Looking for low cost Yosemite Mac

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by norcalcorey, Nov 8, 2014.

  1. norcalcorey macrumors newbie

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    Nov 8, 2014
    #1
    Allow me to introduce myself, my name is Corey and I live in Northern California. I have not owned a Macintosh computer since my Macintosh IIci. Over the years I've been forced to use Windows computers for various business and economical reasons. At some point I decided that my android phone was a POS and switched to an Apple phone which was a 4S, now I've managed to get an iPad air, AppleTV, airport extreme, iPhone 6 etc. i've managed to influence my family to all use Apple products and now it's time for a replacement notebook for my Windows 7 laptop.

    What I'm looking for is the lowest cost MacBook, MacBook Pro, MacBook air that will run Yosemite for just basic computing tasks. I do know more than utilize pages, numbers, web surf, very light photo editing, and face time. So I believe I can get by with the model from 2009 or later. The only requirement I think that I must have his 4 gigs of RAM? I'm looking to spend $300 or less. I've been scouring Amazon, eBay, and craigslist and just wanted to get some model recommendations, or at least minimum model recommendations so that I can use his computer for the next year or so. Not too concerned with 13 vs 15" as I have gotten used to the iPad screen I think. I do want lipo batteries but I think that is becoming pretty standard even on the 09 models. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. 0xyMoron macrumors 6502

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    California
    #2
    $300 or "less" is a very very low budget, not even a decent hackintosh can be built with that amount of money.
     
  3. norcalcorey thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 8, 2014
    #3
    A1181 models readily available or for $200, not the most ideal set up for Yosemite, however with 4-8 gigs of RAM I would think it would run smoothly enough for basic computing?
     
  4. DaKKs macrumors 6502

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    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #4
    You could probably get a white unibody for that amount. Throw in some extra ram and you're good to go.

    If i were you, i'd go for something with slightly more ram. I'm routinely maxing my 4GB, which is why i just ordered a 8GB kit.
     
  5. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

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    #5
    Best choice in my opinion : White Unibody (Late 2009, Mid 2010) with 4 GB of RAM minimum.

    If you don't need much storage, go for a SSD and use the replaced hard drive for your backups.
     
  6. theLimit macrumors 6502a

    theLimit

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    #6
    I'm currently using a late 2009 unibody Macbook. It runs Yosemite just fine. I paid under $300 for it a couple years ago and made some minor repairs. It only has 4GB of RAM so it beachballs pretty often. This model can take 8GB of RAM, so an upgrade is in my near future. I'm sure it'll get me through a couple more years before I retire it to be an iTunes server.
     
  7. DaKKs macrumors 6502

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    #7
    I'm pretty sure the White Unibody takes 16GB ram.
     
  8. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

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    #8
    Late-2009 : 8 GB max.

    Mid-2010 : 16 GB max.
     
  9. DaKKs macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Right, forgot that The White Unibody is two different models.
     
  10. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Location:
    Atlanta
    #10
    I routinely get 2010 Macbook 7,1 models off eBay for $300-400 depending on condition. I put in 8GB of memory ($75) and replace the small slow HD with an 500GB SSD ($250). Sometimes a new battery is needed ($60). I use a Yosemite USB stick to install the OS. Zero problems with the several I have done for family and friends.

    With Black Friday and Cyber Monday only being a few weeks away, watch for sales on upgrade parts like memory and HDDs or SSDs.
     
  11. norcalcorey thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Nov 8, 2014
    #11
    Thank you very much! I am comfortable buying a unibody now and I will hopefully find a good deal soon. I will post results.

    Anyone able to say get a model a118x and up or something? Or just know that the white plastic macbooks are the unibody models mentioned?
     
  12. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

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    #12
    a118x are NON Unibody Macbooks !!

    Unibody Macbook are : a1342

    Late-2009, model identifier 6,1
    Mid-2010, model identifier 7,1

    Take a look at Mactracker (App Store).
     
  13. gooser macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 4, 2013
    #13
    my question is why do you need yosemite for the tasks you mentioned?
     
  14. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

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    Brasil
    #14
    The mid-2010 white macbook is specially interesting because it comes with a pretty capable gpu, the 320M. According to gfxBench, it performs the same as a HD 4000.
     
  15. DaKKs macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Pretty sure its on par with HD3000, not HD4000.
     
  16. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

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    #16
    Not really according to gfxBench. I'm unable to post the links now, but search on Google "gfxbench hd 4000" and "gfxbench 320m". You'll find surprising results.
     
  17. BrettApple macrumors 65816

    BrettApple

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    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Heart of the midwest
    #17
    $199 on eBay a few months back.

    Mid 2009 MacBook (A1181 | 5,2). 2.0GHz C2D, 9400m, 2GB/120GB.

    Threw in 4GB 800MHz DDR2 I had laying around, and a 128GB SSD for $60. Works like a champ. As an added bonus, the stock battery still holds a half decent charge.

    It's a secondary Mac and will eventually be a Christmas present to a family member whose shared iBook G4 finally died.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

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    May 3, 2014
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    Kentucky
    #18
    I'm running Yosemite on a mid-2009(pre-Unibody) Macbook with 4gb RAM.

    It takes a while to boot, but runs fine once it's up. When I get around to it, I'm going to throw an SSD in it, and hopefully cure the slow booting.

    I think that the 2009 model white Macbooks(along with the 2008 Aluminum) are the oldest Macbooks that can officially run Yosemite.

    I paid $140 for my Macbook locally at a Pawn shop. Mine even came with the original "T type" charger, which I prefer to the current "L" design.
     
  19. Bruno09 macrumors 68020

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    #19
    You are correct.
     
  20. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Location:
    Atlanta
    #20
    https://www.apple.com/osx/how-to-upgrade/

    1. Check your Mac hardware.

    To get details about your Mac model, click the Apple icon at the top left of your screen, choose About This Mac, then choose More Info. These Mac models are compatible with OS X Yosemite:

    iMac (Mid 2007 or newer)
    MacBook (Late 2008 Aluminum, or Early 2009 or newer)
    MacBook Pro (Mid/Late 2007 or newer)
    MacBook Air (Late 2008 or newer)
    Mac mini (Early 2009 or newer)
    Mac Pro (Early 2008 or newer)
    Xserve (Early 2009)


    2. Check your version of OS X.

    While you have the About This Mac window open, check what version of OS X your Mac is running. You’ll see it listed beneath your serial number. You can upgrade to OS X Yosemite from the following:

    OS X Snow Leopard (v10.6.8)
    OS X Lion (v10.7)
    OS X Mountain Lion (v10.8)
    OS X Mavericks (v10.9)
    Have an older version of OS X? Learn how to upgrade

    Upgrading from previous
    versions of OS X

    Upgrading from OS X Snow Leopard
    If you’re running Snow Leopard (10.6.x), update to the latest version of Snow Leopard before you download OS X Yosemite from the Mac App Store. Click the Apple icon and choose Software Update to install OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8, the latest version.

    Upgrading from OS X Leopard
    If you’re running Leopard and would like to upgrade to OS X Yosemite, first you’ll need to upgrade to OS X Snow Leopard. You can purchase OS X Snow Leopard here.

    3. Upgrade to OS X Yosemite for free.

    Visit the OS X Yosemite page on the Mac App Store. Click the download button, and follow the onscreen instructions to begin your upgrade. If you don’t have broadband access, you can upgrade your Mac at any Apple Retail Store.
     
  21. neilly93 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2013
    #21
    I'm running a late 2008 MacBook Aluminium, albeit upgraded as far as it will go - it's the 2.4 ghz version, and I've increased the RAM to 8 GB as well as adding a 240 GB SSD. It runs Yosemite like a dream, and much smoother than Mavericks actually. Boot time has decreased since the upgrade, from over a minute on Mavericks to less than 30 seconds on Yosemite. Most apps open in 2-3 seconds.

    Amazing to think that this is possible with a 6 year old laptop.
     

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