Newsstand vs Direct
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26 posts in this topic

A totally newb q here: Why are there price differences between Newstand and Direct version of certain issues? Can one of the knowledgeable folks give a solid reasoning for this phenomenon? Why is one more collectible than the other? hm

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:facepalm:

 

 

Just because this icon hasn't been used that much yet on these boards. :)

 

 

Scarcity may play a part in one being worth more than the other.

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I've also seen there is sometimes a preference in regard to the "UPC box" and whether it shows a bar code or a Cap head or Spidey head for example.

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Welcome to the boards - our knowledgeable folks are on vacation so I'll give it a try.

 

The short version is that when the comic book companies focused on the Direct Market they more or less abandoned newsstand distribution. This made the newsstand versions more desirable to some collectors since there are less copies printed of this version AND they are less likely to maintain their original condition when compared to Direct Market books (which are sold primarily to collectors who have used bags/boards for the last 30 years) The more desirable/valuable version may not be the better looking version - ie - Amazing Spider-man v2 36 where a beautiful black cover is valued lower than one marred by a UPC code... (shrug)

 

I don't think CGC acknowledges the difference on the labels as a rule but the difference is identifiable by looking at the cover or the numbers in the UPC box. Newsstand versions used to conform to general UPC standards while Direct market didn't require bar codes - it changes based on age of your book. Today, I think all publishers now name the distribution method in their UPC boxes that appear on both cover versions; that's part of a Diamond Distribution initiative for uniform coding.

 

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Welcome to the boards - our knowledgeable folks are on vacation so I'll give it a try.

 

The short ...

:grin:

 

Thanks!

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Newsstand copies are slightly more desirable in high grade because these copies went non-comic book stores and weren't handled as nicely

 

Generally, the newsstand copies don't command premium over direct editions. Of course there are those random exceptions.

 

I couldn't careless about which edition my comic is.It's a matter of personal preference.

Edited by This is water

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Sometimes NS versions are slightly different, making them more desirable. Especially in the 90s with holofoilgatefoldembossedchromiumacetate covers and such. The NS versions are harder to find in high grade and usually have a more regular cover

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Directs are prettier.

 

 

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Directs are prettier.

 

:banana:

scan0347.jpg

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Directs are prettier.

 

 

Newsstands are far more difficult books to find, especially within the last 5 years or so. If you want a pretty book, go to the LCS. If you want a challenge ... try and find the same issue in Newsstand format.

 

Personally, they should command a price premium and have a natural limited number available simply due to the difference in the distribution model. Newsstands that weren't sold were sent back to the distributor (unlike the directs) and subsequently destroyed. Therefore, a natural limitation is created.

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Directs are prettier.

 

:banana:

scan0347.jpg

 

Back in the days when the direct versions often didn't have the UPC block, lots of covers benefited from the lack of it.

 

Lately I notice that some newsstand versions are a dollar more than the direct counterparts, I guess because sales are lower in those outlets. For example, the price on the final few issues of "Incredible Hulks" on the newsstand was $4.99, instead of the $3.99 that was published in all the preview blurbs and was apparently the price for the direct version.

 

I think there's a certain small pride in having newsstand versions, if only for the collector to know that he/she bought it at publication time, since most back issue purchases are going to be from dealers who have stacks of the direct edition.

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To summarize, generally:

 

1. There are fewer around (distribution required destruction, more shipped to direct market, no long boxes full of back issues in dealer's storage unit).

+

2. There are fewer in grade (these were sold to non collectors, not immediately bagged and boarded).

= more sought by collectors

 

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Here's a very good example of a very difficult find. I'm sure there are other boardies that have seen this ... took me three years to find a copy.

 

UXM #500 NS

 

PICT0156.jpg

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Though I never noticed it with other publishers, some Image Comics titles actually used completely different paper stock for Newsstand and Direct Market books.

 

Newsstand copies would use newsprint, while Direct Market copies would use a higher quality glossy paper.

 

Like others stated, the other main differences were the inclusion of a UPC (or sometimes even a UPC sticker) on the front cover, and occasionally a difference in price.

 

A lot of online shops don't differentiate between Direct and Newsstand books, but will for some titles where demand is high enough for the Newsstand editions. For example, MyComicShop and Mile High both indicate Direct or Newsstand for Spawn comics, but not for Savage Dragon or ShadowHawk even though they exist for all three titles.

 

And yes, generally Newsstand editions in higher grade will fetch a premium due to the perceived rarity, and the assumption that most would have been either thumbed through off the rack by kids at the grocery store, or purchased by "non-collectors".

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My understanding was that on the onset of the DM, those books designated DM editions, notably the ones with the UPC bar code struck out were rarer than newsstand. The DM grew quickly, during the 80's the DM editions would catch up with newsstand and eventually surpass them. Into the 90's UPC bar code comics became rarer than DM editions. Some collectors because of the perceived rarity, might place a premium, but in general I believe that most collectors don't.

 

 

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From 2000 and on newstand copies are very scarce on some books. Before that books like ASM 25 and Thor 25 had non enhanced newstand copies that only had like 12K print runs too.

 

There are still direct snobs that wont buy a newstand, but as far as collectibility they will do nothing but gain ground due to scarcity and hard to get in high grade.

 

Edited by Fastballspecial

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I have been getting emails through Ebay with people wanting me to check my group lots for direct edition or newsstand editions. They are also emailing me about second and third printings. I have seen a growing interest in these questions this year.

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I have been getting emails through Ebay with people wanting me to check my group lots for direct edition or newsstand editions. They are also emailing me about second and third printings. I have seen a growing interest in these questions this year.
Its only a matter of time.

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