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Author Topic: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey  (Read 948 times)

Offline randymarsh

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My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« on: August 06, 2018, 05:56:35 PM »
I was planning to buy a special guitar on my birthday two months ago but decided not to purchase it. I do have the funds and STILL want to get that guitar BUT I am not going to buy it because I do not NEED it.

Many of you here do not know who am I (some of you are personal/FB friends of mine) and I do not claim to be an expert when it comes to tone or playing the guitar but I do admit that I was afflicted with GAS and currently have 47 guitars in possession. I stared my collection way back, mostly with low and middle end class guitars. I remember having around 10 of them, mostly Korean and Japanese Ibanez RGs until a friend of mine gave me an advice that radically changed my views and collection. He said "I'd rather have a high end guitar than a couple of low, middle end priced guitars." I pondered on those words and started disposing and replacing my collection with more expensive guitars. After a couple of years my collection grew. I bought my first Washburn N4 back in 2007 and thought "I should buy a backup for this" and bought another N4. And then I bought a backup for my backup even though I do not play guitar professionally. And this led to the path to complete the Nuno Bettencourt line, from the N1 to the N8 and then the Malmsteens, the Petruccis, etc...

A few months ago I visited an engine shop division for the company that I am working for. A colleague of mine handed me a supplier catalogue of tools. From that catalogue you can purchase a monkey wrench ranging from $20 to $2000. WTH? $2000 dollars for a monkey wrench of the same size! It turns out that you cannot use a cheap chrome plated monkey wrench on sensitive equipment as the debris from the chipping of the chrome plating can contaminate the insides and may cause catastrophic damage.

Going back to the guitar and GAS, yes I agree that certain guitars are FIT FOR PURPOSE. It is much easier to get the tones and physically play an expensive guitar than your off the shelf, mid-priced guitar. But then again, a GUITAR is a musical TOOL. And a tool is WORTHLESS if it does not have a PURPOSE to fulfil. Someone can buy an original 59 Les Paul and call it as an investment, there is nothing wrong with that. Or buy a Raon branded guitar and play to your hearts content. To me both are valid scenarios. If one has the financial capability then buy it. But for many of us, financially (and talent) constrained, this would be a waste of time (and money).

HAPPINESS IS RELATIVE. In my youth I used to have a cheap Ovation copy and low end Fender electric guitar. I played my guitars every day until my fingers turned green. I remember my girlfriend back checking my hands and disgusted by the swelling. I was happy back then. I had a cheap Arion Metal Plus and a Samick 15 watt amp. I wished for the Zoom 4040 but would be content if I had the cheaper Zoom 1010. I was a student back then and I can't buy it with my allowance. Both guitars are gone, worn out, broken and unplayable but these guitars provided VALUE.

My tone probably sucked back then compared to the gear I have now. And my current tone would probably sucked compared to somebody else's setup. But does it matter? To me it's a big NO. Based on MY experience, TONE IS RELATIVE to the player as well, a preference. I never liked the sound of the Stratocaster/SRV tone because I am not a rock blues fan. I tried it, with a Deluxe Reverb, Tube Screamer and a Strat but I am not excited by it. BUT IT'S OK! Like many of you, I started chasing for my tone the economical way, with guitar pedals. I did the boutique, the modding, the multi effects unit, the big pedal board and never found contentment. I sold most of my pedals and moved my attention to tube amps. Again, I started with small combos to the impractical half stacks. I eventually found my tone, in a form of a Mesa Boogie Mark V 25. It is not as loud as a half stack and does not have that boxy sound of a combo. I've ended my search for tone. This was a painful and pointless process. I could have been happy with a cheaper/simpler setup but this idea of an ideal tone is stuff of aliens (or capitalist :)). I had to admit, the unboxing of every pedal, amp is more exciting than spending time playing through them.

My point in this long post is that a musical instrument is only valuable if it is fulfilling a purpose set by the player/owner. No one should dictate you why you should not be happy or content with what you have. You should set your goals when searching for the right tone. Be HONEST TO YOURSELF and ask the question, ARE YOU HAPPY NOW?

I'm ending this post with a music video by Extreme  :-D



« Last Edit: August 06, 2018, 06:14:29 PM by randymarsh »


nuno : n4 2.0 n4esa, n4vintage, n4 silver sparkle, n5, n6, n7, n8esa
etc : yjm, axis, jp6, jpxi, jp12, jp13, lp 58 vos, lp 57 ri, lp standard, lp trad, am strat, am tele deluxe, jem7v, uv777, rg prestige, j custom, deluxe reverb, vai legacy, jcm900, axefx

Offline gandydancer123

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2018, 06:01:28 PM »
agree with get a better, a bit expensive instrument that holds value and ages well than 3-or more cheapo crap stuff..
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Online pallas

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2018, 07:58:57 PM »
It goes in cycles or else life would just be one repetitive bore.
O Rose, Thou art sick! The invisible worm that flies in the night, In the howling storm, Has found out thy bed of crimson joy: and his dark secret love, Does thy life destroy.   

William Blake, The Sick Rose

Online Boxedking

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2018, 11:52:20 PM »
Totally agree with the points above.

I also try to view it in a sort of different perspective whereas one may have difficulty achieving the tone in his head because of the lack of skill required. Don't get me wrong, it is indeed a pleasure to play expensive equipment but having the necessary skill set and talent to fully utilize the gear's potential should make owning one justifiable, at least for me.
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Online gitaristadaw

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2018, 06:27:40 AM »
totally agree!


Online mbsunga

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2018, 07:41:21 AM »
this philosophy is temporary. yes the red light is ON for now but sooner or later the green light will turn ON again.

just take it slow........ the red light turns ON pag may guilt feeling na and you feel like overspending.

the only way to stop GAS is to stop playing.

Offline randymarsh

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2018, 08:53:16 AM »
this philosophy is temporary. yes the red light is ON for now but sooner or later the green light will turn ON again.

just take it slow........ the red light turns ON pag may guilt feeling na and you feel like overspending.

the only way to stop GAS is to stop playing.

I do accept your opinion and doubts but I will have to try and be true to my words. I wish the same for the fellow forumites who wishes to escape the pitfall of being addicted to gear :)
nuno : n4 2.0 n4esa, n4vintage, n4 silver sparkle, n5, n6, n7, n8esa
etc : yjm, axis, jp6, jpxi, jp12, jp13, lp 58 vos, lp 57 ri, lp standard, lp trad, am strat, am tele deluxe, jem7v, uv777, rg prestige, j custom, deluxe reverb, vai legacy, jcm900, axefx

Offline gandydancer123

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2018, 10:01:03 AM »
Gear Addicts Anonymous... hehe

I peaked around 2nd and 3rd year especially for pedals...these days I seldom GAS that much anymore..and my board set up has been fixed for many years except for the occasional fuzz pedal exploration.. I still drool at guitars..next level would be those nice custom shop relics or any similar boutique builder.. If I find the right one at the right price... the latest pieces of gear I acquired are mostly given to me as gifts.. the last guitar I bought is a nice Jaguar HH...but thinking of selling it off to fund for guitars I always wanted to try like musicmans or PRS'.... Its a step by step thing for me..."sell one to buy one" kind of set up to keep stuff from piling up at home..
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Offline randymarsh

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2018, 10:20:44 AM »
Its a step by step thing for me..."sell one to buy one" kind of set up to keep stuff from piling up at home..

I like this idea but it is not for me. Lalo na dito sa tinitirhan ko na bihira na ang magandang gitara since the economy started to decline (Sydney lang ata ang city sa buong mundo na walang music store). Also the time spent selling gear is too much for me (hindi ako people person at ayoko mag-aksaya ng oras sa unreasonable offers na palaging nangyayari)

I sold my ESP KH2 a few years ago. I regretted it at hindi na ako makahanap ng kapalit.
nuno : n4 2.0 n4esa, n4vintage, n4 silver sparkle, n5, n6, n7, n8esa
etc : yjm, axis, jp6, jpxi, jp12, jp13, lp 58 vos, lp 57 ri, lp standard, lp trad, am strat, am tele deluxe, jem7v, uv777, rg prestige, j custom, deluxe reverb, vai legacy, jcm900, axefx

Offline denden009

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2018, 02:38:52 PM »
Parang gusto din mag live sa philosophy na 'to lol.

Though I only have 4 guitars right now (pero 5 if kasama yung sira haha), I really want sana na mag settle nalang sa 2-3 guitars but I can't choose kung sino yung ibebenta ko. 

Offline titser_marco

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #10 on: August 07, 2018, 06:09:10 PM »
hate to admit it but for me, the chase is better than the catch most of the time haha
I'd rather be sharp than flat.

Online mbsunga

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #11 on: August 07, 2018, 08:38:18 PM »
I do accept your opinion and doubts but I will have to try and be true to my words. I wish the same for the fellow forumites who wishes to escape the pitfall of being addicted to gear :)
im not saying that im doubting you and your philosophy . my point is dont stop.......just take it slow........do it but dont overdo it.......  there is always room for improvement.....  😉 hopefully a slow GAS will lead to a more fulfilling feeling 😀
« Last Edit: August 07, 2018, 08:47:56 PM by mbsunga »

Online Boxedking

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #12 on: August 07, 2018, 10:05:24 PM »
hate to admit it but for me, the chase is better than the catch most of the time haha
Mukhang eto yun eh. Andito yung thrill. Tapos kapag nabili mo na, "what now?" phase ka na naman.
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Online Bolt Thrower

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2018, 12:18:16 AM »
Having a "Number 1" guitar resolves a lot of GAS really. I have stayed with one kind of amp (5150) too since that's the sound I really like and that amp can last me a lifetime and also be as loud as anybody. 

Offline titser_marco

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #14 on: August 08, 2018, 01:09:44 AM »
Mukhang eto yun eh. Andito yung thrill. Tapos kapag nabili mo na, "what now?" phase ka na naman.

Di ba? I mean, it's fun to chase gear, work long hours, get OT pay, save up on other stuff to get the gear e. I think for most of us dream gear presents a periodic mental challenge that all of us need to get a sense of purpose that we don't get from the drudgery of everyday work.
I'd rather be sharp than flat.

Online firemodel55

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2018, 02:09:06 PM »
Am not happy yet... more stuff to buy.  Bwa hah hah

Offline gandydancer123

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2018, 03:42:53 PM »
hate to admit it but for me, the chase is better than the catch most of the time haha

this too...

Parang gear safari...hehe yung thrill na papunta ka na to meet up and try the guitar...or yung paship na yung pedal.. saya din..

masarap din madaming  gigs at shows at jamming..para na aarawan mga guitars and gear.. isa din yun sa mga great satisfactions in life ko..
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Online firemodel55

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #17 on: August 09, 2018, 07:12:14 AM »
Randy,

I think the more important thing is to understand why each piece is in your inventory.  For each piece in my inventory I can tell you why its there.  And conversely, I can tell you why certain pieces out there are not.

In the last three months, I have heard the best guitars of my life.  If I did stop at the beginning of the year, which I contemplated on, I would have never met these guitars.  This year, I would have to say its vintage guitars.  After almost 30 years buying guitars, its the first time I have considered vintage as a real unhyped option.

I also met a 59 standard that really is off the charts in terms of hiyaw and vibe -- this after trying around 7 bursts.  Thats the real mccoy, and if you ask me that one would be my No.1 but  I realized that despite buying such a guitar, I would have to forego so many other gear currently made, made in the past, and will be made in the future.  Probably ain't worth that sacrifice but who knows thats my brain rationalizing again.

On the other hand, about a year ago, I purchased a new N4 which I think is a 2017 run.  I was able to choose from around 6 N4s and as usual, 4 of them sounded dead, 1 was close and 1 was really exemplary.  When the N4 first came out in the 90s, I bought the padauk version and it sounded so bad.  I was lucky to unload it but I said to myself that I would never buy a Washburn again.   Fast Forward to now, I am enjoying that 2017 N4, of course I took out the lousy seymour duncan in the neck and replaced it with a killer sounding mojotone.  The lesson is:  When it comes to guitars , Never close your doors to possibilities even after suffering from bad luck in guitar selection which is at least a 90% chance for people who cannot hear it.

I have so much gear that probably half of what I own have clocked in zero hours.  It does not make sense until you realize that I treat each piece of equipment as a specific palette of colour that becomes available at some future point of time OR another piece of the signal chain that matches another piece of equipment that I have -- undiscovered as of now.  Its more a testimony to great gear than anything else.  Great gear gets you so pre occupied for so many hours on end that it slows down getting acquainted with others.  So why don't I stop?  I always fear that the great amp designers, guitar fx makers and luthiers will die soon.  Like me they are getting older.  Guitar music has been pushed into a niche thats less popular and therefore less likely to develop further with better equipment.  While the great guitar makers are still alive, I want to buy what they hear. 

I am not interested in the latest multi fx or cheapo or mid priced guitar for precisely the reason that it was designed to cover somebodies overhead.  Simply a lack of soul and worth.  It was not built to be the best.  Sometime you are lucky enough to find a great sounding mid priced guitar e.g. American Professional which I immediately upgrade with expensive accessories and pickups to give it a fighting chance against more boutique offerings -- this is my so called project guitar.  It becomes a platform to test new products.

So to end, with instruments that encourage creativity and art, its less of the brain telling you to stop and more of the heart telling you to let go.
« Last Edit: August 09, 2018, 07:15:30 AM by firemodel55 »

Offline randymarsh

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #18 on: August 10, 2018, 11:05:20 AM »
^ I understand this completely Alex. There are people who are into art and beauty of things. And people shouldn't be jealous of what you have because you have paid the full price (money, time and effort) to get them.
nuno : n4 2.0 n4esa, n4vintage, n4 silver sparkle, n5, n6, n7, n8esa
etc : yjm, axis, jp6, jpxi, jp12, jp13, lp 58 vos, lp 57 ri, lp standard, lp trad, am strat, am tele deluxe, jem7v, uv777, rg prestige, j custom, deluxe reverb, vai legacy, jcm900, axefx

Online Ben Tsing Co

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #19 on: August 10, 2018, 12:18:35 PM »
I still want a unicorn!  :razz:
“The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.” -Albert Einstein

Offline Bart

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #20 on: August 11, 2018, 09:26:06 AM »
Maybe it’s the same monkey wrench that inspired Foo Fighters to sing about?

Offline analog.matt

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #21 on: August 12, 2018, 10:04:20 PM »
basta happy ka, and hindi ka nakakasama sa kapwa or nagkukulang sa mahal mo sa buhay.

doesnt matter if its "fit for purpose"... kasi iba measuring sticks ng happiness ang bawat tao.

a month or two ago may nabalitaan ako na nagbabawas na ng mga semi - vintage yung isang person.  he's been collecting for a few decades. pero hindi marunong mag guitar.  pero yun ang kasiyahan niya eh.

ika nga ni bruce lee, "add what is useful, reject what is useless, add what is specifically your own".

so, if you are still not happy and still wanting to push the envelop...then ask around. absorb the good and helpful info/comments/opinions.
 you hear no so good comments/opinions, reject it. and add what is specifically your own... your preferences etc


but kung fulfilled ka na...

at peace ka na


Offline Stoop

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #22 on: August 13, 2018, 11:20:21 PM »
Priorities do matter as well. Again, for somebody that's actually limited with their budget (spending power), time (actual hours pored over the item bought), and current life standing I can understand if you decide to meet halfway in terms of what you want and need pagdating sa GAS. I've never seen the idea of forking items for "better" (entirely subjective) equipment as a losing battle because there was a time that I wouldn't have been able to appreciate "good sounding" gear if I didn't have 1st hand experience with the lousy stuff out there. It's always learning and appreciating something for what it is and what it could represent further down the line.

Nagumpisa ako sa Epiphone Les Paul Special model because I NEED to have a usable guitar kasi naguumpisa na kaming magkaroon ng gigs and playing without your own equipment is something that is rather inconsiderate imo sa mga taong nagabalang magprepare for said event. Then I paired that up with a cheap Boston Amp because I NEED to have something I can amplify my sound with. The dirt channel sounds like a can of bees but being the young adult that I was, mas interesado akong maiayos yun mga kamay ko sa pagtipa ng mga kanta, so again it was a battle that I decided to meet halfway. When I manage to gather enough funds I bought a Distortion Factory from Digitech because I NEED something to make me sound at most "decent" sa mga gigs na kasama banda namin.

Those gear got the job done, and looking back I really don't mind using them again as a starting point simply because:

1. It solved my problems and needs even if it doesn't necessarily gave me what I want (which at that time I still have no concrete idea)
2. I like the challenge of making them sound decent which made me focus on practicing working around the "quirks" of the things I have and getting the most out of them.
3. I get to play guitar.

Ngayon isa nalang ulit ang gitara ko (a beat up LTD EC-256) kasi binenta ko na halos lahat pati tube amp ko which I really loved kasi ang goal ko na is to get 1 really nice guitar and a 100-watt amp. Once I got that covered anything else is just pure gravy and icing on the cake.

Offline Ralph_Petrucci

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #23 on: August 14, 2018, 10:16:06 AM »
hate to admit it but for me, the chase is better than the catch most of the time haha

same. kaya di ko mapull yung trigger for a new Gibson LP or HH Fender eh. hahaha andito na yung funds pero parang di ko majustify na hahahaha
hahaha ako binibiyak ko muna yung wetpaks para makita kung may yellow thingy hahahaha

Offline CeL1916

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Re: My Philosophy and The End of My GAS Journey
« Reply #24 on: August 14, 2018, 01:24:37 PM »
Good points sir. Totoo yung as long as napapasaya ko nung gamit na binili mo or namemeet yung goals ok na yun.


Ako noon kamote lang ang gitara, pero madalas ang gig , kaya masaya na ako nun, gigging every week with a cheap strat copy and an old zoom4040 haha, naghahanap din ako ng upgrade syempre, pero di siya immediate priority, yun lang ang kaya nun, pero somehow natuto ako makunteto.

Ngayon, Ok na mga gamit ko, hindi super high end gaya ng sa karamihan dito, pero sureball mas disente kesa sa gamit ko noon. Kumpleto ko nadin sila (drums, bass, amps etc.) nagagas padin ba ako? Oo syempre, lalo na sa amp haha, pero di na ganun ka atat. Lately mas nasasabik akong makapag-gig uli kesa bumili ng gamit. Kung kelan nakaipon nako ng disenteng gamit tsaka naman wala ng banda, oras, at syempre gigs. Hassle lang.
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