10 Old and Outdated Electronic Devices That May Be Worth A Lot (2023)

10 Old and Outdated Electronic Devices That May Be Worth A Lot (1)

When it comes to technology, life spans are short. These days, if you get two years out of a device, that’s a lot, especially when you consider that many of us replace our cell phones every 18 months with the latest and greatest model. Eventually we all become stuck with a pile of old electronics. Many of them get recycled but there are quite a few that get boxed up and stored in the attic or the basement for what is likely an eternity until they are thrown out.

If you’ve got boxes of old electronics stored somewhere in your home, you may want to take them out now. Why? Because some older computers, gaming consoles, and handheld devices have been fetching quite a lot of money on eBay and through other auctions as of late. While many can bring in $50 or $100, some extremely rare or significant electronics can command thousands of dollars.

Check those old boxes because here are ten old electronic devices that may be worth a lot of money.

1. Apple I

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Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak made only 200 of their first Apple computers back in 1976, and most were sold to computer hobbyists around the San Francisco Bay area for the asking price of $666.66. The model was replaced with a much slicker Apple II within two years, and the original Apples were suddenly obsolete. We don’t know what happened to many of them, but the ones that are still in existence command a high price, especially if they’re still operational. How much? In October 2014, Henry Ford paid over $900,000 for an Apple I, and the next month, one was sold at a Christie’s auction for $365,000.

2. Original 128k Macintosh

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In 1984, Apple released their original Macintosh to great fanfare. For the exorbitant price of $2,495 (over $5,000 in today’s money), the cute all-in-one computer could be yours. Today, you can procure one for less than that, but you’ll still shell out around $1,000 for one in decent working condition — or more. In 2014, one was sold on eBay for $1,598. And here’s a fun bonus fact: all early Macs have the signatures of the Apple team embossed on the inside of the case.

3. iPod Classic

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It was the device that really ushered in the digital music revolution, but within ten or so years, the original iPod was discontinued in favor of the touchscreen models based on the iPhone. However, the demand for this classic device is still high, and original iPods have been commanding impressive prices on eBay. The sixth generation devices with the big 160GB hard drives are going for $300 or $400, which is about what they cost when they were brand new.

4. Atari VCS

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Before it was called the Atari 2600, it was called the Atari VCS, or video computer system. If you got one of these early generation machines from 1980-1982 and still own it, you’re in luck: they’re going for around $100 on eBay. And if you’ve got some games to go with it, you’ll pull in even more depending on which titles you can offer. Air Raid is the most expensive, with one selling for over $30,000 a few years ago, while ET is the most interesting in that it is widely considered one of the worst games for the console. A few years ago, a massive collection of ET games was dug out of a landfill in New Mexico, so owning one is like owning a fun bit of video game history.

5. APF Imagination Machine

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This late 1970s home computer and video game console may not have been as popular as, say, the Atari or the Commodore 64, but it was appealing at the time because of its innovative features and expandability. They don’t come up for sale on eBay all that often, but when they do, they go for a surprisingly high price. Expect to pay at least several hundred dollars or more In 2013, one was sold on the auction site for $999 — that’s almost $300 more than its original 1979 asking price.

6. Sony TPS-L2 Walkman

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If you were alive in the 1980s, the Sony Walkman was probably a big part of your life. The first model of this groundbreaking technology was the TPS-L2, and it allowed people to play their own personal soundtrack anywhere and anytime; its portability meant that you never had to go anywhere without your favorite tunes. These days, of course, we carry thousands of songs in our pockets, but back then, we had to deal with cassettes. If you’re hoping to go for a more retro sound, working Sony TPS-L2 Walkman models can be found on eBay, but they cost quite a bit. Average asking price is around $350, with some sellers wanting at least $700 for devices in pristine condition.

7. Hewlett Packard HP-01 Watch

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This original calculator watch was expensive when it was first released in 1977, with asking prices ranging from $450 to $850, depending on whether you went with the steel or gold versions. It was the first time a calculator could go on the wrist, and it was also one of the first devices to come with its own stylus, since the buttons were so tiny. These days, the caliber of this technology is equivalent to something that might come as a prize in a cereal box, but that hasn’t stopped collectors from paying exorbitant amounts for an original HP-01. Average asking price on eBay is between $1000 and $4000, and one in mint condition was up for sale in 2014 for $14,000.

8. Texas Instruments Speak & Spell

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Back in the early 1980s, it taught us how to spell tricky words like “rhythm” and “bureau.” Now it’s a relic of a simpler time, a fun reminder of Generation X childhood, and also a popular collector’s item. The Texas Instruments Speak & Spell cost $50 in 1978, which is almost $200 in today’s dollars. These days, a working Speak & Spell can be found on eBay for anywhere from $30 to well over $100 if it’s in really good shape. There’s even a market for Speak & Spell parts, and broken models can even bring in $10 or $15.

9. Original Mario Kart 64 Cartridge

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There’s definitely a market for used video games, but some titles command higher prices than others. One of the more valuable used titles is Mario Kart, but it has to be the original cartridge for the Nintendo 64. Whether it’s the fun yet challenging game play or the nostalgia that many gamers feel when they think about this late ‘90s game, a cartridge in good shape can sell for as much as $75. And, if it’s brand new and still sealed in the original box, you might get as much as $300.

10. Bakelite Phones

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You might need to go to grandma’s house to unearth one of these. The Ericsson DBH 1001 rotary telephone of the mid-20th Century, usually just called a Bakelite phone after the ubiquitous polymer material of its body, could be found in just about every home. In fact, when you ask most older folks to think of a phone, a picture of this device is probably what pops into their heads. These days, fans of retro chic and collectors of vintage electronics will pay good money for a Bakelite phone. Well-used models go for $30 or more on eBay, while phones in really good shape command $125 or more.


What's the oldest electronic device? ›

The first electronic device ever invented is the relay, a remote switch controlled by electricity that was invented in 1835 by Joseph Henry, an American scientist, although it is also claimed that the English inventor Edward Davy "certainly invented the electric relay" in his electric telegraph.

What electronic devices are used the most? ›

The latest data shows that in the United States, smartphones are currently the most popular devices among consumers, with 96.1 percent of them owning the device.

What are the electronic devices that we use everyday? ›

Home appliances such as refrigerators, a/c, washing machine, vacuum cleaner, microwave oven, etc. Audio and Video Systems like headphones, DVD players, VCRs, microphones, colour TVs, loudspeakers, video game consoles, etc.

What old electronics have the most gold? ›

Old camcorders – the bigger the better. Early digital still cameras – again, the bigger the better. Big old desktop computers and peripheral devices like modems and scanners. Old televisions – some old pre-flatscreen large living room models can contain gold that is worth $5.00 or more.

What is the name of first electronic device? ›

ENIAC, in full Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer, the first programmable general-purpose electronic digital computer, built during World War II by the United States. American physicist John Mauchly, American engineer J.

What were the first electrical devices? ›

The first electric iron was invented in 1882 by Henry Seeley. The first electric kettle was made in 1891. The electric light bulb was invented by Joseph Swan in 1878. As early as 1837 Thomas Davenport made an electric motor.

What technology was invented in the 70s? ›

During the 70s, consumer technology was becoming more and more compact. It would seem that the height of portable entertainment at the time was the invention of the Sony Walkman. With the release of the first-gen Walkman (the Walkman TPS-L2) music-lovers could enjoy tunes on cassette wherever they wanted.

What's the most used device? ›

Main findings
  • Cell phones are by far the most popular device among American adults, especially for adults under the age of 65. ...
  • Desktop computers are most popular with adults ages 35-65, with 69% of Gen X, 65% of Younger Boomers and 64% of Older Boomers owning these devices.
3 Feb 2011

What devices will be popular in the future? ›

22 Tech Gadgets Our Grandchildren May Be Using in the Future
  • A 3D pen. © lixpen / instagram.
  • A speaker that allows you to touch music. ...
  • An Instagram-focused camera. ...
  • A circular shower. ...
  • A machine that folds your laundry. ...
  • A robot suitcase. ...
  • The pen printer. ...
  • A device that can levitate jewelry and other small things.

Can you name some electronic devices? ›

In addition to computers, they include mobile phones, TV remotes, DVD and CD players, and digital cameras, to name just a few. Q: Can you think of other electronic devices that you use?

How many electronic devices are there? ›

In 2021, the number of mobile devices operating worldwide stood at almost 15 billion, up from just over 14 billion in the previous year. The number of mobile devices is expected to reach 18.22 billion by 2025, an increase of 4.2 billion devices compared to 2020 levels.

What is the most popular device used in a computer? ›

Keyboard. Keyboard is the most common and very popular input device which helps to input data to the computer. The layout of the keyboard is like that of traditional typewriter, although there are some additional keys provided for performing additional functions.

What electronics have a lot of gold? ›

Today, we'd like to give you a checklist of other easily overlooked electronic devices that contain gold too:
  • Remotes of All Kinds. ...
  • Old Stereo Components. ...
  • VCRs, CD Players and DVD players. ...
  • Older CB, Ham, and Shortwave Radios. ...
  • Two Ways to Collect Quantities of these Devices to Recycle.
21 Jul 2014

Are old circuit boards worth anything? ›

The circuit boards found inside a single newer laptop can contain gold worth between $15.00 and $25.00. That's not as much gold as you can typically find in a big old laptop, but it is hardly chump change - especially if you can get your hands on 50, 100 or 500 of them. Don't overlook tablets either.

How do you get gold out of old electronics? ›

  1. Collect your scraps. In phones, most of the gold is in the SIM card, the main board and the smaller components on the back of the LCD screen. ...
  2. Strip out the boards. Place your circuit boards in a glass vessel. ...
  3. Collect the flakes. Pour the mixture through a coffee filter and into another glass container. ...
  4. Melt the gold.
7 Mar 2014

What electronics have platinum in them? ›

Platinum is used to make fiberglass, liquid-crystal display (LCD) glass and flat-panel displays, and cathode ray tubes.

What household items contain gold? ›

The processors and connectors in computers, tablets, and smartphones use gold. You can also find gold in televisions, gaming consoles, printers, or essentially anything electronic.

How do you extract palladium from electronics? ›

Palladium is employed as an electrode material in multi-layer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs). These components can be easily removed from PCBs by de-soldering. As palladium is alloyed with silver, its dissolution is readily achieved using dilute nitric acid.

What was the first electronic component? ›

Vacuum tubes (Thermionic valves) were the first active electronic components which controlled current flow by influencing the flow of individual electrons, They were responsible for the electronics revolution of the first half of the twentieth century, They enabled the construction of equipment that used current ...

What was the first piece of technology? ›

Made nearly two million years ago, stone tools such as this are the first known technological invention. This chopping tool and others like it are the oldest objects in the British Museum.

What is electronics and example? ›

Electronics is defined as devices run by electric power or the field of studying such items. An example of electronics are radios, computers, and televisions. noun. 8. Electronic devices and systems.

What is the most useful invention in household items? ›

But while most people take washers and refrigerators for granted today, a century ago, these machines revolutionized people's daily lives. The introduction of running water and electricity set the stage for sweeping social and cultural changes by making possible labor-saving devices to tackle routine household chores.

What electrical appliances that did not exist in the old days? ›

20 Home Appliances That Didn't Exist When You Were Young
  • Smart TVs. Just a few decades ago, TVs still had knobs on them. ...
  • Bluetooth Speakers. ...
  • Induction Stoves. ...
  • Mini-Split Air Conditioners. ...
  • Robot Vacuum. ...
  • Wireless Alarm Systems. ...
  • Amazon Echo. ...
  • Smarthome Systems.
20 Apr 2018

What was invented in 1967? ›

1967: Handheld calculator

Texas Instruments invented the first electronic handheld calculator in 1967.

Is TV an electronic device? ›

Short for television, a TV or telly is an electronics device that receives a visual and audio signal and plays it for the viewer.

What are the electronic products? ›

Electronic Products means computer monitors, televisions, computers (mainframe, desktop and laptop computers); and cell phones. Electronic Products . Electronic Products" shall mean software products made available via electronic media.

Is fridge an electronic device? ›

Electric ovens, refrigerators, air conditioners, and electric space heaters are examples of electrical appliances. Computers, smartphones, mp3 players, radios, and cameras are examples of electronic appliances.

What's the most popular electronic? ›

According to recent data, mobile phones top the list of the most popular electronics, worldwide. In 2022, pretty much all (96.2%) consumers own a mobile phone.

What are the devices that were very helpful to you before that are not used anymore today? ›

20 Once-Useful Technologies You Never See Anymore
  • Mp3 Players. The Walkman was replaced by the Discman, and as CDs were phased out by digital music, people abandoned their Discman for Mp3 players. ...
  • Typewriters. ...
  • Dial-Up. ...
  • The Apple Newton. ...
  • Digital Audio Tape. ...
  • Pay Phones. ...
  • 411. ...
  • Hard Disk Drives.
14 Jun 2018

What devices do Millennials use? ›

Smartphones are ranked as the most owned devices by millennials with a rate of 97%. PC / Laptops are ranked as the second most owned device by millennials with a rate of 75%. Tablet devices come next with a rate of 38%.

What technology will be like in the next 10 years? ›

The advances in technologies such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), extended reality (XR), and digital multiple experiences (DMX) are coming together to form a parallel virtual verse where avatars could exist as a digital twin of any individual.

What inventions do you hope to have in 20 years? ›

Self-driving vehicles could be ubiquitous in the next 10 years. 3D-printing could be used to construct more houses in 20 years. People could start using robots to do work around their house and provide companionship starting in 2030. We could live in a Matrix-like virtual world by 2045.

Which technology is booming now? ›

Artificial intelligence will become more prevalent in 2022 with natural language processing and machine learning advancement. Artificial intelligence can better understand us and perform more complex tasks using this technology. It is estimated that 5G will revolutionize the way we live and work in the future.

What Old computers are worth money? ›

Costlier than a house: list of the most expensive computers of the vintage era
  • Programma 101 (1965) $26,300. ...
  • HP 3000 (1972) $607,000. ...
  • IBM 5100 (1975) $54,600 – $109,200. ...
  • Cromemco System Three (1979) $22,000 - $34,500. ...
  • Apple Lisa (1983) $25,970. ...
  • AGAT-4 (1984) $17,000. ...
  • Compaq Portable II (1986) $8,500 - $12,180.
28 Sept 2021

How can I make money with old electronics? ›

How to Get Paid Recycling Your Old Electronics
  1. Gizmogo. Gizmogo is committed to keeping used electronics out of landfills. ...
  2. GreenBuyback. GreenBuyback accepts devices in any condition. ...
  3. SellBroke. SellBroke accepts desktops, laptops, and tablets in any condition. ...
  4. Decluttr. ...
  5. ecoATM. ...
  6. Amazon. ...
  7. Best Buy. ...
  8. Apple Stores.
21 Oct 2021

What can I do with old electronic gadgets? ›

How to recycle or reuse old gadgets
  • 1.Sell. Before you decide to throw away your old products, why not try to make some money off them first? ...
  • 2.Donate.
  • 3.Repurpose. ...
  • 4.Return. ...
  • 5.Recycle.
  • These days stores like Croma and Reliance Digital also have drop-boxes at the payment counters, which promote responsible recycling.
30 May 2021

What old technologies have been replaced? ›

List of obsolete technology
Obsolete technologyReplacement
Dial-up Internet accessBroadband Internet
LaserDiscCompact disks, DVDs, and Blu-ray
Overhead projector and slide projectorVideo projector
Phonograph and phonograph recordAudio cassette, 8 track tape, compact disc, MP3
65 more rows

Are old monitors worth anything? ›

It depends. Depending on the age, size, and condition, an old 4K monitor could be worth $10-$30. Monitors with lower than 1080p resolution might be worth only a couple of dollars. High-end gaming monitors, however, can be pretty valuable.

How much is a computer tower worth in scrap? ›

U.S.A. Scrap Dealer National Price Index
Average PriceHigh PriceLow Price
0.11 USD/LB0.2 USD/LB0.06 USD/LB

Is it worth scrapping computers for gold? ›

The boards from 100 computers could yield as much as $3,000 worth of gold. And you might be able to get older computers for free, just by offering to haul them away. The circuit boards found inside a single newer laptop can contain gold worth between $15.00 and $25.00.

Can I sell a broken monitor? ›

Can I sell a broken Monitor? There's absolutely nothing wrong with selling a broken or water-damaged monitor. Buyback Boss will make a custom cash offer and buy it from you!

What can you do with old tablets and laptops? ›

Once that's done, here are your options.
  1. Take It to a Recycler. Plenty of nonprofit organizations and local communities offer options to help you recycle old electronics. ...
  2. Donate It. ...
  3. Take It to a Tech Firm. ...
  4. 5 Things to Always Recycle.
19 Apr 2021

Is electronic recycling profitable? ›

Recycling electronic waste is a potentially profitable business for those who are willing to invest in the necessary equipment and learn how to effectively process the recycling process.

What do you do with old amplifiers? ›

Donate your stereo amplifier to them or sell it at a price they cannot refuse. Electronic recycling organizations and thrift stores may also be interested in donated stereo amplifiers. This can be a good last option if you have no other way of disposing of your equipment.

What can I do with old iPad and phone? ›

Cookbook, reader, security camera: Here are 10 creative uses for an old iPad or iPhone
  1. Make it a car dashcam. ...
  2. Make it a reader. ...
  3. Turn it into a security cam. ...
  4. Use it to stay connected. ...
  5. See your favorite memories. ...
  6. Control your TV. ...
  7. Organize and play your music. ...
  8. Make it your kitchen companion.
25 May 2020

Does Best Buy recycle electronics? ›

We make it easy to recycle all kinds of used tech — from cameras and cellphones to robot vacuums and speakers. Regardless of where you bought it, how old it is or who made it, you can bring your tech to any Best Buy store to have it recycled. You can also make the most out of your old tech with our trade-in program.

What will be obsolete in 10 years? ›

Older technology like landline phones, USB drives, alarm locks, and more will likely become obsolete in the next 10 years. Eco-friendly changes in the manner technology is created will likely render one-use plastic products and incandescent light bulbs useless in the coming decade.

What things are not used anymore? ›

20 Once-Useful Technologies You Never See Anymore
  • Mp3 Players. The Walkman was replaced by the Discman, and as CDs were phased out by digital music, people abandoned their Discman for Mp3 players. ...
  • Typewriters. ...
  • Dial-Up. ...
  • The Apple Newton. ...
  • Digital Audio Tape. ...
  • Pay Phones. ...
  • 411. ...
  • Hard Disk Drives.
14 Jun 2018

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