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Old Nov 29, 2012, 04:51 AM   #1
bsharrah
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Considering Refurbished Mac Mini. Would like some thoughts before pulling trigger.

My PC is on its last leg. I am new to Apple, having purchased an Ipad and Iphone within the last year and am impressed with the overall quality and functionality. I am limited on funds and the best I can afford is a refurbished Mini (2.3ghz i5). I am considering going with this, with the intent of upgrading the RAM to 8g and upgrading the hard drive to an SSD.

Just looking for general input as to whether or not this would be a good idea. Any concerns I should have? Are these relatively easy to upgrade? What performance can I expect from this machine right out of the box compared to a 2.4ghz Core 2 PC from 2007?

Also, it apparently is eligible for OS X Mountain Lion update program. What does that mean? What OS is included and is upgrading recommended at this time?

Thanks for the assistance.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 05:01 AM   #2
justperry
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsharrah View Post
My PC is on its last leg. I am new to Apple, having purchased an Ipad and Iphone within the last year and am impressed with the overall quality and functionality. I am limited on funds and the best I can afford is a refurbished Mini (2.3ghz i5). I am considering going with this, with the intent of upgrading the RAM to 8g and upgrading the hard drive to an SSD.

Just looking for general input as to whether or not this would be a good idea. Any concerns I should have? Are these relatively easy to upgrade? What performance can I expect from this machine right out of the box compared to a 2.4ghz Core 2 PC from 2007?

Also, it apparently is eligible for OS X Mountain Lion update program. What does that mean? What OS is included and is upgrading recommended at this time?

Thanks for the assistance.
2011 model?
Just had to ask, the new 2012 Mini's seem to have problems with flickering on HDMI.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 05:23 AM   #3
bsharrah
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Sorry. Yes, 2011 model.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 05:40 AM   #4
laughjimbo
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I have a 2011 model the same as the one you are looking at getting. I have not had any problems and mine was a refurb and the quality was as new imo but the first thing i did was upgrade the ram to 8gb which cost me 40 from crucial and then i installed a crucial 256gb M4 SSD also from crucial. The performance is great, boot time is approx 14 seconds and programs load pretty much instantly. You would notice a big difference in performance from a 5 year old core 2 duo PC as long as you upgrade the RAM asap.
The update program means that it may come with Lion pre-installed on the machine but Mountain Lion is now available so you have the chance to upgrade the operating system for free i think. I am sure someone else will comment on this part if I have got it wrong.
I don't think that you would regret getting this machine but if you can afford to it may be worth getting the 2012 model as from what I have read here on the forums it has a significant performance boost.
hth
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 05:45 AM   #5
justperry
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Originally Posted by bsharrah View Post
Sorry. Yes, 2011 model.
I say go for it, they are great little machines.

I myself am thinking about buying one as well, I always had laptops but I can not afford a new MBP now, I am still on a powerbook and the mini would be 1000% faster.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 06:46 AM   #6
QWERTYMac7
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BH Photo has the MM you are considering new for $519.

If you buy from them Applecare is $52.

And for another day or two it shipps with Parallels 8 (Or File Maker Pro) for free.

I just bought a 2011 MM i5 2.5 from them and my Applecare is already registered with Apple even though the computer will not arrive here until Monday the 3rd.

Just food for thought...
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 07:52 AM   #7
CausticPuppy
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That Mini will be much faster than your 2.4GHz desktop. And, SSD's are getting much cheaper, and even 16GB memory is really cheap.

Replacing the memory is super easy and doesn't require tools, but you need to be comfortable with (small) tools to swap the hard drive. It's worth it though.

I also went the refurb route with my 2011 server. You get the full warranty and the system is like new, except you don't get the pretty box.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 07:57 AM   #8
philipma1957
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QWERTYMac7 View Post
BH Photo has the MM you are considering new for $519.

If you buy from them Applecare is $52.

And for another day or two it shipps with Parallels 8 (Or File Maker Pro) for free.

I just bought a 2011 MM i5 2.5 from them and my Applecare is already registered with Apple even though the computer will not arrive here until Monday the 3rd.

Just food for thought...
To the op;
this is the better deal by far if you are in the usa and not in New York. No sales tax. The seller is okay.
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Old Nov 29, 2012, 01:46 PM   #9
motrek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsharrah View Post
My PC is on its last leg. I am new to Apple, having purchased an Ipad and Iphone within the last year and am impressed with the overall quality and functionality. I am limited on funds and the best I can afford is a refurbished Mini (2.3ghz i5). I am considering going with this, with the intent of upgrading the RAM to 8g and upgrading the hard drive to an SSD.

Just looking for general input as to whether or not this would be a good idea. Any concerns I should have? Are these relatively easy to upgrade? What performance can I expect from this machine right out of the box compared to a 2.4ghz Core 2 PC from 2007?

Also, it apparently is eligible for OS X Mountain Lion update program. What does that mean? What OS is included and is upgrading recommended at this time?

Thanks for the assistance.
If you are really that hard up for cash that $80 makes a big difference to you, then why not go the Craigslist route? You can get pretty good used Minis and MacBooks for around $300. MacBooks at this price are easier to find and you can easily use one in lid-closed mode and pretend it's a very flat Mini. Plastic MacBooks are also ridiculously easy to upgrade.
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Old Nov 30, 2012, 05:04 AM   #10
bsharrah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motrek View Post
If you are really that hard up for cash that $80 makes a big difference to you, then why not go the Craigslist route? You can get pretty good used Minis and MacBooks for around $300. MacBooks at this price are easier to find and you can easily use one in lid-closed mode and pretend it's a very flat Mini. Plastic MacBooks are also ridiculously easy to upgrade.
Its not that I am hard up for cash, but I would rather save $80 and buy a proven system then spend $80 and buy a system proven to have display issues.

I would also prefer to have something that Apple has inspected and is covering on warranty rather than a Craigslist gamble.

Thanks for the input everyone. The trigger has been pulled.
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Old Nov 30, 2012, 11:54 AM   #11
stuffradio
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Go for whatever you can afford. If you can get the 2012 mid or base, go for it. If you can only afford a refurbished 2011, go for it. I got the 2011 mid level refurbished about a month before the 2012 mini was released. I upgraded the RAM to 16GB that I bought on Black Friday. I don't regret it.
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Old Dec 1, 2012, 12:20 AM   #12
bsharrah
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This might be more appropriate in a new thread but I just purchased a 2011 mini from the refurb store. The listed price was $515. It is on its way to me and I am able to print the invoice. What I do not understand is the invoice price for the unit is less than the listed price I thought I was paying. Has this happened to others and can anyone tell me how or why this occurred? Not complaining about saving money. Just really curious.
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