iMac or Mac Mini for Web Development?

Discussion in 'Web Design and Development' started by Mooey, Oct 21, 2012.

  1. Mooey macrumors regular

    Feb 8, 2007
    Hey all,

    with the upcoming release, I was wondering if it would be better to get an iMac or a Mac Mini for just mainly web development? I will probably have to have Adobe Photoshop / Fireworks installed, and I may do a bit of programming outside of the web development workflow. I was wondering if the Mac Mini would suffice, or if I would just need to bump up to the iMac.

  2. 12dylan34 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2009
    The mini with an appropriately large screen would suffice, I think. It comes down to what else you want to do with the machine. If you intend to game as well, get the iMac.
  3. Mooey thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 8, 2007
    It's for work primarily so I won't be doing any gaming or anything, just purely web development and some front-end design with Photoshop and Fireworks.
  4. fig macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2012
    Houston, TX
    Yeah, you should be fine with the Mini if that's the route you choose to go. I use a much slower machine now for web dev, design, and photoshop work and don't have any issues unless I get into high res print work.

    Just load it up with RAM and go with the SSD (or add one) if possible and you'll have a snappy little machine.
  5. driftless macrumors 65816


    Sep 2, 2011
    The iMac is a better machine. Price them both out after the updates are announced tomorrow.
  6. segovius macrumors regular


    Sep 18, 2006
    Barcelona / Berlin
    I am in the same boat. My plan is simple yet cunning:

    IF iMac = matte option or less glare revised screen

    THEN iMac


    Mac Mini with 3rd party matte screen
  7. phoenixsan macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2012
    I will go with....

    The iMac, because:

    1- In the 27 inch version you have plenty of screen to work
    2-Better graphics
    3-Better storage options
    4-Slightly better processor

    If so, I will modify the iMac with more RAM (max out) or maybe a SSD

    Having say the above, if you have a nice screen, good keyboard and mouse, maybe the mini is the way to go, with modifications:

    -Max out the RAM
    -External Firewire storage
  8. Mooey thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 8, 2007
    Now that both the Mac Mini and iMac have been announced, can anyone give me an opinion on what they would do if they were in my position?
  9. fig macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2012
    Houston, TX
    I'm in a similar boat and it's honestly a coin flip, probably less so if you already have a really nice display. Both will be more than adequate, I'm going to check out the benchmarks when everything is released and then decide.
  10. driftless macrumors 65816


    Sep 2, 2011
  11. BillyBobBongo macrumors 68020


    Jun 21, 2007
    On The Interweb Thingy!
    I'd go with the iMac.

    Keep in mind that the only program that is really going to tax your system, that you mentioned, is Photoshop. The base model with 8GB of RAM will easily suit your needs, and no doubt serve you well for the next few years without ever requiring an upgrade.
  12. SrWebDeveloper macrumors 68000


    Dec 7, 2007
    Alexandria, VA, USA
    Both have sufficient resources (memory, wifi, ethernet, disk storage) to do what you do since you noted you have the peripherals and monitors. One is obviously much more portable if that matters to you, so maybe you need to figure out of being able to toss it in your soft case and connect remotely from home (if you have monitor, peripherals there as well) or you don't care and always work in your office.

    I personally might consider the retina capable MacBook Pro 13" or 15" as I get complete portability and remote connectivity along with ability to dual monitor at work or home. Especially if you travel or do presentations.
  13. blanka macrumors 68000

    Jul 30, 2012
    Go with the Mini. The iMac is a total new design that is going to have a false start with production problems. With the mini, you're set. Attach it to a Dell 2711 or the new 27 inch samsung PLS displays, and you have a great matte 2560x1440 display that in the Dell case also allows AdobeRGB/sRGB switching (Macs are limited to sRGB only with white-LED backlights).
  14. NVWebsites macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2012
    I think you will be covered with either. I have a Mac Pro and looked at the specs today of the iMac; it looks relatively comparable except I opted for the 8 core- 2 X 2.4 GHz Quad.

    I run Adobe Design Premium products like Dreamweaver and Illustrator. I use Eclipse to write PHP on my localhost.

    I'm very pleased with how it runs. I use Mackeeper periodically to clear all the cache that is generated when I feel like it needs a bit of cleanup.
  15. LaunchpadBS macrumors 6502a

    Nov 11, 2008
    The new Mac Mini base model even should more than cover you, I'm doing a fair amount of dev work on my 13" MBP base model with 16GB ram and an SSD and even with XCode, MSVS2008 and GIMP I have no hassles running iTunes and 3 browsers for testing.
    People seem to be massively underestimating these new gen intel processors.
    At the office they have us working on 4 year old core 2 duo machines and I struggle to even slow those down with all sorts of dev tools and DB's running.
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Any Mac model can easily handle web development tasks.
    I highly recommend you uninstall MacKeeper. You don't need "cleaner" or "maintenance" apps to keep your Mac running well, and some of these apps can do more harm than good. Some can even degrade, rather than improve system performance.

    Some remove files/folders or unused languages or architectures, which does nothing more than free up some drive space, with the risk of deleting something important in the process. These apps will not make your Mac run faster or more efficiently, since having stuff stored on a drive does not impact performance, unless you're running out of drive space.

    Some of these apps delete caches, which can hurt performance, rather than help it, since more system resources are used and performance suffers while each cache is being rebuilt. Caches exist to improve performance, so deleting them isn't advisable in most cases.

    Many of the tasks performed by these apps should only be done selectively to troubleshoot specific problems, not en masse as routine maintenance.

    Mac OS X does a good job of taking care of itself, without the need for 3rd party software. Among other things, it has its own maintenance scripts that run silently in the background on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, without user intervention.

  17. fig macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2012
    Houston, TX
    I think I commented on this in the other thread, but I now do more than what you're looking to do on a 2007 iMac. I think you're good either way :)
  18. definitive macrumors 68000


    Aug 4, 2008
    13" macbook pro or air, and some ~$200 24" or 27" screen with some converter plug should probably be enough for you.
  19. Mooey thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 8, 2007

    Hey all,

    I just wanted to give you all an update in case anyone was in the same boat. I went with the Mac Mini. It's perfect for everything I do. I bumped the RAM up to 16GB and threw in a SSD. It loads 50MB photoshop files flawlessly, compiles my code without a hitch, and uploads/downloads 1GB> folders / files with no hiccups.

    Perfect little machine for what I needed. I really liked the iMac's design, but I already had all of the equipment to make a computer. I would say if you don't have any monitors / keyboads / mice to go with the iMac, but if you have the other stuff, go with the Mac Mini.
  20. tekboi macrumors 6502a


    Aug 9, 2006
    New Orleans ✈ WesŦward
    I would have recommend the 27" iMAC for web design. This thing is an absolute beauty to work with. And the resolution is twice of most monitors of the same size. But if you already have monitors... I guess the mac mini would suffice.

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