Repair Macbook pro touch bar or purchase new iMac??

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by rpinnell, Jan 4, 2018.

  1. rpinnell macrumors newbie

    Jan 4, 2018
    Hi all,
    I wanted to pick some peoples brains on what I should do about a 2016 macbook pro that had recent water damage. I just took it into the apple store to see what the repair cost would be and they quoted me 1475 plus tax to basically send it off and have an entire new computer replaced/refurbished. The specs on my computer that I got in 2016 are:

    15 inch Macbook pro with touchbar
    2.7GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
    • 16GB 2133MHz memory
    • Radeon Pro 460 with 4GB memory
    • 1TB PCIe-based SSD

    Again they quoted me 1475 plus tax to have this repaired. They offer a 90 day hardware warranty on this but otherwise thats it. My data is basically lost either way on it (although I have most data backed up minus a few months)

    My other option would be to scrap getting it repaired and just buy a new Mac. I have come into a situation where I don't necessarily need a laptop anymore because I now have a work laptop that I can use for portability when I need to. My thought would be to buying a 27 inch iMac. Pricing that out it is

    27 inch iMac
    • 3.4GHz quad-core 7th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 3.8GHz
    • 16GB 2400MHz DDR4
    • 1TB Fusion Drive
    • Radeon Pro 570 with 4GB video memory
    The total cost of this computer is 1879 plus tax. The benefit of this is that I would have the warranty on a brand new computer and not a 90 day warranty on a basically refurbished computer from apple. Any thoughts on what anyone else would do would be appreciated.
  2. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    The only problem area in the iMac you spec is the 1 Tb Fusion drive. The 1 Tb Fusions have a fairly small SSD side, and while it's perfectly adequate for web browsing and ordinary document editing and such, it's not going to do well with a lot of other usages. (Opening a large photo library is just one example often cited, using virtual machines is another, and there are plenty more.) The usual recommendation is to get at least a 2 Tb Fusion if you need the space and need to save money; or, if you can fit your stuff on it, a 256 or 512 Gb SSD; or, if cost is no object, the larger SSD sizes.

    I didn't price the storage upgrade, but if you can swallow it, I'd probably go for the iMac. Bigger screen, faster overall, better warranty coverage.

    edited to add: before you buy, I suggest you open up your macbook pro, wipe off any crud you see, and stand it in front of a fan for 3 or 4 days, moving it around occasionally. It's probably toast, but you never know. I revived a 2009 MBP from a red wine dousing that way (that one also needed a very careful water rinse, but it had a removable battery which helped.)
  3. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    How much can you sell the damaged MBP for? I ask because the money you recover from selling in it as-is condition combined with the $1500 for repairs could be enough to either A) buy another MBP of essentially the same tier with a full warranty and option for AC+, or B) buy the iMac. Presumably, how much you can recover selling the unit will affect the justification for one decision over the other. Provided the screen was not damaged and is in good condition, believe me when I say that your system still carries a substantial value when considering that is has liquid damage.

    Alternatively, there are some 3rd party repair places that promise repairs to liquid damaged MBPs for a set price...obviously, the quality of the repairs are often unknown. But some Users have done these "we get it working for $X" repair services, and then sold the computer in then working condition (with a disclosure explaining the liquid damage and the repair.)

    I agree with kschendel regarding the Fusion Drive. Depending on your usage, it may be adequate, or it may be totally unacceptable.

    Could you tell us a little bit about how you are using the system and what you are storing on the local disk?
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    1,475 ???

    Not worth fixing.

    Get an iMac.
    BUT... spend a little more for a "straight" SSD.
    256gb SSD adds $100
    512gb SSD adds $300

    Worth it, in my opinion.
  5. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I would definitely not sink that much money into the repair. Put those funds towards the iMac that you mentioned, or even buying another laptop. You can find used models, refurbs and NIB, so I'd not throw that much money into a repair.
  6. Plett macrumors member


    Feb 16, 2016
    I would make the repair you have a $3k machine that is amazing. If you don't you are basically throwing away $1500 seems like a no brainer to me, the repaired MBP will be like new, I can't see a downside. I wouldn't worry about "resale" focus on use. Break down the cost over time. Regarding not needing a laptop, while that is true today situations always change. Next year might be different, and you find yourself with an iMac and buying another 3k MBP. Fix it.
  7. MacGizmo macrumors 65816


    Apr 27, 2003
    Your math argument doesn't hold water. You're advising him to spend $1,500 to avoid losing less than $400 by purchasing an iMac. Either way he's spending money, so he can spend less than $400 for a new iMac, or $1,500 for a referb MBPro.

    Regarding your advice on depending on a "work laptop" for personal use, I agree completely. Things like that change, and they tend to happen at inopportune times.

    Of course my math argument is symantics... I agree with your overall advice. If he can afford it, the better long-term solution is to fix it if he can afford it so he doesn't need a laptop later and be stuck with the iMac.
  8. Plett macrumors member


    Feb 16, 2016
    I must have missed something. the iMac is $1,879. how is he getting a $400 iMac? From the OP post it was a choice of $1475 or $1879.
  9. MacGizmo macrumors 65816


    Apr 27, 2003
    Because the difference between the two is $400 – so if he's going to spend $1475 either way, and $400 more gets him the iMac, then he is essentially spending $400 for an iMac, with the added benefit of it being brand new.
  10. Plett macrumors member


    Feb 16, 2016
    I see your logic but disagree with the argument.
  11. vkd macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2012
    When I see these comments, which are far to frequent for my liking, I always remember who invented Fusion Drive technology. It was Apple. So, I logically think, would the inventors of this technology really be so stupid as to market products that are crippled by it? Again, the logical answer is, no, they would not. Then I pass my thoughts over the relative positions of the in-house Apple employee inventors and the laymen who comment and as it turns out, 100% of the time, I find the Apple inventors and thus their superior knowledge win the argument and I discard the layman comment as invalid.
  12. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    I don't want to turn this thread into a fusion drive thread, as we have plenty of those, so I'll try to keep this short. I'm not saying the 1 Tb fusion is crippled; it's perfectly adequate for a lot of usages. It's an inexpensive way to get 1 Tb of storage, as SSD's at that level are either too expensive or are a lot slower than the SSD side of the 1 Tb fusion.

    The biggest problem with the Fusion in general and the 1 Tb version in particular is unpredictability. Any cache will have unpredictable response times depending on cache hits, and the Fusion is no exception. Given the fairly large disparity in speed between the SSD side and the HD side, response times can vary wildly. The small front-end SSD on the 1 Tb fusion aggravates the situation.

    Most people for whom the 1 Tb fusion is appropriate aren't asking questions on this forum about what they should buy. The OP in particular had a 1 Tb SSD in his MBP, and that particular SSD is *extremely* fast. Going from that storage to a 1 Tb fusion is a recipe for dissatisfaction, IMO.

    BTW, while I don't pretend to know the details of how the Fusion drive caches, I'm hardly a stranger to these things; I used and tuned Solaris's cachefs a decade ago, and the Fusion is just another cachefs in a different context.
  13. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Mar 21, 2011
    Australia, Perth
    If TouchBar is you main thing you use, then i wouldn't buy a new mac just because its about the same price, unless u don't like your current Mac..

    Since Touchbar is not a requirement to use anything, I wouldn't worry about it.... It just more of a convenience, and paying that much to satisfy a convenience is allot of money 'just because.'

    You could get it done over time if it really mattered,, there is no rush since the Mac is still usable...Touch bar or no Touchbar.
  14. vkd macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2012
    Delayed write etc. are part of the tech so no problem with cache hits or response times. Just trust the tech. I and millions of others are using Fusion Drives on iMacs for years now with no problems and we are satisfied. I speak for others because we don't see them complaining, the only ones who complain are those who don't actually use FDs.
  15. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Dec 9, 2014
    Words fail me, so I'll stop here and refer anyone who is interested in the subject to any of the other threads discussing the topic. (I will also note that "vkd" is using a front-side SSD that's about the same size as Apple's 2 Tb Fusion, significantly larger than the stock 1 Tb fusion front-side which is 28 or 32 Gb depending on vintage.)
  16. Sedulous macrumors 68020


    Dec 10, 2002
    Unauthorized repair such as Rossmann Group is $300.
  17. vkd macrumors 6502a


    Sep 10, 2012
    I am quite willing to install a 28 or 32 Gb SSD in place of the one presently in there, if someone is willing to provide it. Bottom line is, I trust the calculations made by the inventors, as I said above more elaborately.
  18. oldtime macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2007
    I wouldn't shell out that much for repairs. Either find a 3rd party repair shop with a good rep or get that iMac with an SSD.
  19. ocnitsa macrumors 6502

    Jan 24, 2011
    I agree with those that wouldn't repair. Sell it on ebay as is listed as having water damage and fully describe the lack of functionality. I bet you'll get at least 400 dollars for it. Use that money and what you would have budgeted anyway for the new or refurb iMac or Macbook Pro. You'll get a new warranty that protects your system. Like others have stated, I'd do some research on fusion drives related to your usage. As a gamer, for example, I'd prefer a vanilla SSD.

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