Would you buy more CDs if the price dropped to $8 US retail?

Would you buy more CDs if the price dropped to $8 US retail?
Yes, a lot more
56% (267 votes)
Yes, a moderate amount more
28% (131 votes)
Yes, a few more
7% (34 votes)
About the same amount
4% (19 votes)
$8 is still too much
4% (19 votes)
I don't buy CDs
1% (3 votes)
Total votes: 473

Are CD prices too high? Does pricing constrict the amount of music you purchase and listen to? After reading the responses to last week's question, it seems appropriate to ask if you would buy more regular CDs if the price dropped substantially---let's say to around $8 US per disc at retail.

Ed Delk's picture

I buy a lot of discs now (10 to 15 per month), and would DOUBLE my purchases if CD prices were halved to eight bucks a pop. From '84 to '87 I didn't mind paying $15 or so for CDs, since I knew they were an "emerging" technology and that the startup costs were probably high. Twelve years later, however, economies of scale have yielded a windfall to CD manufacturers and music companies, yet prices have remained high. (For example, in New York City, most non-classical CDs at Virgin Records are from $15.99 to $17.99.) The companies should realize that consumer purchasing is generally elastic---demand will increase if quality and diversity remain constant but price drops. The companies would sell more of everything (since consumers could afford to experiment and buy different genres of music), even though profit-per-disc would be lower. In the end, I think they would definitely come out ahead, as would consumers. But a couple of dollars off per disc won't do it---they need to bring it down significantly below $10 before a consumer would actually feel like CDs are a "bargain" and are worth taking a chance on if not within the consumer's usual genre of favorite music. By the way, thanks for asking!

Arturo Gomez Gras's picture

In Spain, a new CD costs about $20 . . .

Charles Purvis Kelly, Jr.'s picture

If the price of a CD drops to $8.00, then I will buy a lot more. Without a doubt. Charles Purvis Kelly, Jr. chaskelljr1_@hotmail.com

leonardo barroso's picture

This so not a theoretical question, because, like Naxos, their cd's are selling for usd 4,99 and making big ones like sony, emi, etc. to think their prices all over. But sometimes it takes time and lots of patience to modify others minds. And as cd's price is falling lets also ask for quality. Just check-out Mr. taguchi's interview.

Daniel Lindvall's picture

I can and often do buy CDs at about $8 average from BMG Classical Music Service.

Eric Jansen's picture

I will generally buy only what I am confident about. I know I have passed on some great music because I wasn't sure about the artist, CD, etc. I don't like paying $12 plus and then not liking the CD.

Anonymous's picture

Record companies are just too greedy. They want to squeeze every last dime out of consumers.

Drake's picture

It's a realistic price. Why pay so much for something that costs so little to produce and you usually only like a few of the songs anyway.

Rand's picture

quality has to be same or get better. that means all aspects, sound #1, as well as liner notes, lyrics, etc.

Aaron Young's picture

That would be awesome, since its only worth about a dollar. It takes more money to make a tape, doesn't it?

Peter Pawlowski's picture

Yes, like about double the number I presently buy or more. I suffer from "sticker shock" every time I go to Tower Records. New jazz and blues releases at $16.98 or $17.98! Yeow! Even with my KLON membership $1 discount, it still hurts. I now wait for a disc to go on sale, and buy it only if I really, REALLY want it. So much for taking a chance.

John Crossett's picture

If the music companys could see their way clear to give up some of the outragous profits that they have been gouging the public for, I, for one, would be glad to purchase more music with which to enjoy my stereo more.

Rob Cornelson's picture

Considering the actual cost of a CD by manufacturers, I think it's about time they dropped in price. I rarely buy any CD new anyway because it doesn't hurt me to wait for most music to reach the used shelves. I buy 95% of my CD's used at around $8 or join the CD clubs where more bargains can be had. If the retail price of a CD dropped from $17 down to $8 everywhere I would definetly be buying more CD's simply because I wouldn't have to search different used CD stores for the ones I want or wait the time it takes for someone to get sick of their CD and sell it.

Bard-Alan Finlan's picture

Yes, yes, yes!

Matthew George's picture

$8 is still a tad high in my opinion.

Steve Dudley's picture

Whatever happened to the lower prices we were supposed to see once the manufacturers got up to speed? Back in the early '80s there was all this talk about how prices would come down once the factories caught up with the demand. Hell, I'm still seeing prices as high as the very first discs I ever bought almost 15 years ago. Can you say "GREED"?

Dean K Neptune's picture

More CD's would be sold at $8 a piece and the companies would make it up in volume

Craig Copeland's picture

If you are lucky enough to live in an area that has quality FM stations that broadcast your brand of music a good FM tuner hooked up to an adaquate antenna is cheapest way to listen. $5.00 per CD would be a bigger draw than $8.00.

wes's picture

Since the manufacturing costs have dropped, I think it is time the consumer price should also drop. Another thing is if DVD-Audio flies, they should drop even more.

Roger Bruneau's picture

Yes, I would. The proof is in the pudding. When there are specials at Columbia House or BMG, I jump to the occasion.

Michael Labombarda's picture

I am a very select consumer. There are few CDs/artists where I really like the entire program selection. Therefore, $15 or $8 is simply too much to pay. In these cases, I can get most CDs from our local library system and record only the selections I enjoy. I regularly obtain new CDs from record clubs for around $8. Unfortunately, their selection is limited to the popular or their "contract" selections. The most effective motivator for purchasing new CDs has been the in-store preview opportunities. If I really like a particular CD, price is no barrier. Pre-enjoyed CDs are also always in my consideration set, especially since I can preview prior to purchase. Add in $1 for a new, pristine jewel box and you've got a new CD for around $8! However, when the independents run buy-one-used, get-one-used-free sales 4-6 times a year, my purchases escalate. Now that's value!

Joe's picture

I currently pay less than $8 through my CD club. I'm an 11-year member so I get all kinds of discounts. I never buy through local stores.

joe burke's picture

while current cd prices (at discount) allow me to buy all that i am looking for, i expect that i would take more chances in trying new material at a lower price.

Stephen's picture

The cost of the CD has rarely determined the purchase, IF the CD contained music that I wanted.

mark kirby's picture

Everyone knows cd's are way too expensive. I buy used, and through record clubs, and reissues.

Federico Cribiore's picture

The price is rarely the concern for me. It would make a minimal difference if it was cheaper. It is true that I might buy more at one shot, but I doubt that it would be substantial. Although . . . a side point that should be made is that the day that some of the XRCDs or some of the 20-bit remasters come down in price, I will definitely buy more of them, and start the replacement of existing discs with the new ones. Charging $30 for an XRCD is absurd. the difference is not substantial enough to charge double.

Thomas E.  Jenkins, DMD's picture

The sparse packaging adds to the perception of a ripoff at the current price levels.

Thomas Karlsson's picture

Of course I buy a lot more music if the prices drop.

Andrew M.  DiLauro's picture

Internet service providers give discs away, so they can't cost too much to produce. Why hasn't the price of audio discs dropped? Smells like price fixing to me.

John Jansky's picture

CDs can't cost much to manufacture. I must have received at least a hundred of them from AOL over the past few years. Mostly I'd be concerned with the quality improving. Many of the recent CDs I have purchased are fine for a mid-fi system, but the sound suffers when played on my Krell and Maggies.