Refurbished rMBP - SSD or Battery concerns?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jsklar, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. jsklar macrumors member

    Jan 7, 2005
    Hi all,

    I'm about to replace my mid-2010 15" MBP and am looking at getting the 15" rMBP as my work machine. One of the main problems I'm having with my current MBP is that the battery is only at 81% capacity (5593/6900mAh) after 625 charge cycles over 31 months of use. I thought these non-user replaceable batteries were supposed to last 1000 cycles before reaching 80%...but anyway, there are other reasons I need a new work laptop.

    The souped up 15" rMBP with 768gb SSD and 16gb RAM is $3189 as a refurb from Apple, or $3499 at MicroCenter, new ($3749 from Apple directly I believe).

    If I went with the refurb, should I have any concerns with the SSD or battery since they both wear over time?

    I'm more worried about the SSD than the battery since even at $199, getting the battery replaced by Apple a year from now or less is still cheaper than the difference between refurb and new. The 768GB SSD on the other hand would be a bit more expensive.

  2. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Apple replaces the batteries on refurb units if there are more than a certain number of cycles. I bought a refurb once that had a brand new battery. As for the SSD it takes several years for them to wear out from normal use.
  3. xShane macrumors 6502a


    Nov 2, 2012
    United States
    Refurbs are usually great, and arguably better than brand new as they have to pass inspection standards (again) and are closely examined. Many parts are actually replaced and brand-new. Not to mention the fact that you can easily save a few hundred USD.
  4. 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.
  5. akdj macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2008
    I wouldn't worry about either. Sounds like you've had excellent performance from your 2010 unit...and if it had/has AppleCare and you do need it replaced, they'll take care of it free of charge. You may also cycle it to re-calibrate the battery to see if it's health improves a bit.

    I own a pair of rMBPs myself and couldn't be happier....easily the best computer I've ever purchased in 25 years. It's Incredible!!

    Also...there are other places than Apple to pick up genuine Apple Care protection packages. I use B&H and saved a hundred bucks and some change (I believe when I bought it was $244 for rMBP 15" coverage). You can also check Amazon--but be wary of eBay, just use common sense if you go that direction. If you're spending $3k+, it's easily justifiable and will provide peace of mind for the next three years. With Apple, even a refurb comes with the full one year warranty as GGJ pointed out.

    Good Luck

  6. swerve147 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 12, 2013
    2 recently purchased Apple refurbs:

    #1 had 3 battery cycles on it out of the box.
    #2 had 2 battery cycles on it.

    And I'm assuming they had these cycles on there for testing purposes.

    Sounds like I'm going the B&H route. Thanks for the tip J.
  7. villagechris macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2013
    Refurbished rMBP returned

    A long time PC user, I finally decided the time was right to take a bite of the forbidden fruit and purchase a Retina Macbook Pro. I had always heard good things of Apple's refurbished products, so I took advantage of saving $300+ and purchased a refurbished 15.4" 8GB 512GB SSD rMBP from

    Shipping from Concord, Ontario, it took only 3 days to arrive instead of the estimated 5-6 days.

    When I booted up the Macbook last night I was amazed with the display and quite satisfied with my purchase.

    That changed after about 10 minutes when a crackling and popcorn-like sound began when the computer was downloading and installing software. With a SSD I expected whisper-quiet operation and this sound was what I had come to expect from a PC harddrive processing a resource-intensive task.

    Needless to say, I phoned Apple and they gave me a shipping label to return the product no questions asked. Although they didn't ask any questions, I expressed my dissatisfaction with their product.

    Now, some of you might say you get what you pay for, but I'd respectfully disagree.

    Of course, Apple did suggest I could reorder the product again once the return went though. They couldn't do a straight exchange because they were unable to guarantee a replacement product would be available (because it was a refurb).

    Now, I'm wondering if I should spend the extra $300-400 and purchase brand new. But, if the problem existed once, could it occur again in the future - well beyond the 14 day return or 1 year warranty?

    Did you end up purchasing a refurbished product? Maybe I got a lemon, but don't know if I should try again. Will I get another lemon?

    Should I instead buy a cMBP 15" instead and forget the joy of a retina display?

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