Buying an NES console in 2019

Discuss hardware-related topics, such as development cartridges, CopyNES, PowerPak, EPROMs, or whatever.

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darryl.revok
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Re: Buying an NES console in 2019

Post by darryl.revok » Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:01 am

It doesn't look like OP is coming back, but I've wanted to share a bit of my experience here.

I would not recommend looking at yard sales for an NES in 2019 unless you don't value your time. Your chances of finding one are slim, and if you do, the seller is going to pull out their smart phone to look up what it sells for. That is the way of the world today.

If you were to buy a refurbished console, realize that the consoles were in the worst possible condition before they were repaired. If a seller is buying consoles to repair and sell for profit, they are not buying the most expensive, nicest units. They are not buying boxed consoles and refurbishing them. They're buying cheap consoles. They are buying the ones that they can make the most money from.

Craigslist, I also consider to be a waste of time. Any good deals are gone immediately, so unless it's worthwhile for you to sit there and stare at Craigslist listings for days on end to save ten dollars, you're going to be paying eBay prices on Craigslist too.

It makes more sense to me to spend 5 minutes clicking, buying, and then going on with your life.

Personally, I feel like I've wasted a lot of money trying to save money. It's really disappointing to buy something that you think is going to entertain you for years to see it die in a month, or not work at all. I've come full circle in my collecting to the point that I would rather pay more to have a minty boxed console that was barely used. I guess I decided that if I'm going to pay the money to buy something for my own personal entertainment then I'll be happier having one that I'm excited about owning, rather than one that inspires frustration. I get more for my money that way. It's supposed to be a fun hobby and fussing with a broken machine is not fun to me. When you go to share an awesome game with your friends and your "iffy" console decides not to cooperate, that's not fun. Especially when the realization that your beloved console has died sets in, that can put a damper on the fun you're trying to have.

Front-loader NESes are kind of a dime a dozen though and didn't work well when they were brand new. Personally, I see no reason not to get an AV Famicom, but I'm not a hardware expert. I've added pressure to the ZIF slot pins on front-loaders before and that works okay, but it's still a far cry from the reliability of a top-loader, and you don't get expansion audio. Even if you buy a minty NES front-loader in box with bags and everything, the pins could use some work. I was around in the 80s and even then front-loading NESes were spotty.

If you do want to buy one in person, there are some advantages to buying from a local store. You can look at it in person before you buy. You can return it if something goes wrong. You can browse their other titles. But maybe the best part is that you can socialize about games and hopefully make some friends. I've spent a lot of time hanging out in game stores whether I was buying anything or not. If somebody's going to make some money off you, then you might as well find a local business that you want to support in your community.

As someone who's bought probably 100 consoles (not all for myself) and has spent a lot of time trying to save money, I think it's important to realize that you may actually be costing yourself in the long run to try and snag that good deal.

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koitsu
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Re: Buying an NES console in 2019

Post by koitsu » Thu Mar 07, 2019 2:13 pm

Especially in lieu of what darryl.revok just wrote: is there a particular reason buying an AVS isn't a more feasible option? Sure, it's not "the real thing" (which might matter depending on what you're trying to do), but it also isn't an Retron 3 or 5 (those are just glorified ROM dumpers + emulators) so it's a bit more like the real thing but with an HDMI hookup.

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GloryFish
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Re: Buying an NES console in 2019

Post by GloryFish » Tue Mar 12, 2019 2:52 pm

@darryl.revok I’m here!

There’s lots of great advice here. I especially appreciate the idea behind paying more for less headache and having a good quality console. A big reason for me asking in the first place is because the only console I have is my childhood console and I don’t want to be stuck without an alternative if it fails.

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