The best deal I ever got was on speakers which were a gift to my son. I responded to an ad here on A-gon from an audiophile that lives in Chandler, AZ -- about 2 miles from my son's house. The seller was offering a pair of Vandersteen 3A speakers AND a Vandersteen VCC-1 center channel for a total price of $1500 -- and both speakers were only 18 months old. Since my son was able to pick up the speakers, there was no shipping either. Given that the MSRP on the speakers was $3300 (plus no sales tax or shipping), I thought $1500 was a hell of a bargain. Needless to say, my son was pretty pleased too!!
I've gotten a few killer deals here at the gon. I purchased a Sharp XV-S55U projector from a dealer with the factory waranty, retail price $8600, what I paid $1200 plus shipping- its still under that factory waranty fwiw and not an ounce of trouble. I bought an accuphase processor for 1/4 of its retail value(retail was 19k) that worked flawlessly and beyond my expectations- it was NOT a grey market component either. Recently I purchased a brand new un-used speaker wire pair for nearly half retail. There are plenty of good deals out there just have to jump on them when you see them. I saw a Koetsu rosewood cartridge at an auction with no reserve go for $580 and change- that is a steal! to bad I didn't see it till the auction was closed, I have never owned a turn table but I would have bought it any way.
My greatest bargain has been the relationships which came about as a result of buying and selling on Audiogon.
I found a ReVox B-760 Tuner in a pawnshop in Bloomington, IL for $175. Retail was $1600. It has a few marks on it but sounds terrific. That was 10 years ago!
Every $.50 LP at book sales.
A small independent store that I used to shop at for used CD's decided to increase their price to $8-$10 (this was a few years ago). I was a regular, and asked the owner if he could hold his price (I had been buying 5 to 10 CD's per week, and holding the old price would have meant NOT INCREASING by $1.00 per CD). Well, I got the standard, "my expenses have gone up, the cat had kittens, etc." Hey, I respect his right to conduct his business as he sees fit, since I have the right to shop elsewhere! As I was leaving his store for the last time, I spotted a MFSL Gold Disc, Santana's "Abraxis" for $9.00!!! How sweet my last purchase was! Happy Tunes!
An unkown buyer bought a single rare tube from me for $5. I sold it cheap since we were both regulars on this site. Well, it turned out to be for a very old friend of mine $1500 miles away. We keep in much better contact now and still laugh about his bargain!
I'm with Bill E. I've met some of the best people through this site. The equipment is just 'stuff'.
I walked into a pawnshop in Key West, Fl and saw a Marantz 8B in perfect condition -playing. The price tag said $50. I didn't even try to talk the owner down.
Was wrecking a house of a 91 year old gentleman who went to live with his 60 year old son. They took everything they wanted out of the house and said we could have the rest of what was in the house. An Altec 604B and Altec 604C, Mac 225 tube amp and Mac MX113 preamp, Thorens TD111 turntable, plus a University cornerhorn speaker that sold for $550.00 new in 1958. I found a match on Ebay for $185.00 and they are used in my garage system with a 6V6 amp. They sound great with their separate horns for mid and tweeters with 15 inch woofers. Just one bluesy sound.
In my initial post, I should also have included the best bargain I got on video gear. Shortly before Christmas last year, a friend of mine gave me a tip that "uBid.com" had some Panasonic PV-HS2000 "Replay TV" hard disk recorders selling for $289 (MSRP was $600). The units came with a $100 rebate, which reduced the purchase price to $189, plus $25 shipping. In addition, these units came with a permanent subscription to "Replay TV" included in the price. I've been extremely pleased with the quality of the video, and the convenience is unsurpassed.
A few years ago I picked up a set of 1500.00 Audioquest Clear speaker cables for 75.00.
In my original posting I forgot to mention on top of all the Adcom gear and Paradigm Titan speakers also included was an Alesis EQ-120 EQ, Middle Atlantic power line conditioner, a 72"(tall) Middle Atlantic 19" Rack and five steel Middle Atlantic rackmount CD storage units. This all came from someone getting out of A/V production and oh yeah all the Adcom gear came with the optional rackmount adapters. In all about five grand+ worth of stuff (new).
I found one of the rarest and best tube tuners, the Fisher FM-1000 with cabinet, in excellent condition, except for the knob inserts at Goodwill for $35.00. I cleaned it up and bought a new set of inserts from Mr. Puglese, the Fisher Dr. The thing worked flawlessly and looked like it came from a time warp.
If it weren't for "killer deals", i would not have been able to afford 1/10 the gear that i currently have. Anyone that talks to me on a regular basis knows how "lucky" i am at sniffing out "bargains". I have bought speakers that sold for $4000 for $200, digital gear that was $5000 for $450, a TT / Tonearm combo that was $5000 for $700, another TT / Tonearm combo that was about $7000 for $1250, $1000+ biwired shotgun speaker cables for $85, etc... I have even traded old radio gear that i had laying around ( valued at about $150 on the used market ) for $2500 speakers to one of my customers. I went to buy one piece of gear and the guy gave me a piece of gear that he no longer wanted or used. As it turns out, it was a professional grade audio / video machine that had special features used for doing business presentations. After doing some research, i found out that it actually retailed at $5000 !!! Also found a Fisher tube receiver that was completely functional with all original tubes in the garbage. Stumbled across a piece made by Sequerra for $3 at a local flea market !!! All i can say is, I HOPE IT NEVER STOPS !!! Bring it on, baby !!! : ) Sean
I once helped someone move house and found a Thorens TD 125 turntable with a SME 3009 arm and a Stanton cartridge. The dustcover was damaged, so this guy wouldn't take more then 45 dollars, while the retailprice was around 1000 dollars. Who am I to argue with that?
Not much, but i needed an older harmon kardon cd player to match the hk receiver i had given my sister (the new ones were really unreliable and they had done away with the curved black faceplate and just went to the flat look). After buying one of the new lemons (it broke in a day) someone in canada on agon had a unit from the same year as the receiver. It was $500msrp and the seller was asking $100. It went great with the $400 msrp pr celestion minimonitors I also got her for $150 floor models. Not as good as some of you guys finds, but for $300 total system it wasnt bad.
At the local thrift for $175.00. Also a Thorens TD160 MK2 for $10.00 at the same place. P.S. This is in Canadian currency.
When the Marantz CD63SE was getting killer reviews. And A list price of $500.00, I pick one up, from one of those peolpe who are constantly upgrading for $75.00. Two months old.Still use it in my second system. And still sounds great.
$1 for ONE Klipsch Heresy in good condition at garage sale.
kenwood kt-8300 for $70...but better still
CTC BBQ amp ($7k retail, over $3500 in parts) for $1800...better still: entec LF20 subs (2) for $1200...the best: G&D custom preamp for $700...as good in sound quality as their transports...and got everything (except the tuner) from this board..each item waiting for weeks before i demonstrated interest...
lesson learned: custom/low production runs of incredible gear = cheap, world class sound.
harman/kardon 930 Receiver for $10 at a Tag Sale in 1998.
Unit was in extremely good cosmetic condition and included the optional walnut case.
The only "problem" was that one channel was not working. This was due to a bad fuse. Replaced the fuse (cost less than a $1). Both channels worked! No further problems.
Great unit. I have owned one since 1973.
I sold this "bargain" h/k 930 to another harman/kardon collector.
ads L-710 Speakers for $10 at a Tag Sale in 2001
The cabinets (real walnut wood veneer) were in rough shape, but the speaker drivers were in good condition.
When I took these speakers home and hooked them up, I could not believe how good they sounded! Far better than my Original Large Advent Speakers (owned since 1975).
These ads speakers introduced me to the "European" speaker sound and converted my preference from the "New England" speaker sound of KLH and Advents (via Henry Kloss).
Tandberg 330 MKII tape deck with rosewood side panels for under 50.00 on ebay.
Forgot to list my Best Find Ever:
Keith Monks Audio Labs Record Cleaning Machine at a flea market for 75.00
Hafler DH100 preamp 50$ at a yard sale and he threw in 3 pairs of 15 foot canare wire custom Interconnects.
All are in use now.
Almst forgot this, While walking the dog one day I spotted a older Kenwood integrated amplifier in someones trash can.
Was in nice shape, figured it was DOA but took it home anyway and It worked perfectly. Took it to a local used audio shop and sold it for $50.00!!
A friend gave me two tickets to a Bruce Springsteen concert.
Over the past weekend, I picked up a Nakamichi CD4 single disc player with box and remote, excellent physical and mechanical condition for 10.00. Don't know a damn thing about it. Little help here?
Three actually - 2 Dynacos'; an SCA-35 integrated amp for $25 and a PAT-4 preamp for $10, both found at thrift/salvage stores in perfect working order and damn-near perfect cosmetic condition! WOO-HOO! The third was a GAS Thaedra preamp for free 'cause it didn't work!
got 3, 4 inch thick slabs of finished marble (with rounded edges) that were perfect for my 2 mono blocks and cd player that cost only $5
got a few of my favorite discs at flee markets for $.50 each
Too many to tell, but one recently is a Denon POA-2400A power amp and Kenwood KT-8300 WITH AR speakers for $100, from the original owner. WOW they are in excellent condition. He wanted to make sure he gave me a good deal and I sure am grateful. Oh and the Yamaha M4 power amp for $10 is another one recently. Out to find more!!
a fisher am/fm receiver (30w/ch), a pair of fisher 10in-3way speakers in REAL walnut veneer, and a garrard turntable w/cartridge and dust cover, & all the wire i needed. all brand new- $350.
Went to a local buy and sell found a Sunfire MK II for a $175.00 CDN in mint condition. Sweeeet. They said they couldn't find any info on it to price it properly so they guessed as to it's value.Typical philistine pig ignorance I've come to expect from those non-creative garbage. True story.
1) i found a luxman r-115 receiver, luxman dc-113 cd changer, and luxman dual cassette deck for $50 at a garage sale. i asked the lady if she had any speakers, and she "threw in" a pair of psb 30 mkIIs. I still use it as a 2nd system and it sounds SWEET.
2) jbl l-100 speakers in the classifieds for $40. they looked thrashed, but sound great.
I went to a guy's house to buy a vcr he advertised, and he ended up GIVING a pair of McIntosh Mc 30's to me. I could never beat that deal. I still have these beauties, and appreciate ol Vern's generosity.
Finding a McIntosh C31-V for $450 including shipping on audiogon. It sounds nicer then my old Adcom.
From my local Salvation Army Store...
A Pioneer SX-1250 Receiver. Just needed a good cleaning. $80.00. 160W per channel monster.
Two Pair of JBL-L100's. Not at the same time. $40 and $55 dollars/pair.
SAE A7/T7 integrated amp/tuner combo. Near Mint condition. $65.00.
Unfortunately, they have changed their pricing strategy and now everything is priced so rediculously high, even at 50%off sales, it's not a bargain.
A pair of Hales Revelation 3's from audiogon - $600. Not a complete steal, but a huge bargain nontheless. Let me tell you about the Marantz model 9's I missed for $100...
I found the rarest of all, a marigo apparition series 2 Reference line conditioner, what a babe, the best parallel line conditioner ever made!!
FREE i am new to the audiophile game i get all of your knowledge thanks for the great advice(any body got any mac equipment they want to give away)
Just acquired Klipsh Heresys, very clean, for $20.50. Have to think awhile if I've had a better bargin.
This weekend I visited a friend of mine, who proudly told me he bought some 50-something records including some rare Zappa-stuff. "Oh, and by the way, the guy also gave me his turntable. You think it's worth something?"
He then showed me a Thorens TD160 Super BC/SMEIII combination in mint condition. He payed about 60 dollars for the lot. In a (very rare) flash of honesty I told him he had a real gem in his hands. I should've lied and buy the Thorens for 25 bucks. Sigh.....
....for $799.00. $1299.00 list, but I would have paid $2000.00 for it in a snap. Last new one sold in the world. Replaced a stack of Sansui's with it. Much easier to move around.
The Tandberg 2080 receiver... was cut off the beginning of thr previous post.
A pair of ar-1's(from 1959) at a thrift store for $20 (sold on ebay for +900.00) mint mcintosh c22+c39's for $500 each - a kenwood kt5020 tuner for $20.00(pawnshop) a yamaha t-85 tuner for $35.00 - marantz cdr-630 20.00 - the deals are there if you look hard enough.
Mcintosh MC30 in pristine working cond. (I was told it was used as a mic amp and stored inside a podium at a local middle school for its entire life), Sherwood Tuner, and Mac C4 Audio Compensator - all for 8 bucks at the thrift store. I don't think I will ever top that.
How do you guys get these deals ??? Wow !!!!!!
I have been visiting thrift stores for years and have a basement full of treasures (hard to let go of them). Some of my best finds were a Marantz 7C preamp with wood case for $4.99, a Mcintosh MAC-1900 receiver $2.00 (it was 1/2 price day), a Stack of Luxman Int. Amp, Tuner, & Cassett $25, A pair of Thiel CS-1 for $15, Rotel RCD-855 CD player $9.99. Thw list goes on and on.
Ok... I bet i beat everyone here!
I bought 2 Vandersteen 2's, a Threshold SL10 Preamp, Parasound HFC1200 amp, and a magnam dynalab tuner, with the 4 speaker cables (highEnd) required for the vandersteen's for... get this $50.00 cash