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Japan to Discourage Sale of Old Electronics 255

devphaeton writes to tell us Engadget is reporting that after April 1st (no this is not an April fools joke) the sale of old electronics in Japan could become much harder. From the article: "It seems that Japan's government revised its "Electrical Appliance and Material Safety Law" back in April 2001, and added a stipulation that items authorized under the country's old law (the "Electrical Appliance and Material Control Law") couldn't be sold anymore, but granted those products a five-year grace period. Well, if you check your convenient wall calendar, you'll see that the five-year period is about to end, which means that as of April 1, pretty much any electronic gear sold before April 1, 2001 can't be legally resold in Japan." The article also mentions that sellers can continue to sell old gear providing they get certification that the items conform to modern safety standards.
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Japan to Discourage Sale of Old Electronics

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  • by netwiz ( 33291 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:08PM (#14780581) Homepage
    Sounds like a great way to accomplish exactly what bunches of content owners (note I didn't say "producers") have been screaming at Congress about. Seriously, what better way to guarantee obsolescence and quick turnover for technology if you have to rebuy everything every five years because the old tech is straight up illegal? Maybe I read this wrong, but it seems like a huge windfall for consumer electronics manufacturers if/when this goes into effect...
    • by netwiz ( 33291 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:10PM (#14780601) Homepage
      Ah, it would seem that in truth, it's only for electrical safety guidelines, kind of like when the UL requires a recall for faulty/dangerous components...
      • IANASE (I am not a safety engineer)
        No, a recall only happens if a product is found to fail the standards that it was originally tested to.

        This is more like; a '69 Mustang doesn't meet todays safety and emissions standards so you can not sell it.

        Or to stay in electronics; your antique tube radio would not meet UL standards today so you have to junk it.

        No, I did not RTFM so don't know if private sales are exempt or whatever.

        • ultimately, what the government doesn't know about can't hurt you. I take the same view in this country: technically, anything, anything I sell to another party must have sales tax submitted to the Powers That Be, and it's the responsibility of the person receiving the money to do so. In practice, nobody does it, unless it's something large, like a car, or house, or land. In this case, it's probably only an issue if you actually tell the government.
        • by suitepotato ( 863945 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @09:47PM (#14781483)
          Except you damn well can sell a 69 Mustang. And register it. And drive it. In CT you get a nice little plate with a picture of a Ford Model T on it and you get certain exemptions and so forth. Which explains all the old unsafe at any speed horribly polluting cars at the weekend cruise nights owned by the upper middle class people who typically vote Democrat and are in favor of those laws against unsafe and polluting cars. As long as they aren't theirs. They also tend to drive huge honkin SUVs during the week. In that attrocious color known as Hunter Green.

          What can you do?
          • Left wing Right wing, not important.

            That everyone agrees big, fuel guzzling, small car crushing vehicles shouldn't be on the road (let alone truck excemptions for SUV's in the U.S. [under Bush renewed I might add (Thank you Soccer Mom Vote's for Republicans)]).

            No one wants em on the road, no group can be faulted as long as they are ashamed that the act took place and are making actions to rectify the situation.
            • Hey, I'm 6'10", and I haul a bunch of kids around. I happen to like my big, fuel guzzling, small-car-crushing vechicle, namely because it's one of the only vehicles I fit in. If you don't like people driving bigger vehicles than you, get a bigger vehicle yourself. Why should others have to change their behavior to suit you?
              • Why should others have to change their behavior to suit you?

                Because it's not about suiting "you", it's about suiting "the planet", and everyone else you share it with (NB: you are not the centre of the universe)
              • If you don't like people driving bigger vehicles than you, get a bigger vehicle yourself.

                Perfect logic, if only the people hating on you were doing so simply because they're jealous of the volumetric size of your vehicle.

                Reminds me of smokers who get defensive about people that find their habit disgusting and take measure to do something about it. As if it's not that the people don't dislike smoke blown in their face. Oh, no. They do it because they enjoy taking away the smoker's liberty or because they w
          • Which explains all the old unsafe at any speed horribly polluting cars at the weekend cruise nights owned by the upper middle class people who typically vote Democrat and are in favor of those laws against unsafe and polluting cars. As long as they aren't theirs. They also tend to drive huge honkin SUVs during the week.

            Only an idiot would say that.

            First of all, if you've been around the country at all, you'd know that the large majority of in-use pre-80s cars are in RED STATES, where money is scarce, fixing

          • "Except you damn well can sell a 69 Mustang. And register it. And drive it."

            Surely you aren't wanting to destroy a piece of living history are you? Lord, give it a break. It isn't like there are tons of these old 'polluter' cars on the roads these days. Certainly, a few of them driving around on the weekends isn't even making a DENT is the pollution of the atmosphere...or a chief cause of 'global warming'.

            Hey, old 110+ year old houses aren't efficient nor insulated properly, and waste energy. Should we

          • Connecticut is an interesting place. They are generally regarded as liberal, yet they have a Republican governor who has the highest approval of any governor, and a war hawk Democratic senator who may not win re-election. I'd say that it's not safe to make blanket assumptions about the political leanings of the state's population.
    • Though it might not have been the original intent it might be a nice means of forced consumerism for an economy struggling against a weak Yen.
      • by tcopeland ( 32225 ) * <tomNO@SPAMthomasleecopeland.com> on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:17PM (#14780670) Homepage
        > for an economy struggling against a weak Yen.

        The Japanese economy is struggling against their own demographics [indexmundi.com]; there are fewer and fewer young people to support more and more older folks. Hard to say how that's going to sort itself out... but seems like a vacuum is opening there that will be filled by someone.
        • agreed. and to add to that - the rampant consumerism needed to drive modern economies is often diametrically opposed to classic child-rearing --- in Japan anyway. Fewer young women are looking to marry and start families.

          isn't it in japan where they're collecting eggs with the ultimate aim of generating state-children?

        • I guess this is the logical argument against pornography people have been looking for. There's no new blood, brains, and muscle to build up the nation if all your men are buying RealDolls and your women want to be pop stars instead of mothers.
        • The Japanese economy is struggling against their own demographics; there are fewer and fewer young people to support more and more older folks. Hard to say how that's going to sort itself out... but seems like a vacuum is opening there that will be filled by someone.

          That is where Asimo will come in. They will build robots to take care of all the older folks. And that Aibo dog robot.
    • by MightyMartian ( 840721 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:11PM (#14780611) Journal
      There must be a serious plague of exploding N64s and MP3 players in Japan.
      • Antique Electronics? (Score:4, Informative)

        by BigBlockMopar ( 191202 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @08:24PM (#14781080) Homepage

        There must be a serious plague of exploding N64s and MP3 players in Japan.

        Well, in all seriousness though, this is a problem.

        Lots of early consumer electronics devices won't even remotely approach modern safety standards. Consider early radios and TV sets which often used a "hot chassis" (where the steel chassis was directly connected to one side of the power line as part of a system avoiding the use of an expensive power transformer), like those using the traditional "All American Five [wikipedia.org]" tube lineup (50B5 or 50C5, 35W4, 12AV6, 12BE6, 12BA6), or the flip-leaf toasters of the 1920s. These items constitute only a very small risk because they will mostly be in very casual use by informed collectors and restorers, and short of mounting them in fireproof plexiglass boxes with isolation transformers, they will never even approach modern safety standards. (Note that a hot chassis wasn't as big a risk before they became surrounded by modern grounded electrical equipment - in their designed surroundings, you were unlikely to touch a grounded object at the same time as the radio. Also note that *many* post-war Japanese radios used the All-American Five design!)

        Such a rule would effectively eliminate the collectable marketplace and probably result in the loss of many of the early products of companies which later became leaders in their fields. The first Sony transistor radio is historically significant, as is the first JVC VHS VCR, as is...

        Japan is also noted among automotive enthusiasts for similarly draconian rules surrounding old cars - I cannot corroborate this, but I have heard that the *entire* braking system must be replaced in all cars over a certain number of years of age.

        The grisly irony, of course, is that this is from a culture which reveres aged people... but they're apparently happy to destroy the remaining artifacts those people built.

        (By the way, good rule of thumb: *never* leave any piece of electronic equipment made before about 1980 running unattended, inspect them for possible dangers like rotten insulation, and *always* assume that any exposed metal pieces are connected to one side of the power line.)

        • The grisly irony, of course, is that this is from a culture which reveres aged people... but they're apparently happy to destroy the remaining artifacts those people built.

          It's ironic that they treat old people differently from old things? Perhaps it's your own cultural norms you should be concerned with.

        • It's a cultural thing. Japan (as well as much of first-world Asia) frowns upon buying anything second-hand (there's no concept of a thrift store in much of Asia). This causes phenomenons like "gray-market Yamaha pianos" - used Yamahas which nobody would buy Japan due to the fact that they're used - nevermind that a good percentage of them are good, solid instruments that were probably just lightly used by a family - which are lapped up happily by North American consumers.

          But on the other hand, Japanese seem
        • "I have heard that the *entire* braking system must be replaced in all cars over a certain number of years of age."

          We're close to that in the US. No shop wants to get sued if somebody gets in an accident when the brakes fail, so every shop will tell you you need new everything-brake-related whenever you go to them with a brake issue on an older car. It's not a law, it's CYA, but it amounts to almost the same thing.
        • Japan is also noted among automotive enthusiasts for similarly draconian rules surrounding old cars - I cannot corroborate this, but I have heard that the *entire* braking system must be replaced in all cars over a certain number of years of age.

          I had heard a similar myth that auto engines required replacing after 40,000 miles as there were a number of import engines available in the US with this claimed 40,000 mile limit. Truth is, car inspection can be so expensive that people there would rather just trad
        • Such a rule would effectively eliminate the collectable marketplace and probably result in the loss of many of the early products of companies which later became leaders in their fields.

          Even more than that, it would seriously cripple trade in items you wouldn't think about.

          Vintage audio/amateur radio equipment. Audiophiles all over Japan will be screaming, as well as the amateur radio crowd. Many currently-operating amateur stations are either partially or wholly made up of vintage to moderately (10-15-20 y
    • people can't stop infringing on the copyrights and the copyright holders (the correct term) can't stop trying to get the control over the distribution channels. Sounds fair.
    • not really.. (Score:2, Offtopic)

      by slughead ( 592713 )
      Maybe I read this wrong, but it seems like a huge windfall for consumer electronics manufacturers if/when this goes into effect...

      It doesn't mean that people will have to buy new stuff, it just says that all new stuff will have to be compliant.

      If the new standards are harder to comply with, perhaps it could mean less profit on new items sold.

      On the other hand, this power could be used to further DRM restrictions on all consumer electronics manufacturers.

      What the FCC is doing to consumers with this whole dig
      • Moreover, I'd like to add that forcing cable companies to comply with FCC regulations is totally ridiculous. How do they regulate wiring intrastate using the "interstate commerce clause"?

        Who said anything about the FCC?

      • The FCC is buying 2 digital tuners per household so that people don't have to pay to upgrade.

        That's a pretty fair deal in the end.
  • Wow, this summary is actually a lot better than digg's, where it sounded like ANY hardware >5 years old was banned from being sold. With this explanation it actually starts making sense. It's just another overzealous government protecting it's citizen from unrealistic harms. I read speculation earlier that Sony etc. had lobbied for this legislation to ban competition from the second hand market, but it doesn't sound like it any more. Firstly, this is a one-time effect, and secondly five year old stuff
    • Re:better summary (Score:2, Informative)

      by rminsk ( 831757 )
      ...five year old stuff doesn't really compete with anything new.
      My 40 year old tube amp will compete with anything modern you can throw at it.
    • Uh, dude, it's obvious pandering to the consumer electronics industry. Any electrical appliances made since the 60s are just as safe as anything made today. The requirements haven't changed. The Japanese have a similar law for cars, too. Ostensibly, it's for emissions/fuel economy purposes. In reality, manufacturing a new car causes several times more emissions than using an inefficient one, so it's simply to boost Toyota's bottom line.
  • I was gonna make an April Fools jab, but then I realized owning a room full of 30 year old tin boxes [engadget.com] is no laughing matter.
  • Tinkerers? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Blazeix ( 924805 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:09PM (#14780595) Homepage Journal
    I know I learned a lot about electronics from taking apart old electronics. I'm sure there are many people out there that did the same. Will this come to an end in Japan?
    • Re:Tinkerers? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ioErr ( 691174 )
      If the ban is on selling, then in the short term, wouldn't this increase the amount of old electronics people are willing to give you to take apart?
    • Re:Tinkerers? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by petermgreen ( 876956 ) <`plugwash' `at' `p10link.net'> on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:31PM (#14780757) Homepage
      thing is in the last decade or so (possiblly longer i'm unsure when this started) most consumer electronics has become so complex and/or miniturized that you don't stand a chance of figuring out whats going on without a circuit diagram or a lot of electronics knowlage.

      what did you take apart that taught you a lot about electronics?
      • Re:Tinkerers? (Score:3, Informative)

        by deacon ( 40533 )
        Most of the time the problem is dried out electrolytic caps. Buy or build an ESR meter, spend 30 cents on caps, and have a working product.

        The silicon parts rarely go bad.

      • Check out the latest issue (April '06) of QST magazine. The cover story is about a ham who home-brewed a fully modern HF transceiver, with specs that actually exceed commercial transceivers costing $3K+.

        Japan has a large amateur radio population, I'm wondering what effect this will have on them?

      • Re:Tinkerers? (Score:2, Interesting)

        by bluelip ( 123578 )
        Obviously I can't recall everything I've opened up, but here are some:

        The gray box on the outside of my parent's house for the telco demark : I learned that the problem is usually with the end user.

        Dismantled the markers for the automatic feeding of livestock on my family's farm : I learned about how an access card works 15 years before I had my own.

        A toaster : How resistance generates heat

        Tape decks : How the tape stores it's information magnetically

        VCRs : How the head is able to read the information from
      • Re:Tinkerers? (Score:3, Interesting)

        by evilviper ( 135110 )

        thing is in the last decade or so (possiblly longer i'm unsure when this started) most consumer electronics has become so complex and/or miniturized that you don't stand a chance of figuring out whats going on without a circuit diagram or a lot of electronics knowlage.

        Things have gotten more complex, in general, but that doesn't mean there isn't still a tremendous ammount to learn, and fix!

        What are the biggest problems with consumer electronics these days? Dead capacitors, loose solder connections, etc.

        Sur

    • Oh, don't worry about that any more. It's much easier these days. There's a black box called a microcontroller and it does everything. You can't actually see what it does but as it's approximately Turing complete you know it can do anything. There you go, that's all you need to know about modern electronic equipment.
  • by EmbeddedJanitor ( 597831 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:11PM (#14780615)
    This has been an ongoing thing in Japan. It drives the Japanese imported car idustry in places like New Zealand. Forcing local consumption also helps Japan develop new products in its quest to export. For an interesting read http://www.virtualschool.edu/mon/Economics/Japan/J apanYes [virtualschool.edu]. I don't endorse or condemn what's written here, not that my endorsement or condemnation are worth jack.
  • Only retail (Score:5, Informative)

    by JanneM ( 7445 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:12PM (#14780628) Homepage
    This is only retail sales, not individuals. And it isn't a ban, it merely requires the retailer to take responsibility that the device is safe according to the new standard. And it involves only the safety of high-voltage (mains-powered) equipment, not electronics.

    Here's a link discussing it: http://www.mutantfrog.com/2006/02/22/2nd-hand-elec tronics-sales-will-not-soon-be-illegal-in-japan/ [mutantfrog.com]
       
  • You really have to wonder how effective their recycling operations are. Japan is going to experience a massive increase in solid waste being disposed of - with a good portion of it requiring special processing to handle the toxic elements - if this law is actually enforced.

    Then again, I think this law is just a ploy by Nintendo lobbyists to force Japanese consumers to purchase their continual stream of repackaged..er..."innovative" GameBoys and uses a Revolution to play all of the old games, instead of a 1,
  • by Zerbs ( 898056 )
    So if people can't resell the stuff, I'm willing to bet alot of it will end up in the garbage. And I'm sure most of what ends up in the garbage won't be disposed of properly.
    • Actually Japan has an incredibly efficient waste disposal system, and they do garbage sorting between burnable and no burnable rubbish as well. They can't uselandfills so most rubbish gets burned in a controlled pressurized furnace environment. Harmful gases are treated. The exhaust gas is monitored so that harmful particles do not escape in dangerous volumes. The heat produces from the huge furnaces goes back onto the power grid. The waste material is then treated further and turned into something useful.
  • This is ridiculous. Why stop the resale of old electronics? Electronics IMPROVE over time - why stop the resale of old ones?

    As technology is phased out, it is hard to get unless resold - i.e. the Famicom. So you can't buy an old electronic?

    Buying older games for my N64 doesn't provide any competition to my buying of games for my Xbox 360. The N64 is different, and I can get classics for it. I can get better (looking) games for my 360.

    My point? Old electronics don't compete with new ones. To stop resale coul
    • by SydShamino ( 547793 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:55PM (#14780898)
      As has been pointed out, this only applies to old electronics that connect to MAINS circuits (e.g. wall outlets, which are 100 VAC RMS in Japan IIRC).

      Category II circuit, such as MAINS, as defined by IEC and (in the US) Underwriter's Laboratories, must be designed to tolerate overvoltage conditions such as those caused by transformer shorts or relatively distant lightning strikes. From UL 3121-1, a circuit designed with a working voltage of 100 V DC or AC RMS must tolerate a peak impulse voltage of 1360 V for a few microseconds (from table D.10). This doesn't necessarily mean that the product still has to work after such an impulse; it just means that the product must remain safe to the operator for such an impulse. Fuses can blow, chips can be damaged, but no voltage greater than 60 V DC / 42.4 V AC pk can be exposed to the user.

      I assume that Japan's old standard, before 2001, was weaker than this. Thus, older electronics can't be sold because they could theoretically kill the users.

      This only applies to products that carried MAINS voltages. (Products with wall-warts limit the high voltage to the wall, and are completely unaffected.) Even then, the old products might have been designed above the standard, and therefore could still be sold anyway.

      (Disclaimer: I design high voltage hardware products.)
      • This only applies to products that carried MAINS voltages. (Products with wall-warts limit the high voltage to the wall, and are completely unaffected.)

        How are you sure that the definition of "carried" in the law doesn't include the short distance that the 100VAC travels inside the wall-wart or from the outlet through the plug to the wall-wart? What good is a used Famicom, Super Famicom, or N64 if you can't buy a working power supply for it? And doesn't, say, the PlayStation 1 (not the smaller PSOne) ha

  • As far as regular consumers go, this regulation is not a big deal in Japan. Many Japanese would prefer buying new hardwares/appliances to buying them used (the same goes to automotives).

    Yes, there is a niche market to resell the used materials, but the market is not as big as it is over here in the U.S. (I'm thinking eBay or craiglist). So from consumers' stand point I don't think this would cause major headaches.

    As far as the recycling of old gadgets go? For *that*, I would like to know what the government
  • Disappointing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ickoonite ( 639305 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:14PM (#14780645) Homepage
    This is rather disheartening news. One of the most wonderful things about Japan is its thriving second hand market, and I for one spent an awful lot of money in shops like Sofmap [sofmap.com], mostly on Mac stuff.

    It all seemed to work so well. The Japanese have, to put it mildly, something of a penchant for things shiny and new, so what they toss out would be regarded by Westerners as nearly new. So rather than putting all this nearly new stuff to waste, they sell it to shops like Sofmap, who sell it on to people like me, who are quite happy with a nearly new bargain. Contrast that with, say, Britain, where, the mobile phone market excepted, we make the most of our computers and such - the term the Japanese use is tsukaikomu.

    It's not as though this is going to net the computer companies much more profit - people buy new things anyway, as stated above.

    Shame. I had hoped to net myself a Flower Power iMac next time I was out there...

    iqu :s
  • From the Update, I get the idea that it is only for things that may be unsafe to sell...So, the old model of a TV set that was known to shock people won't be legal to sell, but the old cell phone or 486 is fine?
  • Since nobody in their right mind will bother certifying old equipment for resell, what this law does is push all that old stuff off-shore really fast. Most will go to China is my guess.

    Now, this undercuts a market in Japan for old stuff, and that market may or may not have been important in the first place. But the law *will* create a few more sales for electronics companies. I suppose Ebay and the others are a bit put off since used electronics might be a big part of their sales... but I don't know that fo
  • by Shadow Wrought ( 586631 ) * <shadow.wrought@O ... il.com minus bsd> on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:18PM (#14780677) Homepage Journal
    Dumped Japanese consumer electronics. Buy Now!
  • by Dzimas ( 547818 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:23PM (#14780710)
    Similar restrictions are going into effect across Europe. Their goal is two-fold: restrict the sale of goods containing certain hazardous substances such as lead-based solder, mercury, and a handful of others (termed the RoHS initiative). If you think about it, this makes sense. We can't pee in our drinking water forever. ;) The second part of the European legislation involves a formal disposal process for *all* electronic devices. It's termed WEE, and requires manufacturers to arrange for the collection and recycling/disposal of all our old crap.

    Like Japan, this may effect the resale of used goods, although there will be a patchwork of mildly inconsistent laws throughout the EU. As I see it, these initiatives will have enormous impact on the used technology market AND on small manufacturers, as another level of paperwork and expense is added to the process. The result could be fewer garage startups like Apple and H-P.

    • Of human lead disposal, the vast majority, over 90%, is car battries. Solder is only a fraction of the remaining fraction. Eliminating lead solder, while keeping lead car battries, is like saving power by turning off a table lamp, while leaving your windows open and AC on.

      But it gets worse. The non-lead solders are predominantly tin. This has two major disadvantages over lead based solders:

      1) Higher melting point. Means more components get fried and more joints don't form properly in creation, leading to mo
      • Really, this is not only a solution to a non-issue, it just makes things worse over all.
        God bless the Treaty of Rome and Our Glorious Leaders who signed it! May our children's children never forget the day that our forefathers forever signed away our freedoms for the sake of multinational corporations and the ever-expanding bureaucracy!
      • Of human lead disposal, the vast majority, over 90%, is car battries. Solder is only a fraction of the remaining fraction.

        Car batteries have enough value that you can be sure they will practically ALWAYS be recycled properly.

        Lead solder, however, gets tossed into landfills all the time, in the form of discarded stereos, computers, etc.

        Eliminating lead solder, while keeping lead car battries, is like saving power by turning off a table lamp, while leaving your windows open and AC on.

        Wow, what a terrible anal

    • "We can't pee in our drinking water forever. "

      except that water has already been peed in.
      Seriously, how is taking all the old equipment and througinh it away going to help? I am all for finding cleaner ways to do things, but you can't take back the lead and mercury already in components.
    • We can't pee in our drinking water forever. ;)

      Actually, we probably can - Urine is readily digested by water microbes and is usually sterile. The mexicans grew crops in their sewage ponds until spanish invasion, and the system had been in place for maybe 1500 years. Our society has a rather strange aversion to our own bodily wastes, yet we willingly expose ourself to known carcenogens. Fascinating.
  • by yppiz ( 574466 ) on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:25PM (#14780719) Homepage
    I suspect that if electronics are harder to re-sell in Japan, we're going to start seeing some neat cheap used electronics coming over to foreign markets. I wouldn't mind if some of the "made for the Japanese market only" notebooks and appliances became available used in the US.

    --Pat

  • Turns out that sellers of certain kinds of old gear will have to get a government seal certifying that the items adhere to modern saftey standards if they want to sell the stuff after April 1. - I feel there is some money to be made here by some industrious government workers.
  • Vintage Audio (Score:5, Interesting)

    by HowIsMyDriving? ( 142335 ) <`ben.parkhurst' `at' `gmail.com'> on Wednesday February 22, 2006 @07:44PM (#14780847)
    People in Japan over the last 30 years have been draining Vintage tubed audio equipment and horn loudspeakers from the US like no other country. If you were to go over to Japan with an old Western Electric 300b Based tube amp, you could get thousands of dollars for it. An example of a Mcintosh MC 30 6l6 based amp going price in the US is around 600-1000 dollars per mono bock. If I were to take the amps over there, I could get 5-10k for a set. The same with Altec, JBL, Klipsch, Western electric speakers. This will hurt a huge tubed audio and vintage audio industry in Japan. Most of their high end audio gear is still tubed based, and they often love to use vintage caps, resistors, transformers, for they think they have better sound. This will put lots of people out of business.
    • I work for a small manufacturer of high-end vacuum tube audio equipment in the USA. While we have almost zero sales in Japan, we often get inquiries about vintage equipment and tubes. Last month, a Japanese gentleman stopped by the shop, with an American friend & interpreter. The laundry list was exactly as you describe - Western Electric, Voice of the Theater, Ampex, JBL, Altec, Electro-Voice and so forth.

      As one would expect, he was exceptionally polite and willing to look at anything we cared to sho

    • Sounds like a nice little business. I live in Tokyo, do you have anything you want me to try and sell?
  • This is already true in Australia - My parent's Church can't sell electrical applicances in their fete due to lack of certification.

    I wonder if it is a ploy by industry groups to increase 'consumer spending', i.e. stop people repairing old and force them to buy (cheap, shoddy) new stuff.
  • I can just see this now:

    "Hey, wanna buy a pager? Come on, Alphanumeric! How about a blender?
    I've got a deal just for you on vcr's buddy.. Step into my alley"
  • Uhhh... (Score:2, Insightful)

    What's the deal here? This hardly seems like news.

    So, electronics that were authorized under the old guidelines cannot be sold... unless the conform to the new. Anything that is safe can still be sold!
  • Guess the Amiga stores are screwed. That's assuming there's one left in Japan.
  • Several years ago, I read something that relates to this. Someone with better knowledge of Japanese consumer culture can chime in and correct me if this is incorrect.

    I read that on a certain day every year in Japan, it is customary (at least in the wealthier areas) to put all of your used (from the last year or so) electronics out on the curb (or in the alley, whichever you have) as an emblem of your prosperity, and as a demonstration of your intent to replace your old Japanese goods with new.

    People fro

    • I read that on a certain day every year in Japan, it is customary (at least in the wealthier areas) to put all of your used (from the last year or so) electronics out on the curb (or in the alley, whichever you have) as an emblem of your prosperity, and as a demonstration of your intent to replace your old Japanese goods with new.

      Sigh. A kernel of truth blown up into unrecognizeability.

      One week in April there are several one-day holidays that happen to fall in that one week, and the sole remaining workday i
  • I suspect the deadline is not focused on second-hand resale of used products; instead, it is aimed more toward first-time ("new") sales of products from inventory that was designed and manufactured before the current DENAN safety law.

    While many consumer goods are "perishable" because new models/features/prices are obsoleting older ones, there are some mature products that might have been manufactured years ago, are stock piled in the warehouses, and just continue to trickle out (instead of being actively ma
  • Instead of those semi-legitimate ads about supporting terror with drugs...we opted for stupid and illegitimate ads equating content "piracy" with terrorism. Now we'll have ill-conceived ads about supporting terror with electronics. Here goes (feel free to add/subtract anything from here):

    "If you buy hardware from Japan, you ::hint ambiguity:: may be supporting terrorists on the black market. So now you will be stealing money from those hard-working hardware manufacturers [who are compensated duly in sweat-

  • Do CD/DVD/VHSs count under this? If so I sense a quick rise in pirating video game soundtracks, and anything anime related.

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