VOGONS


Retro Hardware Collecting rants

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Reply 780 of 903, by Thermalwrong

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RaverX wrote on 2020-09-19, 20:46:
Unknown_K wrote on 2020-09-19, 16:37:

All hobbies are like this. Those with enough money get whatever they want.

The good thing is that people with a lot of money will have expensive hobbies, like supercars, expensive watches, expensive art (paintings, etc). They don't compete with us for retro hardware, there might be very few exceptions.

Some of the prices I've seen for some of the more desirable retro stuff show that even old PC hardware is included in this list I think 😀 Go look up how much variants of the Roland MPU-401 sell for, I saw one with a daughterboard go for over £1000 the other day, madness.
It's so bad, I went out of my way to build up my own version of ab0tj's excellent hardMPU, but I'm stuck using my bulky Roland MT100 because MT-32s are just beyond my price range. I did try out Munt on a tablet the other day though and that worked so well it made me wonder why I'm bothering with old hardware.
I love fixing up junk like 386 motherboards though, there's not much competition there yet, thankfully.

Reply 781 of 903, by cyclone3d

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imi wrote on 2020-09-19, 23:28:

indeed, I can't even count how many parts I've found on ebay.com for cheap that I'd have gotten in a heartbeat... but shipping to EU usually costs multiple times what the item is worth and add to that customs and taxes on top and it just becomes entirely unreasonable ^^

but yeah, same is true the other way too most likely for other parts, though for some reason shipping from EU to US seems to be a lot cheaper than the other way round.

I'm really going to miss having easy access to the UK market.

Shipping from the US to EU up to 2 pounds costs $24.50.

Some people probably tack packaging, etc. fees on top of that.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header
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Reply 782 of 903, by Horun

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cyclone3d wrote on 2020-09-20, 01:34:

Shipping from the US to EU up to 2 pounds costs $24.50.

Some people probably tack packaging, etc. fees on top of that.

And that price is retarded IMHO. Have had motherboards shipped to me from outside USA from 4 different areas outside North America for less than $17 each, one was only $7, one was $8, the others were more.
Had I/O backplates and Dallas RTC shipped from Denmark to me for less than $2 each shipment but to ship one Dallas RTC to Canada (going only 400 miles from me) cost me over $8.
Yes I have a shipping+customs+tax rant on shipping !!!

Hate posting a reply and have to edit it because it made no sense 😁 First computer was an IBM 3270 workstation with CGA monitor. 🤣 Second computer a 286 12Mhz with real IDE drive ! After that came 386, 486, Pentium, P.Pro and everything after....

Reply 783 of 903, by schmatzler

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cyclone3d wrote on 2020-09-20, 01:34:

Shipping from the US to EU up to 2 pounds costs $24.50.

And if you ship with DHL Express you always have to pay import taxes on top of that, too - which is annoying as hell, because packages are getting stuck in tax limbo in some warehouse for ages until tired and underpaid people ("customs officials") put their stamp onto it so they can be delivered.

Here in Germany we currently have a value limit of 22€ for import taxes. If the item is cheaper than that you don't have to pay taxes. But they're planning to remove this limit next year, so even if I buy some microchips for 5$ I will need to pay taxes on top of that. Modern highway robbery at its finest.

The politicians justify that by saying that they want to push local manufacturers and businesses, but that's plain stupid. Old things are not being made anymore and sometimes the local prices are ridiculous.
Example: I needed a new screen for my modern Lenovo notebook a while ago. Price on Aliexpress: 100$. Price in Germany: >500$. Even with taxes importing the screen was still much cheaper than paying that ridiculous amount of money to a local business.

And then they're screaming that the Chinese market is killing our electronic shops. No, they're killing themselves by ripping of their customers. We have two big electronic chains here (Saturn and MediaMarkt) and they're selling cheap cables like they're made of gold or something. It's become kind of a meme here. "Hey, 'ya wanna go to Saturn and get me an HDMI cable for 30 bucks?"

Reply 784 of 903, by Horun

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schmatzler wrote on 2020-09-20, 02:03:
And if you ship with DHL Express you always have to pay import taxes on top of that, too - which is annoying as hell, because pa […]
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cyclone3d wrote on 2020-09-20, 01:34:

Shipping from the US to EU up to 2 pounds costs $24.50.

And if you ship with DHL Express you always have to pay import taxes on top of that, too - which is annoying as hell, because packages are getting stuck in tax limbo in some warehouse for ages until tired and underpaid people ("customs officials") put their stamp onto it so they can be delivered.

Here in Germany we currently have a value limit of 22€ for import taxes. If the item is cheaper than that you don't have to pay taxes. But they're planning to remove this limit next year, so even if I buy some microchips for 5$ I will need to pay taxes on top of that. Modern highway robbery at its finest.

The politicians justify that by saying that they want to push local manufacturers and businesses, but that's plain stupid. Old things are not being made anymore and sometimes the local prices are ridiculous.
Example: I needed a new screen for my modern Lenovo notebook a while ago. Price on Aliexpress: 100$. Price in Germany: >500$. Even with taxes importing the screen was still much cheaper than paying that ridiculous amount of money to a local business.

And then they're screaming that the Chinese market is killing our electronic shops. No, they're killing themselves by ripping of their customers. We have two big electronic chains here (Saturn and MediaMarkt) and they're selling cheap cables like they're made of gold or something. It's become kind of a meme here. "Hey, 'ya wanna go to Saturn and get me an HDMI cable for 30 bucks?"

Thank you ! That is the "local" price "fixing" referred to in my earlier post and the shipping charges being inflated too. Thanks !

Hate posting a reply and have to edit it because it made no sense 😁 First computer was an IBM 3270 workstation with CGA monitor. 🤣 Second computer a 286 12Mhz with real IDE drive ! After that came 386, 486, Pentium, P.Pro and everything after....

Reply 785 of 903, by cyclone3d

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schmatzler wrote on 2020-09-20, 02:03:
And if you ship with DHL Express you always have to pay import taxes on top of that, too - which is annoying as hell, because pa […]
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cyclone3d wrote on 2020-09-20, 01:34:

Shipping from the US to EU up to 2 pounds costs $24.50.

And if you ship with DHL Express you always have to pay import taxes on top of that, too - which is annoying as hell, because packages are getting stuck in tax limbo in some warehouse for ages until tired and underpaid people ("customs officials") put their stamp onto it so they can be delivered.

Here in Germany we currently have a value limit of 22€ for import taxes. If the item is cheaper than that you don't have to pay taxes. But they're planning to remove this limit next year, so even if I buy some microchips for 5$ I will need to pay taxes on top of that. Modern highway robbery at its finest.

The politicians justify that by saying that they want to push local manufacturers and businesses, but that's plain stupid. Old things are not being made anymore and sometimes the local prices are ridiculous.
Example: I needed a new screen for my modern Lenovo notebook a while ago. Price on Aliexpress: 100$. Price in Germany: >500$. Even with taxes importing the screen was still much cheaper than paying that ridiculous amount of money to a local business.

And then they're screaming that the Chinese market is killing our electronic shops. No, they're killing themselves by ripping of their customers. We have two big electronic chains here (Saturn and MediaMarkt) and they're selling cheap cables like they're made of gold or something. It's become kind of a meme here. "Hey, 'ya wanna go to Saturn and get me an HDMI cable for 30 bucks?"

Hey.. that's the same as the big-box stores here in the USA as far as cables go.... It is stupid.. but people "gotta have it now!" so they pay these stupid prices instead of ordering from places like Amazon.com or Monoprice.com or even eBay.

When I worked at a computer store around the year 2000, we ordered all our cables from Cables Unlimited. We had a 100% markup on most of our cables and they still sold for about 25% of what the other bigger stores sold their cables for. We sold sooooooo many cables.

Same for prices for some newer computer replacement parts, especially laptop parts from the laptop mfg / retailer. Buy it from them and you are easily paying 3-4x as much as if you buy from somewhere else.

Yamaha YMF modified setupds and drivers
Yamaha XG resource repository - updated November 27, 2018
Yamaha YMF7x4 Guide
AW744L II - YMF744 - AOpen Cobra Sound Card - Install SB-Link Header
Epstein didn't kill himself

Reply 786 of 903, by Miphee

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badmojo wrote on 2020-09-19, 22:59:

It is disappointing when "people" don't conform to the rules you made up but now that you've accepted that they never will, you can stop whining about it - yay!

Dream on, pal. 😁

Reply 787 of 903, by Miphee

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Big Pink wrote on 2020-09-19, 22:44:

A responsibility to keep prices low? I thought this was a hobby, not a cartel.

It's not a problem until it is YOUR problem. Simple. People are always like that.

Reply 788 of 903, by Miphee

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imi wrote on 2020-09-19, 19:48:

let me say this again, I don't disagree that this is a problem, but I strongly disagree that anyone here is actually contributing to it at any appreciable capacity.

Why?

Reply 789 of 903, by Miphee

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RaverX wrote on 2020-09-19, 20:46:

The good thing is that people with a lot of money will have expensive hobbies, like supercars, expensive watches, expensive art (paintings, etc). They don't compete with us for retro hardware, there might be very few exceptions.

There is a difference between a billionare and a guy with a good job and a 6 figure income. The latter is more common than you think and it's impossible to tell who's wealthy here and who isn't.

Reply 790 of 903, by darry

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Miphee wrote on 2020-09-20, 08:46:
RaverX wrote on 2020-09-19, 20:46:

The good thing is that people with a lot of money will have expensive hobbies, like supercars, expensive watches, expensive art (paintings, etc). They don't compete with us for retro hardware, there might be very few exceptions.

There is a difference between a billionare and a guy with a good job and a 6 figure income. The latter is more common than you think and it's impossible to tell who's wealthy here and who isn't.

Another variable is expenses. Somebody with no mortgage, spouse, kids, student loans, car loan, etc and who lives with his or her parents (increasingly common these days), will not need a 6 figure income to be able to afford lots of subjectively overpriced retro stuff .

Reply 791 of 903, by imi

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schmatzler wrote on 2020-09-20, 02:03:

Here in Germany we currently have a value limit of 22€ for import taxes. If the item is cheaper than that you don't have to pay taxes. But they're planning to remove this limit next year, so even if I buy some microchips for 5$ I will need to pay taxes on top of that. Modern highway robbery at its finest.

taxes aren't really the issue imho, it's the customs handling fee that's going to really hit hard on lower priced items, at least in germany you can do customs yourself if you desire afaik, here we're forced to let the postal office or a courier do the job for us and they always charge a fee of at least €10.

Miphee wrote on 2020-09-20, 08:41:
imi wrote on 2020-09-19, 19:48:

let me say this again, I don't disagree that this is a problem, but I strongly disagree that anyone here is actually contributing to it at any appreciable capacity.

Why?

because I can't really see any evidence supporting this claim, and even if there might be a few cases here and there it still wouldn't make it "most of us".

Reply 792 of 903, by Miphee

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imi wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:12:

because I can't really see any evidence supporting this claim, and even if there might be a few cases here and there it still wouldn't make it "most of us".

So you keep concentrating on the wordplay. Us - most of us, not the issue itself.
But it only takes a few to spoil the bunch.
What do you think is the reason for the constant price increase?

Reply 793 of 903, by Tetrium

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imi wrote on 2020-09-19, 19:48:
it's not "us" nor is it "most of us" imho, also idk what you're on about, but nobody has been writing a wall of text denying the […]
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Miphee wrote on 2020-09-19, 19:22:

No, MOST of us, that excludes some. Big difference. And what happened? People who claim they are not part of the problem started to write a wall of text denying the problem. It indicates a guilty conscience being present otherwise they should just keep quiet. It's not about them, right?

it's not "us" nor is it "most of us" imho, also idk what you're on about, but nobody has been writing a wall of text denying the problem, there have just been a few posts at all... and none denied it?

why would we keep quiet discussing something you brought up? that's literally what a forum is about, I really don't get what you're trying to achieve here.
this sure affects all of us, so why not discuss it - this thread is literally called collecting rants, and that's a very ranty topic about collecting :p

let me say this again, I don't disagree that this is a problem, but I strongly disagree that anyone here is actually contributing to it at any appreciable capacity.
if you believe otherwise, that is fine too, but try to be more upfront about it, saying "it's you" or even just "most of you" is just bad attitude imho, and of course you can expect some pushback with such a blanket "accusation", you literally made it "about them".

and of course I can only talk about my own behavior because idk how other people approach this, I explained how I try to not overpay stuff and in turn increase prices, I don't know how much more I can do.

He is flamebaiting/trolling.

The wiki has a pretty good writeup of what that means:

In Internet slang, a troll is a person who starts flame wars or intentionally upsets people on the Internet by posting inflammatory and digressive,[1] extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community (such as a newsgroup, forum, chat room, or blog) with the intent of provoking readers into displaying emotional responses[2] and normalizing tangential discussion,[3] either for the troll's amusement or a specific gain.

which he did with his emotionally laden remarks like the one with the "Yes, YOU are at fault! YOU buy for too much YOU want it now now now!" remark (it wasn't exactly like how I write it here, but I think you'll get the picture) and his remarks about walls of text in our defense blah blah and even though people like you, Darry, Soda and Warlord (just to name a few) remain calm, he tries from the left to bait people into getting offended and it that doesn't work he tries it from the right.

He also conveniently leaves out the true reason(s) of rising prices, especially anything that has to do with scalpers. I'll explain.

Back when I was still actively collecting, cards like S3 Virge and Geforce MX were worth maybe €1. But scalpers were already selling stuff like generic Compaq Virges for like $199 on Ebay. And also stuff like HP branded generic 3.5in floppy drives for, lets say, $139. And I mean with a standard floppy drive connector. The exact same drives which were basically sold by the kilo at PC-Dumpdag (RIP, got so many good deals from there before it ceased to exist), totally common junk was sold by these scalpers for really just idiotic prices. They would prefer to keep offering their stuff (which was often just junk at that point) for stupidly high prices. And this was before the whole retro craze had lifted off and old PC parts were usually seen as junk by anyone except the relatively few people who were already involved. And even then only for a couple items like for instance Roland stuff.

I am fairly sure that the wiki probably also has a wiki page or 2 on how marketing works, and in particular stuff like hyping and bubble economy (and how to create such an economy). Also a lot of psychology goes into this, it is really fairly interesting a subject, actually.

Whats missing in your collections?
My retro rigs (old topic)
Interesting Vogons threads (links to Vogonswiki)
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Reply 794 of 903, by Miphee

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darry wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:01:

Another variable is expenses. Somebody with no mortgage, spouse, kids, student loans, car loan, etc and who lives with his or her parents (increasingly common these days), will not need a 6 figure income to be able to afford lots of subjectively overpriced retro stuff .

Indeed. But if I have more expendable income does that mean that I need to spend more for the same item so I can get it more quickly?
And if I spend more money on the item, will it prompt other sellers to increase their prices as well, thus causing a global price increase on similar items and will that cause resellers to buy up most of those items and sell them at an inflated price?

Reply 795 of 903, by imi

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Miphee wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:19:
imi wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:12:

because I can't really see any evidence supporting this claim, and even if there might be a few cases here and there it still wouldn't make it "most of us".

What do you think is the reason for the constant price increase?

it has already been discussed in this thread many times...
increased popularity of retro hardware due to youtubers and other internet publications keeping up the hype, not saying at all they're at "fault" here, I do thouroughly enjoy that content as well, but I can't deny this obviously has an effect on prices.
also the ever decreasing supply of certain things, things that just pop up for sale way less often than they used to, in contrast to the previous point with a lot more people wanting it... supply and demand, while I absolutely hate this principle I also can't deny the economic reality of it existing.

and yes, of course scalpers, that just out of the gate ask for ridiculous prices anyways, and buy up what little supply is left of certain things for cheap (or even not so cheap) and try to make a profit off it.
if you look around ebay there's certain sellers who do nothing but buy up any amiga they can find for example only to resell it for more again, or worse - gut it and sell the parts, this obviously keeps most people looking for a bargain out of the loop.

on the other hand I don't really fault anyone for paying a little more than what something used to cost to get the chance to get their hands on something they really want (it's not about "I want it now" it's when the opportunity arises).

Last edited by imi on 2020-09-20, 09:36. Edited 2 times in total.

Reply 796 of 903, by Miphee

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imi wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:31:

it has already been discussed in this thread many times...
increased popularity of retro hardware due to youtubers and other internet publications keeping up the hype, not saying at all they're at "fault" here, I do thouroughly enjoy that content as well, but I can't deny this obviously has an effect on prices.
also the ever decreasing supply of certain things, things that just pop up for sale way less often than they used to, in contrast to the previous point with a lot more people wanting it... supply and demand, while I absolutely hate this principle I also can't deny the economic reality of it existing.

Then why is it so difficult to accept that paying more for the same item contributes to the problem? I'm attacked and namecalled because I highlighted this particular phenomenon. When I wrote that resellers are also contributing to this by buying up everything everyone agreed with me. That's the hypocrisy. People only accept things that don't shine a light on their own faults. I also contributed to this when I wanted to buy an overpriced Voodoo2. I wouldn't normally pay that much but gave in to the 3Dfx hype and I wanted THAT card immediately. That's contributing to the problem.
No, not just millionares but average collectors too. You don't have to be rich to do this.

Reply 797 of 903, by Tetrium

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darry wrote on 2020-09-19, 17:14:
Unknown_K wrote on 2020-09-19, 16:37:
Doornkaat wrote on 2020-09-19, 13:05:
Why are you hating, dude? I mean, I'm not paying crazy prices either. I can't even afford to and if I could I would probably sti […]
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Why are you hating, dude?
I mean, I'm not paying crazy prices either. I can't even afford to and if I could I would probably still not do it because I don't value those things that much.
Instead I spend a lot of time browsing/watching various sources for retro parts and try to be the first buyer. I actually kind of enjoy this 'hunt'. And I definitely spend too much time with it. 😁
But if there's somebody with more money and less time than me why hate him for using the resource that's better avaliable to him to achieve the same goal?

I've never heard anyone say that people who aren't willing to spend lots of money on old hardware and would rather wait (and maybe even risk never getting a certain piece) don't really appreciate it and were somehow in the wrong.
So why would somebody be wrong for appreciating this stuff enough to pay a lot of money for it?

All hobbies are like this. Those with enough money get whatever they want. I am sure the people who buy Apple 1's don't even use them.

The hobby is still cheap if you look for deals and don't start hoarding. When I started collecting I was getting one of everything I wanted and some spares because it was fun and cheap because nobody else wanted it. Times change.

I think that trying to have spares (at least one, price allowing) for what you actually use is still important, especially if prices are on the rise . I did say "what you use", as getting one or more of everything that tickles your fancy is not feasible in the long run because of space constraints, costs notwithstanding, unless you are a rich collector with plenty of space (not my case). Times do change, but rising/high prices can force us to make choices that most of us should have been making even when prices were low, IMHO .

I think this assessment is probably correct. Back when I was really actively collecting, I weighted my options on items even though prices were much lower back then. I'd often pass great deals because I didn't think I needed it enough, getting only the stuff that I really wanted for whatever reason and rarely paying €50 or more for a single item.

If prices rise, then choices have to be made with more thought going into them. And that makes perfect sense.

Back when the scalpers (like the ones I've written about in my previous reply) were asking insane amounts of money for common junker items, they were already talked about on forums such as Vogons and others and the concensus back then was that they were probably preying on either the oblivious ones or the people that were looking for those exact spare parts while getting fooled by the seller seeming to be a professional (I perhaps left out some stuff, feel free to fill in the gaps).

There were also sellers back then (just as they are still a thing today) that find some old items which they have no clue what it is except that it is old, they go look on ebay and see the insane prices and then go sell that item for maybe 90% of that price, as if that was some kind of good deal or something.
At some point it gets hyped, causing a force (sorry, bad english here) that wants to raise prices even if items can still be gotten for cheap everywhere like Virges and GF MXs and Pentium MMX 166. It's like a bubble that is trying to inflate itself but it cannot as there are still too many holes which prevents it from ballooning too much, with the holes being the sales of common items for what we could consider normal prices like €3 for a generic Virge or something.

At some point (as things go with stuff that isn't manufactured anymore), the amount of holes will start to decrease and the hype balloon (which has already been there for quite a while perhaps) will finally start to inflate. And this balloon will always be a force that will artificially increase prices on top of any natural price increase. It only wants to grow so the people that let it can benefit from it. Because often the people that benefit the most from artificially inflated prices are not the ones that are actually handling the stuff. As there people are usually net buyers, so higher prices are not to their benefit. Its the scalpers that are in part responsible for the price increase and they are the oens that will benefit the most from this.

The wiki mentions this on scalping:

Scalping, when used in reference to trading in securities, commodities and foreign exchange, may refer to

a legitimate method of arbitrage of small price gaps created by the bid–ask spread.
a fraudulent form of market manipulation

and

Scalping is the shortest time frame in trading and it exploits small changes in currency prices.[1] Scalpers attempt to act like traditional market makers or specialists. To make the spread means to buy at the Bid price and sell at the Ask price, in order to gain the bid/ask difference. This procedure allows for profit even when the bid and ask don't move at all, as long as there are traders who are willing to take market prices. It normally involves establishing and liquidating a position quickly, usually within minutes or even seconds.

.
Market manipulation wiki mentions this:

Market manipulation is a type of market abuse where there is a deliberate attempt to interfere with the free and fair operation of the market and create artificial, false or misleading appearances with respect to the price of, or market for, a product, security, commodity or currency.[1]

which is exactly what we are seeing with the sellers that have always had insanely high asking prices.
Another way in which they manipulate the market is by buying up all kinds of low prices offers, purely with the intend to sell it at a profit.
The normal consumers (which scalpers are not, they only scalp and don't actually consume the stuff like most of us here do) are left out of getting the Virge for €3 and will basically have to now pay €139 for that exact same Virge a couple days later on ebay. This is probably by far the most important reason why prices for these parts are going up.

Now these examples are written a bit more extremely perhaps, but purely with the purpose to provide clarity of one of the reasons why prices are going up. There are many more causes for rising prices though, part of which is that these parts are not made anymore and that parts can go kaput or get recycled before a retro computer hobbyist is able to intercept it.

Whats missing in your collections?
My retro rigs (old topic)
Interesting Vogons threads (links to Vogonswiki)
Report spammers here!

Reply 798 of 903, by Tetrium

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imi wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:31:
it has already been discussed in this thread many times... increased popularity of retro hardware due to youtubers and other int […]
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Miphee wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:19:
imi wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:12:

because I can't really see any evidence supporting this claim, and even if there might be a few cases here and there it still wouldn't make it "most of us".

What do you think is the reason for the constant price increase?

it has already been discussed in this thread many times...
increased popularity of retro hardware due to youtubers and other internet publications keeping up the hype, not saying at all they're at "fault" here, I do thouroughly enjoy that content as well, but I can't deny this obviously has an effect on prices.
also the ever decreasing supply of certain things, things that just pop up for sale way less often than they used to, in contrast to the previous point with a lot more people wanting it... supply and demand, while I absolutely hate this principle I also can't deny the economic reality of it existing.

and yes, of course scalpers, that just out of the gate ask for ridiculous prices anyways, and buy up what little supply is left of certain things for cheap (or even not so cheap) and try to make a profit off it.
if you look around ebay there's certain sellers who do nothing but buy up any amiga they can find for example only to resell it for more again, or worse - gut it and sell the parts, this obviously keeps most people looking for a bargain out of the loop.

on the other hand I don't really fault anyone for paying a little more than what something used to cost to get the chance to get their hands on something they really want (it's not about "I want it now" it's when the opportunity arises).

I tend to agree with you here.

The scalpers who are buying stuff up front for cheaper and make a living out of that and exclusively that (that example of the amiga is kinda heartbreaking btw), I doubt any normal hobbyist will agree that destroying parts to resell purely because of $$$$ in his eyes is not a good influence on any market. They are parasiting from it.
But regardless of how much influence scalpers have on any given hobby, there are indeed many more reasons why prices increase at some point, most of which have already been mentioned by now.

Personally I see these scalpers as having a worse impact on any hobby then, for instance, people who post entertaining and often also good videos about the hobby on youtube. I think it's kinda hard to argue that someone who purposefully destroys his own product is to the detriment of his own consumers, but not necessarily to himself.

I think I want to create a list of the reasons why prices increase now 🤣

- Supply and Demand will probably be the axis how how this works.
- Availability of parts becoming older will decrease as parts become more scarce due to parts physically becoming inoperable (which probably doesn't have as much of a profound effect on people who collect purely for their display cabinet). So the total number of working parts will probably see a steady decrease overall.
- Scalpers who artificially increase prices (and whoes goal may actually be to inflate prices by as much as possible regardless of how this affects their own consumers).
- Demand of certain parts which largely is a matter of how popular an item is. 3DFX is such an example, with it not being a rare item per se but people going crazy about it.
- Sites like Ebay and postage cost will probably also help increase prices, even if only locally.
- The number of hobbyists is also a factor, obviously. Especially the ones who are actively making the purchases and sales. Older hobbyists will probably either not spend as much or be more picky since they already got most of what they wanted and are usually much better informed.

So what generally happens will kinda look like this (and this is very generally speaking btw, without the other influences which I will describe later) :
New PC part is being produced and used. Few years later it has gotten to the territory of being surpassed by newer parts and prices will drop until there's very few NOS offers remaining, after which those prices will often settle for a long while while the second hand market starts picking up the pace and offer for beneath those prices.
As the part is becoming more and more obsolete and more people are upgrading or trying to get rid of excess stock, prices will get to their lowest point. This point may (and often does) remain stable for multiple years actually.
At some point offers will decrease as people have gotten rid of their obsolete parts and fewer people find their old rigs in their attics when doing some major cleaning etc. Demand will probably still remain fairly low at this point, so prices will often remain very low.
This will only change once there's hardly any offer of said item left with also only a very small number of takers and this is what I feel like was kinda happening when I was very active 10 to 15 years ago. Hardware ages much faster back then, so prices would fall more quickly too and sellers were keen to sell ASAP before prices would drop even lower by tomorrow, so to say.

There were arguably fewer PC hobbyists back then and this wasn't a single group, but spread out across multiple interests like amiga, IBM, MAC and all the other PC-noncompatibles.

Now even though the total amount of items was dropping a lot back then, there were so many parts compared to the number of potential buyers that prices would remain low for years on end. There were of course always people trying to sell for more (not exclusively scalpers, but also people who were just plain ignorant or perhaps also simply fraudulent by purposefully selling defective lots).

Back then some parts would obviously be more wanted, and this would typically be the high end stuff like the fastest PCI graphics card or the best CPU for any given socket or the largest (or fastest) memory module of any give type. This is the stuff that was generally more sought after. The more lowend stuff was generally speaking up for grabs (for instance AGP 2x cards would usually be cheap regardless of highend or not, because AGP 4x cards had more onboard memory and were not as ancient, thus seemed more interesting to buy for consumers on a budget).

Some items were already kinda rare though, but those were the exception. Often these items were the actual exception, like certain sound cards or things like Voodoo 5 6000).

I kinda lost track at this point of writing 🤣, but there were several causes as to why prices have gone up from this point onward. It mostly has to do with availability drying up (old stocks get sold out, people stop finding old dusty rigs in their attics and scrapyards start refusing people to browse, recycling laws which stops people tossing their old computers onto the streets which make access less accessible, the start of large companies starting to take more and more of the profits, this hobby becoming more high profile in which retro has become more cool instead of it being mostly a toy for the exception who found the hobby because computers interested him and it was very easy to acquire the parts that he wanted.
The hypes have mostly influenced prices with certain specific things, like 3DFX, ss7 and certain sound cards or certain brands even though these items are probably not as rare as the prices may seem to indicate at first.
486 stuff has not gone up as much as I'd first expect, perhaps due to ss7 time machines having become a thing but also because it circumvents certain issues like finding AT stuff. Same thing with old harddrives, as we now have things like flash cards, SSDs and adapters, so the old harddrives (even though they may have decreased a lot in numbers offered partially due to them breaking down and being relatively fragile) have probably not gone up as much in price as one might have expected them to go up in price otherwise.

I'm pretty sure I have left out some significant bits 😜

Whats missing in your collections?
My retro rigs (old topic)
Interesting Vogons threads (links to Vogonswiki)
Report spammers here!

Reply 799 of 903, by Quadrachewski

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Miphee wrote on 2020-09-20, 09:49:

That's contributing to the problem.
No, not just millionares but average collectors too. You don't have to be rich to do this.

Let's just say that its caused by many factors, overpaying included. If guys continuously overpay then sllers will ask more that's certain.