Would you buy a secondhand computer?

pingin

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My 2012 27" iMac is slowing down and will probably implode one of these days. I had considered installing more memory—there are two free slots—but I'm not sure if that would make a big difference. The spinning wheel of death is there constantly, even for the simplest of tasks.

Not having thousands to spend on a new machine, I was wondering if anyone had bought a secondhand refurbished Mac. If so, how was it. There are plenty for sale on eBay, especially from the UK.
 

Shamrock

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Really depends on current specs of MAC but a memory upgrade will help but biggest improvement in terms of speed etc would be installing an SSD drive. 2nd hand/refurbished Macs are fine but price up cost of a memory/ssd upgrade v a refurb one.
 

pingin

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Really depends on current specs of MAC but a memory upgrade will help but biggest improvement in terms of speed etc would be installing an SSD drive. 2nd hand/refurbished Macs are fine but price up cost of a memory/ssd upgrade v a refurb one.
That's a good idea Shamrock. The machine itself is still in good condition. I've seen videos about doing an upgrade. They seem to involve removing the screen but that mightn't be as daunting as it looks.
 

SparkRite

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but biggest improvement in terms of speed etc would be installing an SSD drive.
Only if the SSD can be mounted directly onto the MB.. in a designated slot/port. Any external SSD will be severely throttled even if using SATA iii which the OP's laptop won't have,
 
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mathepac

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If the upgrade path is too costly, maybe have a look at Apple Ireland's refurb store for systems with Apple warranties intact.


If you could screenshot your system information and pate it in here maybe we can provide further opinion.

As already highlighted, the two key areas are memory and disk space for routine home/home-office type work.

Click on the "Storage" and "Memory" buttons on your system information window and paste them in here.

4029

4030

4031

The examples above are from my own late 2012 Macmini.
 
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mathepac

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It may change everything as the OP may well be looking at fitting a 2.5" SSD into an internal 3.5" drive bay. This company in the US offers SSD upgrade kits (brackets, tools, hardware, adhesives, instructions, etc) specific to each Apple system. https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/ssd/owc/imac-27-inch/2012

They also offer system-specific memory upgrade kits https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/memory/iMac/2012_27/DDR3L Given the price of memory these days, and the simplicity of fitting memory into your machine, I'd go straight for a full 32GB upgrade, if lack of memory is your problem.

What version of macOS are you running and are your applications up to date?

Shipping, import duties, VAT, etc will, of course, be extra to their advertised prices

Worst case you can use their pricing to keep other suppliers honest :)
 
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Leo

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It may change everything as the OP may well be looking at fitting a 2.5" SSD into an internal 3.5" drive bay.
I'd imagine it's more to do with the data bus options available than where to stick the drive.
 

mathepac

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I'd imagine it's more to do with the data bus options available than where to stick the drive.
Limited internally to the original 6.0 Gbps SATA connection. Externally, USB, Ethernet, and Thunderbolt are options, and while simpler to fit and much cheaper, an external hard-drive will always be slower than an internal SSD.
 

AlbacoreA

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Everymac is what you need here...

Looks like this model.
 

pingin

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198
If the upgrade path is too costly, maybe have a look at Apple Ireland's refurb store for systems with Apple warranties intact.


If you could screenshot your system information and pate it in here maybe we can provide further opinion.

As already highlighted, the two key areas are memory and disk space for routine home/home-office type work.

Click on the "Storage" and "Memory" buttons on your system information window and paste them in here.

View attachment 4029

View attachment 4030

View attachment 4031

The examples above are from my own late 2012 Macmini.
Thanks mathepac. I've been away for a time and didn't see this. Thanks to everyone else too for all the help. Here's what my system looks like.
 

Attachments

mathepac

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Everymac is what you need here...

Looks like this model.
OWC is what you need, all EveryMac does is provide links to what OWC already publishes for their hardware upgrade customers.

And no that is not the model the OP has. To use that upgrade, late 2012 27" iMacs must be factory fitted with either a SSD OR SSHD. Based on the system information posted above, the OP's iMac is fitted with a common or garden HDD and lacks the mother-board slot for the blade upgrade.

Stick with OWC, they're the experts and I've been buying from them (on & off) for a while: Macmini, MacPro & MacBook upgrades over the years, as well as drives, cables, enclosures and misc. bits and pieces. They've never left me in the lurch, even when the problem was my need to attend SpecSavers!!
 

AlbacoreA

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Not trying to pedantic but the OP posted hard drive information AFTER I had posted links to help him identify his mac, and maybe even discourage him from trying it. I assume no one actually read any of those links...

Consequently, EveryMac.com cannot recommend that one upgrade the internal storage themselves, as doing so is difficult and time consuming.
However, for highly skilled individuals, it is quite possible to upgrade the storage, but the available upgrade options vary depending on the system.
Incidentally OWC sponsor Everymac, so its hardly surprising one links to the other.

As first determined by site sponsor Other World Computing, the 21.5-Inch "Late 2013" iMac models do have the connector for a PCIe-based "blade" but subsequent 21.5-Inch models -- like the entry-level iMac "Core i5" 1.4 21.5-Inch (Mid-2014) and the 21.5-Inch "Late 2015" models -- do not have the connector for a PCIe-based "blade" SSD if one is not installed at the time of initial system purchase.
But since the OP has a 27" iMac (assuming he is correct) there is more to it.

or the 27-Inch "Late 2015" Retina/5K iMac models, OWC was first to report that these models have a second PCIe connector (PCIe 2.0 x4 NVMexpress interface) that accommodates the SSD if the system is configured with a "Fusion Drive" by default. A reader kindly shared that the connector is present as well even if the system only is configured with a hard drive at the time of initial system purchase. Consequently, it is possible to add a compatible "blade" SSD to these models later, too.
....the physically larger 27-Inch models use a 3.5" hard drive. All of these 27-Inch models are equipped by default with a "Fusion Drive" and the corresponding small "blade" SSD via a PCIe connector. As first noted by OWC, if the 21.5-Inch models are not equipped with a "Fusion Drive" at the time of system purchase, this secondary storage PCIe connector is not present.
Even if you didn't have a PCIe connector, you can get a regaular SATA SSD to replace a regular hard drive, and even using the old SATA connector its makes a vast difference.

But then since Apple does it best to make things, difficult and expensive to upgrade, and sometimes impossible.
You won't really know till you open it.....

Best thing about a SSD upgrade is that even you can use it on another machine.
 

AlbacoreA

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What ever you do make sure you have your backups done and tested before you do anything else.
 
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