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Do old 78 rpm records have any value?

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  • Geoff Millar
    commented on 's reply
    If this sort of destruction was being wrought on paintings, sculpture, books and physical cultural artifacts, etc there would be a justifiable outcry; in some cases, such as destruction of our Aboriginal heritage, it would be illegal.

    Geoff

  • Whitneyville1
    replied
    The Visigoths are destroying our movie heritage at an average rate of 1000 miles a day too. SONY/BMG are actively destroying old movies that "don't make money". Yes, many are "B-movie" turkey 6-reelers (hour long films) that could be described as wastes of film to begin with, but many are also the first appearances of major actors on film. At least make a cheap "bounce" to DVD of them before they are burned. That can be done with used TV station equipment for under $300. The Library of Congress says less than 1% of silent films are still extant including "masterpieces" by DeMille and Hitchcock that were sold-out for weeks in major cities in the mid 1920's. Hitchcock's "The Broken Window"(1925) was his greatest silent film and maybe his best mystery EVER and it's GONE. It was in Two-Colour Technicolor Process on safety film and there is no reason it shouldn't have been preserved.

    When I was a little boy, at night, I'd tune our Zenith radio into Mexican and Cuban radio stations and listen to the smooth-style Latin music. Finding that style of music today is harder than finding a fryer with molars! Even Hollywood is having difficulties with "period" music for their movies and clips of TV shows for '50's and '60's era movies. The "dragon" has consumed it's own tail...

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  • TNA
    replied
    You might ask on The Talking Machine Forum,

    https://forum.talkingmachine.info/viewforum.php?f=2

    There may be a member near enough to look at her collection.

    Leave a comment:


  • Geoff Millar
    commented on 's reply
    The cultural vandalism is sad indeed, but unfortunately not unexpected: the BBC destroyed many radio shows such as the Goons, TV shows with Peter Cook and Dudley Moore and who knows what else to 'save space'. The trouble is that the works are destroyed before people know about it, and if they did know, I'm sure there would be collectors and libraries which would gladly have taken such treasures.

    Geoff

  • Steve Lee
    replied
    The Library at Alexandria was burned to the ground as well . . .

    Leave a comment:


  • Whitneyville1
    replied
    Geoff, RCA had a program to "clean-up" their wax masters (now destroyed) back in the mid 1970's and they made transfers to their "Heritage Series" LP's of recordings. I have their re-issues of The Original Dixie Land Jass Band, Moms Mably, Early Louis Armstrong and a couple of others and the sound quality is amazing for acoustic recordings. Sadly, when SONY/BMG purchased RCA Victor, they took all of the wax masters to the Camden city landfill and destroyed them. Even the Library of Congress doesn't have copies of most was what was destroyed, as many of the recordings were never released. Just like the burning of the MGM film vault and the Colombia vault. Super Media Corp. decided it was too costly to keep preserving films that weren't making money for them. But a kid clerk at EMI threw-out 200+ hours of Beatles tapes because they were taking up space in the files too. Let's throw away Andy Warhol's soup can next. It's taking up space that a canvas of some chimps throwing paint at could be using.

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  • Geoff Millar
    replied
    This gives some ideas about value:

    http://www.valueyourmusic.com/most-v...-rpm/last-week

    Geoff

    Leave a comment:


  • davidroberts
    replied
    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Everything is only worth what someone will pay for it. I have certain items that I collect, mostly for nostalgic reasons, that others would find silly.

    I recommend listing them on fleabay with a reserve if you wish and seeing what the market will bare. Although I can imagine shopping might be a PIA.

    Leave a comment:


  • Geoff Millar
    commented on 's reply
    I have an LP transfer of the 1926 recording of the Beethoven Violin Concerto by Fritz Kreisler and Leo Blech, obviously transferred from 78s. I tried to 'clean it up' using the Audacity noise sampling/removal function and the results were terrible, there was hardly any music left!

    Geoff

  • Whitneyville1
    replied
    I have paid handsome ($50) prices for excellent (as new) 78 recordings (some 16" discs) of things unavailable any other way. Du Jazz Band du Hot Club of France (Louis Armstrong, Django Reinehardt, Stepahne Grappelli, et al) on Pathe (90 RPM thank you!) Enrico Caruso, The Original Dixieland Jass Band, 1880's flat disc Negro Gospel Quartet and Quintets cut in Skokie, IL unbelievable voices! (Edison wouldn't allow anything but "Coon songs" to be recorded on his cylinders, he was such a bigot! He also wouldn't record "***** Jew-Boy" Eddie Cantor or Al Jolson.) My 90 RPM "DIAMOND" is Anton Rubinstein playing Chopin, since he KNEW Chopin. Technically it's poor, but a now 140 year-old recording I cut some slack for. Audacity's algorithms aren't optimized for acoustic recordings this old.

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  • relder
    replied
    Desperate Man Blues is an interesting documentary on 78 collecting.

    Leave a comment:


  • fpitas
    commented on 's reply
    I imagine if one is lucky enough to own one of the sought-after masters you can almost name your price.

  • Geoff Millar
    commented on 's reply
    True, fidelity - aided by years of wear, scratches, dust, finger grease etc - is poor, but LP and CD transfers of the 78 masters by Naxos, EMI and RCA were at least listenable and the only way to hear some great artists such as Artur Schnabel and Dinu Lipatti.

    Geoff

  • fpitas
    replied
    Originally posted by billfitzmaurice View Post
    Collectors don't buy them to play them, they buy them to have them. Like coins and stamps their value is based on their rarity. $100 is rare, $1,000 is very rare, $5,000 is extremely rare. You have to research each individually.
    I think that's right, at least typically. Besides, the fidelity is just awful by modern standards.

    Leave a comment:


  • billfitzmaurice
    replied
    Collectors don't buy them to play them, they buy them to have them. Like coins and stamps their value is based on their rarity. $100 is rare, $1,000 is very rare, $5,000 is extremely rare. You have to research each individually.

    Leave a comment:

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