View Full Version : Plate camera price inflation...

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09-11-2010, 08:45 PM
Just saw this bargain priced ICA Ideal 246 on ebay: 190442831568 :whistling:.

Before anyone asks, I'm not connected to this seller!

09-12-2010, 12:41 AM
I notice they're in Italy. Maybe they're still pricing in lira?


09-12-2010, 09:20 AM
Ha! I love it! The high price is due to a 'family history' so they never sell at lower prices, but they don't actually TELL you what the important family history is. This guy should be selling Sham Wow on TV. Cheers, Richard

09-12-2010, 09:48 AM
It is a bargain compared to his 1960 Rolleiflex 3.5 at 55 000.

Paul Sorensen
09-12-2010, 11:46 AM
The seller has never sold a single thing. Their feedback is all as a buyer and they have no items actually showing up as finished yet. I am pretty certain that their photographically related items will not be sold, either. I don't know prices for any of the other items listed for sale, but my gut tells me that they are doing this on everything. Wow.

10-06-2010, 12:05 PM
Maybe I should ask the seller if he/she is interested in buying my ICA Ideal for only $30,000? ;)

10-07-2010, 03:58 AM
I arrive on this unknown forum by the suggestion of a friend. It seem that those items have been seen around the world. Good publicity for the company that advertises them.

I agree with Paul Sorensen, but I'm still forced to do some clarification, although I'm not related to this buyer. I too have encountered these items on eBay and residing in Italy, I decided to go into that. I went personally to the seller, even in the suspicion that eBay was the author of all this turmoil, whereas the value of this great online business reside mainly in how often the site is clicked (do not forget that eBay earned on the stock market, and especially in reason of popularity).

I arrive in their offices, rather elegant, and made of nice people. It is a Antiques Advisory company, they have very interesting collections covering various areas, but in my opinion their prices related to the cameras only are the result of a lack of knowledge of the market.
Nearly all other objects (I represent an institutional client and I am an expert in ancient manuscripts and antique books), the prices are appropriate, because of the documentation they provide about the authenticity and origin of the pieces. They seemed to me quite reliable, also because they are working with some investment banks.

In my opinion, certainly questionable, they did an experiment. They tried to test the online market, that in discussions with one of their agents has emerged to be unappreciated by their policy. The point is essentially another, the cause has a name and it is called "eBay" and its system that allowed many people to apply often very low prices on precious antiques that are worth much more, helping to create a philosophy of low price. I can't believe that a structure of that entity, runs the risk of burning a name for such simple and obvious error.

I repeat, I am not in any way connected with this buyer, but I feel bound to disagree on the philosophy of low prices, as well as on the philosophy of inflated prices. In both cases something is cooking in dark waters. Looking carefully at their reasons and justifications from their personal listening, by documentation they given me during the meeting and certifying the origin of these pieces, I am not to judge nor to waste too much time discussing the topic.

Everyone is free to ask what he wants for what he has. It is a law of the market as old as the business community and even this is called "capitalism." It is then up to the buyer to accept or not accept, without too much crap. Moreover, there have been mad people that paid hundreds thousands of dollars for a guitar that belonged to Elvis, or similar. This caused every similar items belonged to some fool and drug addicted singer become a famous piece of quality (the logic of "this belonged to that ...").

Is it right in your opinion, that such guitars or dresses belonged to this or that singer costs so much? in mine, not at all. I prefer spend hundred thousand dollars for a Tiffany Lamp or for an antique painting, or again for a really ancient book, than not for such junk.

Personally, when I want to buy cameras, even for personal collection, I never use to approach eBay, as well as to shop online, but I contact directly collectors or accredited auction houses that can offer collateral guaranties about the origin and the belonging of the piece. Be sure, out of the specific cameras we discuss here (that must be however verified), a camera belonged to great artists as David Hamilton or to Helmut Newton, or again referring to the sources of photography, at Joseph Nicéphore Niépce, will never cost cheap and only an idiot can believe this.

The price does not affect me much if the pieces have an history and are in perfect conditions, but it is clear that everyone has their own philosophy. I want to be objective and explicit, I think this whole story has mostly disturbed some wise guy on eBay selling the same things, and sees himself in the race over, but surely cause a great adv for the seller.


10-07-2010, 10:26 AM
ooops sorry.
errata: where you read "buyer" must be read "seller".

10-11-2010, 11:36 PM
Ye gods. I'm "cooking in dark waters".

10-12-2010, 01:07 AM
Ye gods. I'm "cooking in dark waters".

It's an amazing phrase, but I can't work out what it was actually intended to mean. Maybe I'm doing it too??!? :-)


10-12-2010, 03:46 AM
Well, it has a nicely Shakespearian whiff about it, it reminds me of "to take arms against a sea of troubles". Or Homeric, "a wine dark sea". I'd like to think I'm taking arms against a wine dark sea of daft ebay sellers.

Or maybe I'm just being silly? ;)

Ian Grant
10-12-2010, 04:14 AM
In my search to find the manufacturer of my Quarter plate camera I've come across some equally anomalous prices, and had a couple pointed out to me.

This one takes the biscuit £25,000/$39,500 (http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/MARLOW-BROS-M-B-n0-4-/180546215575?pt=UK_Photography_VintageCameras_SM) :D They aren't that rare, uncommon yes, but nothing outstanding and not that desirable.

Similarly there was a camera identical to mine on sale in Israel for $2,500, maybe not so bad still a high price but then prices are higher in some markets/countries. Typically a good plate camera will fetch 3 times as much in Istanbul compared to the UK.


10-12-2010, 04:53 AM
That settles it, I am going to retire early and make a fortune by selling the junk out of my cupboard to the gullible.

10-12-2010, 03:26 PM
"If it's old, it must be valuable."
The mantra of the greedy and know-nothing seller down through the ages.

11-02-2010, 06:26 PM
Ian Grant----While all of us who speak English as a first language pick on each others countrys nuances of pronunciation, re-read his description. That is not English as spoken by someone from any So-called English speaking country I've ever heard of. Could this be that scam artist that has a post box in England, but actually lives in Nigeria? ?Que pasa?

11-10-2010, 06:38 AM
I've gotta be honest here... I didn't actually understand what he was saying :0(

As with all things, market economics comes to bear surely?

Ian Grant
11-10-2010, 07:09 AM
Ian Grant----While all of us who speak English as a first language pick on each others countrys nuances of pronunciation, re-read his description. That is not English as spoken by someone from any So-called English speaking country I've ever heard of. Could this be that scam artist that has a post box in England, but actually lives in Nigeria? ?Que pasa?

We have a large immigrant population and I know from personal experience that even families who have been here 40+ years often have members with poor or no grasp of English.

The seller has 100% feedback so it's unlikely it's a scam, in addition some sources say that manufacturer's cameras are rare. By coincidence one of my friends was selling a nicer camera of the same make and asked what I thought it would make, my estimate of £250-300 turned out to be spot on as the camera fetched £269.

So misguided ideas of value but not a scam :D


11-10-2010, 12:11 PM
Strange - I had very little difficulty with making sense of that long post! I suppose that could be because I'm not a native English speaker, and i am somewhat familiar with Italian too. There is no doubt in my mind that the poster is Italian.

I wonder - is this the same seller who sells Soviet FKD plate cameras as "antiques"? Or at least TRIES to sell them? If so, their knowledge os cameras is so poor that I would never ever buy anything from them, no matter what the provenance. They may not realise it, but that kind of thing can only harm their reputation.

I do actually own a lens I bought complete with provenance. But that is a Steinheil prototype, not a Whatsitar used by Whosit to take Thatpic...

No, it's not that seller. There is/was another Italy-based antiques dealer who did/tried that about a year ago...

11-11-2010, 01:13 AM
When I made the original post I had two thoughts in mind. The first was that the ebay listing would give a few plate camera enthusiasts here a bit of amusement. I think Roberto took exception to that. The second thing, which I didn't explain (but hinted at a little too obliquely in the title) was that plate camera prices seem to be rising. I do like the phrase "cooking in dark waters" though!

Perhaps I should add, I'd never make fun of a persons efforts in a second language, I have a daily struggle to communicate in the Korean language.

I've recently seen another plate camera item listed for crazy money, a Rada rollback for several hundred dollars...perhaps a crazy plate camera listing thread, or last plate camera purchase thread would be of interest / amusement to others!

11-11-2010, 03:01 AM
Perhaps I should add, I'd never make fun of a persons efforts in a second language, I have a daily struggle to communicate in the Korean language.

Not sure if that was directed at me? I hope not. This is someone who clearly has a good grasp of the English language, I just didn't understand the crux of what he was trying to say. Actually, I reckon that if I heard him say it, then I may well have picked up on it - I just found it hard to read.