Slow down, dude. I don't think you understood mine. If he was getting 1.167 per refinery (below quota), that is darn good compared to a trade port. I know the refinery has to be well-placed. The trade port is getting 1+x, as you said. You multiply the 1.167 by 2.2 on the selling end, which = 2.5. That means "x" has to be pretty high, to the tune of 1.5. And that's on the selling end.
Fair enough, by multiplying by 1.167 resources by 2.2 credits per resource (selling end) you demonstrate you understand. Your previous quote does not:
I didn't really follow that. But if a refinery is producing 1.167 vs. the trade port's income of 1, plus...whatever...that's darn good. That or the "whatever" had better be darn good.
Compares 1.167 resources per sec vs 1 credit per sec without converting resources to credits.
The 1.167 estimate is based off of Raging Amish's memory of what his refineries were producing. If you use the methodology I demonstrated, you can work out very close to what your tradeport is going to produce.
So that pretty much establishes, refineries are worth building. That brings on the next question: with quotas, not enough extractors around, research costs, extra cost to build trade starbases, etc., at what point does it cross over and trade ports are the better way to go? Right now for me, it's really pretty simple: I just don't normally use logistics slots for trade ports. They just go on starbases. I juggle that priority with building well-placed refineries and media hubs. Maybe relocate my capital, too, but I haven't figured that out yet, either.
You still build tradeports...you just build refineries in good spots, as needed to supplement your economy. If you look earlier in this thread, I linked to an old thread where I show how to calculate your break even times. Besides, it is different for each race and situation. TEC have to pay for the technology anyhow on their way to cargo holds and pervasive econ. Most buildings pay for themselves within 15-20 minutes. If you think a game is going to be over within a half-hour, no need to be making more econ, just crush the enemy. If you are not sure it will be over in the next hour, building more econ will pay off.