In Wal-Mart we trust

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by eisprl, Sep 10, 2007.

  1. eisprl

    eisprl Mezzo Piano User

    Age:
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    Sep 26, 2004
    Halifax, NS CANADA
    Hey everyone.

    Has anyone noticed that Wal-Mart is now selling instruments? Trumpets, saxophones, clarinets, flutes, guitars, basses, and drum sets.

    I can plainly see the quality (or lack there of) of the drum sets but what of the other instruments? Does anyone actually have any experience on these horns (your students for example or even you yourselves)? For an absolute beginner would you trust these $200 trumpets to do the job? Or someone like, say, me who might be interested in taking up the bass (for 500 bones which includes an amp). My assumption is that you are probably just paying $200 for a funky blue trumpet case (which so happens comes with a trumpet).

    Eric
     
  2. lmf

    lmf Forte User

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    May 16, 2007
    Indiana USA
    Hi, Eric,

    What local music dealer is going to make repairs on Walmart instruments? Will Walmart repair them locally? Suspect you will have to ship them back to someplace designated by Walmart. The repair will be for a poor instrument or the poor instrument will be replaced with the same poor quality instrument and so forth. What will you use to replace the instrument while it takes weeks or months of repair time?

    You can purchase new or used musical instruments from a local dealer who will usually service products he sells on the spot or in a reasonable time. If you have a gig, he may have a loaner or something you can rent cheaply for the time your gear is out of service in the repair shop.

    In my opinion, the money you save at Walmart will end up being spent at your first and ongoing repairs. You may pay a little more at your local (or reputable mail order music store), but you'll br money ahead in service and repairs.

    Best wishes,

    Lloyd
     
  3. ejaime23

    ejaime23 Pianissimo User

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    Jul 27, 2007
    Houston,TX
    Careful, you might get sued!
     
  4. ecarroll

    ecarroll Artist in Residence Staff Member

    2,212
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    Jul 13, 2005
    NY/CA
    Eric,

    I'm proud to say that I've never set foot in one and am trying to keep this cherished record intact.

    Best,
    EC
     
  5. eisprl

    eisprl Mezzo Piano User

    Age:
    35
    602
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    Sep 26, 2004
    Halifax, NS CANADA
    This is true, no repair man in the right mind would touch a wal-mart horn. I hear that with the Saxophones they come shipped with all the pads corked closed. Most people (who have no real experience) will bring this to a repair man. What the repair man will charge you will equel what you could have paid for a good horn from a dealer.

    But has anyone actually PLAYED one? lol, its a funny thought. I have thought about going to a Walmart and demanding that I try it first in the store before buying it.

    What a crock

    E.
     
  6. lmf

    lmf Forte User

    1,208
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    May 16, 2007
    Indiana USA

    Hi,

    I suspect Walmart would have to prove what I said was a lie or intentional slam at their business.

    It is not! Of course, it probably does not offer a local repair service at all. The item would have to be shipped elsewhere for repairs and how many times it would be willing to do so.

    It would also have to detail the cost of shipping the instrument back for what might be multiple repairs and the length of time the instrument would be out of service.

    By the time it answers those questions, the local music store (or mail order music dealer) might be cheaper or equal in price.

    I'm not saying a person shouldn't buy an instrument at Walmart - that is the customer's choice. But the customer should ask questions about "service after the sale" which he/she could ask of any music dealer before purchase.

    One questions, I would ask before purchase? How do the instruments hold up?. What is the rate of returns to the factory? Where are the instruments made? How will they be serviced? What is the warranty period and what does it cover? Are repairs provided (my cost) after the warranty period and where? Is there a limit in times and years repair service is offered?

    If I didn't receive satisfactory answers, or am not pleased with the answers, I would go elsewhere?

    Maybe you were teasing! But, people are sued all the time.

    Best wishes,

    Lloyd
     
  7. MFfan

    MFfan Fortissimo User

    3,247
    91
    Sep 13, 2006
    Kalamazoo, Michigan
    I don't support the "evil empire" Wal-mart. Fortunately we have Meijer Thrifty Acres as alternative. There was a thread either here, TH, or MF, don't remember, that all these issues were gone over for a young buyer. I think it was Costco, who also sells instruments. The conclusions were that they are cheap Chinese instruments not worthy of purchase, for all the reasons stated in the other posts. Good ebay horns are widely available and many mail order or retail outlets give good values and service. I bought a good student horn from WWBW very reasonably, a Barrington trumpet, which is made in Taiwan and is perfect for my needs and good quality to boot. Discount stores are fine for electronic stuff, etc, but in my opinion, not instruments. Those show up in large numbers on Shopgoodwill.com, many in poor shape and not worth much.
     
  8. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Jun 18, 2006
    Germany
    Hello world!
    Free enterprise is just that. Enterprise.
    Walmart probably won't repair at all. They will replace in the warranty period without question. If there are too many repairs, they change supplier or discontinue the line.
    Many "respectable" music stores also carry the (same?) CHEAP asian instruments. Why? because they sell!
    I would not take any bets that local repair people won't fix those instruments either. They also need income and could probably make those instrument better than new. Turning down a repair guarantees that that customer will NEVER come back for a real horn in the future!
    Yes, I see the shrinking margins and turnover for smaller local stores, but hasn't the Internet already started that?
    The message is that Free Enterprise is not free!
    The message is play before you pay and teachers need the right arguments to convince parents to buy good playing instruments - regardless of the brand name stamped on the bell. The asian companies are not the enemy - our own desires for ever cheaper is!
     
  9. Firestas'1

    Firestas'1 Piano User

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    Dec 21, 2006
    New Jersey
    Amen! In other words, you get what you pay for.
     
  10. ejaime23

    ejaime23 Pianissimo User

    62
    1
    Jul 27, 2007
    Houston,TX

    I was teasing, I was actually making reference to the lawsuit made by these Wal-Mart horns (First Act) agains Brook Mays that sent them out of business (well, icing on the cake anyway). The whole thing started with Brook Mays speaking the truth, in any case, I was only kidding, chances are Wal-Mart won't sue you for saying their instruments are junk on a public forum, oops!
     

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