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The End of Mac OS X Era

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October 1, 2012 10:16:26 AM

I discovered bliss in November 2010, on the 21st to be exact. See, that's the day something truly wonderful and life-changing happened. It was a sunny day as I recall...a beautiful day. I was so excited that I couldn't sleep the night before, tossing, turning, ...levitating in my bed. This would be the day that changed history as I knew it. This would be the day that... ...the leviathan arrived. A 2010 Xeon 3.3Ghz 6-core nasty-fast-nasty Mac Pro. She arrived. I cried happy tears [I think I did anyways]. She would be used to virtualize the world...running multiple networked virtual machines simultaneously...effortlessly, undeterred, as I simultaneously encoded video and miixed dance tracks. She would change the world as I knew it...and she did. Nothing slows her down.

2 years have passed and I've upgraded her, RAID0 Vertex2 128GB SSDs and RAID0 600GB Velociprators, 24GB of RAM, dual 27" Cinema Displays, LightScribe burner. She's raw. What'd she cost? Errr...let's not talk about that...but less than a new Corvette I assure you. ..but I realize I no longer really have a need for such planet-destroying, black-hole vaporizing power. My MacBook Pro now quite easily fulfilling my needs as I spend more time with it and even more mobile technologies {SGS3, Transformer Infinity+dock}.

...and so, the unthinkable will happen...

She will be sold.

So, in your honest opinion when she's put up on the auction table what's a fair price for such a machine in pristine condition? I know I cannot get anywhere near what she costs, but don't want to be totally ripped-off either. Again, her specs are:

2010 3.3Ghz Hexa-core Mac Pro
Mac OS X Mountain Lion
24GB OWC ECC RAM
AMD HD5870 {1GB RAM}
2 x 128GB Vertex2 SSDs in RAID 0
2 x 600GB WD VelociRaptors in RAID 0
2 x 2011 27" Apple Cinema Displays
1-year of Apple Care remaining
She's in very clean condition, I've blown her with compressed air EVERY week since she was purchased to ensure no overly bold dust got too comfortable.

No, I'm not soliciting offers here, I just want to get some honest opinions about what I should charge. ...don't want to over or under charge. Your thoughts, as always, are much appreciated.

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October 1, 2012 10:36:26 AM

I'd say $2500 minimum. Lol.
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October 1, 2012 10:44:14 AM

samuelspark said:
I'd say $2500 minimum. Lol.

That's funny...that's what I'd thought too...but am hoping I might get 3K
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October 1, 2012 11:10:09 AM

I really wish it wasn't anything to do with Apple.... and we could have really given you the perfect price for 'Her'.....
But the description itself would be worth the money I guess....
Although you can't think of the SGS3 in comparison to this..... but what the heck, it's just a part of the whole ensemble right.... 2.5K is really what strikes the head.... but for that kinda dough I think most people will go for a new rig....
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October 1, 2012 11:31:57 AM

That's a good perspective but you can't match what I'm selling if you buy a new rig for $2,500. This is not a machine with gaming in mind {though she can game fine} and the LED displays and other upgrades are top notch (IMHO). She's not quite a pro workstation (because of graphics) she has more in common with that side than the gaming side. The buyer would be someone looking, specifically, for a Mac Pro but can't afford those specs new.
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October 1, 2012 11:54:39 AM

Those two displays alone should still be worth two grand.

After all it doesn't really matter what something is worth. It only matters if you find someone to pay for it.

Nice try of advertising it here, without officially offering it. ;) 
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October 1, 2012 12:07:31 PM

No no, to be clear I'm not advertising it here. 1. Surely that's against THG TOS and 2. That'd be innapropriate (seriously...I'm not a kid :) 
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October 1, 2012 2:01:51 PM

Hey there,

Because Mac Pro prices exist sort of in a vacuum, I'd suggest you use the Mac store as a comparison point. There are several 2010 models listed (although I don't think I see your exact one). They seem to support the $2500-3k range. Although you probably aren't as reputable as Apple ... so might need to knock a few hundred off whatever Apple could sell it for.

http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/specialdeals/mac/...

Look it up on ebay too.
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October 1, 2012 2:36:02 PM

deadlockedworld said:
Hey there,

Because Mac Pro prices exist sort of in a vacuum, I'd suggest you use the Mac store as a comparison point. There are several 2010 models listed (although I don't think I see your exact one). They seem to support the $2500-3k range. Although you probably aren't as reputable as Apple ... so might need to knock a few hundred off whatever Apple could sell it for.

http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/specialdeals/mac/...

Look it up on ebay too.


That's great advice. ...and since the machine is only recently one generation behind I'll advise the prospective buyer to shop around. ...at $2500-$3000, though, I'd be giving it away...and I hope they realize it. The machine, as configured cost me just over $10K. I'm not looking to get even half of that because I don't think that'd be realistic. However, I will take your advice and do some more research. As WhatsThatNoise insightfully stated, its not what I paid for it or what's worth...its what someone is willing to pay.
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October 1, 2012 3:44:41 PM

Yep, the issue of buying a used system (especially an expensive used system) puts all of the risk on the buyer. Finding a buyer for such a purchase can be a challenge.

I suggest you take a look at Craigslist (for your area as well). Several months ago, I did some shopping around for a Mac Pro for my daughter (built her an editing rig for college graduation). Looked at Craigslist, eBay, new, refurbs, etc. When it can to CL, the issue was finding an acceptable price point to assume the risk of plunking down a bunch of money on a system that could potentially die the next day.

Also, CL also offers the advantage for finding a local buyer. Shipping such a system is VERY expensive and also runs the risk of damge.

What geographic market are you in?
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October 1, 2012 4:00:58 PM

sell that bitch for 2500 and build a awesome pc yourself
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October 1, 2012 4:15:19 PM

I am so glad I started the thread on this. Excellent points. So I need to offer some type of quality guarantee in writing. How long should such a guarantee be good for? I'm in the Washington DC area.
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October 1, 2012 4:19:38 PM

Honestly, I wouldn't go more than 30 days. You have no idea how well the new owner will take care of the Mac Pro.

You should be able to unload fast in the DC area. I suggest you list for $3000 to allow for some negotiating space.
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October 1, 2012 4:35:01 PM

halcyon said:
I am so glad I started the thread on this. Excellent points. So I need to offer some type of quality guarantee in writing. How long should such a guarantee be good for? I'm in the Washington DC area.



Craigslist is a good idea for a local buyer, and the DC market is certainly stronger than most for this -- however ... most people that can afford this probably do not regularly surf craigslist. Worth a try though.

As weird as this is ... some networking might be in order. Maybe reach out to some local stores (I doubt Apple/Microcenter will take it - but some of the small computer shops that sell refurbished macs might consider it). Another idea might be to reach out and ask for ideas from any local friends that are graphic designers (the high-end apple community, if you will).

Actually .. the Apple staff at Microcenter might have some ideas, and they are probably less restricted in what they can say.
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October 1, 2012 4:45:04 PM

Not counting the displays, a pc owner would expect to pay ~$1000 for a used PC with those specs. But being that it's an apple product, you'll find some foolish apple fan willing to pay twice that just for the computer, without the displays. The Apple displays are a special case.
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October 1, 2012 4:46:09 PM

how desperate you are to sell should be taken into consideration. if you need the money now, low ball it. if you are willing to start high and lower the price over time, you may make a few more dollars.
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October 1, 2012 4:58:06 PM

I think you're problem is marketing. I'm no expert, but it seems the market for this machine is relatively small, so your challenge is to find out how to reach potential buyers, those who would want a machine like this. As mentioned, e-bay and Craigslist are two places to start.
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October 1, 2012 6:54:33 PM

Thanks again for the tips!
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October 1, 2012 8:04:00 PM

Hi :) 

I own computer shops in the UK so may be different to US......

But we sell reconditioned machines....

The rule we go by is...

You take the total new cost of the machine and you start your selling at 50% of that as its second hand....

To be honest , I seriously doubt you will get anywhere near $2500.... as a new machine WITH A GUARANTEE can be bought for that...

But good luck anyway, I will be interested to hear what you do get for it...

All the best Brett :) 
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October 1, 2012 8:06:31 PM

No problem! Let us know how it goes.
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October 1, 2012 8:11:36 PM

"1-year of Apple Care remaining"

This is actually worth something, when selling a used Apple product. ^^

These things aren't as easy to fix by oneself on the run as a PC (replacing just some part(s) of it, ...).
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October 1, 2012 8:12:41 PM

whatsthatnoise said:
"1-year of Apple Care remaining"

This is actually worth something, when selling a used Apple product. ^^

These things aren't as easy to fix by oneself on the run as a PC (replacing just some part(s) of it, ...).



Hi :) 

Is that Transferable to a second user though ?

All the best Brett :) 
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October 1, 2012 8:15:24 PM

It is. But one has to contact Apple to transfer ownership.
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October 1, 2012 9:56:21 PM

This popped up for me again and I want to note that the above estimates should be for the Pro - I would consider selling the displays separately.

They shouldn't have depreciated too much at all (unlike the Mac) --because the buyer can look at them to determine condition.
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October 1, 2012 10:05:53 PM

Yes, there is indeed over 1 year of Apples Care on the system ..so that protects the buyer a bit, I'll make sure to emphasize that. Good bit about the displays. There's also 2.4 years of Apple Care left on the displays. These warranties are transferable.
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October 1, 2012 11:20:04 PM

As beastly of a system as that is, the people in the market for such a machine typically have the funds to purchase the system new. However, it is a Mac and most people are uber-stupid-must-have when it comes to anything with an Apple logo on it.

I would say the just system itself would sell for around $1500 - $1700 in my area.

The displays would probably bring about $400 - $550 each.

I would probably start pricing around $2700 and see what happens. Especially if you aren't hurting for the money.

Regardless, for that price range it is one of hell of a machine.
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October 1, 2012 11:31:49 PM

halcyon said:
I am so glad I started the thread on this. Excellent points. So I need to offer some type of quality guarantee in writing. How long should such a guarantee be good for? I'm in the Washington DC area.


I would highly recommend against offering a warranty yourself. You are not an insurance company and warranties are insurance contracts. You could open yourself up to liability.

If you really want to offer a warranty, find a company that offers warranties on such things and pay for the premium.
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October 1, 2012 11:48:52 PM

bliq said:
I would highly recommend against offering a warranty yourself. You are not an insurance company and warranties are insurance contracts. You could open yourself up to liability.

If you really want to offer a warranty, find a company that offers warranties on such things and pay for the premium.

Thanks. Yeah, I think the Apple Care should be enough to protect the buyer. I'll call and find out everything that I'd need to do to transfer it.
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October 1, 2012 11:53:02 PM

ish416 said:
As beastly of a system as that is, the people in the market for such a machine typically have the funds to purchase the system new. However, it is a Mac and most people are uber-stupid-must-have when it comes to anything with an Apple logo on it.

I would say the just system itself would sell for around $1500 - $1700 in my area.

The displays would probably bring about $400 - $550 each.

I would probably start pricing around $2700 and see what happens. Especially if you aren't hurting for the money.

Regardless, for that price range it is one of hell of a machine.


It's getting tiring to hear about how "stupid" apple people are. Wanna know what's stupid? It's the idea that most people (kids?) here have that those who buy $3000 and up computers are enthusiasts. They are not. They generally care very little about gaming on their $3000+ computer. Even less about benchmarks or tinkering. People who buy computers that cost more than about $3000 in general, usually buy them because they are in a business where time is money and using the most efficient tools for the job equate to greater earnings. Being likely self-employed professionals, they are also keenly aware of the idea of value for the dollar for business expenditures.

So, I'm sure there are professional level graphic artists or photographers just starting out, or newly expanding their small business that would be interested in a capable Mac Pro such as this. You're not likely to sell it to an enthusiast, you are more likely to sell it to a professional graphic artist or photographer using a 2008 Mac Pro and is ready for an upgrade and knows they can write off at least a portion of the purchase as a business expense. At $2500, you could get the latest base model Mac Pro, or this one. The buyer will need to decide if the (hopefully) better specs make up for lack of factory warranty, though the AppleCare is certainly going to be a huge plus in this respect. Can it be renewed? Because if it's cost effective, maybe offer it at $3000, and get another year of applecare or something. you may still just net $2500, but it gives buyer peace of mind and that's a strong selling point too. Craigslist is probably a great way to meet someone in this position but also forums and professional organizations for the graphic artist/creative arts fields might be good too. Also photography organizations, and especially commercial photography and wedding photography trade organizations. They might have a marketplace where they buy and sell used camera equipment and you could advertise on there also.

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October 2, 2012 2:04:27 AM

bliq said:
It's getting tiring to hear about how "stupid" apple people are.


+1 Its clearly an inferiority complex of some kind, but even I'm surprised at how visceral the common reaction is. How people choose to spend their money is their business, and it's the mark of an immature mind not to respect that. Apple doesn't sell price/performance, they sell a reliable "package of service." It's not the right fit for my usage, but for many users (including my wife) it is actually the better choice.
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October 2, 2012 2:09:21 AM

halcyon said:
I discovered bliss in November 2010, on the 21st to be exact. See, that's the day something truly wonderful and life-changing happened. It was a sunny day as I recall...a beautiful day. I was so excited that I couldn't sleep the night before, tossing, turning, ...levitating in my bed. This would be the day that changed history as I knew it. This would be the day that... ...the leviathan arrived. A 2010 Xeon 3.3Ghz 6-core nasty-fast-nasty Mac Pro. She arrived. I cried happy tears [I think I did anyways]. She would be used to virtualize the world...running multiple networked virtual machines simultaneously...effortlessly, undeterred, as I simultaneously encoded video and miixed dance tracks. She would change the world as I knew it...and she did. Nothing slows her down.

2 years have passed and I've upgraded her, RAID0 Vertex2 128GB SSDs and RAID0 600GB Velociprators, 24GB of RAM, dual 27" Cinema Displays, LightScribe burner. She's raw. What'd she cost? Errr...let's not talk about that...but less than a new Corvette I assure you. ..but I realize I no longer really have a need for such planet-destroying, black-hole vaporizing power. My MacBook Pro now quite easily fulfilling my needs as I spend more time with it and even more mobile technologies {SGS3, Transformer Infinity+dock}.

...and so, the unthinkable will happen...

She will be sold.

So, in your honest opinion when she's put up on the auction table what's a fair price for such a machine in pristine condition? I know I cannot get anywhere near what she costs, but don't want to be totally ripped-off either. Again, her specs are:

2010 3.3Ghz Hexa-core Mac Pro
Mac OS X Mountain Lion
24GB OWC ECC RAM
AMD HD5870 {1GB RAM}
2 x 128GB Vertex2 SSDs in RAID 0
2 x 600GB WD VelociRaptors in RAID 0
2 x 2011 27" Apple Cinema Displays
1-year of Apple Care remaining
She's in very clean condition, I've blown her with compressed air EVERY week since she was purchased to ensure no overly bold dust got too comfortable.

No, I'm not soliciting offers here, I just want to get some honest opinions about what I should charge. ...don't want to over or under charge. Your thoughts, as always, are much appreciated.
About $2500-3000 at least what you have invested in it.
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October 2, 2012 8:11:57 AM

Or.... as we usually do is sell each part individually....
That usually finds better prices and you can manage to reach a bigger market.
It may be a little bit more time consuming but just check sites which have these personals..... "looking for ...." kind of ads.... there you'll really get more than what you might expect.
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October 2, 2012 9:39:46 AM

You guys have been totally awesome, thanks again for all the excellent advice.
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October 2, 2012 2:51:07 PM

Best answer selected by halcyon.
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