Author Topic: June 2019 notes on buying used iMac  (Read 207 times)

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Offline momopi

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June 2019 notes on buying used iMac
« on: June 21, 2019, 03:44:19 PM »
For those who might be interested in buying an iMac used to save a few bucks, the price on 2009-2012  27" iMac has gone down a lot.  I've seen them advertised on Craiglist for $250-$350.

They're still very usable with acceptable performance if you upgrade to SSD.  You can also install OSX Mojave with the macOS Mojave Patcher on unsupported models.  However there are a few caveats:

1.  The 2010-2011 models with AMD Radeon 5000 and 6000 series graphics cards have compatibility issues with OSX Mojave and is not recommended.

2.  OSX Catalina will be out shortly and the Catalina patcher (for earlier unsupported models) is still in the works.  At this time we don't know which models will definitely support Catalina with the patcher.

3.  If you purchased an used iMac for $250 and spent another $200 (*) for SSD upgrade (SSD + install) at MicroCenter, your total cost comes out to $450.  At this point you might be better paying $350 for an used one that already has SSD installed, or even $500 for a late 2012 model that will support OSX Catalina.

(*) Upgrading the HDD in iMac will require special tools and HDD sensor cable.  You could order these yourself if you're DIY kind of guy, or pay MicroCenter in Tustin to do it for you.

So before you buy that $250-$350 iMac, you need to consider if you're OK with running it as is, or do you want to upgrade to Mojave, and do you need SSD upgrade for performance enhancement.  If you had to spend hundreds of dollars on SSD and RAM upgrades, that $250-$350 iMac might not be a good deal.  But if you're fine with running it with High Sierra with various software the seller already installed for you, then it might be a good deal regardless.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2019, 04:28:43 PM by momopi »

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