Ridiculous resale price of vintage equiment

The price of used vintage is downright beyond ridiculous nowadays.

It seems like many hispters are buying crap based on the looks and many flippers are happily milking them.

As an audiophile and collector this really pisses me off... sure I could sell my collection for stratospheric numbers but then what would I do with my hobby?

When I see good looking stuff, like an ARC D70 MkII selling for as much as a crappy sounding, unrestored Marantz 2240.. well, I croak. Heck, I gave one of those away because they are not very good.

Today I was comparing my really recently rebuilt ( and I mean, really rebuilt, not just "recapped" ) Marantz 2325 and Sansui G-7500. The Marantz is dark but warm, the Sansui,which sounds a lot better than the Marantz, paints a nice musical landscape but has no real depth, etc... I gave them both the best chance, driving them from the pre-out of my CJ preamp so they are getting an outstanding source... and yet, well, they sound vintage.

Is the Marantz worth $2500? Is the Sansui worth $1500? From an audiophile point of view, nope. They look good, but my DIY Aleph 5 monos, my ARC D70 MkII, and a bunch of my other amps/preamps sound far better... and yet, they are not overpriced.

OK, except for the buffoon in eBay who was asking for $26K for his Pass Aleph 2 amps.

At least the poseurs have not found Quad yet.

What do you think? Are these prices interfering with your hobby?  


No they're fine. I'm a Mac guy.. The only thing better than Mac Vintage is more Mac vintage. Price out a pair Model 9 Reissue. Sansui when it's done right is one of the best sounding valve amps around.. Marantz has a flavor that's hard to beat if it's not doing bass duty. I love Marantz # 9s and Strathearn ribbons.. 

A lot of work to rebuild some of these units. Try a C20. 100 caps alone, not counting a phono rework and hotrod the PS. Sure sound good..

Note that I’m not referring to old truly vintage gear.. I’m not negating that older stuff, usually with tubes in it, are worth rebuilding because tubes have a sound quality (mostly in the midrange) that makes them extremely appealing. Take a Fisher... clean it up, put new tubes.. or take say a Nakamichi PA7 MkI with a knock off of Nelson Pass’ Statis... but that’s stuff that WE audiophiles into the hobby know about. So, we know what’s worth money.

I’m referring primarily to stuff built in the 70s that looks very good but sounds... pffft... the issue is that as the prices of those things goes skyhigh, it puts a damper in the market as honesty and integrity goes out the window. eBay is the best example of this at play... then you got places like Reddit filled with people that really have NO clue about audio quality and are getting really terrible advice... ( Wow, dude, that 8 track you paid $200 at Goodwill sure looks rad... )...

Here’s a flipper.. he turned down my offer... ;-)


Here’s another one...

The Marantz products of the 50s and early 60s have little to do with a 74 (73?) Marantz 2220 who someone is listing for $1349..99.

I know how much it costs rebuild cost, trust me.   But $1349.99 for a 2220 receiver?

Right now I got the Sansui G-7500 playing in the background... I paid a ton to get it redone, took a lot of work to find the actual replacement transistors. The Marantz 2325 is on the dining room table right now... it just doesn’t sound as musical.

Yet, these are some of the best products out there. Why then would someone list a Superscope 7 watt receiver for $350 bucks?

It just makes no sense except for ignorance and greed.

I find with the current climate of high rents and house prices as well as job losses due to Covid, people are trying to sell equipment way beyond its worth.


Found a guy trying to sell a 1988 NAD 7020e tuner/amp for $580.

Seen many examples of this over the past year.


I don’t think it’s people who need money, I think it’s a combination of people staying at home, having not many things to spend money on and as the prices started to go up, the flippers stepped in and took it from there.

In regards to used NAD components.. that’s a case where they are not "sexy" even though they sound really good. I have a Monitor Series 1700 pre/tuner and a pair of 2200 amps... and they punch really way above their price point. Yet, no one seems to love them.

While a crappy ’73 Superscope receiver with 7 watts is listed at 300 bucks, the 1700 barely breaks 200. Go figure... such is the distortion in the market.

not only gear, NOS tubes have taken hike as well, very glad I stocked up when I did. There‘s a dude called Bangy Bang tubes on ebay charging eye watering prices for really commonplace stuff..

Buyers always set the price, never the seller, because the price is what someone is willing to pay. Supply and demand.

We are in a bubble, and the shortage of chips just adds to the price tag of used equipment whether or not it is something enduring. It doesn't interfere with my listening for now, given the equipment I use. I had to replace an A/V pre-pro recently for the small A/V system here (nothing to do with the music systems) and that wasn't easy since a lot of appliance type CE is backordered. 

We are doing a kitchen renovation and I was shocked that the dishwasher we ordered actually arrived. I trust that will improve with time. As to Saul Marantz/Sid Smith stuff, it's been high priced for a while. The OP doesn't sound confused about what is enduring and what isn't. 

There was a shop here in Austin, now closed, that specialized in '70s receivers and big bookshelf type speakers. Kind of a time warp. They didn't really have anything I would buy (except for some serious antique poster art), but I visited a couple times. The one guy's name was.... wait for it...

Robert Johnson. 

They also had a coffee bar. Because this is Austin. :)

selling prices of the sought-after 70's stuff (sansui, marantz, pioneer) have probably doubled in the last ten years or so, probably driven by the resurgence of interest in vinyl. considering that many  of these pieces are now 50 years old, look great and still sound good, it doesn't really seem that indulgent--a lot of folk wouldn't think twice about dropping a couple of hundo on a bottle of bourbon or couple of grand on a painting. it does grind my gears when sellers ask big bucks for old stuff which has always been junk, which has the effect of pushing prices for desirable stuff even higher.

Supply vs. demand. Quad amps are still available because they are easy to repair, not so for some other vintage equipment. Keep an eye out for some ESL 57's or KLH 9's. Heck, even a Phase Linear 700 series 2 with all original NEC outputs.😎

You take the Fisher. I sold mine. Account for inflation and don't worry about any chumps overpaying. BFD

In general, I suspect that the inflation genie has been let out of the bottle.  It manifests itself inconsistently.

Second hand items are generally not included in official inflation figures (that may depend on the country).

I paid my Sansui AU 7700 100 bucks and pay for its refurbishing a little bit than 100 bucks... Yes i was lucky...

So good the Sansui is though, and it is a marvellous machine sound wise and with flexibility, i would never had paid much more than the price i paid for 7 years ago...

Why ? Because when you pay between 1000 and 2000 bucks with no warrent for a piece of gear near 50 years old, i prefer to buy my dreamed Berning Zotl amplifier at 6,000 bucks...I see my Sansui now near 2000 bucks 1/3 of the ZOTL price... For the sound quality it is not a high price, but for an old piece of gear it is way too much....And the Sansui so good it is and it is, cannot beat some new tech....

And i love my Sansui... His S.Q. /price ratio is over the roof, unbeattable...At the price i paid...Under 300 bucks refurbished...

Understanding economics isnt difficult, being an audiophile isnt difficult.... But being both must be.

Anybody who think with basic can understand basic in acoustic and economy...Yes...

It is not number theory nor Quantum physics here...


But it is "difficult" to figure our small room acoustic at no cost for ourself... Try it...It takes me brain work...

And it is "difficult" to understand economy at the world level and in his relation to city level....What is simple matter is to understand the level of insanity now....Most people dont figure it out though because insanity is their normalcy...

And if economy cannot be figured out without politic, ecology, and many other related  fields, likewise audio cannot be understood completely only with acoustic we need also dealing with many different engineering fields from recording aspects to play back  engineering and electronics etc...

Things  appears  simple at one level and complex at other one.... Sorry....

Then understanding economics really is difficult, and understanding audio really is difficult....I will say the opposite of you sorry....

Because you are an humble dude, congratulation! Understanding both is over the head of most people indeed you are right here....

Myself being less humble than you, i go on ANYWAY with my ongoing study of both at my level of understanding for sure....But the key to understanding is studying...Nothing else...Irony cannot replace brain work nor sarcasm save  in audio thread ...


«If you understand toilet bowl mechanic or your bowel movements this does not means you are a city sewage engineer »-Anonymus Smith


Understanding economics isnt difficult, being an audiophile isnt difficult.... But being both must be.

If you want to accurately assess a market, you have to look at actual sale prices. Taken alone, asking prices mean nothing.

An item's market value is the price agreed upon by a willing seller and a willing buyer.

Value is a subjective/objective factor that cannot be erased or replaced by market price evaluation...

It is a personal motivated complex choice to buy a vintage piece....

My own choice is explained above about my Sansui decision...

But someone else could want to pay 2000 bucks for my Sansui for complete other reasons than mine and for his specific needs...

For example there exist on the contemporary market of new product no amplifier at any price with the possible flexibility choices associated with the Sansui AU 7700..

Then somebody with other needs than mine can claim that 2000 bucks is not a too much high price to afford a piece of gear so useful in flexibility of use....

Anyway no other contemporary amplifier at any price is comparable with the great number of his features and possibilities ... NONE...

Then value is not price market...

Value is a  more stable factor than price market which  fluctuate  around  offers and demands relation... 

Collectibles are a good example of great values with sometimes low resale possibilities...

Stop shopping. Stop obsessing. Put on a record, CD, the net or any other source. Turn it up.

Economics is what the super-rich tell the Government what it is ! NO JOKE ,

My first year at Uni I took both Econ 101 and Logic 101 .

I was going nuts as one totally made the other a lie .

Went up to Econ Prof and told him my thoughts .


He looked at me for about a minute and nicely said to me , ": Yes, Econ is a mess but one decided upon " .


P,S . at one time I sold Sansui in a huge audio store in Madison , WI .

We sold 15 % of all those amps in the world !

Why ? owner let us sell FAR cheaper than any in USA . I would rather have one , or 2, of the Sansui today than anything else , The tuners were unreal !

As were the 823 TT’s . Speakers sucked , but Rockers loved them.

As did AR, Altec , KLH, Polk 10 , , Advent and others.


Once sold 5 full Sansui systems to 5 players of Green Bay Football Team , went fast and ! made 700$ which was a lot 50 years ago .


Great post! thanks to say it shortly...

I will only add that economy is a pyramidal control chain explained long ago by Bernard Mandeville...

( For the anecdote the inventor of cancer drug "snake oil" first original product method is the father of the first Rockfeller, the con artist William Avery "Bill" Rockefeller called "devil Bill", who educated his son in his own personal "economy" theory and Rockfeller history after that was key moment in the personal education of Bill Gates in alleged "philantropical economy" theory and they called their globalistic control method : Gates and Rockfeller foundations; this anecdote resume almost modern economy save for the banking system which is another story explained by the bank of international settlements history after world war one)



Logic is a mess in most brain because almost nobody can even figure out Aristotle tool value and his limit explicitly understood by Aristotle himself...His logic is related to his metaphysic and not reducible to any abstract formalization at all...

The working brain must work with logic yes but at a level way over logic to be effective in his reach...

Logic cannot teach us how to see a flower....And like Goethe demonstrated in his marvellous book about plant dynamical morphology, most people had never SEEN a plant and they are even not conscious of this fact for the rest of their life...Classifying something with a name by programmed HABIT is not an active perceptive seeing experience....

It is the same for acoustic: applying an equation will not solve a small acoustic room problem sorry...You must "see" the room and take the necessary listening experiments to solve the problem and tune the room...

Economics is what the super-rich tell the Government what it is ! NO JOKE ,

My first year at Uni I took both Econ 101 and Logic 101 .

I was going nuts as one totally made the other a lie .

Went up to Econ Prof and told him my thoughts .


He looked at me for about a minute and nicely said to me , ": Yes, Econ is a mess but one decided upon " .

It can tell you 2x4 ain’t 5 which can be helpful .

90% of cut your head off guys would not have a Foundation which was not taxed at 5%. .

Who knew it was a Rockefeller's fault that an old Sansui integrated was worth more today than 5 years ago? 

You think that you are spot on about me with your sarcasm...You are not completely beside the target for sure... 😁😊

And i thank you because your two posts are very good and humorous and witty and SHORT...

But one this is said, yes the impact of the Rockfeller foundation in america education is so huge, that uneducetad mass specialization is one of the cause of audiophile ignorance beside marketing snake oil method...

Then we are BOTH right...

Save i spare my sarcasm when i can do it at the expanse of others....

I am less humble than you are for sure though ... And i say it WITHOUT sarcasm....

Truth matter most than my own post to me though....it is because of that that my posts had some CONTENT over any arguing with or without sarcasm....

i spoke too  much for my own good and i will mute myself now....😁😊

Who knew it was a Rockefeller’s fault that an old Sansui integrated was worth more today than 5 years ago?


Wow. Maybe it’s me but I don’t see where the confusion is coming from.

Just like cars , the new ones will be better in every way for less money, and true with many other things. 
Perhaps the confusion is the audiophile folks here think purely in terms of buying something with no emotional involvement and only it’s performance matters? 
I have a very nice main system, all “ new” stuff but also have vintage gear, Marantz  2325- Pioneer 1050- Yamaha 640- JBL L100 - Apt Holman- Adcom etc and love it all and the sound because it brings me back to listening to music when I was young. BTW some of it sounds really good! 
Yes the prices are getting high but have you noticed a BMW 2002 from the 70’s is big money? 
Some buy vintage to get something they wish they had, some to revisit stuff they had and then the hipsters want a look and some rarity. 
They all are enjoying it and isn’t that the point?

The prices can vary widely. I’ve seen at least one shop that specializes in fixing up vintage gear and they sell for a very reasonable price, sometimes a small fraction of what some others similar might ask. Depends on the local economy.

Value and the associated price is dependent on what the buyer will pay.  Look at the price of used vinyl if you have any questions.  

Yes the shop I know of with good prices on vintage gear also stocks and sells a lot of records and gets a good price for those so I expect the gear is mainly a way to get new customers who will buy records which is where the profit actually is.

The discussion on what constitutes "value" is centuries old. I won’t go there.

@cleeds provides the one most are familiar with, and is accepted in a wide variety of circumstances.

But to clarify in the context of this thread, that a market price may be agreed upon does not mean that anyone else other than the buyer and seller agree that that is its value.

Many may consider that to be over priced (a rip off, price gouging, ridiculous), and others consider it to be under priced (a bargain, "good" value).

That’s all. And if that can be understood, then good. KISS.

At least one book has been written about the theory of supply and demand.  Can get a bit tricky when there are stocks (vintage, NOS) as well as current production which may offer only an imperfect degree of substitution.

" I have a very nice main system, all “ new” stuff but also have vintage gear, Marantz 2325- Pioneer 1050- Yamaha 640- JBL L100 - Apt Holman- Adcom etc and love it all and the sound because it brings me back to listening to music when I was young. BTW some of it sounds really good!
Yes the prices are getting high but have you noticed a BMW 2002 from the 70’s is big money? "


Oh, I look at the ’sold’ prices first, honestly.

Anyhow, interesting you’d bring up the 2325.

I just had a Sansui G-7500 and Marantz SR2325 rebuilt... ALL the boards were redone... new caps, many resistors, low level transistors, NOS output transistors for the Sansui, rebuilt power supplies, relays, lights (no LEDs), etc. etc... I brought them up to a fully AS NEW condition, except the power supply caps are faster, stronger and more powerful.

Played through my ADS L810s (bought new in 78), the Marantz sounds... DARK and slow... sorry, it does look like the cockpit of a 747 but that’s it. It doesn’t sound so good. Reminds me of my first Marantz, a new -then- SR2220B. The Sansui, OTOH, has nice pace. That one has been on the family since new in 78. Neither paints a deep soundstage, but the Sansui is light on its feet and feels like sunlight, painting a nice left to right image with instruments floating within a shallow depth. OTOH, the Marantz sounds like a dark rainy night and the instruments don’t have body.

I suppose I will hook them up to the Maggies and see, mostly to bring in modern speakers with world class soundstaging. But I doubt the Marantz will pick up the pace, even though it has more power.

Mind you, the rest of my stereos are not new either, I tend to buy used, except for the RME ADI Pro FS R AD/DAC everything is at least 15 years old -and I got the RME used too... So are my DIY Aleph 5 monos and DIY First Watt F5 (through Audiogon), etc, etc... indeed, as I wrote, the speakers I was listening to the Marantz and Sansui are a pair of ADS L810s I’ve owned since new. I got tubes, FETs, solid state, Class D, Class A, AB, you name it. Commercial, DIY, you name it. I’m only missing a nice Sony VFET.

(Note... JBL L100... I went for the East Coast Sound... hence ADS L810 in ’78, no West Coast sound for me).

(Note 2, I spin records... Linn LP12, Lingo, etc, etc.. and do Tidal HiFi.).


Just because it’s vintage, doesn’t mean it’s worth it. I mean, technology has moved on significantly. As audiophiles we know which ones are Good For The Ages and which ones are sonically for the dump. A modern AVR is for the dump, IMHO, but a 30 year old Nakamichi PA7 MkI is for the ages.

So, today, people are paying more for a vintage receiver than an Audio Research D70? As much as an ARC VT200 Mk I? Anything from Conrad Johnson... etc?

Fools, sorry.

I guess so long as they don’t affect the price of real stuff that us audiophiles really want.

I think I’ll sell the Marantz but keep the Sansui. At least I can say that whenever I have one of my components rebuilt it is done with care and deep know how.  I can wait years to find someone who knows, and cares, about their work.  And money is not usually a limit.


Oh, the 2002? Not worth it. Perhaps a 2002tii but even so that would be a PITA to tune. I used to have a ’70 Datsun 510 with a Webber carb. Any modern econobox today, with suitable good tires, will leave that 2002tii in the weeks... I know because my Datsun always outran even the 2002tii.

Nostalgia is one thing, but I don’t want to pay for it.


And this new found greed, with the flippers, is killing the joy of being an audiophile. Like the guy who wanted $26K for a pair of Pass Aleph 2’s. I actually asked him if he had done a typo... nope. Needless to say, he never sold them. Or the used dealer than wanted 4000 for an integrated... I offered him 3000. He refused. Eight months later he finally sold it for 2500. Fool. He was greedy and blind to his greed, so he lost money. (It was in Audiogon, btw).

I enjoy dealing with audiophiles who know their stuff. I’ve made acquaintances and a few friends. Being in SoCal, I’ve had the opportunity to drive to pick up components and have spent many pleasurable afternoons with such people. When I got my latest used Maggies, I brought my wife along with me and we met a great couple down in San Diego.

I established long distance relationships with builders and buyers and sellers. The DIY builder has redone 7 amps for me now and I’ve just commissioned a pair of new DIY Aleph 2s... planning on building a pair of First Watt F5 Turbo V3 in the fall.

Excellent, having fun getting my stereo to sound like music. not a stereo. ( My wife’s words).

Got to know a local guy up the freeway who is doing my receivers. Likely will do some trading of stuff that I don’t want/need. Great guy.

But these flippers are opportunists who don’t give a damn about our hobby. They will "restore" components and ruin them.

My belief is that good components are things to be shared and passed on to the community. We are just holding them for the time being and eventually we should pass them to others to enjoy... reviving the components with honesty and respect.   My kids are an example... killer systems since they were kids... now they're young people with great audio setups.

Just my idea.  Perhaps Quixotic but honest, I guess.

So, yeah, the flippers are destroying the hobby.