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Since SGB got me started on Amazon's "used & new" CDs, I think I'll ask everyone else where to find the cheapest / best selection of CDs on the Internet. I'm guessing the cheapest will be used, thus the title Used CDs.

 

I noticed eBay has come deals, but onl before calculating shipping cost. An $8 CD is OK, but not after $7 shipping!

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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Chris,

 

There are more reasons than the obvious lower prices ON CURRENTLY AVAILABLE CDs, but as some collectors may soon learn, recordings that go OOP (out of print) could cost many times more than they would have paid when the item was current. The basic business model for the music industry appears to be that more obscure or less popular items will stay in print only so long as there is stock in their warehouses, and in some cases, a title may be declared OOP even before this if the sales numbers just aren't sufficient to merit the warehouse space. When specially licensed items are considered (such as Mobile Fidelity or DCC reissues targeted at audiophiles), it is important to remember that these recordings have a time limitation on the license, and, in most cases, a maximum number of recordings that can be sold. These limitations will certainly add to the value of a particular CD. For example, all three of the Nat "King" Cole recordings that DCC released on both LP and CD generally sell at ebay auction for several hundred dollars. There could be numerous other examples — I have paid as much as $300 for a single rarity, but, for the intent of this thread, the help I hope to provide others has to begin with why buy used instead of a newer reissue.

 

The first is sound quality. You may have noticed that when you replace an older CD with a newly remastered, reissued one, that the sound level is often much higher. This is due in large part to the level of compression that has been applied to the recording. I believe Chris has supplied a link to a site that demonstrates this. In fact, compression is, though, only one of the engineering aspects that effect sound quality. When CDs are reissued, a different engineer may apply such things as noise suppression or some sort of equalization that may actually work to the detriment of the sound. N.B. there have been noted incidents of the audiophile specialty labels intentionally using EQ to differentiate their products from what is in normal channels. Essentially, earlier releases are preferable to remastered reissues because there was so much demand to get CD product into the stores that the majority were what are called flat transfers. Thus, you have more of a chance at getting a CD that sounds more like the master tape; and this despite the technological advances of the digital recording venue.

 

For the hard to find items, ones that you just can't find in the usual places, a Google search will often help you (but not always). Some times you will find that the only places that have an item you're searching for are in faraway places and at very high prices. There is one seller in Europe you might find via Google that lists a number of very hard to find MoFis etc., and his average price for them is 199 Euros. There are also a few music subscription sites (such as GEMM) that will list the wares of thousands of sellers around the world. Here, too, you will find that the prices are not always what you want to pay. That leaves us with ebay and Amazon as the two major sources of used recordings. Many used music sellers use one or the other (or both) to advertise their inventories, but over the past several years I have noticed that fewer are listing the quality stuff on ebay, and, instead, putting it on Amazon. The reasons for this are obvious: unlike ebay where a seller must pay to list his items in a "store" OR place the item up for auction, Amazon allows its sellers to list its items free of charge for up to 60 days. So, for them, there is no up-front expense and they can put a fair value on it. (I once put a VERY rare CD up on Amazon for the outrageous asking price of $400, thinking nobody would buy it, but it sold within moments after it was listed. I confess I felt bad about taking the buyer's money, especially in consideration of the fact that a few months later the recording was finally reissued.)

 

It is important to know that if you buy a used CD from an Amazon seller that if you are looking for something in particular — a Larry Walsh mastered Sinatra CD, for example, or a copy of Getz-Gilberto that has Astrid's voice properly placed in the left channel in "Ipanema" — that you ASK before you buy. Most times you will get an answer from your seller. I will usually ask someone to verify the UPC number of the item for sale, but in some cases the catalog number will do.

 

If you are fortunate enough to live in a city with lots of used record stores and you are the adventurous sort, then there's no telling what you may find. Unfortunately, a lot of these stores have subscribed to a computerized inventory system that will give them the heads up when someone brings in a collectible. These will usually end up on ebay instead of being put in the bins. A local used store once had a pair of the Traveling Wilburys CDs on display, each with a $50 price tag. Today, though, those same CDs would bring only $6.99.

 

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Thanks for all the solid information SGB. I do have an awesome used retailer in Minneapolis called Cheapo. They have one giant floor of digital and one giant basement of analog music. My only problem is digging through everything! What a rough problem to have! I wish they had an online inventory, but then I would miss out on the smell of vinyl and those amazing CD finds when you're not expecting it.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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...that I don't like the sound of most CD's?

 

We have a Cheapo's here in Austin. I was under the impression that they were a local business. .....

 

Never been there. Gonna download all my music from now on...... right.....

 

markr

"I've got a googlephonic stereo with a moon rock stylus. Sounds like SH*T! - steve martin

 

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I just got back from Cheapo in fact. The place certainly has the look and feel of a local business because of the no frills appearance etc...

 

Some of them are better than others. We have several in Minneapolis and the one in Uptown is by far the best. I love the fact they are open 9am - Midnight 365 days a year. You never know when you'll need to run out and pick up an album.

 

 

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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  • 2 weeks later...

Multi CD box sets

Led Zeppelin - 4 Disks Box Set, Book

Rod Stewart - Storyteller, 4 Disks, Box Set, Book

Soul Train - Hall Of Fame, 3 Disks, Box Felt Set, Book

Tommy Bolin - Ultimate, 2 Box Set, Book

 

Multi CD sets

Allman Brothers - Dreams, 4 Disks

Beastie Boys - Anthology, 2 Disks

Bee Gees - Greatest, 2 Disks

Best Of The 70’s - Original Artists, 3 Disks

Doors - Best Of, 2 Disks

Elton John - Goodbye Yellow Brick Road Disk 2, #1 Missing

Elton John - Here And There, 2 Disks

Elton John - To Be Continued, 4 Disks

Eric Clapton - Crossroads, 4 Disks

George Harrison - Live In Japan, 2 Disks

Humble Pie - Hot And Nasty, 2 Disks, CD Size Book

Jethro Tull - 36 Greatest Hits, 3 Disks

Marvin Gaye - The Best Of, 2 Disks

Neil Young Crazy Horse - Weld, 2 Disks

Rock Archives - Volume 1 And 2, 2 Disks

Rush - Chronicles, 2 Disks

Smashing Pumpkins - Mellon Collie, 2 Disks

Talking Heads - Sand In The Vaseline, 2 Disks

The Band - The Last Waltz, 2 Disks

Todd Rundgren - Something Anything, 2 Disks

Traffic - Smiling Phases, 2 Disks

War - Anthology, 2 Disks CD Size Book

Willie Nelson - 6 Top Ten Hits, 2 Disks

Woodstock - 2 Disks

Woodstock 94, 2 Disks

 

Regular CD’s

38 Special - Bone Against Steel

38 Special - Flashback

38 Special Strength In Numbers

AC/DC - Back In Black

Aerosmith - Get A Grip

Alan Parsons - Project The Best Of Volume 2

Alarm - Eye Of A Hurricane

Aldo Nova - A Portrait Of An

Allman Bros - Where It All Begins

Aretha Franklin - Chain Of Fools

Asia

Atlantic Rhythm And Blues - Volume 7

B-52’s - Good Stuff

B-52s - Cosmic Thing

Babies - Anthology

Bad Company - Here Comes Trouble

Badfinger

Barry White - Hits

Basia - London Warsaw NY

Basia - Time And Tide

Beatles - Free As A Bird

Beck - Mellow Gold

Beck - Odelay

Ben Harper - Will To Live

Better Than Ezra - Deluxe

Big Country - Peace In Wartime

Billboard Top Hits 70’s

Billy Idol - Rebel Yell

Billy Idol - Vital Idol

Billy Squire - Don’t Say No

Black Crowes - Amorica

Black Crowes - Shake Your Money Maker

Black Crowes - Southern Harmony

Blind Melon

Blondie - Best Of

Blue Oyster Cult - On Flame With Rock And Roll

Blues Traveler

Blues Traveler - Save His Soul

Bob Dylan - Oh Mercy

Bob Marley - Legend

Bob Seger - Beautiful Looser

Bob Seger - Stranger In Town

Bon Jovi - Slippery When Wet

Bread - Anthology

Brian Ferry - Taxi

Bruce Springsteen - Human Touch

Bruce Springsteen - Tunnel Of Love

Bryan Adams - Cuts Like A Knife

Bryan Adams - Into The Fire

Bryan Adams - So Far So Good

Bryan Adams - Waking Up The Neighbors

BTO - Greatest Hits

Byrds - Super Hits

Call - Red Moon

Candlebox - Happy Pills

Candlebox - Lucy

Cars - Candy-O

Cat Stevens - Classics

Chicago - If You Leave Me Now

Chris Issak - Forever Blue

Chris Rea - New Light Through Old Windows

Chris Rea - Road To Hell

Classic Rock Volume 1

Classic Soul

Concrete Blond - Mexican Moon

Crosby Still Nash - CSN

Crosby Still Nash Young - So Far

Crosby Still Nash Young - American Dream

Cure - Disintegration

Cure - Mixed Up

Cutting Edge - Best Of Modern Rock Hits Volume 2

Damn Yankees

Damn Yankees - Don’t Tread

David Bowie - Changesbowie

David Lee Roth - A Little Ain’t Enough

David Lee Roth - Skyscraper

Deep Purple - Knocking At Your Backdoor

Dig - Radioactive

Dire Straits - On Every Street

Dishwalla - Pet Your Friends

Don Henley - End Of The Innocence

Doobies - Best Of The Doobies

Doobies - Takin It To The Streets

Doors - Morrison Hotel

Eagles - The Long Run

Edwin Collins - Gorgeous George

Eighties GH - Living In Oblivion

Elton John - Don’t Shoot Me

Elton John - Duets

Elton John - Greatest Hits

Elton John - Greatest Hits Vol 2

Elton John - Reg Strikes Back

Elton John - The One

Elvis Costello - Armed Forces

Elvis Costello - The Very Best Of

Eric Burdon Animals - Best Of

Eric Clapton - Slowhand

Extreme II - Pornograffitti

Firefall - Greatest Hits

Fixx - Calm Animals

Fixx - Ink

Fleetwood Mac - Behind The Mask

Fleetwood Mac - Tango In The Night

Foreigner

Foreigner - Best And Beyond

Frampton - Comes Alive #2

Frozen Ghost

Fury - In The Slaughterhouse

Garbage - Beautiful

Gene Loves Jezebel - Discover

Gene Loves Jezebel - From The Mouths Of Babes

Gene Loves Jezebel - Kiss Of Life

George Thorogood - Baddest

Gin Blossoms - New Miserable Experience

Gods Child - Everybody

Gold And Platinum Vol. 5

Grand Funk - E Pluribus Funk

Grand Funk - Hits

Grand Funk Railroad - Collectors Series

Grand Funk Railroad - Pair

Grateful Dead - Skeletons From The Closet

Great White - Best Of

Greatest Hits 80’s Volume 1 Original Artists Original Hits

Greatest Hits Of The 80’s Power Ballads Volume 5

Grin - Seven Flavors

Hall And Oats - H20

Harry Connick, Jr. - Blue Light

Havana - Black Indian Warrior

Heart - Hits

Herb Albert And TB - Hits

Hooters - Nervous Night

Inxs - Full Moon Dirty Hearts

Inxs - Listen Like Thieves

Inxs - Welcome The Wherever You Are

Inxs - X

Iron Butterfly In A Gadda Da Vida

Izzy Stradlin And The Ju Ju Hounds

James Taylor - Greatest Hits

Jan Hammer - Escape From Television

Jane’s Addiction - Ritual De Lo Habitual

Janis Joplin - Pearl

Jean Loves Jezebel - In The Afterglow

Jefferson Starship - Gold

Jimi Hendrix - Kiss The Sky

Jimi Hendrix - Radio One

Jimi Hendrix - Tribute Stone Free

Jimmy Barnes - Freight Train Heart

Jimmy Buffet - Greatest Hits

Jimmy Buffett - Changes In Lattitudes

Joe Cocker - One Night Of Sin

Joe Jackson - Hits

John Cougar - American Fool

John Cougar Mellancamp - Scarecrow

John Cougar Mellancamp - Uh-Huh

John Lennon - Collection

John Lennon - Imagine

John Lennon - Shaved Fish

John Mellancamp - Big Daddy

John Mellancamp - Dance Naked

John Mellancamp - Human Wheels

John Mellancamp - Whenever We Wanted

John Mellencamp

John Mellencamp - Mr. Happy Go Lucky

Jude Cole - A View From Third Street

Julian Lennon - Help Yourself

Kansas - Point Of No Return

KC Sunshine Band - Best Of

Kenny Loggins - Leap Of Faith

Kid Rock - Star Profile

Kinks - All The Hits And More

Kinks - Best Of 77 -86

Kinks - Come Dancing

Kiss - Destroyer

Kiss - Dressed To Kill

Kiss - Hotter Than Hell

Kiss - My Ass

Kiss - You Wanted The Best

Kiss Alive - Three

Led Zeppelin - In Through The Out Door

Lemmon Heads - It’s A Shame About Ray

Lenny Kravitz - Circus

Lenny Kravitz - Let Love Rule

Lenny Kravitz - 5

Lenny Kravitz - Are You Gonna Go My Way

Listen Up - Mixed Artists

Loverboy - Keep It Up

Lyle Lovett - Pontiac

Lynyrd Skynyrd - #3

Madonna - Immaculate Collection

Mamas Pappas - 16 Greatest Hits

Masters Of Metal Wreaking Havoc Volume 1

Mathew Sweet - Altered Beast

Melissa Etheridge - Brave And Crazy

Melissa Etheridge - Yes I Am

Michael Bolton

Michael Bolton - The Hunger

Mickey Hart - Planet Drum

Midnight Oil - Blue Sky Mining

Montgomery Gentry - You Do Your Thing

Motley Crue - Decade Of Decadence

Mozart - Final Symphonies

Nazareth - Classics

Neil Young - Freedom

Neil Young - Harvest

Neil Young - Mirror Mall

Neil Young - Unplugged

Nirvana - In Utero

Nirvana - Nevermind

Nirvana - Unplugged In New York

Number One Hits From 25 Years Vol. 2

Oasis - Definitely Maybe

One-Hit Wonders

Ozzie Osborne - No More Tears

Pat Benatar - Best Shots

Pat Benatar - Gravity’s Rainbow

Pat Benatar - Precious Time

Patty Smith - Dream Of Life

Pearl Jam - Vitology

Pearl Jam - Yield

Pearl Jam No Code

Peter Frampton

Peter Frampton - Classics

Peter Frampton – Comes Alive 2

Peter Frampton - Premonition

Peter Murphy - Cascade

Peter Murphy - Deep

Peter, Paul And Mary - Best Of

Pink Floyd Delicate Sound Of Thunder (Disk 2)

Planet P - Project

Pretty And Twisted

Radio Hits 1975

Radiohead - Pablo Honey

Ratt - Ratt And Roll

REO - High Infidelity

Rick Springfield - Best Of

Robert Plant - Fate Of Nations

Rodger McGuinn - Back From Rio

Rolling Stones - Voodoo Lounge

Rush - Counterparts

Rusted Root - When I Woke

Sade - Best Of

Sammy Hagar - Unboxed

Santana - Supernatural

Sean Lennon - Into The Sun

Seventies Radio Hits Vol. 2

Simon Garfunkel - Greatest Hits

Simple Minds - Glittering Prize

Sinead O’Connor - I Don’t Want What I Haven’t Got

Sly Stone - Greatest Hits

Sonny & Cher - Best Of

Sound Garden - Super Unknown

Spin Doctors - Turn It Upside Down

Split Enz - History Never Repeats

Sponge - Rotting Piñata

Steve Miller - Best Of

Steve Miller - Born 2 B Blue

Steve Winwood - Chronicles

Steveie Nicks - Best Of Time Space

Sting - Nothing Like The Sun

Sting - Soul Cages

Sting - Ten Summoner’s Tales

Stray Cats Rock This Town

Styx - Lady

Supertramp - Breakfast In America

Talking Heads - Stop Making Sense

Tears For Fears - Seeds Of Love

Tears For Fears - Elemental

Tears For Fears - Saturnine Martial And Lunatic

Temple Of The Dog

The Band - The Last Waltz

The Church - Gold Afternoon Fix

The Cure - Staring At The Sea Hits

The Outfield - Diamond Days

The Outlaws - Extended Versions

Thin Lizzy - Best Of Dedication

Three Dog Night - Best Of

Timbuk3 - Eden Alley

Tin Machine

Todd Rundgren - No World Order

Tom Cochrane - Mad Mad World

Tom Jones - Golden Hits

Tom Petty - Damn The Torpedos

Tom Petty - Full Moon Fever

Tom Petty - Hits

Tom Petty - Southern Accents

Tom Petty - Wildflowers

Tommy Bolin - Teaser

Tommy James And The Shondells - Anthology

Trace Adkins - Dreaming Outloud

Twenty Five Years Of Soul 1970

U2 - The Unforgettable Fire

Uriah Heep - Live Europe 79

Us3 - Hand On The Torch

Van Halen - Diver Down

Van Halen - II

Vintage Music Collectors Series Volume 19 And 20 (On One Cd)

Wallflowers - Bringing Down The House

Wang Chung - Points On The Curve

Whitesnake - Greatest Hits

Yes - Highlights

Yes - Talk

Yes - Union

Ziggy Marley - Conscious Party

ZZ Top - Greatest Hits

ZZ Top – Recycler

 

Soundtracks

Jerry Maguire Soundtrack

Dead Presidents Music Soundtrack

Commitments Soundtrack

Any Given Sunday Soundtrack

The Crow Soundtrack

Forrest Gump Soundtrack, 2 Disks

Reality Bites Soundtrack

 

Also, a few compilations, mostly 70s and 80s, like the CD’s they sell on TV and a few other loose CDs

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

About 1/4 have sold. I'm now splitting them up so price is 10 CDs for $17.50, other than the first box and multi cd sets. If any interest I can update what's left, which is still a lot and put in box set prices. You pay shipping which is pretty low, around $3 for 10 CDs. All but 3 have original artwork and jewel case. (I think the cases are at least.) Everything plays fine for me. Some of the jewel cases have broken hinges or stress cracks from being stacked. I looked at 100 of them up close and personal and saw no severe damage on the disks.

 

George

 

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Hi Chris, SGB, All,

 

I picked up on the statement in this post referring to changed sound quality in reissued CDs. Of course, for many this is the reason for purchase in the first place, but I think we all have a right to expect this to be an improvement in every case. That it often is not - that the reissue often sounds worse than the original - has soured this for me, and I am sure many others. The main issue seems to be changing notions of what 'remastering' means. Back in the good old pre-digital days it used to be the case that remastering had a specific meaning: going back to an early generation tape and cutting a new master of it (e.g., for stamping purposes or re-release). As SGB says, these days re-mastered seems to be little more than a marketing ploy to get people to re-buy music they already own on CD, a ploy doubtless inspired by the original wheeze of getting people to buy muisc on CD they already owned on vinyl (in both cases, the replacement sounding worse). Is there evidence for this claim? I can offer two examples:

 

i) 'Soul mining' by The The on CD, a fine sounding album that I lost the original of and replaced with the '24 Bit Remaster' version. Clearly, no more bits get through to the down-sampled CD than the original 16 bit issue, but there is the suggestion that some effort has been put into the re-issue as regards sound quality. Nothing could be further from the truth - even from memory, the remaster sounded much worse than the original: glassy, harsh, compressed; in effect, everything that was bad from the early days of CD that re-mastering with new technology ought to rectify. It took me a few months to find the original at a cheap price on Ebay, but when I did it was exactly as I thought - the original sounded far, far better. Was an earlier (mastertape?) source used for the 24 bit re-issue and just stuffed-up by a cack-handed engineer, or was the original CD master (probably DAT) simply re-equalised, noise-filtered and dynamic-range 'enhanced' etc., resulting in the dreadful sound of the re-issue? Who knows, but I suspect it was the latter.

 

ii) 'Quit Dreaming and get on the Beam' by Bill Nelson. This one ought to have been cut and dried: contractual issues had caused the original mastertapes to be unavailable for years and the original CD release was as rare as hen's teeth, and priced accordingly. When the issues were resolved and the master handed over, the resulting CD re-issue, supposedly taken from this tape, sounded worse than the original (which itself suffered badly in comparison to the vinyl). I suspect the same events took place.

 

Every CD I have heard where remastering is the USP, but no reference to an improved source is mentioned, sounds worse, e.g., The Cure, Peter Gabriel, Japan, Roxy Music, Sting, The The, Vangelis...

 

I now never buy a remastered CD unless it is quite clear that it is taken from the original master tape and there are some details about the production. When this is the case, the results can be astonishing for CD: the original release of 'Music for Films' by Brian Eno sounded awful on CD first time round, substantially worse even then the music cassette copy, and a joke compared to the vinyl. When re-released from the cutting masters, a souped-up reel to reel feeding the A-D converter, the result sounded amazing, as did similar original master efforts from The Police and Jethro Tull. The lesson seems clear: if your copy sounds fine, don't replace it unless you have reason to suspect that an earler generation source is employed (or it's a MFSL!).

 

My favorite example of this sort of remaster record-company cynicism is the Digital Remaster of 'Nothing but the Sun' by Sting - a digital remaster of a digital (DDD) recording!!

 

cheers,

 

Dave P.

 

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Welcome to CA! and thank you. When one comes finally down to it, the SOURCE, or master of the piece we are listening to is really what determines our experience of that artist's offering. That source is what we depend on and in every case is what determines whether a smile is on our 'listening to it' face or not. It is really unfortunate that is probably the least documented item on the list of what a CD (or a download, nowadays..) is "made from". It should be the first on the list, no?

 

thanks for speaking up!

 

markr

 

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Hey Dave - You said it all pretty well. 24 bit remasters for 16 bit CDs and even remasters of DDD recordings.

 

To me a remaster just means the sound will be different. Sometimes that means very compressed and loud and other times it means pure sonic bliss! I will always purchase albums from Analogue Productions without worry of compressions and other popular remastering techniques that hinder sound quality.

 

Thanks a lot for the post. I think you'll find a lot of fans around here that are in sync with your thoughts.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

UPDATED: My Audio Systems -> https://audiophile.style/system

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