Selling old vinyl records: Understand what the market is looking for, the pros and cons and how to access music lovers and collectors and make money too.
In recent years there has been an increase in the sales of old vinyl records, as more and more people turned their attention to a more traditional way to listen to music. Some old music collections have turned from dust piles and old junk into a fortune mine, making their owners happy and rich.
But there is a clear difference between true valuable collections and common, old disks. Not every disk is a goldmine and neither is it going to see well.
What are vinyl records?
An analog way to record and keep music, a vinyl record or vinyl disk is a big, flat disk on which a modulated spiral groove is inscribed. It does not play on its own, as it requires a phonograph. Also known as a turntable or pick-up, this device was one of the main ways to listen to music during the 20th century. Basically speaking, it can be considered the grandfather of tape recorders and CDs.
Why and how did the vinyl records return to the popularity chart, is still unknown. Some claim that the sounds the vinyl disk has, the way in which it was made are more detailed and more exact than those from our actual CD. They claim the sound is clearer on vinyl disks than any other current media, as digital does not always mean better in regards to quality.
Or maybe is just the nostalgic feeling one has when he or she listens to his or her parents or grandparents old music records. And maybe that is the only way to listen to certain melodies and songs, some of which had never had the opportunity to be translated into today’s new listening methods.
While there are several advantages to owning a vinyl collection or disks, there are, on the other side, disadvantages.
- Better sound quality
It highly depends on the listener’s taste. Both CDs and disks can, if done right, a great sound quality to them. But what everyone talks about when they refer to the better sound of vinyl is the way in which human voice recorded on it seems to bring a warmer note to the ear. On CD’s the artist’s voice sounds a bit colder and more mechanic.
- Nostalgic feelings
When a turntable is concerned, it evokes a nostalgic feeling in the user or listener. It has that specific air of old, setting the mood and atmosphere like no CD can ever hope to do.
- Better dynamics
There are some disks which have better dynamics recorded on them, better sound clarity. When you wish to translate a vinyl disk into a CD, the analog way in which music is stored on the record must be reformed into another code.
And certain, small, peculiar details tend to be lost in the process. Sure, the computer tries its best to duplicate the sound or add and improvise the parts that do not translate, but to the human ear, the change in quality sound is perceptible.
- Better attention span
When listening to a CD you do not always pay 100% attention to the music you hear. You might listen to the CD while you do your daily chores, at work, at home during the cleaning process or in any other situation. But you are not entirely drawn to it.
With vinyl records, on the other hand, the story changes. Maybe it is because it is fascinating to watch how the machine flips the disk over, or maybe it is just that peculiar feeling it gives you that makes you stop what you are doing just to listen to it. Either way, it grabs your attention, demanding you actually mind what you are listening to.
- Care and maintenance
To maintain in great shape a vinyl record requires dedication. All disks must be cleaned from time to time, must be stored accordingly for them not to deteriorate and must be taken care of properly. Moreover, not only the disks need special attention, but the pickup also needs to be looked after. When you decide to use or a quite a turning table, be sure to learn how to keep it in great shape.
- Prone to damage
Vinyl disks are easily damaged. And when the disk is damaged, so it the sounds and music recorded on it. So be sure to keep it safe!
- Surface noise and errors
Some may be avoided by correctly cleaning and keeping the disks. However, there are certain errors that cannot be avoided. When the disk turns over there is a high chance of it misaligning itself with the turntable, resulting in sound errors.
Where CDs have become way cheaper than they were when their first appeared, and are, therefore, quite affordable nowadays; with vinyl records the situation is reversed. Nowadays they are quite expensive. And their prices only grow exponentially to their value and rarity.
Selling old vinyl records
Do you have some old records you do not wish to keep anymore? Or perhaps you just inherited an old collection and you want to turn it into profit. There are, however, certain things you have to keep in mind when you wish to make a fortune.
- Record stores
Be aware that not all disks sell well, or at all. Only those of true quality and value are going to be seen as being worthy of a deal. Therefore, it is better to inform yourself about the market before you wish to try and sell something.
Go to a professional record store and ask there if they can evaluate your collection. And if you are not entirely sure why they offer you the price they offer, ask for more details about it.
With the new way of shopping nowadays, online, more and more transactions are made on the digital market. But beware of the traps this apparently innocent and easy to use way of selling-and-buying market has to offer.
Sites like: eBay, Amazon, Discogs, Craigslist, and many similar ones offer you a great way to exchange your collection for money. But you have to inform yourself about them, have to do some research on their conditions, on what pros and cons they offer and decide for yourself which one you want to use.
Depending on your style, on what your tastes are and how you see music, you may favor old over new or vice versa. Make sure you do not rush into action when selling is concerned. Take your time, become acquainted with the market and decide for yourself what method you wish to use for transactions.