Record collecting versus hoarding

At what point does "collecting" records become hoarding? Unless you are in the business of selling records either primarily or even secondarily, why do so many people here talk about having 2,3,4,6,10,000 records and CDs? It's not stamps or coins.

Let's say you listen to records 15 hours a week (a good estimate for me) that equates to about 750 hours a year or 1000 records a year. I like to listen to mine at least once every three months - I have 300 records and change. In the rare instance when I replace one for a better sounding one (I've done it maybe 4-5 times), I immediately sell the old one - with only one exception. The Sgt Pepper UHQR. I already had it on the Beatles Collection and do occasionally listen to it when I want a treat. It does sound better than the regular Mofi one, which sounds great to me.

Why would you have multiple copies of the same record and not just listen to the best sounding one and sell the rest?

Why would you want records you listen to less than once a year?

Maybe some people listen a lot more than me (and replace cartridges/styli pretty ofter or have a bunch of them)?

The reason I bring this up is because Acoustic Sounds is releasing Steely Dan's studio albums from the 1970s on their UHQR brand (not sure how they now own the name and not Mofi, but that is not the point), I am a huge fan and will be getting a few of these overpriced (IMHO) records, which will replace a few of my non-audiophile (except the Aja Mofi) records. I plan to sell the Aja Mofi immediately after getting the UHQR, which I am sure will sound much better. That is worth a few bucks, but the others I sell should be worth $10-15 in trade at a record store.

Anyone with records they play less than once a year or keep multiple pressings of a single album, please let me know your rationale.

Are you a hoarder? Too lazy to get rid of them? Like the way they decorate your room?


It behooves me to have about half or more of my LP collection in our basement, because I have an entirely separate audio system also in the basement, which is finished like anyone’s living room. Generally, the LPs in the basement stay in the basement and are played on that system. LPs on the first floor are played on the first floor audio system, by and large. Of course, if I am listening to one of the two systems, and I develop a desire to listen to one particular LP that is on another level of our home, I use the stairs and get it.

I actually don’t think I qualify as a hoarder, by normal standards if not by your standards. About 6 years ago a dear friend of mine passed away. He had 6000 LPs, and his wife offered me my pick of his collection, or all of it if I wanted. I picked out about 900 of his LPs, and she gave the remainder away to a charity. A hoarder would have taken them all. I also don’t think I am much of a "collector", in the sense that a collector would want to accumulate "collectible" LPs. We know what those are. I rarely buy any LPs at all these days, but if I do it will only be for the music, regardless of the label, rarity, or codified collector value. That has always been my modus operandi.

@lewm 1++, I buy music. It could be on LP, digital file or, God forbid, CDs. I am a music collector and everywhere I work and play there is music. Garage, shop, office, workout room, everywhere and every moment I am awake in my own environment. Right at this moment The Beach Boys God Only Knows is playing on the Sonos system in my office even in the exam rooms. The audiophile in me will buy multiple versions of the same album looking for the best example. I have three copies of Bill Evan's Interplay. The 45 rpm version from Analog Productions Riverside box set is by far the best. But, I listened to other less stellar versions for decades because....

I think the one important word that has not been mentioned yet is "completist."

That obsession leads to collecting and/or hoarding; so, different people will define those two words in different ways. 

I think there are probably more "music collectors" who focus on the size of their collection, rather than the value of the collection. This reflects their passion for music; but, many collectors (based on the ones that I know) will rationalize their probable hoarding with statements about the future collectible value of their collection or certain segments of it.

@lewm - that would drive me can you remember what is upstairs and what is downstairs? To each his own.

@mijostyn - not to be personal, but bathroom music? Also, once you have the better record version of the title do you get rid of the inferior copies (not counting ones that are part of a prepackaged collection or "special" copy?

@mitchagain - I am a completist when it comes to trying to get all the records I would like from a particular artist (pop/rock) and really any record I would like in the bop/hard bop/post bop category. I'm pretty picky in what I like, which is why my collection is in the low 300s. If I really like the album, I will see about getting a higher quality copy. Most of my records are audiophile versions, so that doesn't happen very often The only groups that I have/like all their US releases are the Beatles and Steely Dan. None in the jazz category. I do rationalize some (especially the more expensive) records thinking what they will be worth when my wife or kids sell them when I kick the bucket. I do not like the word collector (as you probably can tell). 

I've been hearing more and more about Bill Evans - never got into him as a solo artist (of course he plays on KoB)  - any suggestions Mike?

Soko, If I have a particular LP in mind, I can usually recall when I bought it.  The upstairs LPs are ones I have owned longest.  Or there is some other temporal or musical association that tells me where to look.  For another example, I have a large cache of jazz vocals in one cabinet in our basement.  Anyway, however the mind works, I usually know where to look. There has been a bit of a problem with remembering what I own and where it is to be found since I acquired those 900 LPs at one go.  But those are all in the basement, in one cabinet specially built for them.

Mijo, Probably not a good idea to pipe "God Only Knows" into your examination room, when you are seeing a patient who is actually sick. (I know from my own limited experience in clinic that most aren't sick.)