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Resealed CDs Sold as New on Amazon UK (and other places)

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by boiledbeans, May 22, 2015.

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  1. boiledbeans

    boiledbeans Forum Resident Thread Starter

    I did a search on the forum. There were some results on reseals from 3rd party sellers on Amazon. But none directly from Amazon UK, so I'm posting this to create awareness of this problem and to see if anyone knows why this is happening.

    I have encountered many cases of getting resealed CDs sold as new on Amazon UK. I have encountered this not just when ordering directly from Amazon UK, but also from 3rd party sellers, and also 3rd party sellers fulfilled by Amazon UK. I have also seen such resealed CDs at my local HMV in Singapore, as well as in HMV Hong Kong.

    So I think it's something to do with the distributors higher up in the chain.

    I first noticed this issue about 2 years ago, but thought it might have been one-off cases back then. Now, I realize it's occurring on a large scale.

    This only seems to occur with CDs made in Europe. I haven't encountered such problems with CDs made in USA or from Amazon.com.

    These 'new' CDs are shrinkwrapped with new jewel cases, but the inserts and CDs appear quite worn so I don't think they are just new old stock.

    So has anyone also encountered this and does anyone know why this is happening?

    This is a list of the CDs which I have seen at HMV or received from Amazon UK which have been resealed. I'm sure there's more. Please add on to the list if you've encountered them.

    Alanis Morissette - Jagged Little Pill
    Avril Lavigne - Let Go
    Bon Jovi - Cross Road
    Cardigans, The - First Band on the Moon
    Celine Dion - Falling into You
    Charlatans, The   - Tellin' Stories (NIMBUS)
    Corrs, The - Forgiven, Not Forgotten
    Corrs, The - Talk on Corners (3 versions: 13 track, 14 track, special edition)
    Corrs, The - In Blue (2-CD Special Edition)
    Dido - No Angel (2-CD Special Edition)
    Eurythmics - Greatest Hits (1991)
    Foreigner - Very Best...and Beyond
    Lush - Lovelife (NIMBUS)
    Madonna - GHV2
    Michael Jackson - History (Spanish single disc)
    Oasis - Definitely Maybe (CRECD)
    Oasis - Morning Glory (CRECD)
    Oasis - Be Here Now (CRECD)
    Passengers - Original Soundtrack 1
    Paul Weller - As Is Now (2-CD Special Edition)
    Primal Scream - Vanishing Point (CRECD)
    R.E.M. - New Adventures in Hi-Fi
    Red Hot Chili Peppers - Greatest Hits
    Shania Twain - Up! (2-CD Red + Blue)
    Sting - Fields of Gold (1994 non-remaster)
    Teenage Fanclub - Thirteen
    Tori Amos - Under the Pink
    U2 - Pop
    U2 - All That You Can't Leave Behind
    U2 - How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb (12 track CD+DVD)
    Various - Grease Soundtrack
    Verve, The - This Is Music: The Singles 92-98
    Wombats, The - This Modern Glitch
    I have kept some CDs, especially those that are out of print, like the Eurythmics and the 1994 Sting CD. But others, I've returned to Amazon UK without even opening it.

    It's a hit and miss situation when ordering from Amazon UK. You might get a resealed CD, or a brand new one. For example, the first time I ordered The Charlatans' Tellin' Stories, I got a resealed CD, "Mastered by Nimbus" in the matrix. Some time later, I ordered again and got a factory new CD, made by Sonopress. Maybe they came from different Amazon UK warehouses.

    In my next post, I'm going to describe how to spot such a resealed CD without even opening it.
    Last edited: May 22, 2015
    Hotdog likes this.
  2. boiledbeans

    boiledbeans Forum Resident Thread Starter

    So this is how you spot a resealed CD without opening it (Part 1).

    It will have a fold like this at the top and bottom of the jewel case.

    It MAY have a wide seam like this. (Note: Many don't have this wide seam)
  3. boiledbeans

    boiledbeans Forum Resident Thread Starter

    So this is how you spot a resealed CD without opening it (Part 2 - The forum only allows 5 images per message).

    Jewel Case
    The jewel case is usually replaced. So all original promo stickers are missing. The number on the front of the jewel case will be x.x (single digit.single digit), in this example, it's 8.4.

    You can see it without opening the shrinkwrap by looking at an angle like this. In this example, the number is 4.4.

    The tray will have a circle on the top and bottom corners. This photo only shows the top corner.

    The front of the jewel case MAY have this strange stopper, with both the vertical stopper and the tab bit. (Note: Many have just the usual stoppers)

    It MAY have a sticker like this on the shrinkwrap. (Many don't have a sticker)

    What's interesting is that for factory new CDs, this sticker usually states the record label, i.e. Universal, Warner, or Sony. But in this case, the sticker just says 'Import Fono CD', with no record label. So this is also a reason why I think this problem has something to do with the distributors, not the retailers like Amazon UK.

    Other Comments
    Take note, this is neither a necessary nor sufficient situation (for you logicians).

    There are cases of resealed CDs not looking like this. For example, some (though rare) jewel cases have the number OD-xx, instead of the x.x in this post.

    On the other hand, there are also brand new factory sealed CDs using very similar jewel cases. If it's from the UK EDC plant (IFPI 04xx), it will use a similar jewel case, with the number as x.x and the tray will have circles at the corners.

    All the information in these 3 posts are from my own observations of the resealed CDs.
    Last edited: May 22, 2015
  4. Joseph.McClure

    Joseph.McClure Forum Resident

    Memphis, TN
    Maybe they don't come sealed from the manufacturer and are sealed at the distributor level? Back in the 80's when I bought UK CDs here in the US they were not sealed.
    Dave likes this.
  5. Many European CDs aren't sealed at the factory. I know of at least one U.S. importer that seals European CDs themselves when they sell them in the U.S. since Americans are so trained to look for sealed product. It's quite possible this is happening at the distributor level from store returns and such.

    CDs manufactured outside of the EU should come sealed.
  6. boiledbeans

    boiledbeans Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Probably "Resealed" is the wrong word in the thread title since most releases in Europe were not sealed in the first place.

    But in this case, it seems that the distributor (or whoever it is) is not just sealing the CDs. First, they are using used stock (I believe so since the booklet and CDs are sometimes worn, and many are OOP like 'Mastered by Nimbus').

    Second, they are also replacing the jewel cases with most of the new jewel cases having the same x.x numbering (as in the photos above). They are definitely not the original jewel cases. For example, original jewel cases coming from the Universal EDC Germany plant (IFPI 01xx) are numbered PLG Pxx.x or PLG xx.x, where x is a single digit.

    So it seems these aren't isolated incidents but rather, they are done in a large scale manner.

    The main issue here is passing off used CDs as new. The jewel case numbering allows me to deduce that it is likely done by the same people.
    Last edited: May 22, 2015
    Hotdog likes this.
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