$4500 macbook broken ....

grimnebluna

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
3
0
hi

i have a question on how you would decide what's best:

first off: i work multiple hours daily with my macbook.
second: i don't have much money. (musician)
third: i live in a very expensive country ....

back in 2011 i have used all my saved money to build a real power house (to last for at least 5 years!):

Macbook Pro 2.3Ghz i7, 8GB RAM
300 GB SSD
plus I removed the SuperDrive and built a second 300GB SSD into as a separate boot drive.


About a year ago I spilled something over the keyboard: broken.
Last week I fell and the LCD broke.

Now i have 3 options. And I can't decide. How would you decide?

option 1:
Let it repair: about $1200-2000 depending on where I would send it to repair
up sides: cheaper than a new one
down sides: can't afford it. repair lasts at least 3 days

option 2:
A new macbook with the same CPU/RAM specs: $3000 (only 500GB SSD without a second one ..)
up sides: USB3, retina display, 2x thunderbolt instead of 1x
down sides: REALLY can't afford it

option 3:
repair it myself. The material and shipping costs are $200 at max. for the display. Keyboard about $500.
But i'm not a skilled technician. Especially the display is quite hard to replace.. I could use a friend's broken macbook pro as a test subject. but still ...
up sides: very cheap compared to the other two options..
down sides: high risk of damaging my macbook?


what do you think, what should I do?


thanks!
 

5to1

macrumors 6502
Mar 9, 2008
302
48
Surely you could pick up a refurb/working 2011 MBP for $1200-2000 which would render option 1 stupid (assuming your estimate is accurate).
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G3
Jul 30, 2003
9,606
2,352
Delaware
Apple's flat rate repair program will repair problems that would usually be covered under warranty (factory defects or other internal, non-accidental part failures, etc), and the system is now out of warranty, but still a supported system (not yet called obsolete). A flat-rate repair would not be available to replace items that would no doubt be considered accidental damage.
 

grimnebluna

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
3
0
Surely you could pick up a refurb/working 2011 MBP for $1200-2000 which would render option 1 stupid (assuming your estimate is accurate).
I didn't think about this option! thanks, i'll check it out.


Apple's flat rate repair program will repair problems that would usually be covered under warranty (factory defects or other internal, non-accidental part failures, etc), and the system is now out of warranty, but still a supported system (not yet called obsolete). A flat-rate repair would not be available to replace items that would no doubt be considered accidental damage.
that's too bad .. :-(
 

thundersteele

macrumors 68030
Oct 19, 2011
2,985
7
Switzerland
Buy a cheaper MBP or a different brand of laptop. You already overspent when you bought the last one, with going for double SSDs when the prices were really high, and probably by overspending on CPU upgrades etc.

You should be able to get a 2011 model used for ~$1000 (maybe a bit more in your country). The RAM and SSDs in your MBP are most likely still useable. So that is one cheaper option.

Second option would be to go for the cMBP and again re-use some of your existing hardware.

Also have a look at the refurbished store, used market, etc. If you can have it repaired for under $1000 it is probably worth it, but I wouldn't spend more.
 

esskay

macrumors 6502
Jan 3, 2008
305
7
This doesn't help if you need to use it on the go, but could you hook up an external monitor and external keyboard and use it as a desktop machine?
 

Jamesesesesess

macrumors 6502a
Nov 26, 2011
594
67
Why would the keyboard cost $500? You don't need to replace the entire top case to do that. You can get the keyboard here for $13 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Keyboard-for-Apple-Macbook-Pro-15-Backlit-A1286-2009-2010-2011-/380845717558?pt=PCA_Mice_Trackballs&hash=item58ac2c7836). It's a little tedious to unscrew all of the screws but it's cheaper. Otherwise you can get a new top case for $148 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Apple-Macbook-Pro-unibody-15-A1286-2011-Topcase-Touchpad-US-Keyboard-/160877623013?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item25750db6e5).

As for the display, I'm assuming you were planning on replacing the display itself instead of the entire upper case/lid. You can get an entire new upper case for $360 (http://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Glossy-LED-LCD-Screen-Display-Assembly-for-MacBook-Pro-15-A1286-2011-/221258270951?pt=US_Laptop_Screens_LCD_Panels&hash=item33840548e7). That's a pretty simple part to replace since it's all put together, you just need to attach it to the base.

I would definitely just replace the parts myself. You put a lot of money into it so at least if you replace the parts yourself, you can sell it for maximum profit whenever you want to upgrade. Just make sure you have the necessary tools and you have good instructions. iFixit is a great resource.
 

nickandre21

macrumors 6502a
Jun 21, 2012
534
1
there are other repair places that would fix it for you at lesser then what apple would charge, but then can't real tell if their an after market part or an apple original. I would advise you not to source parts your self and carry out the repairs, there are a lot of fragile connectors on the logic board you could damage one if you do not know what you are doing rendering the logic board useless but however if you have a friend who is skilled take him through ifixit and hopefully get your mac fixed. Since you are a musician and possibly on the move the other option i had in mind would be of no use but anyways if it may be of help you could connect a usb keyboard or a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse and use an external display with your mac in clam shell mode. You can save up and decide when you have sufficient funds
 

thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,841
1,766
option 2:
A new macbook with the same CPU/RAM specs: $3000 (only 500GB SSD without a second one ..)
up sides: USB3, retina display, 2x thunderbolt instead of 1x
down sides: REALLY can't afford it
Your option 2 is kind of flawed. You could get something close to those specs quite a bit cheaper, and you should not compare clock speeds across generations. They don't match up. It's also ridiculous to go for too many upgrades when they're expensive, because they don't guarantee longevity. The extra .1 ghz is nothing. You would never see the difference. You could probably salvage the ssds. Beyond that my question would be how you are using the computer.

I wouldn't try to repair it. Given the liquid damage, you may also have underlying logic board damage. Also a lot of people have been experiencing trouble with that generation. Why not go for a refurb on something of significantly lower cost? If you're trying to play games on it, no notebook is going to give you 5 years of solid gaming. If you're using it for anything that really pushes the gpu, it's the same problem. If you're really demanding on it, you won't get 5 years. Below that the only big differences between one 15" and another are ram and ssd space. If you look at Apple's history, they've had repair programs on quite a few generations of discrete graphics due to logic board failures. If you don't actually require that, you would be better off saving money on the low end one, as the 2.3 won't last you any longer than the 2.0 as far as cpu is concerned.