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Out with the old and in with the older

New tech has a way of getting old fast. And once it begins its afterlife in your miscellaneous drawer, forgetting it ever lived is easy.

Which is a shame, because a lot of old gear is a compelling alternative to a lot of new gear, in many ways.

Here are four items you might already have in your garage or broom closet that could amount to much more than a museum artefact.

Film cameras 

Many camera owners gravitate to film camera photography based on their perceptions that a film camera can produce better dynamic range and achieve a unique grainy quality that adds character to their images.

If you have a film camera in storage, there is something to be said for setting up photos where second chances to get it right are limited. Much like writers with typewriters, photographers with film cameras are inclined to approach their work with intentionality, because it can be costly to produce a half-baked image on a film camera.

In Melbourne, FilmNeverDie is operated by a collective of photographers who are passionate about film photography. It runs photo walks, sells film photography products, and provides film photographers all the services they need to indulge their passion. The online environment abounds with resources to guide budding film photographers too. 

Record players 

Although vinyl never completely folded, it has definitely had its moments as a music format — high and low. In the 1970s, as heritage acts such as the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, and The Eagles amped up their legacies, vinyl was well and truly in one of its heydays.

Other music formats — cassette, CD, floppy disc (really!), and streaming — have since peaked and troughed, but vinyl has recently re-emerged as one of the best loved formats. Luminate data shows that vinyl accounts for more than half of physical album sales in the US today, for example.

If you happen to have your old record player in storage or demoted to furniture today, there might still be plenty of life in it. However, there are some key differences between significantly older record players and new ones.

Keep in mind that the mechanical or electrical elements of your vintage turntable can degrade over time. If you want to get the best use out of your old record player, it might mean a visit to an audio expert for servicing.

Some older turntables are unable to play modern records too. Before you launch into your own vinyl resurgence, it’s a good idea to ensure your old record player is compatible with the record collection you have in mind.

Otherwise, it might be time for a new vintage vinyl collection or a new record player.

Modern record players offer many features including Bluetooth pairing, automatic tone arms, and eco-conscious materials.


A visit to the video store used to be an event in itself. But now, instead of getting in a car to forage for our video entertainment, we click a button to navigate streaming services. Which raises the question: Why would you want to revive your VHS collection today, given how convenient streaming is?

Some collectors, for one, pay high prices for unsealed VHS tapes if they are rare, novel, and cased with unique cover art.

Often, it’s not mass-produced movies such as Star Wars, Back to the Future, or Rocky that will command a high fee, but rarities such as horror B-Movies or old sports tapes.

However, many people want to to revisit their VHS collections to preserve grainy memories. Companies such as Zoovio specialise in bringing these memories back from the brink. Indeed, there are various local companies to whom you can bring your tapes for digital reincarnation. You can have your memories repaired, converted to DVD, and stored for online access via your phone or tablet.

Whether you launch into a bona fide tech revival, or just experiment with some of your old gadgets, the experience can be blissfully nostalgic.

Video game consoles 

Modern video games are flush with rich narratives, intricate button combinations, and immersive universes. However, sometimes, all game players want from their video gaming experience is an outlet for unadulterated button-bashing. Retro consoles deliver this in spades.

Today, there are a few ways to reconnect with older video game consoles such as the Atari 2600 and the Sega Master System. If your system is still in good working order, you can use adapters that support compatibility between your system and modern televisions. Otherwise, you can opt for the burgeoning range of emulators that allow retro gaming lovers to revisit classics such as Double Dragon, Super Mario Brothers, and Sonic the Hedgehog. Consoles such as the Nintendo Classic Mini and Atari Flashback 9 are built with all your favourite classics pre-installed.