Soon to 'switch'

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by iPC, Sep 17, 2003.

  1. iPC macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #1
    Ok, my last reason for not switching is no longer valid; PB updates.

    After work today I am going to the Apple store (Palisades) to check out the new 15" PB.

    I am thinking the following is good:

    1GHz
    combo
    60GB
    512MB (BTO)
    AE card (BTO)
    $2099


    My biggest worry is AppleCare. This is the first release of a new style (rev?) of 15" PB. Should I get AC, or wait 9 months and see how reliable the machine is first? It will mainly be for home use, and the occasional trip to the g/f house, or the very occasional road trip for work.

    The other thing is:

    1.25GHz
    combo (BTO)
    80GB
    512MB
    AE card
    $2399


    What should I do??? 1 or 1.25? SuperDrive is out of the question. AC now or later?

    Any help is greatly needed, and appreciated.

    THANKS
     
  2. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #2
    Re: Soon to 'switch'

    -iPC

    Ahh. It is time...

    You are going to get varying opinions on AppleCare, though I always get AppleCare for my machines. Not only do you get all of the stuff that is said on paper (and TechTool), but if you do need to call them, or go to an Apple Store, you're royalty.

    As for the machine - get the big guy. The backlit keyboard baby!
     
  3. TheFallGuy macrumors member

    TheFallGuy

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    #3
    Depends on what you need. In 15"

    1GHz
    combo
    60GB
    512MB (BTO)
    AE card (BTO)
    $2099

    or

    1.25GHz
    combo (BTO)
    80GB
    512MB
    AE card
    $2399

    I went with the 1.25Ghz, combo, 60GB, 512MB, AE. I'm not going to be burning DVDs, so changed that. I also got AC because I'm switching over to mac from PC. I mean who knows what could happen over the next couple years. It'll hopefully keep me satisfied and my laptop from becoming irreplaceable. Have fun!
     
  4. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #4
    All I "need" is a new laptop. My 4 yr old IBM no longer charges batteries, so it is permanently tethered to the wall (not much point to that).

    I like linux, so OS X has had me intrigued since the 10.0 beta came out.

    The backlit keyboard is nice, but not enough to make me want to spend $300 to get it.

    To be honest, I would buy the 12" if not for the lackluster screen.

    Another thing; is it better to buy from apple.com or from brick and mortar store? If I am doing a BTO, I presume that the meatspace store will have to order it, and I am stuck making 2 trips (1 to buy, 1 to pick up). Is that true? If so, go to store to play with machine, then order from home???

    *sigh*

    I hate thinking about big purchases. If I had more $$$ I would just buy the 1.25 with SD and 1gig of RAM....

    Anyone willing to make a donation to the "Chris is poor - computer fund" today?!? :cool: :rolleyes: ;)
     
  5. jxyama macrumors 68040

    jxyama

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2003
    #5
    obviously, if you are a student, go to apple.com and get the edu. discounted version... (which i think you are, considering the prices...)

    you can add backlit keyboard for $70 BTO to a 1 GHz 15" if you wanted to.

    i'd go for the 1 GHz if 60 GB HD is enough. i assume your 1 GHz 512 MB RAM BTO is one DIMM. in such a case, 1.25 GHz would have to be BTO'ed to get one DIMM 512 MB stick, i think... so that will add some cost to the 1.25 GHz...

    if you can live with 768 MB RAM, get a 512 MB on your own and add it to the 256 MB that comes with stock. you can get more bang for your bucks that way. the only reason to pay apple $$$ to get the 1 DIMM 512 MB stick is if you intend on going all the way to 1 GB RAM.
     
  6. Mav451 macrumors 68000

    Mav451

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2003
    Location:
    Maryland
    #6
    1.25Ghz no doubt. The extra 250mhz will means it lasts that much longer. From the info you've provided, it seems you get 20gb more HD space (always welcome on laptops) AND 250mhz more power
     
  7. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #7
    Not good

    Well... I just got back from the store. One thing I do know, I will not be buying my next machine from there. HORRIBLE SERVICE. I walked in, went straight to the display of the new 15" PB, looked at it for a good 3 minutes, looked over at the sales guy a few times, played with the PB some more, looked at the 12" for a bit, looked at the salesperson again, walked over to the software section (games), looked around for a bit, walked back over to the PB display, fiddled for a second or two, looked at the salesguy again, and then walked out the door. I was in the store for nearly 10 minutes....

    NOT ONE SINGLE EMPLOYEE GOT SO FAR AS TO SAY EVEN 'HELLO' TO ME! :mad:

    A 28yr old white guy walks into a Apple store ready to spend $2200+ and can not even get a employee to acknowledge his existance.

    Amazing.

    To tell you the truth, I got so mad that I was not impressed by the new 15" PB! Something I have been waiting to buy since the 12' and 17" Al PB's were first announced way-back-when. Now I am questioning why I want to buy one. If I do, it will be from MacMall or MacConnection.
     
  8. lmalave macrumors 68000

    lmalave

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Location:
    Chinatown NYC
    #8
    Re: Not good

    Man, you are one passive-aggressive dude. Did you think to just walk over to a salesperson and say, "Hi, I'm interested in the PowerBooks." It's a store, not a restaurant. It's not like you're sitting down at a table waiting for service. It's perfectly OK to walk up to salespeople at a retail store.
     
  9. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #9
    Re: Re: Not good

    I was the store manager of a higher end furniture store for nearly 2 years. I know how retail works. The guy in front had a customer (a waste of his time - but that is another matter) and the guy in back was too busy fooling around on a iMac to notice me. They are there to sell to me. It's not my job to make sure that they greet someone that walks in the door the day after major new hardware is announced. They should know better, and I hold them accountable. If one of my salespeople ever did that (and they did from time to time - I always made sure that the ignored customer received proper service from me), they got to go home early. No questions asked, no excuses, no matter how busy.

    I think this is why Apple should have their salespeople on commission; so they actually care what is happening in the store. Hourly wages and discounts on stuff don't cut it for most people. Motivation is the key. Today, the Palisades Mall location of the Apple Store was not motivated to sell a PowerBook to a customer that knew what he wanted (1.25 by the way), and had the funds to buy it.
     
  10. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #10
    Re: Re: Re: Not good

    -iPC

    I agree completely. Comission with a draw all the way. The ol' "Five Feet, or Five Seconds" rule.

    Currently, it depends on the store, of course, and the style of the manager. That's unfortunate. The shaumburg store here in the Chicago area was notorious for doing what you tell, for a few months at any rate. However, if I go to the Michigan Avenue flagship, I have to beat them off with a stick and a frozen trout.

    If it's worth your time, this manager needs to be reported to Apple Corporate.

    It's unfortunate that this experience seems to have put you off.
     
  11. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #11
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    I think it might be worth their time more than it is worth mine...

    How do I go about contacting "Apple Corporate" today?
     
  12. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #12
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    -iPC

    408.996.1010

    I'd also try retail@apple.com
     
  13. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #13
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    Thank you.
     
  14. lmalave macrumors 68000

    lmalave

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Location:
    Chinatown NYC
    #14
    Re: Re: Re: Not good

    Well, I have no retail management experience, but as a customer I wouldn't get mad and certainly wouldn't storm out of a store if a salesperson didn't come up to me. Take buying shoes, for example. I've walked into a Foot Locker and been immediately helped. And I've walked into a Prada and not immediately been helped. It's also of course worked the other way around: I've walked into a mall store and not gotten helped, and walked into a high-end store and been fawned over. But the point is, it didn't matter at all to my satisfaction as a customer, because as soon as I knew I wanted to try on a shoe, I merely flagged down the nearest salesperson and said, "Hi, I need this in a size X". You gotta take control of the situation, dude. Life's too short to wait for things to come to you.
     
  15. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #15
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    It's called service.

    Besides I just called the store, and they can't sell a machine with a upgraded hard drive (Douglas told me to order from apple.com instead - at least he is a nice guy).

    *shrug*

    I just don't get it.
     
  16. lmalave macrumors 68000

    lmalave

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2002
    Location:
    Chinatown NYC
    #16
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    Well, I would distinguish between sales and service. But obviously from your point of view you were dissatisfied so I guess that's what actually matters. Personally, I much prefer to not be bothered by salespeople until I need help.

    As far as online stores - you should definitely look at resellers - they don't charge sales tax unless they're based in your state, and they'll usually throw in freebies like extra RAM. I bought my iBook from ClubMac and was totally satisfied.
     
  17. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #17
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    -iPC

    Well wait a sec. You're talking BTO. Apple stores can't do BTO's there. That's done farther up the supply chain.

    Apple stores aren't really full retail stores, it's a model similar to the Gateway Country idea, but do have some limited inventory. The Apple store is overarchingly designed as a showspace, information, and ordering center. If you were to walk in to the store and talk BTO, they'd be happly to consult with you on design and ordering it there. And hold it for you when it comes in.
     
  18. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #18
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    I don't understand the point of that. That moves the incentive from selling computers (what brings most people in the door) to selling add-ons such as iPods, iSights, dig cameras, and software. This must be why most of the stores aren't doing that well. The big money goes to apple.com or MacMall or whomever, and then the retail locations gets the chump change stuff, and the occasional computer sale.

    Are most people that are buying Mac's buying them in the non-BTO fashion? Is that why the included RAM is now 256MB across the board as a minimum for the PB's now? Strange...

    This seems like a convoluted strategy for selling something. "We could do it better, but that would cost us a bit more, so we will do it this other way instead."

    Computer stores are supposed to be akin to car dealerships; "we can get you anything you want that is a option." It should just be a matter of timing. Maybe some smart engineer will figure out that if the mem, hdd, AE card, etc were all easy to change out (4 screws or less) then the stores could sell more, better, and faster.... My ThinkPad requires the removal of one screw if I want to upgrade the memory or the hard drive. This is from something made in 1999. Does everything have to be so damned difficult to do the proper way? No.

    Either way, once I settle down, I am reasonably certain I will purchase the 1.25GHz model with the combo drive for $2399 and spend the $200 on aftermarket memory...

    Unless Gobi happens to the iBook soon of course ;)

    http://www.barefeats.com/al15.html

    Why is the slowest (1.3GHz) Centrino still so much faster than the PB's on the CPU intensive stuff...? (Not to mention Alienware Sentia can be had with 1.4GHz and 1GB for about $2k even - no OS X though - which is why I want a Mac to begin with).
     
  19. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #19
    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Not good

    -iPC

    Well, you're blurring a line here. RAM is installable at the store. Along with any software, and AE card - essentially 'User serviceable' parts, though the real definition Apple sets.

    Adding drives to a PB is a BTO.

    If you want to know what is what, go to www.Apple.com and take a look at the store listings - you'll see a little "BTO" next to those that you can't get off the shelf at an Apple store - it is built-to-order after all.

    The same is true with car dealerships. If you ask for a car that is considered Built to Order - you'll wait. Of course, a car dealership's definition of BTO is based on what is on the lot.
     
  20. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #20
    Do you mean they will install software at the store?
     
  21. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #21
    -iPC

    I could be talking out of my a** as I've never needed it myself, but I think so.
     
  22. joeyjojoe macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #22
    yes they will if you have applecare. you just take the software you purchased to a macgenius and they will help you install.

    side note, i wanted a single 512 DIMM on the powerbook and they don't do that in the store. the sales person said I could buy the 512, have someone help me install it, and then sell the two 256 DIMMs on eBay. i wondered why they just wouldn't do an exchange + difference.

    also, the people at the grove store in LA are horrid at helping you. i went in and looked for a hiarddrive, couldn't find it, had to flag someone down, was told it would be where i was previously looking, had to drag the person over and show them it wasn't there, get told it was upstairs, couldn't find it upstairs, asked a macgenius, got told to get someone from downstairs to help me, went downstairs and told the guy what the macgenius said, have the salesperson get pissy at me and the macgenius, and finally got the product. i'm sorry but that is too much work. i understand they have a laid back atmosphere and all, but when it takes 30 minutes to do something you can do at best buy in 5, its not acceptable.
     
  23. e-coli macrumors 68000

    e-coli

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2002
    #23
    Yes, they'll install software there, and no you don't need AppleCare, but they will charge you.

    I like the fact that the employees at the Apple store leave you alone. I thinks it's nice and low pressure. They just encourage you to "hang out" with the products. It's refreshing.
     
  24. iPC thread starter macrumors 6502

    iPC

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2003
    Location:
    East Windsor, CT
    #24
    I was not there to hang out. I have done that in the past, and someone has always walked up to say hi and see if I needed help with anything. Today the answer would have been "yes, I want to order this here... but I have a few questions first" or something similar. Nobody bothered to find out why I was there. That bothers me, a lot.
     
  25. patrick0brien macrumors 68040

    patrick0brien

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    The West Loop
    #25
    -iPC

    Well, you're a hard man to please, Charlie Brown.
     

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