What's happened to the used high end market recently?? Sales are tough....:0(

The heading says it all!! What do you guys think is the reason that the sales in the used high end market have gone soft??
Prices too high? Economy too slow?? Stock market too volatile?? Something else??


I would concede your points that some dealers use Audiogon today as a fully inflated classifieds listing rather than the clearinghouse for gear we all once experienced here. Much like the starting price in an auto negotiation rather than a congenial swap meet style pricing seen at audio clubs back in the day.

Sometimes I wish I wasn't so analytical. I deal with data.  My entire career has been trying to separate real facts from human perceptions in order to accurately predict consumer behavior. When I hear a group of 60 year olds discussing the gradual demise of Howard Johnsons, Steak & Ale and today the decline of Applebees or TGI Fridays I just chuckle. I close my eyes and think of an industry that once sold convenience and time rather than food and nourishment like the consumer base believed at the time.  Home meal replacement was a long trend that has reversed radically in that space.  The same goes for the IT industry.  Anyone remember Compaq, Sperry, DEC? Every kid in a Starbucks carries more computing power in their smartphone than utilized to put a man on the moon. In electronics...the list goes forever, Fisher, Marantz, Bozak, McIntosh, Klipsch and GE all were dominant players is audio making well though of products.....only McIntosh and Klipsch have remained relevant and they have done so quite differently.

So, please forgive me when I hear that an industry is dying or suffering that I immediately go into analysis mode. Is the industry dying, changing or being displaced. The answer is absolutely, all three apply and apply every day to every industry.  The energy business isn't dying because out of work coal miners say it is, manufacturing isn't dying because someone in one part of the world can manufacture steel more efficiently.  Commerce always dictates change, it always has and always will. Technological change has been happening since the the beginning of time, its happening right now.

Does music exist to serve audio equipment or is audio equipment there to serve the music?
See those prices ! You can buy a Mecedes Bens or a Audi 5 down payment on a house get back your money down the road
I’m not high end audio type, but I do enjoy the two channel experience, spin vinyl and fuss over my old equipment. So what I find here at Audiogon is thoughtful conversation about options and a better quality marketplace than eBay. It’s a crapshoot on eBay but the quality control in this community helps a buyer know the product is going to perform once purchased. This site has a great seller review system and that means a lot when moving away from bricks and mortar sellers. 

That said, I am sitting on several old components and not getting them sold—so my interest in this thread. A Belles amp used to be worth something and now it seems the buyer interest is low. 
Thanks to trickle-down economics, combined with the idea that corporations are in business purely to make as much money as possible, we now have a highly stratified society with wealth extremely concentrated at the top.  A million dollar system is not a problem for some people, while a thousand dollars is impossible for virtually everyone else.  Manufacturers are only going to be able to survive either by appealing to one or the other - there is no middle left to speak of.
And that million dollar system is really only there as a big middle finger to impress the less wealthy.  There must be virtually zero correlation between wealth and audiophilia!  No wonder the snake oil contingent seem to be doing so well.
Part of the problem is that today "if it doesn't travel, I ain't interested".

 I also have found it interesting that so many trends have been "re-discovered". Vinyl, integrated amps, magnetic tape; what's old is new again. This will no doubt happen with CD's also. Buy 'em while they're cheap!