Originally Posted by A Harris
No offense, but you seem to be overthinking this a little... A seller would be remiss if they knew the original retail and did not list it in the auction. The retail price is very relevant, in fact it is the most important factor in determining fair market value from a reseller. Also, assuming that an item is somehow damaged or undesireable just because it did not sell at retail would be a big mistake. As someone with much personal experience in this area, I can tell you that it is often the very best items from stores that end up with discounters!
No offense taken. If I were the seller I'd include the retail price too.
But as a buyer you should understand why it's being put there and that is to persuade you to buy under the idea that somehow it's a great deal at the current price because it retailed for $1500 or whatever. It's a known behavioral finance trick that pays dividends to the seller. As I said, if they were flying off the shelves at $1500 none would appear on ebay -- unless you think sellers are doing such for philanthropy. As a buyer, you should ignore that info and simply ask what is it worth to you and is the price fair.
For the record, I buy full retail and I buy deep discount (i.e., ebay) depending on the items.