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HILARiOUS Guitar Center Recording Department "Encounter" Effects Pedals, Units & Accessories
Old 28th August 2008
  #91
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonCarlston View Post
Complete waste of time, there are much more efficient ways of gaining "real world experience". Run...run as fast as you can. Do not listen to this man. He has either never had a decent job to compare to, or he is flat out lying.
Parable:

Guy gets job at guitar center because he knows a little pro audio ie. more than most of the customers. Guy is thrust into environment where there are other sales people that know more and sell more. Guy gets frustrated instead of learning to run a business. Guy doesn't make money and quits.

Repeat process x 30 other employees.

New guy gets hired, develops some business skills, becomes the authority on say acoustic foam. Learns everything he can about foam placement, shapes, etc. Becomes the guy other sales people turn to to send their room acoustics customers. New guy starts to learn other studio gear, and begins to have customers he sold bass traps to start to buy other things from him. New guy suffers through making low money a couple of months. He makes his life have low overhead at the time to get by. New guy slowly becomes not new guy and instead a successful business entity of his own through guitar center that makes enough to live on. No longer new guy watches 30 more new guys come and go.

Moderately skilled new engineer guy buys studio equipment and opens first studio. New engineer guy has "build it and they will come" mentality. He places ads in local magazines that say "recording studio" etc. but everybody and their uncle has recording studio gear and there are much more experienced and established studios out there. He buys the wrong equipment because it looks cool, or it's expensive and sees that it's what other people have etc. Guy gets thrust into environment of no customers calling from ads and not just walking in the door. Guy has high overhead and few customers. He discovers running sessions for other people is completely different than for himself. Guy gets frustrated and studio goes under.

Repeat process x 30 new recording studios.

Moderately skilled new engineer who realizes the business aspect of his endeavor buys minimal recording studio equipment. Learns everything he can read about recording. Goes to local reggae shows and starts offering free studio time to decent acts. Starts recording people in his garage to gain experience and they bear with semi-skilled engineering because it's free. "Ya mon take your time mon. We'll just smoke dis spliff while you figure out where da sound went" Engineer business guy makes joke of some kind while he figures out the problem. Eventually he gets good and is able to make it through this time of no income because his overhead is low. He learns that he can work with the customers that have their own gear to finish their projects because he knows more than them. Eventually he develops a portfolio, and begins to charge people. Everyone in local reggae already knows who he is and other types of acts are hearing of him too. He takes the step and rents a warehouse instead of the garage. He slowly becomes a self sustaining established studio and watches new studios come and go.
Old 28th August 2008
  #92
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
I'm still waiting for someone to answer what the data stream actually is.
A GS member from another forum gave me the specific answer.
It is AES 42-2001, but that is actually only a variant of a VERY common digital audio data format.
The very same digital audio data stream is what is traveling down most all USB, Firewire, Light Pipe, PCI, etc...

With so many people jumping on correcting my attitude with the guy at GC I'd figure that such sage advice would come from someone who possesed this knowledge, too.

BTW, the GS poster that DID know and emailed me the info didn't act like a jerk.
Dude, you already know the answer:

Can Anyone Explain USB Mic's Data Stream (AES 42-2001)

whats your deal?

This thread was about a guitar center encounter, that's what we are discussing. Now that you know the answer to your other question by asking it in a specific thread you come back here and berate us for not answering a question you never specifically asked in this thread?

Calling people smart asses who are members of a forum that answer your questions and whom you are a member of as well is... a little... odd.
Old 29th August 2008
  #93
Gear Nut
 
tracktension's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by StarfishMusic View Post
Parable:

Guy gets job at guitar center because he knows a little pro audio ie. more than most of the customers. Guy is thrust into environment where there are other sales people that know more and sell more. Guy gets frustrated instead of learning to run a business. Guy doesn't make money and quits.

Repeat process x 30 other employees.

New guy gets hired, develops some business skills, becomes the authority on say acoustic foam. Learns everything he can about foam placement, shapes, etc. Becomes the guy other sales people turn to to send their room acoustics customers. New guy starts to learn other studio gear, and begins to have customers he sold bass traps to start to buy other things from him. New guy suffers through making low money a couple of months. He makes his life have low overhead at the time to get by. New guy slowly becomes not new guy and instead a successful business entity of his own through guitar center that makes enough to live on. No longer new guy watches 30 more new guys come and go.

Moderately skilled new engineer guy buys studio equipment and opens first studio. New engineer guy has "build it and they will come" mentality. He places ads in local magazines that say "recording studio" etc. but everybody and their uncle has recording studio gear and there are much more experienced and established studios out there. He buys the wrong equipment because it looks cool, or it's expensive and sees that it's what other people have etc. Guy gets thrust into environment of no customers calling from ads and not just walking in the door. Guy has high overhead and few customers. He discovers running sessions for other people is completely different than for himself. Guy gets frustrated and studio goes under.

Repeat process x 30 new recording studios.

Moderately skilled new engineer who realizes the business aspect of his endeavor buys minimal recording studio equipment. Learns everything he can read about recording. Goes to local reggae shows and starts offering free studio time to decent acts. Starts recording people in his garage to gain experience and they bear with semiskilled engineering because it's free. "Ya mon take your time mon. We'll just smoke dis spliff while you figure out where da sound went" Engineer business guy makes joke of some kind while he figures out the problem. Eventually he gets good and is able to make it through this time of no income because his overhead is low. He learns that he can work with the customers that have their own gear to finish their projects because he knows more than them. Eventually he develops a portfolio, and begins to charge people. Everyone in local reggae already knows who he is and other types of acts are hearing of him too. He takes the step and rents a warehouse instead of the garage. He slowly becomes a self sustaining established studio and watches new studios come and go.
wow the first part sounds kinda like me , but to clearify i only went to CG to find some kind of audio experience , not sales or money .and i know that sounds kinda ********.but i have a full time carrer as a fire fighter / e.m.t. so dont really care for the sales thing.

but on the other hand the last thing sounds like me up to the point of getting a real place to record out of , so maybe there's hope for me in this audio world yet .
Old 30th August 2008
  #94
Gear Head
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
Are you the guy I talked to at Guitar Center?
no sir.
i would have been a condescending prick or something.
did you plan on putting 4 usb mic's on a hub? or 4 usb mic's into
four laptops?

btw you ever ask what the thd is on 300 dollar reference monitors, then ask how many watts before any sort of answer can be put forth?
Old 30th August 2008
  #95
Gear Head
 

data stream explained.
mic takes some analog in
converts to digital
flys down crazy usb cable into computer
using
some info from here
USB Protocol Specification
then the computer sees it as an audio interface
then you record that jaunx yo.
Old 30th August 2008
  #96
I hate to be the devil's advocate in this case... but you know, whoever said 7 out of 10 people who ask questions are idiots is correct in a lot of ways. They're just not well informed, and should be referred to as recordists, hobbyists, ect...

These salespeople deal with stupid situations day in and day out. I know, because I was an SA Recording/PA/Lighting/Keyboard manager for about a year.

I once had a guy come in and ask me why they placed the speaker pole hole on the top of his sub woofer. Turns out he was mounting his sub on top of the stand up-side down.

Those kind of situations... I had to bite my cheek to keep from laughing. In a way, it was sort of tragic.

So... it seems to me like this guy's on the opposite end of the spectrum. There are those who are so informed they get off on picking an audio fight.

If you're going to pick a fight at a music store... don't do it over a USB mic.

Do it when the used car salesman tells you a PreSonus Eureka has been an industry standard for years.

Phukin' music stores.....
Old 30th August 2008
  #97
Lives for gear
 
dannygold's Avatar
 

Asking your average GC employee what protocol comes out of a USB mic is like asking a dunkin' donuts employee if their coffee is fair trade.

And yes, I know there are great GC employees. And probably coffee experts at the Dunk... thus why I said "average".
Old 30th August 2008
  #98
Quote:
Originally Posted by dannygold View Post
Asking your average GC employee what protocol comes out of a USB mic is like asking a dunkin' donuts employee if their coffee is fair trade.
"Sure it's a fair trade. You give us the money... we give you the coffee!"
Old 30th August 2008
  #99
Lives for gear
 

dbbubba,

if it was a SIMPLE question, why was there a need for such a seasoned pro like you to even ask it??? You should've been smart enough not to ask someone less qualifies such a detailed question. (No disrespect to the guitar center peeps.) You know u were looking to come tell a story on GS. Let me ask you a SIMPLE question. Do you know what GOOGLE is??? Anybody with any sense knows that google provides all the details u need about anything. Go read the tech specs and white papers for whatever that architechure in the USB cable is. Don't come to GS and be a POS. Oh, and btw guaranteed I'd say that to ur face. dfegaddbbubba
Old 30th August 2008
  #100
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mr. torture's Avatar
 

I have purchased stuff at Guitar Center before, I go there when I am in a pinch and need something fast. I don't really care how knowledgeable the staff is, I simply go in and purchase what I set out to get. All I care is that somebody there can run a cash register.
Old 30th August 2008
  #101
Gear Guru
 
AllAboutTone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr. torture View Post
All I care is that somebody there can run a cash register.
That is one of the worse things there, ever saw how many key strokes they have to make, call a manager, make more key strokes until you can get out of the store, that **** can go on for hrs at times. I hate those computers and software they use.
Old 30th August 2008
  #102
Gear Nut
 
WinterSun's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllAboutTone View Post
That is one of the worse things there, ever saw how many key strokes they have to make, call a manager, make more key strokes until you can get out of the store, that **** can go on for hrs at times. I hate those computers and software they use.
They call it "Green Screen". Some kind of ancient technology that GC is too stingy to upgrade. Since they'll hire almost anyone off the street, the salesmen are given clearance levels that act as a sort of babysitting system. If a guy is trying to access a certain part of the system he isn't cleared for, he has to call a manager who has that level. That's just a result of too many new employees to keep track of.

I worked for a GC for a few years out of college. Hated it. Their first priority is to train you sales techniques, then leave you to learn the knowledge by trial and error. Worst pay structure and turn over rate I've ever seen, and most of the employees are way over-worked. Not a healthy environment for anyone, so I often feel sorry for the employee when I hear stories like this. Not because they are right, but because I've been there.
Old 30th August 2008
  #103
Gear Nut
 
WinterSun's Avatar
 

BTW, the OP does seem like he has a superiority complex of sorts.....based mostly on his comments after his initial story
Old 30th August 2008
  #104
Re: "What type of data stream is it?"

Sure, the other stuff is a little ridiculous, but this is a HARD question! Most people reading this thread probably had NO idea what the answer was, myself included. Cut the guy some slack!
Old 30th August 2008
  #105
Lives for gear
 
azwun25's Avatar
 

There was another loooong thread about GC that had some wildly funny encounters. This one seems like the age-old battle of D-Bag customer meets underpaid salesguy. Nothing more. I definitely get bigger laughs from watching my cat chase a laser pointer.
Old 31st August 2008
  #106
Gear Addict
 
rvwainscott's Avatar
 

Get Ready for Best Buy

Greetings,

For those of you that think GC is bad, get ready for Best Buy. Best Buy has announced that they intend to start carrying music equipment like Les Pauls.


Read this:

The nation's largest consumer electronics retailer will announce Tuesday that it plans to open as many as 85 of the music centers inside its stores by the end of the year and could add even more locations in the future, executives told The Associated Press.

Each site will use about 2,500 square feet of retail space and include roughly 1,000 different products with well-known brand names such as Fender, Gibson, Drum Workshop and Roland.

"We're not just extending the shelf space in the store, we're creating a designated area specifically for this experience," said Kevin Balon, the company's vice president of musical instruments. "And we're trying to create an authentic and genuine musical instrument store look and feel inside of Best Buy."


Now, with amateur music being the 2nd largest hobby in the United States, it is no wonder that Best Buy is planning on selling musical gear. Now, does anyone here think that Best Buy will hire knowledgeable sales staff to help the average confused Joe? I doubt it.

In the end, GC is no different than Best Buy or even Home Depot. If you don't know what you need before going in then you have no business going in.

My daughter's boyfriend works for the Geek Squad at Best Buy. Best Buy charges 199/hr for his services and he knows very little about computers. Best Buy gives him a CD that he uses to try to fix customer computers - virus killers, drivers, etc. All he has to know how to do is put the disc in and push a button to start it. Beyond that, good luck having him fix your machine. He doesn't know the difference between an operating system and a keyboard.
Old 2nd September 2008
  #107
Lives for gear
 
Henchman's Avatar
You know, I have no idea what kind of data stream would come out of one of those mics, and I could give a rats-ass.

And grandstanding a GC employee is like challenging a down syndrome kid to a speliing contest.

Kinda sad.
Old 2nd September 2008
  #108
Lives for gear
 
d_fu's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by n8tron View Post
Dude, you already know the answer:
Can Anyone Explain USB Mic's Data Stream (AES 42-2001)
whats your deal?
This thread was about a guitar center encounter, that's what we are discussing. Now that you know the answer to your other question by asking it in a specific thread you come back here and berate us for not answering a question you never specifically asked in this thread?
It is indeed hilarious that the OP belittles a salesperson for not being able to answer a question he himself has no idea of...
Well, maybe it's sad, in fact.

In a way, the GC guy was right when he said "it's just audio"... The USB audio protocol certainly isn't AES-42... It will be some form of LPCM (USB natively only supports 16 bit @ 44/48k), packed into whatever USB requires to communicate. What's delivered to an audio application is really "just (digital) audio", and the app decides how to record it... This does not change the original data.
There is such a thing as a standard "USB audio protocol", and it's the same regardless of the exact nature of the USB device. The Blue is just a simple USB audio device with a microphone built around it, it's nothing even remotely similar to a digital mic using AES-42.

Let me quote something from the other thread, which I find quite hilarious, as it were. It shows how little you understand... Almost as bad as the idea of analog audio across USB (Sorry, Jim... heh):

Quote:
I know that the mic's converter is controlled by a protocol from the computer. The computer sends info that synchronizes the data rate so that it matches what the computer's system is running at as well as other stuff.
Great stuff... So the mic syncs to the CPU clock or what? And what's a "data rate"?



Daniel
Old 2nd September 2008
  #109
Lives for gear
 
travisbrown's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by rvwainscott View Post
Greetings,

For those of you that think GC is bad, get ready for Best Buy. Best Buy has announced that they intend to start carrying music equipment like Les Pauls.
See, this has come up in other threads and people deride it, but why? I generally don't need any help from the sales at the gear stores. I've already made my decision or have enough background to make informed decisions on the spot. Generally my question is if customers have had any issues with a particular piece of gear (warranty, compatibility, etc.) or what applications customers are using it for.

I see the BestBuy thing as a good thing. It will drive prices down to rock bottom. If you want sales people to be founts of knowledge on the minutiae of gear, you go to a pro sales shop and pay more. I'd rather do my own research and pay less. I mean, how much do you really need to ask about a piece of basic gear?
Old 3rd September 2008
  #110
Lives for gear
 
azwun25's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by travisbrown View Post
I see the BestBuy thing as a good thing. It will drive prices down to rock bottom. If you want sales people to be founts of knowledge on the minutiae of gear, you go to a pro sales shop and pay more. I'd rather do my own research and pay less. I mean, how much do you really need to ask about a piece of basic gear?
I don't see how it will drive prices down as they will have to adhere to MAP as any other retailer. The difference is a pro shop will advertise MAP and can come down from there, at a Best Buy, the price is the price.
Old 4th September 2008
  #111
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bcgood's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by joelpatterson View Post
"sure it's a fair trade. You give us the money... We give you the coffee!"
Quote:
Originally Posted by henchman View Post
you know, i have no idea what kind of data stream would come out of one of those mics, and i could give a rats-ass.

And grandstanding a gc employee is like challenging a down syndrome kid to a speliing contest.

Kinda sad.
ROTGL (Rolling on the Grass Laughing)

Old 4th September 2008
  #112
Lives for gear
 
travisbrown's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by azwun25 View Post
I don't see how it will drive prices down as they will have to adhere to MAP as any other retailer. The difference is a pro shop will advertise MAP and can come down from there, at a Best Buy, the price is the price.
There is no law that requires retailers to adhere to MAP, and while some distributors will try and use territorial exclusivity or other agreements to maintain MAP, what distributor is going to turn down BestBuy? You will see many exclusivity agreements terminated prematurely if BestBuy wants in.

And there's the inevitable effect of greater distribution, i.e. supply, and the resultant demand for competitive pricing, which may manifest not explicitly in lower product price but other value propositions for the consumer like cheaper financing, increased warranty, better return policies, etc.
Old 4th September 2008
  #113
Gear Nut
 

I work for GC, and I'm not surprised about your encounter. The fact is, when you live on $750-800 a month, answering questions about USB mics (which are considered to be the worst mics we sell...especially the MXLs..) gets a little mundane. He probably thought the original poster was some noob wanting to start a "home studio". Also, half of our job consists of putting out "POPs" or price tags. So every 2 weeks or so, we change 4000 price tags in the store to match whatever "sale" is going on. This means we stay in the store 3-4 hours after we close. The job sucks. Give the guy a break.

dfegadOP
Old 5th September 2008
  #114
Moderator
 
narcoman's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by geektanic08 View Post
I work for GC, and I'm not surprised about your encounter. The fact is, when you live on $750-800 a month, answering questions about USB mics (which are considered to be the worst mics we sell...especially the MXLs..) gets a little mundane. He probably thought the original poster was some noob wanting to start a "home studio". Also, half of our job consists of putting out "POPs" or price tags. So every 2 weeks or so, we change 4000 price tags in the store to match whatever "sale" is going on. This means we stay in the store 3-4 hours after we close. The job sucks. Give the guy a break.

dfegadOP

Well seeing as your main customers are "noobs starting home studios" perhaps the GC personnel ought to concentrate on that part of the market.
Old 8th September 2008
  #115
Gear Nut
 

Yes, maybe we will all get together and brainstorm at how we can better serve our awesome customers!

I don't care about who we market to. Just saying that the job sucks, so don't bash the people that work there so much. It's not like Guitar Center even checks credentials or gives you training of any kind. Yeah, you can take optional online "tests", but they consist of unanswerable questions like "is a $99 mic industry standard?". Thinking of the sm57 or 58 i said yes, but was incorrect on the test. So you pretty much just have to already know everything about everything in the department (recording, keyboards, dj, live, lighting) or people like the OP will get pissed at you and get on a message board and brag about how much more he knows than a person who has never had any training on the subject in his life.
Old 8th September 2008
  #116
Quote:
Originally Posted by geektanic08 View Post
Yes, maybe we will all get together and brainstorm at how we can better serve our awesome customers!

I don't care about who we market to. Just saying that the job sucks, so don't bash the people that work there so much. It's not like Guitar Center even checks credentials or gives you training of any kind. Yeah, you can take optional online "tests", but they consist of unanswerable questions like "is a $99 mic industry standard?". Thinking of the sm57 or 58 i said yes, but was incorrect on the test. So you pretty much just have to already know everything about everything in the department (recording, keyboards, dj, live, lighting) or people like the OP will get pissed at you and get on a message board and brag about how much more he knows than a person who has never had any training on the subject in his life.
I would LOVE to see that test in full!
Old 8th September 2008
  #117
Gear Nut
 

haha

dddbuttba loses

I bet he has gray hair

and a mustache
Old 8th September 2008
  #118
CDS
Lives for gear
 
CDS's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by evangelista View Post
I hate GC, but the original poster sounds like a ****ing ******bag with an unjustified superiority complex.
In defense of dbbubba,

This is why the music retail market is total muck right now. Why should'nt the clerk know the information he was looking for? I don't understand, If I go to buy a new car and ask about the engine, it is ok for the salesman to not know enough information that would persuade me to buy the car?

When I worked at Sam Ash Music (1990's 48th street NY, NY) you had to take a 3 page test with about 60 questions to get the 2nd interview. I remember missing 4 of the answers and only because of my religious reading of Mix, EQ, Keyboard, and HASR at the time, I knew all but 4 answers.

People would come in to the store looking for the latest reasons to blow a rent check.. and we would kindly give you all the technical info and knowledge you needed to feel like your life could not continue if you didn't walk out today with a piece of gear.

If my boss would have found out that a customer asked a question like the USB mic question and no one attempted to go find the 1 sheet white paper on it for the customer (at least), heads would roll.

When is the last time you walked into a music store (besides the guitar department) and found a demo going on.. when is the last time you witnessed a "department manager" doing a public mixing demo of ProTools? You dont!

I remember when I was 17 years old and visited that same Sam Ash location (years before I started working there) and I walked in to a manager playing a choir patch on the Ensoniq ASR-10.. He answered all my questions and listed off specs I would only come to understand years later. I can still remember the impact that visit had for me so much that the date is time-stamped in my life: September 28th 1992 at 7:30pm I walked out that store determined to be an ASR-10 owner. I started working full time late shifts at the first Bed Bath & Beyond store on 18th and 6ave after school making $3.75 an hour. That job was hell at the time and I was only getting 3 hours of sleep a night at 17 to save and get that keyboard. I skipped my high school senior trip, prom and graduation ceremony, took the money my parent saved for that and placed my job saving together and on March 26 1993, I paid $1950 cash for my ASR-10... 1 of the best and happiest days of my life.

And so the next time you go looking for a $10K PRS ax and you ask:

you - "What type of wood is used on this guitar?"
clerk - "The type that comes from trees dude"
you - "No, what kind of tree is the wood from?"
clerk - "The tree from the woods.. he he he"

Just give them your amex because obviously you have no right to know anything about the product.
Old 8th September 2008
  #119
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
The real problem guys are the ones that know just enough stuff that they don't feel like complete imbeciles any longer.
They know some stuff, but because they have mastered a few things they think they know EVERYTHING.
They can have real attitude.
I deal with these types on a constant basis doing live events.

These folks always seem ready to prove their knowledge and will challenge you.

I have seen "seasoned experts" make some really stupid statements and come up with some stupid conclusions.

My favorite was when I ran a staffing agency that hired show techs.
I had one guy that DEMANDED that he have his hourly rate raised.
I knew what he was capabale of and had him doing jobs and being paid accordingly.
He kept hammering at me and telling me how qualified he was.
I eventually had to tell him that graduating from The Art Institute's Audio Program two year prior didn't make him an expert.
I think I said, "Basically, you STARTED as a "pro" two years ago."
What mic's did you end up using?
Did the data stream really even matter?
Old 8th September 2008
  #120
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Why should'nt the clerk know the information he was looking for? I don't understand, If I go to buy a new car and ask about the engine, it is ok for the salesman to not know enough information that would persuade me to buy the car?
Sure, the salesman should know whatever he can to give you the information you'd need to make the decision to buy the car, but in this case it sounds like the sales guy knew about everything he should be expected to know about how this microphone works...it's still not clear why knowing what the data stream is called was important or relevant to the OP. I'd agree that knowing the type of wood a guitar is made out of would be basic knowledge, but knowing what type of data stream the USB microphone put out is not.
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