Looking for a bargain laptop? Check out open box deals at Best Buy

Discussion in 'Notebook and Tech Bargains' started by saturnotaku, Aug 1, 2019.

  1. saturnotaku

    saturnotaku Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Best Buy open box, where the store sells product demos and customer returns, has become a gold mine for deals, particularly on laptops. Selection can vary wildly by location and what's available through their online store, but I picked up a Lenovo Legion Y530 at my local store. It has the i7 8750H, 8 GB of RAM, GTX 1050 Ti, and a 1 TB hard drive. It didn't have the box or documentation but was physically in like-new condition. The store originally had it at about $775, it was subsequently marked down to $580, but at the register, it scanned at $550 so I couldn't pass it up. I got a matching 8 GB stick of RAM for $35 on Amazon and will swap over the SSD from the Razer Blade the Lenovo is replacing.

    The hot item as of this posting is the Mercury White Razer Blade 15 2019 with the 8750H and RTX 2060. BB is listing "excellent" condition models for about $1,600, which is a discount of $750 off the original MSRP.

    There are lots of others, I'm sure, so post your finds here.
     
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  2. NB_Neenja

    NB_Neenja Notebook Consultant

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    How do you even plan around buying open box laptops though? It seems completely happenstance to me.
     
  3. saturnotaku

    saturnotaku Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    The Best Buy website is very good about listing availability of open box items both in-store and for shipping. The stores typically have shelves and cases with all the products they have. The Lenovo I bought was sandwiched between two costlier laptops. Someone who was more casually browsing probably would have missed it, so there probably is some amount of luck involved.
     
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  4. 4W4K3

    4W4K3 Notebook Evangelist

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    I've had good experience with "refurbished" laptops and bad experience with "open-box". I'm not saying there are not good open-box deals, I am saying I have gotten a bad deal before.

    Open-box can mean purchased, used, returned within the return period in working condition, and re-sold due to missing peripherals and/or potential wear at a lower cost. What I am saying is, open-box does not mean the product has not left the store and been used already. Some might be demo units that just sat on the shelf in-store. Many are purchased, opened, used, and returned units with very little to no wear (ideally).

    In my particular case I purchased an open-box Aorus 15 X9 laptop that was $500 below retail. It came with all original packaging and peripherals. The only problem was a dead SSD (that's what the seller advertised/told me). No big deal, pop in a new SSD and I'm off to the races for less than $100. The laptop worked great!!! For a few days...then it had very erratic behavior. Temperatures were good, then bad, then good again. I disassembled the entire laptop to discover the first/previous owner had installed Liquid-Metal on the CPU and GPU and done a BAD job with little insulation and lots of spill-over. I immediately took pictures and contacted the seller, told them the laptop was having issues, and was much more tampered with than initially advertised. I am very lucky in that the seller let me return the laptop for a FULL refund as I was within the 30-day period.

    On the flip-side I've purchased a refurbished Acer laptop that ran great for years. It came in a plain cardboard box with just the AC charger and NOTHING else. I was skeptical at first. It was refurbished by Acer manufacturer, not a reseller, and also had a limited warranty which I thankfully never needed. It was about $300 off retail pricing. I sold that laptop to a friend who still uses it today.

    The big difference I believe is the refurbished units go through a process of quality control and testing back at the manufacturer or repair facility. The open-box units are simply warrantied by the reseller, and it's luck of the draw what you are getting. It's possible it just sat on the shelf as a display unit, it's possible it was purchased and used, etc. If there was any issue with the product that the consumer did not report back to the reseller on return, they may resell it with potential damage or wear to you. This is why there is usually a substantial discount. Be SURE there is some return policy or warranty to cover your purchase; even if you are getting hundreds of dollars off. In my case, the 30-day return policy saved me nearly $1,500 after receiving the damaged Aorus laptop.
     
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  5. NB_Neenja

    NB_Neenja Notebook Consultant

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    Wow can't believe some people. That sucks. The good news is I think that level of tampering is extremely rare.

    The only thing I'm worried about buying open box is PC components like CPU, GPU, and motherboard. I'd never buy those without a 30 day policy because people can destroy them or even intentionally swap a bad unit in.
     
  6. saturnotaku

    saturnotaku Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Which is essentially what I said in the first post.

    And what you get from Best Buy is a full 14-day return policy (extended to 30 or 45 days for high-tier Elite rewards members) that you can use to take back the laptop for any reason. In your case, it sounds like you bought from a private seller via fleBay, which has a similar guarantee. BB is more convenient if you live near a store because you can take anything back there, saving you the hassle of having to deal with online policies (waiting for eBay sellers to respond, printing shipping labels, etc). I've never had an issue returning stuff to Best Buy. Heck, I've needed to take back two brand new laptops because of defects - a Dell that was overheating like crazy and an Acer that wouldn't run on newer GPU drivers than what was included in the box. The Lenovo I just bought has been working great.
     
  7. yosv211

    yosv211 Notebook Consultant

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    I have found some good deals from best buy open box but I would usually resell them back on ebay. I would make a small 10-20% profit after fees. x
     
  8. saturnotaku

    saturnotaku Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    My recent experiment with a MacBook Pro was a failure so after returning it, I checked out the local Best Buy and found an open-box Asus ROG GU501GM with a Core i7 8750H, GTX 1060, 120 Hz screen, and a Thunderbolt 3 port. I'm guessing it was the store's display model as it wasn't in the best physical condition. Still, I figured it was worth a punt. It cleaned up reasonably well, though there is some sticker rash that likely will never come off. After a clean Windows install, it seems to be working just fine. Time will tell, but this is shaping up to be an absolute steal. Inclusive of a BB reward certificate, I paid just $556 plus tax, which is about 1/3 of the original MSRP when this laptop was new and current.
     
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