Buying from Apple Refurbished Store

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by kfordham281, Jan 19, 2014.

  1. kfordham281 macrumors 6502

    Dec 4, 2007
    I bought my first Mac back in early 2007 and then later upgraded to the MBP 2007 version via a purchase from the Apple Refurbished Store. It's time to upgrade that MBP (it's served me well). I'm thinking about getting an iMac this time around though since I use my MBP mostly as a desktop since I bought an iPad 2 several years ago.

    Question: A brief look at the refurb store reveals that the vast majority of all Macs are "stock" configurations. I do however see a few that are build-to-order (BTO) configurations. Has anyone here purchased a non-stock Mac from the refurb store? If so, how long did you have to look before finding the model you wanted? I'm trying to find a 21.5" iMac with 16GB of RAM but haven't seen any over the past week or so.
  2. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

    Sep 5, 2013
    Oregon, USA
    Most of the supply appears to have come from folks who have purchased undesirable configs and then returned them. So you have both a supply and demand issue. I would give it a few weeks then breakdown and get 16 + SSD.
  3. Gris Gris Man macrumors newbie

    Gris Gris Man

    Sep 16, 2010
    New Orleans
    I just received a BTO iMac from the refurbished store a week ago ...

    Had to wait a while for it to pop up. I got the 27", Core i7, 8 GB, 3 TB Fusion Drive, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M w/4GB RAM. It was maxed out except for the RAM. The machine was perfect, no flaws of any sort, no screen yellowing, no dead pixels, nothing out of place in the least. The only compromise is it came with a wireless keyboard instead of the wired keyboard I prefer. But the deal was great. So they pop up, you just have to be patient until the one you want appears.
  4. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    Actually this iMac configuration is sold in some Apple stores which means it'll be available regularly in the refurb store. But it is a good deal.
  5. Coug-it macrumors newbie

    Aug 26, 2009
    Do refurbished units only come with the OS X version that originally shipped
    with the particular model or have people gotten newer versions?

    Also would a refurbished model qualify for a free download of, say, Mountain
    Lion or did only new systems qualify for that?

    Guess I'd be specifically interested in what comes with that $509 Mac Mini
    that's been showing up occasionally (don't recall what year that came out).
  6. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    They come with the OS X version that they originally shipped with. However for some models, like the 2013 iMac, that could be Mountain Lion or Mavericks.

    Mavericks would be the free upgrade for OS X now. You'd have to know the specific model to know what the possible OS X versions it could ship with are.
  7. 321estrellas, Feb 6, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2014

    321estrellas macrumors 6502


    Sep 28, 2007
    Why don't you just get the base model and upgrade the RAM yourself? Then sell the 8GB stock RAM to cover some of that cost. I *think* that would even be cheaper than buying a 16GB refurbished model, but at least you don't have to wait!

    It's really the processors and graphics cards you can't upgrade so are worth waiting for in the refurbs.

    PS. I recently bought a Mac Mini from the refurb store and was pretty disappointed it didn't come with a proper Apple box :p Not sure if that's the case with all Mac refurbs.
  8. TheOhioWordguy macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2014
    Check refurb site early and often

    Hi all;

    Of the nine machines we've purchased for our company only one (late 2013 27" iMac) was brand new.

    We've had very good luck with refurbs of all sizes. If you do some searching, you'll find all kinds of advice and opinions -- even those who say that Apple sneaks brand-new equipment on the refurb site as a means to dump old stock when new models are coming out.

    It's my belief that the best time to check the site is around 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. California time. I'm looking for a new machine right now, and I've noticed that's when the site seems to repopulate. I could be wrong; just my experience.

    All machines, whether stock or custom configs, are tested and come with warranties, so I'd say you are safe in buying a custom refurb.
  9. Sam2lucky13 macrumors 6502


    May 26, 2011
    Have you read some of the ridiculous reasons some on this forum return their macs for?

    It borders on psychological defect...I don't hesitate to buy refurbs when they're cheaper than tax free sites.
  10. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    If you're looking for a particular model, you can use to get a notification when it appears on the store.

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