Does this theory about used equipment seem accurate?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Steve Elias, Jan 2, 2002.

  1. Steve Elias

    Steve Elias Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello,

    Like so many of you have done, I'm trying to find the right "hub" for my home theater system. My budget and common(?) sense allow for a new receiver in the Denon AVR-3802 class(perhaps a bit higher), or used separates for a few hundred more which brings me to the theory:

    Buying used equipment such as the Rotel RB-985 MkII 5-Channel Amp and a used pre/pro is a relatively safe bet as the most of these components are probably being sold by obsessive compulsive hobbiests who are looking to upgrade to the latest and greatest model. Am I wrong to think that the used separates arena is a fairly safe option? Also, do amps such as the aforementioned Rotel degrade in quality and power over time?

    At the moment I'm leaning towards taking a chance on used equipment and a slightly stretched budget over the safer and cheaper Denon 3802 purchase. Any thoughts?

    One more question, if you don't mind: Is the Rotel RB-985 MkII 5-channel amp a good choice in a used amp at teh lower end of the separates price range? It's power specs are in line with what I think I want them for my home theater environment. FWIW, this will be an all-purpose system and I rate my usage as 70% music/30% HT.

    Finally, thank you all for the many posts and responses that I have spent hours reading. As a newbie, I greatly appreciate the time and effort many of put into your responses. As a veteran of other BB's connected to obsessive/compulsive type hobbies, I can safely say that this is the most civil board I've encountered.

    -Steve Elias
     
  2. JohanK

    JohanK Second Unit

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    I bought much of my equipment in the used market. Equipment either tends to fail right away or last a long time so components in the used market are a fairly safe bet if they are working correctly. In my experience, sound quality of amps don't noticeably degrade over time and the 985II is a nice amp (I have one).
     
  3. Zbigniew

    Zbigniew Stunt Coordinator

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    Steve.

    Amps - after early failure period, there is not much to break in next few years. Buying a used amp is a great idea - you save some $$ and help a friend to upgrade.

    Pre/pro - you need to balance desire for latest and greatest vs quality and known performance. For latest & greatest you end up paying much more - I went with used pre, since it had all features I needed.

    Have fun,

    _zjt
     
  4. Wookie Groomer

    Wookie Groomer Stunt Coordinator

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    A good amp should sound even better over time. The only drawback of buying used is the possibility of too much dust inside the unit. If the previous owner was a smoker, burned a lot of candles or had a lot of pets you can have dust/dirt build up inside the equipment over time. That would cause the amp to overheat and eventualy burn out. It was take several years though. If the inside of the amp is accessible with vents then a cheap compressed air canister could prolong the life for as long as you will ever be using it. It's also a good idea to blow out your receiver, DVD player and any other gear you have every couple months.
     
  5. Steve Elias

    Steve Elias Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you all for the replies. They give me the assurance I need to spend the extra money. The info about amps typically failing early or not at all and the tip on the dust factor are very helpful. Now all I have to do is find a used Rotel RSP-985, which I've heard and liked, or find some alternative pre/pro that I like as well (and hope that I can still buy the used Rotel RB985MkII amp). Thanks again.

    -Steve Elias
     
  6. Brian Schucher

    Brian Schucher Supporting Actor

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    The 985 shows up on Audiogon all the time. Usually for under 5 bills
     
  7. Bhagi Katbamna

    Bhagi Katbamna Supporting Actor

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    If you are worried about reliability or electronic parts wear and tear, consider a used Bryston which has a 20yr fully transferrable warranty based on the date of manufacture(so an original receipt is not necessary).
     
  8. Steve Elias

    Steve Elias Stunt Coordinator

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    Thank you Brian, Mark, and Bhagi, for the additional info all of which is news to me. Due to one of my other money sucking hobbies, I don't let the in-house temperature rise above 79 degrees F. Is that anywhere near optimum temperature conditions?

    -Steve Elias
     
  9. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    I have got quite a few things off ubid.com for less than used prices. And unlike used (they are new or refurbs),you get full warantee and no suprises.

    grant
     
  10. Bob Christensen

    Bob Christensen Stunt Coordinator

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    Grant: But with ubid, "upay" dearly for shipping. Be sure to factor that into your decision.
     
  11. Steve Elias

    Steve Elias Stunt Coordinator

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    I'll check out ubid and keep an eye on the "youpay" shipping costs. Also, I won't worry worry about the CAPS anymore. Thanks!

    -Steve Elias
     
  12. Grant B

    Grant B Producer

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    UBet the shipping can make it a bad deal. My Sony TAE 9000es amp retails for $1800. ES tends to be not heavily discounted....I still see it going for ~$1500.

    I got it off ubid for a little over $500 and with shipping it came to about $600 (should have gotten a discount because the fed ex lady couldn't budge it and I carried it in from the street!!)

    But I still have not seen another new one close to this price.

    My other one I bought used for $600 but generally I see them in the $900 range used.

    2 monsters for 2/3 the retail of 1 !!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    I like those figures
     
  13. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    My thoughts on "used":
    Pre/pros, try to make sure it has the latest software.
    Amps, the "safest" used purchase in my opinion. No moving parts, no software, etc.
    Speakers, I'd want the purchaser to guarantee the condition of the cones. Easy to damage.
    Ebay is nice, because if you get screwed, you have the "sword of negative feedback" with which to wield if you can't get the other party to "make right." [​IMG]
    IMO, "used" gear is an easy way to get good, quality gear, that I for one couldn't afford new. And with ebay, now you can "turn over" gear and test out various brands over time to more easily and cheaply end up with a "dream system."
    Or, you know, the "dream system of the moment" until upgreadeitis hits again... [​IMG]
     

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