Solid rose-gold Apple earbuds

An auction to raise money for (Red) — the charity that supports the fight against AIDS — will be hosted on 28 November, curated by Apple's Jony Ive and Australian designer Marc Newson.

Charity (Red) has found a way to use capitalist consumerism for good — partnering brands pledge to donate up to 50 per cent of its (Red)-branded products to AIDS research. Admittedly, that could mean as little as 0.5 per cent, but if people are going to be buying things anyway, surely every little bit helps, right?

Anyway, politics aside, a charity auction — whereby people with disposable funds may choose to part with those funds for vastly overpriced products in order to provide services and assistance to those who need it — is a decent way of raising capital. (Red)'s latest charity auction will be going down on 28 November at Sotheby's in New York, with proceeds going towards The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

Curated by senior vice president of Design at Apple Jony Ive and designer Marc Newson, the collection includes a bunch of gorgeous tech products designed by both of them. Of course, they seem to have been made specifically with the rich in mind, but that doesn't stop us admiring them.

"It's been a fantastic honour to curate this collection of objects with Marc for the auction at Sotheby's," Ive said. "Each piece represents the value of thoughtful design. What we create for each other is not only a comment on our culture, but of course, in many ways, defines it. (Red) is making a difference in the lives of millions of people, and we're humbled to make this contribution to such an important and worthy cause."

Sotheby's pointed out that the first (Red) auction raised over US$40 million, with a collection of original art. This year, the collection includes an Ive-designed red Mac Pro that's expected to fetch between US$40,000 and US$60,000, a cosmonaut suit worn on a Soviet space mission and an original Stormtrooper helmet from George Lucas' Star Wars.

Click through the gallery below to see some of what's on offer.

There's nothing fancy about the internals of these earbuds; Ive and Newson have instead beefed up the look, coating them in 18k rose gold specifically for the auction. They're not really for using, though — the one-of-a-kind item comes with a custom case for putting them on display.

By: Jony Ive and Marc Newson for Apple
Estimate: US$20,000-US$25,0000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Red Mac Pro

Unlike the new AU$3999 Mac Pro available for consumers, this one has a red extruded aluminium case.

By: Jony Ive and Marc Newson for Apple
Estimate: US$40,000-US$60,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Vintage hi-fi system

This hi-fi system designed by Dieter Rams consists of a 1964 TS 45 control unit, a 1965 TG 60 tape recorder and two 1965 L 450 speakers.

By: Dieter Rams for Braun
Estimate: US$10,000-US$15,0000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Memovox Tribute to Deep Sea, Europe watch

With a red dial specially for the auction, this Memovox Tribute to Deep Sea watch contains Jaeger-LeCoultre's Calibre 956 automatic alarm movement, a plexiglass crystal, 45 hours of power reserve and water resistance to 100 metres.

By: Jaeger-LeCoultre
Estimate: US$10,000-US$15,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Leica Rangefinder camera

Only one of this camera, custom-made by Ive and Newson, will be produced. It's made of over 1000 parts and took 725 hours to assemble. It has a Max. f-stop: 2.0 lens with a focal length of 50mm, based on LEICA APO-SUMMICRON-M 1:2/50mm ASPH.

By: Jony Ive and Marc Newson for Leica
Estimate: US$500,000-US$750,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Atmos 561 by Marc Newson clock

A customised version of the Atmos 561 clock created by Newson for Jaeger-LeCoultre features red hands, month indication and the Atmos 561 logo in red, with Cristal de Baccarat and Rhodium-plated feet. The Atmos 561 is unique in that it requires no battery replacement or charging — it draws its power from atmospheric temperature changes.

By: Marc Newson for Jaeger-LeCoultre
Estimate: US$20,000-US$30,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Star Wars original Stormtrooper helmet

From the original Star Wars trilogy, this prop is signed by creator George Lucas.

By: LucasFilm
Estimate: US$10,000-US$15,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Thermal window for the US space shuttle

Created by NASA and made of high-purity fused silica Corning 7980 glass for installation in a space shuttle, this window has been mounted on a custom stand designed by Ive and Newson.

By: Jony Ive and Marc Newson for NASA
Estimate: US$100,000-US$150,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Cosmonaut suit

This space suit, made in 1990, was actually worn in space during a Soviet space agency mission.

By: RD & PE Zvezda, Russia
Estimate: US$50,000-US$75,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Rila 400 Astrograph Telescope

This professional-quality, custom-order telescope has been fitted with a custom stand for the auction. It usually goes for US$24,695.

By: Giovanni Dal Lago for Officina Stellare, Italy
Estimate: US$20,000-US$30,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Airstream 16 Sport Travel trailer

This original aluminium trailer by Wally Byam, the founder of Airstream, has been refitted with a custom red interior and wheels.

By: Wally Byam
Estimate: US$50,000-US$70,000

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:

Model T51 racing wheel

The Type 51 was Bugatti's premier racing car in the 1930s. This original aluminium wheel, designed by the founder of Bugatti, has been fitted with a tyre by Ralph Lauren's Garage specialists for the auction.

By: Ettore Bugatti
Estimate: US$10,000-US$15,000

Head over to the Sotheby's auction page for more.

Updated:
Photo by: Sotheby's / Caption by:
Hot Galleries

Tech explained

Do you know what an OLED TV is?

CNET explains how OLED technology differs from regular TVs, and what you need to know to make the right shopping decision.

Hot Products