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Shocking price rises!!??


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I just wanted to express my shock and indeed anger at the astronomical ( pun intended ) price rises for Telescope equipment during recent months!!?? It all started on Ebay, and yesterday i noticed all the retail shops online have also massively increased their prices!!?? It was/is already such an expensive hobby, so i don't understand why this is happening ?? 

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Nobody likes price rises, but I can't help but feel we've lived through an unusual 'low price' period, which may have caused us to expect more for less. Forty years ago a 4" refractor would be a scope

Still a lot better than the astronomical world I started out in the early 70's. My first full time job in early 1975 was £15 ppw at that time a Dixons special 60mm refractor was close on £30,there rea

Showing?!  Sounds like it might have a big neon sign over the top saying "Get your naivety here" whilst a full marching band complete with majorettes parade around it playing "When the saints go march

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What sort of increases were you particularly shocked about?

I am afraid with covid and the fact many of our equipment comes from China has meant a shortage of many items which does inevitably lead to price rises but I didn't think the suppliers I use had hiked them ridiculously, but I admit apart form a new Astro camera and filter wheel have not really bought anything of huge cost anyway.
And for some stuff Brexit may not of helped with transport costs and paperwork.

Ebay I am afraid will milk the situation and do try to ask some crazy prices, I also tend to stay clear as unless new you have no idea about the quality of items.

Unfortunately it can be an expensive hobby unless buying only 2nd hand and even then that market does maintain a fair percentage of the cost of new.

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22 minutes ago, Tomatobro said:

Take a look in the retailers section, price rises for explanation

Thanks, i will do that my friend. I am so annoyed by these rises, bc as we all know, Astrophotography and visual Astronomy is already pretty expensive, so these price rises will further reduce the ability of certain people to afford entering into this beautiful Hobby!!?? I noticed Ebay prices started rising some months ago, then yesterday the retail sector shot up in prices too!!?? For example, the extremely popular SW 200p was priced at £289 a few days ago, in a very well known retailer here in UK, then yesterday the same 200p is now priced at £399!!?? Thats a shocker impo!!?? Thats roughly 30% price increase!!?? 

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26 minutes ago, teoria_del_big_bang said:

What sort of increases were you particularly shocked about?

I am afraid with covid and the fact many of our equipment comes from China has meant a shortage of many items which does inevitably lead to price rises but I didn't think the suppliers I use had hiked them ridiculously, but I admit apart form a new Astro camera and filter wheel have not really bought anything of huge cost anyway.
And for some stuff Brexit may not of helped with transport costs and paperwork.

Ebay I am afraid will milk the situation and do try to ask some crazy prices, I also tend to stay clear as unless new you have no idea about the quality of items.

Unfortunately it can be an expensive hobby unless buying only 2nd hand and even then that market does maintain a fair percentage of the cost of new.

Hi. Yes I totally understand the Covid issues, and yes I would agree their will inevitably have to be some increases in prices, but just as an example for you, the extremely popular Skywatcher 200p Dobsonian Telescope was priced £289 a few days ago, and now it's priced at £399!!?? That's wayyy too much of an increase, surely!!?? I was looking to buy a new Dob, a 12 inch SW Flex-Tube, but now after price increases I'm not sure whether to!?? I can actually see one potential plus point to all this though ?? ( I hope!?? ) at some point in the future, the Covid situation will settle down, and all the people who bought Telescopes during lockdown for something to do, rather than because they genuinely love the hobby, will all likely start selling their Telescopes and equipment, and the law of supply and demand ( Hopefully!! ) will mean that the second hand market will be flooded with Telescopes and equipment and prices should drop down again!!?? I sincerely hoper so!!?? lol.

Wes, Liverpool, UK.

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Yes, I noticed yesterday a certain well know secondhand dealer in Birmingham, his prices on eBay, and his site to a certain extent, have gone stupid...£180 for a celesteon f6.3 reducer / flattener.....😮😮😮😮😮

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10 minutes ago, wesdon1 said:

Hi. Yes I totally understand the Covid issues, and yes I would agree their will inevitably have to be some increases in prices, but just as an example for you, the extremely popular Skywatcher 200p Dobsonian Telescope was priced £289 a few days ago, and now it's priced at £399!!?? That's wayyy too much of an increase, surely!!?? I was looking to buy a new Dob, a 12 inch SW Flex-Tube, but now after price increases I'm not sure whether to!?? I can actually see one potential plus point to all this though ?? ( I hope!?? ) at some point in the future, the Covid situation will settle down, and all the people who bought Telescopes during lockdown for something to do, rather than because they genuinely love the hobby, will all likely start selling their Telescopes and equipment, and the law of supply and demand ( Hopefully!! ) will mean that the second hand market will be flooded with Telescopes and equipment and prices should drop down again!!?? I sincerely hoper so!!?? lol.

Wes, Liverpool, UK.

Yes, I hadn't really looked till now but some of the SW scopes especially have gone up a fair bit but it will be the suppliers that are causing the hike not the retailers .
Funnily enough  I was in China with work over Christmas 2019 to 2020  and intended to buy some stuff over there such as a new camera and a few other bits I could transport back easily but in all honesty it was not that much cheaper in China than in UK from most reputable retailers. Maybe 10% less if that and in the end didn't bother as for the small saving it wasn't worth the possibility of  paying more in import duty or hassle if something went wrong within the warranty period.

Big issue is I bet the prices will probably not drop when the shortage is over, certainly not to the pre-covid leves I bet.

Steve.
 

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Nobody likes price rises, but I can't help but feel we've lived through an unusual 'low price' period, which may have caused us to expect more for less. Forty years ago a 4" refractor would be a scope of dreams for many, and a 6" a rare beast indeed.   Just looking back at adverts for the beautiful classic Unitron, which I used to lust over, and comparing their prices with today's great refractors, we have little to grumble about really.  I know times are hard for many of us, but perhaps that may serve to reinforce how valuable our hard earned telescopes really are.   And even though they may be relatively pricey items, once we have one it's ours for life, so in real terms, even expensive ones are still value for money.  We just have to save a little longer!

Edited by mikeDnight
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2 minutes ago, mikeDnight said:

Nobody likes price rises, but I can't help but feel we've lived through an unusual 'low price' period, which may have caused us to expect more for less. Forty years ago a 4" refractor would be a scope of dreams for many, and a 6" a rare beast indeed.   Just looking back at adverts for the beautiful classic Unitron, which I used to lust over, and comparing their prices with today's great refractors, we have little to grumble about really.  I know times are hard for many of us, but perhaps that may serve to reinforce how value able our hard earned telescopes really are.   And even though they may be relatively pricey items, once we have one it's ours for life, so in real terms, even expensive ones are still value for money.  We just have to save a little longer!

There will probably be another brand thats going to be the new affordable allrounder.  ES, WO, etc.  

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Exactly as Mike said.
Even going back to the early 2000s. Scope features started to bloom without price rises. Goto once cost almost the same price as the scope & manual mount.

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4 minutes ago, teoria_del_big_bang said:

Yes, I hadn't really looked till now but some of the SW scopes especially have gone up a fair bit but it will be the suppliers that are causing the hike not the retailers .
Funnily enough  I was in China with work over Christmas 2019 to 2020  and intended to buy some stuff over there such as a new camera and a few other bits I could transport back easily but in all honesty it was not that much cheaper in China than in UK from most reputable retailers. Maybe 10% less if that and in the end didn't bother as for the small saving it wasn't worth the possibility of  paying more in import duty or hassle if something went wrong within the warranty period.

Big issue is I bet the prices will probably not drop when the shortage is over, certainly not to the pre-covid leves I bet.

Steve.
 

I was under the impression that the retailers had raised prices because they saw an opportunity to make more profits because their new products were now being sold used on eBay et al for more than their new prices!!?? Maybe it is the suppliers ?? Possibly for similar reasons i outlined ?? I'm really surprised the mainland China prices were so similar to UK retail prices ?? That's quite a shocker bc one would expect the prices to be much cheaper at source!?? Strange ? Oh my goodness i really hope prices do drop significantly post Covid!?? But either way, I'll never fall out of love with this amazing Hobby!! The only thing that truly mystifies me is why there aren't so so many more people in love with this beautiful Hobby!!?? How can one not be utterly blown away by the views above us!!?? 

Wes, Liverpool, UK

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10 minutes ago, mikeDnight said:

Nobody likes price rises, but I can't help but feel we've lived through an unusual 'low price' period, which may have caused us to expect more for less. Forty years ago a 4" refractor would be a scope of dreams for many, and a 6" a rare beast indeed.   Just looking back at adverts for the beautiful classic Unitron, which I used to lust over, and comparing their prices with today's great refractors, we have little to grumble about really.  I know times are hard for many of us, but perhaps that may serve to reinforce how value able our hard earned telescopes really are.   And even though they may be relatively pricey items, once we have one it's ours for life, so in real terms, even expensive ones are still value for money.  We just have to save a little longer!

Hi, you make a very fair point my friend! I do agree we have been spoiled during recent years due to massive decreases in prices, and 30-40 years ago, one could only dream of owning a 20 inch Aperture Telescope of such high quality!!?? or even a 12 inch Telescope without paying thousands of £££'s!!?? So in that context, the prices are dirt cheap!! I guess one should keep ones eyes on the bigger picture!!??

Wes, Liverpool, UK.

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3 minutes ago, wesdon1 said:

I was under the impression that the retailers had raised prices because they saw an opportunity to make more profits because their new products were now being sold used on eBay et al for more than their new prices!!?? Maybe it is the suppliers ?? Possibly for similar reasons i outlined ?? I'm really surprised the mainland China prices were so similar to UK retail prices ?? That's quite a shocker bc one would expect the prices to be much cheaper at source!?? Strange ? Oh my goodness i really hope prices do drop significantly post Covid!?? But either way, I'll never fall out of love with this amazing Hobby!! The only thing that truly mystifies me is why there aren't so so many more people in love with this beautiful Hobby!!?? How can one not be utterly blown away by the views above us!!?? 

Wes, Liverpool, UK

I have bought a couple of items from the EU recently, and although slightly more expensive, not by much, I think the U.K. retailers have either seen an opportunity, or it purely down to Shipping costs...but as we all know, if and when people start to pay these higher prices, as they have no choice, the retailers ain’t gonna reduce them are they...I mean c’mon...why would they...it’s business at the end of the day...so I think we need to accept it, or find a new hobby....

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38 minutes ago, Stuart1971 said:

Yes, I noticed yesterday a certain well know secondhand dealer in Birmingham, his prices on eBay, and his site to a certain extent, have gone stupid...£180 for a celesteon f6.3 reducer / flattener.....😮😮😮😮😮

I know!! I have seen the retailer in question myself and my goodness his/her prices are just plain wrong!!?? I actually emailed a couple of sellers asking them how on earth they could possibly justify the prices they were asking in their ads, and rather tellingly, I got no reply whatsoever!!?? lol 

Wes, Liverpool, UK.

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As we all know prices are governed by supply and demand, so if demand falls due to excessive price increases then prices should start to reduce, (hopefully).

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20 minutes ago, wesdon1 said:

I was under the impression that the retailers had raised prices because they saw an opportunity to make more profits because their new products were now being sold used on eBay et al for more than their new prices!!?? Maybe it is the suppliers ?? Possibly for similar reasons i outlined ?? I'm really surprised the mainland China prices were so similar to UK retail prices ?? That's quite a shocker bc one would expect the prices to be much cheaper at source!?? Strange ? Oh my goodness i really hope prices do drop significantly post Covid!?? But either way, I'll never fall out of love with this amazing Hobby!! The only thing that truly mystifies me is why there aren't so so many more people in love with this beautiful Hobby!!?? How can one not be utterly blown away by the views above us!!?? 

Wes, Liverpool, UK

I can't say I looked on every website for astro stuff but certainly looked at ZWO cameras and some other stuff such as rotators and filter wheels  and I think I even looked at mounts as I was definitely looking for an upgrade at that time (mount had to be a fair bit cheaper though as although I was in Business class I guess I would have to ship it separately, which surprisingly is not that expensive if container shipped)  but as said know make stuff was really not that much cheaper than UK, certainly not half price which a lot of other non astro stuff was, and surprised me as well, so I am not in the know but suspect the mark-up by our few UK retailers is not massive.
And I was working with a couple of our Chinese engineers so they searched and rang up places for me, it was not the fact I was English and the retailers there were conning me they rang up or asked by email in Chinese any questions I had.

Steve

Edited by teoria_del_big_bang
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3 minutes ago, banjaxed said:

As we all know prices are governed by supply and demand, so if demand falls due to excessive price increases then prices should start to reduce, (hopefully).

very good point! I sincerely hope so! Only time will tell...

Wes.

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Still a lot better than the astronomical world I started out in the early 70's. My first full time job in early 1975 was £15 ppw at that time a Dixons special 60mm refractor was close on £30,there really nothing much else at the time without going to specialist dealers mail order costing a  fortune . A short time prior the miners were thought to be unreasonable wanting a £40 pw pay deal.

When I bought my first 'big',scope in 1978 a very basic 6" altaz Newtonian  it cost £200 but my wage at the time was only about £50 so I got a bank loan.It had to be made so I had to wait weeks for delivery.

I don't want  to sound like a old codger but young newcomers today don't know their living with all the technology bells and whistles, large apertures and next day deliveries.

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2 minutes ago, Les Ewan said:

Still a lot better than the astronomical world I started out in the early 70's. My first full time job in early 1975 was £15 ppw at that time a Dixons special 60mm refractor was close on £30,there really nothing much else at the time without going to specialist dealers mail order costing a  fortune . A short time prior the miners were thought to be unreasonable wanting a £40 pw pay deal.

When I bought my first 'big',scope in 1978 a very basic 6" altaz Newtonian  it cost £200 but my wage at the time was only about £50 so I got a bank loan.It had to be made so I had to wait weeks for delivery.

I don't want  to sound like a old codger but young newcomers today don't know their living with all the technology bells and whistles, large apertures and next day deliveries.

Yes a couple of other more experienced members have said the same things about the 70's and 80's prices/availability etc. I do accept that we are living in amazing times for Telescopes and technology! I just got such a shock when prices rose so suddenly and so steeply! lol. 

Wes.

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14 minutes ago, Stuart1971 said:

I have bought a couple of items from the EU recently, and although slightly more expensive, not by much, I think the U.K. retailers have either seen an opportunity, or it purely down to Shipping costs...but as we all know, if and when people start to pay these higher prices, as they have no choice, the retailers ain’t gonna reduce them are they...I mean c’mon...why would they...it’s business at the end of the day...so I think we need to accept it, or find a new hobby....

I'm not so sure!  I think we've seen a strong measure of fair play from a number of vendors over a long period to know they'ed do their best to offer a good service. FLO in particular has been very good at offering low prices even on high end equipment.  Behaviour like this not only offers reassurance,  but it also keeps others on their toe's in maintaining a relatively level playing field.  Perhaps I'm an eternal optimist and see the good in everyone! 

Even the Birmingham vendor of second hand, overpriced gear, can at times advertise some rare items. If you really want that rare item, then it's there for you. Generally however, I do think their prices in general are double the second hand value, so i rarely ever buy from them.

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Shipping costs may not have helped much at present given a shortage of containers and a big hike by some carriers as a result. Someone has to bear these costs and given the small margin on the tin the manufacturer & importer can't absorb much so that'll also get passed on to the end customers.

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Yep, I paid £600 for a fullerscope Newtonian with MKIV mount, none goto mid 70's. I think I was on £35 a week summer job plus tips. Saved every penny I could and took six months plus. Now x that by today's minimum salary for summer jobs and you have a conservative estimate of £5000 to £6000 for the same scope.

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1 hour ago, banjaxed said:

As we all know prices are governed by supply and demand, so if demand falls due to excessive price increases then prices should start to reduce, (hopefully).

Prices are only governed in part by supply and demand. If costs preclude price drops then a drop in demand can make it uneconomic to stay in business. Enough astronomy businesses have disappeared as it is. With the internet and easy price comparisons across dealers, prices tend to settle at a level more or less the same across all retailers.

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