Refurbished Macs from Apple

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by 3lite, Sep 25, 2013.

  1. 3lite macrumors 6502a


    Nov 7, 2011
    Anyone ever bought one? Were there any scratches? Was it practically brand new?
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    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.
    Click the link in that quote for more details on the refurbishment process.
    • 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, can alert you when it becomes available.
  3. 3lite thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Nov 7, 2011
  4. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816


    Nov 24, 2005
    I'm only really here at night.
    been there, done that, neveranottaprblemo :D

    12 macs/lappies/ipads/ipods & counting....

    do it & be happy :)
  5. Anonymous Freak macrumors 601

    Anonymous Freak

    Dec 12, 2002
    I've purchased one refurbished Mac and one refurbished iPhone, and have gotten refurbished warranty replacements for two more iPhones, and iPod, and another Mac over the years.

    My first refurbished purchase (a PowerBook G4) had the annoyance of having a bad optical drive (it failed about five hours in to use,) but that could have happened in a new system, too. It was replaced quickly enough.

    Other than that, I've had perfect devices when getting refurbished.
  6. funkyfresh macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2008
    highly recommended

    both of the mbp's own and a mba for my wife were purchased through the refurbished program directly from apple. my latest purchase was a rmbp and was supposed to have 8gb of ram and instead came with 16 gb installed. so that was a nice bonus.

    i've recommended the refurbished program to several people and have yet to hear of any issues.
  7. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    I've bought both new laptops and, more recently, a refurbished laptop and a refurbished iPad. As the refurbished models come with the exact same guarantees and warranties as the 'brand new' ones, and are somewhat cheaper, they are usually a very good deal. In any case, I would certainly recommend buying refurbished.
  8. Sue De Nimes macrumors 6502a

    Sue De Nimes

    Apr 10, 2012
    I bought a refurbished iMac. Not only was it 'as new' it also had upgrades over and above what I was charged for.
  9. MattA macrumors 6502


    May 15, 2006
    Orlando, FL
    I've had refurbished Apple products before. So far:

    1 x Powermac G5
    1 x iMac G5
    1 x 24" iMac
    1 x iPod Touch
    1 x 24" LED Cinema Display

    I haven't had a problem with any of them. They've all been rock solid.

    In the case of the G5, the 24" iMac, and the 24" cinema display, you couldn't tell the difference between them and a new one, save for the box. They even had that 'new product' smell. :D
  10. Larry-K macrumors 68000

    Jun 28, 2011
    Thanks for that link, I missed things a few times. I may pick up another MacPro if the New MacPro doesn't live up to my expectations.

    I've had nothing but good luck with Apple's refurbs, I almost feel like they're the only ones that Apple actually checks on the way out the door.
  11. anfield007 macrumors newbie

    Sep 24, 2013
    well obviously they check it otherwise how can they give you the same 1 year warranty as the new one?
  12. LizKat macrumors 68040


    Aug 5, 2004
    Catskill Mountains
    I've bought lots of Apple laptops for myself or family members, almost always refurbs. I had one show up with a fully charged battery, but it would not recharge. That was quite frustrating - got to play with it for like five hours before it had to be boxed up for a trip to Memphis and back. Outside of that, I have had very happy experience with my refurbs.

    One famliy member had some issues with a 15" G4 Powerbook refurb but she's bought other refurbs since, mostly iMacs I think, and no problem.

    On the minor cosmetic issues that Apple says may exist in refurbs, I have never noticed any, minor or otherwise. Everything showed up looking absolutely brand new.
  13. Larry-K macrumors 68000

    Jun 28, 2011
    Well, you might think it would be obvious they check all of the new ones (or at least have someone in China take a good look), but clearly lots of clunkers get through, providing reasonably good deals for people who aren't hung up on getting a new box.
  14. Crazy Badger macrumors 65816

    Crazy Badger

    Apr 1, 2008
    I bought a 2011 iMac in 2012 and other than the box it arrived in (plain white, no Apple branding) you wouldn't have been able to tell it was refurbished. The money saved meant I could install 32GB RAM and 512GB SSD :D

    Hasn't missed a beat in the last 18 months so very happy I went down the refurb route, and when checking the price on macs4cash it's probably only dropped in value by ~ £150
  15. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Oct 21, 2012
    Every refurb I've bought has been flawless. About 50% of new machines I've bought have had to be returned for one reason or another:

    rMBP - flickering screen.
    MBA - top case screw holes were too big, meaning no screws would stay in.

    The only downside to a refurb is you don't always get a white box. Upsides - my Mac Mini arrived with an unsuspected Fusion Drive and twice the RAM it was meant to.
  16. Miat macrumors 6502a

    Jul 13, 2012
  17. Metapraxis macrumors newbie

    Mar 12, 2011

    I think one of the nice things about the refurbs is that a lot of people get better spec than they paid for. No guarantee, but seems like there is a good chance.

    I recently ordered a 15" 2.3Ghz / 8GB / 256GB rMBP from the Australian Online Store, which cost me AUD 1,819 (against the current cost of a new 2.4GHz at AUD 2,499). I actually received a 2.6Ghz machine (so basically got a free CPU bump). The machine looks identical to new, with 2 charge cycles on the battery. And as I'm leaving Australia in a couple of days, I get my GST back, so the final cost will be AUD 1,650.

    For me, that was enough of a saving to justify not waiting for Haswell (and I'm plugged in most of the time, so battery life isn't a biggie).
  18. Drharrington macrumors member

    Jan 1, 2012
    Most of the time I buy refurbished directly from Apple.
    Zero issues and great deals.
  19. aham23 macrumors regular

    Oct 31, 2011
    Decided to take the plunge and go iMac after a lifetime of PC use. Refurb came Thursday. I have an apt with the the Genius Bar today to return it. Dead screen. It never flickers or shows signs of life. It boots up and voice prompts me to start setup, but I can't see anything. I'm not mad, yet, cause it happens. Otherwise it looks brand new.
  20. mward333 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 24, 2004
    I always had excellent luck with all refurbs I've bought. It is essentially like getting a new machine. Good luck!
  21. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    Guy buys a MacBook Pro, leaves the store, changes his mind 5 seconds later, returns it to the store and gets his money back. Maybe someone working in a store can confirm, but I think legally Apple cannot sell it as brand new anymore. So you can get that MacBook Pro 15% cheaper as "refurbished".
  22. Larry-K macrumors 68000

    Jun 28, 2011
    Wonder if they stick him for the restocking fee?

    Computers shouldn't be impulse buys, that's what candy bars are for.
  23. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    If the box wasn't opened by the customer (and computer not turned on of course) it is still new in box.
  24. RAPTORSKI macrumors regular


    Jan 24, 2013
    British Columbia
    Every refurbished product I've bought from Apple has been excellent, if I didn't tell you it was a refurb you wouldn't know it. Really enjoy paying less for the same thing that most others technically overpay for in the store. :)

    I probably should have bought my iPad refurbished also, damn. :D
  25. notjustjay macrumors 603


    Sep 19, 2003
    Canada, eh?
    A more likely scenario would be: guy buys a MacBook Pro, takes it home, opens it up, plays with it for a while, and changes his mind. Maybe he decides a Mac Mini or an iMac is more what he wants, or maybe his credit card bill arrives and he decides he wants a cheaper computer. Maybe he just doesn't like OS X. In any case he packs it up and returns it. Apple sells it as an open-box item or as a refurb unit, even though nothing is wrong with it.

    You can add me to the list of people who have bought refurb units with zero problems. The only difference is the plain brown box instead of the glossy white one. I would (and will) do it again.

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