I have waited a long time and now ready to buy a new MAC

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by RustyMac, Nov 11, 2007.

  1. RustyMac macrumors member

    Mar 21, 2007
    I have been waiting and waiting to purchase a new Mac. I have been using the School's (where I taught) computer (dual G5s) and now would like to own one. My last Mac computer that I bought was a G3 clam style IBook (tough little computer). I have always used laptops at home because of comfort but these new Mac Book Pros are way too much for me right now. I am looking at the 24" 2.4 Ghz IMac with a wireless keyboard and mouse. The 2.8 Ghz is nice but I feel that the 2.4 is a better deal for the money (I hope). I will be using this computer for Graphic Design running Adobe CS3 (both Print and Web software).

    I am a grad student and I know I can get the student discount through Apple but Apple charges tax, there goes my student discount! I have also been looking at MacMall and MacConnections. They are offering the new IMac with $100 off mail in rebate which comes to $1,694.00. That is less than the student discounted price through Apple (which is $1,749.00), plus the shipping will be free after a $40.00 mail-in rebate, a free Epson or HP all-in-one printer after-mail-in rebate, free Nova Development - PARALLELS DESKTOP 3.0 FOR MAC after mail-in rebate and last, NO TAX! The only thing with these computers are that the don't have Leopard pre-installed and will come with the Leopard DVD. I have been told by Apple that all the computers with or without Leopard installed are the same computers and run exactly the same. Plus, it gives you the option to run Tiger, Leopard, and Windows on one computer.

    Ok, now for my question, is this a good deal? Has anyone had experience through MacMall? Is this the right time to buy one of these IMacs or should I wait some more? Is it better to buy from Apple? I will be saving around $110.00 if I buy it through MacMall. Any info or opinions would be great. Thanks!
  2. GSMiller macrumors 68000


    Dec 2, 2006
    Congrats on your decision to buy a Mac. Last fall when I bought mine I was originally looking at the MacBook Pro but found I got much more bang for my buck by going with the iMac as a similar MBP would have been like $3,500!

    Anyway, I have never dealt with MacMall, although I have heard quite a bit of the other MR users talk about them buying from there. I always buy from the Apple Store mainly because of my student discount, which as you said doesn't mean much after you have to pay tax! If I wasn't a student I would probably shop elsewhere. I think you're getting a great deal at MacMall IF you can get all your mail in rebates. I hate mail in rebates and therefore if I can get a deal without having to fool with them I jump on it because half the time they don't even honor them. Read the fine print of the rebates VERY carefully before you place your order and you should be golden.

    I think now is just as good a time as any to buy an iMac. Seeing as how you're not getting the fastest processor you're not too worried about having the fastest and greatest machine. When I bought mine I got the base processor as well (2.16 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo) because they wanted too much for just a slightly faster processor.

    I'm assuming it will come with Tiger preloaded and a Leopard upgrade disc installed. If you want to use Leopard I recommend upgrading from Tiger immediately before creating any user accounts even. I say this because when I upgraded to Leopard a lot of my software was acting funny. iDVD wouldn't burn, iTunes would crash when I'd try and delete a song, and Yahoo Messenger would crash when I'd close it. When I created a new account everything would work fine though! So to fix the problem without having to do an "archive and install" (which might of not even worked), I created a new administrator account and transferred all of my files to it. Now everything is working find and dandy.

    Sorry this post got kinda long, but most of it's info that would have saved me a lot of searching. Good luck and I hope everything goes well with your new iMac.
  3. Genghis Khan macrumors 65816

    Genghis Khan

    Jun 3, 2007
    Melbourne, Australia
    haven't really got any knowledge of macmall sorry

    but as you are getting an iMac, i would advise you to get some 3rd party RAM for it (apple RAM is faar too expensive)...and you'll have a sweet machine

    i did the exact same thing you did about 6 months ago....never looked back

    good luck:)
  4. scienide09 macrumors 65816


    May 5, 2007
    buyer beware

    Just a caution against MacMall. Their return policy sucks, by which I mean it's nonexistent. You cannot, for any reason, return a product to MacMall. If it's defective, they'll tell you to deal directly with Apple.

    I say go to the Apple store. Call the 1-800 number, explain the discounted prices you found elsewhere, and ask if Apple will match along with your education discount. It can't hurt to ask.
  5. Mindflux macrumors 68000


    Oct 20, 2007
    ^This. Even if you want to return the product, you can't!
  6. ktbubster macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2007
    Have you considered getting a regular macbook? For what you are doing (photoshop... graphic design and 2d stuff mostly it sounds like) a macbook would be able to handle it really well, and with the new ones being SR and able to get up to 4gb of ram, I think you may want to look at those since a graphics card isn't really much of an issue in your case.

    Also you are used to a g3 ibook clamshell, so the screen size would be great and probably akin to what you are used to.

    And imac will be fantastic, but a mid range white macbook plus a decent external monitor might be better for your needs.

    Just thinking outloud... errr.. out typed? hmmm.

  7. panda macrumors regular

    Mar 15, 2004
    good choice

    unless you are on the tightest budget and need portability (macbook), i would also agree with the imac.

    the imac is simply stunning and the base model 24" makes great sense. there is no comparison when it comes to screen size and usability generally.
  8. amac4me macrumors 65816


    Apr 26, 2005
    Congrats on your decision to buy a Mac! I would suggest that you make your purchase directly from Apple.
  9. RustyMac thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 21, 2007
    hmmm, this is another route. I am not sure through if I would max out a Macbook. I now have more clients and it seems like I am picking up more clients lately. My work is a mix of, print work (illustrator and photoshop), package design, web design (dreamweaver and flash), interior design, and company indentity/branding. I am now thinking of the new 2.8Ghz IMac with a wireless keyboard and mouse. It would be great to go with the Macbook Pro and a large screen but I feel that I would be connected to the screen all the time, so why not go with the a 24" Mac. Portability is great but most of my clients deal with me through emails. Maybe an IMac for now and a MacBook for later. I also feel that apple will be updating all their laptops soon. I am not sure though if the 2.8Ghz is a good and/or an over kill?

    Oh, and I will be purchasing it through Apple. It's about the same price with the student discount compared with MacMall. Plus I feel safer going with Apple even if I have to pay a little more.
  10. mdutch macrumors newbie


    right now is a good time to buy an iMac. atleast I think. I'd only ever buy directly from Apple....well because i'm paranoid like that. lol. and a bit of a perfectionist. I'll be purchasing a 24" iMac with hard drive upgrade next month (surprise x-mas present for my father) with a military discount. no tax. (cuz it's better than the education one) I'm sure most people who use a military discount go through apple's government employee discount...but I'm using military[dot]com. Their apple discount plus no tax ends in January. If I remember correctly...you don't actually have to be a member of the military (or relative). You just have to be a member of the site.

    Eligibility: Active Duty, Veteran, Retiree, Reserve, National Guard, Government Employee, Military Families, Military.com Members.

    you can just be a member who happens to be a military enthusiast, etc...

  11. art4med macrumors newbie

    Nov 12, 2007
    I am an med.illustrator/anim and the new iMac is great. Bought one after having a G5 iMac for 2.5 yrs: worth every dime. Look at REFURBished boxes at Apple.

    Though *I am about to upgrade to a Pro, IF I WERE YOU, I'd make certain I could afford AppleCare (in my 23 yr experience, it pays for itself several times over) and go ahead for the iMac. It IS, after all, quite portable, esp with the BT keyboard.
    I use a 6x8Wacom tablet (get the Intuos, it outlasts Graph x 5), so that's the most hassle.
    Buy as much RAM as you can pack in that sucka, its easy to install yourself.

    A good screen makes all the difference in the world
  12. RustyMac thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 21, 2007
    Well! I did it. I purchased a 2.8Ghz iMac using my student discount. I didn't go for the BT Keyboard because I need it to run strong for design work plus I like how you can still attach your USB flash drives to it. Also, I want to try to play Games on my IMac and I heard it's nice having the number pad. I didn't do any upgrades to the computer (as I have learned on here). I will be purchasing 2 more gigs of RAM and I think this baby will fly. I know I was back and forth on the 2.4 and 2.8 but I feel that the 2.8ghz Core 2 Extreme is like having an iMac Pro ;) Since I'll be doing lots of design work on this beast, I figured go with something that will do the job for a long time but don't get me wrong the 2.4Ghz is still a super nice machine and can do it all too. I hope that I did the right thing!
  13. RustyMac thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 21, 2007
    Still have to pay tax with this discount. I spoke to Apple and they compared both the military and student discounts and the student is better.

    I sure hope I did the right thing by buying this iMac. I have been reading more discussions and now I am getting second thoughts. I am wondering if I should cancel and wait till February. I ordered mine today (Sunday) which I am sure I can cancel it on Monday. Man! why is this so hard! I feel if I keep waiting, I won't have a computer but I don't want to purchase something that will be upgrage in a couple of months. This sucks! On average it cost about $2500 for a powerful Mac after everything. This is a good chunk of change and I don't see spending more money in the near future.
  14. mdutch macrumors newbie


    i just figured that out. they don't show the tax online when you're using the military discount until you get to the part where u enter your credit card info after you sign in. annoyinggg.

    and umm, I think I am just going to buy one now (after 1st of december). the perfectionist in me doesn't like getting something when soon after something better comes out, but the world of technology is constantly changing. If things update every few months i'll always be waiting. I'm just going to buy it. trying to wait for the next best thing will just give me a 3 month long headache.

    congrats on ur iMac though, or good luck with whatever you choose.

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