Should I buy an ex-demo MacBook?

 In Daily, Ideas, Inspiration




Buying a new Mac is an expensive investment. Apple Macs don’t come with a small price tag. In fact, even if you decide to buy a demo model through your local iStore, you are still looking at £1,000 or more. Some iStore’s will provide a discount of 20% on the price of a demo Apple Mac. However,  you need to ask yourself how much that Mac has been used and played with as a demo product.

As Mac repair experts based in Ipswich, we see a lot of Apple Macs coming through our doors every day. Many of them have been bought new. Some are second hand and others are ex-demo models.

The parts that get damaged on demo Apple Macs are varied. Here are a few things to look out for if you are thinking of contacting your local Ipswich iStore.

Apple Mac keyboards

The ex-demo model Mac typically has quite a used keyboard. This is because it’s been sat open for the public to investigate. Even if the keyboard isn’t too well-worn, we’d advise you get it thoroughly cleaned. Like a shop door handle, it will have had many hands over it. From a hygiene point of view, a professional clean is sensible. From a mechanical point of view, don’t be surprised if things don’t work so well with the keys. Toddlers with sticky hands thumping away at the keyboard, won’t have done the Mac much good.

Apple Mac screen health

Furthermore, a demo model MacBook could well have been left standing open for 12 hours a day. It might not have been shut down properly at the end of business either. While screens are built to withstand long usage, the problems that affect ex-demo Macs are usually more to do with rough handling. Screens don’t take well to being knocked about or poked – and these are all consequences of being on display to the public.

Apple Mac battery life

Beware the battery life of an ex demo Apple Mac. Batteries typically have around 1000 charges in them – and after that, things start to go down hill. A Mac that has been left sat open, sometimes plugged in and sometimes not, for a year or more on a shop floor for 12 hours a day, will have seen a number of re-charges. As a result, the recharges might not have been a full empty and re-charge cycle, which again, typically shortens your battery life. Make sure you do a battery diagnostics test on any ex display MacBook with a tempting price tag.

The USB ports

Don’t forget to check the health of the USB ports. You’d be amazed at how many things get shoved into them – and how easily they can be damaged. We’ve even had ex display models with chewing gum stuck in the ports… Needless to say, it was a reasonably expensive repair.

Is the price tag worth it?

We don’t think it is. An ex-demo MacBook from your local Ipswich iStore will come in at around £250 cheaper than the new one. Also, factor in the stress to the keyboard, a new battery, and that the screen may have taken a pounding. All these components are expensive to replace. A backlit keyboard and a screen will almost certainly set you back around £400 if they require replacement. Furthermore, Apple Macs are delicate machines. The tech is fantastic – but they don’t take well to rough handling and over-use in the wrong way.


Repairing your tech is environmentally friendly and cost effective too. For our unique collection and delivery service in the Suffolk area, call 01473 845011 today. We can collect and deliver your repaired MacBook, iMac or Mac Mini back to your home or office for no extra cost.

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