April 24, 2011

12 string acoustic guitar › Cort › Cort Guitars ›

Richard has been playing guitar since the age of 8, educated at the Guitar Institute in London and specializing in online consultation and World Wide deliveries for 21 years - Each and every one hand finished bespoke to the customers requirement.

Richards reputation for first class playing instruments and dedicated service goes before him - with customers in most Countries around the World.  In the past 3 years alone Richard has accrued over 1000 testimonials from customers all around the World.  Every single customer dealt with personally by Richard.
Richard only sells guitars he truly believes in - each brand being an Industry benchmark in their price or genre - a view built on 21 years research.
Richard is available most hours for consultation which is provided in a personal but comprehensive and professional manner via the live chat facility.

Specialist guitar advice for 21 years

I (Richard) have been providing specialist advice for 21 years. My previous business Regent Guitars ran from 1995 to 2008, starting with just 6 guitars and closed selling 8-10 guitars a day with a turnover well in excess of £1,500,000.

So why did it close?

In 2008 I closed Regent Guitars and opened Richards Guitars with a desire to get back to ONLY selling guitars I love, that I have a true passion for – which should also mean a volume that I could handle personally from beginning to end – like my previous business USED to be!  To this day the only person I have to rely on is my wife Teresa who liases with all my customers during the order process and I am more worried about letting her down than vice versa - behind every good man as they say!

Regent Guitars had left me disillusioned and “too close” to the reality of how most guitars are sold. I didn’t want to be part of the marketing “machines”. It just wasn’t me and I believe anyone who is truly passionate about guitars and in my industry will know exactly what I mean.   It seems 90% of my industry is hype - so I try and focus on the 10% I truly believe in.

My reputation now spans Locally, Nationally and Internationally with customers from Stratford Upon Avon  to Singapore.

I specialize in a select range of guitar brands—Brands which I believe represent something unique in the market be it value, quality, tonal range or shear beauty.

You may not realise you can buy all solid wood hand made acoustic guitars from as little has £500, even a superb quality electric guitar hand made in the UK from £600!  If you chat to me I will tell you how to avoid the mass produced, over hyped brands and focus your attention to stunning beauty!

Guitars sold on personal passion, not marketing hype

Heard of Eastman, Furch,  Faith, Gordon Smith or Godin?  If you haven’t then you need to have a chat with me before you spend your hard earnt cash on your next guitar.

I am aware that many people do not buy for “quality only” but for image and prestige. If you want a Fender, Ibanez, Shecter, Gibson, Jackson etc. then you are talking to the wrong man entirely (although I do specialize in used examples which will play better than new and won’t lose value on resale) – you can find these products hung on a hundred guitar shop walls around the UK but for me personally they just don't excite me and conversely represent well marketed, over hyped mediocrity.

Just remember when you are talking to the next salesman that he probably cares not for you, but for his employer. His job is to sell you what is hung on the wall – not to ensure you get the very best guitar available in the market.

Want to know about guitars with heart and soul? I am your man. From a quality starter guitar through to World Class hand made guitars.   With honesty and integrity central to my philosophy in life and business I assure you that you are in safe hands and I will guide you based on your needs and requirements. If I can’t help I will tell you and point you to “a man that can”.

Try guitars in a welcoming environment..

I try and make your stay at Richards as enjoyable as possible, which may include boring you to death about the guitars available, their history/pedigree etc. or it may just be you want to spend some time on your own trying out the guitars available. Either way you should find the shop welcoming and totally un-intimidating.

Read: Richards History - From Birth To Now!

12 String Acoustic Guitars: Tel 01789 263333

12 String Acoustic Guitars

12 string acoustic guitars seem to be an area that I have not really focused my attention to over the years - which on reflection is a bit of an oversight because if there was ever a guitar that needed the diligent quality control and set up procedure that we provide with every guitar sold - its the 12 string acoustic guitar!

So why do 12 string acoustic guitars need so much extra care?

A primary reason is that structuraly there is a huge amount of pressure on the top of the guitar.  Double the amount of strings equals double the pressure so not only must the guitar be structuraly sound to cope with this addtional pressure in the short term (IE playing well when you buy it) but it also needs to survive long term - and this is one of the fears I always have with budget 12 strings.

If you are looking to buy the cheapest 12 string guitar then check out this model from an Amazon dealer

[caption id="attachment_654" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="This 12 string sounds like amazing value - and the reviews are superb too - so whats the catch?"]£54 for a 12 string acoustic guitar?[/caption]

 The 12 string shown above is an example of what you will never find available via myself.  The reviews sound superb - of course at the price if you can afford to lose the money then have a gamble and buy one.  However if you could afford to lose the money, why are you risking it on a guitar which could be a total dead loss - trust me - 16 years in retail studying guitar production tells me for £54 the odds are stacked strongly against you in the short term (IE out of the box) and the long term (IE what it plays like in a few months or years time).

Statistically you will get "good" ones at this price and if you want to gamble with your purchase I would recommend somewhere like Argos . At least if the guitar doesn't work you can pop back to your local Argos and swap it for another.  If you buy a 12 string guitar under £100 you have to expect problems - so its all about expectation.  Lets just say that if the guitar available at Argos at £54 was sold to 10 people I will eat my hat if all 10 came to the same conlusion as the reviewers - in fact, if half of them said the same I would be amazed.

The main reason why you won't find budget 12 string acoustic guitars available at Richards Guitars is not because it is impossible to find a good one, but the odds are stacked very much against you.  Every customer of mine has the peace of mind that the guitar will play perfectly and they will receive long term support.  Neither of these objectives are commercially viable at the budget end.

So... what constitutes a "decent" 12 string which I can personally endorse and support long term?

The Cort AD870 12 - Online at £169

[caption id="attachment_657" align="aligncenter" width="150" caption="The AD87012 by Cort is a great launchpad into the 12 string guitar world"][/caption]

As you may or may not know most of my personal recommendations under£500 will often focus on Cort guitars.    Cort have been central to so many of my recommendations over the past 16 years - not under their own brand name entirely but also for acoustic brands such as Tanglewood, Fender, Avalon and more - the biggest brands utilise Cort production or have done at some point to further their brand image.  So instead of spending extra on brand image you will always get the best value if you go direct to Cort.

For £169 you will not get a solid top but a very stable, reliable work horse instrument which sounds superb.  The great thing about buying a 12 string is a lot of the rules for acoustic tone kind of go out the window.  IE do you want a 12 string with extra depth of tone?  Frankly a brighter, lighter sound which you get from a laminate can actually really compliment the 12 string tone.  However...saying that I would always recommend you get one with a solid top if you can (because great tone is great tone to me - and that comes from solid tone woods - not laminate). 

Upgrade to the Cort Earth 70 12 for a 12 string with solid top.

The new Cort SF12 is a wonderful electro acoustic 12 string for a professional acoustic and plugged in performer at under £450 online.