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Mystery Shopper: Dawsons Music, Reading

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Mystery Shopper: Dawsons Music, Reading

Dawsons Music is a nationwide music store chain, specialising in a range of guitars, keyboards, amps and accessories.

…I’m definitely going to shop there again…

The Reading store is situated very close to the central railway station; expect to walk 5-10 minute maximum. If you’re driving into Reading (good luck), there’s ample parking off the main Caversham Road.

This particular store is large, well lit, clean and has a good feel to the place. This should improve over coming weeks too, as the summer of 2012 finds the Reading store undergoing a hefty refit. Talking to the staff members, they are very excited by the prospects of working in a very slick looking instrument store.

The guitar department is fairly extensive. Walking in from the car park entrance, a large array of electric guitars can be seen wall mounted reaching around from the store entrance, across to the adjacent wall in the showroom.

The floor consists of a wide range of amplifiers, featuring the usual suspects of brands (Marshall, Fender etc). But what I particularly like about their range of amps is that they seem to stock a very full range, catering for a variety of tonal palettes.

The somewhat “standard-but-quirky” approach to their stock doesn’t just stop at their amp selection. The electric guitar range is very impressive – I haven’t been to a guitar shop for some time where I literally wanted to walk out with at least three or four electric guitars in hand.

Their Gibson range is one of the best I’ve seen; a fine selection of Les Paul’s, ES-335’s, SG’s… you name it, they’ve got it.

I was visiting the store on a particular mission to purchase a reverb pedal. I’ve been thinking for a while my amps could do with a dash of ‘verb now and again. After lusting over a stunning cherry Gibson ES-335, I was soon approached by a helpful assistant who proceeded to source the reverb pedal of my choice, set me up with a Gibson 60’s reissue SG and Marshall Class 5, and left me alone to play for a few minutes.

What’s more, the store priced matched the item for me too, which was great.

Unfortunately, when I tried the pedal through my rig at home, it wasn’t to my tastes (it seemed to wash-out the midrange. This is something that would’ve been hard to gauge in store), and to Dawson’s credit, in this instance, they refunded me.

Summary

I’m not too sure what the rest of the Dawsons chain is like, or how the standard of service can be rated, but if it’s anything like the level of service like I experienced this week in their Reading store, you’ll be more than happy.

I’ve often been sceptical of music “supermarkets”, that sell a wide range of musical instruments and accessories. I tend to have a somewhat prejudice attitude with my thoughts leaning towards “jack of all trades, master of none” mentality. But Dawsons in Reading didn’t fit that mould in my experience. Their range of guitar equipment was very good and their service was responsive, friendly and welcoming.

I’m definitely going to shop there again.

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About the author:

Sam is passionate about talking all things guitar related and started GuitarJar.co.uk to help encourage all guitarists in their guitar playing journey.

1 Comment

  • I tend to have a somewhat prejudice attitude with my thoughts leaning towards “jack of all trades, master of none” mentality. But Dawsons in Reading didn’t fit that mould in my experience. Their range of guitar equipment was very good and their service was responsive.

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