The Smiths US CD Albums in now extinct longbox packaging

What’s a longbox you ask?

A longbox is a form of exterior paper packaging for CDs in widespread use in the 1980s and early 1990s in North America.

When compact discs first began to appear in the retail stores, the longbox packaging served a transitional purpose, allowing shops to file new compact discs in the same record store bins originally used for vinyl. Longboxes were 12″ tall, and capable of containing two separate discs when necessary. Most longboxes were full color, with details about the compact disc on the back, and artwork that was frequently taken from the original square album cover art, reworked for the new shape and size.

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Longboxes began to fade from popularity as the CDs themselves became more colorful (labels initially printed CDs with a plain black-on-silver appearance). Longboxes were also considered environmentally wasteful and were expensive to produce.

Most original longboxes were discarded upon purchase, and they have since become desirable amongst music collectors. [see Wiki for more info]

A compact disc is worth more if it is accompanied by its original longbox that remains intact, sealed from new and morever , unflattened, which is oft how they end up.

Check out this collection of Smiths CDs in longboxes and in stock now at 991.com, with more artists to follow this week.

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