Quoted from vid1900:
This has not been shown at all.
SMVEs definitely have more wear showing on them than the SM playfields have. Heck, my SM looks better than any of the SMVEs I've seen. Softer wood, thicker clear, whatever it is. There is a difference. They are not the same. I got my SM with under 200 plays on it, and there are two Black LEs here locally. All of them wore significantly better than the SMVEs have.
SM isn't really an airball game though. I don't really understand it. Of course, I have not seen any recent run SMVEs, every one I've played is from earlier in their production schedule.