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Old 12-05-2012, 02:21 AM   #26 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by mfw13 View Post
I guess it depends on what you consider expensive....after all, twenty years ago box prices equated to about 3-4 cents a card (Topps) and 8 cents a card (Upper Deck) and you could usually complete sets by buying 2 boxes of a product.

Today, even though there are products with relatively low box prices, the fact that there are so few cards per box, along with the fact that most sets have SP's, means that trying to complete a set through buying boxes is prohibitively expensive.

Take OPC hockey, for example. You get 256 cards per box (fewer than 200 of which are base cards), to try to complete a set of 500 base cards and 100 SP's which are seeded 1:2. So to try to complete the base set only would require a minimum of three boxes (i.e. ~$100) and to complete the base set plus SP's would require a minimum of seven boxes (~$200-250).

Compare that to twenty years ago, when you could complete most sets for about $30-40.
Fair points all around, those cards were also crappy card stock, silk screened images and came with a stick of something resembling gum in the wrapper with baseball and football. I do agree the prices have gone up a lot, but it's no surpise, everything is more expensive now.
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Old 12-05-2012, 02:37 AM   #27 (permalink)
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I think it's great that there are so many sets. It gives all collectors(rich or not so) a chance to pick up nice cards. I think if we only had sets like SPA, Contenders, and Exquisite, you would have to shell out so much money to buy singles and I think you'll lose many collectors that way. The lower and mid-end products are what helps keep this hobby afloat.
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Old 12-05-2012, 03:12 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Fair points all around, those cards were also crappy card stock, silk screened images and came with a stick of something resembling gum in the wrapper with baseball and football. I do agree the prices have gone up a lot, but it's no surpise, everything is more expensive now.
This is the same card stock that Topps currently uses for Heritage and Magic, products which sell for $70-80 per box of 192 cards (i.e. about 40 cents per raw card). Nicer card stock is more expensive, but not that much more expensive.

The bigger reason, I think, is the tendency of manufacturers to stuff products full of stuff most collectors don't want. Even sets like Heritage and Magic have umpteen parallels, memorabilia cards, autographs, etc., most of which are not wanted by collectors and do not add value (although they are used to justify a higher box price).

Take 2012 Topps Magic, for example, since this a football forum.

You've got EIGHT different autograph subsets...FOUR different relic subsets...FIVE different insert sets...THREE different parallel sets...and 20% of the base set is short printed.

And since only 10-20% of the players included in the autograph checklist are actually players anybody would actually want an autograph of (all short-printed or super-short-printed, of course), you're chances of actually pulling an autograph you might want are minimal.

Now what would collectors like me who like "retro" sets like Magic actually want:

-no inserts/relics/parallels at all
-one subset of HOF/star/rookie autos consisting of the 25-30 best players in the set
-no more than 10% SP's in the base set
-the ability to complete the set, including SP's, for less than $100 of wax
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