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Refurbished Apple Computers

3529 Views 10 Replies Latest reply: Nov 16, 2009 6:39 PM by chipperz RSS
Jimmy Kats Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
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Nov 12, 2009 3:51 PM
To anyone that has purchased a refurbished iMac or MacBook Pro,

Do they still function as if they were new? What all does "refurbished" mean? And finally, is it worth it?
Apple Mac Mini, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • stedman1 Level 8 Level 8 (49,835 points)
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    Nov 12, 2009 4:34 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    Hi Jimmy: I purchased a MacBook Pro over 3 years ago. It has worked flawlessly since then. The only cosmetic flaw I could see was that the letters "a & c" were missing from the bezel at the bottom of the display. For a saving of a few hundred dollars I can live with that.

    Hope this helps
    MBP 1.83, 2gB RAM, iMac (Al) 2.4, 4gB RAM, Mac OS X (10.6.2), iPod mini, iPod shuffle, iPod Touch, Apple TV
  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (22,055 points)
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    Nov 12, 2009 5:01 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    My white iMac is a refurb - I could not tell the difference between it and a new one. So far, there's only been a minor problem with the airport card (quickly replaced during an in home service call because I have Applecare) and the Macbook was a refurb as well - looked absolutely brand spanking new when I took it out of the box. These are my 4th and 5th refurbs. I actually think buying a refurb may be a better idea because whatever problem there was initially, the part or parts will have been replaced in the USA and the units tested thoroughly and, let's not forget the substantial savings.
    24" white 2.16GHz iMac 3 GB RAM (10.6.2), 13" white early '09 MB (10.6.2),, LaCie d2 DVDRW, 2 LaCie ext HD (1 Quadra), Wacom tablet
  • lynn117 Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
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    Nov 12, 2009 5:14 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    the only difference i found was it came in a plain brown box so if the apple box is worth a few hundred dollars buy new!
    imac intel 17" 1.5g old version, Mac OS X (10.4.7)
  • musashi88 Level 2 Level 2 (455 points)
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    Nov 12, 2009 6:53 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    My MacBook was like new. I could not tell that it was refurbished. AppleCare warranty exactly the same as a new one too. One year and a bit later still going strong as I use it everyday for teaching purposes.
     iMac 2.4 GHZ Alum 20" , Mac OS X (10.6.2),  Macbook 13.3"  iMac 2006 Intel 17" 1.8HZ  iPhone 3G
  • Kenichi Watanabe Level 7 Level 7 (29,995 points)
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    Nov 12, 2009 7:17 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    I think the refurbs may actually be more reliable on average than new. The new ones roll off the factory assembly line and go into a box for shipping. The assumption is that they work. For the refurbs, a problem was identified and it was repaired. Then the Mac as a whole is fully tested. I doubt the new ones receive that type of attention per unit.

    The inside parts may be slightly used, but the outside looks brand new. My white +late 2006+ iMac has been perfect. And it came with the same warranty and eligibility for AppleCare. Since I got it for $849, I did not even bother with AppleCare this time. I fully expect that it will serve me well for at least another three years, which would make it a six-year-old design by that time.

    Software is one difference. The pre-installed software is exactly off the included installation discs that originally came with that model. So if it shipped with Leopard, Leopard will be the pre-installed OS. You will also get a separate disc that allows you to upgrade the installation to Snow Leopard. For other bundled software, you get what was bundled with it originally. So if you get an iMac from 2008 that came with iLife 2008, it will come with that version instead of the current iLife 2009. At least, that's the way to was for my iMac. I bought the +late 2006+ model after Leopard was already out for a few months. It came with Tiger and iLife 2006 pre-installed, but had a +CPU Drop-In+ disc for upgrading to Leopard. However, I had to purchase iLife 2008 separately.
    Various including Intel iMac, Power Mac G5, Pismo w/G4, Power Mac 8100 w/G3, Mac OS X (10.6.1), also Mac OS X 10.4.11, Mac OS X 10.3.9, and Mac OS 9.x
  • DougDolde Calculating status...
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    Nov 13, 2009 8:49 AM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    A salesperson at an Apple store told me they are mostly returns that people decided not to keep under Apple's 14 day return policy. They are inspected and repackaged but can't be sold as new.
    Mac Pro Single Quad Nehalem, 16gb, 3tb, Mac OS X (10.5.7)
  • Sunny\'s mommy Level 2 Level 2 (470 points)
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    Nov 14, 2009 9:15 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    Abut 3 and a half years ago I bought my daughter a refurbished G4 iBook and never had any problems with it until shortly before the Apple Care was about to expire.
    G5iMac/MacBookPro/IntelG5, Mac OS X (10.6.1), Nano, 16/80 gig video; whole bunch of externals
  • LogicalVue Calculating status...
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    Nov 16, 2009 5:40 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    I've bought two refurbished Macs in the past few years. Both came with additional "stuff". My iMac came with a larger hard drive and more RAM in the video card (based on what was listed on the refurb page). It's now 2.5 years old and hasn't had any problems.

    My MacBook Pro (now 1.5 years old) arrived with a 7200rpm drive instead of the 5400rpm one. It's NVIDIA card died in September, but that's a fairly common problem because of an NVIDIA chip defect. Apple fixed it under the NVIDIA warranty extension. Otherwise it's been flawless.

    Like others have said, the only difference I've noticed is that it comes in a plain brown box instead of the shiny box.

    I always recommend people get a refurbished model first.
    MacBook Pro 2.4Ghz (Santa Rosa), Mac OS X (10.6.1), 6GB RAM, 500GB HD
  • chipperz Level 2 Level 2 (205 points)
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    Nov 16, 2009 6:39 PM (in response to Jimmy Kats)
    I haven't had a new iMac, or any other Mac, for years. My first G4 iMac was new, but every Mac since then has been a refurbished unit. Aside from the plain brown wrapper (sort of makes you feel you're getting something illegal), these refurbs are great. I have never had a problem with any of them, especially y G4 Power Book.
    13" Black MacBook, 2.4 GHz, 2GB RAM, 2.16 GHz 20' iMac 2 GB RAM, Mac OS X (10.6.2)


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