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When buying a used MP3 player, it is best to stick with models that are no more than two or three years old to make sure they are compatible with the latest software, and that accessories are still available for them.
The biggest consideration when buying a used iPod is the battery. iPod batteries can only be charged between 300 and 450 times and then they are gone forever. There are many kits available to replace the batteries, but they run around $100 and should be factored into your total costs if battery life is low.
Be sure to ask the seller about the battery - has it recently been replaced? How long does it hold charge before needing recharged? Many iPod users just don't want the hassle of replacing the battery, so they sell their player when it gets to that point.
Another thing to check is the reviews for the player you are considering. Are there any "gotchas" with this player? Did the manufacturer have some that had to be completely reformatted? If there are known quality issues with that player, best to steer clear of it.
Make sure that you are receiving a complete package including all power and interface cords for your player.
Also, some sellers leave their music intact on their players as an added bonus. This can be great - if you share the same taste in music!