Buying tomorrow from Apple vs Resellers - Thoughts?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by OldCorpse, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. OldCorpse macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2005
    compost heap
    Tomorrow is the day I'm pulling the trigger on a i7 27" iMac - 01/14/10.

    I waited since October when they were announced, because I wanted to see if there were any Rev A. problems reported. Apparently there are quite a few, but I really need the computer as a bunch of projects is near and I'll need it.

    Sadly, I'm almost sure I'll have to swap it out - perhaps a few times, even, before I get a satisfactory unit. I'm willing to live with a very slight yellow tint and keep the computer until Apple solves the problem, then using Apple Care, get it fixed. But if there are more serious problems, like flickering that's not fixed by the firmware, then I'll be forced to swap. I'm an editor and I need a reasonably performing computer. As some of you know, I'm keeping a checklist, and this is what I'll be looking at when I get the computer:

    "1)Screen - Stuck/Dead pixels
    2)Screen - Flickering screen, with brief blackouts
    3)Screen - Yellow smudge at the bottom/elsewhere
    4)Screen - LED backlight bleeding through in corners when screen is dark/black
    5)Screen - High pitch whine from screen at max brightness after 30 minutes; also after turning down brightness by 30%
    6)Screen - Dust or fingerprints trapped behind the monitor glass
    7)iSight - Dead pixels
    8)iMac as external monitor function not working
    9)Noisy HDD - clicking or whirring, rumbling and whining
    10)Constantly running fans at high volume
    11)Intermittent hiss from external speakers hooked up
    12)Frequent beachballs, despite not many programs running
    13)Slow boot up
    14)Random self generated restarts while using Firefox
    15)Airport problems
    16)Bad USB ports"

    Now, given the sheer volume of problematic iMacs, with some people swapping out 4-5 even 9 iMacs, odds are high I'll be forced to swap too.

    This is why I intend to buy it from Apple. Originally, I was going to buy from an out of state reseller, due to the 10% tax here in Los Angeles, but since odds are high I'll need to swap out, the resellers appear to be a really bad deal. I've looked at their return policies, and some even charge a re-stocking fee of 15% on a faulty computer! Others won't accept an opened box computer (how can I check it if I don't open the box?:confused::rolleyes:), all demand a rigmarole of getting RMAs and worse - you are responsible for all return shipping costs - which can be substantial on a $2200 computer that's large and needs insurance. I looked at powermax, expercom, b&h, abt, macconnection, but it's all the same suckage. Further, and this also is bad, it seems like you wait a lot longer on your computer through a reseller. I like Amazon best of all, but they don't carry the i7 - and I need it for editing. All in all, it looks like resellers are not a good deal in this situation.

    I thought about buying from a reseller and then just going to Apple to have it fixed, but you are taking a risk that Apple won't simply swap out - plus what if at some point they regard a few dead/stuck pixels or the yellow tint as "within spec" and refuse to do anything about it? You'd be out of luck once you bought from a reseller, cause your 14 days don't apply. At least this way I can use the 14 day return to get Apple to swap it out.

    So, bottom line, it looks like I'll be going with Apple and eating the 10% tax.

    Anyone have any thoughts on the relative merits of going with a reseller vs Apple online for the i7? Maybe I missed something? TIA.
  2. HLdan macrumors 603


    Aug 22, 2007
    Your thread title is completely misleading. Most of your OP is about negatives about the iMac and problems you will be looking for. Shame you can't keep a positive head about making a purchase. You seem to already know that you will have to exchange it many many times. Well, with that frame of mind, you will.
  3. powerbook911 macrumors 68040


    Mar 15, 2005
    yeah, if you don't want to settle for an i5 (i'd suggest Amazon), then Apple is about the best. They will let you return it for another, or a refund. I don't know how many times they'll let you do that, but they (apple) are pretty good and provide Fedex labels.

    I don't know if you have a discover card, but if you log into the discover site go to "shop discover," and then choose Apple from the pull down window, you can get 5 percent back on the purchase with using your discover and the special link, which makes up some of the sales tax.

    Or, at least, go through a place like fat wallet and get 1 percent back on your purchase, yeah $20 is pretty lame, but I always think it's worth it.
  4. OldCorpse thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2005
    compost heap
    Thanks powerbook911 - unfortunately, no Discover, but I'll be buying with my AmEx card, which lets me be covered (after buying Apple Care) for a total of 4 years :eek: which should be enough... I mean, after 4 years, it'll be time for a new computer anyway :D.

    Thanks for the tip about FatWallet, I knew about them, but forgot. Gotta go with Apple, so that's where it's at for now, unless somebody comes up with a very fancy reason why a reseller might be better.
  5. bobob macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2008
    I think it is a wise choice going with purchasing from Apple directly in this instance. For only a couple hundred dollars saved I believe it would be a false economy to buy from a reseller with all the attendant restrictions you describe.

    On the other hand, I think you're overestimating the degree of risk involved when you say "odds are high I'll be forced to swap". My personal guesstimate is that 2 out of 3 of the new iMacs work flawlessly. I was fortunate enough to receive one myself. Now, that isn't the 99.9% quality control I expect from Apple, but if I could get those odds in Vegas, I'd lose a lot slower...

    Perhaps that isn't the blanket reassurance one may hope for, but at any rate, I wish you all the best when you buy your ticket in the iMac lottery today!
  6. OldCorpse thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2005
    compost heap
    Thank you bobob for the good wishes. I just pulled the trigger:

    27-inch iMac
    Ships: 2 weeks
    Delivers: within 5 business days after shipping by Standard Shipping
    Part number: Z0GF
    2.8GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7
    4GB 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x2GB
    1TB Serial ATA Drive
    ATI Radeon HD 4850 512MB
    8x double-layer SuperDrive
    Apple Magic Mouse
    Apple Wireless Keyboard (English) and User's Guide
    Country Kit
    Recycle fee

    AppleCare Protection Plan for iMac - Auto-enroll
    1 $169.00
    Ships: Within 24hrs
    Part number: S3134LL/A

    Cart Subtotal$2,384.00
    Free Shipping $0.00
    Estimated tax $230.88
    Order total$2,614.88

    So, by my reckoning, 2 weeks + 5 business days = 3 weeks or somewhere around February 4-5.

    And now I wait, in equal measure excited and apprehensive. I can only hope that if there are to be any problems, they transpire the very first day, as I intend to mount this beast on an articulated arm and I'm not looking forward to having it mounted than 2 weeks later discovering that it flickers and I have to dismount it and ship it back. So when I get it I'll first play with it for a day or two before mounting, and hope that all problems (should there be any, fingers crossed there won't) show up before I mount it on the arm.

    Edit: just got the email from Apple. Says: delivery February 3. We'll see.

Share This Page