How To Make Money With Computers – Collecting vintage computers and technology today is one of the fastest growing niches for collectible enthusiasts. Many old models are now considered collectable and worth a considerable amount of money. And, as technology evolves and new models replace existing ones, more items become retro and later vintage.
Collectors are attracted to older technology and will pay huge prices for rare pieces. This includes gadgets and technologies that were not commercially successful at the time, because their popularity almost made them special.
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If you think you have an old battered Amstrad or Betamax in the attic, consider taking it out, stocking it up and seeing what it’s worth today by following this handy guide.
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You may be wondering why anyone would want an old piece of tech, but collectors have their reasons. It is important that you understand the rationale behind collecting, before you flog your stuff.
When it comes to collecting vintage computers and gadgets, history is important. Technology represents the road map of human innovation and progress and that is what collectors celebrate. These vintage pieces of technology are an important part of our lives.
The Apple-1 was one of the first desktop computers produced by Apple. Naturally, it has become a piece of history. Not only collectors are interested, but museums are also interested. If you can get your hands on a computer that is historically significant, then you have a piece of history in your hands that will be bound to make you money.
Many people who grew up with old computers and consoles now look back on their childhood through rose-tinted lenses. It could be after their first game console or vintage computer they opened their business on. Whatever the nostalgia trip, we think they’ll be willing to send big bucks.
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Erik Klein, owner of vintage-computer.com who has amassed a large collection of vintage machines, says “Vintage computers are driven almost entirely by nostalgia. There aren’t many practical uses for the Atari 800 today but there are people who remember how amazing that machine (and other ) when new and they want to feel and enjoy it again.The impact of Star Raiders or M.U.L.E on today’s working adults cannot be underestimated.
Some people simply like to collect vintage computers and pieces of retro technology. These collectors will happily pay a tidy sum to add to their collection.
An interesting trend began to catch on collectors using retro game consoles as ornaments. These are the things they grew up with and spent time with their loved ones. For some, it can be argued that this machine is considered a companion in its own right. This view is easy to accept when it comes to cars, so it makes sense to apply it to other machines that also have emotional value.
People who collect vintage computers and other gadgets after finding something rare and interesting. They may want to resell the item or brag about their purchase.
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While you may not have an Apple-1 tucked away in your attic, there are other vintage computers and consoles that collectors will want. Before you try and make some cash from your unwanted gadgets, you need to know what collectors are looking for.
Any mass-produced item is likely to be rare. This is because they are common and easy to find. However, there are exceptions to this rule such as the Dreamcast. Computer models from the 1970s and 1980s are quite rare because they were not produced in large numbers. It is possible that many models are probably also removed, so they are more valuable.
The earlier an item is made in the production process, the more likely it is worth a pretty penny. Original models tend to be rare and have fewer ‘tweaks’ compared to their more mass-produced successors. For example, the original iPhone, although mass-produced, was not produced on the same scale as the newer models. It will forever go down in history as the model that started the iPhone revolution, and because of this it is likely to be more valuable over time than any successor model – regardless of how many bells and whistles they have!
The condition of a vintage item will affect its price tag. This is especially clear with early videos that can easily generate hundreds of pounds in original packaging. However, games without their packaging are often worthless. This does not necessarily mean that your item will be worthless without a box, the price is just likely to dip.
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Siemens CL4 SIMPAD is an internet tablet that is not sold at all because it runs on Windows CE, an operating system that does not shut down. However, now it can replace Windows CE with an alternative operating system called Linux. This has given the tablet new life and a great price tag, if you have one buried at home. We have seen some priced at £250.
A Sega Saturn was the console before the Dreamcast. Here at, we saw a boxed Sega Saturn going for £722 on eBay. A poorly preserved Sega Saturn console can still fetch several hundred. So if you’ve got some stashed away in the cupboard, maybe it’s time to ditch the cobwebs and sell them for cash.
Remember! Even failed vintage computers and other gadgets from the 80s and 90s can fetch high prices. Try to determine why the computer is rare. Other owners can sell theirs and increase the value for you!
Awareness of the value that vintage computers hold has grown over the years. Buyers and sellers are highly scrutinized. As such, it’s getting harder to find vintage computers for a good price. However, this means that you will get a lot of money, if you have a vintage gadget.
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Now is the time to go rooting through the attic for technological gems, especially if you know that some old tech is stored away up there. If you think this might be you, try searching for the gadget and see if it works. Then, you need to find the value.
Erik Klein, a vintage computer expert, says: “Finding vintage items is, in my opinion, a big part of the adventure. There are many possible sources, each with their own advantages and pitfalls.
If you want to try and make money from vintage items, then this is where you should start:
It is possible that you will find a good piece of equipment in the car boot sale. However, you must be determined. Just because you are hunting for something specific, don’t think you will find that item. That’s not to say car boot sales aren’t worth looking at, you just have to be realistic and do your research.
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Auctions are easier to generate good leads. Try and watch out for auctions that auction assets from liquid businesses that use computers. It’s likely you’ll be bidding against several specialists and enthusiasts, so make sure you know how high you’re going to bid. Otherwise, you may not get such a good deal.
You can try searching eBay. The problem is that you are likely to struggle to find a good price. Even if the seller does not recognize the value of their goods, there will be many collectors who do. That being said, it’s always worth a try!
A Hamfest is when people interested in amateur radio gather for a convention. You’ll find flea markets at these events, so you might have the chance to buy a piece of vintage technology. If you want to know what events are happening near you visit the Radio Society of Great Britain.
You can find great ones on Freecycle. You won’t be the only one looking for vintage tech on these sites, so make sure you strike fast to get what you want.
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Eric Klein of Vintage Computing says: “My site has a message board and marketplace that is a good source for machines, parts, and advice. There are others out there too. Just be aware of the local culture. Collector-oriented sites will be a bit wary.” to the type of picker looking for a quick buck. Fortunately, though, most people have a little bit of both. They collect some and sell some to finance their next purchase…”
If you are looking for an old computer, place an ad in your local paper. Make sure you define what you mean by old, otherwise you can get a lot of old tat. You never know what people might say just throw it away!
The price tag will depend on the item you are selling. You have to take into account the state of the computer and the appetite of the market. You can make hundreds or even thousands of pounds, no one sets the price.
Erik Klein says “At the ridiculously high end, there are original Apple-1 machines for sale today that are approaching a million dollars. These machines sold in the $15,000-$25,000 range only 7 or 8 years ago and were originally sold for under $700 in 1976 .
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