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(Topic ID: 42610)

Pinball Manufacturers creating price bubble?


By flashinstinct

7 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 18 posts
  • 14 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 7 years ago by Pimp77
  • No one calls this topic a favorite

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    -2
    #1 7 years ago

    What would happen if pinball manufacturers (Stern, JJP etc..) dropped the price of their pins by $1K? (I'm just using this number as a loose figure here) Wouldn't that stop the price madness of the used market? and get more people to buy their new product? Or are their still too many people buying on a whim? Pinball is on a high right now wouldn't it be smarter for companies to cash in on the money train and get more people addicted to pinball than to be satisfied with crumbs... EX: STTNG sold over 11k machines...VS the new Star Trek that will maybe sell 2000, smaller profits but on a larger scale bigger returns....Overnight people with used machines couldn't ask obscene amounts of money for them... yes, no maybe? Am I talking out of my ass here?

    #2 7 years ago

    Seriously, ANOTHER pricing thread? I swear, anything with the word "bubble" in it should have it's own forum.

    #3 7 years ago

    I know... but I'm just trying to state that greed from the manufacturers will be their own demise. If you think about it.. they don't reinvent the cabinet, most of the boards are used on all the games they make... most of the parts (bumpers, sleeves, flippers, coils, DMDs, lights) are reused on all the games. Hell even some of the elements are reused on CAD files to create the playfields. The main differences are the artwork, the custom toys, the code. I know that it takes time to create a game but this is still a assembly chain kind of business...

    #4 7 years ago

    I wish I had visibility into the manufacturers profit and loss statements. I'm not convinced that their pricing is based on greed.

    #5 7 years ago
    Quoted from rad:

    I wish I had visibility into the manufacturers profit and loss statements. I'm not convinced that their pricing is based on greed.

    If it is true that Stern sells less than 5k machines per year (which they unquestionably did for many years before the recent resurgence) then they are not as flush in cash as people think. They have big time over head just in staffing.

    #6 7 years ago

    First off I can not express how much I appreciate all my customers and their support for me to make great pinball today with new pin teams. I would love to make a 5k game again, and we talk about it all the time. But without going to China for cheap parts (and sending jobs there) we are stuck for now with a higher price all USA made pinball.

    For us greed factors in less, as it is time consuming and expensive to make each title from scratch at small custom quantities. But as always my phone is open if folks have "better" ways to make a loaded game for 1/2 the price? Would folks buy a half decent game for $4995 from us, perhaps and we shall see in the future. Or are we all spoiled to want an LE style for this low price? Jpop

    #7 7 years ago

    Jpop no punned intended I wanted to focus mostly on the big guys.

    #8 7 years ago

    Well, what is retail on a acdc premium? $7695
    OK, We all know what the average pinsider can buy one for.

    If that much gets whacked off the price, then how much is seller making?

    my guess is not enough.

    At full retail you have to assume a dealer margin of around 35% + or -.

    But then you have distributors selling to retail customers too.

    I have no idea what point I'm making.

    Business people just need to make money and a business with overhead needs to make around 20% to be profitable unless the overhead was insanely low or you are carrying no inventory.

    Is the retail price artificially too high?

    #9 7 years ago

    Stern basically copied JJP's price without adding a single thing to their product.Nada zero zilch.
    At least you get the LCD screen with WOZ,there by justifing the price.

    Quoted from maddog14:Is the retail price artificially too high?

    In Stern's case yes because they haven't improved or innovated their product.They've given their customers nothing in return for their price increase.It just costs more than ever somehow.Scott

    #10 7 years ago

    I am pretty much convinced there is no bubble. The average pin of mine 1K or less are rising in cost purely to supply and demand, and still would regardless if any new pins were being made.

    #11 7 years ago
    Quoted from flashinstinct:

    What would happen if pinball manufacturers (Stern, JJP etc..) dropped the price of their pins by $1K? (I'm just using this number as a loose figure here) Wouldn't that stop the price madness of the used market? and get more people to buy their new product? Or are their still too many people buying on a whim? Pinball is on a high right now wouldn't it be smarter for companies to cash in on the money train and get more people addicted to pinball than to be satisfied with crumbs...

    No. It wouldn't be smarter for a company to sell an item for $1k less than what the market will bear.

    #12 7 years ago
    Quoted from krupa:

    No. It wouldn't be smarter for a company to sell an item for $1k less than what the market will bear.

    When you speak market you are focusing on a very particular bunch of people. If you lower the price your market grows. I just feel like the pinball market is going to implode on itself. I guess it will come to that eventually with Heighway, Skit B, Quetzal, JPop's pinball (zinware) and a slew of other coming to the market. I just wish that the other contenders would release more games..Stern is the powerhouse and knows it and will keep on behaving that way until they feel the sting.

    #13 7 years ago

    if stern just throws out a number and hopes someone will buy, I would be shocked. I dont think its any more complicated than supply and demand. its not like they could put a 15K price tag on their latest machine because they are greedy and reap all the profits. granted 15K is 85K less then the latest asking price for a MM on the classifieds (lol!!!), but seriously, that price would drop sales considerably (imho) and effect profits just the same. perhaps its why we see pre order components to jersey jacks new ones??? maybe he can get an idea of who is willing to pay what prior to investing in the making of the machine??

    #14 7 years ago
    Quoted from flashinstinct:

    When you speak market you are focusing on a very particular bunch of people. If you lower the price your market grows.

    We may disagree on how big the potential market is. I'm not convinced it's big enough to warrant, or even cover, a significant price decrease. I know everybody wants lower prices but all indicators are pointing the other way.

    #15 7 years ago

    commercial vending machines (regardless of what it is - arcade games, soda, redemption etc) all cost over $5k typically. Many cost 8k-15k easily. Actually, 8k for a pinball machine, with it's complex design and sheer number of parts is actually a bargain. Not for me personally, as I can't afford them, but that is besides the point. Unless you have actually designed a product before, you wouldn't ever realize how much these things really do cost to make. It has nothing to do if it is intended for the home audience who makes a household income of $150k or not.

    Many route operators are out of business because the cost of ALL machines have gone up. Driving games cost sometimes $20k in which to compensate you have to make each game over a $1 to play, or worse yet use swipe cards (which cost 10k to install) to obfuscate the money denomination.

    I truly hate these pricing bubble threads. It's painful to read, and often turns me off to pinside for a good couple weeks when I see too much complaining.

    #16 7 years ago
    Quoted from krupa:

    No. It wouldn't be smarter for a company to sell an item for $1k less than what the market will bear.

    Exactly! Pinball companies aren't creating the price bubble, consumers are. Stern/JJP are simply providing a product and selling it for a price that buyers are willing to pay. We have ourselves to blame... If we stop paying high dollar amounts for any game, prices will come down. I'll admit I'm at fault for buying a WOZ and contributing to this problem. If only Stern/JJP weren't making such fun games.... We need a couple of turds like NBA/IJ4 to be released to stop this trend from continuing and keep the money in our pockets and out of the hands of these greedy pinball companies

    #17 7 years ago

    There's layers of issues
    1. Consumers gladly paying $7.5k for NIB Stern without questioning the increase
    2. If I can buy a used pin that is more feature rich than a new Stern (I.E. TZ, TAF, STTNG) for less, the demand goes up
    3. Collectors holding onto games instead of rotating, which means less pins in the market
    4. Surge of new collectors joining
    5. Price of goods going up
    6. Lower quantities produced than 15 years ago, cost of each goes up

    I'm sort of excited to see how Skit-B and Charlie from spooky pinball come out on this. I think the only way to make a great pinball while maintaining a great price is to eliminate overhead, and pour your passion into the project.

    For naysayers, go ahead and price it out. Go look at one of your pinball machines, add up all the components.

    Full PROC system
    Cabinet
    Legs
    Lockdown bar
    playfield glass
    Backglass
    Power supply
    Playfield
    Playfield components (pop bumpers, flipper assemblies, light sockets, bulbs, switches)
    wire harnesses
    coin door

    Just in materials cost, I think the last time I calculated it I was somewhere near $2500, and you still haven't paid for assembly, paid someone to do artwork, paid someone to do sound, paid someone to do programming, paid testers to work out bugs

    #18 7 years ago
    Quoted from flashinstinct:

    Am I talking out of my ass here?

    Yes.

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