Home Insights Awards 2017 Awards || Top Breaker Production || BreakerCulture

2017 Awards || Top Breaker Production || BreakerCulture

I’m so tired of watching breaker videos! 😉 I’ve spent countless hours reviewing 50+ breaker videos/channels/FB Live/etc… I wanted to make sure that when we rolled out our awards this year, we put every ounce of effort into our analysis. And for this category — Top Production — it required a lot of extra note-taking, attention to detail, and commitment to the process. We are excited to bring you our awards, read on!


Production Category?

So what is this category all about? Well, it’s pretty simple…we wanted to award the breakers who we think do an unbelievable job with their live productions. There is a heck of a lot that goes into running a successful group breaking business (just read some of our interviews). You’ve got the website, pricing, inventory, marketing, delivery, sorting, etc… each component is crucial to being able to earn your spot in the marketplace. But, what tends to elevate the great breaks or destroy the poor breaks is…. their LIVE PRODUCTION.

From the moment you kick-off the break until the last pack is ripped, breakers are trying to do their job AND convince you to come back and spend more money with them. There are so many things that can go wrong during a break, some are negligible and some are absolutely crucial. If quality of video is less than HD, you’ll lose customers. If you don’t have a decent software platform, you’ll likely lose customers. If you are inefficient and slow, you’ll likely lose some customers. If you are bland and lack uniqueness, you’ll probably lose a few customers.

This is the reality. Much of the battle for the customers attention is won or lost during the break itself. You’ve got them in the room…now it’s time to win them over.

Well, there are some breakers in the marketplace that have absolutely failed at this piece. It’s a shame to see so many breakers that don’t invest $70-$100 and buy themselves an HD webcam…. or at least learn how to use the one they bought. It’s unfortunate to see breakers crowd their screen with irrelevant data or 3rd + 4th angles of the same scene. It’s a bummer to see breakers spend 1.5 – 2x as long to break the same product. These are missed opportunities to impress your audience and grow your business.

But wait! There are some breakers who do an outstanding job their production and we want to point them out in this award post.

The Criteria

When we came up the grading criteria for this category, we tried to take as much subjectivity out of it as possible. Regardless, beauty is still in “the eye of the beholder”  and these are values that we agreed on and reflect our views. Here are the categories we scored in:

Production Quality

This is all about the actual quality of the stream / video. A perfect 10 would require HD quality video (on all views) and HD quality audio. We also took off points for background noise and consistent out-of-focus moments during the break.

The median score in this category was a 5.8

Entertainment Quality

This category is all about engagement. Was the breaker constantly finding ways to engage with the audience? Were they attempting to do/talk about things that brought the customers into the conversation? Were there extended amounts of dead space? Was the wrapper constantly being ripped apart right in-front of the microphone and piercing all of our ears?

The median score in this category was a 5.2

Unique Factor

This category is focused on the intricacies of the production itself. What did this breaker do to be unique? Was there a relevant ticket on the bottom? Did they use transparent type to keep the focus on the video? Did the have a completely different video angle? Were they completely bland and not focused on being at least a little bit different?

The median score in this category was a 5.1 

Efficiency Score

The final category is the most objective of all. I picked a couple of standard products to use to measure duration for all breakers. I measured the time from the beginning of the break until they wrapped up their break…and I averaged them out. I then ranked everyone according to their times and then gave them a score based on their ranking. Some folks like LONG breaks….but most people don’t.

The median score in this category was a 5.5

So….. let’s get to the awards! I’ll start with the subcategories and follow it with the OVERALL winner.


TOP PRODUCTION — QUALITY

Winner: BH35

Breaker Page is: HERE

Follow him on Twitter: HERE

Why?

After 50+ hours of breaker video and looping through the top 20 a couple of times, I was convinced there isn’t a better combination of quality than Bryan @ BH35 Sports Cards. His video quality is perfect in every regard. It’s full screen video, but it’s zoomed at the perfect level. The focus is rarely (if ever) an issue and every card is seen crystal clear. Best of all, he pays attention to his audio!! He broadcasts in HD audio. Folks, this is a big deal. If you are a breaker, do yourself a favor and go spend $100 and buy yourself this YETI Microphone (Blue Yeti USB Microphone – Blackout Edition)… the best $100 you’ll spend.

If you absolutely desire a perfect quality broadcast, go check out BH35 and see why he is the top in our quality category!


TOP PRODUCTION — ENTERTAINMENT

Winner: Crackin Wax

Breaker Page is: HERE

Follow him on Twitter: HERE

Why?

Okay, seriously guys. Christopher @ Crackin’ Wax knows how to put on an entertaining break. When you join or watch one of his breaks you immediately feel like you are a part of his weekly show. It’s so impressive how he can turn a 4-box mixer break into a 45-minute segment of entertainment. This takes the ability to communicate well…and also use technology to grab our attention. The Crackin’ Wax team has figured it out and deserves your attention.

Chris also scored high in the Unique category because of the way he set-up his draft list / logo / info bar using transparency. This is a BRILLIANT way to present that information because it’s important info but not something that should block out the view of the camera. By doing this he keeps your attention on the camera and everything else he is doing to keep you entertained.

Absolutely incredible work by Crackin’ Wax. 

PS – They are doing a ton of cool stuff for Charities… hard to complain about getting great cards and supporting some awesome causes. 



TOP PRODUCTION — UNIQUE

Winner: Red Zone Breaks

Breaker Page is: HERE

Follow him on Twitter: HERE

Why?

So the unique category is probably the most subjective of all 4. I’m looking for the breaker that has gone above and beyond to add pieces that are unique but still align with who they are. There is just not a better example of this than Red Zone Breaks. If you didn’t know any better you’d think you were watching an ESPN breaker channel (which would be awesome!). The dudes are Red Zone have figured out how to bring together a lot of content LIVE during the break. You’ve got TWO rolling tickers… one with draft order and another with NFL news. Most breakers don’t know how to use the ticker…. RZ has nailed it.

In addition, RZ has made sure each piece of the production brings out some of their personality & branding. All of the colors are aligned to branding. The (old-school rock) background music is tastefully inserted and keeps your head bopping. The 2nd + 3rd camera’s are inserted, but don’t get in the way of broadcast. The poster board and mat are all positioned perfectly.

This is just a perfect example of being UNIQUE!!! No one is doing what they are doing… that is the definition of being Unique!

Awesome job guys!


TOP PRODUCTION — MOST EFFICIENT

Winner: Mojo Breaks

Breaker Page is: HERE

Follow him on Twitter: HERE

Why?

The vets of the breaking world strike again. The guys at Mojo Break have scientifically perfected the art of breaking. There are so many things the newer breakers should be learning from what Mojo does. One could argue that they’ve nailed down the process so well that’s it can come across as robotic, but regardless it’s fascinating to watch. They ranked high in most categories, but they dominated in the category of MOST EFFICIENT.

Again, I timed the same products (half-case + case) across 50 breakers and on average Mojo was the most efficient. They are able to do this for a couple reasons.

  1. They know what they are doing. The break itself is not the trial-run (like some folks treat it). It’s your moment to shine. The dudes are Mojo understand the product, navigate the packs/boxes, know the hits, and aren’t blindsided by the nuances of products. This helps them move along at a great pace. 
  2. They use their team well. On case breaks, they don’t have one dude sorting and spewing off irrelevant commentary. They use their team to open and pass cards to the break table. They use other teammates to sleeve and scan. They take advantage of what most breakers don’t have…extra help. 

Mojo knows how to run an perfectly paced break without sacrificing the opportunities to focus on great hits and fun moments.

Thank you for continuing to set a great standard!


OVERALL PRODUCTION — TOP 2

RUNNER-UP —  KT Authentics

Breaker Page is: HERE

Follow them on Twitter: HERE

Why?

KT Authentics has been around the block. In fact, they have over 5,500 videos posted on their YouTube Channel….sweet mercy. They are a well oiled machine that pumps out breaks in the 100’s. But… not lost in all of this… is their attention to detail. The production moves along at a lightning pace (Top 5), quality is consistent across breaks (Top 5), and they keep the conversation/entertainment moving (Top 7). Their solid scores across the board moved them to 2nd on the list.

These guys break a wide variety of product (from WWE to Marvel to NFL) but still understand their audience/product. They could easily get lost in all craziness with their mixed products… but they keep the break moving and give attention to cards that deserve it. Quality is solid (not perfect) and when zoomed-in is crystal clear.

Well deserved runner-up…and absolutely worth your time!

PS: They really need to fix that squeaky chair. Can get quite annoying. 😉


OVERALL WINNER:

The Clubhouse Breaks (STL Sports Cards)

Breaker Page is: HERE

Follow them on Facebook: HERE

Why?

The overall winner for TOP Breaker Production in 2017 goes to the guys at The Clubhouse Breaks (formerly STL Sports Cards). The Clubhouse Breaks posted solid scores across every category, and was in the Top 3 in Efficiency & Uniqueness. These guys have become the breaker known for their aerial view. They have nailed the over-the-top angle and use their extra real estate to their advantage. You get the World Poker Tour feel when you are watching… it’s refreshing.

They also move through their breaks at a consistently good pace. You can jump on and get into a few breaks with The Clubhouse and still have time to hang out w/ friend & family that evening. For pete’s sake, thank you for taking that seriously!

Finally, the breaks are entertaining because the quality is top-notch and appropriate cards get the right attention….and…. the conversation is very tasteful. There is a perfect amount of interaction with the audience and educating of the product/sport.

Awesome job gents, huge fan of what you’ve done with your production!


Summary

So there you have it! 100’s of views and 40-50(ish) hours of rewatching break videos. We worked really hard to put together a list of information that is both helpful to you (collector) and the breakers in the hobby. A lot of breakers have taken advantage of their opportunity to produce amazing break feeds/videos. Thank you for working hard and making this hobby even more enjoyable!

As a side note, there were a TON of incredible breakers who also put produce great videos/streams. But one or two of the categories came in much lower and impacted their score. For instance, Top Shelf Breaks (Page) nailed 2 of the 4 categories…but efficiency came in near the bottom. Or Blez Brothers (page)nailing Entertainment but had some of the lowest production quality — and Live Case Break (page) was top 5 in Quality + Uniqueness but was dead last in efficiency.

Unfortunately, everyone can’t win and we had to gauge scores across the board. This is just an opportunity for folks to keep improving and crushing their Production this year (2018).

Thank you for reading, as always LEAVE COMMENTS BELOW and follow us on social @BreakerCulture (Twitter/Instagram/Facebook).


 

Check out the rest of the 2017 Awards on our landing page HERE

6 COMMENTS

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Matt Murphy - Cardboard Treasures

Great stuff with a lot of valuable info. That said, I couldn’t disagree more on these parts: “It’s a bummer to see breakers spend 1.5 – 2x as long to break the same product. These are missed opportunities to impress your audience and grow your business.” and “Some folks like LONG breaks….but most people don’t.”

I expected that to be the case when I started breaking, but the feedback and retention have both been excellent. Many (perhaps even most) of the customers I’ve had have been impressed that I don’t rush through their break in order to get to the next. I keep hearing that I’m limiting my growth by doing this, but what I’m seeing is continued growth, and I think that can be attributed to my style. Most new people who watch and interact live have positive things to say about my showing every card and keeping an on-screen scoreboard.

Instead of throwing my label on the same bottle of ketchup most others are selling, I decided to sell mustard instead, and it has found an audience that continues to grow. Let’s say you’re right, though, and most people don’t like mustard. Maybe only 10% of the consumers like mustard and 90% like ketchup. Would I be wiser for me to make ketchup and and compete with 100 others for 90% of the condiment market, or should I just focus on that 10% that likes mustard and try to dominate that market?

Matt Murphy
Matt Murphy
3 years ago
Reply to  Tyler Wilson

Thanks for the reply, Tyler.

Top 7: that’s great for our first year!

I’m glad you have this category; I wish all breakers would read it. Whether someone is using an expensive set-up or just streaming from their phone, quality of production is a critical part of group breaks, not something all breakers value, and something we should all continuously strive to improve.

Matt Murphy - Cardboard Treasures

Aaaaand…my point was completely ruined right out of the gate when I misspelled my own last name.

Hobby Legends
3 years ago

Too fast with some products and you ruin any chance a customer had on grading their cards. I’ve been in too many breaks where my cards all come scuffed, sure it was quick but if I get scratched cards with fingerprints it ruins the customers ROI. I prefer breakers that take their time with my product. If you grade your cards break duration is an insignificant matter so much as handling of products should be. For instance, I like to be able to grade base refractors, that’s not happening unless the breaker takes time to sleeve even the basics before sorting. Cutting too many corners inevitably results in a decline in quality on the cards. ( Albeit this likely only affects base chrome and Base refractors it’s crucial that I can get $20-$30 for gem refractors when buying into Breaks, otherwise my ROI is limited unless I hit a monster card)