Emergency question: Do you think my wife will be able to tell a refurb from a new?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by xxmarkc, Nov 21, 2012.

  1. xxmarkc macrumors member

    Feb 17, 2011
    At the weekend my wife showed some good sence and accepted my advice that a 13inch macbook pro would be better for her. She could see that the extra £500 for the 15inch was hard to justify.

    Her usage is very light: skype, facetime, facebook, surfing. She wants a mac since she has been sucked in by the clever sales techniques (sometimes I hate Apple). She used to have a nice cheap and cheerful 17inch dell, but she sold that to her friend (for a good price), and gave me the money to put towards a new PC.

    I had moved on to other problems only to find out yesteday that she can't put up with the small screen, and wants to take it back and get the 15"

    I am thinking of keeping it for myself (don't have a laptop), and picking up a 15" refurb 2011 model. Spec is never going to be an issue for her - and I can get a deep discount for a 15" 2011 model.

    Apart from the brown box - which I can explain away - when you get a refurb in your hand can you tell - or does it look like new? I can say Apple are selling it cheap since it is last years model looks indentical on the outside, has different components on the inside that do not impact her use ...
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    My advice is not to lie to her. While you may pull one over her, if she finds out later it will be worse for your relationship. Is saving a few bucks really worth risk impacting your relationship with her. Trust and truth are the bedrocks in building a strong relationship.

    Just my $.02
  3. Ccrew macrumors 68020

    Feb 28, 2011

    I went through a similar quandary and fessed up. I got brownie points for thinking frugally.
  4. leman macrumors G3

    Oct 14, 2008
    Are you seriously asking us whether you should lie to your wife? Dude, this is really messed up :eek:

    Anyway, about your question: refurbs look just like the new thing (minor cosmetic damage/scratches possible) and have the same warranty. I would always prefer a refurb over the new one.
  5. Braniff747SP macrumors 6502


    May 30, 2010
    Los Angeles, California, USA
    Theoretically, 'light scratches' may exists; however, in the several refurb products that I've bought they are like-new in everything except the price tag.
  6. G0meZ macrumors regular

    Aug 9, 2011
  7. Arran macrumors 601


    Mar 7, 2008
    Atlanta, USA
    That may not be a lie.

    I've bought several refurbs and they've all looked brand-new. So new, in fact, that I've often wondered if the refurb channel is just a way for apple to offer their premium priced products to frugal customers without attracting attention from folks who are happy to pay full retail. So Apple slap a "refurbished" label on the product and hope that stigma keeps the less-canny (dare I say snobbish?) customers away. Guess we'll never know.

    Education pricing (here in the US, at least) is a similar pricing ploy to win price-conscious customers without opening up the discount to all.
  8. takeshi74, Nov 21, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012

    takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    No idea. I don't know your wife. I'd +1 the comments to be honest about it. Is she prejudiced against refurbs? If so, let her see the Apple refurb and re-evaulate her prejudice.

    Or you could return the 13, get her a new 15 and get yourself a 13 refurb if you're insistent on keeping a 13. Seems like you got "sucked in by the clever sales techniques" as well. ;)

    That's how refurbs should be. Despite what a lot of carriers pull a refurb should get a once over and should have all issues (including major exterior/cosmetics) addressed. If it's not refurbed then it's just used.

    Sure we will. Refurbs constantly go in and out of stock based on availability of returns.

    Hopefully you now see that justification is highly subjective.
  9. MonkeySee.... macrumors 68040


    Sep 24, 2010
    Can you imagine if it had some light scuffs and went guns blazing to an Apple store to complain!? :eek:

    Store staff: "Sorry Madame but this is a refurb"

    Your wife:
  10. trikky macrumors regular

    Nov 10, 2011
    Don't be a girly-man. :D Refurbs directly from Apple have only one real difference to a brand new computer...you save hundreds of money. :eek: As I'm sure you know already, Apple refurbs come with full warranty and there's nothing wrong with 'em. One time I bought one and it had a small dent on the lid - I phoned Apple, they apologised profusely and sent another for exchange.

    The 17" MBP I'm using right now is also refurb, and came with extra RAM at no cost to me.

    You're saving dollars so you can spend them on something else for your wife. How can she object? :rolleyes:
  11. xxmarkc thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 17, 2011

    My thread was started to generate some light banter - and raise a few smiles which I am sure it has done. I thought a post titled "Can you tell a refub from new" far less interesting.

    I probably will explain what a refurb is - but spin it. My exploration of telling (white) lies is more motivated by my experience of the way my wife's mind works. Logical arguments usually get me no where. She has fessed up to planning the best time to ask me, and the right way to ask, when she wants me to drop cash. I am just playing the game in reverse.

    And it will be me taking it back to the store if there is anything wrong - rest assured.
  12. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I believe honesty is wise if you want to have a good relationship with anyone, especially your spouse. Having said that, on to the refurb question.

    Apple refurbished products are considered by most to be a very good deal, as they're pretty much like buying a new Mac, except for the box.
    • Apple Certified Refurbished Products are available online from the Apple Refurb Store and are not sold in local Apple stores
    • Educational discounts do not apply to refurb products.
    • Refurb products come with the same warranty as new products, and qualify for AppleCare
    • Refurb products have a changed serial number that identifies them as refurbished
    • Refurb products come with whatever OS version and software they originally shipped with as new
    • Refurb products come with the same items in the box as new products, only the box is a plain one, not the new box.
    • A refurb product could have some cosmetic signs of prior use, but rarely do
    • A refurb Mac may have some cycles on the battery, but not a significant enough amount to affect usable life
    • The refurb store inventory changes frequently, sometimes several times a day, and doesn't have any direct relation to upcoming product releases. What's available in the refurb store is determined by what has been returned to Apple.
    • If you're looking for a particular item, refurb.me can alert you when it becomes available.
  13. MCAsan macrumors 601


    Jul 9, 2012
    For Christmas, a birthday, an anniversary.....no way I would give my wife a brown box. :eek:

    When there is no special occasion, yes with her helping in the decision to save some serious money. :cool:
  14. ChrisMan287 macrumors 6502


    Nov 18, 2012
    Just tell her you're buying her a refurb? Be honest.
  15. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    I've seen people make this comment before and it still blows my mind. If someone would be upset that you gave them a $1500 laptop instead of a $1700 laptop(both of which have the same specs), there are bigger issues.
  16. ChrisMan287 macrumors 6502


    Nov 18, 2012
    I completely agree.

    OP, if you're really concerned, get her the new one and get yourself a 13" refurb.
  17. Barna Biro macrumors 6502a

    Barna Biro

    Sep 25, 2011
    Zug, Switzerland
    Haha, you're a great husband man... a real role-model.
    Your wife must be really happy :) Just lie more, lies always leeds to good things... :rolleyes:
  18. Jazwire macrumors 6502a


    Jun 20, 2009
    Chances are she would care less about the laptop being refurb'ed but would care about you lying about it, don't be deceitful.

    Unless she a a cutting edge tech geek she won't know or care, and probably be happy with you for thinking smart. (Unless she reads this thread, then you will be on the couch.) ;)
  19. drsox macrumors 65816


    Apr 29, 2011
    1. Yes, wives are very good at discerning the difference.
    2. It's her money you are spending. If you value your dangly bits, I would explain that a 15in refurb is a good deal for the funds she gave you and that the quality is very good. If there is any left over cash from her initial fund, GIVE IT BACK TO HER.

    Then she might give it back to you for you to spend on your toys.
  20. Kealohilani macrumors 6502

    Sep 16, 2012
    Consider that your wife has also been doing her own research into this purchase and that she may know what the brown box is as well as what an apple refurb is. I'm planning a MacBook Pro purchase (from a hp laptop) and if my husband brought me a brown box I would know what that meant.

    That's not to say I would be mad if he brought me a refurb, I would be thrilled to finally have my macbook. But I would be extremely mad if he handed me a brown box while saying, "Look, I bought you a brand new macbook." I get the little jokes and games between husband and wife but its a better idea to let her in on this decision. Maybe she will surprise you and agree that a refurb is a good idea.
  21. Moyank24 macrumors 601


    Aug 31, 2009
    in a New York State of mind
    If you are considering this an "emergency", you live a charmed life.

    That said, if you lie to your wife and she finds out, you're likely to find out what a real emergency is. ;)
  22. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    This is like one of those jokes, getting a discounted wedding ring from cousin Vito in the grey market.
  23. brentsg macrumors 68040

    Oct 15, 2008
    Tell her that the 13" is more then enough for her needs and crack a joke about Facebook and Pinterest.
  24. xxmarkc thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 17, 2011
    Everything went very smoothly - on the commute home I mapped out my strategy.

    Once home I asked her what she thought Apple would do if I returned the 13. At first she thought I was talking about if they would accept it. Once I had clarified what I meant she said: "Put it in a box and sell it".

    I went in for the kill and said yes loads of people return their mac and Apple calls them refurbs etc etc, and you can get a 15" for £350 off.

    "I don't care if you have to pull the devils horns" she said "I want my 15" laptop".

    Agreement sealed I rushed over to my iMac and placed the order. An Oct 2011 2.2GHz quad core i7 for £1150.

    I have still to decide if to keep the 13. For the last 2 years I have wanted to hit the buy button on a mini but never did since they are such poor value and very un upgradeable. I have tried for the last 18 months to go for the iPad for mobile approach. Whilst I love my iPad 3g and use it loads I often find myself frustrated by the fact that it is not a real computer.

    Thanks for listening.
  25. NewishMacGuy macrumors 6502a


    Aug 2, 2007
    If your wife wouldn't INSIST that you get the 2011 refurb to save a few quid, you've got bigger problems my friend.

    It would seem that you married an English girl instead of a Scottish woman!

Share This Page