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Help Price my Receiver for Sale (1 Viewer)

RobCar

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I've upgraded, and now I'm wondering what to do with my old receiver, a Yamaha rx-v496. Was thinking about keeping it to build a second system, maybe in the bedroom, but I'm thinking one system's enough.

So my question is, what do you think I can get for it? Retailed for $399 a year and a half ago when I got it. I paid more like $325.

It's 70w x 5, DTS, DD, etc. Here's a review:
http://www.hometheatermag.com/showarchives.cgi?58:1

What do you think's fair? Not a scratch on it. Got the box and the paperwork etc.

Thanks --
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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As a veteran used gear buyer (most if my system I bought used) my general rule-of-thumb is no more that 50% of original street price (not list). There are exceptions, like perhaps for used products that are still current production.

However, not unlike computers, receivers are a high-depreciation product these days because the technology is changing so fast - e.g., component video, DPL II, etc. So you’ll be very lucky to get half what you paid for it.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

RobCar

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Thanks Wayne. That's kinda what I was expecting to hear. Not too surprising given how quickly the new model years come out.

So you've had good experiences buying used? Seems like you can save a ton that way, but how do you know how the stuff has been treated?
 

RobWil

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I agree with Wayne. Used furniture, computers, receivers. In another thread here notice where you can get a refurb Kenwood 6070 for $269 shipped. That's 100wpc x 6, THX select with lots of features. Makes it hard to believe you could even get $150 for yours, no offense intended. It's almost just better to keep it or give it to a close relative. Or store it for awile. You never know when you might wish you'd kept it.
 

kevitra

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I just sold my Denon 3802 on Ebay for $100 less than I paid for it at an authorized dealer. It was 8 months old. People on Ebay have a tendency to overpay...

I realize that isn't the norm, but it can happen.

The best way to see what you can get is to goto Ebay and do a search for completed auctions on your receiver. You can get an idea of how much you can get.
 

RobCar

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Oh, definitely no offense taken. I figure these things are probably most like computers in terms of how well they hold their value. I'm just trying to get an idea of what to ask so I don't waste anyone's time asking too much. But your suggestion to give it to a close relative is sounding like a good one. Thx --
 

RobWil

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People on Ebay have a tendency to overpay...
I agree...I think they assume everything up for bid is a good deal. Some of the stuff you can find for the same exact price if you just go to the sellers website. Just call it 'vintage'. :D
 

RobWil

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I'm in the same boat with two 'excess' receivers. I know I could only get a coupla hundred total so I'm thinking about giving one to my brother and one to my daughter. Plus it's a hassle selling stuff. But then again, a coupla hundred WOULD make a nice little dent in my latest purchases....hmmmm! :b
 

Brett DiMichele

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Anyone that pays those prices on ebay is a fool though. You
can not use those auctions as an example.

Here are examples of my Ebay experiances (I shop around..)

My Onkyo Receiver sold for $1050.00 I bought it new on ebay
for $750.00

I just won the auction on a 2 week old, boxed, mind Parasound
Halo P3 Preamp ($800.00 new) I paid $550.00

Ya just have to shop around :)
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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So you've had good experiences buying used? Seems like you can save a ton that way, but how do you know how the stuff has been treated?
As far as condition, you can tell a lot just by the appearance of it. If an item is all smudged, scratched and scuffed up, you can reasonably assume it has not been cared for. A dent somewhere in the chassis is a sure sign that it has been dropped. Of course, it may be operating perfectly, but do you really want some beat-up-looking piece of gear in your system?

If you get to inspect an item first-hand, you should make sure all features and functions are operational. You will probably need to study the owner's manual to do this. Once I sent off for a manual for a high-end cassette deck I found in a pawnshop, because I couldn’t figure out how all the features worked. The $5 investment paid off; a week or so later I walked out with a $500 three-head deck, fully functioning and in mint condition, for a mere $150.

Operational inspection of all transport functions is a must for anything with moving parts, like a DVD player, cassette deck or VCR. So far I’ve only had one incident the where an item that I verified was operating correctly before I bought it failed a short time later. But, I had purchased it so cheap it wasn’t a great loss. That’s one of the beauties of buying used. Overall it’s a pretty safe gamble, especially if you’re careful and do your homework. Even if you manage to occasionally make a goof and have to try a second time, you’re still well ahead of where you would be if you bought everything new. In other words, the law of averages usually works in your favor.

Beyond verifying the condition and operation, the most important thing is to know what an item is worth. I make it a point to buy a product directory every year (like the one Sound and Vision puts out) to have as a reference for future purchases. That way if you see someone asking $800 for a five-year-old amplifier that listed for $1200, you know to keep walking (shouldn't be more than $5-600).

It’s a little trickier when you can’t inspect something first-hand, like when buying on eBay.

It helps to know a few basics about the nature of home electronics. Namely, that static components like receivers, amplifiers etc. are infinitely more durable and reliable than components with moving parts, like CD and DVD players, VCRs etc. Therefore the latter will always be more of a gamble than the former.

Video displays are also more of a gamble when you can’t see them in operation personally. It would be advisable to educate yourself on potential problems you should to look for when they have some years on them.

So – knowing what’s safe to buy on-line and what’s not, the first thing I look at on eBay is the seller’s description. If someone is selling something in excellent or mint condition, you can bet they will make a point to mention it. And if it isn’t in excellent or mint condition, you can bet they’ll make a point to omit that little detail. So, if it isn’t described as mint or excellent, assume it isn’t. I’ve had people tell me an item was mint when I e-mailed the question, but then on delivery it wasn’t even close. Remember, if you have to make a claim against someone, you have a much better case if their item is, on delivery, not as represented at the auction site. You can't make a case against them from e-mails, because they can be manipulated after-the-fact.

The next thing I look for is someone who appears, from their description of the item, to be honest and forthcoming about the appearance or condition of it. For instance the abovementioned Yamaha RX-496 from this auction. He says it’s mint: “Dual Channel power amplifier in MINT CONDITION!“ And you can see from the picture that indeed it appears as such.

However, I’d feel more comfortable if he had made additional statements, such as “This receiver was used only occasionally for 6 months in our bedroom system and was never pushed very hard. For all practical purposes it’s in like-new, mint condition, but there is a small scratch on the top. You’d never notice it unless you were looking for it, but it is there nevertheless.”

I think you get the picture. A seller just appears more honest it he gives a lot of detail, both pro and con.

The next thing I look at is their feedback. I immediately dismiss anyone with more than 5% negative feedback. If you want to take risk on someone with questionable feedback, plan on substantially reducing what you otherwise would have been prepared to bid.

Also, look at their total number of transactions. I’ll take a chance on someone with limited transactions if the item is relatively cheap, but for a high-dollar purchase I want them to have both excellent feed back and a substantial number of transactions as a seller.

But even if their feedback is perfect, it’s a good idea to study the comments. For instance, if you’re buying something as heavy and substantial as a receiver from an individual, and find that all their positive feedback is from purchases only, that can be a problem. This is an important point. For instance, their performance may not be so good when they are the seller; it takes a lot more effort to be a seller than it does to be a buyer. And, if they have no selling experience on eBay, they may very well not know how to properly package something as heavy as a receiver for safe shipment.

For instance, a recent purchase of mine from a frequent buyer with perfect feedback arrived with ample padding for the top and bottom of the component, but precious little for the sides. As if he expected it would never get tossed end-over-end! Needless to say, all it takes is careless packaging for your “little-used, mint” purchase to end up arriving as “scratch and dent” merchandise.

Refurbished goods are another money-saving option, again as long as you are careful. Many of these never had a serious problem to begin with, but were returned by customers for perhaps cosmetic flaws, or maybe they thought it didn’t work right when the real problem was that they just didn’t know how to use it. Others may have had only a simple problem, like an LED that didn’t work.

A refurbished component should have been given a thorough evaluation and clean bill of health by a factory technician, and it should carry a full manufacturer’s warranty – i.e., the same warranty as a brand new product.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

kevitra

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Wayne - you should write the Buyer's FAQ for ebay. :)

One fun thing about Ebay's search is how 'bad' it is at picking up little differences in the way you enter your search criteria.

Wayne searched for "YAMAHA RX 496" (I'm guesing). It brought back that one auction with no bids.

I searched for "YAMAHA RX496" (no space) and got 1 that sold. Unfortunatley (for you), it sold for $72.
Yamaha that sold

Whenever I sell something, I always make the title so search will pick up the item. You have to think of every possible way someone can search for your item, and then get it to fit inside of 80 characters. I write software like this for a living, so it comes a bit easier to me than most (it isn't hard..most people just don't know to do it).

A good title for that receiver would be "Yamaha RX 496 RX496 surround sound receiver". Easy and obvious, but most people don't know to do it.

Good luck. For $72 you might consider just keeping it for a 2nd system.

On a side note: almost all of my gear is also used. I typically buy from Audiogon, but will occasionally buy from Ebay. After owning 5 used Rotel amps (980, 956, 985, 990, and now the 1070) and 2 preamps (980 and 970), I'm buying my first new one (RSX-1055). You save a lot of money buying used, but for once I'm breaking down to get a new model. Paired up with the RB-1070 I bought used for less than 1/2 of retail, it will be a great system.
In the case of the RSX-1055 - they are going used for around $1000-1100. I am getting it new for $1170 + tax (got 10% off), so to me it is worth buying new for the 5 year warranty and dealer support.
 

Scott Merryfield

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My rule of thumb regarding selling old HT equipment is that if I cannot get at least $200 for the item, I will either keep it or give it to a relative/friend. I have an old Toshiba SD-6200 progressive scan DVD player sitting in a box in my basement right now -- it's a backup for my current Panny RP-91, and will probably go to my parents if I ever find a decent upgrade for the RP-91. I could probably get no more than $100 for the Toshiba, so it's worth more to me as a spare (I already have an older Sony player in our bedroom).
 

RobCar

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Nov 27, 2002
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Wow, great info -- thanks a ton!

One small point, though -- the RX-496 you guys refer to is a 2-channel stereo receiver. The RX-V496 is the 5.1 channel DTS, DD home theater counterpart, which means it might attract a little more interest in the auctions. But probably not enough to put it too far over $100.
 

RobCar

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Nov 27, 2002
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Wayne, after rereading your post, I've decided to save it for future reference. Thanks again!

I know what you mean about examining the photos. I've seen auctions for audio equipment where the seller hasn't even bothered to clean the dust off a unit. Not too encouraging.
 

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