Inflation adjusted cost of music

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by senseless, May 14, 2015.

  1. senseless macrumors 68000

    senseless

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    #1
    I calculated the cost of an average "single" recording through the years, when adjusted for inflation. This would be for a physical record with an "A" and bonus "B" side, about 6 minutes total.

    1925: $10
    1935: $8.50
    1945: n/a
    1955: $4.50
    1965: $5.50
    1975: $4.50
    1985: $3.75
    1995: $7.50 (CD single)
    2015: $1.29 (i-Tunes)
     
  2. Happybunny macrumors 68000

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    #2
    And via a pirate site nothing nix noppes nul :p:D:p:D:p
     
  3. Meister Suspended

    Meister

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    #3
    Many times I look at the 69 cent songs :p

    I love a bargain :D
     
  4. noodlemanc macrumors regular

    noodlemanc

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  5. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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  6. senseless thread starter macrumors 68000

    senseless

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    #6
    Sources: old records I have with price labels on them, old internet record catalogs, some anecdotal message searches. I think these are good estimates.

    Original estimated selling prices for "singles".
    1925: 75¢ (78rpm disc), 1935: 50¢, 1955: 50¢, 1965: 75¢ (45rpm), 1975: $1, 1985: $1.75, 1995: $4 est. avg cd single.
    2005 was excluded because I could not find any data for cd single prices for that period.

    Method: took selling price from say 1925 (.75¢ for a 78rpm record) and plugged it into this inflation calculator: http://www.westegg.com/inflation/

    Conclusion: Records were more expensive than people think. Digital music is a bargain.
     
  7. mobilehaathi macrumors G3

    mobilehaathi

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    #7
    Thank you. :)

    I wonder how the break down of who got paid what was and how it may have changed over time.
     
  8. Fzang macrumors 65816

    Fzang

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    Jun 15, 2013
    #8
    The labels probably took huge cuts to pay for studios, mastering, renting instruments and stuff. Everyone can afford a synthesizer plugin and a DAW for their laptop today, and the general price of technology has plummeted.
     
  9. Jessica Lares macrumors G3

    Jessica Lares

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    #9
    You should include vinyl singles costs today since they still make those.
     
  10. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

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    #10
    I don't see how a CD single (which often contained multiple songs and were closer to an EP) or an iTunes download meet your own definition.
     
  11. senseless thread starter macrumors 68000

    senseless

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    #11
    The CD single that contained more than 2 tracks was usually priced higher than my $4 example. It might have been $6 to $8. It's hard to find a definitive answer, though.

    Vinyl 45s became kind of a niche' product by the 90's, so I excluded those.
     

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