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What Would Be The Best Macbook I Could Get For Under $600

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by Shakenbake158, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. Shakenbake158

    Shakenbake158 Notebook Consultant

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    Well I have been considering buying a Macbook, I love their looks, and I have about $600 to buy a used Macbook. I was looking at the 2006,2007,2008 models on Ebay for around $400-$450. What do you guys think?
     
  2. KCETech1

    KCETech1 Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    truthfully, I would not bother with models that old

    PPC Macs are no longer supported at all, Intel Macs with the Nvidia 8600GPU are ticking timb bombs, and if you can not get apple care ( 3 year maximum ) I would be extremly hesitant as repair costs are very high.

    I would say save and get a mid 09 or later model atleast.
     
  3. kingp1ng

    kingp1ng Notebook Evangelist

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    Probably not worth it. Is it refurbished? If it's just "used" it'll be like buying a car with no mileage left. Like KCETech1 said, "repair costs will be high." Just like repairing a car. All hardware breaks.

    Don't buy it just for the looks. There are plenty of budget PC's that copy the Mac design but offer the current hardware.
     
  4. Shakenbake158

    Shakenbake158 Notebook Consultant

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    I was hoping you guys would say that, but even if I can get one for $400?
     
  5. kornchild2002

    kornchild2002 Notebook Deity

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    Not even then. You would be better off spending the $600 on a Windows notebook or saving up at least $1000 for either the 11" MacBook Air (MBA) or 13" baseline MacBook Pro (MBP). Apple has never been about releasing budget notebooks and used models that are actually worth it still carry a high resale value. You would want something with at least a Core 2 Duo processor and I would not spend $400 on any used MacBook (the white plastic). Now, if you could find a used 15" 2009 MBP for $400, I say go for it so long as the unit is in good condition. Otherwise you need to go with a different brand or save up.
     
  6. formerglory

    formerglory Notebook Evangelist

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    The 8600M GPU models are ticking time bombs, but I've gotten one repaired out of the recall replacement timeframe. Apple will replace logic boards with the NVIDIA 8600M issue, even now.

    (Don't quote me on this being official policy, but my paperwork indicated that my replacement was under one of their recall programs, so I'm pretty sure they'll be replaced even now.)

    If you can find a white or black MacBook with either the Intel X3100 or NVIDIA 9400M graphics, go with it, that's my call.
     
  7. KCETech1

    KCETech1 Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    they seem to replace once but not a second time, from what I have been seeing here. I assume different repair centers may have different policies, I currently have 2 with the 8600's making good paperwieghts
     
  8. wlam888

    wlam888 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Keep watching CL, I picked up a clean unibody 15inch MBP for exactly $600.
     
  9. Shakenbake158

    Shakenbake158 Notebook Consultant

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    What about a Macbook Air C2D 1.6 2G model # - MB003LL/A
     
  10. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    Don't get a five-year-old laptop off eBay and actually try to rely on it to work well over a few years of ownership. Instead:

    [​IMG]

    Thinkpad Edge. Best build quality I've personally witnessed at the $600 price point (the E420 starts at $549), and a new Thinkpad Edge will probably be a lot more dependable in your ownership experience than a non-refurbished laptop (from ANY manufacturer) that's already 3-6 years old when you buy it. And I think it's quite handsome, in an understated way.
     
  11. doh123

    doh123 Without ME its just AWESO

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    wow.. thats one ugly machine... hopefully the specs are decent. But I agree about buying very old used machines. They usually end up being a waste of money.
     
  12. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    Meh, aesthetics are subjective, I like it well enough. Maybe it was just the shot. Here's a pic from Engadget's review of its predecessor, the 13" Edge:

    [​IMG]

    Lenovo ThinkPad Edge 13 review -- Engadget

    And the keyboard and build quality is really, really nice in person. By far the best at that price point I've found.

    The $549 Thinkpad Edge has:

    Intel Core i3-2310M Processor (2.10GHz, 3MB L3)
    Windows 7 Home Premium 64
    14.0" W HD (1366x768), AntiGlare
    Intel HD Graphics 3000
    6 GB PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM 1333MHz SODIMM Memory (2 DIMM)
    320 GB Hard Disk Drive, 7200rpm
    Multi Recorder Optical Drive (12.7mm)
    No webcam standard (a 720p webcam is a $30 option; make sure you get it)

    Find me a used MacBook that costs $589 and has hard drive, CPU, and ram anywhere near that, not to mention a webcam and a warranty.

    But if that's just plain too ugly to your eyes, there's always the new Gateway ID. I haven't read any reviews yet and can't comment on the build quality, but it's got very good specs for a $679 machine (ID49C14u | Model) and it's handsome:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  13. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    Or how about a Vaio E-Series? It starts at $549. Free upgrade to an i3 processor. And with Sony's "Fresh Start" option, you don't have to worry about the bloatware that many new, cheap PC machines have (though you need to do a configure-to-order to get Fresh Start--it's on the second page--and you need to select the $50 upgrade to Win 7 Professional). And in white, it might give the MacBook-esque aesthetic you're looking for with the benefits of buying a new machine with modern hardware.

    VAIO E Series PC | Sony | Sony Store USA

    Edit:

    [​IMG]
     
  14. formerglory

    formerglory Notebook Evangelist

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    Send them my way! I'll take 'em off your hands.
     
  15. Empty Eyes

    Empty Eyes Newbie

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    I agree with most of the posters here. A nice machine on Windows or Linux will be a better option. If you buy a used Macbook now, it will become dated very quickly. Apple is not about supporting older products for very long.
     
  16. directeuphorium

    directeuphorium Notebook Evangelist

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    Depends on what you're using your computer for. If you just want to surf the internet, read blogs, check facebook, run office, read e-mail, watch videos and upload photos an older Macbook would suffice.

    My wife has a 2006 (first intel MBP) that I am using right now to type on. It works well for her purposes but it's way underpowered for most of my needs.

    Of course this notebook was purchased for $0 as apple told the previous owner a new logic board was needed and $700 would be the cost to repair. It actually just needed the PRAM reset and a new circuit board that powers the backlight ($12)

    My wife has kicked it off her 4ft night stand on to a hardwood floor and while the case doesn't fit as tightly as it used to, IT'S STILL running strong everyday.

    With that said, I agree with everyone else that I wouldn't buy a used macbook when you can get a pretty good newer windows computer for about that price. I'm a big fan of ASUS products personally.

    But if you have to have a real mac go for nothing less than a C2D with 4GB RAM. Expect to wait awhile too because people think their 5 year old mac is worth a great deal of money. (it's really not, but people pay it)
     
  17. formerglory

    formerglory Notebook Evangelist

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    Agreed. On eBay, Macs go for higher than they should be sometimes. Check Craigslist, sometimes you can find a good deal.

    But, Core 2 Duo should be the cutoff minimum, since that is the minimum for Lion. Try to get one that can support 4GB, but you can squeak by with 2. I believe 2 is the hard minimum RAM requirement for Lion.
     
  18. _Cheesy_

    _Cheesy_ Notebook Hoarder

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    No offense but that notebook is so ugly compare to macbook by a mile:eek:
     
  19. Mitlov

    Mitlov Shiny

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    As the ancient Romans said, "de gustibus non est disputandum." Since aesthetics are subjective, we can't resolve whether a new E420 is a better-looking computer than a four-year-old MacBook. But I think we can objectively state that a new E420 is a better computer than a four-year-old MacBook.
     
  20. Bill Nye

    Bill Nye Know Nothing

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