Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by Syn303 » Fri Feb 12, 2010 8:02 pm

:lol: for $700 you'll get a cardboard cutout of a System-700.
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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by OriginalJambo » Sat Feb 13, 2010 1:51 am

otto wrote:Octave Cats seem to have always been the red-head stepchild. I was searching for one recently being that it seemed to be an under-rated gem and I’d never seen them go above $800. Well much to my surprise, I bid $1k and was outbid.
It seems the value of the CAT has raised substantially here over the last few months. Recently one sold at a VEMIA auction for around £800 and I've seen a few listed on SOS Classifieds for over £1k! A bit like this:



Whether it will sell or not is another story however, but it's still a far cry from what I paid for mine!

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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by otto » Sun Feb 14, 2010 7:56 pm

OK Esus, provide your analogy or model for your point and I will pick it apart and tell you why they aren't similar.

It's easy to be on that side of a debate, that how creationists write books to "disprove" evolution, by attempting to pick apart evolution rather than actually stating a real hypothesis and model.

What is funny is that we basically agree, vintage synth prices will continue to rise. I just think your a bit more optimistic and sure then anyone should be regarding investments and future valuation.
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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by Esus » Mon Feb 15, 2010 5:46 pm

otto wrote:OK Esus, provide your analogy or model for your point and I will pick it apart and tell you why they aren't similar.
I thought the Roland and Stradavarius examples made a good point, but OK, let's compare a Minimoog with a DX7.
Assume that S & D is based on scarcity versus desire, and add perception into the mix. Here's why I think it works in this case:
Minimoog--12,000 made (Synthmuseum numbers) List price; $1495.00
General perception is: vintage analog is in and very desirable. Minimoogs were used in thousands of classic recordings; therefore it has cult status--folks still want that signature sound. I regularly see Minis on eBay in the high $3K range and above. Hard to say if they end up selling for those prices, though. Why are there a bunch of emulations of the Minimoog? Mainly because you can't just toddle down to your local Guitar Center and pick one up. Moog Music makes the "Minimoog" Voyager and until recently, the Old School. They're being effective marketers--they want to cash in on that Minimoog mystique.

DX7--160,000 made (Synthmuseum numbers) List price: $2195.00 (Dave Benson's DX7 page)
General perception: FM sucks, digital sucks. EPiano patch on every '80s pop record--more suck. I've seen them on eBay for less than $50. And lastly, how many DX7 emulations are out there as compared to Minimoog? I bought my DX7IIFDE! with all the trimmings for less than $200 a couple of years ago. At that price, why not? And every button, key and slider works perfectly.

I'll concede that in 1983, analog was out and digital was in. I hear stories about folks getting a Mini back then for $400 or so. Times change, but so does perception. And perception is key...
otto wrote:It's easy to be on that side of a debate, that how creationists write books to "disprove" evolution, by attempting to pick apart evolution rather than actually stating a real hypothesis and model.
I don't really consider this a debate per se. I'm not trying to prove or disprove S & D. My guess is that it became an economic model as an explanation of observation of real world human behavior.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supply_and_demand
And just for the record, I'm not a creationist.
otto wrote:What is funny is that we basically agree, vintage synth prices will continue to rise. I just think your a bit more optimistic and sure then anyone should be regarding investments and future valuation.
OK, I'm curious. If you basically agree with me about synth prices rising, and if it's not S & D, then what is it?

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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by cornutt » Tue Feb 16, 2010 2:47 am

meatballfulton wrote:
There's a lot of hype that the 6 and 60 sound better...OK let's not revisit that rathole, but it does affect prices...and nowadays the 106 chip issues are well known which affects the price negatively. Junos aren't a great example anyway as they have never been especially expensive.
Also, there were a ton of 106's made... a number I've seen is 40,000. That was a lot more than the 60 and especially the 6, which was a stopgap model and was only made for about a year.
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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by guitarsandsynths » Tue Feb 16, 2010 5:55 am

The price of the 106 should only go up then, since there are way more than 40,000 nerds that want one! :lol:
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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by otto » Tue Feb 16, 2010 5:36 pm

Esus wrote:
otto wrote:OK Esus, provide your analogy or model for your point and I will pick it apart and tell you why they aren't similar.
I thought the Roland and Stradavarius examples made a good point, but OK, let's compare a Minimoog with a DX7.
Assume that S & D is based on scarcity versus desire, and add perception into the mix. Here's why I think it works in this case:
Minimoog--12,000 made (Synthmuseum numbers) List price; $1495.00
General perception is: vintage analog is in and very desirable. Minimoogs were used in thousands of classic recordings; therefore it has cult status--folks still want that signature sound. I regularly see Minis on eBay in the high $3K range and above. Hard to say if they end up selling for those prices, though. Why are there a bunch of emulations of the Minimoog? Mainly because you can't just toddle down to your local Guitar Center and pick one up. Moog Music makes the "Minimoog" Voyager and until recently, the Old School. They're being effective marketers--they want to cash in on that Minimoog mystique.

DX7--160,000 made (Synthmuseum numbers) List price: $2195.00 (Dave Benson's DX7 page)
General perception: FM sucks, digital sucks. EPiano patch on every '80s pop record--more suck. I've seen them on eBay for less than $50. And lastly, how many DX7 emulations are out there as compared to Minimoog? I bought my DX7IIFDE! with all the trimmings for less than $200 a couple of years ago. At that price, why not? And every button, key and slider works perfectly.

I'll concede that in 1983, analog was out and digital was in. I hear stories about folks getting a Mini back then for $400 or so. Times change, but so does perception. And perception is key...
otto wrote:It's easy to be on that side of a debate, that how creationists write books to "disprove" evolution, by attempting to pick apart evolution rather than actually stating a real hypothesis and model.
I don't really consider this a debate per se. I'm not trying to prove or disprove S & D. My guess is that it became an economic model as an explanation of observation of real world human behavior.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supply_and_demand
And just for the record, I'm not a creationist.
otto wrote:What is funny is that we basically agree, vintage synth prices will continue to rise. I just think your a bit more optimistic and sure then anyone should be regarding investments and future valuation.
OK, I'm curious. If you basically agree with me about synth prices rising, and if it's not S & D, then what is it?
Maybe we just misunderstand each other. Of course it’s about supply and demand but there are factors the affect supply and demand. It is my impression that you are making the assumption that:
Trends will continue as is for the foreseeable future (i.e. Prices will continue to climb at the rates they’ve been climbing over the last decade or so). This is a biggie and its complex. To some extent I would argue that “lesser” analog gear has already curtailed the potential value of more expensive gear. As the Arp 2600 went astronomical the Arp Odyssey took off as well. I think this is symptomatic of “next best thing” or “best I can get for my money”. I think if there were no Arp Odyssey than the prices of the 2600 would even be more expensive.

Many of the big synths that took off in price also hit a brick wall and either fell or leveled out. CS-80, TB-303, Prophet 5, OB-Xa/8, etc.

The Stradivarius example. There were only 700 or so “true” Stradivarius made and many of them are lost. They are around 300 years old (projecting 270+ years into the future is pretty bold by any standard). They were hand-crafted wood instruments that in all reality could still be easily repaired/restored. Juxtapose that with analog synths, which are 30 years old many of them already have functional issues, repairs are complex and ultimately they were manufactured so they won’t ever have the magical sound cache of a Stradivarius (which has almost mythical status) . Parts will continue to deteriorate, oxidize, etc. Many of the components aren’t replaceable and even when they are you have the same issue as you do with remaking the synth today. It just won’t sound the same, tolerances and different materials all add up to a difference. I’ll bet in 50 years or so most Arp 2600s and such as going to be a heavy amalgamation of new and old. In a way we sort of live in a golden period of time when you can still get vintage synths that are, for the most part, what they were. Even if you compared this to old guitars, repairs and such are so easy and wont fundamentally effect the sound as much as large electronic replacements in synths.

You can already see this “parts issue” in action with the Juno 106. The prices took off for a while, a couple years ago they were going for $700+ for a short period of time. It was great, the magic of the juno series with midi. Well the chip problem was just so prevalent that many people got stung buying things and everyone else realized it was a big risk, particularly relative to value. There are fixes, including old chips, new replacements and even a inexpensive way to try to fix the old chips but it still hasn’t brought the price back up. They are just too much of a liability and pain. At some point almost every synth is going to face issues of non-orignal replacement parts to keep them alive and that will take away from the synth even if just “perception”.

The TB-303 is a fine example of a price drop either due to alternatives or diminishing trends (I’d guess some of both). People were paying $2K for these not long ago. Now they are down to $1200 or so last time I checked. Probably due to both the availability of a bunch of alternatives, none of which sound exactly the same but some very close. I’d also guess that the acid and TB related music trends have tailed off a bit. I read it all the time that people are happy to buy a new voyager than worry about maintaining a vintage synth.

I’d actually bet that the DX7 does eventually climb in price. In fact it already has, just not greatly. You already have people talking about how FM8 just doesn’t sound the same. FM offers a really powerful alternative in synthesis and the shortfalls you mention are due to the users, not the synth. Also, you have to remember, for a time the sounds of analog synths were considered lame just like some might consider the usual use of the DX7 lame (although I think most things retro-80s are considered “cool” by someone). DX7s are used and abused and thrown out. Where one might keep a broken minimoog cause its worth fixing, the low value of DX synths means they will go to the landfill.

Musical trends will continue to change and will continue to diminish what was once cool. Baby-Boomers brought up the price of 50’s-60’s guitars, Gen Xrs were more interested in quirky 70’s guitars. In 15-20 years people will be interested in old microkorgs and such. The prices of many vintage guitars have already fallen quite a bit from their prime, just like some old cars from certain periods as other, later cars develop prominence. On the same line of thought, there isn’t a huge interest in big band instruments and paraphernalia or early Americana folk and country instruments. As trends change things will drop off and will become more museum pieces than anything. This doesn’t even address that as technology evolves there probably will be better and more interesting alternatives. Not to mention we are talking a very niche item here, it doesn’t even have the broad appeal of guitars, let alone cars.

I guess what I’ve been trying to get at all along is that sure it is based on supply and demand, I never debated that. However, to just assume demand will continue to increase at the same pace forever-more and that no factors will have an effect is ridiculous and is where simplifying it to just “supply and demand” is silly. You have to take into account what drives supply and demand.
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Re: Synthesizer's economic crises!?!

Post by Esus » Wed Feb 17, 2010 6:16 pm

Otto:
You've made a lot of good points. :)
otto wrote:It is my impression that you are making the assumption that:
Trends will continue as is for the foreseeable future (i.e. Prices will continue to climb at the rates they’ve been climbing over the last decade or so). This is a biggie and its complex. Many of the big synths that took off in price also hit a brick wall and either fell or leveled out. CS-80, TB-303, Prophet 5, OB-Xa/8, etc.


I agree with the second half of your statement. Human behavior, being fickle and yet consistent at the same time, makes this argument pretty much a case by case situation. Not every MiniKorg or SH-1000 will be worth multiples of their original selling prices, but I think as far as CS-80s, P5s, etc., I would argue that some hoarding might be going on; times are tough and people are selling when they don't want to. Buyers are buying and holding, betting (or speculating) that they'lll be worth more down the road. My guess is there are no more than a half dozen techs in the world who could rebuild a CS-80, creating the perception that it would be too expensive (and therefore undesirable) to own. Then, something like an Arturia CS-80 starts to look pretty good. And as you said, lack of available chips for some synths also make them undesirable.
otto wrote:I’d actually bet that the DX7 does eventually climb in price. In fact it already has, just not greatly. Musical trends will continue to change and will continue to diminish what was once cool.
Agreed. I think that DX7s are going up because, even at $100-$200 more than a few months ago, it's probably still cheaper and at a better entry level than a "comparable analog" keyboard. And it's possible that demand has increased because some people are anticipating a resurgence of digital synth popularity. At $300 or so, maybe they can afford to wait and flip.
otto wrote:I guess what I’ve been trying to get at all along is that sure it is based on supply and demand, I never debated that. However, to just assume demand will continue to increase at the same pace forever-more and that no factors will have an effect is ridiculous and is where simplifying it to just “supply and demand” is silly. You have to take into account what drives supply and demand.
I never said or implied that "demand will increase its pace forever-more". No theory or model that involves humans is absolute. I thought my inclusion of perception explained that. There are a gazillion variables that will affect the perceived value, and therefore the desirability of a Minimoog or Odyssey. The paradox of human nature being simultaneously consistent and random just makes this issue harder to qualify--the "case by case" reference I made.
Maybe you feel I oversimplified the concept, and I readily admit that I did, given the fact that this is a vintage synth forum and not one on economic theory. I base my belief that, in general, if a) Item is perceived to be desirable, b) Item is in short supply, c) Perception=desire, and d) Perception/Desire + Scarcity=More demand, and therefore, Item sells for a higher price. I've seen it happen countless times, and in countless situations, so as I've interpreted it, I stand by it. If I understand correctly, you and I agree on some of the basics, and as for the rest, I'll respectfully agree to disagree. :)

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