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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Dvd, Video tape, Audio tape & Compact discs. » » The high price of DVD's (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Slide
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The other day I was watching a magic dvd. It was a very good dvd: the instructor was an excellent magician, great with a crowd, it was recorded with a "real" audience (not like an L&L audience) so you could really see how he performed. He taught about 6 tricks.

One of the tricks was a marketed gaff coin trick that cost about $60 on its own. Another trick, the magician said: I learned this in the pages of Genii. I was able to look up my AskAlexander subscription to the complete Genii, and sure enough, there was the trick, just as he taught it.

Another trick was from Phil Goldstein's Focus. I pulled the book down from the shelf and sure enough, this great trick is sitting there, just as the magician performed it.

As I looked at the Focus book I see that it had about 60 or 70 other effects. And then I looked at my library of a hundred or so magic books and my collected Genii and I'm thinking... you know. This DVD cost me $30-40 bucks and I learn half a dozen tricks, most of which are already sitting in my library, in books I haven't looked at in years. How many thousands of great tricks are just sitting there waiting for me to uncover and make my own.

then I started thinking about just how inefficient and costly learning tricks from DVD's actually is.

Then I started thinking; I really don't ever need to buy another book, or DVD for the rest of my life. All I really need to do is open the vast library of information at my fingertips and do the hard work of going through the tricks, changing them to make them my own, and creating my own repertoire that is not based on mimicking this wonderful magician who is just trying to add to his revenue stream through teaching.

All I need to do is just do the work.
Hugokhf
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Good luck with that
ASW
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Hardly an original observation but, yes, spot on Bill.
Whenever I find myself gripping anything too tightly I just ask myself "How would Guy Hollingworth hold this?"

A magician on the Genii Forum

"I would respect VIPs if they respect history."

Hideo Kato
splice
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Quote:
On 2011-06-27 13:15, Hugokhf wrote:
Good luck with that


You're right, it's just so much easier to grab the latest, hottest DVD and bang - magic! Who needs books, anyway? Historians and no one else, that's who.
Paul
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What was the DVD, Bill? Were the tricks taught with permission?

Paul.
Slide
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Paul, I have to assume they were. It is a popular DVD. The actual dvd doesn't matter, I think it applies to most DVD's.
fonda57
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Sounds like you are at the point where you will just start creating your own stuff, if you haven't already.
By the way, Focus is a great book
I j
Harry Lorayne
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I probably did something wrong!! Just checked Vol. 1 of my 4-vol. "Best Ever" DVD set, and - there are over 30 items, plus - "Over 40 sleights fully exlained!" it says on the cover. Cost to the retail buyer is much less that $1 an item. The cover of Vol. 4 says "30 Routines! 14 Sleights Fully Explained" (and there's an hour of me doing memory stuff in front of a lay audience. I did SOMETHING wrong! HL.

PS: Is Splice serious or is he joking?
[email]harrylorayne@earthlink.net[/email]

http://www.harrylorayne.com
http://www.harryloraynemagic.com
Slide
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Harry,

I think Splice was being sarcastic.
Swann101
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Dvd's and magic books are selling too cheap in my opinion, the prices should be much higher to protect our secrets more!
splice
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Yeah, just a bit of sarcasm. But I'm perfectly fine with people waiting for someone to put, say, the Stevens Cull on DVD while I personally wait for David Ben's oeuvre (after tracking down and reading a bunch of other references, I do love treasure hunts and what you find that you weren't looking for).
Magnus Eisengrim
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You do get far more material from books than you can from DVDs--at least dollar for dollar. This can be expensive for hobbyists. But if you are working for money, even getting one item for your repertoire repays the price of any DVD.

John
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.--Yeats
Mary Mowder
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Just a bit about the L&L comment. I know it was just an aside but....

I've been in an L&L audience a number of times.

The shoot is grueling for the performers and it was often really hot and quite a long set for a mostly lay audience ( sometimes an 8 hour day with a generous lunch break) as well as starting at an unusually early hour for most Close-Up guys. Despite that, these guys were genuinely entertaining.

There are reasons from a video editing point of view to want to start an effect with some applause but generally speaking those people were having fun and the applause and reactions were genuine. Yes, they were an unusually good looking crowd but they were really enjoying themselves.

While the seating is better than most Close-Up guys can expect, the audience had no alcohol (a frequent advantage in the real world).

I just get tired of hearing the casual put down of L&L audiences. Louis went to a lot of trouble to get an audience so that Magicians could see a better performance from the Talent. Any one who has ever performed for the camera alone knows how it can kill a great effect. I've seen some great effects come of very poorly when done in this manner and a magician might easily pass an effect over when it is potentially golden.

Is it real world? No, no Magic on Video is real world but I'd rather see the Magic in a good light than see an uncomfortable Magician getting no feedback going through the motions.

-Mary Mowder
*Mark Lewis*
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Perhaps DVDs have to be expensive so the producer can make a little profit while the going is good. After all the odds are that within a few months the *** things will be copied and distributed all over the place for virtually nothing. And books are beginning to go that way too. It is a pretty terrible thing for the creators and very bad for magic since the creators will be discouraged from creating any more because it isn't worth the hassle of being ripped off.
Slide
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Mary,

My comment was not meant as a swipe against the L&L audience. What I meant was that the audience in the DVD I'm referring was at a bar, some were a little tipsy, some were heckling the perfomer, some weren't paying attention: in other words, a real life situation and you got to see how the performer handled those situations. the L&L audiences always seem to me like they are having a good time.
Mary Mowder
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Thanks Bill.

-Mary
motown
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The moment you put a camera in front of people and their aware of it, you won't totally get a real life situation.

While I like DVDs, I would agree books offer a better value over all. A great example is the New Al Schneider book.
For the cost of 2 DVDs youe can buy this huge tome and many others.
"If you ever write anything about me after I'm gone, I will come back and haunt you."
– Karl Germain
Cameron Francis
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DVDs and books have different advantages, Yes, you can fit a lot more material into a book. On the other hand, some tricks and sleights are better taught on dvd as they can be difficult to explain in the written word.

Another thing to consider: it is very expense to produce dvds. Well, professional dvds, anyway. And you simply can't fit as much material on one dvd as you can in a book.

And, it should also be noted, not all books are created equal. While there are some books loaded with great stuff for a fairly reasonable price, there are also a lot of over priced books that contain about as much material as a two dvd set.

But look at the new Solomon dvd. 3 discs. 23 effects. $50. That's comparable to a good magic book both in content and price. And it's an awesome set.

At the end of the day, guys, the market determines what producers produce. Lately, people want dvds. So producers produce dvds. Hard copy books simply don't sell as well anymore.
aussiemagik
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I agree with you Cameron. Sometimes I wish that I would have had dvd's available back in the day. Growing up in Wyoming there aren't an abundance of mentors around. I first learned the Elmsley with Twisting the Aces, meaning it was at the fingertips. No big deal since cards weren't my thing. Now, however, several years later I'm turning back to cards and that's a hard habit to break. I can't help but think that if I had something to see then I would've learned the proper form.
motown
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And of course not all DVDs are created equal even though they cost the same. There are way to many out in the market place that are poorly shot, poorly lit, where the performer hasn't taken the time to rehearse the material or understand how to teach the material. Like anything, how good a DVD is depends on who's involved in the project.
"If you ever write anything about me after I'm gone, I will come back and haunt you."
– Karl Germain
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