Aug
4
2013

They REALLY don't make em like they used to.....

1946 Wurlitzer 1015 jukebox @ Coinopwarehouse

I was over at Coinopwarehousesaw this beautiful 1946 Wurlitzer 1015 jukebox and it just made me think about how much care we use to put into things we built back in the day. This jukebox was built 30 years before I was even born, but I sure love the older pieces cause man, the older stuff is beautiful!

You look at the cars, soda machines, jukeboxes, etc.. back then and the curves, use of colors and just time and care that went into that stuff makes those items so much more beautiful than the stuff produced today. It was art! 

These days it's all about building it as cheap and as quickly as possible to increase your profit, but leaves collectors and the rest of the world after us with plastic hunks of junk to look at. Oh look, a soda machine with a giant plastic bubble that covers the entire machine and no time spent anywhere else on the machine...BARF! Thanks for spending 5 minutes on the design guys! ;)

What are your thoughts on how things were made in the past compared to today? And, what companies are you aware of today that build new everything they sell with that old school mentality, ensuring the world doesn't go void of beautiful pieces like this.

Leave comments or email us via our Facebook page at: Facebook.com/CollectedIt

Happy Collecting!
Rich Cavallaro

What Do You Collect?
Show Us @ CollectedIt.com

 


 

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Abortion Pill Cost

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Jun
4
2013

Price Check Please!

My last post kind of leads into this one, but thought it made it sense to give some more insight on one of the most important and easiest things you can do as a flipper of collectibles, antiques, or whatever your specialty is these days: Price Checking.  Yes, I’m probably stating the obvious, but knowing what something is worth before you buy it is just common sense (especially if you are going to resell it).

Most people only collect certain things, so keeping tabs on value of everything you come across is impossible.  Of course if you’re a video game collector you know the value of the complete Nintendo NES Flintstones 2, but as a stamp collector it probably just looks like another video game.

So you come across these three games at a flea market, the crazy dealer thinks they are worth $100 a piece, seems high right?

So you come across these three games at a flea market, the crazy dealer thinks they are worth $100 a piece, seems high right?

Let’s say you find Flintstones 2 along with a few other games at a flea market.  On a whim, you ask how much for the three Nintendo games and the vendor goes on with the same old story about, “how you can’t find these anymore and they are super rare” and he wants $100 each for them. We’ll that may seem a lot, but if you’re smart enough to pull out your iPhone, pull up eBay and check completed listings you’ll see that the last complete copy of Nintendo Flintstones 2 sold for $2,500 (this is an actual auction that ended on April 2, 2013).

You go on to check the other two games to find they are worth $15-20 each on a good day.   Of course you buy the Flintstones 2 leave the two other games, dash back to your car and safely stash it with your other finds of the days, knowing you’ve just got enough hobby profit buy that $2000 stamp you’ve always wanted with change to spare.

With a Smartphone and today’s technology it is so easy to keep up to date on prices and value of pretty much anything that you’d be stupid not to do so when you come across something you think might be valuable.  eBay’s completed and sold auctions provide great guidelines for gauging current market value (just be sure to ignore current listings with no bids or buyers).  In addition, there are many independent collector sites that provide rarity and values for collectors.

Take your time, whip out your iPhone, do a few Google or eBay searches, before you grab something you’re not sure what it’s worth.  Again, its just common sense, right?

Happy collecting!

Anthony Pietrak
CollectedIt.com

Apr
27
2013

eBay Selling Alternatives (Or I Can't Stand eBay Any Longer)

Seems like every collector/dealer/hobbyist, etc. I talk to these days is frustrated and tired of using eBay, me included.  As a long time eBay user of 15 years, the site has seen much better days when to comes to selling used items.  Listing items is a pain, the fees are expensive, the fast shipping requirements can be burdensome, buyer protection rules are not designed to protect the seller, buyers can be way too demanding and picky, etc. 

Of course, it still is probably the best and quickest way to sell items these days online, or is it?  As owner of QuarterArcade.com, I've made a living for the past 15 years buying and selling items, mostly arcade related, but I've also dabbled in other collectibles.  There are good alternatives to eBay and even a better alternative in the works.  Here are some my favorites:

1. Local Flea Markets - I wrote about this last year, but hitting up a local flea market with your lower end stuff is a great way to move items and walk away with some quick cash.  You probably don't want to bring your $300 sealed Battlestar Galactica figure here, but $5-20 items seem to sell very well.  I find loading up a minivan usually nets me $300-500 at my local Flea Market.  I usually make this trip once or twice a year. 

I've said before they are not just for buying! 

2. Amazon's Used Marketplace - Amazon is my go to site for buying new items, but I also find that selling on their used marketplace works great for things like console video games, newer toys and other newer items that are more widely available. Listing items is a breeze (no pictures required) and there is no need for Paypal to be involved.  The big downside is that like eBay, Amazon takes a notable commission when items are sold.

3. Local Auction House - Finding a local Auction House can also be a great alternative to selling items quickly and easily.  One of the keys is finding a reputable, well-run auction house to consign your items with.  I recommend checking an auction or two out before selling and meeting with the auctioneer to get comfortable with the process.  Earlier this year I went through and sold a bunch of boxed Lego sets and other random collectible toys.  I found that was able to get pretty much eBay prices, even after paying the consignment fee.  One of the biggest benefits of using an auction house is that you hand them a pile of "stuff" and a few weeks later a check arrives in one lump sum.  No other work involved, no packing items, no following up, no recourse for an unhappy buyer. AuctionZip.com is a great site for finding local auction houses.

4. Collectible /Trade Shows - If you find yourself specializing in one area of collectibles, hitting up a local collectible show as a seller is always an option.  Sometimes the cost can be prohibitive at larger shows, but there are usually smaller shows such as Too Many Games (for videogames), where you can get a table at a reasonable price.  I find you can usually sell nicer items at a show like this.  Another benefit is it is usually all cash sales and no buyer remorse to deal with as they are seeing what they are purchasing.

If you have enough "stuff" shows are always a good option.

5. CollectedIt!'s Marketplace - Okay, this one is a bit of self-promoting, but we're actively working on a new marketplace portion of the site that we believe will be a great way to buy and sell items online.  We've dealt with eBay long enough to know what it has become and how frustrating selling on it can be.  Our plan is to build a marketplace designed to be easy to use for both buyer and seller and geared towards selling used and collectible items only.  Look for more details in the next few months, but we think we're on to something good here.

Happy collecting!

Anthony Pietrak
CollectedIt.com

Mar
10
2013

Am back on game consoles as I picked up a PS3 - Man, times have changed...

 
It was 1980, I was 6, and the only Christmas present I asked for was an Atari 2600. Of course in 1980 I believe it was just called Atari VCS as it didn't get branded 2600 until 1982 when the all black Darth Vader version came out.

My dad pulled A Christmas Story move and hid it, letting me open all my other presents and asked if I had gotten everything I wanted. Of course I said 'Yes' as I wasn't a spoiled little shit. I appreciated whatever I got. An hour goes by and my dad says that it looks like we forgot one. He points and I see a large present hidden behind the tree. Much like Ralphie knew it was his Red Rider BB gun, I knew right away it was my Atari with the killer wood grain on the front. Stylin! 

I was hooked. My family couldn't afford to keep up with the consoles that were to follow so I never had a ColecoVision or Intellivision. But that's okay because with a Putt-Putt arcade across the street from my house, that's where I lived until the arcade crash and the release of the Nintendo Entertainment System. (NES)

The NES was another Christmas present and for me is really the system I'll always love the most. To me it really kicked the home gaming craze into overdrive which hasn't stopped since its release. So many of its games were classics that created so many memories, like beating Mike Tyson, slaying Ganon, killing Dracula or FINALLY finding, not beating, FINDING the last damn level in Blaster Master.

For years to come NES games were what all my paychecks from teenage jobs went towards. At age 17 I had over 100 games and even started renting them to friends....Yes renting.....I eventually started selling used ones to buy new ones. I think I invented that business hahaha.

NES led to me working at a Software Etc.. game store and my SEGA Genesis, Super Nintendo, SEGA CD, 32X and yes, I even bought a 3DO when it first came out for like $700. Throw in a SEGA Saturn, Dreamcast & Playstation and that's where it pretty much ended for me.

Playstation was great, but for some reason during that time I just lost interest, not sure why. I feel like the quality of the games being made just didn't have that imagination I felt NES games had. It seemed like too many companies focused on trying to pump out games with the best graphics, but put zero focus into the actual game or gameplay. Was I crazy or was that true? You tell me.

At some point I bought a GameCube, I believe just for Star Wars. But again, unimpressed, I lost interest. Not even the release of PS2 or Microsoft throwing their hat into the ring with XBOX was enough to bring me back. ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzz

Enter the Wii. FINALLY, the company who brought me my wonderful NES has returned with a fresh approach on how we play games. Bought one and loved it for a while, but realized the reason I was loving it was because I could download and play all the old NES games  :)    Back to darkness, the release of the PS3 and XBOX 360 comes and goes.

Late 2012 a friend tells me about Dead Space by EA for iPhone, so I give it a try. Wow, this is my type of game. The creepy atmosphere, the feeling of loneliness, I was hooked. It very much reminded me of Project Firestart for the Commodore 64 which also was created by EA. If you haven't played Project Firestart on the C64, try and find time to as it truly is a classic not many people know about. 

I discover there is a bigger and badder version of Dead Space on the XBOX 360 and PS3. Okay now I'm interested. A friend at work tells me the God of War series for PS3. I check out a few YouTube videos of that and Unchartered which leads me to asking for a PS3 for Christmas. All my favorite game consoles had come as Christmas presents, so here's hoping for the best.

Well folks, I'm hooked again. I played through Dead Space and Dead Space 2, which were just incredible. About to pick up Dead Space 3. I also played through God of War 1, 2 & 3 which was nothing short of amazing. Recently, I played all 3 Uncharted games. Not only are the stories and the gameplay on these new games top notch, the graphics just blew me away. I wasn't prepared for truly how gorgeous games had gotten. I had only played games on a GameCube and Wii the past 10 years, so PS3 just made my jaw drop.

Being a NES kid at heart, I recently picked up Bionic Commando: Rearmed for PS3, which is a remake version of the original on NES. It's beautiful. They kept the original side-scrolling action, the sounds and many of the things we loved about the original and made the graphics beautiful. It's fantastic and they just released part 2.

Also released is a brand new, fully updated third-person version of Bionic Commando for the PS3. Is updated and not the classic I'm use to, you need to get use to the new way to swing with the bionic arm, but I'm playing through it. We'll see where I end up with it.

I'll keep you updated on anything new I dive into. I see SONY recently announced PS4, so am pretty excited to see how incredible those games look given how stunned I am with PS3. What I'm glad to see though is that there are some companies out there making some truly remarkable games that have that imagination I was so use to in the classic days of gaming.

Let me know your thoughts and if you recently got back into console gaming yourself.
See ya soon!

Rich Cavallaro
CollectedIt.com

Below is some gameplay of Project Firestart by EA, the game I mentioned above for Commodore 64 that I believe is the inspiration for the new Dead Space games by EA. Monsters on a ship in space, you're all alone, creepy atmosphere, words written in blood on the walls, etc.. I even hear sounds in Dead Space 2 that are in this game like the creepy siren sound. Let me know if you agree.

Part 1 of 4 (continued below)


Part 2 of 4 (continued below)



Part 3 of 4 (continued below)



Part 4 of 4


Jan
26
2013

Need an 80's fix? - This collection is for you!

I grew up a child of the 80's. For me there was nothing better than hanging out with friends at the Putt-Putt Arcade on the Dragon's Lair machine, the Eric Twin Movie Theatre and of course, The Bazaar all in wonderful Clifton Heights, PA. If I ever have millions, I'm building a new Bazaar by the way.

Of course there was also my Atari 2600, my NES and those wonderful, wonderful Saturday morning cartoons that you didn't mind waking up early on the weekend to watch. Transformers, TMNT, He-Man, G.I. Joe, Dungeons & Dragons, Thundercats......the list goes on and on.

Like many, I've relived some 80's moments from YouTube watching a commercial here and there. But today I came across this video, a collection of TV ads from the 80's with 50 minutes of quick clips taken from 40 hours of footage. It was like an 80's explosion to my brain. Tons and tons of stuff I recognized, forgot about and couldn't quite recall.

So if you loved the 80's and have 50 minutes, or 5, give this a look and get ready for 80's recall.

Rich Cavallaro
CollectedIt.com
 

Memorex from Smash TV on Vimeo.

Jan
23
2013

Atari Arcade - New versions of old faves & quickly create HTML5 games using their SDK

A friend kicked this over to me and I don't know how I missed this, but I did. 

Atari and Microsoft have used the cool new advances in technology to 'reimagine' our old school classics releasing new versions of Lunar Lander, Combat, Asteroids, Centipede, Yar's Revenge, Missile Command, Super Breakout and Pong in the Atari Arcade.

The arcade and games were created using HTML5, CSS3 and JS which allows play across many modern browsers and devices.

What's really rad, yeah I said rad, is that for those of us who like to develop our own games, they have released a ton of tools and the Atari Arcade SDK so that creating your own HTML5 game becomes simple and cost-effective. They've gone ahead and made hundreds of enhancements available for you to use open source on GitHub. Available to you are game templates, pre-set touch controls, effects, score helpers and pre-built libraries for collisions and physics. Want more?.....You can also get your game published in the Atari Arcade! Atari also plans to release many other new versions of the classics into their arcade.

So either get gaming, get to work....or do both! I've included links to all the info you need below starting with some videos on the making of the arcade. Below those are links to the arcade itself as well as information on how to begin creating your own game on their gaming platform.

Will your game be the next Pong? What are you waiting for? 

Rich Cavallaro
CollectedIt.com


Atari Arcade Videos and Resource Links

Gaming Reimagined - Atari Arcade, presented by Internet Explorer


Atari Arcade - Behind the Scenes


The Atari Arcade
Play new HTML5 versions of your old favorites

Create your own HTML5 games using tools and the Atari Arcade SDK



Jan
20
2013

Jersey Jack Pinball set to release new Wizard of Oz Pinball

Being a lover of the old school arcade and an owner of Black Knight, Haunted House and Black Hole pinball machines, I'm very happy to see a new pinball machine from a different pinball company set to be released.

If you aren't aware, the only pinball company still producing new machines these days is Stern Pinball. Well, we all know competition is a great thing and Stern finally has some.

Jersey Jack Pinball is set to release The Wizard of Oz Pinball with a 26 inch HD LCD built into the back-glass, a cool crystal ball with video showing on the inside, the spinning house, melting witch and of course, a flying monkey that flies down and steals your ball! As a nice touch, the flippers are Dorothy's ruby red slippers.


Picture of Wizard of Oz Pinball from TheSlate.com

Good luck to Jersey Jack! Great to see another company producing pinball machines.
Rich Cavallaro
CollectedIt.com
 

More articles and videos on Wizard of Oz Pinball 


Can This Man Save Pinball? (From TheSlate.com)

An arcade entrepreneur has a plan to resuscitate the dying pastime—
with a little help from the Wizard of Oz.

 

Jan
17
2013

The Life and Death of the Arcade

Evening Collectors and Gamers!

A friend shared this story on the life and death  of the arcade (link below) published on The Verge and I thought it was great as it brought back so many memories. I grew up in the old 80's arcade across the street from my house, Putt-Putt Golf & Games in Clifton Heights, PA spending my childhood and high school days hanging out with friends and being so excited to see a new game being wheeled in that nobody had seen before.

Even before Putt-Putt, there was the Westbrook Park bowling alley that had my Black Knight pinball machine and I remember the first day Donkey Kong was rolled in and the first quarter that was put into it. Such great memories.

So sad for me to see the death of the arcade and the ones that are left turned into 'Family Fun Centers' which just have large driving and shooting games or machines that spit out tickets for prizes. Kids know nothing else.

Losing our original arcades, the kids have really lost something special. It was a place where they got out of the house and socialized with other friends and met new people. You hung out there on the weekends, scoped the chicks and played some Dragon's Lair. Now kids sit at home and play a game, but they play and talk to their friends over a headset. Convenient? Sure! But think about being able to get out of the house, away from your parents, play games with your friends, meet new people face to face and meet girls!!!! :)  I'll take that any day!

Check out the article below and tell us your memories of the classic arcade
Don't forget to check out the video in the middle of the article 

For Amusement Only: the life and death of the American arcade

Rich Cavallaro
CollectedIt.com

Nov
11
2012

CollectedIt! 2.0 is Live!

We've been hard at the work the past two months implementing a number of improvements to CollectedIt! and we're happy to say they are now live!  Some of the improvements to the site include more robust collection management tools, better notifications on activity by other collectors on the site and improved social networking tools to communicate with other collectors. 

One of the key changes to the site is improved collection management tools. Users no longer have to submit pictures for individual collectibles.  We found that while users love the idea of posting pictures, some people just don't have the time to do it right away, so we modified the site to allow users to enter their collections without images.

Of course, you can always go back and add pictures at any point. Do own 2,000 video games and just don't want to take 2,000 pictures?  We also now allow you to submit snapshot pictures of your entire collection, rather than take individual pictures of every item you own (which is still supported as well).

For our console and video game collectors we now have a master game reference list of all console and arcade games ever made, which means adding your collection is as simple as finding the console and clicking on the games you own from the master list.  Still looking for certain games for your collection?  No problem, we now have a "wanted list" so you can keep track of what items you still need to finish up your collection.

NOTE: To take advantage of existing game reference data, those who posted collections with us before this release on 11/3/2012, make sure you now classify your collection(s) with a 'Category Type.' See below for more information.


We also now have community pages for each collecting area, where users can see who's posting want to their collections and talk collecting with other collectors. Another addition to the site are improvements to viewing collections, you can now view collections as thumbnails or if you prefer in a grid/table format.

Another option you'll see for each item you list is the "Make me Sell!" price. In the short time CollectedIt! has been live, we have found that many users were looking to buy collectibles from other users. While most people aren't looking to sell their prized items, some people do have a price that would make them sell. If you're that person, just list your "Make Me Sell!" price for that item. Who knows, maybe somebody will pay $50 for that copy of Atari 2600 Pac-Man.  (Note that we're still building out this portion of the site and hope to have tools to facilitate these transactions very soon.)

Attention Existing CollectedIt.com Users:
Classify 'Collection Type' On Your Existing Collections
Today we also released the ability to set/change the collection type on your existing CollectedIt.com collection. This is especially important for those of you who posted a collection with us before collection types were added on 11/3/2012. You can set or change yours by going to collection manager, access a collection and set/change it under the 'Type of Collection' section. This classification is important as classifying your collections will provide you access to existing reference data (where available) when adding new items.

I think I covered most of the more notable improvements to the site.  Trust me, there are many more to come in the next few months, we have a number of ideas we're planning to implement as we move forward.  As always, feedback is always welcome, we are here to build a site for collectors, so please let us know what you think and what you'd like to see by emailing Rich Cavallaro

--Anthony P & Rich Cav

Sep
5
2012

A happy arcade game is a properly powered arcade game: Test those voltages!

Probably the most important and fairly simple thing you can do to diagnose broken arcade games is testing the voltages that your game board is receiving.  Without the proper voltage, arcade game circuit boards will not work.  I also recommend testing voltage even if your game is working as it can prevent future problems.  You'll need a multimeter (digital preferred) to test your board, they are available at any decent electronics store.

Once you've got your meter and have access to your arcade game board (usually done through the back of the cabinet) set it to test for DC voltage so you can test that the circuit board is the getting the proper voltage. Arcade boards run on +5VDC, +12VDC and in many cases -5VDC.  Some boards also use -12VDC or odd voltages. I always recommend testing voltage on your board (versus testing it on the power supply) as there is usually a 0.1 to 0.3 VDC drop off from the power supply to the board. 

There are a few ways to test voltage on a board, one method is to find the pinout of the board and test for voltage at the edge connector.  Pinouts show the wiring of the board at the edge connector and are widely available online with one good source being Crazy Kong.com.  

After you have the pinout find out where ground and +5VDC come into the board.  Put your black lead of your meter on the ground and the red lead on the +5VDC input with the game on.  Your meter should display the voltage.  Repeat this step for +12VDC and -5VDC, again, using the ground input for your black lead and red for the voltage you want to check.

Bump and Jump board being tested at the edge connector. Black lead goes to the ground pins, red lead to the +5VDC lead.

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