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Old Jul 20, 2011, 07:53 AM   #1
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Apple Releases New Sandy Bridge Mac Minis and Thunderbolt Display







Apple today released an update to its Mac mini line, bringing Intel's Sandy Bridge platform to the diminutive desktop computer along with new support for the Thunderbolt connectivity standard being pushed by Apple and Intel. The new Mac mini lineup consists of two standard stock configurations alongside a "server" model. Notably, all models drop the optical disc in favor of an optional external SuperDrive.

Standard models
- 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5, 500 GB hard drive, 2 GB RAM: $599
- 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5, 500 GB hard drive, 4 GB RAM: $799

Server model
- 2.0 GHz, dual 500 GB hard drives, 4 GB RAM: $999

Additional build-to-order options include an upgrade to 8 GB of RAM, up to 750 GB hard drives, and an external SuperDrive. The high-end standard model and the server model can also be configured with one (standard) or two (server) 256 GB solid-state drives.
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The new Mac mini delivers up to twice the processor and graphics performance of the previous generation in the same amazingly compact and efficient aluminum design.* Starting at just $599 (US), the new Mac mini is available for order today and in stores tomorrow.

"Mac mini delivers the speed and expandability that makes it perfect for the desktop, living room or office," said Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. "With faster processors, more powerful graphics and Thunderbolt in an incredibly compact, aluminum design, the new Mac mini is more versatile than ever."
All Mac mini models ship with OS X Lion pre-installed.




Alongside the new Mac mini models, Apple also announced a new Apple Thunderbolt Display. Appearing nearly identical to the previous 27-inch LED Cinema Display, the primary upgrade to Apple's sole standalone display offering is Thunderbolt compatibility, enabling the device to be used within daisy-chained configurations of the new high-speed data and display connectivity standard. With the new standard, users can for the first time run two displays off of a single Thunderbolt port on Macs offering enough graphics horsepower to support the pixel load.




The upgrade to Thunderbolt also allows Apple to turn the display into an "ultimate docking station", with the new display now offering a built-in FaceTime HD camera, 2.1 speaker system, three USB ports, one Firewire 800 port, one Gigabit Ethernet port, and a second Thunderbolt port to enable daisy chaining. An integrated MagSafe cable for powering connected notebook computers also continues to be offered.
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"The Apple Thunderbolt Display is the ultimate docking station for your Mac notebook," said Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing." With just one cable, users can dock with their new display and connect to high performance peripherals, network connections and audio devices."
Images of the new Thunderbolt-enabled LED Cinema Display leaked on Apple's site late last week, foreshadowing their arrival alongside the Mac minis that do not ship with an included display. The new LED Cinema Display will be available within the next 60 days and is priced at $999.

Article Link: Apple Releases New Sandy Bridge Mac Minis and Thunderbolt Display
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 07:55 AM   #2
miniroll32
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Quote from the Mac Mini's product page:

"Mac mini is designed without an optical disc drive. Because these days, you don’t need one. It’s easier than ever to download music and films from the iTunes Store. And you can download apps from the Mac App Store with a click."

LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL... Yeah, right Apple. The Mac Mini is a 'hub' with HDMI, yet it can't even play DVD's? Rip CD's? And whats the point of having Boot Camp when you can't use a Windows disc?

Epic. Fail.

Last edited by miniroll32; Jul 20, 2011 at 08:14 AM.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 07:57 AM   #3
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Actually I'm happy to see the optical drive go, but SSD should have being standard.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:07 AM   #4
ArcaneDevice
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Originally Posted by Torrijos View Post
Actually I'm happy to see the optical drive go, but SSD should have being standard.
Happy to see it go? Why? Did it insult you at some point or date your sister?

No drive is idiotic. You can't rip your CDs to it and use it as a music server. You can't run Windows 7 Media Center on it. It doesn't play DVDs.

Unless you pay another $70 and have another box sat on top of it. Which defeats it's compact design.

It hasn't been reduced in price, just flexibility.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:21 AM   #5
manu chao
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Originally Posted by ArcaneDevice View Post
Happy to see it go? Why? Did it insult you at some point or date your sister?

No drive is idiotic. You can't rip your CDs to it and use it as a music server. You can't run Windows 7 Media Center on it. It doesn't play DVDs.

Unless you pay another $70 and have another box sat on top of it. Which defeats it's compact design.
You cannot rip CDs without pulling out a $70 box out of your drawer and connect it. Nobody forces you to put a box on it 24/7 if you only use it once or twice per month.

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Originally Posted by Yvan256 View Post
The MBA Superdrive may be overpriced, but it only has a USB cable and gets its power from the Macbook Air/Mac mini. I think the extra cost is worth it for some people if it can eliminate another cable and another power brick. And it doesn't look out of place since it looks like a smaller Mac mini too.
My LaCie 'Superdrive' also gets its power via USB. You pay extra for the looks (and possibly the privilege to play DVDs with DVDplayer instead of VLC, my LaCie plays DVDs only via VLC).

Last edited by manu chao; Jul 20, 2011 at 10:26 AM.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:29 AM   #6
vito
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Originally Posted by manu chao View Post
You cannot rip CDs without pulling out a $70 box out of your drawer and connect it. Nobody forces you to put a box on it 24/7 if you only use it once or twice per month.
^ This. Why do you want an optical drive as a permanent fixture, Apple have obviously given this decision some thought, they just didn't decide one day they're going to completely remove the optical drive and be done with it.

How often do you and everyone posted so far burn to disc?
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:51 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Torrijos View Post
Actually I'm happy to see the optical drive go, but SSD should have being standard.
Me too!

The fact is, optical disks are still used for many things (and thus we have it as an option)—and most of those things I’d rather be done with! Downloads, please!

I’ve had an Air for 3 years and never got the DVD drive. Never wished for it, either—except for games with key disc protection! Let’s hope more machines without optical drives keep appearing (kudos to Alienware, for instance). Get rid of those breakable, scratchable key discs!

Give me a download, and an easy way to back it up (Time Machine and/or iCloud). Burning backups to DVD is expensive and cumbersome anyway.

Then the main reason to still have a DVD drive is for DVD movies (Netflix and the library—I’ll still use both occasionally, scratches and failures and all). But most people already have a DVD player they use for that. If not—if they Mini is going to be their only DVD player—then that minority can get the optional external.

Now, for a short time, a vocal minority will THINK they need a DVD drive more than they do. I remember the floppy disk scandal

But yes, some do. And for them, the Mini is now a little less elegant. Still fast and cheap!

Last edited by nagromme; Jul 20, 2011 at 11:00 AM.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 07:58 AM   #8
ekwipt
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Not that fazed by no DVD drive, but doesn't make a lot of sense if you wanted to use it as a media centre.

Does anyone know if the new AMD Radeon HD 6630M can handle blue ray rips and 1080P video?
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 07:59 AM   #9
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So I'm guessing the new 27" ACD with TB won't work with older Mac's that have the Mini DisplayPort?
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:01 AM   #10
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Why get rid of the optical drive on a desktop/media computer . It's not like it didn't fit in the enclosure to begin with. I'm so glad i got a 2011 MBP. I think it's all but certain they'll be next in line for an ODD excision.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:41 AM   #11
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Why get rid of the optical drive on a desktop/media computer . It's not like it didn't fit in the enclosure to begin with. I'm so glad i got a 2011 MBP. I think it's all but certain they'll be next in line for an ODD excision.
You would have to ask Steve to be sure, but I think it is a combination of being able to use the interior volume for other things, like better graphics and cost, the thinking being that the majority of customers would not care and those who did would simply attach an external optical drive...no big deal.

It is a trade-off I think worthwhile. I have been using external optical drives for some time now anyway.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:01 AM   #12
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Bye Bye White Macbook

I should have known not to buy a white macbook yesterday!!!!!!!!!
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:02 AM   #13
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I should have known not to buy i macbook yesterday!!!!!!!!!
You can return it.
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Old Jul 21, 2011, 12:55 PM   #14
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I should have known not to buy a white macbook yesterday!!!!!!!!!
You have a 15 day return policy at the Apple Store online and in stores, so depending on where you bought it, there's no trouble.

Best Buy also allows returns, as do most other retailers. The worst you'd have to deal with is a restocking fee, but if it's that important, then pay it and get yourself an Air or a MBPro.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:05 AM   #15
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So I'm guessing the new 27" ACD with TB won't work with older Mac's that have the Mini DisplayPort?
I'm guessing you're correct. All the other connectors built into this new display would be useless without Thunderwear that's fun to wear.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:51 AM   #16
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So I'm guessing the new 27" ACD with TB won't work with older Mac's that have the Mini DisplayPort?
No, it does not work with Macs without a TB port.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:56 AM   #17
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No, it does not work with Macs without a TB port.
They sell the old LED Cinema as an add-on for Mac Pro so that's probably true.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:01 AM   #18
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It's nice to have the 6630M in the high end Mac Mini, but where is the quad core CPU option?? They should not make the quad core exclusive to the Server version.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:17 AM   #19
manu chao
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It's nice to have the 6630M in the high end Mac Mini, but where is the quad core CPU option?? They should not make the quad core exclusive to the Server version.
You could see it the other way around, the server option is exclusive to the quad core option. Since adding the server OS costs only $50 in Lion (and can be done after the fact), the $999 is largely just the price for a quad core and dual disk option.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:34 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by trfjason View Post
It's nice to have the 6630M in the high end Mac Mini, but where is the quad core CPU option?? They should not make the quad core exclusive to the Server version.
why is there no 250HP engine in a honda civic?

sure some people buy a fully loaded Civic EX-L but most people don't. same with the mini, most people buy the cheaper models and probably not enough will upgrade for apple to spend the money to buy the motherboards and CPU's

even dell and HP changed their model lineups where the better graphics cards and CPU's are only on the higher priced models
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:58 AM   #21
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Quad, please!

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Originally Posted by trfjason View Post
It's nice to have the 6630M in the high end Mac Mini, but where is the quad core CPU option?? They should not make the quad core exclusive to the Server version.
Right, the higher end with the ATI graphics plus quad would be very nice! I'm wondering if it's easy to change out the HDD for an SSD yourself, I know I can get one a lot cheaper than that.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:01 AM   #22
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It's obvious that Apple is moving to an all digital future. And to be honest, whatever apple does usually happens.

I am actually happy about that, I hate having to deal with DVD's, cd's, etc...

Much easier to download and backup on a hard drive these days.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 08:40 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by ViperDesign View Post
It's obvious that Apple is moving to an all digital future. And to be honest, whatever apple does usually happens.

I am actually happy about that, I hate having to deal with DVD's, cd's, etc...

Much easier to download and backup on a hard drive these days.
Problem is, not all of us use our computers/optical drives for "traditional purposes" like software installs or backups. Like just yesterday, I needed to slipstream SP3 into a retail copy of XP Pro, which required a DVD so I could burn an ISO. Apple doesn't know what I'm going to be using my computer for, so the best thing they can do is give me all the tools I could possibly need (especially in a DESKTOP computer) so I can use them as needed.
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 10:31 AM   #24
manu chao
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Apple doesn't know what I'm going to be using my computer for, so the best thing they can do is give me all the tools I could possibly need
They still give it to you, they just changed the packing for these tools (and the price if you will).
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Old Jul 20, 2011, 09:52 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by ViperDesign View Post
It's obvious that Apple is moving to an all digital future. And to be honest, whatever apple does usually happens.

I am actually happy about that, I hate having to deal with DVD's, cd's, etc...

Much easier to download and backup on a hard drive these days.
Using hard drives will seem quaint in the future too if Apple's iCloud takes off.
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