We all know the story with technology. By the time you’ve opened the box, it’s already out of date. As advances quickly move the latest and greatest tech gadgets into the “out of date” category, it’s hard to know what to buy, and how much to spend.
But, some tech gadgets are a better investment than others, holding their value well. So when the time does come to upgrade, these eight gadgets will still be worth a tidy sum.
1. Beats by Dre
They are not the best headphones on the market. To be honest, they’re not even close to being the best, as far as technical specs are concerned. But when it comes to holding their value, Beats are up there with the biggest and best studio headphones on the market. The reason is simple — people want them. They have a certain “street cred” that seems to be bullet-proof, and they also look pretty cool.
You could pay up to $300 for a pair of Beats Studio Wireless headphones, brand new. The same make and model, used, will sell for close to the same price on eBay. That’s not a big depreciation at all, especially for tech you actually wear. And if you buy limited edition models, they can actually go up in value.
But to be clear, if you want a pair of good headphones that also hold their value, choose Sennheiser.
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2. Apple iPad
It was the first tablet to take the gadget world by storm. It’s still the tablet most people gravitate to, and it doesn’t look like that will change anytime soon. The Apple iPad came along in April of 2010, and after a small adjustment period (what is that thing and what does it do?), everyone was hooked. There have been many different types of iPad and competitor tablets released since, but it’s the iPad that holds its value well.
Now, if you have one of the first 2010 models, it won’t get you much money used, as the tech is too dated. But more recent ones, you’ll have no trouble reselling them for a good chunk of money. For example, a new iPad Air 2 with 64GB is over $600 after tax. The same one, used, is going for over $500 on eBay. Just remember, condition is everything, and original packaging makes a world of difference.
3. Game Consoles (Newer Models)
I was in the market for a Playstation 3 recently, and I figured I would be able to pick up a used one for $50 on Craigslist. Nope. A used one, with just one controller, was $100. Throw in more controllers and games, and you can expect to pay almost as much as a new one. Likewise, the Xbox 360, used, was fetching a tidy sum on Craigslist and eBay as well.
If you take care of your consoles, keep the original box, and keep the games in great condition, you can expect the value of your gaming console to hold for quite a while. What’s more, older consoles are making a comeback. An original NES system can easily fetch over $100, and some of the games are worth thousands.
3. Apple iPhone
Another one for Apple, and not surprisingly it’s their flagship product. The iPhone is not even 10 years old yet (it was launched in 2007), but it has absolutely changed the way we all interact with the online world. And although Android phones are now surpassing iPhones in sales, they are not touching them when it comes to resale values. Do a quick search on eBay for completed listings and you’ll see most iPhone 5 models are selling for around $200 (that’s around half the price of a new 5s). If it’s gold, quadruple that price. Even the original, clunky iPhone has value. In its box, you can get $80–$100 for it. If it’s factory sealed…thousands.
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4. Vintage Audio Equipment
If you want to get a tech gadget that will really hold its value well, don’t buy new. Buy vintage. Right now, the comeback of vinyl means that a good record player (think Technics, NAD, Thoren) will not only be worth every penny, it will also hold its value for years. Or, in the case of designer models, rise significantly.
What’s more, you can still pick up great amplifiers, tape decks, turntables, and speakers for pennies on the dollar; especially if you know just what to look for in the thrift stores and garage sales. I recently picked up a Technics turntable for $15, in the original box, which is already worth over $100 on eBay. Not that I’m selling it! And after Eminem announced the re-release of his Slim Shady album on cassette, you can guarantee tape decks will be next to rocket in value. Grab one cheap while you can.
5. Fitbit Surge
Actually, a lot of wearable tech is holding its value well, including smartwatches and fitness trackers. The Fitbit Surge is definitely up there as one of the best for holding value. Right now, a new FitBit Surge can set you back between $220–$250, while used ones are coming in at around the $150 mark. The reason, other than the sleek design and usability, is the onboard GPS tracking software. Not only can you chart distance and pace, but even elevation.
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6. Google Chromecast
This is a no-brainer, as it’s so affordable to begin with. But if you like buying products that hold their value, this is up there with Apple products. A new Chromecast will cost you $35 from most online retailers, and often it comes with Google Play credits. If you look up used ones on eBay or Craigslist, you’ll see them priced between $20–$25, depending on condition, original box, and so on. It’s an incredible useful little piece of tech, and the simplicity it takes to set up and use makes it an easy item to resell later.
7. Apple Watch
Third time’s a charm for Apple, who continue to have a massive fanbase despite not producing a significant innovation for years. But whatever the current state of Apple’s product line, its products continue to hold their value, and the Apple Watch (shouldn’t that be iWatch, or it that way too creepy?) is no exception.
A new Apple Watch will cost you anywhere from $350–$12,000 (that’s the 18K gold edition), while a used Apple Watch will sell for anywhere from to $130 to $15,000! Clearly some people have money to burn.