Getting The Mini Mac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Tuned MP5T, Jan 11, 2005.

  1. Tuned MP5T macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2004
    Location:
    New York City
    #1
    I think the Mini Mac is perfect for first timers like myself, but I do have some questions. The Mini will be use for surfing the net, email and itunes. Should I upgrade to 512 MB? and do I really need the superdrive as well as the protection plan?
     
  2. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    Gone but not forgotten.
    #2
    Yes, the Mac mini should be outfitted with 512 MB of RAM for regular uses. However, if it only has one RAM slot as I believe it does, you should really weigh the cost of upgrading to 1 GB now vs. buying 1 GB later and throwing away 512 MB. I had a similar situation years ago.

    You may not need the SuperDrive but backing up your data can be much easier.

    AppleCare or some extended warranty is always a good idea.
     
  3. ravenvii macrumors 604

    ravenvii

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2004
    Location:
    Melenkurion Skyweir
    #3
    As for the memory, you can add memory yourself. But the question is, does this void your warranty? This I don't know, and I'm also interested in the answer. If it doesn't void the warranty, or you don't care, get the 256 MB, and then swap that out with a 512 MB or 1 GB stick and sell the 256 MB stick. It'll cost you less than half of Apple's price.

    As for AppleCare, it's really up to you. Personally, I wouldn't bother with AppleCare for a desktop, but on the other hand, don't forget the Mac mini is a rev A, and Apple is notorious for problematic rev. A products. So maybe you'll wish you have AppleCare later on. But keep in mind that you can wait for up to a year before you buy AppleCare, so you can go without, and see.

    Finally, the SuperDrive depends on what you want to do with the optical drive. Do you plan to burn DVDs or make movies? Then get the SuperDrive. If you just want to watch DVDs and are content with just burning CDs, then a combo drive will do fine for you. I have a combo drive in my iBook, and I never feel limited by it.

    Good luck!
     
  4. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2004
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    #4
    Note that RAM addition is supposed to be done by an authorized support person (see tech specs page), so it's not the trivial thing it's been in other Macs, but it's probably not too horrible.

    The 1GB price seems obscene, even for Apple, but I have no idea what the exact specs are, so I don't know what RAM will cost 3rd party.

    DVD burning is nice, but, of course, you can always get an external burner later if you decide you need one.

    If you add up all the options, the 17" iMac starts to look attractive, so I'd keep it simple.
     
  5. Tuned MP5T thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 6, 2004
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    New York City
    #5
    Also can a PC and Mac share a ethernet connection via a router?
     
  6. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #6
    Yes -- this will not be a problem. All you need is an open ethernet port on your router or wireless.... Very easy to set up.
     
  7. Tuned MP5T thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 6, 2004
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    New York City
    #7
    Can you recommend a good router? It doesn't have to be wireless.
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #8
    Basically anything by Netgear, Linksys, the Airport Extreme or Express. I've used one of the Netgear 802.11g routers, one of the Linksys wired routers, and the Airport Extreme, and I like them all. I've heard good things about Belkin too but never used them. People here will tell you they've had horror stories with one or more routers, but truth is, you can find a thread here describing a horror story with any major router, and people here have gotten all of the major routers to work too. If I needed to buy another one, I'd buy another Netgear WGR614 (802.11g), because it works, has WPA (below) and is really, really cheap. :)

    If you get wireless, try to get one that supports "WPA" -- wireless protected access -- using the "pre-shared key" or "personal" method, which is better than WEP, the other wireless security standard.
     
  9. Dr. Dastardly macrumors 65816

    Dr. Dastardly

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2004
    Location:
    I live in a giant bucket!
    #9
    I've used quite a few and the absolute top two that I like is Linksys and Apple Airport. Both are extremely easy to set up and function great.
    And if you look around you can almost get the Linksys one for free with mail in rebates. :cool:
     
  10. hcuar macrumors 65816

    hcuar

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2004
    Location:
    Dallas
    #10
    I like Netgear... ;) I've had a lot of problems with Linksys products. I've also heard good things about DLink, however I only have a DLink USB 802.11b adapter for my Tivo (so I'm not so sure, it seems to work ok).
     
  11. carlos700 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Location:
    Omaha NE
    #11
    It uses desktop DDR333 Memory. A 1GB Stick will cost approx. $150.

    Yeah, Apple's charging way to much.
     

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