USED desktop - what to avoid

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Deadandgone?, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. Deadandgone? macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    London, England
    #1
    After 11 years, my G5 iMac appears to have died. Consequently I shall be in the market for a replacement. I DO NOT want a nearly new - can't afford it - and am looking for the best of the Intel generation of iMacs. I hate the aluminium, glass screen and would much prefer a white model but accept that buying one of these may be ill-advised, although I would welcome the experience of anyone who may have bought one recently.

    So people, what year/model should I definitely avoid?

    Thanks, good people.
     
  2. davidg4781 macrumors 68000

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    Alice, TX
    #2
    Just to throw this out... I purchased a used 2007 iMac. When I got it home it ran great, except for freezing randomly every hour or so. After I searched for this I found this was a pretty wide spread issue. I'd be pretty upset if I was working on something and lost all my work.

    So, stay away from this one, unless it was finally fixed. This was in 2012.
     
  3. sebastius macrumors newbie

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    Feb 22, 2015
    #3
    Don't get a 2009 or 2011 iMac (2009 for the GPU and cable issues, the 2011 for GPU issues). The 2010 is rock-solid with its GPU and should be the minimum system you are targeting. If you get a 2010, also get a 128 or 256gb SSD and build it in. Easy enough, just pull out the harddrive, short the temp-sensor-cable and stick the SSD in. It's a wonderfull machine and still quite capable!
     
  4. spatlese44 macrumors 6502

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    Milwaukee
    #4
    The late 2006 1.83 GHz model 5,2 does not have Bluetooth. Odd as all the other Intel white models do, even the early and mid 2006 models. That means no wireless keyboard, if that means anything to you. The white Intel iMacs are going very cheap around here. I actually have one I'm trying to sell. If you were nearby I'd try to sell it to you, but you're not. I might get $100, but I'm probably going to ask $80. To me, not having a supported OS was a big deal, so I bought a 2011 version. Those are going more like $500 - $700 range depending on year and model. I look at cost of ownership per year and if you are happy with the white model, you are certainly getting a better deal. At $700, I would buy a new one rather than a 2011. I paid $450 and felt very lucky.
     
  5. MisterKeeks macrumors 68000

    MisterKeeks

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    #5
    Unfortunately, I'd recommend against the white Intel iMacs, they have huge GPU issues.
     
  6. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    #6
    Have you considered getting a Mac Mini? Maybe you should, maybe even a new one.
     
  7. BornAgainMac macrumors 603

    BornAgainMac

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    #7
    Get a working white Intel iMac but don't pay anything over 65 pounds for it. Always use time machine. Don't game on it. If it fails, it fails but if you keep it running cool, it should last a bit.
     
  8. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #8
  9. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

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    Oct 24, 2013
    #9
    Just buy a mac mini any one from 2010 onwards will be a massive boost over your G5.

    If you really want an imac then the 2010 is probably your best bet.

    Those old white ones are becoming collectors items and are now priced accordingly.
     
  10. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #10
    I haven't considered a Mac mini and maybe I am being snobbish, but the idea just does not appeal.
     
  11. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

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    Oct 24, 2013
    #11
    Yep thats plain snobbery, they are brilliant little machines, small, quiet, unobtrusive with great connectivity and brilliant energy efficiency. You already have screens and a mouse and keyboard, they are your cheapest easiest option.
     
  12. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #12
    I don't understand. How can I connect a Mac mini to a screen that won't power up?
     
  13. Micky Do, Aug 5, 2015
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2015

    Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    #13
    Do you have a TV with an HDMI port? Every Mac mini since the 2010 update has had HDMI connectivity, so you are good to go with a TV.

    With an appropriate adaptor you can use a Mac Mini with just about any monitor, old or new.

    Same with other peripherals. Any USB mouse and keyboard, or wireless; whatever you have available.

    The latest Mini kicks in at £399 for the base model….. which folks scoffed at when it came out, but quite a few have come to find it ok for basic use and a bit more. The mid range model is £569.

    You can poke a Mac Mini away and nobody need know you have one. Or you can disconnect it in a minute to take with you should the need arise. I sometimes take mine to work in a back pack, and connect it to a LCD projector using a VGA adaptor.

    All in all, highly versatile, and all the computer many, if not most people need.
     
  14. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #14
    Ah, thanks for the clarification. I have flat screen TV and I think it has a HDMI port. However, my tv is on a stand with hard disc recorder and dvds stashed underneath.
     
  15. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

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    Oct 24, 2013
    #15
    and a mac mini is 8 inches by 8 inches and 2 inches tall I'm sure you can fit it in somewhere, I think you can even get little shelves that stash them on the back of the TV.

    Yep you can. Here we are

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...ac+mini+tv+mount&rh=i:aps,k:mac+mini+tv+mount
     
  16. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #16
  17. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #17
    Okay I'm back with a possibly stupid thought. I have now seen a G5, iMac 8,1 (model No A1076) in my local computer store for GBP170. It's nice and clean on the outside and fires up readily. Would it be madness to buy this?
     
  18. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    #18
    Not total madness, but like your G5 model that just died, it is now obsolete technology, and could also be nearing the end of its useful days.

    Things have moved on a bit since then, and there are benefits to be had from something a bit more up to date. It could be time to move on. When the power supply and HDD failed in my original 2005 G4 Mac Mini, I figured it was an opportune moment, and more cost effective, to replace it with the current tech….. Even for my humble requirements, it was a good decision.

    That being said, a friend's 13 year-old G4 laptop still soldiers on, performing adequately for his day to day needs.
     
  19. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

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    Oct 24, 2013
    #19
    Yes you would it's pre intel and none of the modern OS's are supported the RAM amount is pitiful and the graphics are pathetic you would be better off with an ipad.
     
  20. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #20
    Point taken, but not everything is about up to the minute this, that or the other, and whizz bang graphics isn't necessary for my modest use. I don't need an over specified machine for a bit of browsing/emailing/general use. I don't like the compromise of a laptop and what is the point of these 'tablets'?
     
  21. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

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    #21
    Well a second hand ipad would cost very little and do everything you want to do with ease (far more ease and faster than most desktops more than 5 years old) so they are pretty much perfect for your use case, add in an apple TV (also very cheap second hand) and you can play movies etc on your TV.

    Actually everything is about up to date specs the more up to date the longer they will last the longer your apps and OS will be supported the better the life of your machine and online safety. At the moment you really should be aiming for USB 3 and AC wifi and either thunderbolt or mini DP 1.2 or HDMI, not to mention 4GB of RAM and GPU's capable of 4K, for support of future standard equipment, routers, external hard drives, 4K screens and TV's.

    Of course go buy what you like, but you came here to ask for our advice and this is my advice buy carefully and up to date as possible and you may get another 10 years out of your next mac at remarkably good price.
     
  22. Deadandgone? thread starter macrumors member

    Deadandgone?

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    #22
    In the end I won a bid for a 20" white Intel model on ebay. I got it for GBP114.50 (including postage) and it should arrive on Friday.

    This was really the only option available to me given my finances and lack of technical skills to dive in under the cover and replace components, which by the way, are very expensive here in the UK anyway.

    My G5 lasted 11 years, so who's to say how much life I will get from this replacement.

    Thanks everyone for your advice and warnings, but the decision on what to buy was mine.
     

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