Powerbook Deal of the Century!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by $MacUser$, Jul 5, 2005.

  1. $MacUser$ macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #1
    Hey there guys,

    Ive been wanting to make the switch to mac for the better part of a decade. However, as is always the case, money and circumstances prevented it. As my '01 Dull is showing its age (both the floppy and CD drives have crapped on me, and my iPod has more hard drive capacity!) I have been pushed into purchasing a new computer.

    That being said, I have decided to opt for one of the 17" Powerbooks. The educational discount on them is already great...I would be paying 2399. So, I went down to the campus computer store the other day and placed an order. Then, just today, I got this hastily written email from the store saying they had an open box 17 for two hundred bucks! I was like "whaa?!" and rushed my a$$ right down there.


    As I thought was the case, the manager of the store wrote the email in a big rush and meant to say 200 off the 2400 EDU price. However, due to her mistake, she agreed to let me have it for $2000, which I believe is a great deal on a new top of the range Pbook. The catch is, of course, that its open box.

    The story given to me is the computer was purchased for a faculty member. Upon recieving it, they saw that it had been previously registered and returned it to the campus store. The manager firgured out, after dealing with Apple, that this was a model returned within the 14 day grace period by John Doe Consumer and rebadged as a refurb. Apple neglected to wipe the drive before sending it back out, thus the debacle that ensued.

    Now then, when the manager recieved this computer she saw that I had an order in for a new 17 configured exactly how this refurb (or whatever you wanna call it) is. Thus she contacted me and et cetera.

    Finally, to my question. Do you guys think there is anything wrong with this unit, or do you think I am getting an excellent deal? I am certainly going to pick it up one way or the other, as I have a ten day period to evaluate it and return for a full refund for any reason. I would like to know if there is anything in particular I should inspect to ensure the computer is in top shape (ie: any hardware or software anomolies common to the PBook that may have prompted the original return).

    From the way it was described to me, this unit is essentially brand new, but open box. They assured me it comes with the full Apple warranty and all the goodies...from the way they were going on it seems like I am getting the deal of the century. My campus store is also an official mac dealer/reseller (ie: not third party) so I tend to trust what they are telling me. What do you guys think?
     
  2. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #2
    If it has warranty, go for it!

    To ease your mind, run the hardware test cd. Also you can reinstall tiger, and wipe the drive selecting "random 8 way right*" or "right zeros*" (*they're something similar to those names) to completely clean the drive.
     
  3. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #3
    The discount should be enough to cover AppleCare, which would be a good idea to pick up.

    Since an Open Box "may" start the clock with the earlier registration.

    Even if you give up 6 months in warranty coverage to pick up AppleCare, it's not a bad deal.

    And a drive can always be wiped and reloaded.
     
  4. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2003
    Location:
    Citizens Bank Park
    #4
    Purchase some AppleCare and you have 3 years of guaranteed service. You'll probably have much more than that, I'm just looking at worse-case scenario.
     
  5. runninmac macrumors 65816

    runninmac

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    Location:
    Rockford MI
    #5
    I think that sounds like a great deal. I would just do a clean install on it then you will be good to go + it has the warenty if anything does go wrong.
     
  6. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #6
    In regards to Applecare...that can be purchased anytime while the original warrenty is still in effect, correct? I ask because the oldest this computer could possible be is 6months (probably much newer than that). This would give me six months to buy the applecare. See, I really need to buy some foreign language software thats gonna set me back a few hundred, as well as Mariner Write on top of that (does Tiger come with a decent word processor??). Conciquently, I wont have the money for applecare right this moment.

    Is there any way to find out what the balance is on the current warrenty? At the store they made a point of saying "...and you get the one year apple warrenty too" so could this mean I have the full deal? Ill be sure to verify this when I pick it up...
     
  7. alexstein macrumors 6502a

    alexstein

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2004
    #7
    congrats on your new pbook. you will love it. seems to me like a sweet deal. like others already said get apple care and you will be all set. ...and have fun..
     
  8. javiercr macrumors 6502

    javiercr

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #8
    you have a full year since the time you buy it, even for reburb, so if there is something wrong with your laptop i'm sure you'll discover it in a year!
     
  9. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    Hey grapes, love the avitar! Do they sell that in poster form??

    Is wiping the hard drive as simple as rickvanr says...ie: is this the proper method of going about it (seems an assload simpler than wiping a windows disk)? From what I gather, the hard drive has already been wiped for me, so I should be good in that department but just in case...

    In general, any questions you think I should run by the helpful sales folks before I run off with my new[ish] Apple?
     
  10. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #10
    Javie, thats what I figured. Although applecare is a good idea, I really dont see myself plopping down two (or is it three?) hundred dollars for something I may never use. If it has a one year warranty thats fine for me, at least for the time being.

    My goal is to Ebay this unit once the Macintel books come out anyhow. I was very reluctant buying a PBook, as getting tech that isnt bleeding edge goes against my consumer savvy. However, I very much need a new computer and I refuse to buy anything short of a Mac this go around. Thats why Im picking up this PBook...the great price sealed the deal for me.

    Im at a good job right now making decent money (just started, though, and its part time, which is why im strapped at the moment). I figure if I can get even half what I am paying for this PBook six months from now (or whenever they come out), then I should have the difference to pick up a comperable replacement. If, for some reason, Im broke when the intels come out Ill just pick up applecare then and ride this PBook for as long as it'll carry me. Decent plan or do I need to get Applecare this moment?
     
  11. Switzermac macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2005
  12. RedTomato macrumors 68040

    RedTomato

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2005
    Location:
    .. London ..
    #12
    Tomato says ... Dude, this 17'' is likely to be better than the first few Macintels that come out. They are highly likely to suffer from teething problems etc.

    The first few models of a new processor always perform worse than the top end model of the previous processor.

    486 went up to 120mhz, pentium started at 70 or 90mhz, same inital performance ratios for pii / piii , same for g3/g4 etc.

    If it works well within the first 10 days, and isn't DOA, then it's likely to be a keeper.

    Brought my 15'' 1.5GHZ last summer for work reasons, was convinced a new model G5 PB would come out next month, but a year later, my PB is still one of the best laptops in the world :)

    xoxo says Tomato xoxo

    15'' PB running at 15 kilogirls /sec

    (assuming 1 girl = 1 analog addition /sec = 100 digital clock cycles)

    for explanation of kilogirl / human calculators in WWII see http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v434/n7037/full/4341070a.html
     
  13. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #13
    This can be true, but we aren't talking new processors here. This is tech that already exists and is being adapted to a new platform. Also, you are speaking of jumps between generations. Most always, a new gen. brings with it a host of added benefits that the previous did not have. Pentium to PII = MMX, P3 to P4 = Hyperthreading, G4 to G5 = huge increase to system bus, among other things. Im only seeing Mhz increases quoted here...surly you know of the megahertz myth! ;) Dont get me wrong, there are exceptions, like better performance per clock when comparing the P3 to the first gen. P4, but this isnt the rule. Case in point: Which processor would you rather have in your powerbook, a 2.0 Ghz G4 (the theoretical max) or a 1.6 Ghz G5??

    I do agree with you on the new hardware issues. That being said, I certainly wont rush into anything. I would most likly wait for a second Rev of Macintel anything before making the plunge. I would also scower the forums and review sites for feedback as well.

    The 17" Powerbook is an excellent machine and Im sure Ill get mucho use out of it. I would only jump on the intel if it was really enticing. Besides, Ive never demanded Uber performance from a laptop...I use them primarily for word processing, internet and educational pursuits, with the occasional game thrown in. By the time I have enough money scraped together for a new book I mine as well just buy a mac desktop for the intensive stuff and retire the Powerbook to internet and word processing duty.
     
  14. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #15
    Deal's sealed, Baby! Just waiting for that student load to come in so I can pick it up...uggh
     
  15. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #16
    As an aside, does anyone know the graphics unit that came with the last Rev. 17incher? That is, the 1.5ghz Powerbook 17. A good buddy of mine was in the market for a laptop a while back and I steered him toward the PBook. Needless to say, he loves it, but he is curious about the graphics unit installed. Im nearly positive its the 9700 128mb but I could be wrong...the latest rev simply pushed the processor up a few MHz, right?
     
  16. el greenerino macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2003
    #17
    HAHA, I hope you're joking.

    I wouldn't buy a mac if I weren't planning to get Applecare with it.

    Especially with a portable.
     
  17. $MacUser$ thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #18
    Green, perhaps you can help me as no one else has provided a direct answer. Is there any benefit to buying Applecare prior to the 1 year warranty expiring?? Does Applecare need to be bought at the time the computer is purchased, or can it be aquired anytime during the 1 year warranty period?

    Thanks.
     
  18. rickvanr macrumors 68040

    rickvanr

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2002
    Location:
    Brockville
    #19
    It's really how you treat your computer, for me, my Powerbook has been solid as a rock since the day I bought it- almost 3 years ago. Absolutely zero problems even without applecare. I do however think it's a good investment, and will probably get it for my PM over the school year.


    No. Except if you buy it at the when you buy your computer you have it, deal's done. If you don't, like every other human, you'll procrastinate and say "I'll do it next week" and eventually it will be too late.
     
  19. tuartboy macrumors 6502a

    tuartboy

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    #20
    i could look it up and tell you, but:

    open sytem profiler
    hardware > graphics/displays

    in that app is everything he will ever want to know about his mac.

    Also, about the change to mactel: Remember that it isn't just an upgrade to the architecture, it is a whole revision to the OS and all apps as well. Much of your early troubles may come from the software side as well as hardware issues. No computer is perfect, but the current Albooks have had enough revisions, they are mighty close IMO. It is noticeably slower than my wintel laptop in doing the same tasks, but it does it solidly and right every time without fail. That is more than worth it. Besides, windows is crap and everyone knows it (actually no one does, but who cares!)!
     

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