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Blast from the past: Cassette player prices surge amid comeback

Nostalgia boom gives tapes another moment in the sun

Sony's cassette players once dominated the global industry in the analog days. (Photo by Takuro Hosoda) 

TOKYO -- Music lovers nostalgic for the faint hissing and crackling of cassette tapes have sent the price of vintage players soaring, with some now going for five times as much as a decade ago.

Sony first launched the Walkman TPS-L2, a cassette player considered the world's first portable music device, back in 1979. Originally priced at 33,000 yen, those in good condition now sell for around 50,000 to 100,000 yen ($365 to $730).

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