The 'vintage value' factor

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by Hotblack Desiato, Nov 7, 2019.

  1. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    We'll never see mid-80's Custom 24s reaching the crazy heights of a '59 Les Paul in terms of value but do you think vintage (say, anything pre 1990) will command a premium over newer equivalent models?

    Will an old PRS ever have the same 'vibe' as an old Fender or Gibson?

    Share your thoughts!
     
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  2. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    I don't think so. I firmly believe it will always come down to the music/musicians of the period. When looking back on the era when those old guitars were used to create music, they were in the hands of now iconic players changing the sounds of rock.

    Go to the era when PRS was getting their start, it was a different guitar culture with a different type of player that was using a high performance, flashy guitar. PRS came to life after that trend started. When PRS did become part of a musical movement it was nu-metal.

    Will the pre-factory guitars get crazy with that crowd? Who knows. I don't think they will get vintage crazy with the general guitar buyer.
     
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  3. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    Yeah, I think you're maybe right. It might only be when a very high-profile musician records a massive hit with a PRS that the brand will perhaps start to seep into the wider consciousness. The general public have vaguely heard of Fender & Gibson so it might require Paul to force a guitar into the hands of someone like The Edge or the Taylor Swifts of this world to sow the seeds required for future 'classic' status.

    (Note: your definition of 'musician' may differ to those indicated above - I just plucked two names out of the air!)
     
    #3 Hotblack Desiato, Nov 7, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
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  4. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    I hear you. I don't think it'll matter these days. PRS has a nice roster and many of their Signature Artists sell enough records. Remember, the whole industry has changed. With home recording, YouTube, and the minimal NEED for lavel contracts to develop product, finding an artist that will just jump out and be a Clapton, Hendrix, EVH or Vai just isn't going to happen these days.
     
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  5. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    Of course I was forgetting about Santana! (D'oh, *smacks forehead*) Well known but probably not mainstream enough.
     
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  6. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    Just stumbled across this video which may go some way to answering my original question:



    I've always said I'd never sell my Navy Blue 1988 CE (2-digit serial number!) but if someone offered me that sort of money then I may have to change my mind.
     
    #6 Hotblack Desiato, Nov 7, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2019
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  7. sergiodeblanc

    sergiodeblanc Get in, loser, we’re going shopping.

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    When 48th President Fred Durst signs the Great North American War Peace Treaty in 2029, and throws a National Concert to celebrate the union of our new country... The survivors will be listening to Santana, Rush, and Ted Nugent playing our new National Anthem (which will just be a medley of Smooth, High Enough, Tom Sawyer, and Give Me Something to Break) on PRS guitars.

    The rise in patriotism will make all other guitar brands obsolete, and our new flag will simply be a 12th fret bird over a rainbow background.

    So yeah.... Old PRS guitars are gonna get super valuable.
     
  8. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    Sounds like a plan. Count me in.
     
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  9. markd21

    markd21 New Member

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    Oh, to add to the video posted....

    PRS is one of the only companies around (I put Ibanez in this category too) that continues to push forward with their instruments instead of mainly living in the past. PRSh will say that the new guitars are better than the old ones. Every time I pick up a "new" model I prefer over models from the past. They are always pushing forward, and because of that you rarely see the "reissue" like you see with Fender and Gibson. I believe the company's attitude about their own product will stunt the vintage value outside of a hardcore PRS fan.

    I always wanted a CU24 with a sweet switch. I got to play one. I MUCH prefer my 594 and current (2014 and newer) CU22s. I saved myself some money, and I never looked back.
     
  10. gush

    gush I'm not a new member!!!!

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    80s prs guitars are already worth more than they sold for new. I don't believe they will ever get to 59 LP values but its really hard to say.

    It will depend on what happens to prs as a company when the great PRS himself moves on to other things.
     
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  11. Mozzi

    Mozzi https://imgur.com/user/BAMozzy

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    A good video and talks about PRS too....
     
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  12. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    I also watched that video earlier. I guess the hobby guitarists among us forget that professionals need to think about making money from their purchases whereas the rest of us see our purchases as just another 'new toy'. I suppose collectors will always pay more than working musicians though there are exceptions - Kirk Hammett's alleged $2m for the Greenie Les Paul though I saw him state in a video he paid less than that.

    Plus there's also this -

     
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  13. Mozzi

    Mozzi https://imgur.com/user/BAMozzy

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    There are many reasons why people buy a musical instrument and not all of them are about the playability and sound of them. The 'highest' priced instruments tend to be to collectors - whether they are collecting it as an instrument or as memorabilia that once belonged to a certain person, played on a certain record etc.

    The reason Greeny often doesn't come up in 'most expensive' guitars is because there is no confirmed price that Kirk Hammet paid. It was on sale at one point before he bought it for $2m which is where its 'alleged' value and/or price came from but Kirk and the seller came to their own arrangement. He though does use it regularly on tour.

    As the Rick Beato video states, the guitars that are put on a pedestal because of the music they were used to create, were not 'vintage' and certainly weren't built with any extra care and/or attention to the instruments we have today. They certainly weren't consistent at all and Jimi's famous Strats came from the dreaded CBS era. Part of the issue though was that the 70's was not a great decade for the electric guitar as both Fender and Gibson cut costs which may of been due to the flood of instruments from Asia too. Musicians would have been forced to seek out older, better instruments which then adds to the belief that 50's/60's guitars were 'special'.

    PRS could well have some very collectable guitars that easily fetch very high figures on the future - Guitars built by Paul for Santana, Al di Meola, Peter Frampton etc - but even those made after 1985, Santana's 'Supernatural' PRS for example. John Mayers PRS guitars could be worth a LOT but again, that comes down to these being more 'collectable', more Memorabilia than an instrument to be played.

    Part of the vintage cost is for rarity and still fetch ridiculous money despite not being a great instrument. A bad 59 burst LP - even in a bad condition can still fetch ridiculous amounts of money despite the fact that a cheap import guitar sounds and plays better. There will be people that would buy the 59 burst just because its a 59 burst BUT if you are a musician, someone that wants an instrument to be played rather than a collectable or asset, I doubt they would touch the 59 Burst.

    Unless some really famous person has a mid 80's PRS that comes up for sale as a collectable piece of memorabilia, then I very much doubt we will see silly money spent on one. If it came out that Mark Knopfler, Prince, SRV for example had played a certain Custom 24 on one of their biggest tracks that year inc a video of them playing that instrument in the studio, that would probably add extra number(s) to the amount that guitar would sell for. As a 'nobody' guitar, it maybe worth $2-3k - but could be a 5, 6 or even 7 figure valuation if the right person owned it.

    Very few, if any, of the big prices paid for vintage guitars is about the guitar as an actual instrument but more about its value as a collectable which also depends on who owned it. With PRS constantly looking at improving their guitars, then as a musician, it wouldn't make sense to buy an 'old' PRS because a new one should be 'better' - at least it will be in areas that are not subjective. You would look for the instrument that is fundamentally better - especially if it also is 'cheaper' because it hasn't got inflated pricing for collectability. That being said, you never know what the future may hold and PRS may have to change their guitars for some reason - scarcity/legality of woods that may force them to change to different materials. All things being equal though, it would depend on the reason for buying - as an instrument or as a collectable.
     
  14. RedGuitars

    RedGuitars New Member

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    Search Reverb for 85', 86', 87' PRS. Yellow w/birds seems to be commanding some coin.
     
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  15. Hotblack Desiato

    Hotblack Desiato New Member

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    Thanks for the reply, you make a number of excellent points.

    My '88 CE is still one of the best guitars I've ever played though I've not played a current example of a bolt-on CE to see what improvements have been made.
     
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  16. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    The collector value of instruments has never made rational sense to me, and is impossible to predict, but then I’ve always used my guitars to make session money with, so haven’t been concerned with that.

    The income has always made the cost of the new instruments irrelevant.

    Been playing PRS since 1991. Have had a boatload over the years, and my perception is they just keep getting better.

    Owning Napoleon’s hat would be a connection to history, and an interesting curio for five minutes I suppose, but unless I’m going to wear the hat, I’d rather not buy it.

    “But Napoleon wore it for all those battles!”

    “How interesting! Will the hat project 3D movies of the actual battles onto a screen, or will it just sit there and be an old hat? Because I actually have an old hat, and it doesn’t do all that much for me.”
     
  17. Alnus Rubra

    Alnus Rubra Loving nature’s wonders

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    It’s probably a bit blown-apart!
     
  18. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    No, actually, there’s a restaurant in Paris dating to his time that has one in a glass case, there’s another one in a private collection that I read about. There may be more. Dude was the Emperor of France for a while. No doubt he could afford more than one hat.

    The one in the restaurant was supposedly left there as collateral for a meal when he was an unknown.

    “This was Napoleon’s hat.”

    “How do you know that?”

    “Has his name right here.”

    “So what? Anyone could have written ‘Napoleon’ inside a hat.”

    “Ah, sir, but this one has been in my family since 1795. So we know.”

    “So do you wear the hat?”

    “Oh no! It’s too valuable! It’s worth millions of dollars, and zillions of francs!”

    “So it just sits in that case?”

    “Oui. Never comes out. Has Napoleon’s sweat stain on the band, right here.”

    “Ewww. That’s disgusting! I’d pay not to have that.”

    “We have Napoleon’s bed in our home.”

    “Does it have the poop stain from when he sh!t the bed at Waterloo?”
     
    #18 LSchefman, Nov 8, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019
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  19. walrus

    walrus New Member

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    Napoleon was a loser! Here is one of the most famous graphics in history, by Charles Minard in 1869. It is a cartographic depiction of numerical data on a map of Napoleon's disastrous losses suffered during the Russian campaign of 1812. The red line is Napoleon marching to Russia (the width of the line is number of men), and the black line is Napoleon marching back (the width is still the number of men!).

    [​IMG]
     
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  20. Tony M.

    Tony M. New Member

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    "Ooh!
    Winter is almost here!
    Let's invade Russia!"
    (See avatar to the left.)
     
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