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Best place to buy a mac? Do I get a Warranty?

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Scotty
Best place to buy a mac? Do I get a Warranty?
on Sep 27, 2005 at 5:13:06 pm

Hi

Where's the best place to buy a mac? Is it directly from Apple? Do you suggest I get a Warranty?

thanks


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Jeff Carpenter
Re: Best place to buy a mac? Do I get a Warranty?
on Sep 27, 2005 at 6:11:35 pm

They'll always come with a warranty. Applecare is an extended warranty, which can be very nice to have if you have problems later on. That's really up to you, though. My own policy is that I buy it for laptops but not for desktops. I can't tell you what to do, though, you just have to decide if you want to risk your computer breaking or not. Rest assured, if you get it home and it's broken that will be covered no matter what you do.


There are lots of places to buy new Macs:

Apple.com (and real stores)
powermax.com
Smalldog.com
bhphotovideo.com
macmall.com
compusa.com (and real stores)

That's just a few, there are many others. Whatever you do, check the price of RAM at crucial.com first. If it's less there, buy it put it in yourself. If one of these places offers it for the same amount, let them do it.

Some places will allow more custimization than others, although if you call them on the phone they'll probably offer even more changed than their web pages admit. Some will have deals or sales running. If you find two sites have the same price but one is offering a free printer, well, take that into consideration.

If you're looking to put together a real high-end system with extra video capture cards there are even places that will sell you systems already built for that. I can't suggest any as I've always put what I need in them myself, but others here will know.


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Tony!
Re: Best place to buy a mac? Do I get a Warranty?
on Sep 27, 2005 at 7:04:34 pm

I give a thumbs up to http://www.smalldog.com/ and http://www.powermax.com/

They are both Apple authorized and they both do "Build to Order" Mac's (the same as Apple.com) which is very rare. More than likey they are both out of state for you and so that means no tax. Shipping charges apply, but are usually much less than sales tax. I've bought several custom Mac's from both of them and had no problems at all. Powermax sometimes with throw in some extras or give an unofficial discount (smalldog, is unlikely to do the same).

Of course Apple.com is an excellent suggestion as well, if you don't mind paying the sales tax. I don't see any advantage of buying from MacMall, MacZone, etc unless they have a return or something they are selling cheap (those usually sell in minutes and are a risk coming from them, in my opinion and experience).

Jeff's advice about the memory/RAM should be followed. If you need printers, scanners, Firewire drives, or other devices, I'd shop around and not buy them from Apple in most cases (you'll save money).

I have no advice on extended warranties for you. Jeff's recommendations seem good. I personally never get Apple care or any extended warranty on anything I buy. I've been lucky, I guess, to not have problems, but it feels too much like a scam for me to ever support extended warranties. With all the TV's, refrigerators, stereo equipment, washing machines, lawnmowers, microwaves, etc, etc, etc, I'd be broke if I bought extended warranties on everything. The money I save by not ever buying the warranties, would easily pay for any repair or replacement if anyone did fail after their short free warranty. This is definitely not the way to go for everyone, especially new users, but it works for me. If I had to buy an extended warranty for one thing, it would be my PowerBook. Do what you feel comfortable with.

Tony!





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scotty
Re: Best place to buy a mac? Do I get a Warranty?
on Sep 27, 2005 at 11:13:08 pm

Tony & Jeff

I really appreciate the responses! VEry helpful!


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