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Nimh 2013.03.14 08:08 AM

Congratulations to JunAttic for making the 1000th post in this thread!

reaiota 2013.03.14 09:59 AM

Hey~

so I've been listening to ringo since 2006
and I'm still obsessed with her

aside from that, I've been on these forums a countless number of times
and I think it's about time I become a regular

ra_yy 2013.04.30 02:42 PM

Bonjour, I'm a fan of Ringo from Canada. I haven't met anyone else from where I am who listens to her or even knows about her music, except for the people i introduce her to. Sigh. I wish she got more recognition.

I've been a fan since... a year ago when i listened to Muzai Moratorium. Starting that album up put a huge smile on my face. My favourite track and the first i've ever heard from her is Queen of Kabukicho. Favourite album is Kalk Samen Kuri no Hana and Japanese Manners.

I know i've only recently started listening but i soaked it all up pretty fast. I can't read japanese to save my life. so I have a hard to referencing track titles. All the tracks i have are in japanese, because of the symmetry of the track listings. Not as into Tokyo Jihen, just can't ever seem to get into that as much as her solo stuff.

Osiris12345 2013.05.01 04:11 PM

Welcome to the forums, ra_yy! I got into Ringo the same way you did! I loved Kabukichou no Joou when I first heard it.

Tell me, did you use YouTube to find out about her like I did? I was just wondering how you got Muzai Moratorium in the first place. That was how I found the Kabukichou video but now I notice that almost all uploads of her PVs and live shows have been taken down. It's gotten much more difficult for international fans to find out about her.

ra_yy 2013.05.01 06:18 PM

i was searching for music around different places around the world at rateyourmusic, then i saw her on youtube, checked the track listings and listened away. the only way i can get her stuff is from amazon or ebay or some other online store

Glathannus 2013.05.01 08:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ra_yy (Post 86814)
the only way i can get her stuff is from amazon or ebay or some other online store

I recommend amazon.co.jp over amazon.ca, as they could actually charge you less total (even with the international shipping), but Amazon (in any form) probably isn't the best source of Shiina Ringo music in particular.

I don't recommend eBay for people who are new to collecting Japanese CDs, as it's very easy to get tricked into buying Taiwan counterfeits. It's not an entirely bad source for experienced buyers who know all the red flags to watch out for, though. Actually, the Shiina Ringo market on eBay isn't so saturated with fraud, compared to other Japanese musicians who are more internationally recognized. Legit products are the majority among Shiina Ringo listings, instead of the minority. But you should always independently research a Japanese music release before buying it on eBay, so you'll know what it should look like - instead of using the seller's photos as your only reference.

There are other online stores. A lot of us use CD Japan and/or HMV Japan. They're more English-friendly than Amazon Japan, and their shipping is cheaper, too. But don't expect the end result to be cheap. If you don't already know, Japanese CDs are expensive. Maybe not so much if you can get them used, but definitely if we are talking about new. It's not quite so bad, now that the Japanese Yen is weakening (relative to other world currencies), but it's still significantly more expensive than what North American CDs cost, before international shipping even factors into it.

There's also YesAsia, but you should be aware that they are based out of Hong Kong, so although they offer Made In Japan CDs and they're always sincere about what you're getting, they are slower with new releases than any of the vendors based out of Japan, you're less likely to get bonus stickers/posters/whatever specific to the releases, and they are worse about estimating availability of 'backorder' products (which often turn out to be out-of-print). People do have success stories with YesAsia - I got my first couple of Shiina Ringo CDs from there, like 8 years ago. But I see other YesAsia buyers sighing about how long it takes them to receive the latest release which everyone else is already reviewing. YesAsia's main claim to fame was they accepted PayPal for years when no other major vendors (of Japanese music) did, but more recently so does CD Japan.

There are issues with Customs fees which I'm unfamiliar with, as it's not something the United States government is serious about. So if you care about keeping the final costs as low as possible, you may want to see what other Canadians have to say about their experiences with the different vendors, as what's cheap for me (an American) may not necessarily be cheap for you. Supposedly some vendors (or more specifically some shipping methods which not all vendors offer) will slip through Customs more-or-less often than others.

deadgrandma 2013.05.01 08:22 PM

Lets not forget CDJapan's bonus point system... it's well worth becoming a member there rather than just using 'check out'. You get a certain % of the cost of the product as bonus points- 1 point = 1 yen. If you spend over 5000 yen (very easy to do if you're getting more than 1 item) you get another 300 points on top. If you spend over 10,000 yen you get 1,000 bonus points. The Bonus Points then can be used to take as a discount off of your next purchase. I myself usually forget to use them though, so I accumulate amounts of 3,000 pretty easily- giving myself basically an item for free. I'm wondering if they will eventually put a limit on the amount of BP you can use per purchase or if one exists, I certainly haven't run into it. The most I've used at once was something like 3,200.

I advise to buy in bulk lots too, is saves enormously on postage.

Glathannus 2013.05.01 09:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by deadgrandma (Post 86821)
I'm wondering if [CD Japan] will eventually put a limit on the amount of BP you can use per purchase or if one exists, I certainly haven't run into it. The most I've used at once was something like 3,200.

I haven't encountered a limit yet, either.

Six years ago, I redeemed 9400 points toward an order of 4 CDs, which covered everything but the shipping. I don't remember if CD Japan would have let me also cover the shipping at the time, but I know they'll allow it nowadays.

A year ago, I redeemed around 6300 points to cover a purchase of 2 CDs with the shipping. The "Final Order Total" (money out of my pocket) was 0.

The only limitation with the points, is they don't compound. You only earn points by spending actual money beyond what the shipping would cost. The more points you use to cover an order, the less points you'll earn from that order. As with my orders where I was paying shipping or nothing, 0 points were earned. I've had huge orders where I redeemed around 6000 points and earned 2000 at the same time, because I was still spending a lot more actual money than what the shipping was costing.

When I do the math (with the points factored in), I choose to look at the overall situation as: shipping only costs me about $1.50 USD per disc when I'm buying dozens, while the effective value I'm getting out of the BasePrice + Shipping is way beyond what I could get from any other international seller (of Japanese goods) for the same price. It's especially remarkable when you consider that CD Japan doesn't cut corners with the packaging, and they often ship out a day or two early on new releases.

Nimh 2013.05.02 09:23 AM

Ordering through a nearby Kinokuniya (if you've got one) saves a bit of money, since they don't charge for shipping. But discounts are nonexistent.

Book Off just recently opened its largest store in California, at the Lakewood Center Mall. And it was HUGE, with a ton of books for $1 and racks of DVDs for $3. But it was basically a reseller of American products, nothing like a usual Book-Off. It was bittersweet browsing those aisles.

Osiris12345 2013.05.03 01:22 AM

Costa Mesa Book-Off is win. That's where I got MM, SS, and KSK used. My sister also gets used $1 manga there all the time too since she can actually read Japanese. We like to go there whenever we get a chance. I pity the non-Southern Californians here.


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