Should I be worried about this Ebay purchase?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Lewis Hollow, Sep 18, 2007.

  1. Lewis Hollow macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2007
    So, I just bought a new 17" MBP on Ebay (somewhat against my better judgment). The seller looked legit, but I'm always somewhat worried with Ebay purchases.

    Anyway, I just received the shipment tracking info, and it was shipped from China, not Georgia where the seller is located. This was not indicated anywhere on the original page. I then noticed another buyer had just left that seller negative feedback for shipping from China (he hadn't received the computer yet, though). I know that they're manufactured over there now, so it's not necessarily a bad sign, other than he wasn't completely forthcoming.

    So, should I be worried? If I get it and the serial # is legit, I don't see why I should be. If it's not legit I can claim fraud. Does anyone know if the misrepresentation of the shipping location is enough grounds for refusal / refund?

    Thanks for any insights.
  2. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    Doesn't sound right. Why would anyone be shipping from China?
  3. Sutekidane macrumors 6502a


    Jan 26, 2005
    Maybe the fact that all macs are made there has something to do with it.
  4. Veritas&Equitas macrumors 68000


    Oct 31, 2005
    Twin Cities, MN
    True, but it's not Apple that's shipping it to him. It's a 3rd party who presumably has the computer in his possession, I doubt he's a Mac reseller who simply orders them directly from Apple in China, taking a huge hit on the price just for the heck of it. If he's based in Georgia, and shipping from China, something doesn't seem right.

    To the OP, you have a link to your completed auction?
  5. Waragainstsleep macrumors regular

    Oct 15, 2003
    Well if he was planning to take the money and run, why bother giving you tracking details? Why send you anything at all?
    I don't imagine there is that much profit in making fake Macs. I expect you'd spot it in an instance if it is a fake. I've never seen a fake, and I repair Macs.
    I don't think it happens very often.
    It seems more likely to me that he has a way of scamming someone else. MBPs are indeed made in China, so it may be that he is buying to order from the Apple store and shipping direct to his buyers. Apple usually ship online orders from China (not sure if they are still using any if the other factories anymore) to your door.
    Maybe an enterprising student has bought the student discounts from his friends and colleagues, and is skimming a few bucks off the top. Or maybe he is claiming them as a business expense in some kind of tax dodge. I'm sure there are a number of ways if you know where to look. I'd wait to see what arrives and check the serial with Apple as you suggest. Keep us posted.
  6. Lau Guest

    Why not email the seller and ask why it's shipping from China, because you expected it to ship from Georgia. They may have a plausible explanation, or they may say something that rings alarm bells. Why not ask them? :)
  7. Stetwin macrumors 6502


    Jul 8, 2007
    England - Co-Durham
    Link us to the completed auction if you can and then people will be able to tell you if its dodgy or not
  8. Nabooly macrumors 6502a


    Aug 28, 2007
    Maybe its a reseller selling on ebay. At this point, you have nothing to be worried about.

    Can you link us to the aucion?
  9. suneohair macrumors 68020


    Aug 27, 2006
    Maybe he has some discounts with Apple. He sells it on eBay then orders it with said discount and it comes from China. Does it say who it is from on the tracking?
  10. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040


    Oct 12, 2005
    I bought a set of Audio Technica ATH-AD700 Headphones a few month ago online, the online store that I bought it from said they were situated in New York but to my surprise when I did get my Headphones they were delivered from Japan.

    It could be that you're getting the laptop directly from the manufacturer since the Macs are built in China.

    I hope you get you laptop soon.
  11. SFStateStudent macrumors 604


    Aug 28, 2007
    San Francisco California, USA
    I would be suspicious...

    only because the seller is in Georgia and it was being shipped from China!!! Also, you can check the stolen computer registry by entering the Serial Number at:

    That's if the seller has given you the serial number prior to payment! Be careful buying on eBay since ANYBODY can sell on their website and whatever recourse you might have to get your money back takes MONTHS to get it resolved. Even then, you may not get your money back. Internet Law Enforcement is "light years" behind those "scammers" and "opportunists" that want your payment in the form of "deposit the funds in my foreign bank account" and you'll receive your computer in (3) working days!
  12. johnfmaguire macrumors newbie

    Apr 25, 2005

    Have you transfered the money yet? I'd check immediately with your credit card company or Paypal to see what the story is on refunds, just in case the MacBook doesnt arrive. If the price you paid was well below the typical retail price, i wouldnt wait, check immediately with either ebay or your bank. There are dozens of (if not hundreds of) offers on MacBooks in auction sites, so called 'Police auctions', Buyandsell Magazine, and when I checked up a few the address suddenly changes from being on sale in Ireland to somewhere in China. Sometimes Dublin seems to shift to China for some odd reason.
  13. Lewis Hollow thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 13, 2007

    It turned out to be a scam. However, interestingly enough it wasn't technically me who was scammed, but the seller. It seems whatever distributor he was dealing with ripped him off. I've been tracking the package every day, and today it went from China to some strange foreign land where whatever it was will never be seen again.

    We've both made contact with PayPal and he assures me a refund is coming, which is what PP echoed as well, so I suppose it will turn out OK for me in the end. But, ugh. The thought of giving Apple $3k for a MBP is a bit tough to swallow (I am of the mind that they are overpriced), but I don't want to go through this hassle again.

    Thanks for all the feedback!
  14. macftwin macrumors newbie

    Sep 18, 2007
    Why don't you get a refurb 17" MBP for 2399 ... just about 2500 instead of over 3k... You won't be finding a "new" MBP online for any cheaper really... even on ebay, if it's not a scam.

    Or... just go with a nice 15inch. The 2.2ghz is only 1699 in the refurb store and has the LED backlights.. 2.4 is 2199...

    And you get the 1 year warrenty and won't be getting scammed...
  15. Keebler macrumors 68030

    Jun 20, 2005
    ditto on this one. refurb it all the way. macs aren't overpriced. far better value than a pc.
  16. johnfmaguire macrumors newbie

    Apr 25, 2005
    Refurbished stock

    I got a MacBook Pro, for my brother recently on the Apple store in Ireland for 1299.00 Euro instead of 1899.00. it was a slightly older model but well worth the saving. I should have bought one for myself as they arn't selling tham as cheaply now. By the way the refurbished ones seem completll new but reboxed in plain brown packaging. No marks or scrapes.
  17. synth3tik macrumors 68040


    Oct 11, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    It does not sound right. Does the tracking information let you know how long it is going to take. If you have issues you can contact ebay. If they did not say it was shipping from China they were being misleading. It could be ok, but I would contact the selling and see why it is shipping from China. They are a third party and would not have it shipped direct from the factory.
  18. TimJim macrumors 6502a

    May 15, 2007
  19. alljunks macrumors regular

    Apr 8, 2007
    anything coming from there....doesnt sound right!!
  20. MovieCutter macrumors 68040


    May 3, 2005
    Washington, DC

    I guess that's what you get for trying to cut corners...
  21. Italchef macrumors 6502

    Nov 3, 2003
    Maple, Ontario
    There's a permanent thread at the top of this category about fraudulent mac retailers. The bottom line of the thread is: there are no deals on Macs. Period. I always tell this to switchers when they're pricing a new machine.
  22. RedDragon870503 macrumors 6502


    Sep 6, 2006
    Ah... a drop-shipper... sells products on eBay and ships them from a third party after the auction ends... skimming whatever off the top he/she can.

    Easy way to make a couple bucks; if the supplier is legit. Which in this case they aren't.

    You will get your money back. He won't.

    Poor guy.
  23. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040


    Oct 12, 2005
    I"ve bought a refurbished iMac I'd highly recommend doing that.
  24. GavinTing macrumors 6502


    Sep 4, 2007
    Well, the sad refurb lottery.

    synth3tik didn't read the whole thread! :p

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