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Old 03-03-2005, 03:50 PM
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beatlenut beatlenut is offline
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Default Tobias Music - great service

Just wanted to plug Tobias Music in Downers Grove, IL. I bought a used 814ce in near mint condition for an awesome price. Ken was great to work with and very honest. Got the guitar in 2 days.

He is an authorized Taylor dealer, so I'm sure he has a few of those laying around too
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Old 03-04-2005, 07:54 AM
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Default Tobias

Ditto. I live in a neighboring town, and can tell you personally that Ken and Margaret Tobias are super people. The shop is small (how do they get so many guitars in there?), but the service is terrific. They have a web site and the new stuff in inventory is listed under "Dad's Chalkboard." They also show selected used guitars on the web site, but the photos are not a complete listing and a telephone call could get your more information regarding other used instruments.

This may sound like an ad for them, but I have no connection with them, other than being a very satisfied repeat customer.
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Old 03-05-2005, 08:34 AM
thewallylama thewallylama is offline
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I bought a used, sunburst 614ce from them. I noticed it on a google search. I called the store and spoke to Ken in person. I was a little nervous about ordering a used, expensive (for me) Taylor sight unseen, but my conversation with Ken eased that! He shipped it right out to me here in New Mexico. I don't think they are particularly trying to sell online--I believe they mostly just want to post their inventory so that people come by in person. I would definitely recommend them.
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Old 12-21-2006, 03:08 PM
desert surfer desert surfer is offline
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Default Tobias Music

I have known Ken and Margaret for 26+ years and have bough 14 new and used guitars, banjo, Amp from them. Ken is very professional, honest, friendly and fun to talk to. His store is small but his selection is amazingly big especially for Taylor guitars. Everytime my guitars need new strings or neck adjustment, he is the man. You don't get his kind of service and super low prices from other big box retailers. I just wish Ken would carry more high end brands other than Taylor, Martin, Santa Cruz and Guild. (he used to carry Larrivee & Deering) I will continue to order from him when I move west to desert country someday.

"'The desert is an ocean in which you surf where you please"

Last edited by desert surfer; 02-07-2007 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 12-21-2006, 04:54 PM
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I'll put a plug for Ken as well. I bought a Taylor 414-rce from him and was surprised at how competitive his price was for a shop so small. Actually, it's one of the smallest guitar shops I've ever seen. But he moves out a lot of guitars! That just goes to show you that you don't need a fancy, glitzy store to sell lots of guitars. Service goes a long way (and price of course...)
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Old 12-22-2006, 12:13 PM
franchelB franchelB is offline
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I bought some guitar string sets from them...but that was over 20 years ago...I DO remember it being such a small store!
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Old 12-22-2006, 12:18 PM
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My singing partner Susan (SageWoman) and her boyfriend Phil both use Ken as their stringed-instrument guru (Phil lives in St. Charles so Ken's shop is convenient to him). I've heard nothing but great things aboout Tobias Music.
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Old 05-15-2007, 12:13 PM
jmhd28 jmhd28 is offline
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Default Tobias

I too want to chime in on Tobias and their excellent store. The guitars here are absolutely pristine in the case and play beautifully. He unfortunately makes it extremely hard to pick out just one guitar since they all play and sound so nice. His customer service is unmatched. I will always buy from him and bring my guitar in when it needs attention.
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Old 05-15-2007, 04:35 PM
FingerPlucked FingerPlucked is offline
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I don't know . . . I walked in with my 310ce for a set up. I walked out with the guitar playing the best it ever had, and also with a new 414e Ltd.

I don't know how it happened, but I'm pretty sure it was through unfair business practices. I mean, first of all he had a nice selection of guitars, far better than what you'd find at the big stores. When I said I'd been thinking about a 414ce, he said sure, he had one, and would I also like to try one of the 414 limiteds?

When I asked him a few "trial" questions (technical things I throw out that I already know the answer to, but I want to see first of all if the salesperson knows the line thoroughly, and more importantly, if he doesn't, whether he's the type of salesperson to lie his way through it in an attempt to make a quick sale). I was kind of disappointed because Ken knew his stuff. And he seemed to know exactly what I was doing.

I kept going back and forth between the standard 414 and the limited. I admitted that I really liked the looks of the walnut with maple wedge. I was admonished to choose a guitar based on it's sound, not it's looks. (I mean, where do they come up with this crap? Don't they know that looking cool is #1?)

Ken's wife was my personal guitar stand. As I kept switching back and forth, she'd hand me one guitar and take the other. Back and forth and back and forth again. I spent at least an hour doing that. She didn't complain. She remained a neutral observer until I specifically asked for her opinion. And although I'd like to say something nice about her, she had the gall to confirm my opinion: that for my playing style, the limited sounded a little fuller and a little nicer.

I do what I can to support the smaller stores, but I won't go so far as to pay them more than I can buy a product for elsewhere. I knew what these guitars sold for at the big stores. I also had a pretty good idea how much further the big stores would come off their advertised price. So I was going to explain it to Ken and let him know the sale was his, if he could give me the price I was looking for. I asked him what they wanted for the limited, fully prepared to laugh in his face and boldly give him my terms.

But these guys cheat at every turn. Ken answered with a price well below what the big guys charge, and it was only a hair over my target discount (which I knew was going to take some serious effort to get). I'm certain he knew what he was doing: by giving me a great price without any kind of haggle, he was keeping that extra $20 or $30 for himself. And he KNEW that I'd feel guilty trying to get him to come down from such a reasonable initial offer.

So I hung my head in shame and quietly bought the guitar.

My advice: Stay away from Tobias Music. They'll just sell you a guitar and you'll walk away bragging about the experience to your friends. Somehow, these guys have got to be stopped.
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Old 05-15-2007, 05:01 PM
Bluelew Bluelew is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beatlenut View Post
Just wanted to plug Tobias Music in Downers Grove, IL. I bought a used 814ce in near mint condition for an awesome price. Ken was great to work with and very honest. Got the guitar in 2 days.

He is an authorized Taylor dealer, so I'm sure he has a few of those laying around too
Wow, Beatlenut started this thread over 2 years ago, I miss that guy.
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Old 05-15-2007, 07:51 PM
rgregg48 rgregg48 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beatlenut View Post
Just wanted to plug Tobias Music in Downers Grove, IL. I bought a used 814ce in near mint condition for an awesome price. Ken was great to work with and very honest. Got the guitar in 2 days.

He is an authorized Taylor dealer, so I'm sure he has a few of those laying around too
I can attest to that, Tobias is a fine shop..

Rick
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Old 05-16-2007, 12:36 AM
Smurf42 Smurf42 is offline
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That was hilarious FingerPluck! LOL!
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Old 07-09-2007, 07:36 AM
HueyGirl HueyGirl is offline
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Post Better Late than Never! I always say.

So what if this post was started a couple years ago...

We just started lessons over at tobias this summer, my son and I.

He started first and has taken quite a liking to Mr Tobias, and wants to go in to the store after every lesson to say HI to him. Of course, the selection of shiny guitars hanging up is quite an enticement as well.

Ken is very good with kids, as well as his wife, and they both are very patient with my son, and they let him try the guitars out. It's usually me who says no!

The teacher we have is great. So great in fact, that I went in and purchased my own guitar and have started taking lessons myself! After 25+ years of not playing an instrument, there I was staring at all the guitars, trying to make a selecting. I finally made my choice, after having the input of both the Tobias' and I am super happy with my guitar.

Now if only my fingers would obey!!

Last edited by HueyGirl; 07-09-2007 at 07:37 AM. Reason: spelling errors
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:53 PM
crespowu crespowu is offline
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Quote:
I bought a used 814ce in near mint condition for an awesome price
How much did it cost?
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:59 PM
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Pricing discussions are not allowed. In most cases, I would recommend that you contact the individual directly. Unfortunately, in this case it will be very difficult to get a response back from Beatlenut -- He passed away in Autumn, 2006.
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