How To Scrap CPU Gold

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Before reading this, be sure to know the basics of How To Scrap A Computer, which includes details on how to isolate a CPU.CPUs are arguably the most expensive component in a scrap computer. To a scrapper they are perfect because they can be scrapped for an expensive amount of money but take up little space. It may take a while to accumulate a couple pounds of them, but when you you do, you literally are sitting on a gold mine. 

Central Processing Units (CPU) are located on the main motherboard of a computer, under a heat-sink. They have gold plated connecting pins, and depending on the model, gold inside and atop themselves. Gold is used in e-waste because it is a great conductor of electricity.

When discussing scrap value, CPUs can be broken up into two general subsets: Fibre and Ceramic CPUs. Fibre CPUs are thin, have relatively little gold, and are usually green. Ceramic CPUs are made from, well… ceramic. They are grey colored and brittle. Ceramic CPUs generally have more gold and are much heavier.

Fibre CPUs

  • Thin
  • Light
  • Little Gold





This IBM chip is worth at least $3.

Ceramic CPUs

  • Dense/heavy
  • Decent gold content
  • Brittle. Can possibly Chip.

 

 

 

This is fibre CPU with a Cu Heat sink!
Copper Heat Sink
  • Tin plated copper makes CPU heavier
  • Found on some Ceramic and fibre CPUs
  • Doesn’t change the type of CPU it is! It is still fibre or ceramic.
  • Don’t pull this part of the CPU off. Sell it as is. 

     

 



Three pentium II cartridges are shown above. These were used before the smaller gold filled edition you may find.

Cartridge CPUs

  • Cartridge CPUs are actually worth less than the fibre Chips by weight.
  • These are actually considered about as valuable as RAM.
  • Are covered by a plastic shell.
  • Can be sold alongside Fibre chips, RAM, or high grade boards.

 

 

Who Buys CPU?


CPU are bought by all types of gold refiners, big and small. Unless you are a giant company that deals in may tons of e-waste a year, you will not be selling to the lare refineries. You will instead be selling on eBay to small refiners who do the work as a hobby or small business.

Actually, some very large companies may end up buying your eBay auctioned e-scrap, so I find it is the best way to go.

How To Sell CPU:

CPUs will always draw great prices when sold on eBay. In fact, many sites that claim to pay “top dollar” for electronics like CPUs, end up selling many of the items on eBay. (Many will just check for working items and sell them as USED!)

How To Sort CPUs for Auction on eBay:

When selling CPUs, ALWAYS segregate the different types. The more specific you can be, the better.  The separated groups of CPUs will draw different buyers because preference during the refining process. For example, a auction for “20 scrap CPUs” will not get you as much money as 3 auctions for “3 Pentium Pro Scrap CPU 8 oz gold precious”, “7 Ceramic CPU scrap gold IMB Pentium” and “1 lbs Fibre CPUs for Gold Recovery ”

By selling as many CPUs as you can in one lot, you will draw in buyers who are willing to pay more money. As a general rule, don’t try to sell less than 7 ceramic CPUs in a lot, and don’t sell less than 1.5 pounds of fibre CPUs in a lot. Like selling any type of scrap, the more you have, the better prices you will get!

 

Auction Or Buy It Now?

I always put CPUs up for auction, because there is absolutely no way for me to know how valuable the chips are. Unless you have sold the exact same chips before, and the market price for gold hasn’t changed at all, or strictly increased, only then can you sell a lot as buy it now. Otherwise, you could set the price ridiculously high and cross your fingers.

 

Which CPU is The Most Valuable for Scrap?

In general, the ceramic type of CPUs are the most valuable. Of those, the CPUs with gold plating on their tops/caps are usually the most valuable.

The Pentium Pro, one of the most valuable, mass-produced, scrap CPUs and contains about a gram of gold. As a seller of these chips, you would be making roughly $15 per chip if you have over 5 of them.

Add any comments you want below or join our Scrap Metal Community.

 

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