Dmitry

Has the bottom fallen out of the Mosaic market?

206 posts in this topic

because of the permanence of the media - and the unavailability of so much that I own, in equivalent quality, as downloads; too much historical material is only available in inferior quality, and this will only get worse.

attitudes will change. People grow up. I actually think the download-culture has a very disposable, and hence changeable, attitude.

 

But if an entire generation grows up without ever being inside a CD store or even having more than a handful of actual CDs (and thinking that the ones in their parents' collection is just old fashioned), then why would they migrate back to CD?  I just don't see it at all.  Generation Z or whatever they will be called certainly won't be buying CDs.

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Not sure I'm ready to do any generalizing on bottoms, middles, or tops of the Mosaic market.  I own between 25 and 30 of the large CD Mosaic sets and probably 15 of the 3-CD Selects.  I'm seeing prices all over the map on these based on desirability...I saw the Nat King Cole set at Dusty Groove today on sale for $600.  Clearly no bottom in sight here.  I am purchasing LP Mosaic sets and pricing appears to require you to do your homework.  I just purchased the 4-LP Complete Pacific Recordings of the Chet Baker Quartet with Russ Freeman an hour ago at Dusty Groove for $120. Copy is listed "near mint" and box, LPS, and booklet in nice shape.  There are currently two of the same set offered at Amazon by secondary sellers...one for $260, the other for $310.  Also two sets offered on eBay...one Buy Now for $200 the other with days to go with a minimum bid looking for $190.  Also two sets of the same Mosaic set offered by European sellers on discogs....one for $166 and the other for $178...both without shipping.  Looks to me like a healthy resale market for Mosaic LP sets especially with prices fluctuating wildly.  I'm looking to purchase more LP sets because I happen to like the media.  But I'm not likely to try and resell any of my sets...LP or CD in an effort to make money.  

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Interesting seeing that list of sold Mosaics on ebay. It seems that the relative value of sets has held up (e.g. Thad/Mel still high, Curtis Fuller still low) even though the prices have dropped.

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people like novelty, and they also never saw LPs before the (temporary) boom.

Mark my words, and let us talk in 10 years.

and also, remember, I'm the guy who predicted the McGovern victory.

 

 

Edited by AllenLowe

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CD is my format of choice. I've said before in threads like this: if i have the CD i can rip it to whatever digital format i please, as many times as i please and i always have the physical CD there on my shelf if or when i need it. Just my preference. And again, from the most major of the majors to the most independent of the independents: for whatever reason they keep putting out CDs, and as long as they do i'll keep buying them.

I don't know what the future holds but there is a precedent (aside from the recent vinyl trend) for a generation to get in to collecting a physical format that they didn't grow up with and that basically got trashed by the generation that did: videogames. We all traded away our old NES and SNES cartridges like they were nothing. Nobody wanted them. Now the collectors market is booming, partly from older guys trying to re-collect their youth, but there's also massive enthusiasm from kids that didn't grow up in that era. And you could argue that cartridges = vinyl, but early CD based systems like Playstation, Sega Saturn and the Dreamcast are also highly collectible. And it's all downloadable, just like music. 

 

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CD is my format of choice. I've said before in threads like this: if i have the CD i can rip it to whatever digital format i please, as many times as i please and i always have the physical CD there on my shelf if or when i need it. Just my preference. And again, from the most major of the majors to the most independent of the independents: for whatever reason they keep putting out CDs, and as long as they do i'll keep buying them.

I don't know what the future holds but there is a precedent (aside from the recent vinyl trend) for a generation to get in to collecting a physical format that they didn't grow up with and that basically got trashed by the generation that did: videogames. We all traded away our old NES and SNES cartridges like they were nothing. Nobody wanted them. Now the collectors market is booming, partly from older guys trying to re-collect their youth, but there's also massive enthusiasm from kids that didn't grow up in that era. And you could argue that cartridges = vinyl, but early CD based systems like Playstation, Sega Saturn and the Dreamcast are also highly collectible. And it's all downloadable, just like music. 

 

Accidentally posted without having logged in. Interesting that it'll let you do that now!

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What I don't get is a renewed interest in cassettes! They were a terrible format to begin with for any number of reasons. Why bring them back?

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What I don't get is a renewed interest in cassettes! They were a terrible format to begin with for any number of reasons. Why bring them back?

I think because they capture the fun of music, and of people not taking it all so seriously.  Sort of like Instagram filters.

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I saw the Nat King Cole set at Dusty Groove today on sale for $600.  Clearly no bottom in sight here.   

Looking at eBay, there are two copies of the NKC set on CD with respective BINs of $899 and $999 and a sealed LP set with an opening bid of $750 and a $1500 BIN. But if you look at the completed listings, all of the recently sold copies of the CD set (at least the ones with visible prices - there are a couple of "best offer accepted" ones) are between $300-400. That would seem to indicate that the real market value is a lot closer to $300-400 than $600-700, significantly less than it was just a couple of years ago.

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What I don't get is a renewed interest in cassettes! They were a terrible format to begin with for any number of reasons. Why bring them back?

Cassettes are bought by today's youths, students and such, who are driving 20-25 year old cars with tape radios. This was related to me the other week by a record store owner, who says he sells at least one pre-recorded tape a day.

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I saw the Nat King Cole set at Dusty Groove today on sale for $600.  Clearly no bottom in sight here.   

Looking at eBay, there are two copies of the NKC set on CD with respective BINs of $899 and $999 and a sealed LP set with an opening bid of $750 and a $1500 BIN. But if you look at the completed listings, all of the recently sold copies of the CD set (at least the ones with visible prices - there are a couple of "best offer accepted" ones) are between $300-400. That would seem to indicate that the real market value is a lot closer to $300-400 than $600-700, significantly less than it was just a couple of years ago.

The eBay price for this set 10-12 years ago was about $1,000, perhaps more. So yes, the cream of the then Mosaic oop crop has devalued over time.

Edited by Dmitry

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What I don't get is a renewed interest in cassettes! They were a terrible format to begin with for any number of reasons. Why bring them back?

 

Cassettes are bought by today's youths, students and such, who are driving 20-25 year old cars with tape radios. This was related to me the other week by a record store owner, who says he sells at least one pre-recorded tape a day.

I figured it had to be something like that. I've been seeing up and coming Indie bands selling their music on cassettes lately.

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Looking to the East, Japan and South Korea continue to be huge markets for physical music product.  As a percentage of music purchased, physical media is about 85% in Japan.

Indeed, jazz reissue CD's are alive and well in Japan.  Blue Note just had a bunch of interesting titles reissued the last two months there.  When's the last time they reissued catalog titles in the US?  2009 or something like that?

No, much more recently.  This year, they issued the Miles, Coltrane and Clifford Brown titles, plus all of the LP reissues.

I don't count those three, they were just bogus repackagings of easily available stuff for newbies.  Don't keep up with LP  issues, so will take your word on them.

Edited by felser

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people like novelty, and they also never saw LPs before the (temporary) boom.

Mark my words, and let us talk in 10 years.

and also, remember, I'm the guy who predicted the McGovern victory.

 

 

Yeah, but does that mean the LP "came back"? No, of course not. It became a fetish, found a small but proud niche audience, but it didn't come back in any way. 

 

Ten years from now, cd sales likely won't even be half of what they were last year. 

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Looking to the East, Japan and South Korea continue to be huge markets for physical music product.  As a percentage of music purchased, physical media is about 85% in Japan.

Indeed, jazz reissue CD's are alive and well in Japan.  Blue Note just had a bunch of interesting titles reissued the last two months there.  When's the last time they reissued catalog titles in the US?  2009 or something like that?

No, much more recently.  This year, they issued the Miles, Coltrane and Clifford Brown titles, plus all of the LP reissues.

I don't count those three, they were just bogus repackagings of easily available stuff for newbies.  Don't keep up with LP  issues, so will take your word on them.

List of BN U.S. vinyl reissues.

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people like novelty, and they also never saw LPs before the (temporary) boom.

Mark my words, and let us talk in 10 years.

and also, remember, I'm the guy who predicted the McGovern victory.

 

 

Yeah, but does that mean the LP "came back"? No, of course not. It became a fetish, found a small but proud niche audience, but it didn't come back in any way. 

 

I have a cousin who owns two, maybe even three records, but does not have, nor is planning to purchase a turntable, or a stereo system. It IS a fetish thing...also.

 

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What I don't get is a renewed interest in cassettes! They were a terrible format to begin with for any number of reasons. Why bring them back?

 

Cassettes are bought by today's youths, students and such, who are driving 20-25 year old cars with tape radios. This was related to me the other week by a record store owner, who says he sells at least one pre-recorded tape a day.

Cassettes were a wonderful format outselling vinyl albums during most of the 80s and were only challenged by CD's later in the decade. It's a myth that everyone was still digging vinyl in some space age audiophile bachelor pad. The truth was, the humble tape had already taken over, people were already sick of the crackles on vinyl and the way the longer playing records had terrible sound towards the end of each side. Cassettes were king in the 80s and all the rest is historic revisionism.

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That still doesn't mean cassettes were any great shakes, though. The car stereo, which many models were coming standard with cassette players from the factory by the mid-80's, the rise of portable stereo's, and that wonderful little invention from Sony made the cassette the desired medium. 

But, truth be told, they sounded pretty bad, and the best sound quality you got was on the very first play through. And they degraded quickly after that. 

But yes, the portability factor negated most of its flaws. 

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Only one thing worse than cassettes and that is 8 track !

Thankfully, Mosaic didn't dabble in either format..

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Are we talking pre-recorded cassettes, or blank cassettes? I found 'pre-recorded' generally to be cheaply made and quickly worn out and would be surprised if they really outsold vinyl. I rarely bought them, that's for sure. There were 'high quality' blank cassettes from Maxell and others that supposedly had great qualities and if you had an audiophile deck then they were decent. And obviously, if you wanted to make a mix tape then they were the only option. But bottom line was that skinny tape didn't hold up well with repeated use, especially if it was used in boomboxes, cheap car stereos or Walkmen.

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Only one thing worse than cassettes and that is 8 track !

Thankfully, Mosaic didn't dabble in either format..

I'm not entirely sure you could say which was worse, as they were both pretty bad sound quality-wise. Cassettes were slightly easier to navigate...

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Are we talking pre-recorded cassettes, or blank cassettes? I found 'pre-recorded' generally to be cheaply made and quickly worn out and would be surprised if they really outsold vinyl. I rarely bought them, that's for sure. There were 'high quality' blank cassettes from Maxell and others that supposedly had great qualities and if you had an audiophile deck then they were decent. And obviously, if you wanted to make a mix tape then they were the only option. But bottom line was that skinny tape didn't hold up well with repeated use, especially if it was used in boomboxes, cheap car stereos or Walkmen.

Right on the money. 

Maxell did have some pretty sturdy blank tapes. What was their big boy, the XL-II, or something like that? 

But yes, the pre-recorded stuff was very dubious in quality. And as I noted previously, they started degrading from the first play through. 

In the 80's it wasn't uncommon for me to end up with at least three copies of any given album I listened to frequently. The best practice was to buy an album on cassette and then dub it to a blank of your choice. Some folks swore by TDK and Memorex, but Maxell ate them both for lunch, IMO. 

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New pre-recorded tapes of albums massively out sold vinyl during the middle 1980s. There's objective evidence in terms of sales figures to back this up.

There's also, as was stated in several post back, strong support for the position that the CD is the best hard medium for delivering the remasters art.

We might not like these inconvenient truths....

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all seriousness aside, my prediction is that, due to rarity, certain genres of CD will be very valuable in 10 years.

Of course, I also predicted the Beatles would get back together.

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New pre-recorded tapes of albums massively out sold vinyl during the middle 1980s. There's objective evidence in terms of sales figures to back this up.

There's also, as was stated in several post back, strong support for the position that the CD is the best hard medium for delivering the remasters art.

We might not like these inconvenient truths....

Well................OK, then. But I still think they were a lousy format. 

I'm fine with CDs and would never buy vinyl again. Mainly because I have no room for LPs or shelf space for a turntable, but also because I don't miss having to turn over (or change) an album every 20 minutes.

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