1. Ipheuria's Avatar
    I used to build my own machines. I was a gamer so I remember the fun of looking for the newest, hotest, motherboard, RAM, Videocard, etc. When hardware got upgraded my machine did too so that I could make it faster. I owned the same chassis for quite a number of years but the insides never stayed the same for more than a couple weeks. Even after I switched to laptops and eventually MacBook Pros I still upgraded the hardware to make it faster. Over time Apple has been moving in the direction of having everything soldered on so the machines are becoming less and less user upgradable. Even the new Mac Pro, though it is still upgradable is not as upgradable as previous generations. Just recently I started looking for a G4 Mac because that was the first computer I ever fell in love with. There was something about the shape of it, the colors, the case. I just loved it and even to this day when I see one it makes me smile and that is why I want to own one. It will probably not do much in my house but the beauty is that I can buy hardware for it with ease because they are so cheap. I can keep it running and I could even introduce my younger brother to Mac using the machine which will cost me a few dollars to buy and a few dollars to upgrade.

    I understand from a company's perspective having machines last more than 2 or 3 years is not good for sales. However many people still keep the current models for 2 or more years so really is there that much of a difference if the machine is user upgradable? It is arguable that the user will be able to have a great experience every year by upgrading the hardware. It is also arguable that instead of shaking their head and not being able to afford the machine because what the specs they ultimately need is too expensive. They could instead buy the base model and upgrade over time. It's not that I don't understand where they are coming from I've sold my previous MacBook Pros and my older iPhones. Even though I spent money to upgrade my MBP with a Solid State Drive (SSD) and maximum RAM. It's hard to put that cost into the price of the computer because people will just buy the cheaper stock machines on the used sites. The same goes for the iPhone, even though I had a factory unlocked iPhone that was encased in an Otterbox Defender from day one. It looked brand new when I put it up for sale but that didn't add to the asking price any more than the scuffed up iPhones of the same model people could find elsewhere. So in that regard buying the device as you want them and then selling them online used is an easier process because there is no extra money spent from the user on upgrades.

    I feel like Apple is trying to make their computers into disposable devices like the iPhone and iPad. It's something you own until it gets too slow or until the newer model comes out and then you sell it and buy the newer model. I just don't know if that is the right direction for them to go in? I understand both sides but I just still sit on the side of the fence that would rather be able to buy a MBP with 4GB and upgrade to 16GB later rather than sigh and look at the price tag of the model that has 16GB soldered to the motherboard.
    12-19-2013 12:09 PM
  2. SeanHRCC's Avatar
    I don't agree at all that they are trying to make them into disposable products...Apple's computer line has never been one that was geared or marketed to those who want maxed out internal's "just because", and I mean let's face it, NOTHING we do requires 16GB of RAM. I have 16GB of RAM on my MBP, and haven't noticed any benefit from it over the 8GB of RAM that it came with. 4GB is like a baseline, it is what most people would want at a bottom end for normal consumer usage...and that is what any company is going to focus on...not the high end people, not the low end budget people...they're going to focus on the majority, and 4GB is sufficient for the majority (and will be for many years to come).

    Let's also consider that Apple has never been known as a gaming machine, so people who are into such are not a target audience either. Apple got the reputation of being the computer maker for the graphic artist or video/music producer...these people are going to be the ones that take advantage of the optional RAM upgrades (which are a bit pricy, but are sufficient for what people need and really not that surprising given the standard cost of the Mac's anyways).

    Apple is making their computers as effortless an experience as they possibly can. They want you to own this computer for 4-5 years, never have to take it in, never have to upgrade anything, and just have a typical Apple user experience. They are accomplishing this across the spectrum of devices they sell...GREATLY succeeding at it. Most people don't WANT to open their computer up and change something...most consumers want to buy the computer, use the computer and enjoy not noticing the ownership experience because the machine works perfectly and doesn't give them issues to worry about.

    Apple is headed in the perfect direction...this is clearly reflected by their current success both monetarily and through customer response to the products.
    12-19-2013 12:38 PM
  3. SeanHRCC's Avatar
    Also, to comment on the "value" argument between mint devices and visually used devices...I completely disagree there as well. I have sold so many Apple devices over the years...ALL of them in mint condition (just by the nature of how I keep my own stuff). I have also sold many items from friends and family...some of which were in pretty moderately poor condition, and these devices certainly did NOT fetch the higher end of the spectrum when it comes to resale value. A good example was the 4S...when the iPhone 5 was released, I sold my iPhone 5 and a friends iPhone 5 (his had a cracked screen and a scuffed metal chassis)...his easily yielded significantly less money (over $50) than mine did, and I actually cut the guy who bought mine a deal because he was a co-worker.

    Condition is EVERYTHING with Apple products. In 2011, I sold a 2007 model standard Macbook (white) for $750. It was in mint condition, and did not include anything over what came with the machine when it was new (2GB of RAM, 250GB hard drive). This was at least $100 over the average I was finding online for machines in lesser condition, and around even with the amounts I found for machines of like condition.
    12-19-2013 12:51 PM
  4. kataran's Avatar
    Back in the day you bought a computer not for the resale value but for what you needed and wanted it for I also use to go to computer shows buying ram and video cards even a new motherboard it use to be chic to not have any screws on you case because you took it off so much you upgraded in pieces back then

    Present day you still buy what you want and need but know there is a market for your products and the way electronics are build there worth more whole to most people as parts are only for repairs not upgrades


    Sent from my iPhone 5s Gold 64GB
    12-19-2013 01:24 PM
  5. Ipheuria's Avatar
    Perhaps my use case is not big enough to matter. I use Mac and Windows and along with that Adobe CS. I'm not even a hardcore user because I have lots of friends who do editing that would choke on 8GBs of RAM. Running Win and Mac in parallel means resources are shared so when I can take my 16GBs of RAM and cut it in half to assign to each OS while still being able to use CS without pulling out my hair 8GBs doesn't cut it for me. This is just one scenario and I know there are tons more but like I said I guess we are not a big enough crowd for anyone to care about catering to.

    As for resale maybe I'm just putting my stuff on the wrong sites. Earlier this year I tried to sell my Mid 2010 model MBP which was in 10/10 condition because of the way I keep my stuff. I also spent a couple hundred to buy a 256GB SSD and more money to max it out with 8GBs of RAM. However this made no difference from the same stock config models for sale. I added extra for the upgrades I did and people were messaging me asking why I thought it was worth that much when they could get a brand new Air for the same or less money. Being someone who has bought basic machines and upgraded the internals I will probably never understand the pull it out of the box ans use it mentality and I guess I'm just a minority.


    Sent from my Space Grey iPhone 5s
    12-19-2013 02:17 PM
  6. SeanHRCC's Avatar
    You can never account for making money on modifications...this reflects anything from computers to houses (now days) to cars. You put an SSD in the computer...to a consumer (most anyways), this is not going to matter really, because it's simply representing the storage component that any computer will offer. To you? It was a major improvement...and it's better for the person who is buying it, but they're paying for the package, not the features...those are just icing on the cake really.

    In response to your first comment about representing a small niche...unfortunately, this IS true. I also represent a small niche...one that has refrained from upgrading to the newer Macbook Pro models because I like my 2012's ability to be torn down and upgraded/downgraded BY ME with little to no effort. I prefer that, and the features thus far have not drawn me in. The thing about it is though, they HAVE drawn in tons of people with these new machines, enough to where the Macbook market has exceeded other markets in the last year or so in growth (from what I remember seeing in an article), and comparative sales to other individual machines reflect this as well. That's not to say our ideas and preferences are unimportant, but they don't make Apple bigger, stronger and wealthier...and in the end, they are a business, not a specialty shop.

    4GB would not suffice for my usage...8GB would not suffice for my wife's usage at home for post production (she has a monster of a Mac Pro though, so it's not even a concern really, and certainly doesn't reflect most users, lol). MOST people though, 4GB is a good amount because most people aren't putting their machines through the paces. Apple knows this, but still offers the higher options for the heavy hitters.
    12-19-2013 02:32 PM

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