Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 123 / NOVEMBER 1990 / PAGE 18

Selling Your Computer

I recently bought an ALR powerflex to replace the 6-year-old Texas Instruments Professional Computer I had been using. The TI is still a fully functional 8088 with a 14-inch color monitor and graphics capability. It's still useful, but with the ALR around, the TI is just an oversized paperweight.

I know some people give their old stuff away or donate it to charity. But since my budget allowed only the rock-bottom ALR, I have to at least try to squeeze the price of a few options out of the old TI.

The number of old machines must be growing rapidly. Is there a real market for old equipment, and, if so, where?


Alas, with the rapid advances in computer technology, depreciation is rapid, and it's difficult to get the price you might like for your older computer. But it's certainly not impossible to sell it, and you have a number of options. Remember that plenty of computer users can manage very well with an 8088 machine, especially if they use it primarily for text-based word processing that doesn't make great demands on memory. And such a machine might be great for someone's children to use for homework and games.

If you have access to a modem, a bulletin board system is a great place to advertise your older computer. Computer user groups also bring your offer to the attention of a lot of computer enthusiasts. In some areas of the country, swap meets offer you just the opportunity to make the money you need—if you can avoid the temptation to spend it on other equipment. Don't overlook good old-fashioned cork-and-thumbtack bulletin boards where you work, at the laundromat, in apartment complexes, and at other locations where a lot of people might see an ad. The option that comes to mind most readily but which offers perhaps the least potential is classified advertising.

Whichever options you choose, be realistic about what you can get and start out just a little high to leave room for dickering.

Do you have comments or questions? Send your letter—with your name, address, and daytime phone number—to COMPUTE Feedback, 324 West Wendover Avenue, Greensboro, North Carolina 27408.