Replacement power adapters for Macbook?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by CommodityFetish, Dec 13, 2011.

  1. macrumors regular

    CommodityFetish

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    Syracuse, NY
    #1
    I have a MBP power adapter that had a short in it (where the thin cord connects to the brick) and has now completely stopped working. It is 3 years old and I am just out of Apple Care range.

    I REALLY don't want to be price-gouged by apple and be forced to pay $80 for a new one. Anyone have any experience with more reasonably priced off-brand versions of power adapters? Like these on Amazon:

    http://www.amazon.com/Replace-MagSa...?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=0&filterBy=addOneStar

    http://www.amazon.com/PC247-Replace...?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1323800031&sr=1-10

    Maybe I will just get a used Apple one, but it seems like the design is not that good, contributing to this problem, so I may run into the same wire-fraying short in the cord problem with a used one... any advice welcome, thanks!

    (Anyone want to speculate on what Apple's profit margin is on an $80 power adapter? I can see maybe some justification on higher margins on the products themselves, but to treat your existing customers this way, who have already forked it over for your products, to then hike the prices up so much on the replacement parts... why would you do that, except you want to make a killing on power adapters because there's not much a customer can do about it... It's certainly not the kind of business model I want to support. /end rant )
     
  2. macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #2
    Since the Magsafe design has never been licensed to third-party manufacturers, you should only buy them from Apple.
     
  3. CommodityFetish, Dec 13, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2011

    thread starter macrumors regular

    CommodityFetish

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    Syracuse, NY
    #3
    Thanks, good to know...

    (It suddenly feels so cozy in here, locked into a proprietary racket where I have no other good option than to pad Apple's pockets with some more of my hard-earned. I'm not bitter, really. I think $80 is pretty reasonable for a power adapter. I mean, it's $30 more than an ipod shuffle, and I'm sure the R&D, parts, and labor that went into the shuffle is miniscule compared to what went into achieving the technological feat of supplying electrical power to a laptop. "It's like magic, so natural and intuitive, you just plug it in and it works." Hmm... now that I think about it, if I can come up with another $20 I could get an Apple TV instead, but I guess it wouldn't power my laptop...)

    Huh, do you think that they came up with the magsafe design just to prevent 3rd parties from competing with them in this lucrative power adapter market... ? Nah, couldn't be. That surely had no part in it.
     
  4. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    #4
    Is it dangerous and has exposed wires?

    Mine failed that way, outwith AppleCare. With young kids in the house I took it up with AppleCare and sent in some photos, they replaced that end of it (i.e. not the final bit that plugs in to the wall) without too much hassle.

    This was on an original 15" MacBook Pro and I received a new-style magsafe connector, FYI.

    Andrew
     
  5. thread starter macrumors regular

    CommodityFetish

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    Syracuse, NY
    #5
    No, no exposed wires, but it's clearly just a short in the wire. For a few days now I was able to get it to work by changing the angle of the wire, but no more. I guess it couldn't hurt to ask them about it.
     
  6. macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #6
    Or they came up with an ingenious design that no one else did and patented it so no one else could steal their design and therefore are protecting their intellectual property.

    Now do they charge too much for their power adapter, maybe a little but even Dell requires you to use their chargers (I know because one broke on me and I tried a generic one that didn't change the battery).
     
  7. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2005
    Location:
    NY
    #7
  8. thread starter macrumors regular

    CommodityFetish

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    Syracuse, NY
    #8
    Thanks for the link to that article. I called the folks at apple tech support and they said that it may be covered because of this. (Although the short was where the cord attaches to the power brick, not the end that attaches to the computer.) Glad someone put together that class-action lawsuit. I think I'll take it in to my local apple store and see what they say.

    (Oh, and "intellectual property" ---> intellectual monopoly. ;) And yes, unfortunately apple are not the only ones who play the proprietary lock-in monopoly game and then overcharge for these things, but "that still don't make it right". )
     
  9. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 29, 2011
    Location:
    Michigan
    #9
    You should've gotten a class action settlement email about a month ago if you're certainly covered by the replacement program (I did) and just this past week my adapter wire split at the base (not near the magnetic end), but they still replaced it. Cha-ching, another out of warranty freebie from Apple (two top cases, battery, and now this).

    But who knows, you might be in luck. Bring your laptop (or serial) and adapter to your local store.
     

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