Cheap iMacs on ebay

Discussion in 'iMac' started by gabo864, Apr 21, 2017.

  1. gabo864 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 13, 2012

    My mom is visiting me in a couple weeks and we don't really have a desktop computer at home, I always take my computer to work so she wouldn't have anything while staying with us. I noticed there are iMacs for sale under $200 on ebay. They are old computers from 2007 and 2009, but all I need is a devices for internet browsing and youtube videos probably. She gets online just to keep in touch with family. Do you think $150 for a 2007 iMac is a good buy?
  2. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a


    Sep 1, 2007
    Just for browsing and youtube, maybe an older iPad is a better bet. Or even one of the new ones for $329 and get a keyboard of some sort. (Brydge is really nice)
  3. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    Very generally, I think you'll find that older eyes don't care for browsing on an iPad. I certainly don't, unless I'm doing a quick lookup away from the computers. I don't know that I'd go as old as 2007 unless it was under $100 (and in full working condition), but if you can get a 2009 (early or late) for a price you can stand they are still perfectly capable computers. I have an early 2009 that took forever to boot when stock but ran OK once it was up. (Added 4 Gb memory and an SSD and it's good for another year or two now.)
  4. Strider64 macrumors regular


    Dec 1, 2015
    Suburb of Detroit
    It depends on a person's eyesight, my father who is going to be 90 years old this May is constantly surfing the web on his iPhone. He just simply adjusts the font size to be a little larger in order to see it better and be less of an eye strain.
  5. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Feb 20, 2009
    You've got to "go into" this with the realization that a 10-year-old iMac can die on you at any minute. Not worth repairing and then you'll be out looking for something again.

    How about a used Mac Mini (2012 model?) paired with a 27" 1080p display?
    Granted, the mid-resolution on a large monitor may "look grainy" to you, but I'm sure she will appreciate the "larger" text (as do most folks with "older eyes").
  6. Fabmac macrumors member


    Apr 5, 2017
    i have an 2007 imac and would never sale it it now has an ssd inside
    This machine last forever... i did so many things with it, Games (wow,lol), video edit, lightroom
    it got slow for some task over the years but it works.
    By far the best computer i buy, i got an air in 2010 and it died in a few years(2)

    (the imac is now stored in his box (original box))
  7. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    A 10 year old machine may indeed fail at any time, but I don't think that one should expect 100% or even 20% death rates, at least not over the near term (a year or so). Newer machines can die too. I myself wouldn't pay more than $75 or so for a 2007, and I probably wouldn't put any money in it except maybe adding memory (cheap and simple). But it really depends on one's needs. If you don't need any extra power and if the job is non-critical, and if you don't pay more than you're willing to lose if the machine dies prematurely, I see no problem with buying an old computer.
  8. Fabmac macrumors member


    Apr 5, 2017
    A friend of mine buy and use very often a G4 iMac, from 2004
    He also has a macintosh from 1984 and all of them work

    Death rates and machine age are not always related.
    A bigger boost than adding memory is adding a ssd to this machines.
    Old iMacs are also easy to repair and there should be a lot of parts around.
  9. jouster macrumors 65816

    Jan 21, 2002
    Got one for the kitchen for $49. I think it's ten years old--it has the white plastic body and thicker stand. I browse, stream BBC radio, play iTunes, watch YouTube and Netflix, do some light photo editing...that kind of thing. My kids use it for online homework.

    No more OS updates, obviously. Certainly no gaming. No doubt things will break as standards and requirements change.

    Right now, it's the best value computer I have ever bought.
  10. EugW, Sep 7, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2017

    EugW macrumors 68000


    Jun 18, 2017
    Heh. I just upgraded my 2009 2.26 GHz 13" Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro to High Sierra. I see these machines on eBay going for about $200-300. However, those eBay machines have 4 GB RAM and a spinning HD. I upgraded mine to SSD, and am considering upgrading it to 8 GB RAM.

    Just be aware that most of the 10 year old Macs don't have hardware h.264 decode, which makes watching YouTube a bit annoying sometimes. If you're watching an HD YouTube stream or Netflix HD, they can stutter at times, and don't multitask well. They will also ramp up the fan, making it noisy. Ideally, you should get something with a GPU that can do hardware h.264 decode, which means something maybe 8 years old. With such a GPU, HD streaming is smooth, multitasking is nice, and the fan doesn't become loud. One such GPU is the GeForce 9400M.

    Note that while the iMacs are similarly priced and have a bigger screen and may have faster CPUs, it is considerably harder on the iMacs to swap out the drive for an SSD.
  11. mpConroe macrumors member


    Feb 14, 2017
    Arbroath (UK) / Wroclaw (PL)
    I would buy used Mac mini from 2012. It's still useful machine and it costs only about $300. You will need hook up a monitor and mouse, and keyboard. The useful iMac with Sierra will costs more than a Mac mini. I know that iMac is more elegant solution, but if you are on the low budget better go with Mac mini.
    I recently purchased used 2012 Mac mini to replace my older Mac mini from 2007. I have good, nice iiyama IPS monitor with wired Apple Keyboard and Magic Mouse 1 (this one on alkaline batteries). This computer is much better than the 10 years old one. It supports Sierra, it runs The Sims 4 smoothly (game from 2014 on 2012 computer!), CS:GO is also fine, everything in 1080p. And you can surf the web with no issues. The old one, I repeat myself, from 2007 wasn't supported by any modern web browser and was struggling with youtube.

    Don't buy 2007 machine. That's my advice.

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