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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

Mac Mini or iMac


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macwannabe
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I've been thinking about making a switch to a mac for awhile now, and I just got a nice raise and thought now might be the time to do it. My main issue is, I just don't know what kind of mac to get.

I love the looks of iMac's, and one could easily be my main pc for years to come. However, I've never used a mac before, and that's alot of cash to lay down. So that brings me to the mini's. They seem like a good solution, I will mainly use it for internet/email/work apps. Are the mini's worth it? If I add what I want to one, it's still going to cost me $1,000.
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dstopsky

 
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I understand your hesitance to lay down a large chunk of cash for a system you're not familiar with. I was in a similar situation less than 2 months ago and decided to go with a mini. While I think the mini is a great system and I love its simplicity and size, it's not quite powerful enough for my needs and I am already looking to sell it and get a G5 iMac. That may not be the case for you, so you should think about what you will use your mac for. In total I spent 1000+ for the 1.42Ghz, 512MB RAM, Airport + Bluetooth, Superdrive, 80GB HDD, 19" Monitor and AppleCare Plan. For about an extra 100 I could've gotten the 17" 2.0Ghz iMac which comes with all of those options and more.

Just remember that this an investment and you should be happy with that investment, but also keep in mind what its use will be for. Hope that helps you with your decision.
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prostuff1

 
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My advice is go to an Apple Store (or some place that carries the computers) and mess around with both. I think if you go mess with the computer you will probably like it enough to just spend the money for the better system!!

The mini is a great starter but the iMac is so much more powerfull, and like dstopsky said the iMac comes with all the extras instead of adding them.
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WhyJay?

 
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I switched without knowing much about Mac computers. I went with the basic Mini for $499+tax at an Apple store. So far I've yet to regret switching. I sold mypc and made the mini my only computer. It does very nicely for basic tasks, and then some. With the mini I've edited video, created DVD's, and composed music.

I purchased it in February. Since then I've added third party ram from OfficeMax, and a SuperDrive from Other World Computing @ www.macsales.com.

My advice would be, if you're curious enough, to get what you can afford, i.e. the Mini, and see how well you like the environment.
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macwannabe
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My other hesitency is the fact that the PowerPC architecture is going to be obsolete in a year or so. If I get a mac, it will surely be a good 4-5 year investment in that pc, and the fact that they will start having new hardware scares me off a little bit.
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mangoSharingan
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I would get the Mac Mini first since it's a good system for those who want to experience a Mac system first time. It doesn't take up a lot of space and you can just use your existing monitor. I would suggest that you visit an Apple store to experience both first. Do be sure that you only just want it for internet/e-mail/work though because there are quite a few people who buy a Mac Mini/iBook for that and then either want to play games as well or just feel it ain't powerful enough. Some may end up getting a more powerful system like the PowerMac/iMac as their first Mac but then realise a Mac isn't what they want.
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macwannabe
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Is there any reason to be concerned about the Intel switch next year? Is it worth waiting, or will it not be a big deal? I'd hate to make this investment and then regret it in one year.
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inflexion

 
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dont worry about the intel switch apple will support the PPC platform for many years and 5 years time im sure that apple will still support it
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mynameis

 
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Go iMac, unless you have a really nice LCD that you want to use with the mini. The newer iMacs come with so much stuff, it is an awesome deal. How did you spec out the mini to get it to $1000?
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dstopsky

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mynameis
How did you spec out the mini to get it to $1000?
That's not that hard to do:

1.42Ghz mini + 80GB HDD + 512MB RAM + Airport + Bluetooth + Superdrive + AppleCare = $1000 (This doesn't include monitor, mouse or keyboard).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by macwannabe
My other hesitency is the fact that the PowerPC architecture is going to be obsolete in a year or so. If I get a mac, it will surely be a good 4-5 year investment in that pc, and the fact that they will start having new hardware scares me off a little bit.
They will continue to sell binaries that work on both the ppc and x86... If you get the iMac you will be happy with it for a long time to come. I plan to buy a G5 right before the switch over so that I will have it to last me though the first couple redesigns of the intel chip computers so by the time I get an itel chip computer all the bugs will be worked out,with software and hardware, I would go with the iMac if I was in your possition. Think you could always sell it if you don't like it, alot of people are willing to buy used macs these days.

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