An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

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Irinikus
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Irinikus » Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:30 am

mapesdhs wrote:I guess the key thing is, there's a difference between being irrational and actually having a rationale. :D Buying my Enterprise 128 could be called irrational, but I had genuine personal reasons for buying it, reasons that were important to me. Presumably the C65 buyer is merely two orders of magnitude more determined. :D

Ian.


I absolutely agree.

We all have our reasons for doing what we do and they're perfectly valid. :D
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Trippynet » Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:14 pm

It's an interesting one alright. With my SGIs, I did have price limits of what I was prepared to pay. Fuel prices a few years ago were low enough for me to justify it, but at the moment one from your site would be out of my price range to be honest.

About the only time I've spent what you could consider to be daft money on anything was when I bought a rare John Frusciante EP a number of years ago and paid £175 for it. The two reasons were that I really wanted it, and I knew that if I had to re-sell it, I'd get most if not all of the money back again. As it happens, there's one on eBay right now for £300...
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Irinikus » Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:49 pm

mapesdhs wrote:I guess the key thing is, there's a difference between being irrational and actually having a rationale. :D Buying my Enterprise 128 could be called irrational, but I had genuine personal reasons for buying it, reasons that were important to me. Presumably the C65 buyer was merely two orders of magnitude more determined. :D

Ian.


The Enterprise 128 is a really cool machine! Now we're talking! :D
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby GIJoe » Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:53 pm

that C65 final bid is insane. at first i was under the impression that it's truly an ultra rare machine but then you go on youtube and see that there are several users around there already, demoing those things. sounds like a few hundred of these machines were made.

i wonder what kind of money console devkits from a few generations ago would fetch these days, complete with documentation and tools and all. the early ones obviously, not those made in later phases of a console lifecycle, then usually just some mod of the retail console. at least you could do something with them.
thinking of the massive PS2 tower labeled 'tool' or the PS3 reference kit in that rackmount-like case, the original xbox 360 mac or any of those various nintendo machines in PC cases we used as doorstops and to prop up monitors around the office after phasing them out. they must be worth like..... millions?! :D

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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby mapesdhs » Thu Nov 09, 2017 2:53 am

As the title says GIJoe, they'd be worth whatever someone is willing to pay. ;)

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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby pentium » Fri Nov 10, 2017 9:01 pm

IIRC, the reason machines like the C65 fetch so much is that they are true limited production machines. They were all prototypes. Until now I was not aware a machine that not only worked (ALL the ASIC's were present and the ROMs would function) but was also as complete as this one even existed.

When you look at the price of something you need to take into account three things:
-Industrial demand: Companies who for financial reasons require older components to maintain legacy machinery
-Historical demand: Institutions, companies or museums looking for components or specimens to add to or maintain an existing specimen
-Hobbyist demand: Popularity amongst a group of people who share similar ideas about a company and/or product

One or all three of the above can sway the price of an object.

-Paper tape punch units are still hundreds of dollars used because of high demand with older milling machinery.
-Xerox's early GUI products like the Alto, Star or Daybreak were peculiar first steps in what the first commercial concepts of a GUI might be. (or would not)
-Apple's compact macs are expensive because OH MY GODDDD IT'S STEVE JOBS! THIS IS HIS BABY HE DESIGNED THIS IN HIS GARAGE WITH HIS BARE HANDSIN1959IREMEMBERTHISASAIDDIN SCHOOLTHISWASSOAWESOME.....

Stupidity alone or some statistical price analysis tool (I'm looking at you Terapeak) cannot explain it.

In relation to the C65....

-Industrial Demand: "We need this complete machine at all costs in order to reverse engineer and remanufacture new machines."
-Historical Demand: "This machine is immaculate. I want this machine procured for documenting and storing under glass in the main hall."
-Hobbyist Demand: "Wow! This will look amazing next to my Bill Gates autographed Altair 8800 and Steve Jobs autographed copy of NeXTWORLD! Good thing Google just gave me that promotion!"

Comparing the value of an SGI no compared to ten years form now is....kinda a poor example.
It's like being surprised that the SPARCstation 1 I got ten years ago was worth nothing and ten years later it's STILL worth nothing! ;)
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby robespierre » Fri Nov 10, 2017 10:55 pm

Very true, and I'll add a very important price factor, which is whether an item is the last or greatest version that was produced. It makes a machine much more desirable to hobbyists because they know it is better than the others of the same type or platform. For example, the Macintosh IIfx and SE/30 are worth much more than their antecedents the II and the SE, respectively. The C-65 would be the last and greatest 8-bit computer, which is impressive.

The SparcStation 1 is unloved precisely because there were better machines from the same series.

This one factor doesn't always overcome the others: an Apple IIgs is a later and greater computer than the Apple IIe, but examples of the former often sell for less than the latter. The supply of the older machine seems to be more constrained. Upgrades for the IIgs like the Transwarp or Vulcan are priced very high.
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Irinikus » Fri Nov 10, 2017 11:10 pm

Your right, you even see this with SGI machines, a quad 1GHz Tezro node board VS the quad 800MHz (Huge price difference there) or the dual 600MHz Octane2 CPU module for example.

No SGI machine will ever fetch this get this type of price though, as good examples of these machines are just too numerous.

Who cares about price anyway (you pay what you need to pay to get the machine which is of interest to you), SGI machines are some of the most interesting machines ever produced and being able to experience and play with them is what it's all about isn't it? :D
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Trippynet » Sat Nov 11, 2017 3:52 am

Irinikus wrote:Your right, you even see this with SGI machines, a quad 1GHz Tezro node board VS the quad 800MHz (Huge price difference there) or the dual 600MHz Octane2 CPU module for example.


True, but supply does play a part. For example, the R10k 195MHz option for Indigo2 is not too expensive as plenty were produced. In fact, the R4400 250MHz option sells for more these days in a lot of cases as there's still commercial demand (often used in medical scanners I believe), and supply is poorer. Of course on the other hand, Max Impact is expensive these days as there's not many of them around.
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby GIJoe » Sat Nov 11, 2017 8:30 am

well it baffled me for sure because -

- it appears that - going by comments on youtube under the relevant videos - it is not a super rare unicorn one-of-a-kind for the collectors
- it's a prototype for a low-end machine from back then - no fancy hardware, no particularly interesting design. i take it it's some kind of C64 with a few bolted-on extensions. perhaps something like a C128 but with 8 bit colors?
- it is not known for useful and/or unique software. well, there seems to be a demo disk at least
- i don't think it was ever some high profile project either, not a machine you were desperately waiting for in the early 90's. C64 and 8 bit machines in general were entry level and kinda sidelined by that time. Amiga all the way! (and Atari ST for the suckers ;) )
- afaik it's not linked to anything 'cool' (think Amiga 1000 and Andy Warhol or the like)

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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Irinikus » Sat Nov 11, 2017 8:35 am

It baffled me for the same reasons, but I suppose if the person who bought it is happy, well.....
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Trippynet » Sat Nov 11, 2017 8:36 am

Irinikus wrote:It baffled me for the same reasons, but I suppose if the person who bought it is happy, well.....


Until their partner sees their bank statement anyway :)
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby mapesdhs » Sat Nov 11, 2017 6:46 pm

Of course it's also possible the higher bids were fake, just people along for the ride, etc. Happens a lot on ebay, people addicted to just winning auctions, but they never pay up.
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby Irinikus » Sat Nov 11, 2017 9:58 pm

If you look at the bid history on the item, it looks like there were quite a few people willing to pay a ridiculously high price for this item, even if you exclude the last few bids which drove the price up ridiculously.

eBay Item Bid History.pdf
(316.27 KiB) Downloaded 5 times


eBay Item Bid History with automatic bids.pdf
(334.58 KiB) Downloaded 1 time
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Re: An item is only ever worth what someone is willing to pay... :)

Unread postby mapesdhs » Sun Nov 19, 2017 4:46 pm

But then, that's my point, ridiculous is in the eye of the beholder. :D One might think someone is crazy for buying a very famous painting for $20M, but if they then sell it on for $25, well then not so crazy. Or if the painting is in some way very meaningful to them, and they can afford it, then nobody has the right to judge, it's their money. Who knows, maybe one of the high bidders was someone who worked on the original project. I think it's more likely though that this type of item has now simply matured into the category of being worthwhile investments. I know that many of the 80s tech items I bought a few years ago are now even on ebay selling for twice as much or more.

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I'm working on a charitable PC build for the Learn Engineering YouTube channel. Please PM/email/call if you'd like to contribute!
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