New harddrive or new laptop?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by SarahMac, Jul 23, 2007.

  1. SarahMac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #1
    I bought a refurbished ibook G4 just four months ago and the harddrive has taken a dive.
    The certified dealer I bought it from has quoted me a $350 price tag to install a new harddrive. It seems like a lot--but I know little about it and he is the only dealer within an hour's drive. In the past, I've kind of felt a bit taken advantage of with this guy, so I'm wondering if there are other options. Is it possible to buy a harddrive and replace it myself? Or is that begging for trouble?
     
  2. iBookG4user macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #2
    If you were to do the replacement yourself, here is a guide for you. But if it's only been 4 months then you should be under warranty.
     
  3. Squonk macrumors 65816

    Squonk

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2005
    #3
    Replacing your own drive is not that big of a deal if you are comfortable working with hardware. And you can get a lot of drive for your money these days. I think that $350.00 is excessive, but what exact hard drive does he propose to put in there for this price? What kind of warranty on his work does he give you?
     
  4. SarahMac thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #4
    He only gave me a 3 month warranty. As you can tell, I don't know a whole lot about Macs. I bought an ibook G3 four years ago because I had seen iPhoto and loved it. Mostly I use it for word processing (I'm a writer) and I baby the thing. One power supply died so I bought another. That power supply died and fried out my hard drive with it. That was in March 2007 and I bought this used (refurbished is what he called it) ibook G4. When the hard drive died last week I started wondering if all Macs were so repair-prone. I looked up Consumer Reports and it says Apple laptop reliablity is undistinguished. I'll say. And (more fool me, it turns out) I never purchased the Apple Care.

    I'm more familiar with Windows computers (that's what we have at work--and since I'm the Library Media Specialist, I trouble-shoot those quite often), but I really like my Mac. In fact, I bought an iMac for my girls--also from the same certified dealer. But I'm starting to get the feeling he's taking advantage of me. He's always had me believing that only certified Apple technicians can do repairs on the Macs.
     
  5. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2001
    Location:
    Tuttlingen, Germany
    #5
    What did this fellow do before that made you feel taken advantage of? Was he the guy who sold you the iBook G3 and faulty power supplies?

    Laptop hard drives do tend to die a lot more often than regular hard drives, probably because laptops are toted around and banged up a bit. Regardless, $350 is a hefty price for a new hard drive. I mean...you couldn't have paid much more than that for the computer itself!

    Still, if you aren't familiar with taking apart laptops, I wouldn't recommend trying that repair yourself. At the very least, you must know a friend in the area who's geeky enough to do it. If not, shop around :eek:
     
  6. iBookG4user macrumors 604

    iBookG4user

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2006
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #6
    I wouldn't suggest buying Macs from this guy anymore from what you say. What don't you buy them from www.apple.com/store ? This guy gave you 1/4 the warranty that Apple gives you and he's overcharging for the repair. I say sell the iBook on ebay, use the $350 you saved from the repair and the money from the iBook and buy a MacBook from Apple's website.
     
  7. GTiPhone macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    Location:
    Island Heights, NJ
    #7

    Honestly, $350 is more than your ibook is even worth. I shudder to think of what you may have paid for it 4 months ago. Whatever you paid, it wasn't a good purchase. No warranty (3 months is NO warranty), no support, no help, only a guy who wants to repeatedly take advantage of you.

    What's more, you bought a machine that is so obsolete that even Apple wouldn't be much help to you. I can probably guess what you paid, and for a fraction more you could have gotten a refurbished (which is really a synonym for brand new in apple world) MacBook, which would have a full warranty, continuous support, and would not have a failed hard drive to begin with.

    From a very experienced Mac user, I suggest you take it back to the guy, DEMAND he take the thing back and give you your money, regardless of his "3 month warranty". Then take that money, plus the cash you've saved up to replace the hard drive, and buy a more up to date product. In the computer world, you HAVE to stay up to date if you don't want to worry about problems/support.

    Buying newer machines at higher price tags are better investments than getting much cheaper machines that are no longer in the game.
     
  8. SarahMac thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #8
    I feel so violated!

    Oh my god. I feel so taken advantage of. Of course, mostly I'm kicking myself for not taking the time to educate myself on the subject. I just want to use the computer--I hate taking the time to learn. So when my laptop died in March, I had just got rolling on this novel and didn't want to take time waiting for a new computer--or learning a new system. So I bought the refurbished G4. Fits in the same case, all looks the same.

    ...I shudder to think what you paid for it four months ago.

    Well, trust me, I'm shuddering now. I paid--get this--$795 for the computer, $150 for the update, upgrade, test and transfer from my external hard drive, and THEN (and this is what made me feel taken advantage of at the time) $70 for a power adapter. Because he said the power supplies have been causing problems (that's what fried my G3) I had gone with this other power supply that he said Apple recommended. Of course--he never gave me the original power supply. So basically I paid for a power supply!

    Ahhhhh! I promise I will never again buy without doing proper research. Guess that's what I get for being so trusting.

    The Mac Exchange in Spring Lake, Michigan. Steer clear.

    Thanks all for the information. And since none of you are taking my money--I can trust you! :)
     
  9. Royale w/cheese macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #9
    I kind of feel like I am spamming as I just linked this page a few days ago. :) But these guys do pretty good work and are nice. I have dealt with them before on a 12" powerbook and they seem to know what they are doing. They say $50 plus parts for all repairs, you may want to call them and weigh your options and do some cost evaluation, you may just want to part the ibook out, cut your losses and buy a refurb macbook.
     
  10. ktbubster macrumors 6502a

    ktbubster

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    US
    #10
    holy crap... 795??? and this guy is AUTHORIZED by apple to resell? You could have gotten a refurb macbook from apple for just another 200!

    First of all you SHOULD go back and demand your money back and that he take back the computer like someone else mentioned or that he atleast give you a comparable amount for it (500+). He probably will refuse, but I would hold my ground. He basically scammed you by charging that much for everything and not giving you the parts that CAME with the computer.

    I would then report him to Apple and tell them what happened so they can be aware and he can be taken off of their certified reseller list.

    If you can't get any money back (once again, be firm, because this is ridiculous.. far too many people just say "oh well, stupid me" and dont' want to take the time to do anything).. I would sell the computer for parts on ebay and use that money and the money you saved not fixing it and go get a refurb white macbook low end from apple for 800... it will have a 1 year warranty and be thoroughly checked as well as run circles around the ibook.

    Good luck.
     
  11. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #11
    You should get a fine harddisk under $80, just google for "laptop hard drive". That leaves $270 for replacing it. If you have never opened a computer and used a screwdriver, don't do it. The iBook isn't the easiest computer to replace a harddisk, but anyone who isn't afraid of it, can follow instructions carefully and can work concentrated for half an hour should be able to do it.

    $350 is definitely too much.

    Here is an alternative if you are afraid to do the replacement yourself and can't find anyone to do it: www.apple.com/store offers a refurbished MacBook 2GHz for $999. That machine would come with full one year warranty and is brand new and a current machine. Sell your iBook on eBay. Describe its condition correctly, but someone will be keen to pick it up and fix it.
     
  12. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2001
    Location:
    Tuttlingen, Germany
    #12
    Wow, that's just terrible! You should really try to nail this guy for all he's worth.

    What guys? (I see no link)
     
  13. Max 1666 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    #13
    :)You can buy an External Hard Drive 2.0 USB, from Amazon they are great and a good price
     
  14. elfin buddy macrumors 6502a

    elfin buddy

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2001
    Location:
    Tuttlingen, Germany
    #14
    That wouldn't do her any good because she wouldn't be able to boot her computer from it. She needs a new internal, or at least an external FireWire. Better still, a new laptop ;)
     
  15. SarahMac thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Location:
    Michigan
    #15
    Confrontation

    Okay, so I confronted the guy and said I felt that he had taken advantage of me in the past (paying for a power adapter and all that) and that $350 to replace a hard drive was excessive--especially when I bought that laptop from him only four months ago.

    He said he had never lied to me or cheated me in any way. He sold me a used machine with a 3 month warranty--more than you'd get if you went to ebay. Also, he put on all updated software for me--this time and in the past. But, he would be willing to replace the hard drive for me for $150.

    I said I had someone in Grand Rapids who'd replace it for $120--and then this guy (we'll call him Mike) asked about the speed of the hard drive. He said they come in different speeds and he always puts in the top speed 7200 rpms(?). Is he telling me the truth? Does it make a difference? I mean, I've heard about processor speed (gigahertz isn't it?) but don't know much about rpms (I thought that was a stick-shift car thing)

    Man, all this educating myself takes a lot of time! My husband says I should just walk away now. I'm leaning toward let him fix it for $150 and then never go back. Am I the fool?
     
  16. ktbubster macrumors 6502a

    ktbubster

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    US
    #16

    Yes. DO NOT go back there. Chances are after all the time he gave you defective parts, this will be the same as well. If you want to throw away 150 dollars then fine, but it is in your best interest to bring your husband down there with you (not that I am saying you can't do it by yourself, but having a guy with you might make him a little more wary of trying to pull something) tell him that the price you paid was much more then that computer was worth and that you want him to take it back ad refund your money because this all was rediculous.

    If he refuses (that computer on ebay would have been all of about 400 dollars tops, which is what he refuses to notice) then DO NOT waste anymore money at this place. Let apple know that one of their resellers is cheating customers with faulty parts and rediculously high prices, order a refurb macbook (someone just got a CD blackbook for 949 on the apple store... you can get a white one for less i'm sure 849?) sell your current ibook for parts like was mentioned (someone will buy it and fix it) and then iuse the money you would spend on fixing the old one combined to help pay for your new computer.

    DO NOT deal with this guy again. If you do, it would be throwing away money.

    edit: yes.. there are different speeds in harddrives. For what you do, it probably won't be making much difference... so there wouldn't be much of a point to pay for a faster harddrive in an out of date computer that you don't really need.
     
  17. ktbubster macrumors 6502a

    ktbubster

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    US
    #17
    There are some good computers for sale in the marketplace.. used, but i'm sure good from people here... check those out. Like this link

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=333330

    Another 700 dollars gets you a MUCH better computer, and then you can sell your current one for parts if you can't get anything back... still only a few more hundred and you don't have to worry about crap anymore from that idiot.

    AND it has a warrenty for another 2 months and you can still buy apple care for it (for another 2 years warranty from apple) during that 2 months! THAT's what you want to look for!
     

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