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(@dennisf6)
Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 74
 

The guitar I play the most is made in Korea -
Fender Koa Strat, beautiful wood, Seymour Duncan pickups...

I want to play guitar very badly -
and I do!


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(@the-dali)
Noble Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 1507
 

A few thoughts...

#1, G&L tributes are made in indonesia now
#2, I highly doubt that you will be able to buy any recognizable brand in Korea. I'm sure, from an import/export perspective, that these guitars are manufactured for export only
#3, given current costs, I have to think it might actually cost you MORE when you factor in duty taxes

-=- Steve

"If the moon were made of ribs, would you eat it?"


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 Ande
(@ande)
Honorable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 659
Topic starter  

I see what you mean, and will let you know how it goes. I know a fair number of people who have done well this way on electronics manufactured in Korea, and suspect there'll be a way with guitars.

WHile I haven't been to Korea, it seems that with a lot of other things manufactured in Korea ( TVs, stereos, mp3players, cameras, according to people who are there) primarily for export, are available locally, and at dramatically reduced prices. If it works with guitars, rock and roll, cause I need (really want!) a new one.

But for the kind of guitar a player like me needs (I suck) we aren't talking enough money to warrant any duty or customs declaration. And in any case, where I live, if the issue comes up, I'll give the customs agent $5. Works every time!!!

Best,
Ande


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(@gnease)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 5058
 

Dali makes good points. In addition to G&L/Indonesia, many companies that were building in Korea have moved production to China (still Korean companies). This means even known and repected Korean brands such as Samsung and LG (electronics) build at least some products in China.

-=tension & release=-


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(@rob77)
Estimable Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 137
 

My Grestch Electromatic was built in Korea. I played a Genuine Grestch Nashville the other day (the model it's...ahem...modelled after) and I'd take the Electromtaic any day. They're probably sold as Grestch over there too...

"Who says you can't 'dive bomb' a bigsby?!"


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(@greybeard)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 5899
 

If it's anything like the clothing industry, you'll find loads of brand name stuff - all of it seconds.

In Sri Lanka, where a lot of top brand names have their production, you can pick up stuff really cheap - we got Columbia jackets for about $30 and the only thing that we could see was a couple of sewn on in the wrong direction. The same jacket would cost well over 200 in Germany.

It could well be the same in Korea. Just don't forget that they have been rejected for a reason - find it and decide whether you can live with it.

I started with nothing - and I've still got most of it left.
Did you know that the word "gullible" is not in any dictionary?
Greybeard's Pages
My Articles & Reviews on GN


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 Ande
(@ande)
Honorable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 659
Topic starter  

Good news- just discovered that a Korean colleague I'll be working with is a closet rocker. He has a USA Strat (must have cost him a fortune, but he seems happy) but also has quite a few other locally purchased guitars, and has promised to show me around the shops and the town. Asked what I thought of the Lite Ash Fender Strat- I've never played one, but they look good in pictures.

best,
Ande


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(@ksac32)
Reputable Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 366
 

I've got a 2001 MIK Epiphone Casino manufactured in the Peerless factory. It is every bit as well made as my 1970 MIK (Kalamazoo) Gibson ES-330.

Main differences:

  • Epi has a poly finish 330 has a nitro finish

  • 330 has higher fret access

  • 330 sounds better unplugged (I suspect because of it's age, better wood, better finish and nylon saddles)

  • Both sound very close to each other plugged in

  • Epi has a slightly wider neck (perhaps the difference between metric and US measurements)

  • 330 has real MOP inlays in the neck - Epi has plastic
  • After all that, one must take into consideration that I bought the guitar used, and the previous owner replaced the tuners with Grovers (not necessary, I find no fault with the factory Klusons), and also replaced the switch and pots with US parts. He may have also replaced the pups, but I'm not going to take the guitar apart to tell, I'd rather play it ;)

    Insights and incites by Notes

    nice guitars 8)

    http://www.soundclick.com/kensacco
    http://www.soundclick.com/thetools


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    (@wes-inman)
    Illustrious Member
    Joined: 19 years ago
    Posts: 5599
     

    My Casino was made in Korea as well, outstanding craftmanship. :D

    Aren't Schecter guitars made in Korea??

    If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis


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    (@chris-c)
    Famed Member
    Joined: 17 years ago
    Posts: 3460
     

    Guitar makers seem to shift their production all over the place, so it's hard to guess what you'll find right now.

    I have an epi SG400 made in Korea (as far as I can tell it was made by by Samick for Epiphone) and it's one of my favourite guitars. Epi has since set up their own factory in China, and the same model is now made there. I have one of those too. It sounds OK (same electronics) but the woodwork and general finish is definitely not as good as the Korean one.

    Good luck finding something you like - I'm sure that you'll find quite a range, from cheap and not too good right up to great quality - but do let us know how it all went and what you found. :)

    Chris


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    (@simonhome-co-uk)
    Honorable Member
    Joined: 18 years ago
    Posts: 678
     

    I have a Korean made ESP LTD MH-400 and the build quality is incredible. Best build quality I've seen in any guitar. Its is one of the higher end LTD mind u. I dunno if the proper ESPs are build in the Korea or not...I would guess America

    Heres a question: Why does it always say 'made in Korea'?...We're just left to assume its South Korea. lol I mean I know thats obvious, but they should specify as there is no such country as Korea. Only South Korea and North Korea


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    (@ricochet)
    Illustrious Member
    Joined: 19 years ago
    Posts: 7850
     

    I think historically the U.S. & U.K. didn't recognize North Korea and had no trade with them, so "Korea" was South Korea. I could be wrong, but we've never had anything legally imported from North Korea to my knowledge.

    "A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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    (@hyperborea)
    Prominent Member
    Joined: 16 years ago
    Posts: 833
     

    I have a Korean made ESP LTD MH-400 and the build quality is incredible. Best build quality I've seen in any guitar. Its is one of the higher end LTD mind u. I dunno if the proper ESPs are build in the Korea or not...I would guess America

    "Proper" ESPs are made in Japan since "Electric Sound Products" is a Japanese company. The LTD and Grass Roots models are made in Korea and maybe some of the ESP models. ESP's Edwards and Navigator models and at least some of the ESP models are made in Japan.

    You're right about ESP's quality though. I have two of the Edwards models and there is nothing that I can buy for double the amount that they cost me that comes close to the quality.

    Pop music is about stealing pocket money from children. - Ian Anderson


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     Ande
    (@ande)
    Honorable Member
    Joined: 15 years ago
    Posts: 659
    Topic starter  

    We're just left to assume its South Korea. lol I mean I know thats obvious, but they should specify as there is no such country as Korea. Only South Korea and North Korea

    That's your western education showing. South Korea doesn't recognise North Korea, nor vice versa. Both consider themselves to be the "rightful" government of the entire Korean nation, and the other to be tools of an empire. (Which empire depends on where you're looking at it from. Tee hee) But I've never met a South Korea, nor a North Korean. All simply identify themselves as Korean, and both countries call themselves, internally at least, Korea. Maybe it has to do with being a very old country, and the north south distinction is relatively new...

    A contact in Korea has promised to take me to the Guitarshop on our first weekend, can hardly wait. His recommendation is to buy a "local," not for export guitar, as they come from the same factories, meet the same specs, and are much cheaper without being labeled "Fender" or even "Epiphone." Also promised a good range, as many models (epiphones, for example) which are now made in China, are still available under other names but from the same factory in Korea. Methinks I'm gonna have to play a lot of guitars.


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    (@ricochet)
    Illustrious Member
    Joined: 19 years ago
    Posts: 7850
     

    All simply identify themselves as Korean, and both countries call themselves, internally at least, Korea. Maybe it has to do with being a very old country, and the north south distinction is relatively new...It was a creation of the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. at the end of WWII. Russia had colonial aims in that area for a long time, and the USSR jumped in to declare war against the Japanese (who had dominated Korea for something like 50 years before that) on August 8, 1945, 2 days after Hiroshima was bombed, so they'd get a healthy claim of Japanese held territory. They and the US (who really didn't care a hoot about Korea at the time) divvied the peninsula up at the 38th Parallel, which is where the line came back to again when the Korean War finally concluded in a stalemate in 1953.

    "A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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