New Mac Minis Released. Time to Buy

Discussion in 'Public Game Developers Forum' started by arn, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. arn

    arn Administrator
    Staff Member

    Apr 19, 2008
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    Anyone who was wondering about the Mac Mini should consider buying it now. It just got updated.

    It's not the highest specs, but the new release has some nice upgrades.

    http://www.apple.com/macmini/

    arn
     
  2. Diablohead

    Diablohead Well-Known Member

    Jan 19, 2009
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    Freelancer, PC game developer
    #2 Diablohead, Mar 3, 2009
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2009
    5 usb slots, now that is good :)

    Ah snap, it's also £110 more expensive now, use to be £389 for the entry package and now they are asking £499!
     
  3. yourofl10

    yourofl10 Well-Known Member

    Dec 11, 2008
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    Yes very good
     
  4. Zwilnik

    Zwilnik Well-Known Member

    Yup. Same with the new iMacs too. Apple's re-adjusted their prices to cover the falling £. (prices are roughly equivalent of $-£ exchange + VAT).

    The good news is that the entry level Mac mini is now practically the same as the more expensive one in primary features (superdrive as standard) but just has a smaller drive + memory. £30 at Crucial.com and a decent external FW 800 drive and you've got very solid server/devkit/media player.
     
  5. Diablohead

    Diablohead Well-Known Member

    Jan 19, 2009
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    Yeah you are easily getting your money's worth with the new mini, better clock speeds and extra usb just to name a few benefits, another 6 weeks yet before I order my own so I will be looking out for what other users say about the new mini.

    I would buy a laptop for a few hundred more but i'm extremely tight for cash :D
     
  6. RetroGuy

    RetroGuy Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2008
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    Are these actually for sale right now? I know they were announced today. I've been holding off on a Mini purchase for exactly this reason and I'm very pleased with the upgrades for the same $600 as before.
     
  7. arn

    arn Administrator
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    Apr 19, 2008
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  8. RetroGuy

    RetroGuy Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2008
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    Thanks arn.

    Does anyone know how easy it is to upgrade RAM in a mini by yourself, or does that void any warranty? I see from the store I can spend $50 to upgrade from 1gb to 2gb. I'm a PC user and I'm used to buying memory much cheaper.
     
  9. Diablohead

    Diablohead Well-Known Member

    Jan 19, 2009
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    Usually when you open a case you lose all warranty, so up to you.
     
  10. Zwilnik

    Zwilnik Well-Known Member

    The official word from Apple (according to MacWorld here http://www.macworld.com/article/42237/2005/01/macminiinside.html ) is that the memory in the Mac mini *is* user upgradeable unless you break something while doing it.

    Basically that means you have to follow the online guides and have the right tools or you'll mess the case up, but it's fairly easy to do once the case is open.

    *Don't* just buy cheap PC memory for it though. Apple's memory spec is a lot tougher than generic PCs and Macs actually check all sorts of speed and compatibility bits on their memory before letting them work, so generic PC memory has a very good chance of just not working.

    Crucial.com is a very good source of memory that's guaranteed to be Mac compatible and they're nice and cheap. (Apple's memory prices are aimed at people who don't want to mess about and just have their new Mac arrive already upgraded for them).
     
  11. RetroGuy

    RetroGuy Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2008
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    Thanks Zwilnik, very helpful. Yeah there comes a point where it's not worth the hassle. Saving $30? Maybe. Saving $10? Not worth it, might as well buy it installed.
     
  12. Midnight Status

    Midnight Status Well-Known Member

    Dec 12, 2008
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    I just bought a new Mac Mini in November to replace my old PPC unit. The only thing I could use with the new model is the ability to compute hardware occlusion culling. The Intel 950 chipset doesn't allow for it which is a real bummer. As it is though I think we got good performance out of SkylineBlade without it.
     
  13. WellSpentYouth

    WellSpentYouth Well-Known Member

    Jan 11, 2009
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    App Tech Studios, USA
    A new mac pro and iMac also!! I guess I'll have to get a new computer :p
     
  14. lazypeon

    lazypeon Well-Known Member

    I bought the 1GB Mini a few months ago for iPhone dev. A few things:

    1. It does just fine for iPhone dev; I haven't run into any issues
    2. 1gb seems to be enough RAM
    3. If you think you might want more than 1GB, buy it installed.

    Seriously, installing RAM in the Mini is not for the faint of heart. I'm by no means experienced installing hardware upgrades, but usually changing RAM in a Mini is not like changing the RAM in a tower or a laptop. Just do a Google search for 'mac mini ram install' and you'll see what I mean. You have to pry the thing open, and then take a bunch of stuff out before you can access the RAM.

    Like I said, I think 1gb is fine for iPhond dev but if you think you want more, just buy it installed (or at least view the tutorials to see what you're in for).
     
  15. dannys95

    dannys95 Well-Known Member

    Sep 29, 2008
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    I could get this new one.........................but I'm almost done saving for my MB.............what do you think? I think I'll get my MB. :)
     
  16. HardcoreEricXXX

    HardcoreEricXXX Well-Known Member

    Nov 29, 2008
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    Yay! My bedroom's entertainment system is complete. PC in the living room, mac+360 in the bedroom.
     
  17. lithiastudios

    lithiastudios Well-Known Member

    Jan 9, 2009
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    Yeah, I have built my own PCs several times in the past over the years, and once I saw the instructions for installing memory in a Mini, I decided against it. With how tiny and cramped the case is, there's not much room for error when putting everything back in.

    Looking back, I'd probably buy more memory installed, even though they charge you more than it's worth.
     
  18. Think couple years ago when I got my mac mini ppc one it only had 512MB and they were asking insane amount for more memory so I plopped in 1GB of RAM and it wasn't too hard with the right tools. I can't play wow on it anymore though it's so sluggish since wothlk and plus the new patch needs ton of hd space and I only got like 5GB free so it refuses to install.

    Can't believe it took them this long to refresh their mac minis I couldn't recommend them for the past couple of years with their crappy video now I can't finally recommend them once more.
     
  19. TKO

    TKO Well-Known Member

    Jan 23, 2009
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    #19 TKO, Mar 6, 2009
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2009
    Wohoo! I'm so glad it's out. Graphics chipset is *just* good enough now that I'm not so put-off by it. But as for upgrading RAM or anything else, I can only say DON'T DO IT! ..you have to *pry* the case open with a putty-knife (or similar but more expensive tool), and it's a bit of a mess of components inside. I got my old PPC mini done officially and the shop guys hated me for making them do it :) ..damn modem-sound stopped being reliable after too. (Think there was a loose connection, but didn't want it pried open again.)

    For the price, I think just get it with the upgraded RAM. The cost is okay.
     
  20. RetroGuy

    RetroGuy Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2008
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    Thanks for the tips guys. I think I may as well get the 2GB. Better to have the memory and not need it, than need it and not have it, especially considering the hassle it sounds like to deal with it post-purchase.
     

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