Revamp old iMac with mini?

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I've got a late 2009 iMac... still loving the screen, but it's starting to show its age a bit speed-wise. I was thinking of updating it by using it as a display for a mac mini, since I can also use the existing keyboard and mouse as well.

It seems like it's such an easy solution that I must be missing something... Am I?
 
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It depends on your actual late 2009 iMac model and you might just make it, but have a look and read here, and it's referred to as Target Display Mode:
https://support.apple.com/en-ca/HT3924

But even if you can, that would make that iMac a pretty expensive display if it was to only be used as such, and be aware that you don't end up with a new mini that may end up having less capabilities that your existing iMac.

Have you considered an even cheaper route and increase the iMac's RAM memory and/or add a SSD?? Might be worth considering. ;)
 
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Have you considered an even cheaper route and increase the iMac's RAM memory and/or add a SSD?? Might be worth considering. ;)

Hi, thanks for the feedback! I've got 8Gb in it already... I had originally considered putting an SSD in as well, but from doing a few searches it seemed like it would be more work than it was worth and maybe above my skill level.

I figure it's almost 6 years old so I'm probably on borrowed time with the HD. Since the screen still looks awesome, I was looking for options to keep using it. I'm a med student on a budget, so I was trying to balance a system refresh while keeping me in ramen noodles. I see that there are still quad core minis for ~$850 out there, that's what I was leaning towards.
 
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I'm not a mini fan, and often leery of the "new and improved" Mac models and the later post-2012 models are a prime example.

And I just love the "quoted" Jony Ive poster's comment:

""We've designed the new Mac Mini to be slower, so you can enjoy your content better. These days, we are in such a hurry that we fail to slowdown and appreciate what we're seeing. The new Mac Mini is about making the personal computer...personal again." - Jony
Late 2014 Mac Mini Benchmarks Indicate Decreased Multi-Core Performance - Mac Rumors

;D :Smirk:

I guess one could add several others like this as well: :(
http://www.tekrevue.com/new-mac-mini/
 
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Your Mac's Specs
2012 Mac Mini 2.5 ghz i5, 16 GB RAM, 960 GB SSD + 500 GB HDD (5200 RPM)
Well before the 2014 Minis came along, it was an excellent product line. I've been a big fan of them since they were introduced, even if we had to take a putty knife to them in the old days LOL

That 2012 Quad-Core Mini is still a pretty great unit! RAM is super easy to replace, storage is a bit trickier but there are some good videos about pulling the guts out to do it.

If you've got Target Display Mode on your iMac you can do this, as others have mentioned. If you're not a real big tech-head post your About This Mac info and we can give you some advice on whether the hardware is a good step up or not. Depending on your model, a RAM upgrade and a clean install of the OS might be a really cheap and cost-efficient method of getting you back up to top speed.
 
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Well before the 2014 Minis came along, it was an excellent product line. I've been a big fan of them since they were introduced, even if we had to take a putty knife to them in the old days LOL

That 2012 Quad-Core Mini is still a pretty great unit! RAM is super easy to replace, storage is a bit trickier but there are some good videos about pulling the guts out to do it.

If you've got Target Display Mode on your iMac you can do this, as others have mentioned. If you're not a real big tech-head post your About This Mac info and we can give you some advice on whether the hardware is a good step up or not. Depending on your model, a RAM upgrade and a clean install of the OS might be a really cheap and cost-efficient method of getting you back up to top speed.

Will do... I'm at lecture now, I'll post that info when I get home. Thanks!
 
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About this Mac:
iMac (27-inch, Late 2009)
2.66 GHz Intel Core i5
8 GB 1067 MHz DDR3
ATI Radeon HD 4850 512 MB
Model Identifier: iMac11,1
Processor Name: Intel Core i5
Processor Speed: 2.66 GHz
Number of Processors: 1
Total Number of Cores: 4
1 TB HDD
 
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Figured I would bump this to see if anyone else would like to weigh in. Seems like the 2012 quad cores are pretty scarce nowadays, that may not be a viable option. :Grimmace:
 

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