge type.My last purchase was the P24. I ordered it and got exactly what I wanted after almost a year. I am doing the same planning process with amps now.
Perfect example of "impulse buying"......the recent cache of discovered Brazilian Necks for Private Stocks. That wasn't planned at all. But it led to a totally impulsive purchase. Similar to the impulse purchase of one of the "Brazilian 408's" scheduled for release in a couple months. Resulting in "impulse sales" of existing guitars in my collection. :flute:

The only "planned purchases" are those of vintage gear that represent "investment acquisitions".... if that makes any sense in today's economy.

Overall...if I really tried to "plan a purchase" by weighing the pros and cons....I would end up with a list of 75 pros, and 75 cons....and ultimately have to make an impulsive decision in order to get the balancing scale to tip in one direction or another. :p
I have my planned purchases, where I spend a lot of time thinking about what I am going to get, which lately is well thought out PRS Private Stocks. My Jade Glow DC Ted was well thought out, and the Subsequent SC Ted (inbound soon) and DC 245 Sig (also incoming), and the Brazzy DC (was going to do a RW DC anyway, when I found out Brent was doing the BRW ones) and Brazzy Boarded SC, the two I put in the oven recently.

I have been known to slip and make some impulse buys (an understatement historically!), I try not to but my will power and track record has not been good in that regard, slipped and bought three impulse Private Stocks in the past year. (Darn you Brent!!) :D

Going forward, I am going to try to NOT do the impulse buy thing as much, which should be easier with this great collection of personally spec'ed Private Stocks I am putting together. One thing that helps me now is that my obsession with 245 scale PRS limits temptation for Production PRSi, and also my Private Stocks have spoiled me with things I love like Maple Binding and cool Birds that I get to pick the materials for.

One caveat - I do plan to get a PRS Bass as those start showing up at dealers, when I find one that floats my boat re finish and top, I am sure I will snap it up on the spot! ;)
That's some funny stuff right there!



I blame you for one of those impulse buys, Mike!!


I'm a sucker for Premier Guitar Mag equipment reviews..... I keep having to tell myself...."don't do it, she's going to kill me."