Buying used rMBP 2012

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Killua, Mar 24, 2018.

  1. Killua, Mar 24, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2018

    Killua macrumors newbie

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    Mar 24, 2018
    #1
    Hi new here,

    Have not owned a macbook before, currently using a chromebook which cannot run any programs so I was waiting on the new 2018 MBP to drop to buy one.

    However, my friend has offered to sell me his old MBP late 2012 (purchased Dec 2012) 15" Retina model: 2.6GHz quad core i7, turbo boost up to 3.6GHz, 8GB 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM, 256GB flash storage (is this SSD?)

    Is this still a good machine in 2018? I only plan to use it for Microsoft office and want to get into photo/video editing. What is a good price for it (have been offered £300). Also I read that the battery is glued so only Apple can replace it for £199 - are batteries still available for this model? am I able to upgrade to 16GB RAM?

    Thanks
    (PS hes a good friend so able to trust, only problem he reports is that sometimes when battery gets to 40% it may go to sleep and needs to be woken up by using the power cable.)
     
  2. l.a.rossmann macrumors 65816

    l.a.rossmann

    Joined:
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    Brooklyn
    #2
    Batteries still available, upgrading to 16 GB RAM isn't something most people who can do that will do economically and it is totally undoable by the end user.

    These have the U8900 defect that caused an extended warranty program. If you are handy with a soldering iron and tiny QFN chips and replacing it if necessary, buy it. If not, this will end up kernel panicing or blank screening on you shortly after purchase.

    300 pounds is a good price I'd say for sure.
     
  3. treekram macrumors 68000

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    Honolulu HI
    #3
    Yes, the MBP has a SSD - it has a proprietary SATA connector so if you want to replace it, you either need a SSD which has the same proprietary connector or get an adapter. The memory cannot be upgraded. Apple still will replace the batteries but I can't tell you when they will stop doing so or this model.

    I'm a non-professional video editor maybe a step above casual. I have a 2012 Mac Mini which has the same CPU as the MBP you describe. I use Adobe Premiere Elements and it's quite usable. Non-professional photo editing should not be a problem.

    The big issue with this MBP model is that it was subject to a "Repair Extension Program for Video Issues" (the program ended at the end of 2016).
    https://www.apple.com/support/macbookpro-videoissues/

    If you want to buy this machine, you should probably call Apple and see if they can run the test at a Genius Bar to see if this MBP is affected. I don't recall many, if any posts on this forum about people having this issue prior to the release of High Sierra 10.13.3. However, since then, there have been numerous people who have had GPU kernel panics on the affected MBP's. So if you decide to purchase this MBP, don't install High Sierra. If your friend already has High Sierra 10.13.3 on it, ask him if he's had kernel panics (unexpected restarts).

    I see l.a.rossmann has a post as I edited. If you do have the issue in the future then he's the one that knows about how to repair it without spending a ton of money. But as I mentioned, this is not a widespread problem (at least on this forum) except for those that have High Sierra 10.13.3.
     
  4. mtneer macrumors 68030

    mtneer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2012
    #4
    I too have a 2012 rMBP. Will Apple replace the battery if I walk in and offer to pay for it, or will they pull out their black box battery diagnostic test and refuse to deal with me (in the hope that I can be pushed into paying for a new machine)?
     
  5. treekram macrumors 68000

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    Honolulu HI
    #5
    If your MBP says the battery needs service, I think they will likely gladly take your money and replace the battery. If they determine that your battery does not need service and thus, they will not replace the battery, you can try an authorized service provider to see if they'll do it. Have you had a problem with Apple or know of people who have had problems with this?
     
  6. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #6
    You cannot upgrade ram. It doesn't use dimms, so there's no upgrade to purchase there.

    That model had some gpu problems. You can see the now expired repair program here. It's more than 4 years past the original sale at this point, so it is not covered. Those were not anywhere near as bad as the 2011 models.

    The battery service indication appears when you drop below 80% battery capacity. Old batteries can also swell regardless of remaining capacity. You would still be able to obtain battery service directly from Apple today. It costs around $200 in the US. Do note that these models will be added to the vintage list on the next round, since they hit the >5 years out of production milestone this year. When a model hits vintage status, repairs (in particular depot repair) become subject to availability of replacement parts.

    With that being said, I would personally turn this one down. The comment about the battery means you will need to look at service, so you're in it for a minimum of £500 pounds on a 6 year old machine. You would also want to look at the charger for signs of potential fraying.
     
  7. Killua thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 24, 2018
    #7
    Thanks for the input guys, I had a look at the repair program link posted above which says a small percent of machines were affected. If his never exhibited any of the listed GPU problems is it likely safe or will it eventually fail? I'm also not sure what the battery situation is whether or not I really need to upgrade. It just seems much cheaper than dropping 2k+ on a new machine.
     
  8. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #8
    Those aren't the only alternatives. I suspect once you factor in the cost of the battery replacement, this one won't be that competitive in terms of pricing. For a used machine, I would probably (personally) go for a somewhat newer one without a discrete gpu. It's a somewhat frequent point of failure in general in Apple laptops. The repair program was there because these were failing at a higher than normal rate. The 2011s were much much worse. I actually suspect the 2012s on their own would not have been sufficient to warrant a repair program.

    For what it's worth, a lot of people on here complain about keyboard failures on the most recent 2 generations. Some of them have been posting for a long time, meaning they didn't just create an account to post a random problem.
     
  9. Killua thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 24, 2018
    #9
    ah thanks for bringing up the keyboard failure didn't know that was a thing, now i'm even more unsure, may just wait for the 2018 drop and see there is to offer? or look at alternatives to macbook..
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #10
    Nope, if you want a new battery they will will replace it. I have a 2012 rMBP and its battery is in good shape (for a 6 year old computer), they still processed my request and will replace my battery. Parts are constrained and as such I have to wait 2 weeks just for the parts to arrive, and then another week for the repair. Its a bit excessive, but its my hope going down this path, it will give me several more years of usage for the laptop.
     
  11. cflem macrumors regular

    cflem

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    #11
    the 2012 rMBP is a pretty powerful machine though... even today.
     
  12. Glockworkorange macrumors 65816

    Glockworkorange

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    Chicago, Illinois
    #12
    There was also a screen defect in some of these that has Samsung screens. If I recall, you’re okay if you screen was made by LG.

    This was my first MBP and I loved it until somehow the trackpad cracked. Machine should be fine for your uses. What is that, like $550 bucks? That’s a good deal.
     
  13. Killua thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Mar 24, 2018
    #13
    I suppose my only concern right now is whether a GPU failure is imminent on the machine or if it can last at least a few years...hes reported that there has been no unexpected restarts, probably would need a battery replacement at most. Even if I don't spend additional £200 to replace the battery I suppose I could run it off the power supply and would still be a better stationary machine than what I have now.
     
  14. TAJones99 macrumors regular

    TAJones99

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    Orange Park, FL
    #14
    I just picked up 2012 rMBP off eBay and I haven't had any issues so far, runs great .
     
  15. treekram macrumors 68000

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    #15
    The problem with this strategy is that for the 15" models especially, you need a healthy battery to maintain performance. For most (all?) 15" models, AC power alone won't provide enough power to run at peak performance. If the cost of the battery will dissuade you from buying the MBP, you should probably forego this MBP.

    About the video issue, l.a.rossmann knows about these things and if he says the video issue in question is not a huge deal, I would tend to believe him. If it came to that point, what would be involved is looking for somebody you can trust to do the repair. There was a recent post from a poster in the UK who had this done recently and they paid £89, which may have been on the high end.
     
  16. l.a.rossmann macrumors 65816

    l.a.rossmann

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    #16
    As I stated in a PM, I still think this is an absolute steal for 300 pounds. You can buy the machine plus a high grade soldering setup to fix the U8900 issue when it becomes a problem and still be well under what the machine is actually valued at. I would jump at the opportunity to purchase that machine for 300 pounds. Whether or not it is likely to fail(which it is, no doubt) is irrelevant IMO at the price point you are being offered.

    You could literally sell this on eBay as broken and get more than what you are paying for it right now.
     
  17. nigelbb macrumors 65816

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    Dec 22, 2012
    #17
    Any MBP with a quad core i7 has excellent CPU performance. CPU progress has stagnated since the Sandy Bridge 4-core i7 was released & the current MBP isn't a whole lot faster. Newer models might be lower power consumption & give better battery life but little better CPU performance. When they start shipping a MBP with the 6-core Coffee Lake CPUs that will be the first decent CPU performance jump in years.
     
  18. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    Boston
    #18
    I've said this many times, I really beleive the 2012 machine is the best laptop apple produced. I'm still using it and its working well
     
  19. Killua thread starter macrumors newbie

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