Selling Your Used CDs Online in Canada

Later this month, we’re going to put our apartment up for sale. Subsequently, we’re leaving the country for six months, taking only a couple of suitcases. We’re dispensing with a bunch of stuff, and leaving the remainder in storage.

On the CD front, we’re going all digital. I’ve already signed up to MP3Tunes, an online backup system and streaming server. Seeing no need for all that plastic, we’re ready to sell the 180 CDs we’ve acquired over the past 20 years.

We’re going to avail of our only friend who has a lawn and hold a yard sale. However, I’m not sure that’s an effecient way of getting rid of our music. We’ll only sell some of them, and there will be plenty of tedious bargaining over pennies.

So, I’m looking at a couple of online services that will buy used CDs from Canadians. Basically, you enter all your CDs into their system, they tell you what they’ll pay for them, and send you the packaging to ship them off. The two I’ve found thus far are Cash for CDs and SecondSpin. Judging from a small sample group I tried, we should make about US $2 a CD. Not great, but better than any other alternative, I think.

Have you ever used one of these online services? What’s your experience been?


  1. Delicious Library on Mac OS X will scan the barcode on your CDs and let you sell them through Amazon. It’s also nice to know what you have before a) you pack it away or b) sell them off. I was surprised at what I had and hadn’t ripped.

  2. It’s a gray area, legally, thanks to the private copying law.

    Ignored, yes, but victimless is a bit murkier. If you acknowledge that it’s illegal, then you’re clearly violating the rights of the copyright owners, and at least theoretically (or maybe very non-theoretically, given the circumstance) either eliminating a primary-market sale of that music to a consumer, or at least incrementally diluting the resale value of used copies, and any economist will tell you that a vigorous used-goods market will make the new good more valuable.

    I guess Darren could sell them with the stipulation that they were replacement media only, and requiring the purchaser to prove a preexisting license to the work :).

  3. This is going to sound goofy, but it’s different approach I guess. After spending almost 2 years ripping hundreds of CDs (high quality VBR to mitigate quality loss), I tossed the jewel case and put the disc and artwork in a baggy and stored them away. Not having the plastic cases reduced the space needed by about 75%.

    I’ll probably never play the CDs again, but I’ll hang onto them for now.

    Now, what to do with over 1000 vinyl LPs?

  4. amazon seems to be a good place to start. you dont pay anything for listings, only if they sell. it’s very simple and easy to list online, just a bit tedious. the customer pays the shipping and amazon credits you back with that.

    I’m in the process of selling my cd’s right now and I already sold a few. (for more than $2..)

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