Is it safe to buy a Refurbished iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by mtthwcmn1, Jan 26, 2012.

  1. macrumors member


    Oct 9, 2011
    I have OCD, and love getting as close to perfection as I can get. I saw my friends refurbished iMac and it looked in perfect condition with no dead pixels or screen tinting or anything. Some people tell me that I will get one with dents and scratches and one that isn't good quality. The price savings seem worth it. I bought a new iPad 2 and had dead pixels and backlight bleeding and a friend got a perfect refurb one and 80 dollars back. I'm confused.
  2. macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
  3. macrumors newbie

    Jan 25, 2012
    Well, i just bought a refurbished iMac a few days ago. And i have to say it is in perfect condition. The computer even smelled new.
  4. macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2010
    Got mine little over a week and was perfect, I looked REALLY close with my surefire ;)
    I would/will buy refurb again for sure, only way to tell was refurb was the white box it came it but looks like it was never used!
  5. macrumors 68030


    Sep 23, 2006
    Off topic but...

    I've watched you post these subtle "search first" missives for some time and wonder if you could show what search criteria/method you use(d) (when you make the suggestion) to find those results and were they organized so well when the results came in? Seems most of my searches result in a million listings many of which are quite stale. I believe that sort of result causes most folks to post the same questions over and over (or perhaps they're just lazy).

  6. macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    That's not a "search first" missive. As I said, if the OP wants additional information, that's where and how to find it.
    If you're looking for suggestions on how to search, I'd be happy to respond to such a query in a separate thread, as it is off-topic for this thread.
  7. macmastersam, Jan 26, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 26, 2012

    macrumors 6502a

    Sep 14, 2011
    Essex, england
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

    Search bar?
  8. macrumors regular

    Oct 24, 2003
    Hong Kong
    Personal experience suggests you cannot go wrong with punching a refurbished iMac from Apple, I'd caution to wait until new 2012 model is released though as highly probable you'd actually get a 'new' as opposed to 'used' model - be it 21.5 or 27in form factor.

    On the plus side, and as many have noted on these boards, you may have upgraded iMac via refurbished route, i.e., bigger HDD/ more RAM, upgraded RAM GPU Ram memory in 27in model.

    On the negative side, you get a lemon, specifically one with LCD issues, which means testing properly yourself and swapping if any issues are apparent.

    Further, on refurbished models you have same 12 month Apple Warranty and ability to add AppleCare. Indeed, by not purchasing new and adding AppleCare, whilst paying only a fraction less than new, you do then have a full three year warranty with the added bonus of knowing should you sell on again, you'll get a greater return for a used Apple with APP than without, and say within a two year timeframe, with funds from selling your used Apple, you can then re-invest in another refurbished one.

    Look at it in cost of ownership terms by dividing actual cost with number years you intend to keep the Apple - the refurbished route offers good value for money, particularly given this years update will not offer a significant boost in speed terms - maybe in GPU terms - iMacs have never been brilliant games machines, but as part of a media centre set-up/ pure computational uses, they really are good value and aesthetically look nice too - best all-in-one on the market in my opinion.
  9. macrumors 68030


    Dec 18, 2007
    NY State of mind
    All my Apple products (except iPhones and iPads) have been issues whatsoever.
  10. macrumors 68020


    Nov 2, 2010
    Los Angeles but missing San Diego </3
    YES! They're basically brand new machines. I bought a 2010 refurbished MB and you couldn't even tell that it was a refurb. The only thing that gives it away is the box it comes in.
  11. macrumors 6502

    Oct 16, 2009
    I have a refurbished iMac, iPad and iPod. Never had a problem with any of them.
  12. macrumors member

    Aug 26, 2008
    One tiny caveat -

    Unlike a new Mac, you can't choose your keyboard or tracking device. They all come with a wireless keyboard and Magic Mouse. I prefer the wired keyboard (because I want a number pad) and want to get the Magic Trackpad. Considering it would be $120 or so to get these elsewhere, it somewhat kills the deal when I could have them swapped in with a new iMac. Otherwise, I think they are a fabulous deal.
  13. macrumors newbie

    Jan 24, 2012
    Well, seeing as my iMac that I've had for a week is (apparently) likely to go straight into the refurb stock for re-sale, I would say that there is an inherent risk in buying a refurb model.

    Whether mine has a faulty component or whether it's a generic design fault, nobody has been able to identify (including Applecare).
  14. macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Two refurbished MacBooks, refurbished Mac mini, refurbished Mac mini server, and a refurbished Airport Extreme here. All were perfect out of the box.

    I only buy new if I need a build-to-order option or if I am in a hurry (sometimes it takes a while for the refurb model I want to show up, and I'm just a 5 minute walk from an Apple Store.)
  15. macrumors 68030


    Jun 11, 2011
    I have had great luck with ref rubs from apple.

    Wether it be an airport extreme or a replaced iPod or iPhone
  16. macrumors member

    May 11, 2011
    I've had great success with refurbs. You really will get a great machine. And if your not satisfied (find a dent, or dead pixels), send it back within your return window.
  17. macrumors 6502a

    Mike in Kansas

    Sep 2, 2008
    Metro Kansas City
    Of course you could flip both of the items you didn't want on Craigslist or eBay and recoup $100. Plus, the savings on refurb Macs over new is quite often more than $200.
  18. macrumors member

    Jan 20, 2008
    Apple products I've own(ed) that were/are refurbished;

    2006 17" MBP lasted 4 years till I sold
    2010 27" iMac
    2010 Unibody Macbook
    iPad 1st gen
    iPhone 3gs
    iPod Touch 3rd gen
    Literally dozens of iPod shuffles (business giveaways)

    All have been refurbished direct from Apple the same warranty as "new".

    I've saved well over $500 by utilizing the refurbished "discount".

    It's the only way I'll go (by choice).
  19. macrumors 601


    Oct 26, 2009
    Another alternative -- If you are replacing an older Mac, or even a Windows box, you can keep your old keyboard and mouse and sell the new ones or bundle them with your old Mac to sweeten the deal when you sell.

    I swap these things around at home all the time. My wife likes the numeric keypad so she is using an older keyboard other than the one that came with her iMac. I occasionally switch out my stubby wireless keyboard (I don't use the numeric pad) for a 23 year old Northgate Omnikey keyboard when I have heavy typing to do. All three of my Mac minis not only didn't come with keyboards and mice but also run most of the time without keyboard and mice at all.
  20. macrumors 6502

    Jul 31, 2009
    Nearly always buy refurb if i can get the spec i am after, why would you pay a couple of hundred more for a box with an image on it ?

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