(Topic ID: 19613)

Pinball price bubble -- MM as an example


By HeyYouSir

7 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 271 posts
  • 106 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 2 years ago by leonml
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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Topic poll

“Predict the future of A list pinball prices”

  • They will continue to rise with no end in sight. ($30K for a MM someday!) 55 votes
    12%
  • They will continue to rise and then take a dip (Newer technology replacing old) 119 votes
    27%
  • They will stay about the same for a long time (Still out of reach for most) 171 votes
    39%
  • I don't want to think about it and enjoy the pins that I have. 44 votes
    10%
  • I don't care. 53 votes
    12%

(442 votes by 0 Pinsiders)

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There are 270 posts in this topic. You are on page 2 of 6.
#51 7 years ago
Quoted from The_Dude_Abides:

I think the prices on the classics will come down with the release of newer pins in higher numbers. But in the end only time will tell there is no magic ball or other market that adequately captures the pinball market to tell one way or the other.
My reasoning being is I will not be purchasing a 5K to 12K 20 year old pin when I can buy a new or newer one (that I haven't played 100+ times) for the same or less. I have heard many members here and friends in the area express the same opinion regarding the matter. But I do see what your saying I just see things a bit differently. And as always I can agree to disagree.

I tend to agree, but we'll see. I look at EM's or 80's arcade machines and wonder if that is the future. Some day these late 80's and 90's pins are going to be the "old man's" games with old design philosophies that were exciting "for their time". A novelty to the younger generation, but to them the machines are not worth the time/space/cash for the newer games they are excited to own. Whether that dramatically alters prices in our life time is debatable. Buyers hope it will happen tomorrow. Sellers hope it will happen 1,000 years from now.

My crystal ball does make one thing very clear about this topic: someone in this thread is inevitably going to get butthurt. We can't talk about these things without someone taking it personal.

#52 7 years ago
Quoted from sleazius:

I sold an MM 6 months ago for $7500, the dearest sale I've heard of over here is $10k, and the cheapest was $4750 for one that was worn to the wood across most of the playfield. I expect that prices over here will rise if you guys keep paying $12k

That gives me an idea. Wonder how much round trip tickets to Australia would be? I figure that plus the cost to ship a machine back home to the US may be cheaper than buying a MM here. Worst case is you would have the memories of a nice trip to boot. Of course, I would fly coach to help cut costs.

#53 7 years ago
Quoted from Hwawonyu:

And that is why the prices wont hold

Nah,Prices will hold up and probably go higher as long as the collectors keep taking good care of them and up and running smoothly.

#54 7 years ago

The other thing to consider is when is the breakoff on new vs old games? Stern, all the way up to X-Men is still using the same basic design/tech that B/W was 15 years ago. So are the new JJP and JPop LCD titles going to be the new games that set the bar between new and old? It seems like there could still be a number of years going up before the new games fills the pipe of demand the old games are occupying right now.

#55 7 years ago
Quoted from DarthXaos:

If you can afford an A title, you would fit my definition of "rich people".

Even if they bought their MM years ago when they were cheaper ?

LTG

#56 7 years ago
Quoted from islandpinball:

...Once the pinball companies start incorporating the newest technologies especially LCD i dont think we will see the DMD titles doubling or tripling again. The DMDs will hold their own for a long time, but i highly doubt they will double and triple like they did in their latest run up to these levels.

+1. Assuming Stern and/or JJP stay in business to "mass" produce new tech pins.

#57 7 years ago
Quoted from bigdaddy07:

The problem is that has been mentioned already, the price of these feature rich new pins are going up and to get better pins with new features your going to pay more. I wont be a bit surprised to see new LE Sterns getting released with an 8k price tag in the near future. Where does that put the B/W A listers? Most likely going up as well.

Actually, if those new features are better than B/W A listers, that puts them going down not up.

#58 7 years ago
Quoted from DarthXaos:

If you can afford an A title, you would fit my definition of "rich people".

Most people would say if you can afford to spend money on ANY pinball machine you are rich.

#59 7 years ago
Quoted from sosage:

I tend to agree, but we'll see. I look at EM's or 80's arcade machines and wonder if that is the future.

I'm not sure about this. In 1985, the Chuck E. Cheese company went through a huge retraction in the number of franchises they had. That meant our local CEC was going out of business and auctioned off most of their games. We bought 5. Most memorable to me at the time were a couple of the prices: Donkey Kong $500, Q-Bert $350. That was 27 years ago(damn I'm getting old) and you'd be hard pressed to get much more than that for them now. But, factor in inflation and their actual cost has gone WAY down. The quickest way to factor inflation for me is the cost of a new Mustang in the year in question versus the current year's model and the price difference in gas(overall, not the sudden spikes or valleys) from the same time period to now, and come to a general multiplier.

Kinda scary to realize what we paid for those things! Thankfully we still have them and haven't realized the net loss, yet. The only real "money maker", if you can call it that, will be my Chexx Hockey machine. USA v USSR. Doesn't get much more Cold War than that!

#60 7 years ago
Quoted from Miguel351:

Most memorable to me at the time were a couple of the prices: Donkey Kong $500, Q-Bert $350. That was 27 years ago(damn I'm getting old) and you'd be hard pressed to get much more than that for them now. But, factor in inflation and their actual cost has gone WAY down.

Yes but how many of those exist today? Still in the thousands. How many MM's? Supply, meet demand. And, lets face it, vids have been simulated and can easily be perfectly emulated. Not so with pinball machines

#61 7 years ago
Quoted from LTG:

It isn't just rich people.
I've seen many people hanging onto A titles. For the simple fact if they ever want to get one again. They may not find one for sale. They may not be able to afford it.
So I don't see supply getting better any time soon.
LTG

That's my thinking, I can't part with any WPC95 pins myself.

#62 7 years ago
Quoted from Cliffy:

And, lets face it, vids have been simulated and can easily be perfectly emulated. Not so with pinball machines

It only takes a few guys to figure out a profitable way to repop pins, a la BBB. Not saying that was a flawless execution of how it should be done, but in the future if these things get to be too outrageous, I could definitely see this kind of thing happening more often.

I know, I know, there's a huge difference between software and hardware, but if we're speculating on the future of the market, all bets are off!

#63 7 years ago
Quoted from LTG:

Even if they bought their MM years ago when they were cheaper ?
LTG

I bought my A-listers over the last 7 years I've been in the hobby. Lucky for me, these were the games I played and loved growing up. I never saw them as A-listers. I think my MM cost something like $7k shipped and, at that time, I thought that was the peak anyone would pay for a production pinball machine. Guess again.

Back to the OP.
There are two things that can happen IMO.

1) All the 90's games become antiques as the industry improves and, as the core market of people who actually remember them dwindles, so will their value. The demand will drop. How many here still buy wood rails? Mind you, this could take another 20 years.

2) The industry suffers some catastrophic demise and all pin manufacturing ends... or the current competition we're seeing fails and we go back to a single manufacturer. In this case, games like MM may remain closer to the pinnacle of pinball technology and, as a result, will likley continue to increase, or at least hold, their value. Until most of us are too old to care or dead anyway.

You can decide which scenario you think is most likely

#64 7 years ago
Quoted from Drano:

I bought my A-listers over the last 7 years I've been in the hobby. Lucky for me, these were the games I played and loved growing up. I never saw them as A-listers. I think my MM cost something like $7k shipped and, at that time, I thought that was the peak anyone would pay for a production pinball machine. Guess again.
Back to the OP.
There are two things that can happen IMO.
1) All the 90's games become antiques as the industry improves and, as the core market of people who actually remember them dwindles, so will their value. The demand will drop. How many here still buy wood rails? Mind you, this could take another 20 years.
2) The industry suffers some catastrophic demise and all pin manufacturing ends... or the current competition we're seeing fails and we go back to a single manufacturer. In this case, games like MM may remain closer to the pinnacle of pinball technology and, as a result, will likley continue to increase, or at least hold, their value. Until most of us are too old to care or dead anyway.
You can decide which scenario you think is most likely

The demise of all pinball manufacturing would be the dagger in the A list prices. Seems counter intuitive, but without new machines interest in the hobby would drop as things would become too stale.

#65 7 years ago
Quoted from taylor34:

The demise of all pinball manufacturing would be the dagger in the A list prices. Seems counter intuitive, but without new machines interest in the hobby would drop as things would become too stale.

That's an interesting point of view.
I think you're right in the long term. New people getting into the hobby would be cut drastically. However, in the short term, the death of pinball would probably send a panic to snatch up any A-list game out there. Just because the industry disappears overnight doesn't mean the market does. That would take time.

#66 7 years ago
Quoted from sleazius:

if you guys keep paying $12k

Okay we'll stop. I've got $6K for a MM, who's got one for me?

#67 7 years ago
Quoted from Cliffy:

And, lets face it, vids have been simulated and can easily be perfectly emulated. Not so with pinball machines

KLOV, Twin Galaxies and every arcade fighting game community on the Internet have a few words for you on that "perfectly emulated" opinion.

...but I get what you're getting at. Emulating physical pinball is the more impossible task.

-5
#68 7 years ago
Quoted from Honch:

I think, in general you will see DMD's come down. Certain classics like MM will always be a high end pin and the most you can hope for is the price to stabilize at best.

(singular/plural mismatch here, and you're missing a preposition...)

#69 7 years ago
Quoted from StevenP:

singular/plural mismatch here, and you're missing a preposition...

This is an internet forum, not a masters thesis. As long as the poster conveys their message, does it really matter?

#70 7 years ago
Quoted from Jake:

This is an internet forum, not a masters thesis. As long as the poster conveys their message, does it really matter?

He's trolling Honch.

#71 7 years ago
Quoted from taylor34:

1) All the 90's games become antiques as the industry improves and, as the core market of people who actually remember them dwindles, so will their value. The demand will drop. How many here still buy wood rails? Mind you, this could take another 20 years.

This is the nostalgia aspect I referred to and I agree with a few corrections, if you don't mind.

All games will become antiquated whether or not the industry improves and for the reason you specify; the core dying off (God forbid I respectfully submit that my hope is we can push that out 30 years or more. Not because of selfuish valuation consideration but simply because I wanna love on my games - and remember them - past my 70's

#72 7 years ago

What is the life expectancy of old electronics? There may come
a time when repairing old circuit boards is not cost effective.
Shortage of replacement components, etc.

For the A listers, an aftermarket of replacement re-engineered
electronics may pop up much like we have already seen for some
of the early generation SS pins. Simply replace the electronic
innards with a new and improved version. These could offer new,
enhanced game features. Just some thoughts.

#73 7 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

He's trolling Honch.

Nothing new.

Quoted from Cliffy:

This is the nostalgia aspect I referred to and I agree with a few corrections, if you don't mind.
All games will become antiquated whether or not the industry improves and for the reason you specify; the core dying off (God forbid I respectfully submit that my hope is we can push that out 30 years or more. Not because of selfuish valuation consideration but simply because I wanna love on my games - and remember them - past my 70's

+1

#74 7 years ago
Quoted from taylor34:

The demise of all pinball manufacturing would be the dagger in the A list prices. Seems counter intuitive, but without new machines interest in the hobby would drop as things would become too stale.

Maybe, but that didn't happen during Sterns dark ages, hobbyist weren't buying BBH, WPT, and the likes so we re-focused on the classics. I do however agree that new machines will aid and has contributed to some of the newer interest in the hobby.

#75 7 years ago
Quoted from The_Dude_Abides:

My reasoning being is I will not be purchasing a 5K to 12K 20 year old pin when I can buy a new or newer one (that I haven't played 100+ times before) for the same or less.

My opinion is totally different: why would I pay 5K for a Stern that has not proven itself yet, is unknown if it'll be a great, good or not even average game, that may drop significant in price once it's not NIB anymore..
Buy for the same money a proven A-title (in good/restored condition) which is for years on top of everyones wish list, you know what to expect (rules/depth/.. are known), and it will hold its value probably better (as it hasn't dropped over the last years in value) ?

#76 7 years ago
Quoted from aeneas:

My opinion is totally different: why would I pay 5K for a Stern that has not proven itself yet, is unknown if it'll be a great, good or not even average game, that may drop significant in price once it's not NIB anymore..
Buy for the same money a proven A-title (in good/restored condition) which is for years on top of everyones wish list, you know what to expect (rules/depth/.. are known), and it will hold its value probably better (as it hasn't dropped over the last years in value) ?

Well to each their own enjoy the older 'A' titles. I will enjoy Sterns proven classics as in SM, LOTR, Tron, TSPP and new pins like Predator maybe JJP 2nd. To say no Stern has 'proven' itself is a little short sided IMO. But can respect the fact you see things in a different light.

I do have a hard time understanding why some don't seem to want new pins to be better than the older ones...If new pins don't sell then pinballs long term survival goes down the drain.

#77 7 years ago
Quoted from The_Dude_Abides:

Well to each their own enjoy the older 'A' titles. I will enjoy Sterns proven classics as in SM, LOTR, Tron, TSPP and new pins like Predator maybe JJP 2nd. To say no Stern has 'proven' itself is a little short sided IMO. But can respect the fact you see things in a different light.

You missed his point. He isn't talking about Stern proving itself as a company, he's talking about buying a NIB pin that hasn't proven itself in terms of rules, how it will play, how it will be received by pinheads, etc.

#78 7 years ago
Quoted from DarthXaos:

If you can afford an A title, you would fit my definition of "rich people".

Extremely flawed way to look at people that own these pinball machines. I personally know of a few collectors that have owned these "high end titles" for years and have made great personal sacrifices to do so. In no way are they "rich", but passionate people about our hobby.

And like most hobbies that have passionate people (i.e. people that own nice Harley's, cars, whatever) people are going to make sacrifices to get what they want. They are not "rich"!

#79 7 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

You missed his point. He isn't talking about Stern proving itself as a company, he's talking about buying a NIB pin that hasn't proven itself in terms of rules, how it will play, how it will be received by pinheads, etc.

Oh in that case I see his point. That same argument could be made for not purchasing almost all pins NIB now and in the past. I still would rather spend 5K on a new pin or newer release that is proven than one I have played 100s of times and is 20 years old. As always to each their own. As long as we all stay flippin it will be all good. The excitement/anticipation of waiting to get a pin you have never seen in person or played before is really addicting I think.

#80 7 years ago

Yes I was talking about buying nib (le) pins.
To me a tspp or lotr are already proven Alist titles.

And prices here in Europe are still different than the usa so our point of view will always be different.
A TZ or taf here is about 2000, cv totan mb afm around 3500 and mm 5500. All good but not cq.
A nib pro stern is almost 5000 and le is 7500 euro..

#81 7 years ago

A sign that the bubble is starting to pop?
AFM price reduced. Good luck with the sale.

http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/afm-price-reduced

#82 7 years ago

"This TOTAN has been SOLD, buyer got a very good price for this machine!"

Sounds like this went down from the original price too.

Still high prices and will certainly stay as such but the trend of continuous climbing has tapered off.

#83 7 years ago

Here's my take on it all...

Yes, prices are going through the roof. Supply and demand factors in. I think the end of the price rise is coming (not necessarily a crash) very soon.

The hobby has 2 basic restraints: money, and space. Moreso space, IMO, since someone plonking 10K on a pinball tends to not have money issues. For the longest time, we have Stern as the only manufacturer making pins. Occasionally, someone will sell that MB or MM or (insert high end pin here) they've had for 10 years to obtain funds/space to purchase the new machine they want.

Now, we have JJP entering the mix. Stern has elevated their game to compete with JJP. We have 2 manufacturers of quality pins in the market, which means more used equipment will re-enter the market to accomodate the new titles. The question is: Will there be enough buyers at current price levels to accomodate the elevated influx of used equipment, due to there being now 2 manufacturers?

I don't think so. I see prices coming down on a list titles 1-2k in the near future. Maybe I'm nuts, but that is my take on it.

Also, elevated price levels compete with other goods for demand of the same price levels. Maybe someone decides they want a boat, or a classic 300ZX TT or something over a pin (man prices have gotten nuts)!

-Mike

#84 7 years ago

I grew up in Balmer, hon ; )

#85 7 years ago
Quoted from LTG:

It isn't just rich people.
I've seen many people hanging onto A titles. For the simple fact if they ever want to get one again. They may not find one for sale. They may not be able to afford it.
So I don't see supply getting better any time soon.
LTG

You just described me Lloyd, in fact took me many years to find certain machines in the condition I wanted.

#86 7 years ago

The option wasn't there ........

My opinion, machines will hold over the summer, sales always slow, spikes come after Christmas and tax return time. Here is my option "will continue to go up, then plateau" just because I do think there is an end in site. I don't think pin prices will drop in general. Especially A and B titles. (one machines price dropping doesn't mean jack, I am talking big picture)

ONE PROBLEM, this assumes the same number of collectors remains or grows, there are only so many MM's supply and demand, they fall into the hands of collectors that won't sell, you are going to pay. Example, a guy comes to your house and says "I will give you 10k for MM?". Months later "I will give you 12k?" finally comes at you with 14k and you think about it..........fine 15k. All of a sudden a new collector that won't take 15k for his machine, searched forever, finally got it, and 18k won't touch it...... (obviously an example of the progression, there aren't any 18k MM BUT WILL be for sure. Again as long as there are collectors buying.

#87 7 years ago

I agree with some. I think with Sterns selling for what they are currently 5-7.5k, 90's machines will stay steady or possible continue to rise for a bit. I absolutely think when LCD's become standard for Stern and JJP starts cranking out machines, prices will fall and just as quick as the prices have gone up IMO.

#88 7 years ago
Quoted from Toasterdog:

I absolutely think when LCD's become standard for Stern and JJP starts cranking out machines, prices will fall and just as quick as the prices have gone up IMO.

Can you imagine a line up with 5 or 6 LCD pins stacked up and screens blazing. At the same time the LED light shows are rocking the room.
You know it will look awesome.
I can't wait and its why I won't spend a dime on an old box. Let the collectors enjoy their memories. I like cool and new.

#89 7 years ago
Quoted from Hwawonyu:

Can you imagine a line up with 5 or 6 LCD pins stacked up and screens blazing. At the same time the LED light shows are rocking the room.
You know it will look awesome.
I can't wait and its why I won't spend a dime on an old box. Let the collectors enjoy their memories. I like cool and new.

Me too, I just like to have the old boxes too

#90 7 years ago
Quoted from ovfdfireman:

Me too, I just like to have the old boxes too

Double down!!

#91 7 years ago

Our generation is at its financial high end.So these pins are what we collect. Until we die off ,or become totally financially destroyed by our incredibly incompetent government ,"both parties" (ain't starting that debate).Prices will remain high.

#92 7 years ago

I think you could make an argument for MM that they're still under priced. Once it becomes acceptable to ask a higher number you'll see many more on the market, just like we saw with AFM when it hit that 7-8k range.

#93 7 years ago
Quoted from HeyYouSir:

What is the life expectancy of old electronics? There may come
a time when repairing old circuit boards is not cost effective.
Shortage of replacement components, etc.

This has already happened and in many ways, has already resolved itself with many companies selling replacement electronics. As long as the hobby stays strong and the market exists, solutions will be found.

#94 7 years ago
Quoted from Toasterdog:

I agree with some. I think with Sterns selling for what they are currently 5-7.5k, 90's machines will stay steady or possible continue to rise for a bit.

The introduction of "LE" games and the general price increases to the Stern games over the last 5 years is clearly one of the reasons why A-list W/B games are going up price. If I am going to spend $7500 on a Tron LE, why not spend it on AFM/MM/MB too -- games I most likely already know I enjoy?

Quoted from Toasterdog:

I absolutely think when LCD's become standard for Stern and JJP starts cranking out machines, prices will fall and just as quick as the prices have gone up IMO.

Just not going to happen. Just look at *any* other hobby and what happens to items that are desirable and rare. Prices might level off, they might go down a little, but they won't be coming down quick. Unless Stern and JJP are going to create a revolutionary product that is what MM is to Humpty Dumpty and makes us forget the last 50 years of pinball, newer games with slightly updated tech won't change my enjoyment of MM.

The only way prices will come down dramatically is if the hobby collapses and the majority of the people get out of it.

#95 7 years ago
Quoted from The_Dude_Abides:

I think we will see a drop in prices on the classics as Stern starts implementing some new features on future pins and JJP announces their second title.

Quoted from DrStarkweather:

Im betting we start to see a flood of 'A' level pins at estate sales in 15 years.

Quoted from The_Dude_Abides:

Times are a changing my friend with a little more youth being injected into the community. I have a feeling LCD displays will become standard and many younger/new pinheads will be drawn to them.

+1

I don't think its a coincidence that the pin bubble or whatever started inflating faster when JJP and WOZ was announced and then Stern started to up their game and now Jpop and SkitB (maybe) are on the scene........

JJP and the LCD brought me back in last January and I bought a WOZ then, of course, while waiting for it, I bought a LOTR LE in April of 2011 for $5250 and then picked up an SM and BHZA since....

When I started, I never intended on buying more pins for the sake of "collecting" them and the more I think about it even though it would be really HARD because I'm a natural born "collector".....I can actually see myself getting rid of LOTR LE and SM as newer pins and technology come out....

I've almost bought several different "classics"...I mean really close...and each time afterwards I was always glad I didn't, so hopefully no OLDER pins for me (I'll never say never!), just new ones and we'll see about the ones I've got....

What's disappointing to me is that while my wife and kids and even my mom started out playing those pins, now I'm it......so if WOZ doesn't entice the kids especially I guess I could be out with old and just keep that one and BHZA and rotate em in and out or just get out all together...who knows

#96 7 years ago
Quoted from Toasterdog:

I absolutely think when LCD's become standard for Stern and JJP starts cranking out machines, prices will fall and just as quick as the prices have gone up IMO.

I disagree with this. There have been polls done here and most people don't really care that much about having an LCD on a pin. Yeah, it will be new and different, but it certainly isn't going to make the non-LCD pins less desirable.

#97 7 years ago
Quoted from RobT:

I disagree with this. There have been polls done here and most people don't really care that much about having an LCD on a pin. Yeah, it will be new and different, but it certainly isn't going to make the non-LCD pins less desirable.

But those polls are highly speculative. None of us have actually seen how the LCD will be used and integrated into the gameplay. As a WOZ purchaser, I am hopeful, but I don't actually know. I think if WOZ handles it well and then either JJP or Stern improves on that in a subsequent game, we could be looking at a major shift in demand. My guess is that this will happen.

#98 7 years ago
Quoted from txstargazer3:

But those polls are highly speculative. None of us have actually seen how the LCD will be used and integrated into the gameplay.

I'd agree with this. I don't think the fact that the display has changed means much to most pinheads. If it adds something to the gameplay then it will further the evolution of pinball. The addition of DMD's coincided with deeper rules and more features in pinball. For example, the fact that Funhouse is an alphanumeric pin doesn't detract from it for me, as it's got the features of a WPC and that is what counts. Do nice graphics on a DMD help a game, sure, but the gameplay is what really matters.

#99 7 years ago
Quoted from txstargazer3:

But those polls are highly speculative. None of us have actually seen how the LCD will be used and integrated into the gameplay. As a WOZ purchaser, I am hopeful, but I don't actually know. I think if WOZ handles it well and then either JJP or Stern improves on that in a subsequent game, we could be looking at a major shift in demand. My guess is that this will happen.

+1

I've said I think its a game changer from day one....most people will want to own and play the newest and the best....that's why we buy iPhones, a PS3, etc...if you had a PS3 would you plug and play the original PS

I see what the video integration has done for slot machines and if there is ever a chance for young people to like pins again and get involved then this is the ONLY hope of that happening...the menu screen, etc. that kids are used to....

Or pins will continue to be sold to 5k-10k people worldwide and the hobby will never grow as the HUO buyers might go up or down by a few hundred people depending on the economy each year....

On location is DEAD (a few bright spots like Pinballz but they have other modern games too) unless the LCD can change that as well...

Does anybody remember the recent cost cutting state of Stern not so long ago and no JJP or any other pin maker?

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