Do you see yourself looking wistfully at the screen and counting the zeros on the latest Apple price tag? You're not the only one if you're having trouble paying for the new iMac & # 39; s and MacBooks with super resolution. But there is a savior, and it comes in the form of refurbished products.
This is what you need to know when buying a refurbished Mac – through Apple or another retailer.
What does refurbished actually mean?
First, let's make things clear: Refurbished is not the same as being resold. Resold simply means that someone resells the same item, uses it often, with all the associated problems. Refurbished means that the Apple product in question was sent back to (ideally) a professional because of a minor problem or because it was no longer desired. Defective parts are replaced, the product receives a one-time check to make sure everything is shiny and working properly, and is then repacked to be resold.
Because refurbished Apple products cannot be sold on MSRP, they are usually sold at a discount, which means you save money while buying a product that is often as good as new .
Apple manages its own refurbished store complete with its own certified refurbished name, meaning trained professionals ensure that each device functions correctly before it is offered for sale. The store offers the highest quality, so you essentially get a machine that hardly differs from a new model. Many people consider it a direct discount option when shopping for a new Apple device ̵
However, one reservation is that it is unusual to find recently launched Apple products that have been refurbished, given that they are unlikely to have returned. Typically, products must be out for at least a few months before refurbished Mac deals come on the market, and these will be broken off quickly. The largest range of products is likely to be between one and two years old.
Buy from Apple
If you want to buy directly at the source, it is difficult to find Apple devices. Renovated part. Buying directly from the manufacturer is a great way when it comes to refurbished items because you know they have been professionally inspected, repaired, cleaned and repackaged by people with experience in that particular electronics. Apple even supports these products with the same warranty that you would find on a new Mac, and you can further insure your device with AppleCare. The following are some additional comments:
- Used and once defective models are available and Apple guarantees that all products pass the tests for finished goods. However, the discounts at the online store are a bit disappointing. The average discount percentage floats around 15 percent, which is good, but is not really true. Some discounts can go up to 25 percent, if you're lucky.
- It's not just about Macs: Macs and MacBooks are some of the most popular options, but Apple sells refurbished models of just about everything in the company's arsenal, including Apple watches and iPhones. The left-most menu of the website shows what is available and what is not, but keep in mind that the inventory can change quickly, especially for popular products.
- Refurbished articles become extremely popular when a new Apple product comes out. Of course, it takes a while for revised versions of new products to appear on digital shelves, but consumers immediately begin to wonder if they can get an older model for a cheaper price, which prompts them to look for refurbished products. In other words, availability is usually scarce and competitive immediately after a major release from Apple.
- The cheaper models are the most in demand. For example, IPads with WiFi only are hard to find, but those with mobile data options are more common, and so on.
- Free shipping and returns apply to all these products.
Choosing the Right Vendor  There are options outside the Apple Store if you are looking for a refurbished iPad or iMac. Many external suppliers – including eBay, Amazon and Best Buy – specialize in refurbishing and you can find them on the internet. These stores do not always offer products that have been refurbished by Apple itself, but they can offer used products that have been refurbished. You can also often find better discounts through an external retailer than through the Apple Store.
Trust is paramount here. Don't just type a search query in eBay and search for the best possible prices – that's a quick route to scams and disappointment. Instead, look for quality brands that offer well-reviewed remanufactured items. Some of the most common retailers are:
Other World Computing : OWC specializes in used computers and tends to avoid smaller Apple devices. The good news is that prices are generally lower than Apple's, and there is a two-week return policy. The bad news is that the products have not been inspected or certified by Apple.
Mac or All Trades : Mac or All Trades offers some of the best deals in the Mac world. Quality can sometimes be a problem, but there is a 90-day warranty and expedited shipping, which makes this a great alternative to the Apple Store. Keep in mind, however, that there is a lot of demand for the inventory, so the options are limited.
Amazon : Amazon is a great place to find online options that have been collected from various suppliers, including Apple R Ons and Open Electronics. Always look for a high user rating before considering buying, and keep in mind that many of the available models differ only slightly, so it may be difficult to find what you are looking for.
PowerMax : PowerMax is a Premier Partner with Apple for Macs, iPads and iPhones and offers a 120-day warranty for used Macs. The site is harder to navigate and use than something like the Apple Refurbished Store, so some patience is required.
Best Buy : Best Buy also offers a limited number of refurbished Macs through its own program. . They are often sold out, but if you are a Best Buy customer and can get loyalty points or other benefits of buying, it is definitely worth a look.
Signs of a good deal
Price is one of the most important factors of a good deal, but there are other signs of a smart buy. Whether you're looking at the Refurbished section of Apple's website or exploring other suppliers, this is what you should pay attention to:
- Warranties and Returns Policy : A warranty provides some protection if your refurbished Mac unexpectedly bite the dust after you get it, so you don't waste too much money. A good example of this is Apple & # 39; s one-year warranty for refurbished goods. Fortunately, other suppliers offer similar security lines.
- Testing : You want to buy a Mac from a company that offers product testing. Apple is the best here, but other suppliers also offer their own – if not certified – test procedures to ensure the highest quality.
- Practical research : This is often not possible when buying online, but if you search local dealers, make sure that you can examine and test the product yourself. If you do this, you can look for obvious issues before you purchase.
- Original materials : the original box, instructions and accessories are a great bonus. A reputable refurbished product should have this, because the almost new experience is part of what separates a refurbished model from its used counterpart.
Signs of a bad deal
If you decide to use lesser known parties on eBay, Amazon and other corners of the web, here are the signs that the alarm should sound in your head:
- No guarantees or guarantees : if a seller does not offer any form of protection or return policy, go back slowly. Likewise, if the warranty is extremely short, this suggests that the dealer does not trust that the products he sells are reliable. You throw the dice here, except that the dice are made of money.
- No photos & pictures : If someone does not post real photos of a product and is not a trusted seller, do not trust
- A model that is too old for you and Apple : Although you may be able to get an older product for less money, this does not mean that you should. Older products have the meaning of & # 39; refurbished & # 39; because they usually do not support the latest MacOS functions and come with aging components. If you are considering a so-called refurb that is more than three years old, ask if the battery has ever been replaced. You also need the page & # 39; Vintage and outdated products & # 39; Check with Apple to check if the device you want to buy is no longer supported by Apple.
- Refurbished goods that are not being refurbished : Sometimes a store says: refurbished & # 39; but it really means & # 39; uses & # 39 ;. This is common with smaller suppliers on Amazon and eBay. Go with a store that redecorates products and don't put too much faith in the naming.