Jon Johnson

Geek Question: Buying Factory Refurb Gear

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This question might appeal more to us than the unsuspecting GASer. When considering buying a factory refurb product be it synth, effect, mixer, etc. Do you care whether it has the original box, packaging, documentation?

 

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I always want all the packing if possible but when the price is right and the unit is in close to factory as possible or even if its not I'll bite. When i read listings and descriptions my biggest concern is if a retailer is actually re-selling their demo models and the manufacturer won't care about you if something goes wrong. 

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I used to prefer "blow-out" specials--new, unused gear that was discontinued, clearance, outdated, etc. to used, more current gear. Those all included original manuals, packing materials, etc.  Then I got into getting used gear from an online backyard sale where (after being burned from sellers I would never do business with again) I learned how to read what the sellers weren't saying [i.e., deliberately left out] how to scrutinize pictures (or lack of pictures, factory shots, etc.), and how to ask questions so that if the seller was concealing things, he or she just didn't answer instead of outright lying. Unfortunately, sometimes sellers of used pack the gear with packing peanuts and other materials that run the risk of creating static.  Most non-original packaging I have received has been protective and non-static prone.  I care more about that, than having the original packaging.  Also, I have been able to find most gear manuals I need online.  In fact, I frequently read electronic manuals prior to making a purchase/making an offer/bidding as part of the purchasing decision process. While I enjoy reading hard copies, pdf manuals are indeed handy and usually searchable (for newer gear). New gear completely sealed is definitely a bonus!!  Positive communication with sellers prior to a purchase is usually important for me, although sometimes the listing really just feels totally right. Negative interactions, failure to respond, vague answers, answers that say "read the listing," etc. are deal breakers for me.  Inclusion of all special cables, attachments/parts, sound ROMs, etc. is also usually important. Depending on price, inclusion of midi cables, rack ears, etc. is not critical for me.     

To me these factors are more important than having original packaging and manuals. 

 

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