The Japanese SACD/DVD-Audio Hunting Thread

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Mr. Afternoon

Mixing Engineer & Artist
Joined
May 10, 2021
Messages
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I've gatekept this for far too long, I'm afraid. Only out of pure negligence. I wasn't intentionally doing it, I swear.
Here's how I'm getting all these Japanese Hi-Res...so you can do it to.
The trick to finding out about lucrative titles and getting them involves a little bit of translation magic, luck, and proxy shipping. Not all of us can rely on @Clement to bring back goods for us every time he visits.

For older titles, CDJapan should not be your first stop. For many SACD and DVD-Audio titles that are of interest, they can be found for very digestible prices compared to native US/UK sellers on Yahoo! Japan Auctions, Rakuten Japan, or Mercari Japan.

1691723475868.png

Here's Prism's Present I...which is the most extreme example of a good deal I can find right now. 21 yen! Most titles though range from 1000-3000 yen, which is still a whole lot better than 60 or 70+ USD, like with the same release pictured below from Discogs.
1691724395285.png


But wait, this isn't the complete picture. These discs won't ship directly to your house. If they do, shipping will be expensive since most of these can't be bundled with other purchases. So what do you do?

Proxy Services, also known as mail forwarding services, are the way to go. There are many that have different advantages, so do your research. I personally use ZenMarket because I'm willing to wait an extra month or two if I get to shave down shipping costs by 20 USD. Buyee is also reputable, but pricier. Through these mail forwarding services, you can order or bid on these items, have it shipped to their warehouse. Then they pack it up and ship it to you. Simple as. It gets around shipping restrictions and also saves costs...

You're wasting money buying only one item at a time. With buying one item, you're often spending more than the item's value on shipping. Furthermore, there are additional fees to consider, like Japan's VAT, the mail forwarding processing fee, and the shipping fee to get to the warehouse in the first place. You should buy items in large batches, which is more cost-effective. Although, my definition of a large batch is 3 or more...a good general rule is at least $50 worth of goods.

Now here comes the searching part. Finding releases not listed on online databases is a story for another time, but for ones that are, it's always a good idea to try the name of the item in Japanese characters. You'll often get better searches by only searching for the album name or artist, appended with SACD or DVD-Audio. Always try using English, Japanese, and catalog numbers.

I don't really have anything more to say, I'm waiting for some undocumented releases to arrive.
 
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I've gatekept this for far too long, I'm afraid. Only out of pure negligence. I wasn't intentionally doing it, I swear.
Here's how I'm getting all these Japanese Hi-Res...so you can do it to.
The trick to finding out about lucrative titles and getting them involves a little bit of translation magic, luck, and proxy shipping. Not all of us can rely on @Clement to bring back goods for us every time he visits.

For older titles, CDJapan should not be your first stop. For many SACD and DVD-Audio titles that are of interest, they can be found for very digestible prices compared to native US/UK sellers on Yahoo! Japan Auctions, Rakuten Japan, or Mercari Japan.

View attachment 94963
Here's Prism's Present I...which is the most extreme example of a good deal I can find right now. 21 yen! Most titles though range from 1000-3000 yen, which is still a whole lot better than 60 or 70+ USD, like with the same release pictured below from Discogs.
View attachment 94966

But wait, this isn't the complete picture. These discs won't ship directly to your house. If they do, shipping will be expensive since most of these can't be bundled with other purchases. So what do you do?

Proxy Services, also known as mail forwarding services, are the way to go. There are many that have different advantages, so do your research. I personally use ZenMarket because I'm willing to wait an extra month or two if I get to shave down shipping costs by 20 USD. Buyee is also reputable, but pricier. Through these mail forwarding services, you can order or bid on these items, have it shipped to their warehouse. Then they pack it up and ship it to you. Simple as. It gets around shipping restrictions and also saves costs...

You're wasting money buying only one item at a time. With buying one item, you're often spending more than the item's value on shipping. Furthermore, there are additional fees to consider, like Japan's VAT, the mail forwarding processing fee, and the shipping fee to get to the warehouse in the first place. You should buy items in large batches, which is more cost-effective. Although, my definition of a large batch is 3 or more...a good general rule is at least $50 worth of goods.

Now here comes the searching part. Finding releases not listed on online databases is a story for another time, but for ones that are, it's always a good idea to try the name of the item in Japanese characters. You'll often get better searches by only searching for the album name or artist, appended with SACD or DVD-Audio. Always try using English, Japanese, and catalog numbers.

I don't really have anything more to say, I'm waiting for some undocumented releases to arrive.
The only time I've ordered anything using a proxy service was the Hiromi Iwasaki SACD from Tower Records & shipped by Zenmarket. It was the most confusing transaction I've ever done. IIRC Zen added multiple shipping charges such as one just to get it international UPS and the actual international shipping and other oddities. By the time I was done a $44 SACD cost me almost a hundred bucks to buy. Doing it this way you have wise advice to order a least a few to make it worth while. I realize this approach is the only way to get obscure titles over seas but because of this experience I will go back to using CD Japan & Yes Asia as my first choice. There used to be an online store in Canada called J Pop Help with competitive prices & much cheaper/faster shipping. Alas, they are no longer.

I must agree searching a J or K pop artists name in native language & English is a good idea. I've found something that is a bit better than Google translate. One of the nice things is it often gives a couple of translations to select the most appropriate:

https://www.deepl.com/translator
 
Yes it gets so twisted ordering I lose track.
I had forgotten until I read Dave's thread on Hiromi Iwasaki that I have the "Pandora no Kobako" disc. Time to give it a spin I guess! From CD-4 no less. I got a group of FIM a while back, most are stereo but I think about 5 are mch, from a music friend in Russia. Got some of the TBM (Three Blind Mice) label as well.
 
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As long as you’re talking about Multi-channel titles; I would very much like to know what those undocumented releases are please?
Well they already arrived a while back, and I posted about them!

Lisa Ono - Questa Bossa Mia… Con Alcune Delle Più Belle Canzoni Italiane [5.1 LPCM 24/48 DVD-A]
Dozan Fujiwara & Isao Tomita - Hibiki Kyo [5.1 SACD]
 
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