How Long Before Full DNA Testing Hits $100? Plus Current DNA Sales December 2017

While the title might sound like a pipe dream, several companies are pushing for lower prices for full DNA testing. Currently, a full DNA test will easily set you back anywhere between about $700 and close to $3,000+, depending on which company you go with, how many reads you opt for (30x is considered the minimum by many experts, but some companies will test 15x or lower to 50x or higher). Addit: I don’t know when full DNA testing will hit the $100 (probably $99 since that’s how companies often price things at $99 instead of $100), but I am guessing it will be a lot sooner than many think.

For example, Full Genomes (www.fullgenomes.com) used to offer 1x – 30x testing with prices ranging from $100ish to almost $2,000. Currently, I only see the following Whole Genome tests – 15x ($675), 20x ($795), 30x ($1,200), and a Long Read Whole Genome ($3,250) in addition to Comprehensive Elite Y test ($645) with a recommendation to use MyHeritage (www.myheritage.com/dna) for autosomal testing.

For the below prices, they were accurate for U. S. residents when I checked, but sale prices are subject to change due to various reasons so always check before ordering. The links below are NOT affiliate links; they are direct links. I make no money off the links. At some point, I may add affiliate links, but I will clearly mark the links as such and do my best to include non-affiliate links. I included sale end dates below when I could find them.

To those who think it’s a long way off, that’s what people thought when DNA testing was $10,000, then it crept down to $2,000, then $1,000. With autosomal, I first considered autosomal testing in 2011. At the time, FTDNA and 23andMe offered it for $200. By the time I took my first autosomal test in 2012, Ancestry offered a $100 sale price that became the standard price by early 2013. There have been many sales in the $49 – 89 price range since that time with most of the major autosomal DNA companies hitting the $49 sale price at least once.

Currently, MyHeritage (www.myheritage.com/dna) is offering 2 more or kits at $49 each (ends December 18, 2017). MyHeritage uses FTDNA to process the kits. In the past, they sold 23andMe and various FTDNA kits until they decided to branch out. They were still offering free DNA transfers from most DNA companies although they may not be accepting 23andMe v5 chip tests temporarily.

And 23andMe (www.23andme.com) is offering their kits for $79 (genealogy only, regular price is $99) and $149 (genealogy + health; regular price $199) through December 26, 2017. They also were in the Top Five over the Black Friday on Amazon when their kits were cheaper.

As I mentioned in another blog post, Ancestry DNA (www.ancestry.com/dna) is running a Buy Three Get One Free sale (kits are $79 each for a total of $237 for 4 kits). The sale price wasn’t showing up on Amazon when I checked earlier today, but they generally price match if you contact them with a link to the sale price. There can be exceptions to the price matching, but most of the time, they have price matched the different DNA companies that are available through Amazon.

FTDNA (FamilyTree DNA) is running its own sale with Family Finder (its autosomal test) for $59 with various sale prices on Y-DNA, mtDNA, and combination packages as well as a Big YY-111 sale (https://upsdownsfamilyhistory.wordpress.com/2017/12/14/ftdna-special-offer-for-big-y-testers/).  I can’t find my earlier blog post (WordPress may have been hungry and ate it), but here’s the sale prices for FTDNA (sale through December 31, 2017) and they are offering current customers weekly coupons on different products.

Family Finder (autosomal DNA) $59 (regular price $89)
mtFull Sequence $169 (regular price $199)
Y-37 $129 (regular price $169)
Y-67 $229 (regular price $268)
Y-111 $299 (regular price $359)
Test bundles (each bundle is for one person, not to be split among several people)
Family Finder + Y-37 $178 (regular price $258)
Family Finder + Y-67 $278 (regular price $357)
Family Finder + mtFull Sequence $218 (regular price $288)
Family Finder + Y-67 $442 (regular price $556)
Big Y $475 (regular price almost $600) with free upgrade to Y-111
For Big Y users with Y-37 – upgrade to Y-111 $59
For Big Y users with Y-67 – upgrade to Y-111 $39

LivingDNA (https://www.livingdna.com/en-us) is on sale for $99 (regular price $159) and it includes some mtDNA and Y-DNA (males only) information in addition to autosomal. It presently doesn’t offer matching, but indicates matching will be an option soon.

Helix (specifically the National Geographic Geno 2.0 Next kit – https://www.helix.com) is on sale for $99.95 (regular price $149.95 and used to be $199.95). If you have previously tested at Helix, they knock $80 off the price (although when I checked a few minutes ago they were including the kit for free, something they have offered on numerous occasions which brings the price down to $69.95). You can also find the Geno 2.0 Next kit at National Geographic’s website, https://shop.nationalgeographic.com/category/geno-dna, and it shows the $69.95 sale price.

YSEQ.net isn’t offering sales, but expanded its offerings from Y-DNA only to include mtDNA (several levels, including full mtDNA), full DNA (ranging from $740 for 15x; additional $510 if you upgrade to 30x; and an extra $1,060 for 50x, and not counting certain extras you can add that will drive the price above $1,800), and a very large Y-DNA SNP ordering (over 60,000 SNPs you can choose from) . YSEQ is looking at some interesting changes for 2018 and I look forward to seeing what they do.

Another new kid on the block (with LivingDNA being one of the last new kids on the block) is Dante Labs (https://www.dantelabs.com/pages/home-usa). I only see two options: Whole Genome Sequencing $694.73 (regular price $989.14 – sequence full DNA) and Whole Exome Sequencing $496,90 (regular price $700.11 – sequence 20,000 genes).

A not so new kid on the block, DNA Consultants (https://dnaconsultants.com/) is offering 24% off ($212, regular price $279 – use code HOLIDAYS) . It’s a test I don’t generally recommend, but some people find value in its results and it is having a sale which is why I included it in the list. It tests a lot less markers than the Big Four (Ancestry DNA, 23andMe, MyHeritage, and FTDNA) for a much higher price.

This is a fairly comprehensive list of most DNA testing companies still offering DNA testing: https://isogg.org/wiki/List_of_DNA_testing_companies  Most companies on the list don’t offer matching and many of them don’t offer useful tools for genealogical purposes. Best to explore each company to decide which ones meet your needs and your budget.

If I missed any sales, please let me know and I will update this list.

 

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Posted in 23andMe, AncestryDNA, Dante Labs, DNA, DNA Consultants, FamilyTree DNA, Full Genomes, Helix, ISOGG, MyHeritage DNA, Uncategorized, YSEQ.net | Leave a comment

Ancestry DNA Buy 3, Get 1 Free Family Pack Offer

I am not seeing this offer on my Ancestry account, but it is reported at https://www.genealogybargains.com/free-dna-test-kits-family-value-pack-sale-ancestrydna/. I see the offer if I log out of Ancestry and go to the DNA section (www.ancestry.com/DNA). Basically, it’s buy 3 Ancestry DNA kits at $79 each and get the fourth one free ($237 + shipping; note the free shipping code doesn’t usually work when they do sales). As of the original post date of this blog post, Amazon was not price matching the Buy 3, Get 1 Free offer. However, you can always show Amazon the Ancestry link and if they get to it fast enough, they will usually price match. Ancestry broke the 6 million DNA tested mark before the big Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale where they sold another 1.7 million kits. If they haven’t broke the 8 million kits sold by now, they should in the very near future. I believe they will easily hit 8 million kits sold before December 31st.

If Amazon price matches the Buy Three, Get One Free, then you get free shipping as well. For Amazon Prime members, it’s two business days; for everybody else, it’s 5-8 business days unless you pay to upgrade to faster shipping.

In comparison, MyHeritage (https://www.myheritage.com/dna) is currently offering buy 2 or more kits and get each kit for $49.  I don’t see the same deal on Amazon, but again if you show Amazon the link, they typically price match.

Posted in AncestryDNA, Autosomal DNA, MyHeritage DNA, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

FTDNA Special Offer for Big Y Testers

I had tested at FamilyTree DNA (FTDNA) for a number of things, including Y-67 and Big-Y. I hadn’t upgraded to Y-111 as the upgrade was usually in the $129 range with some sales lowering it to $99 or $109. Received an e-mail today (non-transferable unlike most of the year end coupons which are transferable), ending December 31, 2017. After ordering the upgrade, I received a bonus reward ($30 off mtFull Sequence) good until December 20, 2017.

Y-111 Upgrade Pricing

  • Kits with Y-37 & Big Y – upgrade to Y-111 for only $59!

  • Kits with Y-67 & Big Y – upgrade to Y-111 for only $39

They are offering a free upgrade to Y-111 in an earlier e-mail if you purchase Big-Y ($475 sale price) during the year end sale (note: you normally have to have Y-37 or higher to order Big-Y although with the Big-Y sale it sounds like you can have a Y-12 or Y-25 to qualify)  and it’s not always easy to figure out where to find Big-Y if you haven’t ordered Big Y previously). I went ahead and ordered it because I don’t expect it to be this low for a while and I had some extra Christmas money. The previous pricing for a Y-67 to Y-111 upgrade for me had been running $129 when not on sale and between $99 – $109 on sale.

Do I expect to see a lot of new matches upgrading from Y-67 to Y-111? No and I won’t be surprised if I get zero new matches. However, I have wanted to know what the extra markers would show. Having done the Big-Y, I don’t expect too many additional SNPs from the upgrade, but I will be checking to see if I gain a handful.

As an FYI, I transferred my Big-Y results to YFull.com when they initially offered transfers for free. Currently, it’s $49 to transfer your results to YFull from FTDNA’s Big-Y or FGC’s Comprehensive Elite tests. By comparison, YFull is missing 13 of the Y-111 markers and an additional marker is low confidence.  This was done before FTDNA updated Big-Y recently and I’m not paying $50 to see if it changed since the FTDNA update shouldn’t have added new STR markers.

If you qualify, the coupon should show up at https://www.familytreedna.com/my/Y-111-special-upgrade (you have to be logged into the site to see the coupons if you have one or more kits that qualify).  I am glad to see Y-111 getting a boost as many people stop Y-DNA testing at Y-37 or Y-67 because they don’t many, or any, matches at Y-111. The reason they don’t get matches is too few have tested to Y-111. It’s worth noting that FTDNA shows matches among Y-DNA, mtDNA, Family Finder (autosomal), and Big-Y testers. I have some Big-Y DNA matches that don’t show up as Y-DNA matches. I do have 300 distant matches on YFull.

 

 

Posted in BIG Y, DNA, FamilyTree DNA, Full Genomes, Uncategorized, Y-DNA, YFull | 1 Comment

CCleaner Malware Issue Reported

As reported by several sites, CCleaner had malware added to one of its updates. You can find more information at https://www.techspot.com/news/71018-malware-discovered-ccleaner-puts-millions-users-risk.html. You can also see it at https://www.cnet.com/how-to/ccleaner-was-hacked-heres-what-to-do-next/. If you are not sure if you have the malware version, best to uninstall it and then go to the CCleaner website https://www.piriform.com/ccleaner/download (note – scroll down the link and choose the version you want; I use the free version as it more than meets my needs, but there are advantages to the various paid versions.

I also use Malwarebytes (link has the option for the free or paid version) in addition to the free version of Avast (link has options for the free version and to compare the free and paid versions) for my anti-virus needs. You can also use any of several reliable download sites, but be warned some of the free download sites install additional bloatware as part of their download if you aren’t careful when do the download. I prefer to use a company’s actual site to avoid the risk of added bloatware although some of them do add their own bloatware so it’s always good to compare different sites to see what the expected file download size will be. Don’t blindly accept a download if it includes a pre-checked checkbox unless you read what else is going to be installed and you are comfortable with the extra download. Better to uncheck the box if you are not sure.

Posted in Anti-Virus/Malware, Avast, CCleaner, MalwareBytes, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Gencove DNA – Two Options

Gencove offers two options for DNA testing. For $59.99, they will ship you a kit. Allow 6 – 10 weeks for results once they get your kit. If you tested with a DNA company (23andMe, Ancestry, FTDNA, not sure about other companies, but you can try), you can upload your results for free. It takes about 30 minutes for them to process your results.

Privacy link can be found at  https://app.gencove.com/privacy

 
Ethnic results are similar to my ethnic results at the other companies (MyHeritage, FTDNA, Ancestry, 23andMe, and a few others).  I used my 23andMe results for the first upload. Uploading several of the other companies to see how the ethnic results compare and will post about those once I finish the various uploads.
You have the option of opting-in or out of your DNA being used for research. You can change your mind later if you desire.
Technology used by Gencove:
If you upload an existing DNA file, we use genotype imputation to ‘fill in’ some of the missing genetic variants that were not directly measured. If you send in a saliva sample, we run an ultra-low-coverage genome sequencing assay on the Illumina platform. The exact sequencing specs are variable across runs, but we’re generally in or near the range suggested by Pasaniuc et al. (2012) of 0.1–0.5x genome coverage.
The above is from their FAQs section.
Addit: I have not seen any other reports about Gencove and have posted a question in a Facebook group that deals with DNA.
Addit 2: They only ship to U.S. addresses for now, but don’t appear to have this restriction if you upload your results.
Addit 3: I checked out their About page and looks like the company was named Seeq before changing its name earlier this year.
Addit 4: Additional information from their FAQs section:

The most cost-effective technology for genome-wide discovery

Gencove has developed a new low-coverage Whole Genome Sequencing

(WGS) process to replace commonly used SNP Arrays. We sequence a

random 10% to 20% of the genome in contrast to a SNP array, where

about 0.02% of the genome is covered. Using a method called

imputation, we can compare the sequenced bits to reference genomes

and fill in many of the blanks.

What is genotype imputation?

 

Genotype imputation is a method for using measured genetic variants

to fill in the “missing” ones that have not been measured. It works

because we know from thousands of sequenced genomes that there are

set of genetic variants that are all found together, and so if you

measure one of them you can guess with high probability to remainder.

Learn more on Wikipedia.

What reference panel do you use for imputation?

We currently use the 1000 Genomes Phase 3 reference panel. We are

experimenting with the Haplotype Reference Consortium data, if you

have specific reference panel needs, please contact us at

support@gencove.com.

 

 

Posted in 23andMe, AncestryDNA, Autosomal DNA, FamilyTree DNA, FTDNA, MyHeritage DNA, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Find-A-Grave Beta Available

After eighteen (18 months) of delay, Find-A-Grave finally released their beta for people to try out. You can find it at https://new.findagrave.com (instead of https://www.findagrave.com). You can also click on the link on the main page of Find-A-Grave. So far, the views expressed by those testing it out are less than positive overall with more a sense of resignation. It does have some positives, but according to many the negatives far outweigh the positives. Your Mileage May Vary (YMMV) and you can decide for yourself what you consider the positives and negatives of the new site. No word on exactly when it will go live. Here’s the blurb that shows up when you go to the Beta site

You can express your opinion (pro, con, neutral, or mixed) on Ancestry’s blog, in the Find-A-Grave Forums, and/or through the Beta Feedback bubble on the Beta site. They are committed to the new site so it’s highly unlikely Ancestry will listen to complaints that don’t involve large scale dropping of paid subscriptions with the reason being the new Find-A-Grave site.

One of the biggest improvements (if it works better than some early reports indicate) is the ability to do a multiple edit on one screen versus having to choose individual edits for the same person and submit them one at a time. There may be a problem with this feature, but can’t tell if it’s isolated incidents or a wider issue. It may also be an issue where somebody submits a Relationship edit on the old site and another person tries to add another relationship on the Beta site.

One of the major downsides is a mixed blessing. You can search by city, county, and country, but you would need to know the city as defined by Find-A-Grave. I ran a test case using a cemetery that is in one city, but shows as a city subdivision/township on the old site.   On the new site, it is correctly shown under the city name and not the subdivision/township name. It will be interesting to see if they do it across the board or if you have to narrow it down to county (or equivalent) level.  Not a problem if you are looking for an uncommon name, but if you are looking for John Smith, Mary Jones, etc., it could be a large problem.

I haven’t experienced some of the negatives reported by others, but mainly because I tend to open new Windows when possible instead of using the Back button.

Another downside is the addition of ads within the search feature. On the old site, it’s obvious where the various ads are. In the search feature on the old site, the ads within the search field are denoted with a different color. Under the Beta site, they show up as “Sponsored” and look like very similar to regular memorials. The key difference being the word Sponsored and the lack of birth/death information. It’s easy to miss if you don’t know to look for it. Comes close to bait and switch. At least with the old site, it was obvious which one was the ad.

Edits are now under the Contribute link, but that’s not an obvious selection. Better to have a separate link/tab for Edits with a way of knowing you have edits to look at. Under the current system, I can easily see how many, if any, edits I need to look at.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Cemetery, Find A Grave, Genealogy | Leave a comment

AncestryDNA $69 Sale Through August 15, 2017

Received an e-mail from Ancestry announcing their DNA tests are on sale for $69 (regular price $99 although they were recently slashed to $79 as mentioned in my earlier blog post) until August 15, 2017. This is one of their better prices so grab it while you can. The e-mail said no limit on number of kits ordered. To save on shipping, Amazon.com is now showing the $69 sale price. If you have Amazon Prime, you can get it in two (2) days. For non-Prime members, it will take a few days longer to get it.  It appears they may have reached the five (5) million kits sold based on the snippet of the ad showing the link. I didn’t screenshot the ad since it was on my phone, and I am not seeing it now.

Posted in AncestryDNA, Autosomal DNA, DNA | Leave a comment