Music price guides online?
May 16, 2006 5:56 PM   Subscribe

Can you recommend a good online record/CD price guide database to help sell part of my collection?

My wife and I are moving so I'd like to weed out some albums that I don't listen to anymore. They run the musical gamut of early jazz records to japanese folk (with lots of rock, country, and "other" in between). I'm trying to find a good price guide so that I can sell these on my own through various online sources so that I don't just get the requisite $4 at the local store. I've looked at Recordmaster, but can't get much information without paying the $25. There's Goldmine as well, but I don't want to pay $40, especially because I'm not sure if that's really what I'm looking for. And I've tried looking at GEMM and eBay, among others, to figure out a price, but a lot of my stuff doesn't show up there (and if it does, it's usually someone who is looking to gouge the buyer). So does anyone know of anything that is around the two prices mentioned that I can look at to get a rough sense of what to sell my treasures for?
posted by sleepy pete to Media & Arts (9 answers total)
 
You can try looking up each disc on Amazon. If you sell each disc online then you may get maybe two dollars more but may not be worth the hassle of packing, shipping, customer support, etc. I would take the $4 offer at the local store.
posted by StarForce5 at 7:08 PM on May 16, 2006


Though some of their prices are outrageous, Gemm is a good place to start.
posted by TheRaven at 7:40 PM on May 16, 2006


If it's not on GEMM, it's pretty rare and thus worth some good $.

GEMM prices do run the gamut, but you can average out the unreasonable ones. I've had great experience as a GEMM seller -- email me via the profile if you want some help setting up, or if you would like to discuss having someone to act as your selling agent there. (Note though that they're not going to turn quickly).
posted by omnidrew at 7:47 PM on May 16, 2006


I would hightly recommend half.com, another section of eBay that doesn't charge a listing fee and the item stays up until it sells, and is purchased by the user with a credit card so you don't handle any transaction mess, plus you get eBay feedback on top of that. I sell all manner of media (CDs, VHS, DVD, games, etc) there, and the going rate is right there in plain view and you can usually get quite a considerably higher rate than any store buy-back swap (but also good deals on stuff you want). The items are all people selling personal items, so prices fluctuate often both in and out of favor.
posted by vanoakenfold at 7:53 PM on May 16, 2006


Definately *do not* take the store buy-back. Make me a list of stuff you'd let go for $4 and I may very well buy them from you myself for that.
posted by vanoakenfold at 7:56 PM on May 16, 2006


Thanks for the answers so far. I'm the wife. Additional clarification: a number of these records are definitely rare, so we'd prefer to know their market value before putting them up for sale -- we're willing to pay $25--$50 for access to a *good* database but we don't want to pay only to find that it's not comprehensive. We've also got 78s, so bonus if those are included.

If our "investment" price is too low or the resource we're looking for just doesn't exist, that'd be good to know too. Or, if you can recommend good sales sites, that'd be great too, since we've become leery of ebay after being ripped off when we've bought records (as have others we know). Thanks for any help.

(On preview: looks like GEMM is shaping up as a consensus, perhaps? And we are *definitely* not going to store route, so no worries there.)
posted by melissa may at 7:59 PM on May 16, 2006


I used to subscribe to the print version of Goldmine years ago. Pages and pages and pages of tiny print in no discernible order or organization. It took a couple of hours to go through until I got the hang of which vendors typically sold what I was looking for.

It's not clear to me from their site exactly what you get as a subscriber, other than the print magazine. It says you get access to other online features, but I can't figure out what those other features are. If you get an easily searchable database link with your subscription, go for it. If you just get a few more articles, than I would suggest checking bookstores or local libraries for print copies first.
posted by SuperSquirrel at 8:58 PM on May 16, 2006


Check ebay completed listings, and look through the free ebay sales database popsike.com. I've found price guides at the library, and on ebay for a couple of bucks. However, print guides and completed auction results won't predict your next sale. They're good indicators of relative value or of possibilities, but your sales are going to be influenced by a lot of variables. Your auction found two or more competitive bidders? They could drive the price way up. Someone else lists a cleaner copy a few days after you started your auction? You lose out. A high price on a completed auction might be that one big spender who finally got that record they wanted, and there won't be another buyer like that for awhile.

The print guides I've seen don't really reflect the big shift in the market that ebay created. More common records tend to sell on ebay for much, much less than print guides will suggest. But the flipside is that rarities will find a much wider audience and will go for much more. A lot of the most expensive records on ebay aren't in the standard guides at all. However, price guides are good for identifying which edition you have of an oft-reprinted lp.

Here's the "What is my record worth" thread from the ebay music seller's forum. I wouldn't suggest reading through the 900+ comments, but there are some good points early on.

I'd recommend half.com for CD's and Gemm or ebay (store or auction) for the records. Ebay auction especially if you've got something really hot. Selling by the lot on ebay may be the way to go if you can't find buyers otherwise. Here's my ask.me about selling on Gemm, where omnidrew was very helpful. The ebay music seller's forum has some more good advice, and some very helpful posters (as long as you're not asking something that they've already covered to death.)
posted by hydrophonic at 9:23 PM on May 16, 2006


Thanks to everyone. Hydrophonic, that's pretty much what I needed to know and I missed the ask.me about Gemm, so thanks for that as well.
posted by sleepy pete at 9:52 PM on May 16, 2006


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