Vinyl records have made a huge comeback recently… and what used to sell for a dollar at a garage sale might fetch hundreds or thousands of dollars online. Depending on the pressing, the same album title could be worthless or worth a fortune. We’ll show you how to use the catalog number to look up the value of your vinyl records.
Enter these details
- Enter the catalog number. The catalog number is a combination of letters and numbers printed on the vinyl. Watch the video below for more details.
- Click the search button. It returns the average price of recently sold records it found. If you get a lot of results, narrow it down by using the checkboxes to pick ones that are just like yours.
Looking up a Record’s Value
Pressings and Catalog Numbers
You can think of a pressing as a production run… the first pressings are usually the most collectible and therefor most valuable. If the album is successful, large numbers of albums are made in subsequent pressings. In general, the earlier the pressing, the more valuable the vinyl.
Some pressings are better than others… if the pressing is slightly off-center it could lead to poor sound quality or modulation… not good for an audiophile, and not good for value.
To determine what pressing you have, look for the catalog number on the record (and sometimes the jacket). Each record label used a different catalog numbering scheme, but it’s typically a combination of letters and numbers.
Catalog numbers identify the more valuable original pressings from later more numerous (less valuable) production runs, so it’s important to look up your records by their catalog number and not the artist or album name.
The condition of the vinyl and the jacket are major factors influencing the value. Deep scratches on the vinyl will impact sound quality… making them worth much less. The condition of the jacket also impacts the value of the record. Rough or split spines, rounded corners, surface scuffs, watermarks, stickers, writing… they all negatively impact the value of the record.
The condition of the vinyl is more important than the condition of the jacket. Collectors will pay more for pristine vinyl in a lousy jacket than they will for lousy vinyl in a pristine jacket. The music is more important!
Many records came with artwork: lyrics, pictures, posters, etc. If your record includes the original artwork (and it’s in decent shape) this will increase the value. A lot of records from the 60’s and 70’s are missing their artwork.