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Applepie047704
Apr 5, 2013, 02:54 AM
I really need a MacBook air for school, I have a budget of $450 anyone have any suggestions on where to get one?



justperry
Apr 5, 2013, 03:05 AM
$450 is low and won't get you much.

Ebay

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_sacat=0&_nkw=macbook%20air&_mPrRngCbx=1&_udlo=300&_udhi=500

Many are just screens and they already go for quit a bit.

Applepie047704
Apr 5, 2013, 03:07 AM
Thanks I'll keep looking if anyone else has any suggestions Plz reply :)

Project538
Apr 5, 2013, 09:30 AM
I hate to be the one that brings this up, but I doubt you "need" a MacBook Air for school. If your budget is only $450, you might be better off looking at something actually in that price range. Any MacBook Air you get for that price is probably going to be outdated hardware, have something wrong with it, or both. A quick search of mine shows that even the 2008 Airs seem to be going for around $600 on eBay.

notjustjay
Apr 5, 2013, 09:41 AM
Agreed, for $450 you could either buy a (very) used MacBook off eBay, or you could buy a Windows ultrabook that is relatively thin and light (although, the thinnest and lightest ultrabooks are priced very similarly to Airs).

Alternative options: if you don't need an Air, you can get a used MacBook Pro, or any number of Windows laptops.

Or, just keep saving your dollars! It'll be worth it!

Consultant
Apr 5, 2013, 10:07 AM
That's like asking: I got $5k budget where to buy Mercedes?

Anyway, you don't want the first generation (new ones more powerful). You should buy one that has SSD. You can currently find MBA starting $850 in the Apple refurb store:
http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/specialdeals/mac

LeeM
Apr 5, 2013, 10:18 AM
save some more money, youll regret buying the cheapest mac you can find

jfrancis04
Apr 5, 2013, 10:53 AM
I really need a MacBook air for school, I have a budget of $450 anyone have any suggestions on where to get one?
If it's for school, then you're eligible for the education discount. That brings the base 11in model down to $949.

If you purchase it during their back to school promotion, you'll probably have a $100 gift card you can sell to someone for around $85.

That puts you at $864 (plus tax) for a brand new computer. Do you have an old computer you could sell to put toward the cost of this? Maybe an old game system you aren't using anymore?

If you know you want a Mac, then save to get a Mac. I wouldn't recommend buying used unless it's refurbished from Apple or still has Apple Care.

sostoobad
Apr 5, 2013, 11:48 AM
Here are some very recent sales on ebay

2011 11" air $ 561.00 nice shape
2012 11" air $636.00 nice shape
2010 13" air $600.00 also nice

2008 13" air $454.00 avg shape, no battery
2008 13" air $550.00 nice shape orig box and charger

If you can use the 11" you can get a nice machine not too far away from your 450.00

TouchMint.com
Apr 5, 2013, 11:58 AM
http://slickdeals.net/?sdtid=5950800&sdop=1&sdpid=58681618&sdfid=9&lno=1&trd=http+www+ebay+com+itm+Asus+15+6+&u2=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fitm%2FAsus-15-6-Notebook-Intel-Core-i5-3210M-2-5Ghz-4GB-DDR3-Ram-500GB-HDD-Win8HP-%2F370790971617%3Fpt%3DLH_DefaultDomain_0%26var%3D%26hash%3Ditem5654dd38e1



Asus $399 laptop no tax no shipping

•Intel Core i5-3210M 2.5GHz Processor
•15.6" LED backlit (1366x768) Display
•4GB DDR3 Memory
•500GB Hard Drive
•Intel HD 4000 Graphics
◦2x USB 3.0
◦1x USB 2.0
◦1x HDMI
•Super-Multi DVDRW Dual Layer
•WiFi N
•Webcam
•6-Cell Battery
•Windows 8 Home Premium 64-Bit


in your budget and a pretty nice NEW computer :)

Mrbobb
Apr 5, 2013, 12:00 PM
Reminding u one more time: When u buy a used laptop, more often than not the battery needs replacement soon, so that's another $100+

LeeM
Apr 5, 2013, 12:11 PM
http://slickdeals.net/?sdtid=5950800&sdop=1&sdpid=58681618&sdfid=9&lno=1&trd=http+www+ebay+com+itm+Asus+15+6+&u2=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fitm%2FAsus-15-6-Notebook-Intel-Core-i5-3210M-2-5Ghz-4GB-DDR3-Ram-500GB-HDD-Win8HP-%2F370790971617%3Fpt%3DLH_DefaultDomain_0%26var%3D%26hash%3Ditem5654dd38e1



Asus $399 laptop no tax no shipping

•Intel Core i5-3210M 2.5GHz Processor
•15.6" LED backlit (1366x768) Display
•4GB DDR3 Memory
•500GB Hard Drive
•Intel HD 4000 Graphics
◦2x USB 3.0
◦1x USB 2.0
◦1x HDMI
•Super-Multi DVDRW Dual Layer
•WiFi N
•Webcam
•6-Cell Battery
•Windows 8 Home Premium 64-Bit


in your budget and a pretty nice NEW computer :)

thats physically identical to a samsung my girlfriend has, except the lid colour and asus on the screen.
internally the same as well, hers runs well. id recommend that over an old second hand 11" air. love my 11" but wouldnt have it as an only computer.

Mrbobb
Apr 5, 2013, 01:30 PM
Asus $399 laptop no tax no shipping


If they had this last year, I may had stayed with Windows.

Mac_Max
Apr 5, 2013, 01:34 PM
Apple does have interest free financing. If you pay for 1/3 of the laptop the payments over 12-18 months aren't too bad. Also if you get any extra financial aid you could easily pay for another chunk (if not all) of the laptop.

Project538
Apr 5, 2013, 02:12 PM
Apple does have interest free financing. If you pay for 1/3 of the laptop the payments over 12-18 months aren't too bad. Also if you get any extra financial aid you could easily pay for another chunk (if not all) of the laptop.

I really wouldn't suggest that the OP go that route. He's buying this for college, which is already expensive in its own right. With purchases like computers, you really should just pay for them outright. Don't buy stuff you can't afford.

DisplacedMic
Apr 6, 2013, 08:47 AM
I really need a MacBook air for school, I have a budget of $450 anyone have any suggestions on where to get one?

i'd save up a few hundred more before buying a used mba if i were you.
for $450 you get a pretty decent portable laptop but probably not a Mac.

----------

I really wouldn't suggest that the OP go that route. He's buying this for college, which is already expensive in its own right. With purchases like computers, you really should just pay for them outright. Don't buy stuff you can't afford.

agree 100%

Act your Wage!

GoCubsGo
Apr 6, 2013, 09:14 AM
Check Craigslist. At that price, it could be questionable as to where it comes from though.

Stetrain
Apr 6, 2013, 09:52 AM
Gonna agree with some of the others in this thread. $450 will at most buy you a fairly old, fairly slow Macbook Air with lots of cycles on the battery.

Also since the Air isn't very upgrade-able you'll be stuck forever with however much RAM it comes with, which will probably only be 2GB in that price range.

I think you are better off finding something that you can buy brand new for that price that will have a current generation processor and a new warranty:

http://www.anandtech.com/show/6880/best-budget-laptops-april-2013

chrisrosemusic1
Apr 6, 2013, 10:16 AM
Put the $450 as a down payment and finance the rest to get a new mac with warranty? That or use Apple's own finance - it has a relatively low APR and you'll get instant dispatch once you've digitally signed the agreement.

Project538
Apr 6, 2013, 01:41 PM
Put the $450 as a down payment and finance the rest to get a new mac with warranty? That or use Apple's own finance - it has a relatively low APR and you'll get instant dispatch once you've digitally signed the agreement.

Bad idea. Don't finance something like a computer. OP, buy within your means.

sostoobad
Apr 6, 2013, 05:33 PM
Bad idea. Don't finance something like a computer. OP, buy within your means.

Why is this a bad idea, interest free financing is bad ? whats good 10% financing. We don't know the OPs finances. If he put even 300.00 down on a new 11" 2012 Air @999.00 maybe less if best buy has it on sale, Apple will match that, anyway, that leaves 699.00 balance over 12 months is a little less than $59.00/month. Personally I would keep the 450 cash and pay $84/month
for 12 months. I will take a no interest loan every time.

chrisrosemusic1
Apr 6, 2013, 07:31 PM
Why is this a bad idea, interest free financing is bad ? whats good 10% financing. We don't know the OPs finances. If he put even 300.00 down on a new 11" 2012 Air @999.00 maybe less if best buy has it on sale, Apple will match that, anyway, that leaves 699.00 balance over 12 months is a little less than $59.00/month. Personally I would keep the 450 cash and pay $84/month
for 12 months. I will take a no interest loan every time.

Correct. I really don't understand why people are so anti finance with computers. Surely you are going to keep the $1000+ thing for a couple of years anyway.

Marv89
Apr 6, 2013, 09:48 PM
Why is this a bad idea, interest free financing is bad ? whats good 10% financing. We don't know the OPs finances. If he put even 300.00 down on a new 11" 2012 Air @999.00 maybe less if best buy has it on sale, Apple will match that, anyway, that leaves 699.00 balance over 12 months is a little less than $59.00/month. Personally I would keep the 450 cash and pay $84/month
for 12 months. I will take a no interest loan every time.

yeah because college students can easily afford 84$ a month... and if he can, can he still do it in 6 or 8 months ? Never get a loan if you don't have to...

sostoobad
Apr 7, 2013, 06:13 AM
yeah because college students can easily afford 84$ a month... and if he can, can he still do it in 6 or 8 months ? Never get a loan if you don't have to...

I was just pointing out the monthly payment, if the OP or anyone for that matter can't afford the payment, then thats different. BUT " never get a loan if you don't have to " depends on the situation, if Apple offered a cash discount, different story, but what they are saying is pay us 999.00 cash for the Air OR finance it for FREE over 12 months....assuming one can afford either option
Take the FREE financing...why wouldn't you, why put cash up front into a depreciating asset, when easy monthly payments can be made for free over time.

Here is a real example, friends of mine own a house worth about 500k
they came into about 90k cash and the husband asked my opinion on what to do with it, the wife wanted to refinance the house for a lower payment. I asked him can you afford the payment now, he said yes. I said putting that money into the mortgage won't make your house worth any more money. I would put it in the stock market, or bonds, carefully invested by a professional.

Well that was about 7 yrs ago, they refinanced and guess what happened to the real estate market...it went down...their 90k....GONE.

Like I said it depends on the situation.

cirus
Apr 7, 2013, 09:42 AM
Really, $450 is not much. Buy a nice new windows notebook instead of an old macbook air.

JHUFrank
Apr 7, 2013, 07:01 PM
I'm with most of the others on here, buy a cheap Windows ultrabook.

stchman
Apr 7, 2013, 10:02 PM
I really need a MacBook air for school, I have a budget of $450 anyone have any suggestions on where to get one?

You might get a heavily used 2009 model. I've seen some open box and refurb MBAs for $900.

Try Craigslist.

AbyssImpact
Apr 7, 2013, 10:08 PM
I wouldn't go Windows like many are suggesting in this thread. Mac OS is the best out there, nothing like Windows. Windows is garbage. Whatever you do, DO NOT buy a Windows laptop. You'll regret it later in life. Once you go Mac, you never go back.

stchman
Apr 7, 2013, 10:17 PM
I wouldn't go Windows like many are suggesting in this thread. Mac OS is the best out there, nothing like Windows. Windows is garbage. Whatever you do, DO NOT buy a Windows laptop. You'll regret it later in life. Once you go Mac, you never go back.

Not to start a conflict, but Windows OS is far from garbage. I do agree that Apple laptops are far better built than Windows based laptops, they cost ~2X more.

I've been using OS X now for over 9 months, and there is nothing that OS X can do that Windows cannot.

With the OP's budget, a MBA is not looking very likely and he'll have to settle for Windows based laptop.

StockDC2
Apr 7, 2013, 10:20 PM
I wouldn't go Windows like many are suggesting in this thread. Mac OS is the best out there, nothing like Windows. Windows is garbage. Whatever you do, DO NOT buy a Windows laptop. You'll regret it later in life. Once you go Mac, you never go back.

I sense a nut hugger.

asting
Apr 7, 2013, 11:01 PM
I really wouldn't suggest that the OP go that route. He's buying this for college, which is already expensive in its own right. With purchases like computers, you really should just pay for them outright. Don't buy stuff you can't afford.

Where did you get college out of the OP? Based on the tone, budget, and "necessity" of the macbook air I'm guessing it's not post secondary.

notjustjay
Apr 8, 2013, 09:54 AM
Why is this a bad idea, interest free financing is bad ? ... Personally I would keep the 450 cash and pay $84/month
for 12 months. I will take a no interest loan every time.

Correct. I really don't understand why people are so anti finance with computers. Surely you are going to keep the $1000+ thing for a couple of years anyway.

"Free" money is a good thing if you can do it, and if it works out for you, more power to you.

However, let me tell you my story of how I was completely screwed over by one of these plans. Yes, it was my own fault for not reading the fine print, but the damage was done.

I ordered a 12" PowerBook G4 back in 2003. I was in university, tiny income, poor credit rating, back then Canadian dollar was nowhere near US par and Mac prices were that much more insane. The PowerBook I wanted rang up at about $2700. I couldn't afford that all at once, but Apple's website offered a 0% financing deal. So I applied, and bought the PowerBook, configured to my liking.

While I was checking out, Apple's website offered me that page with the list of addons. "Final Cut Express - Add $149" was one of the options. Since I wanted to do video editing, I checked the box.

So, Final Cut Express shipped out immediately and $149 (plus tax) was charged to the loan account. A few weeks later, my BTO PowerBook was shipped, and the remaining $2700 was charged.

Ah, but the fine print said that 0% financing only applied to the FIRST ITEM charged to the account. The rest? Standard loan terms -- at 28.8%.

So I got an interest free loan on $150 and paid a TON of interest on $2700 that I had to pay down slowly. Combine that with some payroll screwups at my university and the bottom line is it took YEARS to climb out of that hole. I never tallied up the total interest paid. I don't want to know. :(

So, by all means finance if you want, but be careful. Offering 0% to one person means totally screwing someone else to make up the difference. Don't become the other guy.

ritmomundo
Apr 8, 2013, 11:19 AM
Or, buy an iPad. You didn't specify your uses, but for all your basic computing needs, it will perform just fine. Plus, if you jailbreak it, you'll be able to do some advanced computing stuffs as well.

StockDC2
Apr 8, 2013, 11:29 AM
Just keep checking Craigslist and you'll fall upon a deal. I purchased my late 2010 MBA 13 in perfect condition (literally) for $250.

sostoobad
Apr 8, 2013, 02:54 PM
"Free" money is a good thing if you can do it, and if it works out for you, more power to you.

However, let me tell you my story of how I was completely screwed over by one of these plans. Yes, it was my own fault for not reading the fine print, but the damage was done.

I ordered a 12" PowerBook G4 back in 2003. I was in university, tiny income, poor credit rating, back then Canadian dollar was nowhere near US par and Mac prices were that much more insane. The PowerBook I wanted rang up at about $2700. I couldn't afford that all at once, but Apple's website offered a 0% financing deal. So I applied, and bought the PowerBook, configured to my liking.

While I was checking out, Apple's website offered me that page with the list of addons. "Final Cut Express - Add $149" was one of the options. Since I wanted to do video editing, I checked the box.

So, Final Cut Express shipped out immediately and $149 (plus tax) was charged to the loan account. A few weeks later, my BTO PowerBook was shipped, and the remaining $2700 was charged.

Ah, but the fine print said that 0% financing only applied to the FIRST ITEM charged to the account. The rest? Standard loan terms -- at 28.8%.

So I got an interest free loan on $150 and paid a TON of interest on $2700 that I had to pay down slowly. Combine that with some payroll screwups at my university and the bottom line is it took YEARS to climb out of that hole. I never tallied up the total interest paid. I don't want to know. :(

So, by all means finance if you want, but be careful. Offering 0% to one person means totally screwing someone else to make up the difference. Don't become the other guy.
OUCH, that hurts..the way the apple financing works is if you do a 12 month interest free loan and pay it off BEFORE the due date...no interest, pay it after that all interest is accrued to the bill from day one, i think it is 18%

notjustjay
Apr 8, 2013, 03:24 PM
OUCH, that hurts..the way the apple financing works is if you do a 12 month interest free loan and pay it off BEFORE the due date...no interest, pay it after that all interest is accrued to the bill from day one, i think it is 18%

That's how I assumed my particular financing deal worked, too, but it wasn't. I guess I didn't study the fine print enough. :(

Mine wasn't through Apple itself, it was a deal offered by a credit company, possibly MBNA, at that time.

Marv89
Apr 10, 2013, 11:44 PM
I was just pointing out the monthly payment, if the OP or anyone for that matter can't afford the payment, then thats different. BUT " never get a loan if you don't have to " depends on the situation, if Apple offered a cash discount, different story, but what they are saying is pay us 999.00 cash for the Air OR finance it for FREE over 12 months....assuming one can afford either option
Take the FREE financing...why wouldn't you, why put cash up front into a depreciating asset, when easy monthly payments can be made for free over time.

Here is a real example, friends of mine own a house worth about 500k
they came into about 90k cash and the husband asked my opinion on what to do with it, the wife wanted to refinance the house for a lower payment. I asked him can you afford the payment now, he said yes. I said putting that money into the mortgage won't make your house worth any more money. I would put it in the stock market, or bonds, carefully invested by a professional.

Well that was about 7 yrs ago, they refinanced and guess what happened to the real estate market...it went down...their 90k....GONE.

Like I said it depends on the situation.

So, what would've happened when stock market went down ? Being lucky doesn't make it any good option for others. (I assume you can't predict the future ;) )

DisplacedMic
Apr 11, 2013, 12:39 AM
I was just pointing out the monthly payment, if the OP or anyone for that matter can't afford the payment, then thats different. BUT " never get a loan if you don't have to " depends on the situation, if Apple offered a cash discount, different story, but what they are saying is pay us 999.00 cash for the Air OR finance it for FREE over 12 months....assuming one can afford either option
Take the FREE financing...why wouldn't you, why put cash up front into a depreciating asset, when easy monthly payments can be made for free over time.

Here is a real example, friends of mine own a house worth about 500k
they came into about 90k cash and the husband asked my opinion on what to do with it, the wife wanted to refinance the house for a lower payment. I asked him can you afford the payment now, he said yes. I said putting that money into the mortgage won't make your house worth any more money. I would put it in the stock market, or bonds, carefully invested by a professional.

Well that was about 7 yrs ago, they refinanced and guess what happened to the real estate market...it went down...their 90k....GONE.

Like I said it depends on the situation.

come on - a refinance is most definitely not the same thing as financing a laptop.

either way i don't see how any of this is particularly relevant to someone whose computer budget is currently $450.
i don't mean to be snarky, we've all be there. in my opinion you don't get wealthy borrowing money - but obviously there are exceptions...but again - not for someone with a $500 budget. A computer is not an investment.

sostoobad
Apr 11, 2013, 08:15 AM
So, what would've happened when stock market went down ? Being lucky doesn't make it any good option for others. (I assume you can't predict the future ;) )

My point was even if they put the money in the bank they would have been better off than buying down the mortgage. The stock market did go down and came back. My other point was, why put cash into a depreciating asset like a computer when someone offers free financing and you can afford the payments. it is a free loan, no fees or interest.

rdunlap
Apr 11, 2013, 08:29 AM
Not to start a conflict, but Windows OS is far from garbage. I do agree that Apple laptops are far better built than Windows based laptops, they cost ~2X more.

I've been using OS X now for over 9 months, and there is nothing that OS X can do that Windows cannot.

With the OP's budget, a MBA is not looking very likely and he'll have to settle for Windows based laptop.

Haha, Windows OS is garbage. Yes, it's functional but it is in fact garbage and very unstable. I don't remember the last time I had to reformat any of my Macs in 10 years, and yet Windows has so many problems I have to do it twice a year to my Windows PCs.

Also I'm a computer tech so I speak from experience.

DisplacedMic
Apr 11, 2013, 08:31 AM
My point was even if they put the money in the bank they would have been better off than buying down the mortgage. The stock market did go down and came back. My other point was, why put cash into a depreciating asset like a computer when someone offers free financing and you can afford the payments. it is a free loan, no fees or interest.

ah yes - the lucrative world of hindsight futures. ;)

there is no such thing as a free loan. Miss a payment, late on a payment, don't pay it off in time and boom, the post-offer interest rate kicks in which is currently an insane 23%

second - i'm not sure it's guaranteed that someone whose budget for a computer is $450 is likely to have enough credit to secure one of those loans.

Finally - there's the credit score itself to consider. a big increase in both new credit and the debt to credit ratio is going to have an effect on that score.

those 0% financing offers certainly have their place and can be a great way to make purchases, but i don't think it's a good idea to buy something like a computer with such an offer unless of course you have the capital to pay it off at any time should something come up. That's obviously just my opinion and i'm not a CPA but I can't in good conscience recommend that someone looking to spend $450 on a computer borrow more than twice that to buy a top of the line new machine.

DisplacedMic
Apr 11, 2013, 08:44 AM
Haha, Windows OS is garbage. Yes, it's functional but it is in fact garbage and very unstable. I don't remember the last time I had to reformat any of my Macs in 10 years, and yet Windows has so many problems I have to do it twice a year to my Windows PCs.

Also I'm a computer tech so I speak from experience.

well not to try and argue with the wisdom of an experienced "computer tech" but i think you're being a bit silly here.

most of us are Mac people here so you don't need to convince anybody of the relative inferiority of Windows to Mac OS but "having to reformat twice a year" is a relatively small price to pay for a $400 computer which is what this guy is looking for.

If Windows is an issue, there are any number of linux distributions out there that are perfectly adequate. in fact that's exactly what i do with my cheap computers. $200-$400 computer, format, install Linux Mint - enjoy.

I don't think a $450 budget is reasonable for Macbook. That's going to be an old machine that is almost certainly going to need a new battery. They're not easily upgradable and at that price you really have no idea what you are getting.

I would save up another few hundred if my heart was set on a MBA or i would cut my loses and get a perfectly decent Lenovo etc.

either way this is all moot because i am not sure this kid is being realistic with his "needs" based on his other posts.

"I need a MacBook air for school and a msc pro and iMac because I need two comPuters at home." and has a budget of $1300...

notjustjay
Apr 11, 2013, 09:14 AM
well not to try and argue with the wisdom of an experienced "computer tech" but i think you're being a bit silly here.


That post sounds like someone who has been ignorant of the state of Windows in the past few years. And I'm not saying that to be insulting, but to highlight how much has changed.

5-7 years ago, right after I switched to the PowerBook (the 28.8%-interest PowerBook, sigh) I would have agreed with that post. Windows was a pain, there was such a high risk of malware, spyware, adware, BSODs, etc. I switched just in time, I never had to deal with any of that stuff. OS X, iLife, etc. felt lightyears ahead of what you could do with Windows.

Today, Windows has pretty much caught up. And, to back up my "ignorant" comment, I have to say that I was so busy being an Apple user that I didn't even notice, not until last December when I stepped into a Microsoft Store in Toronto. I did it to have a laugh, really ("let's see what kind of crap Microsoft is trying to pass off these days"), but came out surprised and impressed. Surface Pro is a very nice looking machine and Windows 8 is actually pretty cool. Shame on me for not paying attention to the industry.

Also, these past few years Apple has gone down a certain path that not everyone likes (Want an upgradeable machine? Want a replaceable battery? Non-glossy screen? Too bad.) If I was to buy a new laptop today, I'd be very torn between a Windows 8 ultrabook or a MacBook Air.

GizmoDVD
Apr 11, 2013, 09:43 AM
"Free" money is a good thing if you can do it, and if it works out for you, more power to you.

However, let me tell you my story of how I was completely screwed over by one of these plans. Yes, it was my own fault for not reading the fine print, but the damage was done.

I ordered a 12" PowerBook G4 back in 2003. I was in university, tiny income, poor credit rating, back then Canadian dollar was nowhere near US par and Mac prices were that much more insane. The PowerBook I wanted rang up at about $2700. I couldn't afford that all at once, but Apple's website offered a 0% financing deal. So I applied, and bought the PowerBook, configured to my liking.

While I was checking out, Apple's website offered me that page with the list of addons. "Final Cut Express - Add $149" was one of the options. Since I wanted to do video editing, I checked the box.

So, Final Cut Express shipped out immediately and $149 (plus tax) was charged to the loan account. A few weeks later, my BTO PowerBook was shipped, and the remaining $2700 was charged.

Ah, but the fine print said that 0% financing only applied to the FIRST ITEM charged to the account. The rest? Standard loan terms -- at 28.8%.

So I got an interest free loan on $150 and paid a TON of interest on $2700 that I had to pay down slowly. Combine that with some payroll screwups at my university and the bottom line is it took YEARS to climb out of that hole. I never tallied up the total interest paid. I don't want to know. :(

So, by all means finance if you want, but be careful. Offering 0% to one person means totally screwing someone else to make up the difference. Don't become the other guy.

Why didn't you just return it after finding out the interest was 28%?

notjustjay
Apr 11, 2013, 09:56 AM
Why didn't you just return it after finding out the interest was 28%?

I didn't notice until I saw interest charges a month later when the first bill arrived. In hindsight, I probably should have returned it, or called MBNA to complain. The reality of it was that I was embarrassed at myself for making such a dumb mistake, and my pride, combined with optimism, said "no, it's OK, we can do this". At the time I figured I'd just pay down the loan as quickly as I could, and I moved money from another credit card (at only 18%) to pay down the MBNA debt.

Things got worse because I was on the university payroll at the time (being an RA and TA). Their student payroll system made deposits once a month, and due to a paperwork error at the university office, they missed one of mine, meaning I had no income for two months, during which time I was forced to rack up more debt on the credit card. All combined, it was a deep hole to climb out of.

rdunlap
Apr 11, 2013, 11:17 AM
well not to try and argue with the wisdom of an experienced "computer tech" but i think you're being a bit silly here.

most of us are Mac people here so you don't need to convince anybody of the relative inferiority of Windows to Mac OS but "having to reformat twice a year" is a relatively small price to pay for a $400 computer which is what this guy is looking for.

If Windows is an issue, there are any number of linux distributions out there that are perfectly adequate. in fact that's exactly what i do with my cheap computers. $200-$400 computer, format, install Linux Mint - enjoy.

I don't think a $450 budget is reasonable for Macbook. That's going to be an old machine that is almost certainly going to need a new battery. They're not easily upgradable and at that price you really have no idea what you are getting.

I would save up another few hundred if my heart was set on a MBA or i would cut my loses and get a perfectly decent Lenovo etc.

either way this is all moot because i am not sure this kid is being realistic with his "needs" based on his other posts.

"I need a MacBook air for school and a msc pro and iMac because I need two comPuters at home." and has a budget of $1300...

You don't even need to spend $450 nowadays to get a more than capable Windows laptop. Great hardware, bad OS. That's all I'm saying.

DisplacedMic
Apr 11, 2013, 11:39 AM
That post sounds like someone who has been ignorant of the state of Windows in the past few years. And I'm not saying that to be insulting, but to highlight how much has changed.

5-7 years ago, right after I switched to the PowerBook (the 28.8%-interest PowerBook, sigh) I would have agreed with that post. Windows was a pain, there was such a high risk of malware, spyware, adware, BSODs, etc. I switched just in time, I never had to deal with any of that stuff. OS X, iLife, etc. felt lightyears ahead of what you could do with Windows.

Today, Windows has pretty much caught up. And, to back up my "ignorant" comment, I have to say that I was so busy being an Apple user that I didn't even notice, not until last December when I stepped into a Microsoft Store in Toronto. I did it to have a laugh, really ("let's see what kind of crap Microsoft is trying to pass off these days"), but came out surprised and impressed. Surface Pro is a very nice looking machine and Windows 8 is actually pretty cool. Shame on me for not paying attention to the industry.

Also, these past few years Apple has gone down a certain path that not everyone likes (Want an upgradeable machine? Want a replaceable battery? Non-glossy screen? Too bad.) If I was to buy a new laptop today, I'd be very torn between a Windows 8 ultrabook or a MacBook Air.

agreed on all counts. i myself will never leave OSX unless something changes drastically, but we have some Windows 8 computers at work that are perfectly fine. and i still use XP as my primary VM.

----------

I didn't notice until I saw interest charges a month later when the first bill arrived. In hindsight, I probably should have returned it, or called MBNA to complain. The reality of it was that I was embarrassed at myself for making such a dumb mistake, and my pride, combined with optimism, said "no, it's OK, we can do this". At the time I figured I'd just pay down the loan as quickly as I could, and I moved money from another credit card (at only 18%) to pay down the MBNA debt.

Things got worse because I was on the university payroll at the time (being an RA and TA). Their student payroll system made deposits once a month, and due to a paperwork error at the university office, they missed one of mine, meaning I had no income for two months, during which time I was forced to rack up more debt on the credit card. All combined, it was a deep hole to climb out of.

yes - i'd say this not an atypical story. you've obviously learned from it which is more than many people but i imagine that these finance offers target young people. i mean a computer isn't exactly a huge essential purchase to most people. i'm certainly not wealthy by any means, but i could come up with 1-2k if i absolutely had to.

and being a bit older i've learned that i don't "absolutely have to" when it comes to buying tech. in other words, i save the money and THEN buy it.

TC25
Apr 11, 2013, 11:45 AM
Also I'm a computer tech so I speak from experience.

And of course, your experience is universal. :rolleyes:

I'm happy with OSX, but I am also secure enough in that decision that I do not have to childishly denigrate other people's decision by calling it garbage.

DisplacedMic
Apr 11, 2013, 12:50 PM
You don't even need to spend $450 nowadays to get a more than capable Windows laptop. Great hardware, bad OS. That's all I'm saying.

you and i define the word garbage very differently i think.

skedssays
Apr 11, 2013, 12:55 PM
I really need a MacBook air for school, I have a budget of $450 anyone have any suggestions on where to get one?

Fantasyland

stchman
Apr 11, 2013, 04:53 PM
Haha, Windows OS is garbage. Yes, it's functional but it is in fact garbage and very unstable. I don't remember the last time I had to reformat any of my Macs in 10 years, and yet Windows has so many problems I have to do it twice a year to my Windows PCs.

Also I'm a computer tech so I speak from experience.

Really, I've been using Windows for years as well and do not have to perform a 2X yearly re-install. My last Windows machine I got ~2 years out of a Vista install, yes I said Vista. I have been building and configuring PCs for well over 10 years, so I speak from experience as well.

You must surf some uber spyware/virus ridden pr0n.

----------

And of course, your experience is universal. :rolleyes:

I'm happy with OSX, but I am also secure enough in that decision that I do not have to childishly denigrate other people's decision by calling it garbage.

I invented the Internet. Just because I said so makes it true!!!

TC25
Apr 11, 2013, 04:55 PM
You don't even need to spend $450 nowadays to get a more than capable Windows laptop. Great hardware, bad OS. That's all I'm saying.
Everyone understood your point....and we aren't even computer techs.:rolleyes:

rdunlap
Apr 11, 2013, 06:27 PM
And of course, your experience is universal. :rolleyes:

I'm happy with OSX, but I am also secure enough in that decision that I do not have to childishly denigrate other people's decision by calling it garbage.

I'm not denigrating his decision. Just speaking the truth from working on these machines daily. Go kick rocks ...

----------

Really, I've been using Windows for years as well and do not have to perform a 2X yearly re-install. My last Windows machine I got ~2 years out of a Vista install, yes I said Vista. I have been building and configuring PCs for well over 10 years, so I speak from experience as well.

You must surf some uber spyware/virus ridden pr0n.

----------



I invented the Internet. Just because I said so makes it true!!!

You just must be used to a slow computer :p

... and you're probably a horrible computer technician, especially if you chose to use Vista on a day to day basis. Worst operating system since ME.

stchman
Apr 11, 2013, 07:07 PM
I'm not denigrating his decision. Just speaking the truth from working on these machines daily. Go kick rocks ...

----------





You just must be used to a slow computer :p

... and you're probably a horrible computer technician, especially if you chose to use Vista on a day to day basis. Worst operating system since ME.

Daily working on Windows machines?? I'm sure you're "working" is a very subjective term.

WTF is kick rocks? Are you 13?

My Windows machines are really fast.

Vista was my last Windows install, I use Windows 7 on my new Windows machines.

You ARE a really lousy computer technician if your Windows installs require 6 month re-installs.

kulimer
Apr 11, 2013, 11:05 PM
You really meant to post this in a Dell forum, right?

NT1440
Apr 11, 2013, 11:13 PM
Also, these past few years Apple has gone down a certain path that not everyone likes (Want an upgradeable machine? Want a replaceable battery? Non-glossy screen? Too bad.) If I was to buy a new laptop today, I'd be very torn between a Windows 8 ultrabook or a MacBook Air.

Good luck upgrading your ultra-book. 9/10 of the ones we sell at work (best buy) are just as unserviceable as a macbook air. :rolleyes:

notjustjay
Apr 12, 2013, 12:26 AM
Good luck upgrading your ultra-book. 9/10 of the ones we sell at work (best buy) are just as unserviceable as a macbook air. :rolleyes:

True. I'm eyeing a couple of models in particular, the Lenovo Yoga 13 or Dell XPS 12, both of which offer user upgradable SSD, but not sure about RAM.

NT1440
Apr 12, 2013, 12:38 PM
True. I'm eyeing a couple of models in particular, the Lenovo Yoga 13 or Dell XPS 12, both of which offer user upgradable SSD, but not sure about RAM.

Most of them are soldered in. The thing I HATE about the PC makers is they get their bases all riled up about features that apple's newest device doesn't have..then 3 years later right on queue they are racing to emulate those same features, rather than innovate and overcome the limitations of said features.

I like ultrabooks, I really do. But there is no reason that they couldn't come up with a mechanism to allow RAM upgrades (Intel should have mandated this for the ultrabook moniker as they did with wireless displays and touchscreen ability). Rather than catering to their own enthusiasts they play "me too" with apple while adopting the bad for consumer decisions that Apple has made.

The difference to me is that for whatever reason (I know most components are the same) even though Apple's hardware gets older, it seems to just soldier on. Which is why if I wanted an ultra book, I'd go with a MBA over the nice Asus I've had my eyes on. Somehow Apple's stuff just lasts longer even once it's outdated, and I can recycle down through my family and know that the computer will give few (if any issues) until it finally does crap out (my dads (was my aunt's) powerbook g4 finally crapped out due to the well known Nvidia graphics issue EIGHT years after originally purchased).

Macs tend to last (though are still definitely vulnerable if a Mobo issue crops up), my PC's tend to be hit or miss. I had an Asus crap out after two years, while a pair of really cheap 2006 Toshiba's are still soldering on (after small replacements such as HDDs & RAM). The macs? I've only ever upgraded the RAM and HDD, for performance and storage, never because of an issue.

rockyroad55
Apr 12, 2013, 12:45 PM
I'd recommend getting a nice Ultrabook from Asus or Dell for that price. Heck, I'm in college and barely use a computer. I am delegating almost all my needs to my ipad.

notjustjay
Apr 12, 2013, 12:50 PM
The difference to me is that for whatever reason (I know most components are the same) even though Apple's hardware gets older, it seems to just soldier on.
[ ... ]

The macs? I've only ever upgraded the RAM and HDD, for performance and storage, never because of an issue.

You raise a good point! My current MacBook Pro at home is from 2007. That's 6 years old! And it still runs perfectly fine -- although I did upgrade the RAM and hard drive. It is starting to show signs of failing -- some of the little rubber feet have fallen off and the optical drive occasionally doesn't read discs (flaky connector?) but other than this, it shows no signs of physical failure, and it's still fast enough for my day to day use that I haven't felt the need to buy a faster machine.

The Mac I had before that was the 12" PowerBook G4 (which was kind of the MacBook Air of the early 2000's -- very portable, great little machine), and I used that as my daily driver for 5 years too. The only reason I gave up and sold that machine was Apple's switch to intel processors. I was starting to feel left out, software wise, and decided to ditch the G4.

NT1440
Apr 12, 2013, 12:55 PM
You raise a good point! My current MacBook Pro at home is from 2007. That's 6 years old! And it still runs perfectly fine -- although I did upgrade the RAM and hard drive. It is starting to show signs of failing -- some of the little rubber feet have fallen off and the optical drive occasionally doesn't read discs (flaky connector?) but other than this, it shows no signs of physical failure, and it's still fast enough for my day to day use that I haven't felt the need to buy a faster machine.

The Mac I had before that was the 12" PowerBook G4 (which was kind of the MacBook Air of the early 2000's -- very portable, great little machine), and I used that as my daily driver for 5 years too. The only reason I gave up and sold that machine was Apple's switch to intel processors. I was starting to feel left out, software wise, and decided to ditch the G4.

It seems that those who don't "need" the latest and greatest are only forced to turn over their macs once a major change in the field occurs. Others seem to buy a new laptop every few years and are furious that their $400 computer crapped out after "only 3 years". I deal with these customers every single day at the Geek Squad. It really amazes me that people think that because we've gotten to the point where a cheapo computer can be sold for $289, that it's going to last as long as an $800+ machine with a real engineered body (not injected molded crap whose keyboard literally flexes an entire half inch from normal typing).

American's have no problem buying expensive cars because they think it will last, why in the hell has that not translated to computers? Is it the technology development cycle? Is it really important to upgrade your word processing/email reading machine simply because the new processors are 15% faster and the GPU is twice as powerful....when you don't use any of those features?

Well, now that I'm all riled up on the pitiful state of American technology consumers....it's time to go to work and deal with them. :(

ermoore
Apr 12, 2013, 02:58 PM
For $450 I would buy a 2Ghz Core2Duo White macbook and a new battery from ebay. The Core2Duo's are upgradeable to 4GB of ram, and some of them online aleady have that installed.

You can buy the Macbook for $350 and the New Battery for $50. That even leaves room for a HDD or RAM upgrade if need-be. There is no reason to get an Air if your budget is $450.

Bump that budget up to $650 and then you might have a chance.

And to whomever said putting 90K in your savings account would have been smarter move than putting 90K down on your home... That is a very ridiculous statement. For one, most savings interest rates don't even keep up with inflation, so you're losing money every day it sits in there. Investing in the stock market would be ideal, but that is also a GAMBLE. There's no Gamble in paying off your DEBT.

stchman
Apr 12, 2013, 04:11 PM
For $450 I would buy a 2Ghz Core2Duo White macbook and a new battery from ebay. The Core2Duo's are upgradeable to 4GB of ram, and some of them online aleady have that installed.

You can buy the Macbook for $350 and the New Battery for $50. That even leaves room for a HDD or RAM upgrade if need-be. There is no reason to get an Air if your budget is $450.

Bump that budget up to $650 and then you might have a chance.

And to whomever said putting 90K in your savings account would have been smarter move than putting 90K down on your home... That is a very ridiculous statement. For one, most savings interest rates don't even keep up with inflation, so you're losing money every day it sits in there. Investing in the stock market would be ideal, but that is also a GAMBLE. There's no Gamble in paying off your DEBT.

If I'm going to spend $650 on an old C2D Macbook, I'll get the $900 refurbished base 13" MBA for $900.

DisplacedMic
Apr 13, 2013, 10:20 AM
And to whomever said putting 90K in your savings account would have been smarter move than putting 90K down on your home... That is a very ridiculous statement. For one, most savings interest rates don't even keep up with inflation, so you're losing money every day it sits in there. Investing in the stock market would be ideal, but that is also a GAMBLE. There's no Gamble in paying off your DEBT.

i agree - except i don't like it when people refer to investments as gambling.
obviously some people can treat investments as gambles, but it's not the same thing.

Gambling is a zero-sum game, an investment isn't. In order for someone to win at poker, for example, somebody else has to lose. That is not the case with investing.

If i sell you my house for $200,000 then i have gained $200,000 but you have gained a house. We can both gain from that investment. Obviously either one or both of us can lose as well - but just because something has a risk doesn't necessarily mean it's a gamble in that sense.

I know that this is splitting hairs - but i think the distinction is important. especially in a discussion like this :-)

xj8954
Apr 15, 2013, 07:59 AM
I agree that you should just save a little bit more.
Just get a refurbish from Apple, the cheapest MBA 11 inch is like 850, and you get the one-year warranty.
Refurbish is as good as new, don't let the word trick your mind.

And I really don't recommend buying a cheap MBA on eBay, you will most likely regret it.