"Vintage audio" is back in fashion, but you don't necessarily have to go into a nice used dealer to find it. It is easier than ever to download amazing stuff at very affordable prices, or even better, for free. For example, I've had more than a few friends finding work tube amplifiers on the edge ̵
Dumpster diving audiophiles!
A Facebook friend succeeded when he discovered a very advanced Meridian CD player sitting on a dumpster! Worked well, and he sold the latter to SEK 250! A friend found the Technics RS-1500 and Tascam 34B real-to-real tape recorder behind a dumpster in Chicago, both were in working order! Another of my audio friends made a high-quality Nakamichi CR-2 cassette deck and the matching TA-2A tuner / amplifier on the street with instruction books and remote controls. There was also a Nakamichi six-CD CD changer, but the cassette decks and amplifier were all he could styp home!
I have certainly seen my share of abandoned speakers on the New York City streets. Keep your eyes peeled for free sounds and eventually stumble upon valuable things. One of my writers found boxes filled with mint-condition LP, mostly in good shape, on the street!
Tantalizing finds on Craigslist and eBay
Vintage stereo receiver on eBay is not free, but I discovered a Pioneer SX-434 for $ 60, an amazing Yamaha R-300 for $ 179, Sony STR 6040 for $ 125 and a mint Marantz 2238B for $ 575. All are credible bargains.
When looking for speakers, it was no less tempting: Vandersteen 1C towers $ 389, Magnepan MG IIB flat-panel speaker for $ 625, 40-year-old Klipsch Heresy horn for $ 700 and Snell Acoustic Type E IVs for $ 569 All prices apply to speakers.
Still with turntables, I found a Thorens TD160 Mk2 for $ 96, a Technics SL-DD22 for $ 120 and an Elac Miracord 50H for $ 300. I owned one just like it last decades ago.
I quote only these as an example, but it is about shopping for brands like these on eBay or Craigslist can provide first-class vintage sound without breaking the bank.
Of course, decades of sound may need service; please be aware of it before you buy. Ask questions, start with "does it work?" Just putting on is no guarantee that it will be in proper operation. When in doubt about the seller's ability to confirm that the product is in good condition, do not buy it. Of course, if there are a couple of 10 speakers on a farm sale, and they look decent enough, it's probably OK to take your chances.
Purchasing from a sound specialist dealer with technicians checking out the bill and providing a guarantee is worth considering, but the annual pieces are likely to be more expensive than buying from people who do not offer any guarantees.