How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

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Maverick3320
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How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Maverick3320 »

My wife has an apple laptop that has to be like 10 years old. She's constantly complaining about it but is too frugal to upgrade.

Me, being the great husband, have decided to get her a new Macbook Air for Christmas. It looks like they start around $1000, which is way more than I usually spend for Christmas, but I've moved past that.

Other than the Apple store, is there a better (read: cheaper) place to buy a Macbook? Is there an older, similar version that might be a better value? Do they ever go on sale? As a PC/Android guy I'm not terribly familiar with the Apple ecosystem.
5280Tim
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by 5280Tim »

B&H Photo Video. They have good prices (usually have an air on sale) and ship free. If you use their credit card, they will give you a statement credit for the sales tax. I figured they saved me a little over $200 on my wife’s MBAir we bought earlier this year.
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/buy/macbook-air/ci/49100
randomguy
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by randomguy »

Amazon and bestbuy regularly run 100-150 dollar off sales. Maybe get an extra 50 bucks on black friday. Other companies tend to match. The current model is a year old now. Nobody expects a replacement before christmas but it seems likely in the next 6 months. You might not care a ton if the past laptop lasted 10 years. I would hesitate to go with the prior versions given the chip change. Doesnt matter much right now but in 5 years it might...
student
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by student »

Both Amazon and Best Buy offer discount on occasions. If anyone in your family is a student, you can get an educational discount. Currently Amazon is selling one for $929 instead of $999.
jeam3131
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by jeam3131 »

Watch on slickdeals for a while, or wait for deals on discounted apple giftcards
JayhawkGolfer
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by JayhawkGolfer »

I ordered a Macbook in Oct. 2020. Free Airpods, 0% for 12 months on the Apple Card, plus 3% cash back. Worked well as my daughter wanted Airpods.
Likely to be a similar deal as we approach Black Friday.
harrychan
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by harrychan »

I would say Amazon or Costco has the best prices and return policies. Costco has the occasional $50 off $500 which I used for the Mac mini.
This is not legal or certified financial advice but you know that already.
Flyer24
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Flyer24 »

Watch for sales to start coming out as the holidays approach. We saved 10% on a good Macbook last year with BestBuy during November.
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calmaniac
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by calmaniac »

I always check the MacRumors web site to find out what's what on buying a Mac. Looks like the MBA model is a year old and a bit long in the tooth. May be worth waiting for the next model....or buying now if Apple has it on discount.
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jhfenton
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by jhfenton »

Maverick3320 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 12:14 pm Other than the Apple store, is there a better (read: cheaper) place to buy a Macbook? Is there an older, similar version that might be a better value? Do they ever go on sale? As a PC/Android guy I'm not terribly familiar with the Apple ecosystem.
Certified refurbished laptops purchased directly from Apple can be a good deal. That's where I bought our older son's MacBook Air this past summer. (He's a freshman in college this fall.) They come with the normal warranty and are indistinguishable from new.

At this point, though, you can probably find comparable new MacBook prices on the same model. I couldn't at the time.

Under no circumstances would I buy a MacBook at this point with an Intel processor. They just can't compete with the Macs running on Apple Silicon. The latest MacBook Pros just came out this month. As others have said, we could see a new MacBook Air in the next few months.
rebellovw
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by rebellovw »

This boglehead that has posted hate for Macbooks - and I just bought an iMac 27Inch two weeks ago (saved 100 bucks through BestBuy store that matched Amazon price) - that I absolutely love recommends:

Make sure to get at least 1 TB - SSD - here is what I did wrong - but I was very lucky:
I bought a new 2018 Macbook Pro in 18- I went cheap on the SSD 128GB - I later found 128GB wouldn't work - I could barely fit Apple updates - in fact many times I had to delete files to make it work. At the time I thought - hey I'll just upgrade it -NOPE! Not possible I found out since the SSDs are soldered in. I later came to find out that the MacBookPro that I bought was able to have an upgrade - but it was tricky - I had to use non-Apple parts - once that hokey upgrade completed (special tools, removing black circuit tape, very fine connections etc - I then had 1TB of disk space - no more issues!

Then my keyboard had the dreaded apple keyboard issue - well Apple was very cool and fixed that by replacing the keyboard completely.

So I'm now finally happy.

and those stupid lightning ports that they use - I'm so glad my iMac uses regular ports I can now use all my regular USB devices w/o adapters - the new MacBook Pro's will have better ports.

Get a MacBookPro when it comes out with the better USB ports and with at least 500GB or more disk space. Should last a long time. My MacBookPro is now perfect - fast - and does what I need. It is my understanding they fixed all their mistakes with the new Pro. Worth the extra $$.
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Maverick3320
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Maverick3320 »

rebellovw wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 1:36 pm This boglehead that has posted hate for Macbooks - and I just bought an iMac 27Inch two weeks ago (saved 100 bucks through BestBuy store that matched Amazon price) - that I absolutely love recommends:

Make sure to get at least 1 TB - SSD - here is what I did wrong - but I was very lucky:
I bought a new 2018 Macbook Pro in 18- I went cheap on the SSD 128GB - I later found 128GB wouldn't work - I could barely fit Apple updates - in fact many times I had to delete files to make it work. At the time I thought - hey I'll just upgrade it -NOPE! Not possible I found out since the SSDs are soldered in. I later came to find out that the MacBookPro that I bought was able to have an upgrade - but it was tricky - I had to use non-Apple parts - once that hokey upgrade completed (special tools, removing black circuit tape, very fine connections etc - I then had 1TB of disk space - no more issues!

Then my keyboard had the dreaded apple keyboard issue - well Apple was very cool and fixed that by replacing the keyboard completely.

So I'm now finally happy.

and those stupid lightning ports that they use - I'm so glad my iMac uses regular ports I can now use all my regular USB devices w/o adapters - the new MacBook Pro's will have better ports.

Get a MacBookPro when it comes out with the better USB ports and with at least 500GB or more disk space. Should last a long time. My MacBookPro is now perfect - fast - and does what I need. It is my understanding they fixed all their mistakes with the new Pro. Worth the extra $$.
Not that I disagree, but a Macbook Pro with even a fairly tiny 14" screen starts at $2000, which is an entirely different ballgame in terms of cost.
Blue456
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Blue456 »

Maverick3320 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 1:47 pm
rebellovw wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 1:36 pm This boglehead that has posted hate for Macbooks - and I just bought an iMac 27Inch two weeks ago (saved 100 bucks through BestBuy store that matched Amazon price) - that I absolutely love recommends:

Make sure to get at least 1 TB - SSD - here is what I did wrong - but I was very lucky:
I bought a new 2018 Macbook Pro in 18- I went cheap on the SSD 128GB - I later found 128GB wouldn't work - I could barely fit Apple updates - in fact many times I had to delete files to make it work. At the time I thought - hey I'll just upgrade it -NOPE! Not possible I found out since the SSDs are soldered in. I later came to find out that the MacBookPro that I bought was able to have an upgrade - but it was tricky - I had to use non-Apple parts - once that hokey upgrade completed (special tools, removing black circuit tape, very fine connections etc - I then had 1TB of disk space - no more issues!

Then my keyboard had the dreaded apple keyboard issue - well Apple was very cool and fixed that by replacing the keyboard completely.

So I'm now finally happy.

and those stupid lightning ports that they use - I'm so glad my iMac uses regular ports I can now use all my regular USB devices w/o adapters - the new MacBook Pro's will have better ports.

Get a MacBookPro when it comes out with the better USB ports and with at least 500GB or more disk space. Should last a long time. My MacBookPro is now perfect - fast - and does what I need. It is my understanding they fixed all their mistakes with the new Pro. Worth the extra $$.
Not that I disagree, but a Macbook Pro with even a fairly tiny 14" screen starts at $2000, which is an entirely different ballgame in terms of cost.
If she is going to keep her laptop for another 10 years it maybe worth it.
rebellovw
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by rebellovw »

Maverick3320 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 1:47 pm
rebellovw wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 1:36 pm This boglehead that has posted hate for Macbooks - and I just bought an iMac 27Inch two weeks ago (saved 100 bucks through BestBuy store that matched Amazon price) - that I absolutely love recommends:

Make sure to get at least 1 TB - SSD - here is what I did wrong - but I was very lucky:
I bought a new 2018 Macbook Pro in 18- I went cheap on the SSD 128GB - I later found 128GB wouldn't work - I could barely fit Apple updates - in fact many times I had to delete files to make it work. At the time I thought - hey I'll just upgrade it -NOPE! Not possible I found out since the SSDs are soldered in. I later came to find out that the MacBookPro that I bought was able to have an upgrade - but it was tricky - I had to use non-Apple parts - once that hokey upgrade completed (special tools, removing black circuit tape, very fine connections etc - I then had 1TB of disk space - no more issues!

Then my keyboard had the dreaded apple keyboard issue - well Apple was very cool and fixed that by replacing the keyboard completely.

So I'm now finally happy.

and those stupid lightning ports that they use - I'm so glad my iMac uses regular ports I can now use all my regular USB devices w/o adapters - the new MacBook Pro's will have better ports.

Get a MacBookPro when it comes out with the better USB ports and with at least 500GB or more disk space. Should last a long time. My MacBookPro is now perfect - fast - and does what I need. It is my understanding they fixed all their mistakes with the new Pro. Worth the extra $$.
Not that I disagree, but a Macbook Pro with even a fairly tiny 14" screen starts at $2000, which is an entirely different ballgame in terms of cost.
Yeah - probably over the top - the air should be quite nice - 256GB SSD should be more than enough space. Best Buy is good as you can actually go in and see it and touch it etc - and they price match. And I just checked the ports on the new Pro - still USB C with some HDMI etc but no USB-A -so not much benefit there. My iMac has USB-C and USB-A which is nice - I thought the Pro was the same but doesn't look like that - so no real advantage there - just live with the USB-C with an adaptor for all the others.
rebellovw
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by rebellovw »

Make sure to get the Air with the Apple T2 Security Chip - who knows when you might really need it.

Computers that have the Apple T2 Security Chip
These Mac computers have the Apple T2 Security Chip:

iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, 2020)
iMac Pro
Mac Pro (2019)
Mac Pro (Rack, 2019)
Mac mini (2018)
MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2020)
MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2019)
MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2018)
srt7
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by srt7 »

What does she use it for? Would a top of the line iPad suffice?
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mpsz
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by mpsz »

jhfenton wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 12:27 pm Under no circumstances would I buy a MacBook at this point with an Intel processor. They just can't compete with the Macs running on Apple Silicon. The latest MacBook Pros just came out this month. As others have said, we could see a new MacBook Air in the next few months.
+1, do not buy an Intel MacBook at this point. You are likely to see these on sale but do not fall for the trap.

The entry-level Air is a nice upgrade over a computer that is 10 years old. Just get enough SSD capacity for whatever you are storing. Whatever specs you get for the RAM and CPU will still be fine and a tremendous upgrade over the old machine.
TrustButVerifying
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by TrustButVerifying »

Have you checked out what is available at Costco? They appear to have some models of Apple Laptops for $200 or more off.

Another thing to consider is trading in that old Apple Laptop. Costco has affiliated itself with a company called phobio where you can trade in your old apple laptop/ipad/watch and get a Costco Gift card in return. https://phobio.com/tradein/costco/
BabaWawa
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by BabaWawa »

Not a bad investment if she gets ten years out of it. For my meager needs I'm happy with a mid range Chromebook and spend the rest on something really important that gets better with age, like decent wine and bourbon. :sharebeer
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by cchrissyy »

Certified refurbished laptops purchased directly from Apple can be a good deal. That's where I bought our older son's MacBook Air this past summer. (He's a freshman in college this fall.) They come with the normal warranty and are indistinguishable from new.
I did the same thing for my kid just this week.

the Apple site makes it hard to find the page but look in the footer for the word "refurbished" and you'll get there.
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runninginvestor
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by runninginvestor »

Black Friday or back to school specials are usually when we look to buy electronics. It may be a decent discount, or extras like headphones/gift cards.

We look at the amortized cost for big purchases like this too. $1200 seems like a lot, but if we usually hold the product for 10 years, $120/year .. $12/mo seems much more palatable. If I was really concerned after that, I'd stop eating out once a month until I inevitably forget about it.
EnjoyIt
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by EnjoyIt »

This is about as extreme as I can think of. Get a good credit card with a sign up bonus that also has good bonus rate on online purchases. Bank of America Customized Cash rewards card come to mind which will give you $200 cash back on $1k in spend. You can can set it up to get 3% cash back on online purchases. Wait for a good deal and buy online. If you have $100k at Merrill Edge or at bank of America you will get 5.25% cash back instead of 3% cash back on that purchase. That should give you a decent savings on the laptop.
A time to EVALUATE your jitters: | viewtopic.php?p=1139732#p1139732
killjoy2012
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by killjoy2012 »

>>How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

1) Wait for a sale on said laptop at the Apple Store or BBY.
2) Buy giftcards at Kroger during their 4x fuel points weekends. Fuel discount is probably worth $100-200 depending on purchase price.
3) Buy said giftcards with a 6% cash back on groceries credit card. So that's another $60 off per $1k spent.
4) Decline all extra warranties. Self insure.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by anonenigma »

Definitely get one with the M1 chip, not a clearance model with the Intel chip - it will stay compatible longer. If you need the additional capabilities and can afford it, a new, more powerful Mac Book Pro was recently announced.

Costco would be a good place to buy the computer. They'll offer occasional discounts, just like the Apple Store and Amazon, but I believe that they give an extra year of warranty. If you use the Costco Citi Visa, that will add two more years of warranty and a 2% rebate because it's a purchase from Costco - that's in addition to the 2% rebate you'll get if you're an executive member.
Blue456
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Blue456 »

EnjoyIt wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 4:20 pm This is about as extreme as I can think of. Get a good credit card with a sign up bonus that also has good bonus rate on online purchases. Bank of America Customized Cash rewards card come to mind which will give you $200 cash back on $1k in spend. You can can set it up to get 3% cash back on online purchases. Wait for a good deal and buy online. If you have $100k at Merrill Edge or at bank of America you will get 5.25% cash back instead of 3% cash back on that purchase. That should give you a decent savings on the laptop.
+1. Better yet close the damn credit card after you get the bonus from them to stick it up to the banks.
EnjoyIt
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by EnjoyIt »

EnjoyIt wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 4:20 pm This is about as extreme as I can think of. Get a good credit card with a sign up bonus that also has good bonus rate on online purchases. Bank of America Customized Cash rewards card come to mind which will give you $200 cash back on $1k in spend. You can can set it up to get 3% cash back on online purchases. Wait for a good deal and buy online. If you have $100k at Merrill Edge or at bank of America you will get 5.25% cash back instead of 3% cash back on that purchase. That should give you a decent savings on the laptop.
Someone above gave me the idea to use the credit card I just mentioned to buy the gift card from Kroger to get fuel points for a $1 off/gallon of gas up to $35 gallon which you should be able to do 2-4 times depending on how many points they are currently giving.

using 3% cash back on a $1k laptop you get $30
$200 as a credit card bonus for spending $1k
approximately $100 in fuel points savings
Buying through a cash back portal 1% for $10
That all adds up to $340 in savings.

Now. . . that is as extreme as I can think of.
A time to EVALUATE your jitters: | viewtopic.php?p=1139732#p1139732
Trader Joe
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Trader Joe »

Maverick3320 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 12:14 pm My wife has an apple laptop that has to be like 10 years old. She's constantly complaining about it but is too frugal to upgrade.

Me, being the great husband, have decided to get her a new Macbook Air for Christmas. It looks like they start around $1000, which is way more than I usually spend for Christmas, but I've moved past that.

Other than the Apple store, is there a better (read: cheaper) place to buy a Macbook? Is there an older, similar version that might be a better value? Do they ever go on sale? As a PC/Android guy I'm not terribly familiar with the Apple ecosystem.
The first thing that I would do is take a look at the Bestbuy.com website.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Mike83 »

There is an apple fan site I use that lists an array of best current pricing. Google Apple Insider, go there and select DEALS from the menu. They show about ten vendors with pricing for every model.

My advice is select a current model that has an M1 chip. This is an apple chip representing their migration away from intel. These machines will have great longevity and represent the future. At the Apple Insider site, you can see a M1, 8GB, 256GB, 7-core GPU Space Gray for $929 with free shipping at Amazon. Excellent general purpose, travel comfortable laptop.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by rockstar »

You're being too frugal. You should plan on a new laptop every 3-5 years. They're like phones. The hardware gets dated and the batteries die.

But if you don't want to buy on in an Apple store, then Costco is a good alternative.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by madbrain »

I personally wouldn't touch anything Apple with a ten foot pole. Nor would I buy any laptop from anybody, ever.

But for large electronic purchases, including computer parts, I use my Costco credit card, which extends the manufacturer warranty by 2 years. It also extends warranty contracts such as AppleCare by 2 years, up to a maximum of 7 years.

I would definitely set an alert on Slickdeals for the model(s) I'm interested in, and use the Costco card to purchase, not necessarily from Costco, as they may not have the best price. Slickdeals allowed me to purchase a Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ this year for under $400. Normal price is around $800. I don't think Apple discounts by quite that much, though. Although you may get a deal on an old Intel Mac.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by madbrain »

mpsz wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 2:38 pm +1, do not buy an Intel MacBook at this point. You are likely to see these on sale but do not fall for the trap.
There are still some valid reasons to get one, if you want to dual-boot and run Windows for things like games, that wouldn't run very well under virtual machines. It's something you can't do on the newer ARM-based models. Apple hasn't dropped Intel from all of its models yet. Just most.
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Callisto
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Callisto »

Apple refurbished gets you a few hundred dollars off. Its not the cheapest, but you guarantee there's nothing wrong with it, both in terms of hardware and software.

Third party reburbishers off Ebay will provide you great value, but depending on the nature of the third party repair, you may end up with a system which cannot receive future OS upgrades, and certain Apple features may be disabled. I shopped around and got a 2019 Macbook Pro for just over 1000 off sticker which wasn't repaired in any way.

Unlike most suggestions, I would definitely save on an Intel rather than M1. If your wife was using a 10 year old model, she clearly doesn't care about performance, and it won't affect her user experience. Let the people who actually need the performance pick up the latest and greatest, take advantage of the influx of great laptops that are about to hit the second hand market at a major discount.
mike@jb
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by mike@jb »

I’m getting myself an M1 MacBook Air for Christmas.
I’ve been keeping my 2013 MacBook Pro on life-support the last few months, but it’s time...
SuzBanyan
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by SuzBanyan »

Apple gives a 10% discount to Veterans and Military members, if that is applicable to your family.
Mike83
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Mike83 »

I'm going to state again my recommendation to go with the new series chip, "M1". I've been running a small business exclusively with 50 Mac computers (desktops, laptops) plus phone and iPads for 25 years. Your DW likely expects many years of good use, and you will get it with the M1, which will support new OS releases for MANY more years than the outgoing intel chips. We are at an inflection point, buy an Apple M1 machine if you are buying an apple pc. Apple's own silicon is their future, and desktop-phone operating systems and applications will merge (and have already started that multiyear process).

Nothing wrong with Costco if you are a member. Other cards can also offer a rebate and extended warranty.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by student »

A plus for the M1 MacBook Air is no fan noise...
njdealguy
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by njdealguy »

I'd look at Best Buy open box deals for the M1 Macbook Air which comes and goes fast when available.

Earlier this year I was able to get the base M1 Air in silver from open box in excellent condition (essentially someone else's return from 2 days ago) for $650 when the new one goes for $999. This had the remaining manufacturer warranty and by using my Citi premier card (Citi costco gives same benefit) the warranty was extended by another 2 years.
richardglm
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by richardglm »

I expect good black friday sales. Check Apple specific news sites and blogs the week before as they will usually post all the deals.

The M1 macbook air is an excellent device well worth the money imho.

I would not buy the Intel one.
rebellovw wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 2:04 pm Make sure to get the Air with the Apple T2 Security Chip - who knows when you might really need it.

Computers that have the Apple T2 Security Chip
These Mac computers have the Apple T2 Security Chip:

iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, 2020)
iMac Pro
Mac Pro (2019)
Mac Pro (Rack, 2019)
Mac mini (2018)
MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2020)
MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2019)
MacBook Air (Retina, 13-inch, 2018)
Just to be clear, the new M1 Macs include all the features of the T2 chip and much more, so you won't find the T2 chip specifically in any of the new M1 macs.
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by FIre Fighter »

1. Set a deal alert at slickdeals.net. This is by far the best thing you can do to get a deal. Expect at least $150 off an M1 MacBook Air during the holidays (as recently seen at Amazon).

2. All things being equal, buy at Costco due to their return policy and warranty. They extend the manufacture’s warranty by an extra year, and if you use the Costco credit card you get two additional years coverage for free (for a total for 4 years).

3. You can often get great deals on an Open Box item at Best Best, especially when stacked on top of a Best Buy sale. One in “Excellent” condition was most likely one just used for a week and then returned, so essentially brand new.

4. Don’t buy directly from Apple as they rarely discount. The exception would be a refurb, but you’ll find a new one on sale elsewhere for less than a refurb.

5. As other have stated, only consider the M1 Mac and don’t be tempted by sales on the Intel processor. The M1 will perform much better now and in the future. The M1 MacBook Air sounds perfect for your wife, and you’ll find one for between $800 - $850 in the coming weeks.
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markjk
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by markjk »

I'd get the latest model at the best price you can find. The reason I recommend the latest model is it gets you the most time with the device. Apple devices are very good but they do have a shelf life as they will stop taking software upgrades at some point. Calculating the value of the savings buying an older device versus the value of the time you'll have it if you buy the newer device, is hard. I've tried to rationalize the lower prices (since of course I want to spend less) for the older models. But, then the older model goes out of support sooner and I have to go back and buy another replacement device sooner. So, did the savings actually work out for me in the long term? After decades of doing this, I've just decided to go with the newest model at the lowest price I can find moving forward.

Black Friday is around the corner. You will most likely find new models on some top type of sale. They won't be as inexpensive as the older models, but you will have the device longer. There is also nothing wrong with getting that older model at a cheaper price. Just know it won't last as long and you'll have to upgrade sooner.
greengates
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by greengates »

markjk wrote: Tue Oct 26, 2021 5:24 am I'd get the latest model at the best price you can find. The reason I recommend the latest model is it gets you the most time with the device. Apple devices are very good but they do have a shelf life as they will stop taking software upgrades at some point. Calculating the value of the savings buying an older device versus the value of the time you'll have it if you buy the newer device, is hard. I've tried to rationalize the lower prices (since of course I want to spend less) for the older models. But, then the older model goes out of support sooner and I have to go back and buy another replacement device sooner. So, did the savings actually work out for me in the long term? After decades of doing this, I've just decided to go with the newest model at the lowest price I can find moving forward.

I’ve come to the same conclusion.
dknightd
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by dknightd »

I go to apple.com and spec out exactly what I want.
Edit: since it is getting difficult to upgrade apple laptops I usually specify the max ram available and twice the storage I’m currently using.
Last edited by dknightd on Tue Oct 26, 2021 8:09 am, edited 2 times in total.
If you value a bird in the hand, pay off the loan. If you are willing to risk getting two birds from the market, invest the funds. Retired 9/19. Mortgage payed off 5/21. I have some 0% loans to pay off.
02nz
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by 02nz »

Generally the best deals are Micro Center (see if they have a location near you; $800 right now https://slickdeals.net/f/15346663-macbo ... rchV2Algo1) and Best Buy, which sometimes runs "Student Deals." The base model has gone as low as $750.
sls239
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by sls239 »

When I bought, a few months ago, I got a 6% discount through my employer and was able to stack that with another 6% that was being offered by getting the Apple credit card.
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Maverick3320
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Maverick3320 »

srt7 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 2:35 pm What does she use it for? Would a top of the line iPad suffice?
I have a decent ipad (from work) that we don't actually use very often. The main thing for her is probably answering emails, so a lot of typing, which is still a bit clunky on an ipad. Also the typical browsing/netflix, casual use stuff.
Topic Author
Maverick3320
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Maverick3320 »

rockstar wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 7:21 pm You're being too frugal. You should plan on a new laptop every 3-5 years. They're like phones. The hardware gets dated and the batteries die.

But if you don't want to buy on in an Apple store, then Costco is a good alternative.
Ha, I agree...but it's actually my wife's fault. I purchase a new laptop for myself around the four-year mark or so. She refuses to buy a new one for herself!
Katietsu
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Katietsu »

Maverick3320 wrote: Tue Oct 26, 2021 11:02 am
srt7 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 2:35 pm What does she use it for? Would a top of the line iPad suffice?
I have a decent ipad (from work) that we don't actually use very often. The main thing for her is probably answering emails, so a lot of typing, which is still a bit clunky on an ipad. Also the typical browsing/netflix, casual use stuff.
Not trying to change your mind. But I am considering an iPad with a bluetooth keyboard with stand for someone with the listed use profile.
Somethingwitty92912
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Somethingwitty92912 »

If you are a student you can get a discount.
Dottie57
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by Dottie57 »

If you have an apple branded credit card and buy from apple store you get 3% back.

https://www.apple.com/apple-card/
hudson
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Re: How would a Boglehead buy a new Apple laptop?

Post by hudson »

Maverick3320 wrote: Mon Oct 25, 2021 12:14 pm My wife has an apple laptop that has to be like 10 years old. She's constantly complaining about it but is too frugal to upgrade.

Me, being the great husband, have decided to get her a new Macbook Air for Christmas. It looks like they start around $1000, which is way more than I usually spend for Christmas, but I've moved past that.

Other than the Apple store, is there a better (read: cheaper) place to buy a Macbook? Is there an older, similar version that might be a better value? Do they ever go on sale? As a PC/Android guy I'm not terribly familiar with the Apple ecosystem.
I just buy from the Apple store so that I can configure it like I want it. I'm sure that you can shop around and do better. Isn't there a "used" store?

EDIT:
I'm also a PC person that bought a mac. Why? It integrates well with my IPhone/IPad, and I wanted to learn the mac operating system. The MacBook air fit my needs with the following 3 upgrades from the basic model:
Apple M1 chip with 8‑core CPU, 8‑core GPU, and 16‑core Neural Engine
16GB unified memory
1TB SSD storage

I also got this so I could hook up a monitor and a mouse: USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter
Your wife may not need the above extras. For me, I figure that it will be going strong for 5-6 years minimum, and I might as well get what I want.
Last edited by hudson on Thu Nov 25, 2021 8:34 am, edited 5 times in total.
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