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digitalmac
Oct 7, 2009, 12:18 PM
As the rumors of a new Mac mini has been going on for quite some time and I am sure this update won't be a drastic change to the current edition. What will be your ideal Mac mini? And as Front Row is the Apple's media centre solution, what are the features lack?

For me, the obvious addition would be a HDMI for video.



AAPLaday
Oct 7, 2009, 12:26 PM
You should be able to browse the iTunes store and buy from it. It should have more codec support out of the box. Those are just a few initial thoughts :D

jaw04005
Oct 7, 2009, 12:42 PM
I firmly believe Front Row development is dead, and Apple doesn’t want you to use your Mac mini as a HTPC.

Therefore, I’m not expecting much of the next update. I think the current 2.0Ghz, 320GB hard drive model with 2GB of memory will become the low-end model. And a new 2.2Ghz model with a 500GB hard drive and 4GB of memory will become the high-end for $799. I think they’ll keep the NVIDIA 9400M graphics chip/chipset combo, the SuperDrive (no Blu-ray) and DisplayPort (no HDMI).

I don’t expect an update to Front Row ever again.

Ideally? The current Mac mini with a better processor, Blu-ray, HDMI, 4GB of RAM standard and a 500GB hard drive. I would also like to see an update to the 9400M (what is the 9400M’s successor anyway?) and a minor case revision (maybe a black or silver/black version like the iPod nano).

I would also like Apple to offer a complete Media Center software solution (like Windows Media Center) with DVR and plug-in support for Hulu, Netflix, etc, essentially Front Row 3 (as Front Row 2.0 only shipped to the Apple TV).

And since this is all a pipe dream, overscan correction tools built into Mac OS X (hello Plex, 720p panels that are actually 1366x768 are a bitch to get right in OS X, thanks LCD manufacturers).

digitalmac
Oct 8, 2009, 10:53 AM
I believe that Apple is still finding a fine line to position it or they have something in lab. In the short term, there will only be minor updates. However, in the long run I am sure Apple needs a solution for a media hub in your living room, either in the form of Apple TV or Mac mini. This is how they could further position their iTunes Store.

I personally more incline to the Mac mini as it offers more flexibility for people living outside the support of a iTunes Store. Having a HDMI support is the next step from Apple. And blu-ray would be an ideal addition. However, I am not sure if the current design and the hardware spec can support a blu-ray in it.

For Front Row, I do appreciate if Apple can add it a feature to select different audio sources from the video file just like in iTunes. Right now Front Row is only outputting 2 channels digital audio and I would love to be able to get the direct AC3.

zombitronic
Oct 8, 2009, 12:01 PM
And as Front Row is the Apple's media centre solution, what are the features lack?

The ability to load .iso files (DVD/Blu-ray image files) directly from Front Row.

Right now, if you have an .iso file on your Mac you must manually mount it before you can watch it. After you do, the image appears in Front Row under the DVD tab. You launch it and you get the full DVD experience, menu and all.

Ideally, I'd like to have a folder of .iso files, pick one from within Front Row and have Front Row automatically mount and launch the "DVD". Even better, add .iso support to iTunes so I can tag the files with information, such as the proper name, (Pulp Fiction instead of PULPFICTION.iso), poster art, year, etc.