Buying used headphones: Yes or No?

OK to buy used headphones?

  • Yes

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gadu

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Recently posted a thread asking for help looking for a mid-tier closed back headphone (Which can be found HERE)
I'll prob be waiting until the Beats Studio3's *gasp* are released to get actual information on them so definitely still welcoming suggestions in the meantime.

In researching headphones I've noticed that, for example, Amazon sells some of these headphones for ~150 cheaper when buying used. It's tempting because then I can afford even better headphones around the price level I'm looking to spend. (or save some money)

Should I be worried about buying used headphones online? Should I be worried about buying used headphones from other people on user marketplaces like Ebay/Forums?
 
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Muinarc

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As long as they take pictures and they don't look beat to hell, buying used gear on these forums or eBay is a pretty good way to save money, headphones are typically pretty hard to break and enthusiasts like you have concentrated here on Head Fi tend to take much better care of their "hobby" items than the general public does. As for used on Amazon, with the counterfeit issues they have, I'd be a little more wary, check the sellers ratings more closely there etc.
 
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buke9

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The last pair of headphones I bought were used. Bought a pair of HD-800's from another Head-Fier here and they were mint and at $680 pretty good bargain also and picked up a Chord Mojo for $360 too so money can be saved and most that sell here are pretty trustworthy and have never been screwed on eBay either.
 
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ProtegeManiac

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If the cost of the used headphone plus new earpads will cost near the price of new with warranty get the new one. Probably better to get from eBay or forums because you can check the condition of the earpads with the seller.

If you're buying refurbished, likely it was opened and returned, so the earpads are still reasonably new. As long as you're getting a warranty then no problem.
 
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Wolfskie

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aside from a few headphones and all IEMs (i don't know, something about the going inside the ear things puts me off from 2nd hand), i bought all of my headphones second hand through head-fi or a local forum and for the most part it turned out as described in the ad and generally in good condition.
i also got away with just washing earpads on most occasions.
just do your research, reading feedback on people is also useful.
 
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cossix

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Just like everybody is saying, make sure the seller has good feedback before buying used. I got my LCD2 used and I saved a ton of money!
 
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geomaso44

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Generally speaking, I definitely recommend buying used. That said, there are for sure exceptions.

Why go used?
  • If you cannot try headphones at meets or in local hi-fi shops, buying (and selling) used is the way to go.
  • If you know you cannot afford buying expensive models new but still want to support others in doing so (by taking their old models from their hands and thus giving them cash to continue spending big :) ).
  • If particular headphone is known as being reliable, with easily available replacement parts or even transferable warranty, no need to buy new at all.
  • If you want to get them as cheap as possible no matter what.
  • ...

Why go new?
  • Some headphones are more prone to defects, therefore warranty for the first year or two can get VERY important to get rid of chronically defective pairs.
  • Some headphones do not have a strong resale value, therefore better to buy new and use return period if needed. (custom-built or extremely expensive ones)
  • Some headphones you want to have customized exactly to your liking. (custom-built models)
  • Some headphones are simply cheap enough not to bother buying used.
  • ...

Most people in headphone hi-fi world are reasonable, never really had a solely negative trading experience with anyone. Even in case of issues, people are usually willing to have a dialogue and find a fair solution for both sides. Scammers and troublemakers are usually easy to distinguish after few message exchanges.
 
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SHAMuuu

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Only worth it if its a rare one i think. Also, best to get new ear pads/ headband, or it should be able to have a headband mod.

In terms of the drivers working perfectly, that risk is always there.

Important to sanitize. :D

The only used i got was a dt100.
 
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George Taylor

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Not sure how many of these were used, but have bought several Amazon warehouse deals, and haven't had a problem yet. EBay has been ok, but my advice is only buy from folks with a long, positive history.
 
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DasKobold

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The problem with used headphones is... or let me put it this way, the problem I have with used headphones is that I don't know if they are broken, or just sound bad in general. I bought some used heaphones in the past (turns out they were broken) and they sounded weird and I had no idea if this was due to the headphones being bad in general or if the pair I got was simply dead. If you know what a certain pair of headphones is supposed to sound like, go for it. But if you buy something new you never tested before than I would not recommend buying used ones.
 
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