Should I buy a used 2011 15" MBP?

andrewshowie

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 9, 2016
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I'm looking at the 2.3GHz i7 model on craigslist. Due to a minor screen crack, I was able to talk the seller down to $460. It has a high cycle count of 560 and the seller claims it has never been repaired or given him issues. The RAM is 8GB and the drive has been upgraded to a 1.5TB SSHD.

I've heard about the problems with these particular models. Is this too much of a risk or should I go for it?
 

squarebreathing

macrumors member
Feb 16, 2016
63
25
Baltimore
I think $460 is a bit of a gamble for this system. However the 1.5TB SSD is worth about $300!

1. Most of the system is close to 5 years old which is very old for a laptop for any manufacturer. While Apple Laptops do have a very good reputation for lasting for a very long time, a 5 year old laptop is still very old.

2. 560 is not a terribly high cycle count for a 5 year old computer, but you won't be able to replace the battery when it eventually needs service.

3. It has a screen crack which could have been a one-off slip or a product of not being handled with enough care.

4. The Ram is fine. A 1.5TB Solid State drive is a huge upgrade and itself it worth at least $300.

Because of the solid state drive, even if the computer fails - you still have a 1.5TB Solid State drive that is worth around $300 that you could sell or install on a new computer. This is the only reason t
 

andrewshowie

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 9, 2016
4
2
I think $460 is a bit of a gamble for this system. However the 1.5TB SSD is worth about $300!

1. Most of the system is close to 5 years old which is very old for a laptop for any manufacturer. While Apple Laptops do have a very good reputation for lasting for a very long time, a 5 year old laptop is still very old.

2. 560 is not a terribly high cycle count for a 5 year old computer, but you won't be able to replace the battery when it eventually needs service.

3. It has a screen crack which could have been a one-off slip or a product of not being handled with enough care.

4. The Ram is fine. A 1.5TB Solid State drive is a huge upgrade and itself it worth at least $300.

Because of the solid state drive, even if the computer fails - you still have a 1.5TB Solid State drive that is worth around $300 that you could sell or install on a new computer. This is the only reason t

Sorry--as a correction, it's a fusion drive--not an SSD--so a little less of a value. The thing I like is the fact that it has the i7 configuration but the issues you bring up worry me. Should I not be as worried about the history of this SKU considering it is still running 5 years later? Would $600 for a late 2012 base 13" retina (also on the table) be a better value?
 

andrewshowie

macrumors newbie
Original poster
May 9, 2016
4
2
I wouldn't buy a 2011 15" MBP for any price. I consider it a risk because the video card could fail.

Search MR or google, 'Radeongate'.

Thank you for your comment!
I have a related question: is Apple still repairing these things? Is there an endpoint to this? I know they won't if the screen is cracked, but just out of curiosity.


Also, squarebreathing: why wouldn't I be able to replace the battery?
 

MacInTO

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2005
1,140
177
Canada, eh!
Thank you for your comment!
I have a related question: is Apple still repairing these things? Is there an endpoint to this? I know they won't if the screen is cracked, but just out of curiosity.


Also, squarebreathing: why wouldn't I be able to replace the battery?
Yes, it's the end of 2016. If there is another issue that could have caused the problem then they still might deny the repair. A cracked screen is the example they present on the page with the info. Another could be liquid damage.

https://www.apple.com/ca/support/macbookpro-videoissues/

The machine is going for cheap for a reason.

ps. You can totally replace the battery in this machine yourself in under ten minutes.
 

squarebreathing

macrumors member
Feb 16, 2016
63
25
Baltimore
You CAN replace the battery, it just isn't super easy and things can go wrong. These machines are not created to allow for easy replacement of any parts. It's debatable whether or not to replace batteries on any macbook pro made after 2009. That's beside the point though - the fact it's a fusion drive makes this a pretty bad buy.

I would not buy this.
 
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Fancuku

macrumors 65816
Oct 8, 2015
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OP, you are a brave man for considering a 2011 with the AMD graphics.
I'd forget the 2011 model and look at 2012 and newer.
 
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duervo

macrumors 68020
Feb 5, 2011
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Thank you for your comment!
I have a related question: is Apple still repairing these things? Is there an endpoint to this? I know they won't if the screen is cracked, but just out of curiosity.


Also, squarebreathing: why wouldn't I be able to replace the battery?
The battery is simple to replace. Apple just moved it from an externally accessible battery, to one that requires you to take the bottom cover off to replace.

The 2012 Retina and newer models are the ones that are a huge pain to replace, because those batteries are actually glued in, rather than just using some small screws.
 

Samuelsan2001

macrumors 604
Oct 24, 2013
7,682
2,103
Alright everyone--thanks for your advice. I decided to go ahead and pass on this one. It seems like more risk than it's worth.
To be honest if you want a non retina 15 inch the only one worth buying is the 2012, after that the retina are best late 2013 onwards.