What does it Mean if your Mac is Vintage?

What exactly is a "vintage" Mac?

Because technology is always advancing, and that advancement is moving at an accelerated rate, there is no laptop or desktop computer that can last forever. Every piece of tech comes with a limited amount of usability. Even if the hardware continues to work for many years, the most recent software will eventually no longer be compatible with that hardware.

Macs also come with a service threshold, as do most devices like laptops, desktops, or phones. That means that after so many years, the ARSs (Apple Retail Stores) and AASPs (Apple Authorized Service Providers) will no longer have the parts to service that product as they move forward with more current technology.

Products can be considered either vintage or obsolete depending on their age, where they were purchased, and when they were last distributed. In this quick guide, I demystify the confusion about what a "vintage" Mac really is and what it means for vintage Mac owners.

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Because Macs are eligible for service for up to 5 years after distribution, and obsolete Macs are Macs that have no longer been distributed for 7 years, a vintage Mac is often somewhat of a mystery. However, a vintage Mac, according to Apple, hasn't been distributed between 5 and 7 years.

Vintage products, while still more difficult for an ARS or AASP to repair, sometimes having to order old parts, can still technically be repaired because parts are still available for repair.

You can find Apple's list of vintage products on