Synth prices and inflation

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Ashe37 » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:27 pm

*locks thread*
*Bans 3 people*

J/k :P

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Alex E » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:38 pm

So when can I start openly making fun of people for having 35+ of the same synthesizer?
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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by CZ Rider » Thu Mar 07, 2013 11:41 pm

I thought for years, analog mono synthesizers were undervalued. Almost like they were put in the same catagory as consumer electronics. It's old, and obsolete, so it shouldn't be worth much attitude. This actually started back when the DX-7 was introduced. When working musicians went to sell their older gear to help fund the expensive DX-7, there was not much demand for synthesizers like a Minimoog. So the prices back then went down and hit rock bottom. I know I purchased a Minimoog back in 1986 for $350 and the person selling needed money for a DX-7. No one wanted to pay more for a synthesizer that only played one note, had no programable memory, and could go out of tune. The high cost of these new synthesizers in the mid 80's at the time, were somewhat responsable for all those synthesizers hitting rock bottom. And this is where those devalued prices stayed 'till the late 90's.
And most of those 70's and 80's synthesizers are still not worth what people paid for them when they were new, and they may never be. An ARP Omni street price was about $1495 in 1978, more than an Osyssey. Alowing for inflation that would be $5280.00 in today's dollars. Probably the same for a DX-7, not sure what the street price was, but nowhere near that worth today. Money pits!
So next time you see a CS-80 for $12,000, just remember that is still less that one would have cost new. The people that paid for them in the late 70's were not collectors, but working musicians, and synthesizers were very expensive back then. Today synthesizers are in the reach of anyone who wants one.

condit79 wrote: And there wouldn't have been such a heated discussion about IDOW if they hadn't come off as controversial with some of the trailer cuts, and as with all things, any press is good press, so job well done. Stopping the conversation only just made the thread that much more irrelevant and a place for them to plug something else they're selling... maybe that part where they talk about selling a module should be moved to a the "for sale" forum while we're being all OCD.
That's funny and a very good point :lol: . Someone who contributed nothing to VSE, joins VSE, starts a thread just to sell a product. Usually these guys get shot down immediately. Now they are pushing module sales. Limited edition, but it now! Give me your money! ............Yeah right! :roll:

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by pflosi » Fri Mar 08, 2013 10:27 am

Just for the record - Solvent didn't start the IDOW thread (GuyaGuy did), he came here after the flame war broke out (so did Paul and STG - I'm actually happy to see these guys over here). And the BatteryAcid module was a limited edition module by hexinverter.net that you *could* get with your IDOW edition *if* you wanted to. Nothing wrong with posting all that here IMO. Especially since I asked for it.

Apart from that, now where's that flame war now when I intentionally want to start one? Everyone's agreeing in here, that's lame. nvbrkr, where are you at? :lol: ;)

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by sourwookie » Sat Mar 09, 2013 3:42 pm

The Dept. Of Labor Consumer Price Index is a great way to figure the value of something versus inflation.

At work, when an old timer complains about the price of a USA Strat today pointing out that they paid $250 for theirs in 1974 and how dare they charge $1175 for one today I can quickly plug in those numbers and see that $250 in 1974 is about $1167 in 2013 dolars, so no, the price of a Fender USA Strat hasn't really budged at all in nearly 40 years.

Plugging these numbers in for the MS-20 mini shows that $599 2013 dollars is about $169 1978 dollars. I doubt MS-20's had such a low price tag then, so there's an example of something that has likely decreased in price.

EDIT: According to Wikipedia, the original MS-20 had a sale price of $750, meaning $2648 in 2013 dollars. Ouch.

(and what's this "IDOW" thread that's got everyone so hot and bothered?)

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by analoglsd » Sat Mar 09, 2013 10:46 pm

sourwookie wrote:The Dept. Of Labor Consumer Price Index is a great way to figure the value of something versus inflation.

At work, when an old timer complains about the price of a USA Strat today pointing out that they paid $250 for theirs in 1974 and how dare they charge $1175 for one today I can quickly plug in those numbers and see that $250 in 1974 is about $1167 in 2013 dolars, so no, the price of a Fender USA Strat hasn't really budged at all in nearly 40 years.

Plugging these numbers in for the MS-20 mini shows that $599 2013 dollars is about $169 1978 dollars. I doubt MS-20's had such a low price tag then, so there's an example of something that has likely decreased in price.

EDIT: According to Wikipedia, the original MS-20 had a sale price of $750, meaning $2648 in 2013 dollars. Ouch.

(and what's this "IDOW" thread that's got everyone so hot and bothered?)

Thanks for the relevant post.
If you want to browse through a few pages of not-so-relevant posts the IDOW thread is here: http://www.vintagesynth.com/forum/viewt ... =1&t=70865

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Ashe37 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 8:22 am

sourwookie wrote:The Dept. Of Labor Consumer Price Index is a great way to figure the value of something versus inflation.

No, it isn't. In the 1990s, milk, bread and petroleum products (i.e. gasoline) were specifically removed from the CPI in order to provide the appearance of a lack of inflation. The results from after that change are skewed (and also one reason they can claim there is no inflation now...)

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Synthetech » Sun Mar 10, 2013 3:32 pm

Ashe37 wrote:

No, it isn't. In the 1990s, milk, bread and petroleum products (i.e. gasoline) were specifically removed from the CPI in order to provide the appearance of a lack of inflation. The results from after that change are skewed (and also one reason they can claim there is no inflation now...)

I agree the calculations in today's world are WAY off.

Specifically in the average wage vs. cost of living. On average, wages made today are the same as they were 10 years ago!
That is F'd up beyond all reason! Yet employers get away with it since there are so little jobs on the market right now... it's take it or leave it.

So some job that paid $10/hr in 2003 still pays $10/hr today!
Gas was averaging ~$1.59/gal in '03.. today it is nearly $4/gal. more than 2x as much.



As for the price of gear.. yea, some collector synths are going to retain high value just like cars.. some will even be worth more than they were when first released.

Most synths are computers at the core (collect every synth, sampler and modular model known and most have some kind of CPU inside of them).

TRS-80 anybody??

Image

"You can't beat the 4k system at $599!"


$600 today will buy a very nice and very powerful PC. A PC that will emulate very closely all those vintage synths.. (I wont go into the virtual vs. real debate.. let's meet in the middle on this statement).
So it's no surprise that a lot of gear has deflated in value over the years.. usually the stuff that has held value is a collectors item and was limited production.

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Phollop Willing PA » Sun Mar 10, 2013 5:43 pm

Back in the day, an hours pay of minimum wage could net you about 3 to 4 packs of cigarrettes. Now you can't even get a half a pack for the same.

A Peugot 504 in 1978 costs about $4000. A beer costs at university 3 for $1, in 1977.

Maybe my point, if any, is that some things costs more, some are worth more and some just aren't available at any price.

Digital tech has lowered the cost on just about everything except cable TV (I don't know why).
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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by suitandtieguy » Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:28 am

Ashe37 wrote:No, it isn't. In the 1990s, milk, bread and petroleum products (i.e. gasoline) were specifically removed from the CPI in order to provide the appearance of a lack of inflation. The results from after that change are skewed (and also one reason they can claim there is no inflation now...)
the removal of food and fuel from the CPI is one of the most devious narrative-manipulations in recent history.

beware of central banks printing that fast fast cash.

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Walter Ego » Thu Nov 14, 2013 5:23 pm

I'm resurrecting this post with anecdotal evidence and to get others' opinions...

So, as it stands near the end of 2013, a SIGNIFICANT year for new analog synthesizers and sound tools, second-hand MS-20 prices have dropped significantly. I've seen MS-20s in great shape going for $1000, and they seem to sit around. (Makes sense, who wants to shell out even that much, when you can get the same functionality for half that?)

Has the MS-20 deflation affected other areas in the market yet? Will it?

Anecdotally, I'm seeing less vintage gear in general pop up on CL, and what does show up is overpriced compared to even a year ago. Could just be temporary, could just be coincidental. I haven't checked much on eBay prices, but I'm sure others on here have been checking. But it seems that the resurgence could actually drive prices higher. Increased awareness-->increased demand.

So the question again: What effect is the analog resurgence having on the vintage market?

Seems ambiguous to me right now, but I think there has already been an effect.
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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by pflosi » Thu Nov 14, 2013 6:23 pm

The price fluctuations you are referring to do not have anything to do with de- or inflation... :thumbleft:

Glad to see the topic back though.

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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by meatballfulton » Thu Nov 14, 2013 6:27 pm

I've been seeing lower (more sensible) prices on Moog MG-1 and Rogue lately, probably because of Sub Phatty. Weird that Little Phatty didn't have an effect. I guess people look with their eyes rather than listening with their ears and LP had only four knobs :facepalm:
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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Walter Ego » Thu Nov 14, 2013 7:11 pm

pflosi wrote:The price fluctuations you are referring to do not have anything to do with de- or inflation... :thumbleft:

Glad to see the topic back though.
Okay, that is true...I had a hard time finding the right thread to resurrect though. Maybe it was buried somewhere in the mammoth MS-20 Mini thread...or maybe it was being discussed simultaneously on a couple threads.

I will now give myself fifty lashes with a wet Volca... :oops:
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Re: Synth prices and inflation

Post by Cumulus » Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:32 pm

The U.S. economy improving has a lot to do with the synth prices as well.

A few years ago I was finding lots of great musical gear in pawn shops at prices that enabled me to flip the gear at a good price for both me and the seller. (I try to make a few bucks but still pass on a reasonable price to the buyer)

I think there were quite a few more people pawning and selling their gear then, which increased the supply.

Now, there is much less decent gear in the shops and what there is is not priced as cheaply.

Thrift stores have dried up altogether in my area.

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