Wednesday, May 19, 2010


The official release date is May 28th, and that is in Germany. It then takes about a week to clear customs and get to my distributor in England. Then it takes 4-5 days to get here from the USA distributor.

As to the prices, those prices on the ChessBase web site don't mean much and most dealers know it. Our distributor adjusts his prices once a year pegged to the Euro. Well, now that the Euro officially sucks (bringing in those countries who show no restraint showed no restraint by the European Union who was more interested in "memberships" than stability (it always comes down to power and/or money doesn't it?)) Then there is country VAT (tax) charges which shouldn't affect us in the US. But international air shipping (freight) is added to the wholesale price too, so, life is not a bowl of cherries!

Some think $20-$50 for a 90 minute DVD is a lot of dough and I agree. So I have been sticking with the ChessBase DVDs which are seldom ever shorter than 4 hours.

Let's see if the distributor revises the prices downward this fall if the Euro is still collecting wind. I wouldn't bet on it! (Remember what I wrote above about money and power.) However, I did notice that while Shirov usually "gets" $40 for his DVDs, this last batch is $38. So there's hope!

I won't be able to publish the retail rices until next week when I ask for them from my distributor. But I can say that I'm already getting orders for Rybka--which is supposed to be even more aggressive and tactical. I must admit, I don't get that. Does it come down to positional wins versus tactical slugfests? There must be defense in there if the equation is to be "balanced." Shredder is an aggressive program but recently they "tamed" it to bring its evaluation function into parity with REALITY.

I think one thing we should ALWAYS be after in evaluations is truth and accuracy (as well as speed). Maybe you can win some games through crazy assaults but if the "opposition comes up with a tactical killer, then, nothing has been gained.

ONE LAST THING: If I depended only on book sales I would be dead in the water as a reseller. I do sell a lot of DVDs. One reason I recently got for LIKING DVDs came from old friend Don Aldrich. He had Heart Triple Bypass and he isn't up to studying books yet (which can be intense) and so he watches ChessBase DVDs. I do not encourage heart problems just so you can watch DVDs! Another reason is that on opening DVDs the presenters cut to the chase so you can quickly find out what the critical lines are. Most DVDs cost you less than $10/hour of watching. That's a good deal.

That ad in Chess Life about preorders is baloney. I'll have these Rybka's as soon as everyone else, assuming the oil spill doesn't pull us under!

Stay Tuned folks.

1 comment:

  1. dear bob long,
    . . . another thing about Rybka 4 is that although i'm familiar with the phenomenon in general -- on one of my shields the motto is: "it'll be somewhat over twice as long" ChessOK [and Microsoft are notorious in my books.Firstly, they promise early and more than delivered; second, they release 'raw' stuff that they 'fix' after they've gotten enough complaints; third, they issue a 'patch' that repairs the worst stuff in their original release. The most vivid example: MSVista -> MSWindows 7. I'm not informed about the timing but an entire new program was a waste in this case.