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Submission + - Why are old hard drives so expensive? ( 1

50000BTU_barbecue writes: I was idly daydreaming about how I could build a small lapping/polishing machine when I thought of using an old hard drive as the platform. The mechanics and finish are perfect, just put a lapping film on the platter and power the thing. So I started looking for old hard drives on eBay, figuring the size and heft would be best for tinkering. I was amazed to find that the prices on 20 year old hard drives is staggeringly high. With that kind of markup, there has to be a reason. It's not just one model that could conceivably be of use in old but very expensive medical equipment for example. It's all of them. ST-506, MFM, ESDI, you name it, the prices are insane.
So there's either a market for a universal Flash->ancient HD bus interface (go for it!), or some people know something I don't!
What gives?

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Why are old hard drives so expensive?

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  • In my experience, technology that is no longer being actively produced or that requires old fabrication techniques costs more per unit than stuff that's flying off the production lines by the millions. For example, when I upograded RAM for the desktop PC I now use (was bought in 2006!), the 1GB sticks, bought a couple of years after that, were about $10.50 USD each and a generation faster than the RAM in the PC. Now, the same RAM modules are $65.00-or-so USD from the same online seller.

    For 20-year-old har

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