PDA

View Full Version : First Mac Purhcase - Used iMac - Questions


EXV
Mar 15, 2004, 04:09 PM
I've decided to purchase my first Mac, and have decided on a used 800mhz or 1ghz iMac with the Superdrive.

The iMac will be used primarily for the iDVD, iPhoto, and iMovie applications, however it will also be used by a five year old on a regular basis.

Questions:

I'm aware that the 800mhz and 1ghz iMacs have different hard drive speeds; bus speeds; memory; and video cards, therefore am I better off shopping for a 1ghz, or will the 800mhz be sufficient for my described usage?

Is it worth purchasing Apple Care for used iMacs (i.e., are iMacs dependable and are repairs expensive?)

Finally, are the flat panel LCDs fragile (a five year old will be using the iMac)? Is there any protective covering that can / should be used with the LCD?


Thank you.

titaniumducky
Mar 15, 2004, 04:34 PM
I've decided to purchase my first Mac, and have decided on a used 800mhz or 1ghz iMac with the Superdrive.

The iMac will be used primarily for the iDVD, iPhoto, and iMovie applications, however it will also be used by a five year old on a regular basis.

Questions:

I'm aware that the 800mhz and 1ghz iMacs have different hard drive speeds; bus speeds; memory; and video cards, therefore am I better off shopping for a 1ghz, or will the 800mhz be sufficient for my described usage?

Is it worth purchasing Apple Care for used iMacs (i.e., are iMacs dependable and are repairs expensive?)

Finally, are the flat panel LCDs fragile (a five year old will be using the iMac)? Is there any protective covering that can / should be used with the LCD?


Thank you.

The 800MHz model should be fine for your uses and is probably considerably cheaper. I doubt AppleCare will be needed - you do get one year complimentary and phone support for three months. You can buy it anytime within the 1 year if you wish. The LCD is pretty fragile, but there's not much you can do except for making the five year old understand that touching the screen is bad and so is pushing it off the table. ;)

Seriously, as long as he/she doesn't apply pressure to the LCD and smash it somehow, it should be absolutely fine.

I however recommend an eMac for your uses. It will save you money (I got a ComboDrive 1GHz refurb with 640MB of RAM and the eMac stand for $900 - $649 without added RAM and stand). It will give the processing power you need. The CRT is MUCH less fragile - it will even stand up to being touched and can often survive a (God forbid it) fall. Speakers are built in and, except for gaming and heavy-duty video/photo editing, NO differences will be apparent between the eMac and iMac. It's a solid machine which will do everything you need.

portent
Mar 15, 2004, 06:36 PM
The 800MHz model should be fine for your uses and is probably considerably cheaper. I doubt AppleCare will be needed - you do get one year complimentary and phone support for three months. You can buy it anytime within the 1 year if you wish. The LCD is pretty fragile, but there's not much you can do except for making the five year old understand that touching the screen is bad and so is pushing it off the table. ;)

Seriously, as long as he/she doesn't apply pressure to the LCD and smash it somehow, it should be absolutely fine.

I however recommend an eMac for your uses. It will save you money (I got a ComboDrive 1GHz refurb with 640MB of RAM and the eMac stand for $900 - $649 without added RAM and stand). It will give the processing power you need. The CRT is MUCH less fragile - it will even stand up to being touched and can often survive a (God forbid it) fall. Speakers are built in and, except for gaming and heavy-duty video/photo editing, NO differences will be apparent between the eMac and iMac. It's a solid machine which will do everything you need.

I second this. The only differences between the iMac and eMac are the type of display and the price. An eMac's CRT will stand up to poking or prodding better than an LCD.

Dont Hurt Me
Mar 15, 2004, 06:50 PM
Emac is a lot better choice wether economics or the durabilty factor with a 5 year old. plus what you were going to pay for a used Imac you could get a brand spanking new 1 ghz G4 Emac all shiney and new with warranty etc. remember to load up on memory. 512 does nice but the more the better. Imac is ok but overpriced,underperforming and the lcd screen with a kid may be ok but then again maybe not. pretty hard to screw up Emac and thats why schools like them.

titaniumducky
Mar 15, 2004, 07:14 PM
I second this. The only differences between the iMac and eMac are the type of display and the price. An eMac's CRT will stand up to poking or prodding better than an LCD.

Actually, the iMac has a considerably better video card, faster RAM, and USB 2.0.

The eMac, however, has more USB ports.

Dont Hurt Me
Mar 15, 2004, 07:41 PM
Actually, the iMac has a considerably better video card, faster RAM, and USB 2.0.

The eMac, however, has more USB ports.Imac has a slightly better video card, and its ram is half used like all g4s so speedy DDR in a G4 machine is for the most part no faster the old sodimms sdrams. G4 has no idea what to do with DDR. its a marketing gimmick. if G4 has a 167 bus what good is faster ram? I remember MacAddict doing a test a while back between Imac DDR and mx video at 1 gig vs Emac at 1 gig. Emac kept winning. I think this is why Imac got bumped to 1.25 and Emac was held back. but we all know those same chips are in Emac only clocked down ;) just ask ibodnar. he has his running at 1.33. Emacs crt can smoke the imacs lcd. no dead pixels,no ghosting and no restricted viewing angles. yes Imac looks cool but thats it. Emac is the best value its to bad Apple has to hold it back.

Unclej78
Mar 15, 2004, 07:50 PM
Like everyone else, I agree that you should get the eMac.

I too, have a 4yr old and a 15 mo. old. My 4yr has always used and been on a Mac (org. an CRT iMac). Now I have a 12 powerbook hooked to an 18" LCD monitor, and I still have problems with him wanting to touch the screen.

Another point is that you could get a Refurb. and after a Revision comes out, you could use the excuse that the eMac is now theirs and you NEED a powerbook, etc.

Naimfan
Mar 15, 2004, 07:59 PM
I'm with the folks who suggest an eMac. Then again, I just ordered a refurb one for my six year old son. He loves working on both my G3 Powerbook and his mom's desktop, he still likes to point at stuff on the screen with his finger.

For the difference in price, you could also come close to maxing out the memory in the eMac--I've ordered one 512 meg stick for it and will order a second when I order my new Powerbook. In terms of speed, I've got to believe the difference would be negligible given the price difference. And an eMac is FAR more likely to survive a young child--that is, after all, part of the point...

The Apple store has recently had 1GHz eMacs with Combo drives and 40g HDs for $649. Add two 512 sticks of RAM for ~$110 each, and you've got quite a good machine.

Best,

Bob

EXV
Mar 15, 2004, 09:11 PM
Everyone - thank you for taking the time to reply to my questions.

I originally considered the eMac, but I read many posts about problems with the eMacs (high failure rate.) I also called a few repair shops in the SF Bay Area - each of which reported a high failure rate with eMacs.

Does anyone know if this eMac problem truely exists or if it's been resolved?


Thanks Again!

Coca-Cola
Mar 15, 2004, 10:54 PM
[QUOTE=EXV]Everyone - thank you for taking the time to reply to my questions.

I originally considered the eMac, but I read many posts about problems with the eMacs (high failure rate.) I also called a few repair shops in the SF Bay Area - each of which reported a high failure rate with eMacs.

Does anyone know if this eMac problem truely exists or if it's been resolved?

I found a Consumer reports in our employee break room the other day and was amazed to see that they rated the eMac as their most reliable bargain desktop. Wow! It was nice to see them in a non-mac magazine, but to be the best? The iBook also got top billing in the laptop category. Cool. I wouldn't worry about the old eMac problems. Apple is pretty good about fixing stuff. You will covered for a year or longer (if you reported a problem in that year, they will fix it later on I believe.) I like the eMac. You know what is really sad. My boss had an emac ordered for a contest drawing but he lost the drawing box. So the eMac is sitting in our warehouse. I don't think it will ever leave, as he is afraid someone will find out the contest didn't work because someone screwed up. I don't think it will ever leave the warehouse. Sad. We have Pentium 2's to do our daily work on though! Madness!

TimDaddy
Mar 16, 2004, 04:15 AM
Remember the iMac commercial where the guy was looking at an iMac through a window? He would turn, nod his head, and eventually stuck out his tounge, and all these actions were mimicked by the iMac. Don't let your child see this commercial! I let my boys, now 4 and 6, see it because I knew they'd love it. I fought with my six year old for months to stop him from playing that game with our iMac. My four year old still does it, but he is an extremely stubborn young man. He would probably be more likely to quit if I told him that he had to do it! Be sure she knows not too play with the screen so it doesn't wear out. Of course, you know your child, we don't. So, just be sure not to give her any ideas that you think she may want to copy, unless those are ideas that you want her to copy!

titaniumducky
Mar 16, 2004, 08:17 AM
Everyone - thank you for taking the time to reply to my questions.

I originally considered the eMac, but I read many posts about problems with the eMacs (high failure rate.) I also called a few repair shops in the SF Bay Area - each of which reported a high failure rate with eMacs.

Does anyone know if this eMac problem truely exists or if it's been resolved?


Thanks Again!

There was a series of problems with the past eMacs, but they have been fixed. I too was at first worried about this, but I made a couple of posts - one at Apple, one here, and one at TechTV. In all three places, I got plenty of assurances from eMac owners that there were no problems with the more-current revisions. If something were to go wrong for some reason, you get a full warranty from Apple - one year HD, 3 mos. phone support - even for refurbs. If you don't want to go refurb, you can buy a new eMac for the price of your used iMac. Just don't buy from eBay or such because you will get NO warranty. Buying new from an authorized reseller (MacMall, CompUSA, etc.) is OK because it's like buying from Apple warranty wise.

EXV
Mar 16, 2004, 12:30 PM
There was a series of problems with the past eMacs, but they have been fixed. I too was at first worried about this, but I made a couple of posts - one at Apple, one here, and one at TechTV. In all three places, I got plenty of assurances from eMac owners that there were no problems with the more-current revisions. If something were to go wrong for some reason, you get a full warranty from Apple - one year HD, 3 mos. phone support - even for refurbs. If you don't want to go refurb, you can buy a new eMac for the price of your used iMac. Just don't buy from eBay or such because you will get NO warranty. Buying new from an authorized reseller (MacMall, CompUSA, etc.) is OK because it's like buying from Apple warranty wise.

Do you happen to know a revision date or number (i.e., is there any way to determine if the eMac I purchase is the revised version?)

This probably would not be an issue for a new eMac, but the information would be helpful if I purchased a used eMac.

Thanks again!