Would you buy this iBook G4?

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by gavinstubbs09, Jan 15, 2014.

  1. gavinstubbs09 macrumors 65816

    gavinstubbs09

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    Location:
    NorCal boonies ~~~by Reno sorta
    #1
    So I recently got thinking about doing some computer reselling, and the iBook G4 came to mind. They are cheap and still are excellent for a number of things (that being Spotify, Basic Web, Notes, etc). And what I was thinking of doing was getting a lot of 6 G4s and make 4 work with 2 being parts machines. I would need to get more ram, new power cords/batteries. I did all the math and it would be about $70 per machine to get it to 1GB of Ram (buy a lot of 18x PC2700 sticks) and a new 45w power cord and battery (these are 1.2GHz models BTW). They would all be running Leopard and include AirPort Extreme. Wouldn't make much money but could be a fun side project if I can make up the cost of my investment.

    Would these be hot sellers for $120 :confused:
     
  2. RedCroissant Suspended

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    #2
    I don't think they would be unless you happened to find a hotbed of PPC enthusiasts. $120 would only be for an upgraded 14" (in my opinion) and by that I mean max ram, AP extreme, larger HDD, and running Leopard.

    If you want to use the stock size HDD, then I think the price automatically drops to $100. If it's running Tiger, then I would drop it down to $80. I think the configuration that you would use would max out at $60 for the 14" and maybe $50 for the 12."

    I say this not as a pessimist, but as a current owner of the 14" 1.42Ghz iBook G4(that is starting to die), an owner of a 900MHz G3 (not dying yet), and a former owner of the 1.33GHz G4 as well.

    Let me know if you want to buy something from me to then resell. I have an ad in the Marketplace with some PPC stuff and I will be adding more stuff to that within a week.

    If I were you, I would try investing in Mac Mini G4s as a more profitable machine.
     
  3. tom vilsack macrumors 68000

    tom vilsack

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2010
    Location:
    ladner cdn
    #3
    Your profit margin is gonna be way to thin...I have bought and sold 40+ ibooks and powerbooks over the years,and noticed a real drop off the last couple years in what you can expect to make.

    $120 is simply over priced (at least in my market...van cdn)....my last couple buys this month were 12" ibook G4 120mhz,mint cond $40 (traded for new dell venue 7" tablet...retails for $150)....and a 14" ibook G3 800mhz,good cond $20 (still have)....both came with airport and power adapters....

    If you wanna make money selling macs,look to buy and sell macbook pro's (once you know the market you can make some good profits)
     
  4. tampasteve macrumors 6502

    #4
    I have been doing this exact thing for about a year....6-8 months ago you could get that. Now they sell for much less. In fact it seems that prices on all PPC Macs seem to be trending down.

    If you are going to do this then you cannot be spending the extra cash to upgrade the RAM, battery, etc. Sell with the battery as is, whether it works or not (but state so in the add), keep the RAM whatever it is, etc. Clean em up and fix them as much as you can to make them actually work then sell em'. But if you have to buy them for more than about $20 each and spend more than $10 each to fix them up you are cutting the margins way to thin.

    Expect 30-50% no payment on Ebay and 50% no shows from Craigslist (even if you confirm with the person).

    That said, the iBook's that I have fixed all seemed to have minor issues. Usually just reinstalling the OS or running disc repair fixes them, only a few had major issues with the HDD, screen, etc.

    You can make more money from fixing iMac G5/intel (white) and and PowerMac systems as there is more of a ready market for these desktop machines. The shipping is much more expensive, but the buyer pays that. Also they are easier to work in than the iBook's....they are a bit*h to open.
     
  5. Cox Orange, Jan 16, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2014

    Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #5
    I would part everything and sell as parts, if I were in your situation. The airport card, e.g., is compatible to a wide range of Macs including PowerMac G5s and iMac G5s.

    But I got to report more ;)

    What a coincidence. I bought a 12" 1,2GHz (2004) BTO (additional RAM, 80GB HDD from stock) model here on German Ebay.

    Actually I planned to have it for parts for my main ibook 1,33GHz 12" mid-2005. The seller stated he had put out the HDD and that it was defective and said it was the 1,33GHz model. Unfortunately it is not.
    Now, I thought what I will do with it, since there are very few parts I could keep. I did the math.

    Selling it?
    - bought for 22,-EUR
    - missing is a HDD, which will cost 10-15EUR for 40GB.
    - I bought a lot of 80 compatible Dual Layer Drives for 2,44EUR each. Which I could add as an extra. Since these Dual Layer Drives sell for 1,50-10,-EUR i should calculate it as a 5,-EUR loss.
    -------
    Prices for this specific model are around 40,- (sometimes 60,-).

    They have changed the fees on Ebay here and private sellers can now do "buy it now" without initial fee, so I could advertise it with Dual Layer Drive and I guess one should call it lucky, if I get 60,-EUR for it, maybe someone giving 70,-EUR. But then again I can't take 70,-EUR for a Mac, that I consider worth only 40,-EUR actually I would only buy it for 30,-EUR these days myself. (The 1,33GHz mid 2005 model sells for 65-100EUR btw.)


    SOooooo, if I part everything out and sell these, I can make pessimistically 40,-EUR, optimistically 80,-EUR. The prices do not help you much, but you can see why I think this

    + keyboard 10-35,-EUR (I do not know why people do spent 35 here)
    + display 10-17,-EUR
    + airport card 5-15,-EUR
    + Logicboard 12-30,-EUR
    + Combodrive 1,-EUR
    + case parts 1,-EUR each or alltogether for 1-5,-EUR
    + case fan 1-5,-EUR
    + DC-IN Board 5-7,-EUR
    (+ the DL-DVD-drive I save and can sell seperately for 5,-EUR and wouldn't have to buy a HDD, I do not want to put my spare HDD in it ;) )

    Giving that I have already parted it halfway, it would now be easier to sell the parts and maybe keep the display and DC-in board for me, also could use the 512MB RAM stick for my mothers ibook.


    -------------------------------
    Third way to go.

    I thought of using the mainboard and building a wooden box, were just that fits in, I could route the opt. Drive around and put it above it (with 5cm space in between). I could make the hard drive better accessable maybe integrate the trackpad on the box. (I could turn the keyboard 90° and put it on top, but that would be at the cost of the small formfactor)

    But then again, this already exists, I could easier buy a Mac Mini. that would have 256MB less, but the same ATI 9200, though the Mac Mini is not listed as having the mobility version on everymac.com.
    Though minis go for 40,-EUR (lucky buy) till 120,-EUR (saw this several times now) but they usually set around 80,-EUR.

    I could use it as a iMovie exporting station, let it run in the background for hours to complete, but at a low power consumption (already found out that my 2,3GHz G5 DC is faster, but uses more Watts, so that the difference to the ibook 1,33GHz is the equivalent of a 60W light bulb being on for 4minutes (that was I think for 25minutes for completion of the task). (I also could always reverse this, so that I can sell the parts).

    For testing 2,5" drives, I have the PowerMac G4 with adapters... so that is not an option.

    Play games, well with the graphics card Nexuiz for OS X Tiger is to demanding and OS 9 games in classic mode stutter because of the CPU (that is in combination of the 9550 in my 1,33GHz ibook, I wonder if the 3D acceleration capabilities of the 9200 would come into account here). So it is as useless as the graphics restricted mac mini.

    -----------------------------------------
    Another idea would be to cut out the piece were the HDD can be accessed and create an ibook with swap-able HDD.

    Or put it in an iMac G3 case and add a small TFT via the displayport-to-VGA port. But these small TFTs have become expensive...
     
  6. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #6
    You can save money on the RAM side, when you buy boxes of defective untested dump RAM in kg. They usually are pulled from defective machines and sorted out for recycling goods.
    I did this a while back and usually 90% work. You can keep the working ones and sell the defective and non-value stuff to a recycler that gets out the gold, silicium etc.
    Of course check for dump per-kg-prices, before.
     
  7. jrsx macrumors 65816

    jrsx

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2013
    Location:
    Tacoma, Washington
    #7
    Yes, iBooks are a very hard machine to take apart as was stated above. It took me about 45 minutes to get one apart the first time, but after taking them apart more and more, it only takes about 15-20 minutes.
     
  8. iameatingjam1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2013
    #8
    Personally, I would not spend $120 on that ibook, no.
     
  9. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #9
    I guess one looses the angst and being carefull over time :) Some screws sit very tight, but if you get one that has been opened once before it is usually a lot easier on the screw side of things...
     
  10. jrsx macrumors 65816

    jrsx

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    #10
    Word. I have also made the mistake of thinking I could take off the top case without instructions... :) Bad idea. Pulled the power connector on the motherboard. I tried to resolder it, but my gun was too big. I just picked up another G4 to mess around with instead.
     
  11. joplinG5, Jan 18, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2014

    joplinG5 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2014
    #11
    Certainly not on Ebay... but would be worth building up one or two and giving Craigslist a try.

    Now and then I buy $40 and $50 "junker" 6 to 8 year old laptops from pawn shops... fix the problems that are always OS related... and list them on Craigslist for around $100. It rarely takes more than 24 hours to sell one. I usually have multiple folks communicating with me and wanting them at the same time. If I price them above $100 folks will always try to "dicker" me down to $100... so $100 seems to be the "magic" number for a quick sale at least in this locale.

    For $100 folks could care less what brand it is or what specs it has. All they care about is if it's internet capable and has wireless. Usually my buyers are folks who just broke their laptop and need a cheap one "today" until they can save enough cash to buy a new one... or want something cheap for their kids to "bang" on so their good one doesn't get destroyed.

    I have RARELY met a Craigslist buyer that really understood what they were buying. Most just throw their money at me... grab the laptop... and go. OS version means nothing... HD size means nothing... RAM size means nothing. All they care about is if they can get on Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Always mention in your ads that your iBooks will connect to these sites because that's the "key" to your sales.
     
  12. Cox Orange macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2010
    #12
    I don't think it is a nice concept selling things to people that do not know what they are buying and that at a high price. (Like the MDD PowerMacs that sit in some shops and are priced half of a new iMac, because they look so futuristic, that shop owners think they find some dumbo to buy it and at home find out, that it can't install Lion).

    Also, if people want internet, they usually want to watch youtube and fidle with facebook, one all PowerPC-Macs are not good at and especially a 1,2GHz ibook.
     
  13. jrsx macrumors 65816

    jrsx

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    Nov 2, 2013
    Location:
    Tacoma, Washington
    #13
    To be completely honest, the highest price I would buy a 1.2 Ghz iBook G4, would be $70. I picked up a 1.33 Ghz iBook G4 off of eBay for $50, shipping and all. If you want to make closer to $120 on a PPC Mac, I would do G5 iMacs.
     
  14. joplinG5, Jan 19, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2014

    joplinG5 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2014
    #14
    I try my best to be honest and stick to the specs... but I'm not going to conduct a Windows workshop or lengthy customer needs assessment in the middle of some parking lot. In fact... most Craigslist folks don't want to wait around to discuss the item anyway. They usually get annoyed if you detain them trying to explain basic details.

    Out of the 50 or so laptops I've sold on Craigslist... I can only think of one buyer who took the time before the meeting to research the laptop via the net and was able to discuss it with me in detail at length. I was shocked and impressed at the same time.

    The iBook G4 will do Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter. May not be as easy as firing up Google Chrome and clicking the bookmarks... but it certainly can be done. It's not really my problem if they don't care enough to research all of the readily available info on the net to figure out how it's done.
     
  15. In-Correct macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    Location:
    DFW, TX USA
    #15
    They wouldn't be hot sellers. But they would sell ... eventually. There are people who still collect Vintage and Non Mainstream hardware. :D I like laptops. I would buy one but not at the moment.

    And then there is this: :)

    http://www.morphzone.info/modules/newbb_plus/viewforum.php?forum=38
     
  16. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Elkton, Maryland
    #16
    A top of the line G4 could maybe fetch that much, but that is with some decent specs going also. At $120 I would expect at least a 60 or 80 GB HD, and the max RAM. I would also expect an Apple AC adapter. For $60 or $80 I would probably be much more lenient when searching. Like another member stated, if you hunt for them, iBook G4s can be as little as $50.
     
  17. jrsx, Jan 20, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2014

    jrsx macrumors 65816

    jrsx

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    #17
    The thing is, the one I bought didn't actually have an OS installed. So, with the OS it would probably fetch about $65+ I'm guessing. But a lot of iBooks on eBay these days don't come with a charger, which is crazy. It looks like the average for an iBook G4 with Leopard installed and a charger is around $80, which really is a fair deal.
     
  18. macnerd93 macrumors 6502a

    macnerd93

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    Nov 28, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #18
    prices on all PowerPC Macs have gone way, way down. I remember in 2009 paying £95 for an eMac LOL and I thought that was cheap.

    By comparison...

    Last March I picked up an almost mint Dual Power Mac G5 1.8 Ghz for £49.99. A couple of years back you'd have been lucky to get a single processor model for £250-£300

    I bought an iMac G4 17'' for £29.99 back in September, again, a few years ago you'd have easily gotten about £150-£175 for one.

    Just bought a 15'' PowerBook G4 Al for £25.50 (admittedly it has a dodgy display) which will be replaced, but even as a spares and repair unit its incredibly cheap.
     
  19. gavinstubbs09 thread starter macrumors 65816

    gavinstubbs09

    Joined:
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    Location:
    NorCal boonies ~~~by Reno sorta
    #19
    Gah! The earlier C2D iMacs sounds like a good idea but I think I'd have a tough time even getting $150 for one with the keyboard/mouse and stuff.

    I've had my fair share of buying PPC macs (all cheaply lol) but I've never sold one and really made my money back. Never owned a iBook G4 though, that would be new. There have been 2 times I've sold a mac and made killer profit. These were both earlier last year, bought a 1.6GHz iMac G5 for $66 and sold it for $120. Not bad. The other one that I kinda felt bad about after the fact was a 800MHz iMac G4 that I got for $50 and sold for $150 (I figured I'd get beat down to like $100, and they still are trying to sell it for $150 to this day, lol good luck).
     
  20. RedCroissant Suspended

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    #20
    The other reason that I thought of the Mac Minis as a possible avenue for profits is not just the form factor, but also the way that it could be a great retro gaming box. I mentioned this in another thread at some point, but loading that up with Leopard and then also loading it up with a few emulators and advertising it that way would be awesome. After all, the fact that they're white makes them perfect pseudo-NES boxes. And if you can source less expensive Nintendo USB remotes, then you're golden.
     
  21. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #21
    Let's not forget that they make great machines for in a home theater.
     
  22. jrsx macrumors 65816

    jrsx

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    #22
    They do get rather hot, though....:eek:
     
  23. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #23
    Especially the G4s, but they do their purpose.
     
  24. jrsx macrumors 65816

    jrsx

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    #24
    Do G5s not get as hot? I had a G3 for a while, and it didn't get too hot, but it was slow.
     
  25. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #25
    G5s are extremely hot processors. In fact, in order to achieve high clock speeds, Apple had to implement liquid cooling! That being said, even air cooled models require powerful fans and thermal zones to keep it cool. G4s can get really hot depending on clock speed and heat sink. Just think about the good old Wind Tunnel G4s. :D
     

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