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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?" :)

I'm getting a mac...and have questions


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Hickeroar

 
Member Since: May 30, 2007
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I wouldn't go so far as to call myself a total "switcher." I'm a bit of a hardcore gamer and have a high-end gaming PC. For THAT specific purpose, I enjoy the ability to upgrade any hardware component any way I want as new things come out or new software requires greater specs. I highly doubt I'll ever completely leave PCs behind. However:


I just started a new Development/Programming job and everyone in the company is using macs and have gotten me interested. I've done my research and found that they're really only slightly more expensive than their comperable PCs and not the "2x" or whatever figure non-mac people generally give out. Naturally a Unix based OS is always a great thing as well.


I've just been given a (slightly older, but never used, 1.5ghz core solo) Mac Mini from "HQ" and it should be here within the week. I've gone out today and grabbed an apple keyboard since I'll be needing that (I wanted the mac buttons). I've got a mouse to use. In the work place, I'm all about whatever will do the job best for me. A mac, in this case, does because it will allow me to avoid some of the headaches I've already encountered trying to exist with a PC in a Mac workplace... I'm also not opposed to using a mac for general, non-work-related computing outside of my aforementioned gaming hobby. There's more than enough software out there for them now...


Assuming all goes well, and I expect it to, I've been offered a laptop as a college graduation present from my father-in-law at the end of the summer, and I'll go with a macbook (maybe pro depending on his price range).


As far as the mini goes, I'm curious how "upgradable" these machines are, if at all. I know the one I'm getting uses the Core Solo processor, so is it possible to upgrade the CPU by ones self to something like a Core Duo or Core 2 Duo? (my gaming pc's motherboard, for instance, accepts Core Solo, Core Duo, Core 2 Duo, and Core 2 Quad CPUs) If so, how does that affect the warranty? It's only got 512MB of ram, so do I have to use ram bought from apple if I want to upgrade it, or are there some brands out there that are known to work well with this hardware that I can buy from newegg.com or something?


Thanks for any help or comments!
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Kash

 
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I'm not sure how upgrading a Mac Mini affects the warranty, but I do know that it's a total pain to open up. Though I would guess that upgrading the processor, if possible, would void the warranty.

Now the laptops are a different story in regard to warranty. The Macbooks can have their memory and hard drives upgraded without a problem. The Macbook Pros can have their RAM upgraded. Upgrading the hard drive on the MBP requires a lot more work, and like I said before, a voiding of the warranty. Then again, the Macbook Pros come with some of the largest notebook hard drives available.

Macs essentially use PC hardware now, so you can definitely get your upgrade parts from places like Newegg. In fact, I bought a 2x1GB set from Newegg for my Macbook and it worked like a charm, as it has for the several others who have followed my advice of buying from Newegg.


June 2007
July 2009
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Hickeroar

 
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Thanks for the info. I'm not really interested in manually upgrading anything in any laptop I get, other than maybe the ram down the road. I'll attempt to get that as close to what I want as I can...

Mainly I'm just interesting in the upgradability of the mac mini. I'll almost certainly upgrade to at least 1gb, probably 2gb of ram. Not really sure about the CPU. I'll likely just leave that alone, but its food for thought anyway...
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bmcgonag

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hickeroar View Post
Thanks for the info. I'm not really interested in manually upgrading anything in any laptop I get, other than maybe the ram down the road. I'll attempt to get that as close to what I want as I can...

Mainly I'm just interesting in the upgradability of the mac mini. I'll almost certainly upgrade to at least 1gb, probably 2gb of ram. Not really sure about the CPU. I'll likely just leave that alone, but its food for thought anyway...
if you just google "upgrade mac-mini core solo" You'll find a ton of How to's on doing this. from memory to hard-drive, even upgrading from core solo to core duo. If there is no warranty left, go for it, if there is a warranty, might want to wait til that expires, then do a nice big upgrade.

Brian
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smurfy

 
Member Since: Apr 19, 2007
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The only totally upgradable Mac is the Mac Pro, which is just as upgradable as any PC you'll know.
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Hickeroar

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmcgonag View Post
if you just google "upgrade mac-mini core solo" You'll find a ton of How to's on doing this. from memory to hard-drive, even upgrading from core solo to core duo. If there is no warranty left, go for it, if there is a warranty, might want to wait til that expires, then do a nice big upgrade.

Brian
Awesome, thanks :-D
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Hickeroar

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smurfy View Post
The only totally upgradable Mac is the Mac Pro, which is just as upgradable as any PC you'll know.
That's very relative. If your definition of upgrade refers to certain "allowed" components, then yes. If you want to upgrade/change out the motherboard with one of your own choosing, no. :-P
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