Tips on buying a Secondhand MacBook Pro.

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Unica, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. Unica macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #1
    Hi, I came across here looking out for tips to buy a secondhand MacBook Pro.
    I know a few thing to look out for, but some feedback from current users of MacBook Pros would be much appreciated.

    I am getting this system from a reliable source and its been very lightly used, however I would still like to double check stuff when I go to pick it up, since I am going to spend to buy it.

    Here are the specs:
    1. The system is only about 4 months old. Still has 8 months warrenty left.
    2. Intel Core 2 Duo
    3. 2.16 Ghz processor
    4. 2 Gb Memory
    5. 128 Mb ATI graphics
    6. 120 Gb Hard Disk
    7. 4 Mb L2 Cche per processor
    8. 667 Mhz Bus speed

    Any suggestions/tips most appreciated.
    Thanx everyone.
     
  2. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #2
    Here is a list of things to check I compiled.

    Here is a list of things to check I compiled. Anything else I should look out for?

    01. Check casing for scratches/dents/etc.
    02. Check screen for:
    .....a) flicker/brightness
    .....b) dead pixels
    .....c) patches
    03. Test if system runs from the battery.
    04. Test speakers for sound by playing music
    05. Test keyboard - each key
    06. Test sound of the laptop
    07. Play CD & DVD in the CD/DVD drive
    08. Check usb ports by connecting a usb device
    09. Check closing latch and the lid.
    10. Run a few applications and see if its ok.
     
  3. Markleshark macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #3
    You look to have pretty much everything sorted there.

    Only one I can think you'd maybe want to try is putting the machines serial number into here (Right hand side of the page) and get any extra information from there.
     
  4. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #4
    glad to know that :) but is there anything else I should look out for?

    This is going to be my 'FIRST' personal (new) Mac laptop. I use Macs at work but they don't count as mine ;)

    I had used a secondhand Powerbook for about 6 months. That system was about 3 years old already when I purchased it. And then I sold it to get this macbook pro when I saw the deal. So this is an almost brand new system, only I am worried ... any of the 2 can happen

    1. the system can start having problems and make my life a mess (like a friend of mine experienced when he purchased a brand new system)
    2. the system can be a real gem and provide me with atleast 6 years of faithful service, if I take good care of it.

    As this is a MacBook Pro and well still kinda new, i just want to be sure I don't miss out on anything obvious to check.
     
  5. Markleshark macrumors 603

    Markleshark

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Location:
    Carlisle, Up Norf!
    #5
    Well I can't think of anything more. Maybe someone else has more ideas.

    Really, all you have to worry about is the same as if you buy anything new or used. There is always a small chance it could break, but its slim, and as I say, its a worry with anything be it new or used. You have warranty left, so I see no problems.
     
  6. daneoni macrumors G4

    daneoni

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #6
    What has been said above should cover the basics.

    Also check if the iSight cam is working, is the magsafe adapter is working and does it look like its falling apart?. Also is the serial number intact under the battery case and does it pass a quick hardware test.

    Consider some of those
     
  7. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #7
    Why should the serial number be intact under the batterycase? I didn't understand... is it important? what should I look for exactly... if its intact or not intact?

    Also how can I do a quick hardware test? sorry but I am a bit rusty on the hardware and technical aspect of Macs.
     
  8. akam2 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    #8
    Just make sure they didnt scratch off the serial number, i dont know if its located anywhere else but without a serial number its out of warranty.

    But seing how you said its from a reliable source I doubt it is stolen.
     
  9. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #9
    thanx :)
    no I am sure its not stolen, they have the original purchase receipt, box and all.

    How can I do the hardware test? Is it time consuming?
     
  10. jczubach macrumors 6502

    jczubach

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Location:
    northwest
    #10
    You could also check the battery health, and make sure they provide the original install disks, which can be a pain. There seems to have been quite a few people out there who have purchased their macs without:eek:
     
  11. daneoni macrumors G4

    daneoni

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #11
    A hardware test can be carried out by inserting restore disk 1 into the computer and holding down the D key whilst the computer restart.

    The quick version (unchecking the Extended test checkbox) of the test doesn't take much time
     
  12. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #12
    Hi jczubach, I was told I would get everything as it was when purchased from the store, so the original install/recovery disks should be there. However I shall check to make sure its not missed .
    Also is there any particular way I can check the battery health?
    Thanx :)
     
  13. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #13
    hi daneoni, thanx :). I do hope its not time consuming and I assume I shall be able to figure the general condition of the system if I run it, right? Thanx again.
     
  14. Unica thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2007
    #14
    LCD Test

    I just found the LCD Test application (to test LCD on Macs) while searching through these forums. I am posting the link here, incase someone in future come around to this thread looking for tips on buying a secondhand system.

    http://www.macupdate.com/info.php/id/15119

    I think its real cool and useful to check out the condition of the screen.:)
     
  15. Nishanth macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #15
    Confused:confused:

    I am new to this forum.I have bought a macbookpro.This one had only windows in it ,the machd was not able to boot .I recently firewired it to an i mac and wiped of everything (iguess).Now i dont know how to install mac os in it..I have the cds for Mac os10.3 .But i dont know why i cant install the os in the macbook pro..Any guesses and suggestion..I am new to mac. and i am totally confused .Please help me
     
  16. daneoni macrumors G4

    daneoni

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #16
    MacBook Pros won't install anything other than OS 10.4.4 and above. 10.3 is panther which is a PowerPC only OS.

    You will have to obtain either the retail version or MBP restore disks containing Mac OS X Tiger 10.4.4 or above for your particular model. You might luck out and find either on ebay.

    Other option would be to head to an Apple Store and ask them to give you restore disks for you model of MBP....you might have to pay a small fee though.
     
  17. daneoni macrumors G4

    daneoni

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #17
    Yeah it will tell you if the machine's hardware passed or failed the test
     

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