Auction Hunters! Help me value these IMAX Projector lenses.
November 25, 2012 5:56 PM   Subscribe

I need help valuing and perhaps selling some IMAX projector lenses and power supplies.

As a sort of hobby I buy and sell surplus electronics. I try to specialize in AV related gear and most of what I buy is pretty simple to sell on Craigslist or eBay. Usually I just turn and burn and try to make a reasonable profit. Last week was a little different. One of our local Multiplex's closed down awhile back and a bunch of stuff showed up at a local bankruptcy auction. As pure speculation on my part, I picked up two matching lenses made by ELCAN out of Canada for the two IMAX projectors that were used in said theater. They clearly state IMAX on them, as did the two giant Miller power supplies which are also labeled left and right for 3D. The power supplies I can sell pretty easily as they could be used for welding as well, but I would hate to "leave money on the table" by selling them as welding supplies vs. their true noble use. I've searched high and low on the web and have contacted Elcan directly (with no response) but have yet to come up with any good leads or any idea of actual value. I know buying without knowing a value is rarely a good idea, but I don't want to compound the issue by selling it without that knowledge. Any ideas, contacts or info would be greatly appreciated.
posted by HappyHippo to Technology (2 answers total)
I used to be an IMAX projectionist many many moons ago (when there were only about 70 theatres total). Anyway, that type of gear may be something you could sell to a

The problem with IMAX is that it is under (or used to be) a maintenance contract, so these parts may not be something a theatre can buy without voiding their service contract. So that route may not be the best method.

However, IMAX projection systems (and their variants) is a pretty tightly controlled technology so what you have from one theatre may be exchangeable in another. For example, when I was doing it, there was one piece of equipment where it really helped to have a spare around so it could be swapped between showings as opposed to being reset between movies. In that case, it was the item called a field flattener that is an essential piece of the system in more ways than one. Anyway, having a part like that to sell to another theatre would be a good find for a IMAX Chief Projectionist.

However, I would start first by getting in touch with IMAX Corporate in Canada. They may have a buy-back program or would be willing to do so of parts that you have acquired. From there, they can then clean them up and re-distribute.
posted by lampshade at 6:12 PM on November 25, 2012

Current IMAX projectionist here: IMAX is pretty sniffy about letting proprietary IMAX stuff out into the wild; definately check with them before you sell to anyone else --- they always want our old used/damaged/defective parts returned to be re-habbed, for instance. They're not as huffy about corporate rights as, say, Disney (protip: do NOT mess with the Mouse!) but IMAX Corp. can still be kind of sensitive. Who knows, they might tell you 'thanks but no thanks', but it'lll still make your life easier if you get that in writing from them.
posted by easily confused at 6:49 PM on November 25, 2012

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