Want An Apple Hardware Bargain? – Go Refurb.

The Canadian Press’s Michael Oliveira advises Apple fans looking to save a few bucks on a Mac or mobile idevice to consider getting a lightly used example without the risks inherent in buying through online classified ads or auction sites.

Apple itself offers Apple Certified Refurbished products which are so-called “open box” or returned items that have been thoroughly checked out and had any necessary repairs done, plus new batteries where applicable, before being repackaged in distinct ACR boxes and sold with the same one-year warranty and AppleCare eligibility as new Apple machines. I’ve bought four Apple refurb. units over the past few years, including two iPods, a 17-inch PowerBook, and my current Core 2 Duo MacBook, and all have been cosmetically flawless in appearance and reliable performers at substantial discounts from regular Apple prices.

I intend on going refurb. with my next Mac system purchase as well. iPads? Maybe not so much. The technology advance turnover with iPads has been so rapid, and seems to be becoming even more so, that my inclination there is to buy the latest iteration new.

Mr. Oliveira notes that Consumer Reports considers buying refurbished goods from trusted manufacturers and retailers to be only “a slightly higher risk” than buying new.

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