Search Manic Mark's Blog

Friday, December 28, 2012

How Much Is My Album Worth?

This is an impossible question for me to answer taking into account all the ways people buy and sell  albums.

However, here is how I value the records I collect.

I start by searching completed auctions on ebay. Ebay, for me, is a good place to review current real market values. I check the completed auctions and compare the number of copies on the market, prices and what copies have and or have not sold for.

If you do not see your album listed on ebay at all, that does not necessarily mean that you’ve got a rare and valuable record on your hands. You may have an obscure record with limited appeal to a small number of collectors.

If I tell you your album is worth $10, but then you find your album listed online for a higher price? The answer is that prices are fixed for an entire host of reasons which are not tied to real market value.

There are a great number of online resources to search for values, including,, and Many record dealers also have online storefronts. But, again, prices will be all over the place. Some prices will be absurdly high. Buyer beware.

Now, I back up to the issue of rarity vs. obscurity. I blog few rare records. I blog obscure records. Some record stores I visit don’t really know what to do with the records I like to collect. Some dealers discard or refuse to buy the records that I value. Other dealers, both online and brick-and-mortar sellers, over-value the records I enjoy. I've noticed copies of albums I fine interesting literally sit untouched in record stores for years. What this tells me is that the some records are obscure and valued, but by a select few collectors who value them differently. So, if you see a copy of a record on a blog, that does not mean that the record is a pricey collectible (although it could be).

You will also need to consider the condition of your album, but that is a different can of worms that I'll leave unopened for the moment.


  1. Well put Mark.

    WHat i personally value are mostly odd, obscure, and largely forgotten records. What are they "worth?" Their worth what i pay for them... Once in a while i'll splurge and spend a few bucks on a 45 that i've been searching for, but for the most part what i buy is what i happen to find at that particular time, and comes from cheapo bargain bins. Even though it might not be worth much dollar-wise, my 45 collection is priceless to me.

    There's a fine line between 'rare' and 'obscure.' To me, rare is something that there are few original copies of that everybody wants but nobody has- Say, the Beatles butcher baby album in mint condition. Obscure is something that there are also very few original copies of, but by artists that not many people remember or have even heard of, and that no one (except folks like Mark and myself) care about. These can usually be had for pocket change, but only a small select group of collectors actually collect them. To us, they are very valuable...

    So who's to say what a particular record is worth. There are a lot of variables involved.

    There's my two-cents.

    1. Thanks Jeff! Sounds like we buy the same way. That's a good illustration to help differentiate between rare and obscure.

  2. Space age pop/easy listening records aren't exactly considered "cool" or desirable by most, and I'm perfectly fine with that. It allows me to bring home a bag full of really interesting music with amazing cover art/graphics for only a few dollars. Keep up the great work Mark.


Howdy! Thanks for leaving your thoughts!