I broke this post into two.
The latest thing I see happening on eBay is the Fake auctions that are designed to make people think an item is worth a whole lot more than it really is. Case in point I was looking for an IFR 1200S and 1500 station monitors and I of course saw the typical insane pricing on the units, working units going for $1800-$2000 and non working units going for typically $950 - $1300
All of this IMO was being driven by this constant list of units being sold by large electronic dealers that are always asking for $5000 for the same units. You would think it's a joke but in fact it's a ploy to keep the public thinking the value of the item is a steal at $1800 because most of the other auctions you see are asking for $5K.
Look at this: http://www.ebay.com/itm/IFR-FM-AM-1500-Communication-Service-Monitor-/150625659652?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2311fd2b04#ht_3883wt_1134
Now look at the (OFFER) history to the right of the picture. Notice that offers have been made on this item all the way back from 2012. This item has been listed and re-listed for 2 years, they have no intention of selling it, they are just using it as a Prop. I have seen this kind of thing done with almost all hot selling expensive electronic items. And BTW I did get a 1500 and I only paid $500 for it on eBay. IMO that's about what its worth.
Another quick tip, if you see a large company selling something like a 1990's agilent spectrum analyzer and they say it's not working but they have no idea what is wrong. Take a quick look at what else they are selling. I will bet you find that they are selling 2 more of these units and one or both of the other ones is working fine. The one that your thinking of buying at a good price has been scraped, they used three units to make one or two units and that cheap one your getting contains every bad board from the other two.