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Used Hardware Purchaser’s Club

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#1
I searched and could not find one, but I thought it might be fun to make a club that discusses used hardware purchases. I think the question often arises on the reliability of buying used—how good is it, and how long does it last? The key here is that you bought the item for regular use (daily driver), and offer feedback on that item’s success or failure. Recycling at its finest!

For me, I purchased a used Sapphire Nitro+ RX 480 8GB back in early December 2018 for $120. So far, it has run flawlessly—it even runs well undervolted. Still in service today with no problems. I’ll update the thread if its status changes.

In the past, I’ve also purchased used Xeon’s: X5670, X5677, and W3680 for running in classic Mac Pros that worked perfectly during ownership. I’ve since sold all of those off to other buyers. Speaking of Mac Pro, I bought a used 4,1 MP for $350 that I flashed to 5,1, ran for a year, then resold for $350. Same was true for an MSI Radeon 7870–which I actually bought used for $75 and resold for $125, thanks to the mining craze. In other words, I’ve had good personal success buying used, but I don’t have the biggest sample size, so I was curious what other users have to say about their experiences.
 
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#2
I feel this is a fantastic idea!

While the majority of Tech forums doesn't offer this, a few does (notably AnandTech), although requires dedicated moderation. Another noteworthy aspect, a bad seller, no matter how long (s)he has been a member, can lose access (suspension) if the deal isn't made right, or permanently banned. Of course, this is where things gets sticky. Would TechPowerUp want to get into this, we know that while most members will be honest (just as on eBay), there'll be a few bad apples, regardless of membership length. However, the newer the member, the higher chance of selling garbage (just as on eBay).

That stated, I love the idea, however it's up to the buyer to research the potential purchase & if in doubt, ask questions & document answers (print of take screenshots of PM's). Also, would require a payment setup, with PayPal being the best, as they can offer protection for buyers beyond what a Moderator could do. That is, if PayPal gets into this type of thing. More likely, it'll be sending money to the Seller with a small percentage taken from Buyer, the latter would have to make the adjustment to ensure the Buyer gets the price asked for.

A second option is either a USPS (or similar) money order or Western Union payment. The latter costs more, however the money is available to the Seller in minutes & can ship same day, or when shipping services are open. Large items should be sent by UPS or FedEx, as USPS prices are high, whereas smaller items (such as RAM) are best sent by USPS Priority Mail insured.

There's a lot if 'if's' here, yet I feel this can be worked out, that is (one again), if TechPowerUp is interested. This could be a way for members to deal with others they trust, rather than blindly purchasing from eBay or (higher cost) Amazon sellers.

I've found a lot of deals on perfectly working used replacement parts for upgrades & the repair of damaged computers, for myself & others on eBay. Yet I have to take the time, every time, to ask questions before purchase. While I did get a few of bad deals, communication with the seller resolved a couple, there were two more as a young eBayer were they had to step in & refund (sellers sold me counterfeit copies of XP Pro). I don't feel we should be selling such software here, components, complete computers & related accessories only with a minimum of 30 day warranty, or if allowed, transfer warranty to the buyer after (s)he sees the deal is good. Example, SquareTrade warranties on items can be transferred at no cost & if the item is covered, should be.

We'll see what happens soon, I presume.:)

Cat
 
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#3
I am a big believer in used components.

Most of the components in my main computer are used (soon to change). I got the CPU, mobo, and my old GTX 780 from one of my dad's friends around the end of 2015 and beginning of 2016. I bought my GTX 1070 from a friend back in August 2018. The CPU struggles to get past 4.3GHz, but the 1070 has no problem passing 2GHz.

My secondary and tertiary monitors are used 19" Dell 5:4 monitors I found at thrift stores. The amplifier, satellite speakers, and subwoofer in my sound system were all bought at thrift stores. Even my desk and computer chair were bought second hand.


My first proper "gaming" PC started as an HP DC5800 I found at a yard sale back in November 2015. It had a Core 2 Quad Q6600 and 8GB of DDR2-800 and played games around the level of a PS4 with a 750 Ti I grabbed for $100. That computer still works perfectly, and currently has a Q9550 and the 780 in it.
 
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#4
I feel this is a fantastic idea!

While the majority of Tech forums doesn't offer this, a few does (notably AnandTech), although requires dedicated moderation. Another noteworthy aspect, a bad seller, no matter how long (s)he has been a member, can lose access (suspension) if the deal isn't made right, or permanently banned. Of course, this is where things gets sticky. Would TechPowerUp want to get into this, we know that while most members will be honest (just as on eBay), there'll be a few bad apples, regardless of membership length. However, the newer the member, the higher chance of selling garbage (just as on eBay).

That stated, I love the idea, however it's up to the buyer to research the potential purchase & if in doubt, ask questions & document answers (print of take screenshots of PM's). Also, would require a payment setup, with PayPal being the best, as they can offer protection for buyers beyond what a Moderator could do. That is, if PayPal gets into this type of thing. More likely, it'll be sending money to the Seller with a small percentage taken from Buyer, the latter would have to make the adjustment to ensure the Buyer gets the price asked for.

A second option is either a USPS (or similar) money order or Western Union payment. The latter costs more, however the money is available to the Seller in minutes & can ship same day, or when shipping services are open. Large items should be sent by UPS or FedEx, as USPS prices are high, whereas smaller items (such as RAM) are best sent by USPS Priority Mail insured.

There's a lot if 'if's' here, yet I feel this can be worked out, that is (one again), if TechPowerUp is interested. This could be a way for members to deal with others they trust, rather than blindly purchasing from eBay or (higher cost) Amazon sellers.

I've found a lot of deals on perfectly working used replacement parts for upgrades & the repair of damaged computers, for myself & others on eBay. Yet I have to take the time, every time, to ask questions before purchase. While I did get a few of bad deals, communication with the seller resolved a couple, there were two more as a young eBayer were they had to step in & refund (sellers sold me counterfeit copies of XP Pro). I don't feel we should be selling such software here, components, complete computers & related accessories only with a minimum of 30 day warranty, or if allowed, transfer warranty to the buyer after (s)he sees the deal is good. Example, SquareTrade warranties on items can be transferred at no cost & if the item is covered, should be.

We'll see what happens soon, I presume.:)

Cat
I believe such a “for sale” forum already exists at TPU. This thread is more to discuss our experiences of “buying used.” Was it worth it?
 
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#5
Yeah
We already have a for sale section, which is monitored and has rules that need to be followed. Most use paypal and a feedback system...
 
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#7
I've bought used GPU's for quite some time now, the last new one I bought would have been a HD 7950 and since then have had GTX 570, GTX 670, 780 Ti, 290, 290x and my current RX 580 all of which had been bought "used" the only one I've ever had any issue with was the GTX 570 which I baked and "fixed" . I have no issues buying recertified or mfr refurbished from a retailer either as such my barracuda 1TB was a refurb as was my Corsair VS550w both of which costing about a total of $60> Buying used makes good sense most of the time as similar to new cars components lose most of their value win the first 2 years, not so good for the new buyer but great for people who want to buy used tech.
 

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#8
My 1080ti is pre-owned
 
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#9
I like the idea, bringing in experiences from many sources helps to statistically draw a bigger picture of the topic.

Thing is, I don´t buy used hardware for my daily build because I feel like I can´t trust most people. You can never know the real history of a part. But when I buy used I never had something fail on me after purchase. Hell my amp is from the 70s and works perfect.
Electronics can last a long time if treated right. The biggest concern I felt with buying used is that things might be missing the original packaging and get damaged in shipping. This has happened to me several times now. For example someone send me 2 GPUs and stacked them bare on top of each other so they shaved off the SMDs on their backs :(

I have however recently build a complete system with used parts as a sort of nostalgia + dream config of mine. I do use that daily now too for gaming, the used parts are all 10 years old or more. Xeon 5470, XFX 780i mainboard, 2x GTX295s with original waterblocks for liquid cooling. So far everything is working, overclocked all parts too. If they fail on me soon I can report back :)

Maybe keep that as a perspective if you consider buying a used 2-3 year old part, many parts from over a decade ago still work fine today. It all depends on their individual history and maintenance which brings us back to trusting the seller.
 
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#10
Please accept my apologies in regards to my post above (#2).:)

As a human, am imperfect, didn't read the OP's post closely & misunderstood badly.

However for the record, I do buy a lot of used hardware, for the most part, have been satisfied. Like with this GTX 670 which came in the mail today, have ran for over 3 hours, seems to be running great so far. This is how I keep my older rigs upgraded, will have to check out the component selection here at TPU for potential future purchases.:toast:

Cat
 
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#11
Good idea for a thread.

After the 1st crypto boom, I purchased used 2x 290x Radeon mining cards for something like $250 each. They worked great, then I sold them during the second boom for over $300 each, and parted out my second system, finally ended up with a new Vega 64.

I've purchased several used PSUs here with good luck and a few x58 MBs with mixed success. An x58 board with a Xeon X5600 series CPU is a great inexpensive machine with quite a bit of horsepower.
 
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#13
I've bought a few mining cards GTX 1060 and use them on a gaming rig with success. Used C2D board for $20 and put a used C2Q E9550 and run Linux on it. Great little machine.
One thing I wont buy used are drives. SSD yes. I was also given a Nvidia 8800GTX that works fine
 
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#14
Usually I avoid buying used hardware for myself, unless for some reason I'm upgrading an old machine where you cannot find new hardware or where you can find at beyond ridiculous price tags. There can be found used hardware in good condition, but you also have to be lucky to get one. Over here hardly anyone will mention, for the example, that their GPU was used for mining, because they know that people will either ask for a lower price or wouldn't be interested at all.

That being said, I bought a few used things. First I bought Transcend (I think) DDR2 RAM in the past to upgrade my PC. It worked flawlessly. Then 2x4GB Hynix DDR3 1333 in very good condition for my laptop. They worked OK, except few blue screens because motherboard officially supported 1066 MHz, so I sold them a year after. After that I bought used Core 2 Duo T9900 and 2x4GB Hynix DDR3 1066, both used and in excellent condition. Soon after I bought used fan and used subwoofer for that laptop. Fan was seriously damaged and the damage didn't occur in the transit. At first seller refused to respond, but then I sent them unboxing video with proof and threatened with opening a case if they don't respond within 48 hours and refund me in full or send another fan without any flaws or damages at their own cost. Finally we agreed for the second option and I received another fan which was in very good condition. The thing is that I always ask sellers to check the goods for any flaws or damages prior to shipping and notify me about them.

A few months ago I bought almost the entire system. Everything except HDD, case, cooler, keyboard, mouse and mouse pad was used. The PC was for one of my distant relatives who was on a very tight budget. I assembled the system, tested it and it worked like a charm. If I remember correctly, I bought CPU, MOBO, RAM and GPU from one seller on ebay, while other things were bought on the local online flea market from various sellers and the new stuff in one PC store. The components were: Intel Xeon E3 1240, Arctic Freezer 33 (new), Asrock H61M DGS, 8 GB (2x4GB) Kingston DDR3 1333, Powercolor R9 270X 2GB, Adata S510 120 GB SSD, Toshiba P300 1TB HDD (new), Coolermaster B600 PSU, Zalman S3 case (new), Acer 22" FHD monitor, some 2.0 speakers, Genius KB 110X keyboard (new), Trust GTX 101 mouse (new). Monitor had one big scratch on the back, something that the seller didn't mention, but besides that monitor was almost perfect.
 
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#15
One of the best things I got used more recently was 24gb (8gb x 3) of ddr3 sodimm samsung ram at just £30 for all the three modules, very cheap and I brought them home tested them thoroughly and they're working very well, would've costed far more to buy them elsewhere
 
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#16
- MSI GTX 770 > 2nd hand 1 year post-release, used for 1 year, resold at -20 EUR loss, perfect condition & performance (Bought for 180 EUR, sold for 160 EUR)
- Gigabyte GTX 780ti > 2nd hand 2 years post release, used for 2 years, resold at -40 EUR loss. Decent condition, thermal performance was degrading slowly near the end of my ownership. Sold after thorough cleaning (but no removal of cooler). (Bought for 240 EUR, sold for 200 EUR)

Haven't bought any 2nd hand CPUs but I consider that viable as much as GPUs, but only if you are buying into significant performance jumps. As you can see from my 2nd hand GPU experience, its good business and very cheap gaming. As the performance rises, price for the same performance drops, but second hand cards always keep a psychological value 'baseline' if you will. It takes quite some time for a decent high end GPU to drop below the 150 EUR mark, because they stay so consistent over time wrt performance. If you keep investing that money towards a new upgrade, the bottom line is pretty sweet. The key however is timing.
 
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#17
Most of the hardware I buy is used, can't list all of it though since it's roughly 100+ CPU's, 30+ GPU's, 25+ Mobo's & 50+ sticks of SDR/DDR/DDR2/DDR3/DDR4 Ram. :p
 

FreedomEclipse

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#18
Oh, and my soundsystem is pre-owned. Everything apart from cables and subwoofer and center speaker.

JBL Control ONE bookshelf speakers (x4 - all preowned - I actually have another 2 of these but the speakers on them are blown and im waiting for repairs)
Yamaha VX-V375
 
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#19
Nice thread!!! I have offended people (I think) preaching about how good Hp z420's and Z400's are for peeps
on a tight budget. I sold all my z77's, Z87's and z97's last year and built everything around x79 an x58 platforms.
People don't realize you can build a whole rig for at times the price of 1 mid-high end component that is new.
If you don't care about 4k gaming and just want to play but don't many beans....I would look into these used workstations
and just add an SSD , mid-range video card & a upgraded CPU. ...

My only caution; don't spend too much for used right now....I'd like to see where the AMD and Intel core wars take us.
if it gets crazy...we could be looking at 16 core 5GZ+ soon....
....know the value and beware what others are charging.

Here is one:
$160 plus $25 Shipping
https://www.ebay.com/itm/HP-Z420-Workstation-Workstation-3-0GHz-QuadXeon-E5-1607-v2-8gb-DDR3-DVD-RW/382854829437?hash=item5923ed157d:g:Uv4AAOSwHDdck-sN&LH_BIN=1

CPU upgrade $95
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Intel-Xeon...645708?hash=item364a87c4cc:g:6xsAAOSwkeBbaJL1

GPU upgrade (new) $169.99
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814137256

SSD upgrade (new) $32
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820242400

HD (refurbish) $40
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA5AD3RB7218

Total $522......
 
Last edited:
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#20
Nice thread!!! I have offended people (I think) preaching about how good Hp z420's and Z400's are for peeps
on a tight budget. I sold all my z77's, Z87's and z97's last year and built everything around x79 an x58 platforms.
People don't realize you can build a whole rig for at times the price of 1 mid-high end component that is new.
If you don't care about 4k gaming and just want to play but don't many beans....I would look into these used workstations
and just add an SSD , mid-range video card & a upgraded CPU. ...

My only caution; don't spend too much for used right now....I'd like to see where the AMD and Intel core wars take us.
if it gets crazy...we could be looking at 16 core 5GZ+ soon....
....know the value and beware what others are charging.

Here is one:
$160 plus $25 Shipping
https://www.ebay.com/itm/HP-Z420-Workstation-Workstation-3-0GHz-QuadXeon-E5-1607-v2-8gb-DDR3-DVD-RW/382854829437?hash=item5923ed157d:g:Uv4AAOSwHDdck-sN&LH_BIN=1

CPU upgrade $95
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Intel-Xeon...645708?hash=item364a87c4cc:g:6xsAAOSwkeBbaJL1

GPU upgrade (new) $169.99
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814137256

SSD upgrade (new) $32
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820242400

HD (refurbish) $40
https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA5AD3RB7218

Total $522......
That’s pretty awesome. It’s like buying the old 4,1 Mac Pro, flashing it to a 5,1, dropping hex-Xeons in it and installing the latest MacOS. Other than limited PCIe bandwidth, they are still quite good at most tasks.
 
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#21
Count me in, never bought brand new parts to build since i scammed...
 
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#22
Yes!! I also have a 4,1 flashed to 5,1 and 1x5680...It's on OS 10.13.6
pretty stable, and quick enough most things.
 

M0rafic

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#23
Buying used has its benefits quite apart from the obvious cost/performance ones. From decades looking after tech ranging from IBM 360 series mainframes to the present day, I have learnt two things. The first is that "mature" kit can often provide performance beyond that which might be expected with the application of a little imagination. Also there is a wealth of experience out there to be tapped to get the best out of it. Conversely kit on the bleeding edge invariably fails to deliver, it may be good but falls short of the hype in the real world. Drivers and firmware are often buggy and rushed to market and it may take a year to get the combination of reliable hardware,firmware and software that you thought you were buying in the first place.
 
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#24
I love it!!
What I do/have done,not so much anymore, (I'm 72 now). I found one particular independent computer shop that had a big box full (literally) of old computers from customers who bought new ones. Shop would remove hdd's & toss the rest. They had someone who periodically come in & remove the stuff for recycling. Just not often enough. The shop told me I could have whatever I wanted! Good cases, (I tested->) psu's, (I kept only good & more than 500w), ram ddr-ddr2-ddr3, I have boxes of cpus, the best(?) was cd/dvdroms. people would attempt to fix at home by replacing cdroms, & then getting new comps 'cause that was not the problem. I have "new" ide cdroms, 6-7 years old but only used for 1-2 months, or less. Same with sata cdroms. With these in older mobos (with ide & sata ports, I can have 4 sata hdds, (most older mobos have 4 sata ports) IDE only, recycle! only 2 sata's, recycle! I bought 'lots' of hdd's (eg, 'lot of 10 hdds'), mostly WD satas for $5± each. This shop used to wipe ide hdds & give 'em to me, no more. I have assembled many comps for near nothing, never sold 'em, gave 'em away. Some of 'em had mobo driver disks stored inside the case, score! Have many different flavors of linux comps, XP & I especially love XP-64.

Stuff is out there, just gotta look, , , , ,

-c-
 

Kursah

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Processor R7 2700X @ Stock (3.7/4.35) w/PBO+XFR2 | i7 3770 3.4/3.9 Stock | i7 4770 3.4/3.9 Stock
Motherboard Asus ROG Strix X370-F Gaming | Intel DQ77MK | SuperMicro X10SLQ
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#25
Pretty much everything in my builds sans PSU's is purchased used. My current build, the AMD CPU, Asus board, and G.Skill RAM I purchased used from another member last November, the rest of it carried over from my previous build.

My boys' PC's which I built up as XMas presents (big xmas presents) was all used except for PSU's...there was an excellent sale on EVGA PSU's at the end of last year...made no sense to go otherwise at the prices they were offering for fully warrantied PSU's. But the CPU's are from my old build and old server build, GPU's off of forums, RAM is re-used or purchased on forums, etc.

One of my favorite used purchases is my 980Ti, while it is a MSI 6G LE, so it doesn't overclock up to 1500 like many, it performs great...and actually still at stock speeds. I picked it up for $350 when they were going for $600+, a friend of mine had three and realized he only needed 2 for his games in SLI. Was a helluva deal over 3 years ago now! I'm also pretty happy with my AMD Ryzen 2700X build which the main parts I purchased last year will become a server...waiting for more boards with some of the OOB management stuff I want. ASRock has something coming down the pipe, now to wait a few years for them to be resold as used. :D
 
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