They’re both easy to find and sport a sizable car park, a massive win there.
Entering via the back of the store you pass some electric drum kids and the massive wall of guitars unveils itself to you. 5 rows high over two floors. Goodness.
The first thing that shocked me is HOW BIG IS AN EPIPHONE DOT. Seriously. A lot of the guitars were a lot bigger than I’d been expecting for some reason. I’ve got a semi (childish laugh), but that’s around Les Paul sized, so that may have swayed my expectations. Also HOW HEAVY IS A LES PAUL! Even the weight relieved ones.
And that leads me on to the joy of being able to touch and try all these guitars that I’ve spent a lifetime wondering about. The Yamaha selection was a little light, not a Pacifica or RGX in sight. But I did get to meet a Revstar (sadly locked to the stand) and the Variax Standard. Which I’ve fallen in love with a little, despite it being like a Pacifica 112 in build, but with an SSS configuration (I have this on good authority from Yamaha Music London over email)
As an interesting experiment we stood there and did a side by side comparison of a £500 Epiphone Les Paul and a £2000 Gibson Les Paul. Blind folded, I wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference. They were both in my dream jet black with a white trim.
I’ve never actually touched or played any of these instruments so it was like a lifetime’s ambition fulfilled to get a feel of all of them. Never just buy online like I’d been tempted, go to a place that lets you experience it.
Winning guitars of the day for me were:
- Squire Affinity Jazzmaster (such a plain looking thing, cheap, but I was drawn to it)
- The Telecaster (OH MY GOD, it fits me like a glove)
- Variax (oddly, having not heard it)
The surprise of the day to me was that I preferred the feel in playing of a Stratocaster to a Les Paul and felt more affinity to it. But neither was close to that Telecaster.
Also, the staff left us well alone, which I very much appreciate being a bit of an introvert. I think if I’d been spoken too I’d have run away.
A lovely day out and should the prices be right, I will return come the purchase of a new guitar!