4 Ways to Identify a Valuable or Rare Pop Vinyl
Pop Vinyl figures by Funko may appear to be flooding the pop culture market, but not every character or design done is a dime–a–dozen.
Whether it is no longer in circulation / had a limited run, has been labelled as an exclusive or a variant look, or is a deluxe edition, a rare Pop Vinyl is definitely a Pop Vinyl worth owning. The harder they are to find, the more in demand they are, and therefore, the more they are worth.
Identifying a rare Pop Vinyl isn’t as hard to do as you might think either, as there are generally only a few different ways to class one as potentially valuable.
Keep reading to find out which ones will keep their worth…
1. Chase Sticker
It is believed that for every 6 Pop Vinyls made, one Chase version is made.
A Chase Pop Vinyl variant will generally have a circular, yellow sticker on the front window of the box, in the bottom right hand corner. But what makes a Chase figure so significant, and in time, such a rare Pop Vinyl?
Well, they are different, often in shape, style and size. It may use a new mould or pose, come in different colours or clothes, or be holding a new object or prop.
They are often produced at a 1:6 ratio compared to a regular Pop Vinyl too, with some even being a 1:24 ratio.
Although retail prices for Chase characters don’t always differ that much from a standard figure, once purchased, they immediately double or triple in price, especially as they get more and more difficult to come by.
2. Convention Exclusive
Collectors of Pop Vinyls know that a weekend long convention is a great place to snap up a new figurine.
Sponsored by Funko and only found on–site, a convention exclusive Pop Vinyl is something that has been designed and released specifically for the occasion, and isn’t available to buy online or in–store (yet).
Some of the most popular events to get new or rare Pop Vinyls at include Comic Con (especially New York and San Diego), Fan Expo, Fanboy and WonderCon across the USA, and Oz Comic–Con, Supanova, PAX and ComiXpo across Australia, held annually in many of our major cities.
These days, a lot of convention announced Pop Vinyls are available via pre–order, released at the same time or a little bit later in retail outlets anyway, so they’re not as collectable as they used to be. However, if you nabbed one before 2015, chances are that Pop Vinyl wasn’t given a general release (especially not here in Australia), so it could well be a rare one worth hundreds – even thousands – of dollars.
And obviously, any that have been signed or autographed at a convention meet–and–greet are very valuable too.
3. Limited Edition
Another way to tell if a Pop Vinyl is unique or not, is whether it was deemed a limited edition, aka made in a style that was not mass produced.
There are many reasons why a Pop Vinyl could be called a special edition or part of a speciality series. Perhaps it was made to celebrate the anniversary of an iconic franchise (think Harry Potter, Star Wars, Game of Thrones, Master of the Universe etc).
It could be a US exclusive (unavailable in any other part of the world), or a deluxe set combining characters, props and scenery, or maybe it was released in partnership with a specific retailer or major brand.
Other ways to identify a limited edition or potentially rare Pop Vinyl is by its finish. While the average Pop is coloured to match the character it is meant to cartoonishly portray, variants can be covered in anything from chrome and metallic shades, to glitter (diamond collection), blacklight, glow–in–the–dark and even flocked (a peach fuzz like fur) and scented!
3. Old / Vaulted
If something is old, out–of–date, decommissioned or obsolete, it means you can no longer buy it. As a result, it becomes highly sought after.
Old Pop Vinyls work much the same. Mould sizes and styles have been refined and perfected, so Pops made in the early days of production are now considered “vaulted.”
At first it may seem like a mistake to go out and buy old Pop Vinyls, as they are often still available and in some cases, are even selling at heavily discounted prices. However, as the years go by and all the remaining stocks are scarce or bought up, they will increase in value.
Again, Pops sold pre 2015 are becoming more and more desirable and favoured by collectors.
And don’t forget to always keep them in their original box to maintain value!
Collective Consciousness is a small, family run business operating in Melbourne, Australia. We are an online only operator and our aim is to provide our customers with every day, low prices on their favourite pop culture collectables. Restocking is constantly taking place, so be sure to keep checking out our current range. We appreciate your business.