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Refurbished Laptops?

by bbouzos / July 12, 2012 9:35 AM PDT

I'm currently between laptops and am trying to buy an interim computer; nothing permanent, just something that will work between now and when I finally save up enough to get a decent laptop. So I was considering buying a refurbished computer since they seem to be pretty cheap. Something like one of these:

http://www.unixsurplus.com/products/laptops?pagesize=40

Have you ever bought a refurbished computer/server/anything for that matter? Has it worked out for you, or does it tend to be a hassle?

Thanks

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All Answers

Best Answer as chosen by bbouzos

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Yes those are cheap.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 12, 2012 10:46 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

It's like a used car. My bet are those cheaps are refurbed with a wipe of windex and little else. The refurbs I see at ibm.com, newegg.com, geeks.com have been a step up but if cheap is your need and these will do, why not?

It's not like you are expecting them to last long.
Bob

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Answer
Reburb Laptops
by baybreeze / July 14, 2012 6:56 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

I bought a refurb Acer laptop 2 yrs ago. It ended up having a problem where nothing showed up on the screen, it was black. LUCKILY, when I bought the laptop, I also bought a separate 2 year warranty for reburb products through Squaretrade. I filed a claim, shipped the laptop to their repair center and had my repaired laptop back all within about 4 or 5 days!! I was actually flabbergasted! And it was fixed with no other issues. Turned out it was the graphics card that went bad.

Of course it can be risky buying a refurb, however, one can have the same problems with items bought brand new. When buying reburb, you really have to read ALL the fine print about the return policy and warranty, if there is any warranty on it. Some only warrant reburbs for 90 days. Some others a whole year.

I know many people say that buying extended warranties is a rip-off, but in my case, it really came in handy. I think it all depends on where you buy the warranty. Squaretrade is very highly rated and since I have actually dealt with them with a claim, I can actually say they were wonderful to work with. And....they do sell warranties for some refurbished products. I've always been able to find coupon codes to apply as well....their prices are very good. So, this is just another option to think about if buying reburb.

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Answer
refurbished laptops
by Brian briantllb / July 20, 2012 8:47 PM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

I dont have a lot of experience with refurbished laptops but i have owned two that I bought as refurbished over the years.

The first was an old panasonic toughbook wcich probably had little more tham a wipe down and the HDD re-formatted it had minimal RAM and a very small hard drive but it ran win 98 and word 97 OK and thats all I needed it for battery life was hopeless andthough it had a cd rom drive it had no FDD which at the time would have been handy. I eventually got bored with it and pulled it to peices.

The second is an HP/compaq NC2400 1.2Ghz dual core machine with all the bells and whistles including a thumb scanner maximum and cd/dvd rw drive RAM is 2GB which is installed and it is running XP professional Office 2010 etc. In comparison to my main PC it is slow but adequate and it has never let me down and I have never seen the dreaded blue screen on it. Basicaly refurbished laptops are a good deal as a back up machine if or when your main pc is down and you have to get that assignment in on time (as long as you have a relaible backup on a USB drive) I dont use the laptop as a primary PC but that is a personal choice because I don't like the laptop keyboard. I do like the fact that it was cheaper than a new laptop and is a lot smaller than some of the more recent laptop offerings (it can be hidden under a sheet of A4 paper). Even given the fact that new laptops have come down in price dramaticaly refurbished can still be a good deal and as I mentioned I use my laptop as a backup (or as a DVD player if I am travelling on a train somewhere) other than that I really dont like Laptops refurbed or not. I am not that thrilled with mobile phones either though I have one, a 'refurbished' blackberry but again only for emergencies I really do not like being phoned when ever some one feels like phoning me.

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Answer
Excellent value, depending where you nuy them
by Zouch / July 20, 2012 11:32 PM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

I habe three refurbished laptops, bought a few years apart, all IBM Thinkpads, a T23, 1.1 GHz Pentium III M, a T43 1.86 GHz Centrino (Sonoma, I think) and a T60 2 GHz Core Duo. All were shipped with Windows XP Pro and I've had no problems at all with any of them, indeed, this is the T43, now running Widows 7 Pro. When I bought them, they were around 2-3 years old and I paid roughly £120 to £200 in the UK. The T23 was privately refurbished by a one man small business and the other two by the company I got them from (Bigpockets).

One minor issue I had with all of them, though not functionally, is that none had the separate IBM maintenance partition on them, just the primary OS partition. First thing I did when they arrived was make two full backups of the hard drives before I did anything else. So far, I've not needed those!

One thing you do need to watch is that you either get the configuration that will meet your needs for your expected life of the machine, or check carefully that any upgrades you might need are still available. Foe example, my T23 would really benefit from a bit more memory but PC133 SODIMMs are as rare as hen's teeth these days and if you can find them, they will cost more than the machine! In the T43, IBM added a few extra commands to the HDD controller to cater for the air-bag protection and so any replacement hard disk had to be IBM certified, or it would flag an error at POST (which you could "F1" through). Lenovo support do actually offer a patch to update the firmware on certain HDD models to add the extra instructions nad certify the disk but patching HDD firmware is not for the faint hearted!

Would I recommend refurbished laptops? Yes but buy them from a reputable supplier - NOT your local computer swap meet! Check the warranty, you will often find they are 90 days, so give the machine a thorough shakedown when it arrives. In my case, I got quality machines, 2-3 years old at 90% saving off the new price. A good deal? I think so, if you are reasonably competent with PC maintenance.

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Answer
I see a new one is only $250.
by ahtoi / July 21, 2012 1:41 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?
http://www.frys.com/ads/page1

I have not bought any laptop but I have bought lots of refurbished electronic stuffs, generally it has worked out well for me. My rule is not to pay more than half of what it cost new. Otherwise I feel I am not getting any bargain.
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Answer
I've bought stuff refurbished
by porsche10x / July 21, 2012 10:54 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

I've had mostly good luck with refurbished electronics, especially computers. I will only buy a refurb "anything" if the savings is substantial compared to new. To me, saving 25% or so is not substantial. On the other hand, I tend to avoid getting anything with a high resolution LCD display as a refurb. I always have a nagging suspicion that it was returned for having too many pixels out, which wouldn't be repairable. I'm kinda picky about the image, but maybe you wouldn't mind. At the very least, I would check the return policy, which is often more restrictive for refurbished hardware.

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Answer
Refurb Regret
by MeanDonnaJean / July 22, 2012 3:30 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

My teenaged son begged for a laptop for quite a number of years so I finally purchased a refurbed for him. After readin' and hearin' rave reviews from a couple of people I know, I trustingly bought it from a client of ours who supposedly "specializes" in this area. From day one we ended up with nuthin' but problem after problem after problem with it and hadda send it back to the company no less than 3 times. I have never been so disappointed and disgusted as I was with that purchase, and don't even get me started on all the disheartenin' complaints I heard from my kid.

I ended up surprisingly buyin' him a brand spankin' new high performance HP laptop for Christmas (and at the time I even found a 33% off online coupon for it!) and to this very day its been nuthin' but fantastic. Needless to say, I learned my lesson well.

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Answer
Refurbished Laptops
by Ribgabby / August 1, 2012 7:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

I purchased 2 refurbished laptops before I learned my lesson. Do not buy them!!!
Waste of money. Each only lasted a year or less before they went caput completely!
Also they were not cheap. Paid at about $800.00 for each.

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Answer
worn out battery is likely
by porsche10x / August 7, 2012 2:36 AM PDT
In reply to: Refurbished Laptops?

Oh, one more thing. More often than not, refurb laptops do NOT come with new batteries. Chances are, you'll need to replace it much sooner than expected. Throw in the cost of a new battery and suddenly the refurb might not be such a great deal.

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