Buying second hand Macbook Pro - Need some advice

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by CasuallyDressed, Jun 24, 2018.

  1. CasuallyDressed macrumors 6502

    CasuallyDressed

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Bournemouth, UK
    #1
    Ok so I've got an iPhone 8+ and an Apple Watch series 3, which I love. I've always been a Windows kinda guy though so both my laptop and PC are running Windows 10. A lot of the guys at work own Macbook Pros though and they keep bugging me to pick one up. Found one on Gumtree (our version of Craigslist) since I don't wanna pay full whack for a new one, and I hoped someone might be able to advise me on if it's a good deal:

    Macbook Pro Retina 15"
    i7 2.3GHz
    16gb RAM
    256 SSD
    Currently running Mountain Lion (I guess he hasn't updated since he bought it new)
    Model number is A1398, which I pitch at late 2013 (could be wrong though)
    A couple of cosmetic marks (rubber feet missing - can these be replaced? Ding on the outer shell)
    Screen and keyboard are apparently immaculate, comes with charger but no box I think

    He was asking for £580, but I got him to agree on £560.

    So yeah. Is this a good deal? Is it a hassle to update from ML to High Sierra? Is Bootcamp still the best way to go as far as sticking Windows 10 on the Macbook? If I can dual boot the Macbook then I can ditch the Windows laptop and make some of the money back.

    Also, what are some essential accessories? I'm a total Macbook noob if you can't tell :D

    Thanks in advance :)
     
  2. New_Mac_Smell macrumors 68000

    New_Mac_Smell

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2016
    Location:
    Shanghai
    #2
    What do you want/need it for exactly? Price seems about right, but do you seriously want to spend that money on a 5 year old computer just because it's a Mac? I just think you'll get this and compare it to a recent and equally priced Windows computer and have a bad time really. If it's something you want then it's usually worthwhile getting a newer one that fits whatever your needs are.

    256GB SSD you may find a struggle, especially if you want to dual boot.

    Rubber feet can be replaced easy enough.

    Updating the software is pretty simple.

    As for accessories, that entirely depends on your use. I dunno, a memory stick?

    No idea if it's a good price, have a quick look on eBay to get a better idea of the value. Expect it to last 2 years as it'll be obsolete and vintage after that.
     
  3. glhiii macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2006
    #3
    Sounds OK to me, but it is 5 years old. You could look around for a 2015 model and see if you can't get it for the same price or slightly more. I have a 2105 13" MBP and am extremely happy I have it instead of the 2016 or 2017 version.
     
  4. CasuallyDressed thread starter macrumors 6502

    CasuallyDressed

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Bournemouth, UK
    #4
    I’m gonna be using it as my work laptop, so nothing strenuous. Bit of Powerpoint, Spotify, Youtube, browsing. No gaming or video processing or anything like that.

    I only opted for the 15” model because my laptop is my Netflix machine when I’m trapped in a hotel for a week.

    I feel like 256gb SSD will be enough. I don’t store files locally, everything is kept on external sticks or drives. The 128gb SSD in my Windows laptop is barely 20% full.

    I didn’t wanna spend upwards on £1k on a bit of kit I’m essentially using to test the waters. I’ve never owned a Macbook; in fact I have very little experience with them. £560 seems like a reasonable amount to give it a test run and if I really like it then in a couple of years I can put an investment down and buy a new one. If I hate it then I can just sell it on and I can’t imagine I’d be losing a lot of money.
     
  5. mikzn macrumors 6502a

    mikzn

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2013
    Location:
    Vancouver
    #5
    I agree with the above, if your OK with a 5 year old Mac - this is a good deal for an i7 processor and the maximum 16g of memory, the SSD @ 256 is usable but would be better @ 500 g - IMHO - but you can always add an external drive for more storage.

    That model A1398 could be several similar MBP models from 2012 to 2013, and depending on the exact model and date of manufacture the battery is probably a glued in version and not easy to replace - so it might be good to check the battery status ( over 900 cycles?) in case you are facing a battery replacement.

    My Guess is that the SSD is also a special mac SSD and not easily replaced.

    On the plus side you have many of the ports missing on later versions and an awesome keyboard ( unlike the newer models with the butterfly keys)

    This is a good price for that model and a good i7 MBP with 16 g ram !
     
  6. CasuallyDressed thread starter macrumors 6502

    CasuallyDressed

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Bournemouth, UK
    #6
    Just got back from having a look at it. Seems in good condition, apart from the ding that I knew about. I’m gonna put a dbrand skin on it anyway so not fussed about that.

    Battery is on 460 cycles and in “normal” condition.

    Reason for not updating is that he factory reset it, which puts it back on the OS it shipped with.

    Overall I seem happy enough with it :)

    He’s emailing me an invoice (selling it through his company) so I haven’t 100% bought it until I’ve paid that.
     
  7. mikzn macrumors 6502a

    mikzn

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2013
    Location:
    Vancouver
    #7
    wow 460 is low and probably means it was not used much - seems like a good deal.
     
  8. csurfr macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #8
    Did you find out what model year this was? For some reason I thought my 2015 15” was the same model number. Maybe they reuse them?
     
  9. CasuallyDressed thread starter macrumors 6502

    CasuallyDressed

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Bournemouth, UK
    #9
    I didn’t, no. I should be getting it tomorrow night so I’ll have a look then.
     
  10. Fancuku macrumors 6502a

    Fancuku

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2015
    Location:
    PA, USA
    #10
    15" Retina MBP with the 2.3GHz processor means it's a late 2013.
    Late 2013 had 2.3 and 2.6
    Mid 2014 and mid 2015 had 2.5 and 2.8
     
  11. csurfr macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #11
    2015 also had the 2.2, though I’m pretty sure you’re absolutely right.
     
  12. Expobill macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 30, 2018
    #12
    I would buy that, that model is upgradable and should fly with 16GB RAM.
     
  13. Fancuku macrumors 6502a

    Fancuku

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2015
    Location:
    PA, USA
    #13
    You are right, the base model of 2014 and 2015 had the 2.2 with the 256 storage.
     
  14. ocnitsa macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2011
    #14
    I have a 2012 15 inch retina MBP and it’s still really great, so I imagine e the 2013 will be, too...one thing to consider is dead pixels...I have like 2 tiny patches and a few others....I don’t like it, but it’s livable....so if that would bug you, be sure to check...screen wouldn’t necessarily look damaged, you’d just see it on a white background.
     
  15. CasuallyDressed thread starter macrumors 6502

    CasuallyDressed

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2014
    Location:
    Bournemouth, UK
    #15
    Thanks for the tip. There are a couple of things I want to double check when it gets delivered tonight now. Making sure all the ports are happily working, checking the speakers, and now checking for dead pixels.
     
  16. smbu2000 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2014
    #16
    Also the late 2013 base model shipped with a 2.0 i7 and 8GB of RAM.

    The late 2013 15" MBP is still a very capable machine.
    I just picked up another one myself the (2.6 i7/16GB model) for a pretty good price as it didn't have any internal flash memory and came without any accessories. I'm running Sierra from an external drive on it at the moment until I can pick up a flash drive for it. (I already had an 85W Magsafe charger with Magsafe 2 adapter.) Runs very nicely so far and I do enjoy the keyboard on it much more than my main mac (2016 15" MBP).

    As far as windows is concerned, I don't believe that you can run it from an external usb drive unless you do a "windows to go" installation, so you would need to install it on your main 256GB drive.

    One other thing to check for is any screen coating issues:
    https://www.macrumors.com/2017/11/17/apple-extends-free-staingate-repairs/
    The extended repair is 4 years from original date of purchase and most of the late 2013 models are most likely past or close to passing that mark, as the mid 2014 models released in July of 2014.
     

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