Mac 2019 – 2021 Lease Details

Since 2007, Extension Information Technology (EIT) has supported Mac computers. The computers are leased under a UNC-GA Master Lease agreement between NC State University and Apple.

How will this lease work?

Your offices will again be asked to cover 100% of the lease costs for 2019-2021. EIT handles the lease transaction, configures and delivers the computers, provides continued support and invoices your offices yearly, or as requested, as with the previous lease arrangements. All county extension centers are welcome to participate in the lease, even if they have not participated in the past.

What are the costs?

Specs and estimated costs for a Mac mini, an iMac desktop computer, a 13-inch Macbook Pro, and a 15-inch Macbook Pro are detailed below. The recommendations are for basic configurations that will meet most computing needs. Contact the EIT Help Desk for custom configuration requests.

Use this 2019-2021 Lease Calculator spreadsheet to estimate the costs of your order. Estimates were last revised on February 21, 2018.

Recommended Hardware

Mac Mini (~$1120 with adapter, 3-year AppleCare and MS Office)

2.6 Ghz dual-core Intel Core i5
16 GB memory
256 GB Flash Storage
Intel Iris Graphics

The Mac minis require a monitor, mouse and keyboard. They do not have a DVD drive built into the case. The Superdrive (DVD player/burner) is an external accessory that can be ordered with the Mini at a cost of $79. There will also be third party DVD drives and keyboards available (options and cost to come later). One or two DVD drives per office should be adequate, unless you frequently use CDs or DVDs. We recommend buying Apple Superdrives, rather than leasing these, if they are not used heavily in your office.

iMac (~$1500 with 3-year AppleCare and MS Office)

21.5″ monitor
2.3 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
16GB 2133MHz DDR4
256 GB SSD
Intel Iris Graphics 640
Apple Magic Keyboard and Magic Mouse included

iMacs do not have a built in CD/DVD drive. A DVD drive should be considered.

Two Macbook Pro configurations were included. Most offices order 13 inch laptops and use them with an external monitor, keyboard and mouse in the office. The 15 inch specs are included for those who prefer a larger laptop. The 13 inch and the 15 inch MacBook Pros have the retina display and the faster flash storage. Both the 13 inch and the 15 inch MacBook Pros do not have a built in Superdrive. A DVD drive should be considered.

13 inch Macbook Pro  (~$1800 with multiport adapter, 3-year AppleCare and MS Office)

2.3GHz Dual-core Intel i5, Turbo Boost up to 3.6GHz
16 GB memory
256 GB SSD

15 inch Macbook Pro  (~$2470 with multiport adapter, 3-year AppleCare and MS Office)

2.8 GHz quad-core Intel i7, Turbo Boost up to 3.8GHz
16 GB memory
256 GB flash storage

The exact prices will not be available until after the lease has been processed through Apple Financial. Prices are more likely to decrease as a discount is usually applied.

Optional items

Optional items, including Superdrives, third party DVD drives, video adapters for laptops, Apple keyboards, third party keyboards, Apple mice, laptop bags, and iPads may be included in this lease. These items are included on the Mac Order form. 

Equipment returns

Apple applied residual value into the 2016-2018 lease. Because of that, all equipment leased for calendar years 2016-2018 must be returned when EIT delivers your new equipment. This includes all computers, iPads, cables, mice, keyboards, superdrives — everything but the laptop bags. We will securely wipe the hard drives before equipment is transferred to Apple.

What computers should we order?

The recommended equipment is very similar in processing power and file capacity. If the type of computer (Mac Mini, laptop, iMac) you have now meets your needs, then the new standard configuration for that same type should be adequate.

We recommend that agents and CEDs get 13 inch Macbook Pros. The laptops provide mobility and the efficiency of having all of your files on one computer. The 13 inch Macbook Pro can be connected to an external monitor, full sized keyboard and mouse for comfort and utility while in the office. Some individuals will want the larger 15 inch Macbook Pro for increased screen space outside of the office.

Cost is the main consideration between a Mac Mini and an iMac for desktop equipment. If your monitors need to be replaced during the leasing period, the iMac is a great choice with more computing power than the Mac Mini.

When considering this lease along with your overall IT budget, keep in mind monitors should be replaced every four to five years.

We have received questions about whether or not iPads can replace standard desktop or laptop computers. We do not recommend using an iPad as your only work computer. iPads are wonderful tools, when they serve as additional equipment, but their operating system does not provide the functionality you will see with a laptop or desktop. Estimated iPad prices are included on the order form. Prices include AppleCare, which now covers up to two incidents of accidental damage with a service fee of $49 per incident. Additional monthly charges for cellular connections are the responsibility of the office.

If your existing equipment is limiting for some reason, then consider leasing one of the higher end computers or contact EIT to get an estimate for a custom configuration. You can explore the options available by visiting the Apple Education Store.

Are there warranties?

The computers will be covered by three year AppleCare. EIT computer specialists have all obtained hardware repair certification to significantly reduce the cost of AppleCare. EIT also maintains a limited number of loaners to cover you if there are problems we cannot repair remotely.

When will we receive the equipment?

We plan to order the equipment in late July or early August and start the roll-out in late September. Our goal is to have all the equipment installed by the end of December 2018.

Can we purchase Mac computers outright or do we have to lease the equipment?

For largest discounts and consistent support, we prefer you lease the equipment. If you decide to purchase outright, EIT will help you with the configuration and order the equipment through our office.

Apple offers a standard one year warranty on Mac computers. EIT requires all computers we support to have three year AppleCare. Equipment should be replaced when AppleCare expires after three years.


If you have questions about the configurations or any part of this process, please contact the CES Help Desk by emailing or calling 919-513-7000.

Written By

Photo of Rhonda Conlon, N.C. Cooperative ExtensionRhonda ConlonDirector, Extension Information Technology (919) 515-5893 rhonda_conlon@ncsu.eduExtension Information Technology - NC State University
Page Last Updated: 4 months ago
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