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Rip Off Britian!

Discussion in 'Movie Forum' started by Phil Hinton, Jan 24, 2001.

  1. Phil Hinton

    Phil Hinton
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    With more people buying DVD than ever before and the low cost of producing DVD,should we be paying less for R2.

    CD has been over priced for years and i fear the same will be the case with R2 DVD.

    In my opinion DVD should cost no more than £14.99 a disc for new releases, and back catalogue £11.99.

    And as for those rip off b*stards Fox and Disney,does anyone actually buy their discs?

    Deals like 2 for £25 do help, but these ars short lived,we should see cheaper prices as a whole.

    We should make a stand over the prices of discs in an attempt to get them down to a more reasonable price.I;m almost certain that the studios would make even more money than thay are now because more people would buy into it.

    (i have made a similar post on a similar thread,but felt it needed a more direct Thread.)

    Your thoughts?
     
  2. Guest

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    I agree! However,there are two major points at the minute I believe that makes this very hard to swallow.
    1.The variances in price one can find between high street stores selling the same titles can range between £3 to £5 per disc.
    2.Probably the hardest pill to swallow was the figures quoted on how region 2 dvds have sold over the Christmas period(sales going into orbit).

    IT'S A LONG ROAD WITH NO TURNING...AND THERE ARE PLENTY OF BENDERS ON THE WAY....!

    martinc

     
  3. Black 5

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    If you're not happy with prices, then don't pay what's being asked". We are not being forced to do this, but if retailers have what you really want, you're going to cough up right?

    Competition from etailers has been successful in keeping a lid on prices to a certain extent, but as I've said before, I never expected having a hobby like this was going to be cheap.

    I've usually bought from express.com and their service has always been great. Even recent reports of their supposed financial difficulties have been overdone I believe.

    As an experiment, I tried two different suppliers some weeks ago, Play247 and A&BSounds, both on recommendations seen on this forum. IMO, their service sucks in both cases - express beat play247 by 10 days and I gave up with A&B Sounds - neither had any stock of Princess Mononoke when express had nearly a thousand discs and dispatched straight away. If express are supposed to be in financial difficulty then how do they manage to maintain healthy stock levels when their competitors can't?

    At the end of the day, I'd rather pay a bit more and get the service than wonder in which week my order will arrive, but we all have freedom to choose I suppose.
     
  4. RanjanB

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    Curry's are doing a good deal on R2 discs.

    Buy any 3 and get the cheapest one free !

    I bought Gladiator, Matrix & Elisabeth and paid £39 for the lot (thats £13 a disc).

    This is cheapest deal I have seen anywhere.
     
  5. Duncan Harvey

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    People must try and get out of the mindset that if its cheap to produce, then it should be sold at a cheap price.

    Re manufacturing costs - I dont doubt that pressing discs is pretty cheap, but the encoding and authoring of a DVD is a lot more expensive than merely duplicating a tape.

    Secondly - DVDs are a "better" product than VHS tape. The "market price" for VHS prerecorded tapes was established in the mid-late 1980s at £9.99 with the occasional high profile film going at £12.99 (I remember the Blues Brothers being rereleased at this price point in 1989/90 and thinking that this was because it was a high profile film).

    When VAT was increased in 1991 this provided record and video companies with the excuse they needed to abandon the £9.99 price point and push prices generally up to £10.99 for a tape. CDs generally breached the £10.99 or £11.99 level at this time as well.

    Once the psychological "over a tenner" barrier had been breached the price of a prerecorded tape has gradually nudged up - look at how CIC raised the Trek prices to £12.99 when Voyager came out, and how Disney has always gone for high prices - £16.99

    The point of this history lesson? - well as DVD is a premium product when compared to VHS, then the software producers have priced it accordingly. They still make money on VHS so why jeopardise this market by having "cheap" DVDs.

    Hence if your VHS tape is £12.99 or £13.99 then your DVD will be between £16-£20.

    I suspect this is where they'll stay, with only some back catalogue or budget rereleases coming in at a lower price point. Certainly with perceived high profile discs expect to see £19.99 as a minimum. Remember compared to some things - look at the price of video games, high street DVDs look cheap.

    I must say however that the only way the shops seem to actually sell any discs is by using the multiple with a discount marketing promotion.

    At the end of the day however - who cares? Those of us who are into home cinema will almost certainly have more R1s than R2s and if you really want a film in PAL - get the R4 version - almost guaranteed to be cheaper.
     
  6. Mr.D

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    I just don't buy region2 any more. Not because of the inflated prices. I do resent the prices but if I really wanted a film right there and then the price difference of even 5quid between R1 and R2 wouldn't stop me.

    I am fed up waiting for region2 release dates and going in to HMV Virgin Smiths etc, on the day only to be told they don't have it in yet or its been put back or they should be in but havn't arrived. This happened with GITS , Tigger Story , hell I've lost count.

    Especially galling when you could have had the region1 version months ago and for less money. If I'm gonna get screwed I want to be kissed first otherwise phhhhht!

     
  7. Ars longa, vita brevis

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    how cheap are dvd's to press, must be very cheap, 20p? lower, perhaps depending on the size of the run.

    Encoding and authoring, agrre a little, but if video pirates can make their own menu's etc for star wars and films don't have to be downmixed, it cant add greatly to the cost.

    finally, price discrepancies with different shops

    my friend saw a coupla of months ago in woolworths austin powers tswsm for £30!

    sells now in hmv for a tenner

    don't really know how they could justify hat price.



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    but he got bored of that so changed to some latin sh*t
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  8. Guest

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    Let's not kid ourselves guys the fact is when r2 discs where in their infancy the general topic on price was "our prices will come down in the future when support for region 2 increases"....This comment was said in many versions in different magazines.So what has happened...prices have remained much the same.As to paying an extra £5 for the same disc whether region 1 or 2 ...I'm sorry but look at how many r1 mod ads and ads for discs in region 1 and this may answer this theory....

    martinc
     
  9. Phil Hinton

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    Duncan,
    This is the average british attitude!
    explain to me that if it costs so much and is a premium product how can retailers make any profits with their 2 for £30 or similar deals.
    Basically we ARE being ripped off.Studios could sell discs at £5 less a disc and still make a profit!
    Why are R4 cheaper then?Is it maybe because in britian we pay more for everything we buy because the marketing men have succeeded at telling people like yourself that it is a premium product,so it warrants a higher price.DVD is not a premium product that costs a lot to produce!Laserdisc was apremium product that cost a huge amount of money with limited runs and warranted the higher price.But even saying that Pioneer managed to release them for £19.99.
    We were assured by the DVD software committe that prices would fall as it came more main stream-i dont see prices falling even with 180,000 copies of gladiator alone being sold.
     
  10. desade

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    I do get annoyed at the tabloidesque notion of a "rip off britain" and people always moaning about how much "we" pay for things.

    Nobody makes anybody buy something that they don't want to. Shops will charge whatever they think people will pay. Shops do not sell things at higher prices because they like keeping them on the shelf. I have seen people pay over the odds for discs in HMV, Smiths, everywhere in fact.

    I am also annoyed about people harping on about R1 being better than R2. Of course it is. It is like saying that America is bigger than Britain or water is wet. We are a secondary concern to the film industry and anyone who tells you differently is lying. Even so-called British films are often made primarily for the American market.
     
  11. Guest

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    With the greatest respect, if shops will charge whatever they think people will pay for dvd's then why is it your getting annoyed especially when one can only assume you buy region one at a cheaper price....?

    martinc

     
  12. Digikid

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    In certain Industries of the UK, we are being ripped off, I shall give you an example...I worked for a sports distributor, one item we sold for £3.92 to a well known sports retailer, they sold it in the shops for £14.99!! Different industry I know but its a typical example that if major chains, that have huge buying power, can cut costs and increase price points they will!!

    The general ethos of the interests of the customer have been pushed aside only to be replaced by Profit and Greed!!

    I only buy from high street retailers if i have to but buy mainly from the net, needless to say that most of my DVD's are region 1, so who has lost out here?, the high street shops! From me they have lost out on appoximately £800.00 worth of turnover (from one customer), if i have done it then other people have done it. The only way to hurt these retailers is by taking our custom abroad, which we are doing. The average Joe off the street will go into HMV, WHSmiths and but his DVD for £15-20 etc, unless he/she is educated they will not know any different.

    The answer, I believe, lies with us to vote with our feet and go elsewhere, everybody wants a good deal which is out there, we just have to look!!
     
  13. Guest

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    WELL SAID DIGIKID!

    "The Truth Shall Shall Set You Free"!
    martinc

     
  14. LV426

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    Agree! Vote with your wallet. In all probability, I'll be buying my Terminator SE from Australia where it will cost me about £15 delivered. I don't have the patience to wait for this "new release" to go through the usual cycle in the UK of £19-99 > £15-99 > buy one get one half price etc.
     
  15. Mikeonfreeserve

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    HMV,WHSmiths,Virgin,Boots et al are gonna get their collective corporate a**** kicked over DVD and other media prices.Everyone I know buys DVDs online and only uses the stores to mooch about and look at a few cases.Look what's happening to Marks and Spencer.It doesn't take a marketing guru to see what people want.And when will retailers learn to differentiat between the male and female shoppers needs.Blokes want gadgets cheap.Period.
     
  16. charles

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    Its very simple,u.k.retail chains take the following view regarding dvd;-its not mass market,lets make people pay for the priviledge...thats why the dvd`s are cheaper if you buy more because they are trying to shift volume on a smaller markup..
    But the truth is that u.k.dvd`s should be priced at 13 pounds(unless special editions/2 disc sets etc..).
    But your not getting a deal if you buy 3 discs for 39 pounds-your just paying what their worth.(lets not talk about vat-the u.s. don`t pay vat!)
    It is a rip-off in Britain-because we are stupid enough to pay the prices-don`t pay `em and vote with your pocket....

    As an aside,i remember reading an article about when they put the bus fares up in Japan,there were riots-bus`s were turned over-in short ..chaos..but guess what?...the government put the bus fares down again....
    Another time,whilst in Florida,i heard two rich old girls having a real argument about the fact that the state tax had gone up by 2 cents!!!...
    What happens in britain?..we moan but do nothing,thats why the seleco ht200 is 6k and 4.5k in Germany-as an example...
    We should stop being mugs and boycott region 2 .
     
  17. desade

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    Hey, the way it works is...
    If you cannot afford it, do not buy it. Works for me, everytime!

    I didn't buy into laserdisc, because I couldn't afford the discs. Simple. Maybe I should have and then spent ages moaning about how there was some sort of conspiracy that made the discs so expensive and how life just isn't fair.

    Fact is, people can, and do, pay over the odds for stuff. If retail can sell it, then it will. I recently saw someone buy lethal weapon 1-4 for 22.99 per disc. So what? Good luck to him.

    Most of us on this forum shop around for stuff, but it is a fact of life that some people have more money than others to throw away. Why shouldn't retail make a profit where it can? It is called free market. You do not have to pay over the odds, so don't. We all know where the bargains are to be found! I really do not see the problem...but no doubt someone can enlighten me?
     
  18. PoochJD

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    Howdy,

    I more or less agree with Desade. Having said that, my collection is still about 60% Region 2 and only 40% Region 1. This isn't for any particular reason, it's simply how my collection has worked out.

    Essentially, if I can get the film in the high street, now, and the disc is a good print, right soundtrack, correct ratio and has some reasonable extras, I'll buy it there and then. The main reason I import material is not solely for pricing reasons, but due to a) less or no censorship, b) more choice of material that wouldn't normally get released here in the UK (Anime, foreign-language titles, banned movies, etc) and c) the quality of the Limited Editions and/or Boxed Sets, as well as d) the date-of-release being far earlier.

    I still think Region 2 DVD's suck, a lot of the time, and champion Region 1 to all and sundry, but my collection still has this 60/40 anomally. Oh well, c'est la vie, as they say in Slovakia.... LOL ;-)

    Pooch
     
  19. Duncan Harvey

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    THX1138

    You refer to "people like myself" well thanks. Presumably thats why my collection is about 90% R1 rather than 90% R2.

    I think that DVDs are too expensive. Like many other goods - there is a huge retail margin. Although lets not forget that we do have to pay 17.5% VAT on R2 discs when theres no sales tax or GST on imports of R1 and R4.

    I was merely trying to point out the marketing theory behind DVDs, in that they are presented as superior to VHS and therefore priced accordingly.

    People get too emotional about cost/price relationships. As I said before - theres often no linear relationship at all between the two. So if DVDs are cheap to make, it doesnt follow that they should be sold cheaply. The copyright holders/producers have a perfect right to get what they can for their product. Similarly with the retailers - if the market will accept a £20 price point then thats what you'll get. DVDs are in the same sort of market as CDs, videogames and tapes. Look at the prices of these goods and you can seen how DVD fits neatly into the pricing profile.

    As for the 2 for £25 type deals - well yes, the profit isnt as big as two separate purchases but the shops arent stupid - they know that they'll get people spending £25 when perhaps without a deal they wouldnt have spent anything at all.

    To be honest - the only R2 stuff I buy is TV material which you cant get on R1, or some of the "Film on Four" type stuff which is unlikely to come out in R1. As for price - well I usually buy mail order (as I currently live in Amsterdam), so I generally get a reasonable deal (often have the discs shipped to my parents house in the UK).
     
  20. Duncan Harvey

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    well although the USA dont pay VAT, there usually is sales tax. It takes a bit of getting used to as the prices in the shops are always before sales tax - which can be a little disconcerting.

    I must say though that shops like Borders (having been to the one in Boston a few times) generally sell below the recommended retail price - eg picked up the 2 disc Seven for $24.99 on the day of release.

    We just dont have the same discounting culture in the UK.

    BTW having just checked - my collection (800 discs) clocks in at 79% R1, 18% R2 and 3% R4
     
  21. Duncan Harvey

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    I think Charles, that looking at the sheer number of discs out there and the retail space being allocated, that R2 DVD has achieved what LD never managed - critical mass.

    And as for profits - thats what the retailer is in business for. They arent breaking any laws, and they can justifiably charge what they want. Its not as if they are charging £30 per disc.

    My own personal view is that discs tend to be too expensive, and that I will only buy from retail shops if theres a deal. But I'm not blind to the realities behind retailing.

    The difference is that we are relatively sophisticated consumers who know theres a choice out there - ie R1 or R4. The "great British public" on the other hand dont know of this or dont care. If they are aware of DVD then they are probably "just" aware that its better than VHS, and that its new. Hence they are already primed to pay a premium. After all this is what happened to CD nearly 20 years ago.

    And lets be honest - does it matter to us - no. The critical mass means that DVD is here to stay, so we can cherry pick the best deals from retail and the net. If some fools want to pay £20 or more for a single bare bones disc then let them.
     
  22. charles

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    Duncan,its a sad truth that retailers can charge what they like(no r.r.p.as such..)but contrary to what you say,this does not equate to good commerce.
    as i said earlier-using laserdisc as an example-the pricing structure can be all important to whether or not a format achieves mass market penetration.
    Remember another factor-dvd is a non-starter in japan where hdtv and hdtv recording at 1250 lines is now commonplace(what do they care about a 500 line variant..)-its very popular in europe because of no proposed hdtv standard-in short its selling to a captive audience who are clutching at the straws of quality offered.

    In short,they know we want it-so they are making us pay through the nose for it.

    vote with your pocket and only pay what is reasonable to you-but dont accept the ethic that retailers should charge what they like-they shouldn`t.(people that do accept this can only blame themselves when u.k.audio video kit stays the dearest in the world..)

    They should charge a fair and reasonable price for the quality on offer...end of story..
     
  23. charles

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    I think what desade says is right but there is a difference between a reasonable profit and an exhorbitant one.
    I want region 2 to take off,i dont want to fiddle about ordering r1 discs over the internet waiting a week-i want to go in a shop,have a good look-then buy..
    But why should we be ripped off for this choice?
    if you remember,we had the same scenario with laserdisc-far too overpriced in the u.k.-and it killed it stone dead.(yet the tradgedy was in its demise you could pick discs up for under 20 pounds!!)..and you ask yourselves...why didn`t they sell `em for 20 pounds to start with?

    Region 2 dvd`s should be no more than 13/14 pounds-i would urge people to pay that and no more-you never know,maybe the retailers will get the message and realise they are selling bundles of these discs and very few of the more expensive ones!..and standardise the price...
     

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