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Mikegs
Aug 8, 2011, 09:58 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?



v654321
Aug 8, 2011, 10:00 AM
I can't talk out of experience of selling since I only bought my Macbook Pro in March of last year, but I can tell you that comparable Windows laptops generally lose half of their value by the end of their first year.

urkel
Aug 8, 2011, 10:06 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?
The whole "Macs retain their value" thing was more true in the past than it is nowadays. They still maintain value better than most other computers but the problem here is the model you bought. Most people knew the Core2Duo was an outdated CPU choice so a refresh was going to come early so they can throw in SandyBridge and all those missing features.

Hellhammer
Aug 8, 2011, 10:08 AM
Never buy upgrades. You pay the premium $ for them but you don't get much off of them when selling. Also, there seems to be different opinions on this. Some people seem to have no problem paying ~$300-400 for their new Mac and they consider this is very small loss.

You will always lose money, that is a fact.

Bob Coxner
Aug 8, 2011, 10:12 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

I'm only going from memory but I seem to recall reading that base units hold their value better than ultimates.

I'm also guessing that a older model loses value faster when there's a major refresh rather than just a speed bump.

warfed
Aug 8, 2011, 10:14 AM
I can't talk out of experience of selling since I only bought my Macbook Pro in March of last year, but I can tell you that comparable Windows laptops generally lose half of their value by the end of their first year.

I wouldn't say "comparable" windows laptop lose half their value. Maybe acers and HPs. But not laptops that are comparable to macbooks.

Paulywauly
Aug 8, 2011, 10:28 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

Your particular case is most likley due to your 2010 MBA having a last gen processor.

Macs still hold there value very well compared to other manufacturers but you'll find that buying products with cutting edge components will hold there value longer than ones with older components. for example, the current Sandy Bridge Airs will probobly be worth more in a year than your 2010 Air is now (which have a 5 year old cpu architecture rather than the cutting edge stuff in the new ones).

v654321
Aug 8, 2011, 10:54 AM
I wouldn't say "comparable" windows laptop lose half their value. Maybe acers and HPs. But not laptops that are comparable to macbooks.

Actually, I only have experience with Dell laptops next to the MBP I currently own and aside from my very first Inspiron 3200 laptop I bought myself roughly 12 to 14 years ago, I only bought Dell's second hand, typically for 1/3rd the price. I always tried to go for a "last generation" one targeted to businesses since most of them were more than fast enough for my needs, though I always wanted durability. Other dells I owned were 2 ultraportables (Latitude C400) and a Latitude D630. I always paid way less than half the price of the original price. I did make the habit on maxing them out as much as possible with aftermarket updates. (I can still remember my surprise of maxing my Inspiron 3200's memory from 32MB to 144MB. Under Windows 2000 it was a totally new laptop, much faster! :))

You're right then as I don't have any experience with other brands either. :)

wegster
Aug 8, 2011, 11:08 AM
Macs do hold their value relatively well. Go to ebay, and look for a 2008/first unibody C2D model - search completed auctions. they generally are still going for around $1k USD. It's all relative, but I think they compare favorably vs most other 3+ year old notebooks.

As stated, you're always going to lose something, short of buying a few with the 20% off deal and selling them to someone at 5% off retail the same week, unopened, etc. and the C2D is definitely going to lose out vs SNB models.

badtzwang
Aug 8, 2011, 11:13 AM
Macs do hold their value relatively well. Go to ebay, and look for a 2008/first unibody C2D model - search completed auctions. they generally are still going for around $1k USD. It's all relative, but I think they compare favorably vs most other 3+ year old notebooks.

As stated, you're always going to lose something, short of buying a few with the 20% off deal and selling them to someone at 5% off retail the same week, unopened, etc. and the C2D is definitely going to lose out vs SNB models.

Yea ... but you gotta look at it this way. How much was the MBP to begin with? You gotta figure that the 2008 C2D models might have cost upwards of $2,000 at the time. That's a total loss of $1,000 which is pretty substantial and even more than what some PC laptops cost new.

LeakedDave
Aug 8, 2011, 11:16 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

My 13" Ultimate didn't even sell for $1099 on eBay. I paid $1800+ for that in December. More like a 40%+ loss. ;'(

When I bought it I was like "I'll get at least 1300 for this for sure."

Now I'm down 800 bones + eBay fees.

warfed
Aug 8, 2011, 11:21 AM
Actually, I only have experience with Dell laptops next to the MBP I currently own and aside from my very first Inspiron 3200 laptop I bought myself roughly 12 to 14 years ago, I only bought Dell's second hand, typically for 1/3rd the price. I always tried to go for a "last generation" one targeted to businesses since most of them were more than fast enough for my needs, though I always wanted durability. Other dells I owned were 2 ultraportables (Latitude C400) and a Latitude D630. I always paid way less than half the price of the original price. I did make the habit on maxing them out as much as possible with aftermarket updates. (I can still remember my surprise of maxing my Inspiron 3200's memory from 32MB to 144MB. Under Windows 2000 it was a totally new laptop, much faster! :))

You're right then as I don't have any experience with other brands either. :)

I'm sure it depends on the brand and target audience. I've never sold a 1 year old laptop so I can't say what the exact resale value is after a year. I generally sell laptops after 3-4 years and that's when I get 50-30% of their initial value.

Just doing a quick ebay (completed listings) and CL search for my 1 year old VAIO and it seems to be selling anywhere from 10-30% off original price depending on condition.

h00ligan
Aug 8, 2011, 11:27 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

Yes, most windows machines would lose 50-60%. Additionally, to offset that price drop, keep the machine one more year. First year is heavy depreciation, the second is mild.

The issue with this generation jump is that the technology moved massively. The speed doubled in some cases and certainly entry level models more than eclipsed high end last year.. which is why it's pretty pointless to buy top of the line if you like to change each year.

This generation well.. it's more of a hit to 2010 buyers.

I got $560 trade in at best buy for a 4 year old mac that cost me $2000.

drewyboy
Aug 8, 2011, 11:41 AM
just sold my mid-2007 white base macbook for $450. The biggest hit you'll get is if you have the newest model then a new model comes out and you try to sell. Otherwise, after that it slowly goes down. For me, not bad getting 50% back after 3.5 years of service (got it for christmas) so heck, I actually made $450 off my christmas present from 3.5 years ago :) That's why I tend to buy refurbished. I'm going to be selling my '10 i3 3.2 imac. Bought it for 1300. Plan on selling it for about ~1100-1200. If I had bought it new, it would have been 1500. Saved myself $200.

OneMike
Aug 8, 2011, 11:43 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

Macs do hold their values. The problem is that you are talking about 2010 to 2011. Your biggest hit is going to be in the first year and/or if a recent update comes out.

fletch33
Aug 8, 2011, 11:47 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

bought the 2010 11" Air on Craigs for $800 5 months ago and sold it yesterday for $850. that is the only way you can "win" is to buy used and sell at the right time.

until the last couple years i would buy a new loaded Macbook every year and it would generally cost me about $200 or so which i felt was more than fair.

also keep in mind that my Macbooks would come with nothing but OSX and leave with iWork, iLife, Word, Photoshop, etc... so that will add a ton of value if you own those apps and leave them there when you sell it.

YEEZY
Aug 8, 2011, 11:53 AM
Upgrades are useful, only if you intend to keep the computer for awhile. Otherwise, might as well buy a bigger computer with similar specs and sell that at a higher price.

unagimiyagi
Aug 8, 2011, 01:00 PM
Macs hold their value very well compared to PCs. Sonys would be the worst b/c of their sky sky high prices, and then how they fall like a rock later on the used market.

Dell's are cheap to begin with, so the loss that you would take by selling it is minimized.

The challenge with macs is that these are regarded as premium products--even on the used market. They are marketed that way from the beginning by Apple, so the extra scrutiny is warranted. I.e., if you say your products are superior, then pickier customer expectations are ok. Macs are fragile beauties b/c the aluminum dents. And you will pick up dents, mark my words, no matter how careful you are. People also tend to be more hypercritical of any other flaws like this, screen quality, battery life, noise, etc. So if you sell your used mac, you'd probably want to note the dents on it.

adnoh
Aug 8, 2011, 02:06 PM
Somebody told you right

h00ligan
Aug 8, 2011, 02:13 PM
just sold my mid-2007 white base macbook for $450. The biggest hit you'll get is if you have the newest model then a new model comes out and you try to sell. Otherwise, after that it slowly goes down. For me, not bad getting 50% back after 3.5 years of service (got it for christmas) so heck, I actually made $450 off my christmas present from 3.5 years ago :) That's why I tend to buy refurbished. I'm going to be selling my '10 i3 3.2 imac. Bought it for 1300. Plan on selling it for about ~1100-1200. If I had bought it new, it would have been 1500. Saved myself $200.

I can barely get that for a mid 2007 pro on craigslist! How long did it take to sell?

Driver8
Aug 8, 2011, 02:17 PM
If you want to upgrade every year, be prepared to pay around 400 dollars to "lease" your mac. Computers in general depreciate pretty fast because they fail easily and are expensive to repair. I read in consumer reports, the best thing to buy used is a car, the worst thing to buy used is a laptop.

thelead
Aug 8, 2011, 02:31 PM
The more macs become popular the lower the resale value will be. Also, 3 points, 1) you paid for upgrades 2) The new release was a huge upgrade and 3) you bought at full retail value.

If you bought a base model (i.e. $1300 model), the new model still had a C2D, and maybe bought refurbished (say, at $1150), you probably could sell it for ~$900 (after fees) and you would have only lost $250 max.

Otherwise, yes, Macs do hold value pretty well.

fletch33
Aug 8, 2011, 02:35 PM
If you want to upgrade every year, be prepared to pay around 400 dollars to "lease" your mac. Computers in general depreciate pretty fast because they fail easily and are expensive to repair. I read in consumer reports, the best thing to buy used is a car, the worst thing to buy used is a laptop.

have to 110% disagree. as i mentioned above i waited 6 months for the Air to be out for a bit and bought it used on Craigs for $800 and then sold it for $850 5 months or so later. bought another 2.5GHz 4GB ram 13" Pro over a year ago again on Craigs for $750 and sold it about a year later for $900.

only time i have not gotten my money back or made money is when i buy them new and when i buy new ones i sell them after about a year and generally loose about $200-$250 dollars. have been doing this for a very long time with a lot of macs and it has always been the same.

you can be a smart buyer and also a smart seller. sometimes not both :)

warfed
Aug 8, 2011, 03:23 PM
Macs hold their value very well compared to PCs. Sonys would be the worst b/c of their sky sky high prices, and then how they fall like a rock later on the used market.


Source? Go to ebay and see the completed listings for used Vaio Zs.... There aren't nearly as many for sale as MBA but they hold their value pretty good, better than the 30% OP has stated.

neile45
Aug 8, 2011, 04:33 PM
I'd say they hold their values very well. I bought an HP 13" 2 years ago for $400, it was refurbished, and the cheapest one at retail at the time was $550. Now I can't even sell it for $200.

I've bought refurbished Dell laptops for my wife for her last 3 computers. This last one, the lowest price I saw new was $1500, and I paid only $900 - now take into consideration that you only get $100 off refurb Apples, and that should give you a hint on the resale value.

Apple OC
Aug 8, 2011, 04:51 PM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

Macs hold their value better than any other laptops ... imagine if that was an 11" Acer you were hoping to sell ... down 60% at best.

Lurchdubious
Aug 8, 2011, 05:06 PM
My experience is that Macs hold do hold their value quite well. I sold my 5 yr old blackbook for $500 ($1400 new). No previous Windows PC's I had even lasted 5 yrs, much less being re-sellable.

My 5 month old 13" Air sold for $1,000 a few days ago, giving me enough to justify the new base 13," which I love and will keep for two years minimum.

wordoflife
Aug 8, 2011, 05:13 PM
I wouldn't recommend selling short term. Keep your Mac for a few years and then sell it.
At least they sell though - I didn't even know people bought second handed PCs.

KPOM
Aug 8, 2011, 05:26 PM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

The MacBook Air line has historically lost its value more quickly than any other in the lineup, because each generation has brought significant changes. As with any technology, buy it because you want it, and not for resale value. All tech loses value quickly. It's just a matter of how quickly.

rdowty
Aug 8, 2011, 05:26 PM
Mac's do retain their value better but as you noted (and a friend of mine who upgraded his Air) this was a bit of a special case where there were drastic improvements model-to-model. If the new MBA was still C2D and slightly faster you'd have gotten more more money. Owners who are buying now will see that when the next update is released unless SSD prices decline and 256gb becomes standard.

Dominus Mortem
Aug 8, 2011, 07:03 PM
Overall I think they do seem to hold value. However, they hold value well in the 2nd year on, not the first year. Here's an analogy that I think illustrates how to view this: Say you go to a Porsche dealer and buy a brand new 911 for $140,000. The dealer will say "these cars hold their value very well" but what could you sell that Porsche for after you drive it home? 140k, no. 130k, no. you'd probably have to sell it around 115k. If you try to sell that Porsche 4 years later and get 80-85k you've lost +/-40% or so of its value, or about 10% per year. As it ages the loss doesn't decline as rapidly - the curve smooths out. Laptops have a shorter lifespan so they depreciate badly the first year and the curve smooths out over years 2-4 but you'd better sell it around year 4 or it will start to rapidly depreciate again. Once they get over 5 years it seems they are are worth less than 15% of their original value.

This depreciation is worse with PC laptops.

tdurden12
Aug 8, 2011, 09:46 PM
My 13" Ultimate didn't even sell for $1099 on eBay. I paid $1800+ for that in December. More like a 40%+ loss. ;'(

When I bought it I was like "I'll get at least 1300 for this for sure."

Now I'm down 800 bones + eBay fees.

Wow, you could have just bought a 2010 11" mba and then another 2011 11" mba!

tdurden12
Aug 8, 2011, 09:50 PM
have to 110% disagree. as i mentioned above i waited 6 months for the Air to be out for a bit and bought it used on Craigs for $800 and then sold it for $850 5 months or so later. bought another 2.5GHz 4GB ram 13" Pro over a year ago again on Craigs for $750 and sold it about a year later for $900.

only time i have not gotten my money back or made money is when i buy them new and when i buy new ones i sell them after about a year and generally loose about $200-$250 dollars. have been doing this for a very long time with a lot of macs and it has always been the same.

you can be a smart buyer and also a smart seller. sometimes not both :)

I think you are both a smart buy and a smart seller, but this also takes a lot of time both migrating files and then going and meeting with strangers, with the risk that they might be criminals. You also have to take into account the value of your time in doing this. If you spend 10 hours doing these transactions and your wage is $20 an hour, your opportunity cost is substantial... For me, its just not worth the trouble, but you might find the process more fun :)

misterneums
Aug 8, 2011, 10:43 PM
I look at it this way: After a few years, you can barely give away a PC laptop. While a Macbook still can be sold for a decent percent.

newdeal
Aug 9, 2011, 06:08 AM
what people get for them and what they think they are worth are sometimes differant. People around here try to sell 2009 macbook pros for $1000 when you can get a refurb for 1049 plus tax on a 2011 model. I base what its worth by what it goes for on the refurb store. List it at that price so people save the tax and go up to $50-100 lower if you need to

peterdevries
Aug 9, 2011, 06:15 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

A MAC still retains value quite well. I had a discussion with a reseller a few weeks ago when the new MBA was introduced. I have a 13" MBA Ultimate or whatever people call it, and it lost 30% also. The guy said that the market was immediately swamped with second hand 2010 MBA's that the price was going down rapidly. He said this happens almost always when a major upgrade is introduced. Usually the price even goes a up bit again after a while.

I decided to keep my 13" and forget about the faster processor speed and thunderbolt. I bought an 27" LCD display in stead with mini-displayport. Great buy.

s2dio
Aug 9, 2011, 06:33 AM
Never buy upgrades. You pay the premium $ for them but you don't get much off of them when selling. Also, there seems to be different opinions on this. Some people seem to have no problem paying ~$300-400 for their new Mac and they consider this is very small loss.

You will always lose money, that is a fact.

Do you mean "never buy ultimate models" or upgrades like RAM/HDD or both?

UCF Sam
Aug 9, 2011, 08:33 AM
Do you mean "never buy ultimate models" or upgrades like RAM/HDD or both?

It really depends on what the upgrade is. In the case of the current MacBook Air, getting 4GB ram will not hurt resale value, in fact it will most likely help as having 2GB of non upgradable RAM will be even less desirable in the future. On the other hand, if you plan on spending the extra money to get a core i7 over an i5, don't expect to get that difference back when reselling, you will not get much more, if anything at all, for an i7 over an i5 in a year's time. As for the SSD, because the 256GB drive is so overpriced, I'd say in the long run, you'd lose out there reselling as well.

If you want to minimize loss when reselling, the best combo would be the base 13' or the 128GB 11' with nothing else upgraded.

ZipZap
Aug 9, 2011, 08:49 AM
have to 110% disagree. as i mentioned above i waited 6 months for the Air to be out for a bit and bought it used on Craigs for $800 and then sold it for $850 5 months or so later. bought another 2.5GHz 4GB ram 13" Pro over a year ago again on Craigs for $750 and sold it about a year later for $900.

only time i have not gotten my money back or made money is when i buy them new and when i buy new ones i sell them after about a year and generally loose about $200-$250 dollars. have been doing this for a very long time with a lot of macs and it has always been the same.

you can be a smart buyer and also a smart seller. sometimes not both :)

This is a "life" rule of thumb that works across the board for any purchases. in the Apple world, the only thing I have seen that might be the exception are iphones going to new model from the most recent model. Of course, factor in accessories that no longer fit the new model...and I lost.

ZipZap
Aug 9, 2011, 08:51 AM
My experience is that Macs hold do hold their value quite well. I sold my 5 yr old blackbook for $500 ($1400 new). No previous Windows PC's I had even lasted 5 yrs, much less being re-sellable.

My 5 month old 13" Air sold for $1,000 a few days ago, giving me enough to justify the new base 13," which I love and will keep for two years minimum.

I'll wait for the next Macbook Air next year, as I bet it will be even better.

misterneums
Aug 9, 2011, 09:04 AM
I'll wait for the next Macbook Air next year, as I bet it will be even better.

Well, I'd certainly hope they wouldn't release a product that was inferior.

loverumors
Aug 10, 2011, 01:18 AM
just traded in my 4 years old black macbook at Bestbuy today. It was 1499 at the time i bought it. 2.2C2D/2G ram/160g HD. I got $502 STORE credit for it. IMO not so bad for a 4 years old laptop. Bought the 11 inch MBA 4g ram/128ssd for like 700 more. Not so bad I guess. But just like lots of people on here, the wifi on the mine keep dropping. Only on the "N" connection. "G" is fine. weird.

JonLa
Aug 10, 2011, 06:51 AM
And of course there's nothing wrong with a 2010 Ultimate 13" Air that should really make you want to sell it after only a year... In day to day browsing, emailing, typing, you'll barely notice the difference between it and the 2011; if you're doing something that's processor-intensive you probably shouldn't have bought a C2D anyway...

VMMan
Aug 13, 2011, 04:26 PM
@OP,

Looking at Craigslist or the current auction prices on eBay will NOT give you a sense of the actual values of used Macs.

You need to look at Macs' prices that completed sales.

Go to eBay and make sure that under the "Advanced" search, you check the "Completed Listings Only" option.

This will show the actual final sale prices which will give you a great way to judge the recent market prices.

The last gen MBA owners probably did take a greater than usual depreciation hit, but look at the prices for the MBPs on the used market. Compared to HP, Dell, Acer, Apple laptops hold their value very well.

KPOM
Aug 13, 2011, 05:16 PM
Do you mean "never buy ultimate models" or upgrades like RAM/HDD or both?

What he is saying is that if you know you are going to upgrade every year or two, buy the cheapest model that will last that long. "Ultimate" models lose their value more quickly than base models. Remember, the cost to Apple is about $60 for every extra $100 they charge. That margin is the first to go.

2 years from now, as far as resale, it won't matter much whether your 2011 MacBook Air has a 1.6GHz i5 or a 1.8GHz i7. The i7 might get $50 more (maybe) compared to the extra $150 it cost today. Even 1 year from now it won't make that much difference. Buy "ultimates" or "upgrades" if you need the space or you intend to keep it for a while, though even then, arguably you may be better off financially with a mid-range model that "does the job."

Consider that in November 2008, I purchased an "Ultimate" MacBook Air of its day for $2400 (1.8GHz C2D, 128GB SSD). The "base" was about $1400. I sold it 2 years later for about $800, which was a decline in value of $1600, greater than the purchase price of the base. Purely from a financial perspective, the base would have been a better purchase since I could have given it away and have had more money. I went for the Ultimate because I wanted the SSD, and not because I thought it would hold its value. That's the same with the 11" Ultimate I purchased last month.

lovelaptops
Aug 13, 2011, 10:15 PM
[QUOTE=fletch33;13137334]bought the 2010 11" Air on Craigs for $800 5 months ago and sold it yesterday for $850. that is the only way you can "win" is to buy used and sell at the right time./QUOTE]


That holds true for all tech resales. Like cars, if you buy new at full price, even 30% depreciation in a year is considered good. But if you buy the used one at 30% off the new 9 months later (eg, buy 2010 MBA 13 now), you will lose little in a year, as those suckers are still very fast and, other than the unlit keyboard, they look and feel and respond like the 2011 SB version.

Not to repeat, but Apple created huge depreciation problems for buyers of last year's MBA and MBP 13s buy using 2 gen old C2D cpus in 2010 and jumping to very current SB cpus less than a year later. I don't know of any windows notebook that so dramatically and quickly obsoleted a product in less than months. Still, buy the 2010 MBP or MBA at today's prices, and you still get an excellent computer, more than fast enough for 90% of users. Next year, when you want to move up (again, to a 2011 vintage, not 2012), the depreciation hit should be more like 15-20%.

hcho3
Aug 13, 2011, 10:21 PM
It holds better value than other PC laptops. But, what did you expect, 90%?

Technology advances so fast.

Every CPU and GPU get outdated so damn quick. There is also next big thing.

ThomasBoss
Aug 13, 2011, 10:32 PM
My old, very slow PowerBook G4 sold on Gumtree (an Australian version of Craigslist) for around $200 and I was quite happy with that price after searching eBay to find them all around that price point.
On eBay some Acer Extensa notebooks are going for $300 and compared to the PowerBook make it look like a super computer, so yes I guess Macs retain their value a bit better than most PCs.

PaulWog
Aug 13, 2011, 10:48 PM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

Macs do retain their value. However, you have to look at the market for any particular item.

A laptop losing only 30% of its value in a year is actually quite amazing. You won't find that in any other laptops. Try buying anything and see what it sells for a year later. You won't get $700 for a $1000 laptop, I guarantee you. If you buy a $1000 laptop today (any Windows-based laptop), you'll get $500 for it in a year if it was a good buy in the first place. That's no fault of the Windows-based laptops... it's just that when it comes to Macs, the market is easier to resell in.

The reason why your Macbook Air lost 30% of its value in a year is because of the major leap the Macbook Airs took recently. They jumped from old C2D processors to up-to-date Quad-Core i5/i7 Sandy Bridge solutions. Had the processors jumped from i3/i5 processors (previous gen) to Sandy Bridge, you probably would've only seen a 20% drop or something minor.

So you really do have to look at the situation. Part of the reason why I bought into the Macbook Air this year is because next year's release likely won't be considered as large a jump. I'm only expecting a resale value of something like 75% though (not including taxes)... so I think I'll get $850-$900 on the resale of my Air. I might get less though. Who knows.

Think of it this way though:

If you resell for 70% of what you paid every year and get a new Macbook Air every year, then you get a total of 4 Macbook Airs for the cost of having bought two. In the end you get to keep one. So 2011 you get one, 2012 you get another, 2013 you get your third, 2014 you get your last one in that three year cycle. Total cost is the cost of two Macbook Airs. What do you get out of it? Four years of warranty (that's better than 3-year Applecare), and you get to keep up on all the new stuff. Four years is about how long I keep any given laptop anyways, so why not just resell every year right?

haruhiko
Aug 13, 2011, 10:56 PM
The truth is, nobody wants to buy a computer with dead slow Core 2 Duo in 2011 with a less than 30% discount.

aeboi
Aug 13, 2011, 11:08 PM
Just sold my 2010 13" base for $800, probably could have gotten more if I wanted to since there were quite a few people interested but I'm impatient and I had purchased it for a low price. Still better than the equivalent windows laptops I've sold in the past.

Jiten
Aug 13, 2011, 11:10 PM
The large drop in value has probably a lot to do with the fact that Apple moved to the iCore series from the now obsolete core2duo. A few years back when Apple was simply moving from Core2duo to faster Core2duo the drop in value was nominal but its a different story when the update provides twice as much power as the old line.

Same thing happened when Apple moved from PowerPc to Intel.

FieldingMellish
Aug 14, 2011, 04:43 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

The value is in using older models to good effect no matter how many revisions come along trumpeting that you need it. That is, until Uncle Steve decides to overhaul something that makes the older Macs obsolete. Like changes to Power PC, changes to Intel, system software revisions. That stuff forces legions of loyal Mac users to pony up and leave their legacy gear.

robbieduncan
Aug 14, 2011, 04:59 AM
But my maxed out MBA 2010 11" seems to have lost 30% of its value in less than a year... Bummer, that's a big loss if i upgrade to a 2011 model. Do you consider 30% a relatively low loss for a laptop?

How much would a Dell or an Acer lose in 1 year? I suspect >50%.

qwerf123
Aug 14, 2011, 05:33 AM
How much would a Dell or an Acer lose in 1 year? I suspect >50%.

I bought a Dell PC and could only get people to pay 40% of what I paid about 13 months done the line so in the end didn't bother selling it.