Looks like my college is having a used computer sale.

They have a lot of PCs and such available, mostly older Dell Optiplex GX260 Minitowers, but they’re also selling some older Macs. I’m tempted to pick one up as it seems reasonably cheap. Here’s the most expensive one they’re selling:

iMac G4
800MHz processors
60 GB Hard drive
512 MB Ram
Superdrive
OS X

They’re asking $75 for ‘em. Is it worth it? There’s also the following:

EMac G4
1 GHz
512mb
20 GB Hard Drive
Combo Drive
OS X
Monitor is part of the system.

It’s going for $50. Which seems odd considering it’s a faster processor, but then I’ve never heard of an EMac.

[Update:] OK the one I’m really thinking about now is:

Mac G4 Tower
867MHz processors
40 GB Hard drive
512 MB Ram
DVD/CDRW
Zip drive
OS X
CRT Monitor

Going for $70.

13 thoughts on “Looks like my college is having a used computer sale.

  1. The eMac was a Mac designed for the education market. I guess the reason it’s cheaper is that it has a CRT screen (It has a similar all-in-one design to the original iMac, but with a flat screen CRT). I’d go with the Power Mac G4. You’ll be able to upgrade it. And I think $70 is a great deal. Even though it’s older, it can run most current OS X software, even more if you upgrade to Leopard (though the upgrade will be more than the computer).

  2. I don’t know what your plans are for an old Mac, but if you just want to play around with OS X any one of them would do fine- the price is right, and the great thing about the G4’s is that they can still run OS 9 and Squirrel Kombat.

  3. All three are well priced. If that PowerMac is a Dual 867, its a very good deal. If its a single 867, $70 is still $25 cheaper than what I could sell it for.

    The eMac has a 17” flat CRT while the iMac G4 has either a 15 or 17” LCD. The eMac is a better deal but it should not have a 20GB drive as they were sold with 40/60/80GB options.

    The eMac and PowerMac can run Leopard, Apples newest OS, but the iMac can’t (867mhz min. CPU speed required).

    Wait a minute, Les is seriously considering a Mac? Whats the catch?

  4. No catch, Moloch, it’s just a good deal and I’ve found that the more computers you’re familiar with the more opportunities for work you can take advantage of. I’ve always said that my biggest problem with the Macs wasn’t that they were inferior in some way or that the OS wasn’t any good, but that Apple charges a premium for the hardware that isn’t justified by what you get. I won’t spend a couple of grand for a Mac Tower, but I will spend $70 for one. And, yeah, after looking closer at what’s offered I’m going to pick up the Mac G4 Tower. It does appear these machines are dual processor.

    I’ve not used a Mac much since the days of System 7 when I was a Desktop Publishing Coordinator for Kinkos. I got quite familiar with Macs during that period, but it’s been almost 20 years and three OSes since then so I figure it’s time to reacquaint myself. Maybe I’ll even become a convert, though I doubt it.

  5. Sounds like a good deal at those prices. I’d just warn you that their lifetime, as far as support is concerned, is limited. That’s probably part of the reason that they are being sold at such a low price. I have a PowerMac G4 that I can’t upgrade to the current version of Mac OS X because it doesn’t meet the minimum requirements. At some point, probably when the mext version of Mac OS X is released, it will become an orphan. Most companies seem to support the current and previous versions of Mac OS X.

  6. Sounds like a good deal at those prices. I’d just warn you that their lifetime, as far as support is concerned, is limited. That’s probably part of the reason that they are being sold at such a low price.

    Low price? Try getting $75 for a 5 year old PC. Even better, try getting that 5 year old PC to run Vista.

    It does appear these machines are dual processor.

    Only the tower could be a dual. The eMac was never offered a dual and the iMac didn’t get two until the intel switch in 2006.

  7. I would also recommend the G4. I know at work we had problems getting Leopard running on a few G4 so make sure you check hardware requirements before buying Leopard.

  8. Almost worth buying one just to see what’s there

    If you want to hone your forensics skills, just buy used disks. It’s even juicier if you can pick up a used server.

  9. The IT staff at the school seems to be pretty well on the ball so I’m sure the disks have at least had a cursory wipe done on them. They’re including some form of OS X with the machines so even if I can’t run the latest and greatest I can still get a feel for it.

    Few things are more amusing than purchasing old hard drives and seeing what’s still on them, though. There’s some very naughty people out there.

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