Where's the best place to buy an Apple Mac in the UK?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Dreamkatcha, Mar 17, 2003.

  1. macrumors regular

    Dreamkatcha

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    Manchester, England
    #1
    Howdy folks,

    I'm teetering on the edge of switcherdom, but am getting frustrated by the lack of options offered by Apple. What I'd really like is a headless G3 so I can go and buy my own TFT monitor yet I've discovered that you can't buy them new. I like the iMac Snow because it's totally silent (I'm completely obsessed with silence because I suffer from tinnitus and computer noise makes it worse), but don't like the idea of buying a dated, small, curvy CRT monitor when there are now better alternatives available. I don't need anything as powerful as the new iMac as it's mainly just for web surfing, email, office apps and a bit of web design. I find it really annoying that a suped up iMac costs nearly as much as the all singing, all dancing LCD iMac. Someone in Apple's pricing department seriously needs to look at that if you ask me.

    I know that the prices are pretty similar wherever you shop, but some shops try to better one another by offering extras. So my question is, where do I go to get the best deal in the UK? If I end up getting the old iMac despite my concerns I'd need a memory boost and possibly a CD-RW drive. Does anyone know of any shops which offer these as standard?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. :)
     
  2. macrumors 68040

    CrackedButter

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    Location:
    51st State of America
    #2
    Why not buy a laptop if your needs are simple and your want silence?

    They come with a screen btw. ;)
     
  3. Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #3
    The AppleStore is just as cheap as anywhere else - at least for new stuff. Resellerwise - ghc and cancom seem to have a decent reputation. Have you thought about an emac? It's admittedly got a CRT not a TFT but I reckon it's a much better deal than the classic G3 imac.

    Macs hold their value pretty well so for most things the old / refurb prices aren't a lot cheaper than new.

    If you think a G3 imac would suit you - Why not an ibook 700Mhz. They're £799 IIRC. Get some more RAM though. Crucial is good stuff and cheap from their own website.
     
  4. macrumors 68000

    Falleron

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2001
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    Re: Where's the best place to buy an Apple Mac in the UK?

    Have you considered buying refurbished equipment from the apple store? You will be able to get up to about 40% off + you may able to get a decent machine that will last you. These machines may have minor cosmetic imperfections but still have a full guarantee. Maybe its a good source for you?
     
  5. Guest

    #5
    Yeah - a portable

    I'd agree with CrackedButter - I've just got a 12" powerbook and they don't come any more silent - and it'll last you a *lot* longer than a snow imac or emac.

    Have you tried the web design tools you intend to use on one of the iMac or eMac? If you can, go and do it. (what ... you don't have an Apple Retail Store near you in the UK ??!!) :)

    Applestore are great - but a tad slow for 'in-stock' items.

    I bought my powerbook from macwarehouse as in the end as Applestore couldn't promise me better than 5 days delivery - MacWarehouse had in on my doorstep by 10am next day.
    Not too sure about any deals they will give you - I was desperate for my machine so didn't push for anything.
     
  6. Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #6
    There are NO Apple stores in the UK - or as far as I know anywhere else outside of the USA. We have to rely on third party resellers to see a mac (and that ain't very often). The best place to view one of these rare beasts in London is probs MicroAnvika on Tottenham Court Road - though that does PCs too. You may see out-of-date / overpriced macs at PCWorld though....just don't buy one there.
     
  7. Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #7
    I've just noticed your location...you're a Brit so that may be sarcasm;)
     
  8. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    #8
    Macs in the UK

    Hi.

    I'm glad you posted this as I'll be looking to switch to a 15" PowerBook when they're revised - and although I may end up buying from the Apple site (as they offer a student discount), Selfridges on Oxford Street also have a decent spread of technology downstairs... Hope that helps.
     
  9. Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #9
    John Lewis near Bond Street Tube have some macs (everything except 17" PB) on the fifth floor. I got my dual 1GHz Powermac from there in the clearance section. It's supposed to be delivered tomorrow :D The assistant I dealt with there owned a mac himself (which is a novelty for UK stores)
     
  10. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2002
    Location:
    Oxford, UK
    #10
    If you're serious about maybe getting an old machine, try www.shaye.co.uk

    ...can't see that any old "seperate" machine is going to be quieter than a new iMac - it's the second quietest computer I've ever used...after my iBook
     
  11. macrumors 68040

    CrackedButter

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    Location:
    51st State of America
    #11
    Harrods themselves also sell Apple hardware. Also Microwarehouse is a good place to get a mac but try the refurb store on a wednesday but go at around 5am since i tried last week at 6am and half the deals were already gone!

    Cancom are also good place, try and get a UK mac magazine and its full of offers, the best one is called "Macworld", i've suscribed and its full of everything i need to know about macs and apple in general.
     
  12. thread starter macrumors regular

    Dreamkatcha

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    Manchester, England
    #12
    Wow, thanks for the great response everyone. This is a busy forum. :)

    I've considered the G3 iBook and have actually played with one in my local PC World and in Selfridges in the Trafford Centre (Manchester). You'd expect a 12" screen to be very cramped, but it isn't because it's capable of high resolutions. I wasn't impressed with the quality of the screen though - it was like trying to watch the TV with the sun shining directly on it or even like looking at a picture just below the surface of water. I tweaked the brightness and still couldn't make the screen any clearer or more comfortable to look at. I think that would very quickly send me insane. Aside from that I'd love an iBook. £799 is probably about my price limit so the 12" version would be fine except for my concerns about the quality of the screen. I could afford to spend more but can't really justify the expense to myself considering I could get by with a cheap, low end PC (if I didn't hate Windows so much that is).

    I didn't know Apple themselves sold refurbs so I'll look into that. That Shaye store is new to me too, thanks for the link.

    The only thing which puts me off getting an eMac is the noisy fan. Everyone has a different idea of what silent means - I've tried so called silent solutions with my PC and am still not satisfied. This time round I'm accepting nothing less than fanless, which really limits my options.

    Would there be any point ordering a laptop from the US to cut the costs? I've just done a price comparison using a currency converter - the G3 iBook 700 costs £799 in the UK and only £638 in the US (both directly from Apple). Would there be extra import charges to pay?
     
  13. Guest

    caveman_uk

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    Hitchin, Herts, UK
    #13
    Yep, if you get caught importing an ibook you'll be charged VAT (17.5%) and import duty (2% IIRC) plus a charge to cover collection and admin. So a £638 ibook ends up at £762+. Also US customs are a bit twitchy at the moment apparently orders for stuff from the US are taking ages to get delivered overseas. I know I've got an order in customs at the moment... :mad:

    So it's hardly worth the effort of buying it in the states. Also the powersupply will be the wrong voltage so you'll need a transformer or a new supply from Apple UK and I don't think they're that cheap.

    The Apple refurb store is only open on Wednesdays (tomorrow) and what's there goes really fast so get up early. Also it's only for credit card orders.

    The ibook screen is OK though it's not very bright when the ambient light is very bright and it has a narrow viewing angle. It does have a fan but it's really really quiet. I only notice it if there's nothing else on.

    If you get one get some more RAM though - seriously ;) And if you think you might end up needing MS Office get it when you buy the ibook and save yourself £250

    BTW, I didn't know there were this many UK mac owners in here!
     
  14. macrumors 65816

    kettle

    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Location:
    England, Great Britain (Airstrip One)
    #14
    GHC in Derbyshire

    I really like these people. Somewhere with a personal reputation at stake not just a corp. ID to hide behind.

    Gordon Harwood Computers

    I keep going back there. Really good mail order too.:)
     
  15. macrumors 68040

    CrackedButter

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    Location:
    51st State of America
    #15
    If you want you can have my ICQ number, along with anybody else from the UK.

    @Dreamkatcha
    If you do want to go to the refurb store on wednesday, you can actually ring this guy i know tonight instead, if you contact me i can give you the extension number to this (name withheld) guy who offered me a deal last week if i rang him late on tuesday night. But this is for refurbs only but it does mean you are first in the queue. I wanted and missed out on a deal and i could of saved myself £200 on an 12" iBook which would of costed me only £800, instead i couldn't wait and just ordered a normal one.

    If interested then PM me or contact me here on 35115777 (ICQ). I'm not giving out the ext number here since he would have a huge load of calls to take and probably get in trouble.
     
  16. macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2002
    #16
    There's an Apple Store on New Oxford Street, London opposite Point 101 bar, just down from Argos..... true it's not the latest and greatest form of Apple Store...... but beggers can't be choosers.... :p
     
  17. thread starter macrumors regular

    Dreamkatcha

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2003
    Location:
    Manchester, England
    #17
    I'll give shipping one from the US a miss then. Sounds like more hassle than it's worth. I wouldn't like to have to post it abroad if anything went wrong with it either.

    Thanks for the offer CrackedButter, but I'm nowhere near making a decision yet. One minute I'm dead certain I want to get one system or the other and five minutes later I've had second thoughts.
     
  18. macrumors 68040

    CrackedButter

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2003
    Location:
    51st State of America
    #18
    Thats how i felt but in the end i asked myself if i REALLY need it and will it be capable...i answered yes to both and just bought one.
     
  19. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2003
    #19
    i have come accross a few decent apple sellers,

    www.cwonline.co.uk seems ok,

    i think ill be making my purchase through them because of there "buy now pay in 6 months" deal... you put at leat 10% down then pay off the rest in 6 months intrest free..perfect for me..they also do an educational discount :)
     
  20. Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #20
    That's where I bought my QuickSilver from, at that 6 month thing is the reason why I chose them ;)
     
  21. Wes
    macrumors 68020

    Wes

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #21
    The Apple Powersupplies on laptops are clever and detect the voltage and switch to it. (Having lived in the UK and Saudi Arabia (110) that was pretty handy.) It's not worth it, but all he'd need is a small plug changer.
     
  22. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2001
    Location:
    North Side Of Itchy Town
    #22
    It's actually called Square Group http://www.squaregroup.co.uk/ and that's where i bought my TiBook from - good, friendly, reliable and they're Certified Apple repair centre.
     
  23. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2003
    Location:
    UK
    #23
    I got mine from John Lewis.
    You get 2 years warranty as standard and you can upgrade to 5 years for the same price as 3 years of AppleCare.
     
  24. Wes
    macrumors 68020

    Wes

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2001
    Location:
    London
    #24
    I got mine from John Lewis too, I get 12.5% off macs at that place :).
     
  25. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2003
    Location:
    UK
    #25
    Don't buy from the Apple Store - their aftersales customer support is appalling! :mad:

    MacWarehouse have been excellent when I've dealt with them, and John Lewis have always been pretty good too! :)

    Good luck!
     

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