Second-hand MacBooks Can Mean More Work Power for Every Penny
With solid spec sheets, swathes of design flair and the ease of use that comes with Mac OSX, it’s no wonder the MacBook Pro is one of the most highly sought after laptop lines on the market. But, even if it’s a little out of your price range to buy one brand-new, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out completely.
Buying a used MacBook Pro has plenty of upsides and not just saving yourself a bit of cash, so we’ve rounded up 10 of the top reasons why a used Mac can still be a reliable partner.
1. Get Yourself a Bargain
Buying a MacBook Pro second-hand means you’ll save one important thing, and that’s money! Apple’s premium laptops start from just a quid under £900, so hardly an impulse buy, yet picking one up from eBay means you get more for your money.
You might find an older model someone has upgraded with more RAM, a larger HDD or even an SSD that’ll give the machine a boost in the speed stakes, giving you more bang for your buck.
2. Specs Appeal
As the name suggests, Apple’s MacBook Pro is the Cupertino based brand’s professional line of portable computers, meaning they are packed with the best internals available.
You’ll at least bag yourself 4GB RAM, a 500GB HDD or 128GB SSD and a processor that was once the finest Intel had to offer. These machines are designed to run intensive applications like Photoshop, Final Cut Pro and can handle multiple tabs open in your browser. Basically, you’re getting a machine that was once the best you could get.
3. Upgrade it Yourself
Unlike the new, Retina-display-boasting MacBooks, older versions produced by Apple were much easier to tinker around with and upgrade yourself. This is a big bonus.
Basically, even if you pick up a fairly low specced model, you’ll be able a add RAM and maybe a new hard drive to give the machine a new lease of life. Buying your own internal components is also much cheaper than letting Apple add them for you on a new machine, as you can shop around for the best deals. You could even remove the CD drive and replace it with another HDD or SSD, something which just isn’t possible on a new MacBook Pro.
4. Apple's Software Upgrades
Apple is currently in a yearly release cycle for big, feature rich updates to its OSX operating system. For instance, last year we had Mavericks and just a few weeks ago Yosemite was made available for download.
While the new features that come with these updates is obviously a huge bonus, it’s even better that Apple makes them available completely for free, so your computer is always running the same operating system as the brand new models for sale in the stores.
The majority of MacBook Pro models that have been released since 2007 are completely compatible with Yosemite, so even if you pick up an older machine, it’ll still run the latest software.
5. You Get Some Gold Old Tech Too
Since the release of the MacBook Pro with Retina display, Apple only has one model of its premier laptop line that features a CD and DVD optical drive, and that’s a 13-inch model.
If you want something bigger, say a 15-incher, but don’t want to lose the ability to watch a DVD movie without buying an addition drive, your only option is to buy an older model.
6. Because (Screen) Size Matters
Another product that Apple has killed completely in recent years is the 17-inch MacBook Pro, the biggest screen laptop that it produced.
If you want to pick-up a brand new one, you only have two options 13-inch and 15-inch (or 11-inch if you plump with a MacBook Air), the only way to get 17-inches of action is to buy an older model. The 17-inch model itself is hardly portable, but it offers a lot of screen real estate and you can even find models with the much less reflective, anti-glare matte screen coating, as opposed to the glossy covering that covers all the displays these days.
7. Cheap MacBook Accessories
Whenever a new product is released, accessory manufacturers everywhere rush to be first out of the gate with new cases, covers and extra bits for the device. What does that leave? A load of old accessories for the last generation that need to sold off, that’s what.
Cases for older pieces of hardware are generally much cheaper and more likely to be discounted in sales than new ones. You’ll also be able to pick them up on eBay from people who have upgraded their machine and are getting rid of the now defunct case. Many listings infact come with included accessories; so keep an eye out for that.
8. Multiple Yearly Releases
Apple tends to update the MacBook Pro line at least once a year, though it’s not too surprising to see the range get a refresh twice in one year.
This is great for those looking to pick up a solid machine on the cheap, as the older models are discounted and those who update when a new model hits will be looking to rid themselves of the older machine. Useful tip - if you want the best value, buy a last-gen MacBook Pro just after the new model has been released.
9. The Classic Design
While Apple updates and refreshes the internal components of its MacBook Pro line every year, it keeps the same design for much longer. That means if you pick up a version from the last few years, it’ll have the same sleek, aluminium design that gets so much praise.
10. The Little Geniuses
Often lampooned, the Apple Store located Genius Bar does offer a lot of use, even if you’re buying an old MacBook Pro.
They’ll be able to help if problems arise, telling you best way to get over them and they’ll even bring you up to speed on new features if you’re new to Mac.