Going in a guitar store can surely be confusing and shoking.
I mean, those wild high prices for a guitar or a pedal, as well as the low prices of other cheap pedals and similar gear in way more affordable price tags: there definitely can be a huge difference between one model or the other, right?
In fact, all those price tags are influenced by some major factors, and some of those factors doesn’t actually depend on the quality of the gear itself.
MAJOR FACTORS THAT INFLUENCES PRICES
We can say that some of the main elements that influence a gear’s price are:
- Materials: having a more expensive wood for a guitar instead of a cheaper one, or also using plastic as the enclosure of a guitar pedal instead of metal, aluminum or other metallic materials can end in a higher price tag;
- Research and design: no guitar or stompbox is born with magic, and the price of developing a new gear piece will always end in the final cost;
- Branding: the brand can influence the pricing because big brand like Fender and Gibson for electric guitars or EHX or Boss for guitar effects are big players and have a great trust by guitarists, as well as having spent a lot in developing those products;
- Production costs and Construction: the cost for actually making the instrument and the gear.
Beyond materials and production costs, the other two (research and branding) greatly depend on the single brand and can hugely up the price if it is a big brand (in particular a big brand can actually make a pricey product and “use” the big credibility they have gained in the years for marketing and attract more guitarists into their own product).
This also means that a small brand has a lower price because they’re, in fact, small brand: the materials can still be good, the production part made by industry standards, but with a lower price because the “branding” component is way less.
That’s why companies with very low prices (for example behringer, Donner and some series from Danelectro) can have some pedals with a very similar price to more expensive models in the same effect type.
Adding to that, thinking about pedals, the materials can be reduced to very cheap prices (the parts that actually make the sounds are electronic parts such as transistors and diodes, that have a low price) and also using plastic enclosures (like Behringer) can take prices to a very low price range.
INFLACTION IN MUSIC GEARS
In the last years, as you might have noticed, electric guitars and other musical stuff have grown in pricing: you can read more about this in this article from PremierGuitar about inflation spikes in the guitar industry.
In short, the rise in costs was constant in the last years, and will probably not stop soon, but what can we do about this?
In fact, you can now find a higher demand for kits that let you build a guitar or a pedal (the so-called DIY kits), but if you’re not ready to build something for yourself you can still search in the list below searching for the cheapest pedals on the market for electric guitarists on a budget.
Enjoy and keep on playing!
Here below you can find a list of cheap stompboxes and pedals divided for type of effect and below the type-divided section also another one for “best effects for X genre”, with a selection of top models for a specific genre.
(The list is still in first drafts, so some articles are still being written)
LIST OF CHEAP ELECTRIC GUITAR – BEST VALUE FOR A LOW PRICE (DIVIDED FOR TYPE)
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- The cheap most popular Fulltone OCD Overdrive Pedals for Electric Guitar;
LIST OF LOW COST AFFORDABLE MODELS (DIVIDED FOR GENRE)
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