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Internet database appraising value of old vinyls?, Internet search of monetary value of very old records.
rocket_pc
post Aug 4 2010, 00:18
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Hi, fellow audiophiles,

I was here on the forum, this past year about recording vinyls to computer. I still haven't gotton around to completing the project; Maybe this October.

The topic of this thread is about finding the value of old phonograph records. I found a stack of records in the attic of my parent's home. If they are of any value, I would sell the records and get a computer for them. Is there a database somewhere that lists the names of musicians and songs of vintage records?


If I find they are of value, some other questions I may ask are:

- An auction site suggested for selling old records? ebay?

- How to package these fragile records for shipping. If there is a place that sells special packaging to ship the records?

I would like to record the songs from these records, before selling, to hear what was on them:

- If the turntable requires a special needle for recording the music from these old vinyls. Or if could use the old DJ needle that was originally on this Numark turntable. I would be concerned that these very worn records would destroy a high quality needle.

- Special cleaner for cleaning these records or can a cleaner be made from household substances?

I am posting this topic several months in advance of starting the project, (maybe in October). Though I would like to conduct a search on the value of the records, this week.

Thank you for your time and attention on this subject.

Don



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DVDdoug
post Aug 4 2010, 01:46
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For selling, and to check-out some values/prices try Discogs.com. And, they have a database too.

There doesn't seem to be one complete database, and sometimes it's best just to Google the artist & title (and the year or release number, or whatever you can get off the label). There are quite a few partial databases and databases that specialize on a particular genre, and you can find complete discographies for some particular artists and/or some particular labels

Here are a few more places to try:
Song-Database.com
UMDmusic.com
AllMusic.com

I think most "used records" go for about a dollar at a "thrift store" or on eBay. I'm not sure how to find out if one is "collectable" and worth something, unless you can find the same thing for sale or in a "wanted" ad.

QUOTE
If the turntable requires a special needle for recording the music from these old vinyls. Or if could use the old DJ needle that was originally on this Numark turntable. I would be concerned that these very worn records would destroy a high quality needle.
If you have any 78's you need a special "fatter" stylus. Otherwise, I wouldn't worry about damaging your stylus.

I don't have any good suggestions for cleaning or shipping. I have a Discwasher, but I think it's more for routine dust removal than deep cleaning of old dirty records. "Modern" vinyl (PVC = polyvinyl chloride) records are fairly tough & flexible. I once joined one of those "record clubs", and they sent the records through the mail in a cardboard envelope. Older (shellac?) 78s were brittle.

QUOTE
I would like to record the songs from these records, before selling...
I believe that's a copyright violation here in the U.S. Since the discussion of copyright violation is discouraged here, let's pretend you are going to copy some records, and sell others. wink.gif

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rocket_pc
post Aug 4 2010, 02:47
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DVDdoug,

Thank you for your reply.

These are very old records. A couple of them appeared to be "home-made" vinyls done of music produced by local organizations. All of those, the plastic or whatever was peeling off, with a steel core at the center. They had hand printed on the labels, 1943. I thought steel was a limited commodity at that time. The others may not be from the 40s, maybe the 50s: Gene Autry, Bing Crosby, Burl Ives, Harry James, Frank Sinatra, Eddy Howard, etc.

The records may have been quite valuable if they had been stored inside at room temperature, but have been in the roasting hot attic for over forty years. The records are so brittle, they are as fragile as thin glass. Thats why I was asking about special packaging for shipping. And recording them, to save the music in case the records get broken. I would explain the condition, and the risk of buying, of course, if tried to sell them. I don't know if the main value is the physical record or the music on them. I could send a cd of the recording to the person, if they wanted. Possibly, the copyright has expired after 45 years. Or is that 75 years?

Don
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DonP
post Aug 4 2010, 12:33
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QUOTE (rocket_pc @ Aug 3 2010, 21:47) *
. Possibly, the copyright has expired after 45 years. Or is that 75 years?

Don


Depends on whether it's been renewed. The situation changes; anytime an old Disney product is close to expiring they pump some more money into Congress to get the term extended.

At one time, not sure now, a copyright could only be renewed if the work was still in publication.
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pdq
post Aug 4 2010, 14:12
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QUOTE (rocket_pc @ Aug 3 2010, 21:47) *
All of those, the plastic or whatever was peeling off, with a steel core at the center. They had hand printed on the labels, 1943. I thought steel was a limited commodity at that time.

Actually it was copper that was in short supply. That is why pennies were made of steel during the war.
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2Bdecided
post Aug 4 2010, 14:48
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People sell 78s on eBay all the time, and post them too...

http://www.normanfield.com/packing.htm

The artists you list are hardly rare. I've no idea if the titles you have are rare or desirable. Check completed listings on eBay.

If they've warped / melted / craked / broken, they're useless. Otherwise, temperature cycling can increase surface noise, but you won't know this until you play them (and you probably don't know what an undamaged 78 sounds like anyway - they're not exactly lacking in noise!). It's usual for them to be fragile - that's not due to storage at high temperatures.

QUOTE
And recording them, to save the music in case the records get broken.
I think any intrinsic value is in the records themselves, if they have any. I bet the music itself is all very commonly available. Spotify lists 7438 Bing Crosby tracks, almost all out-of-copyright re-issues (50 year copyright in Europe). Mind you, half of these are probably "White Christmas!"

Take care of them and play them. They're fun.

If you don't want them, and they're nothing "special", then try to sell them as a lot to someone who is interested.

Cheers,
David.
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rocket_pc
post Aug 5 2010, 05:58
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Thank you for your replies. I looked up a few of the records on the links that DVDdoug mentioned and did not find them listed. Of the more peculiar records in the stack, is "Freight Train Blues" and "Wabash Canon Ball" by Roy Acuff and His Crazy Tennesseeans. Okeh label. "Freight Train Blues" is a very bizarre song recorded by Bob Dylan. It seems that anybody collecting Bob Dylan would be interested in this record, because these musicians may have been the inspiration of the Bob Dylan recording. When doing a google search for "Freight Train Blues" by Roy Acuff and His Crazy Tennesseeans, one of the first listings was grrecords.com: <http://grrecords.com/Archives/GRR209HIGHBIDS.PDF> It was selling for five dollars. The recording label for it, though, was Columbia rather than the Okeh label on the one I have. If the Okeh label recording preceded the Columbia recording, it may be more valuable, though the Columbia may be a better recording.

Don

This post has been edited by greynol: Aug 5 2010, 16:39
Reason for edit: removed unnecessary full-quotation of the previous post. also removed subsequent post by you quoting this post (with the quote of the previous post) which contained no other content. please learn how to craft a proper reply.
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rocket_pc
post Aug 5 2010, 06:12
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Oh yeah, I just looked up the Norman Field, packaging suggestions. Thanks for the link.

Don
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