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New PC Laptop Having Trouble -Should I refund and get a Mac?


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#1 toryerp

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 05:42 PM

Hey all, I'm having a dilemma.

 

TLDR: my new Acer Aspire E 15 laptop has a messed up screen, should I get a refund and either finance a MacBook or find a used MacBook, or try to repair the Acer?

 

In mid march I bought a new laptop - an Acer Aspire E 15 from Amazon. A couple weeks ago I opened it and there was a big black spot on the screen with white lines coming from it. The laptop hadn't been dropped or even moved, I don't know what caused it. But reviews on amazon said other people had the same problem a month or two after buying the laptop.

 

I contacted amazon and they said I can return it for a refund. I contacted the seller and they said I could send it to them for repair. However, I use my laptop for work and couldn't go that long without it for them to fix it. When I contacted Acer about the warranty, they said that since the black spot is "finger shaped" (??) it's not covered under warranty. But it is so large that it's a real problem when trying to work, or even just generally use it.

 

So now I have to decide whether to get it repaired or get a refund and buy a new laptop. I'm leaning toward the latter. I really want a MacBook and was approved for financing from Apple.

However, my friend made the point that computers are kind of like cars in that they depreciate in value after you buy them. So is it really worth getting a new MacBook and financing it? Or should I look into getting a used one for cheaper? If I get a used one, how old is too old for it not to be worth it? What's a good model? Do you think I'm making the right choice?

 

The internet said that the Acer Aspire E 15 that I have now is one of the best for the money. And I could also just replace the screen for about $50. Just looking for opinions / advice. I've wanted a MacBook for a while -- I'm a graphic designer. But what would you do in this situation? Thanks!



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#2 smax013

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 07:06 PM

Hey all, I'm having a dilemma.
 
TLDR: my new Acer Aspire E 15 laptop has a messed up screen, should I get a refund and either finance a MacBook or find a used MacBook, or try to repair the Acer?
 
In mid march I bought a new laptop - an Acer Aspire E 15 from Amazon. A couple weeks ago I opened it and there was a big black spot on the screen with white lines coming from it. The laptop hadn't been dropped or even moved, I don't know what caused it. But reviews on amazon said other people had the same problem a month or two after buying the laptop.
 
I contacted amazon and they said I can return it for a refund. I contacted the seller and they said I could send it to them for repair. However, I use my laptop for work and couldn't go that long without it for them to fix it. When I contacted Acer about the warranty, they said that since the black spot is "finger shaped" (??) it's not covered under warranty. But it is so large that it's a real problem when trying to work, or even just generally use it.
 
So now I have to decide whether to get it repaired or get a refund and buy a new laptop. I'm leaning toward the latter. I really want a MacBook and was approved for financing from Apple.
However, my friend made the point that computers are kind of like cars in that they depreciate in value after you buy them. So is it really worth getting a new MacBook and financing it? Or should I look into getting a used one for cheaper? If I get a used one, how old is too old for it not to be worth it? What's a good model? Do you think I'm making the right choice?
 
The internet said that the Acer Aspire E 15 that I have now is one of the best for the money. And I could also just replace the screen for about $50. Just looking for opinions / advice. I've wanted a MacBook for a while -- I'm a graphic designer. But what would you do in this situation? Thanks!


My general thought would be to return it for a full refund if that is an option. I would definitely not spend more money to repair a brand new laptop if I had the option to return it. And even if the repair did not cost additional money, you mentioned the issue of being without the laptop during a repair period. So, it seems to make the most sense to return the laptop and get a new one.

Now, what you get is a completely separate question.

While I personally prefer Macs, I don't like to "push" my preference on others, especially since you can typically get more bang for your buck with a Windows laptop unless you start truly going for Windows laptops that are really similar in nature to a Mac laptop (i.e. similar level of thinness and weight and form factor that then results in similar types of construction...it is cheaper to built your typical 15" laptop that is an inch or so thick with a mostly plastic case with a removable battery, a typically 2.5" laptop drive and typical laptop components...the "slim" stuff will typically cost more...as Mac laptops do).

If you decide to get a Mac, then I might be able to offer some advice.

One option to save over a new Mac is to look as Apple's refurbished page. You generally will not save a ton of money that way (typically maybe $150 to maybe $300 on higher end models compared to that model's price when it was new), but you get the advantage of a 1 year Apple warranty and the option to extend it to 3 years with an AppleCare extended warranty...just like it if you get a new model. This will result is a slightly older model, but that maybe enough for what you need.

If you wanted to go used, then just be aware that Mac tend to hold their value more than most Windows laptops. So, you will likely be paying an amount of money for an older, used Mac model that would get you a nice new Windows computer. You can certainly find some deals. The other issue you will have to decide is whether you want to buy from some reputable entity that might offer at least some return period and at least minimal warranty. One site to consider would be Macsales.com. They offer used Macs and are reputable (I have bought drives, RAM, drive docks, and other things from them for quite a while). They will be on the expensive side (i.e. you can certainly find better deals for used Macs), but then you will get a warranty from them (I believe typically they offer a 90 day warranty unless the Mac comes with an AppleCare extended warranty that has not expired yet). Obviously, you can also look through eBay or find a local store. If you do go the used route, you can go to Everymac.com where they will have specs and info on every Mac model...and they will typically give an estimated retail value range for each Mac model to at least give you an idea if the price being asked for a used Mac is reasonable.

If you decide you want to go with a Mac and want a suggestion of what model I might recommend, then I will need to know more about your intended use (i.e. what kind of programs you want to use, kinds of tasks you will do with it, etc). Frankly, if you want suggestions from people for other Windows computer options, you likely still want to provide this information.

#3 toryerp

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 07:15 PM

Thank you, that's helpful. If I get a new computer, I do think I want to go the Mac route.

 

The programs I need to be able to run the most are from the Adobe Creative Suite (mostly Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign). I also often work with Squarespace and Wordpress. I'm a graphic designer and use my laptop for work. I also use it for personal things like social media, Netflix, email, and general web use.

 

If I found an older Mac for a good price, would it be a problem for running the most recent Adobe programs?



#4 smax013

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 07:54 PM

Thank you, that's helpful. If I get a new computer, I do think I want to go the Mac route.
 
The programs I need to be able to run the most are from the Adobe Creative Suite (mostly Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign). I also often work with Squarespace and Wordpress. I'm a graphic designer and use my laptop for work. I also use it for personal things like social media, Netflix, email, and general web use.
 
If I found an older Mac for a good price, would it be a problem for running the most recent Adobe programs?


It would all depend on how old the "older" Mac is. You would definitely want to steer clear of Core 2 Duo processors and get at least a model with an Intel iCore (i.e. either i5 or i7).

The other thing definitely I would recommend is to avoid any models that Apple considers "vintage" or "obsolete" unless you can get your hands on an older version of the Adobe programs. Such models, might have issues running the current Adobe program versions not to mention not be able to run the most current version of the macOS typically. You can find their lists for both categories here:

https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201624

I would also then likely avoid models that at close to the newest models on the above list for "vintage" as they likely will be added to the "vintage" list soon. The newest Mac laptop model currently on that vintage list is a 2011 model. So, I likely would go for at least a 2013 or 2014 model or newer. FWIW, I am typing this on a Mid 2014 15" Retina MacBook Pro with discrete graphics. I don't use the latest version of any of the current Adobe programs, but I do have Photoshop CS6 on it and it runs that fine (don't use it that often nor do I use it for heavy duty use, but it should run fine if I did).

I would also recommend getting a model that has 16 GB of RAM since you will be using Photoshop. While you could certainly survive with less and let Photoshop use a scratch disk on the SSD, it will greatly benefit from as much RAM as you can feed it. And 16 GB is the current max you can get on a Mac laptop.

Don't get overly worried about the size of the SSD for any used MacBook Pro or MacBook Air you might find. You can upgrade the SSD of any MacBook Pro or Air model (with the exception currently of the current 2016 MacBook Pro models) with a drive from OWC (https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/ssd/owc). You can as well with any MacBook model except the 2015 or 2016 models, but those are the only MacBook models you would want to consider since all the ones before that are 2010 models or earlier with Core 2 Duo processors. The point is that if you find what you consider to be say a perfect used Mid 2015 15" MacBook Pro model that has the right amount of RAM that you want, but has only say a 128 GB SSD, you can upgrade that SSD to something larger yourself after you buy it. So, don't worry to much about the size of the SSD.

Overall, I would likely recommend a MacBook Pro for what you describe as your use. You should not need one with discrete graphics from what you mentioned. You could also live with a 13" MacBook Air, but just keep in mind that it will NOT have the "Retina" display that the MacBook Pro will have. The other issue with the MacBook Air is that maximum RAM on them is 8 GB. So, if you do want to go with 16 GB of RAM, then you will need to look at MacBook Pros.

If you want to look at the refurbished models that Apple has, you can find them here:

https://www.apple.com/shop/browse/home/specialdeals/mac/macbook_pro

If you want to look at the used Mac that OWC has for sale, you can find them here:

https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/Apple_Systems/Used/Macs_and_Tablets

And as I said, Everymac is a good page to look up specs for any model:

http://www.everymac.com

#5 smax013

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Posted 27 May 2017 - 10:12 AM

I forgot to mention why I suggest finding a Mac laptop with 16 GB at the time you buy it.

You cannot upgrade RAM on any current or reasonably current Mac laptop. This has always been true of MacBook Airs. It has been true for all Retina MacBook Pro models (i.e. since about 2012). And is true for the newest incarnation of the MacBook (i.e. 2015 and 2016) model. So, if you follow my suggestion to stick with a model from at least 2013 or newer, then whatever RAM configuration it comes with will be the amount of RAM you will live with the whole time you have the computer (short of potentially swapping out the motherboard for one that has more RAM...the RAM is soldered to the motherboard). So, if you are going to go with a Mac laptop, then figure out how much RAM you want for that machine (for its entire life) and get the laptop with that amount of RAM.

So, if you get a Mac with laptop with 8 GB of RAM now, then there is effectively no way to get 16 GB of RAM in that laptop.

#6 MadmanRB

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Posted 27 May 2017 - 04:54 PM

Refund but dont buy a mac, they are overpriced garbage and you only pay for a PC with a stupid fruit logo on it.

For graphics design yes you want something a little better than your acer but spending over $1000 on a glorified Chromebook (which macbooks have become recently) is a dumb idea

Dont buy a old mac either, get a Dell, a Lenovo or a ASUS

To heck with apple and their overpriced nonsense.


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