Mac Mini Core Solo

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by amiga, Jul 21, 2006.

  1. amiga macrumors 6502

    amiga

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Location:
    London.
    #1
    Hi all,

    I have a friend who I am in the process of persuading to get a Mac Mini rather than a bargin basement PC, but I wan't his Mac experiance to be a happy and productive one as I know it can be! He dosen't need a lot of 'power' proformace or anything but I don't want to be responcible for him spending his hard earned money on something he won't be happy with...

    How dose the Core Solo preform in comparison to a true bargn basement PC? I know I need to advise him to get extra RAM so that Rosseta dosen't bog things down on PPC software right?

    Can I have a clear consience if he walks away with a mini ( I can get a little bit of a discount on it too) ?

    :) :confused: :rolleyes: ;)
     
  2. Greebazoid macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
    Location:
    Cape Town
    #2
    I cant vouch for a core solo mini however, I switched from a 64bit AMD 3200+ with 1GB RAM and an Nvidia 6600GT to a core duo mac mini with 512MB RAM

    When I ran sisandra benchmark tests on the mini, running windows (with bootcamp), the core duo got twice the specint and specfp CPU scores, its hard drives where about 60% as fast as the drives in the AMD. The real weakness compared to most PC's will be the GPU - but thats only relevant during game play.

    My experience with the mini today is that any mac software thats a universal binary flies - the slowish drives and weakish GPU appears to not be a problem. If I run rosetta apps (I do, I use MS Office) then the initial launch of any of them is very slow - but once they're up and running, todate, they've been fine. I could certainly help that by seriously upping the memory.
     
  3. DevilsRejection macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    #3
    Tell your friend to get that PC because it will last him a lot longer than the castrated mini

    Better yet, why don't you and your friend learn more about computers so you can build him one out of parts?

    no reason you should have to buy inferior hardware. throw SUSE or Ubuntu on that machine if you don't like Windows. Those linux distros are free!
     
  4. amiga thread starter macrumors 6502

    amiga

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Location:
    London.
    #4
    Ooooh he also likes the built-in Bluetooth and airport as he wants to connect wirelessly to the web! Forgot to mention that and the nasty, nasty PC he bought from Aldi of all places didn't have either (though I realise it wouldn't have airport but you know what I mean) :D
     
  5. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #5
    I would save a few more pennies and go for the Core Duo model - the difference is really startling. Core Solo is OK but Core Duo is streets ahead.
     
  6. amiga thread starter macrumors 6502

    amiga

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2006
    Location:
    London.
    #6
    Thanks for your input guys :D

    Would a solo with 1GB ram be better than a Duo with 512MB RAM?

    I realise you just told me the Duo is worth the extra :)
     
  7. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #7
    I honestly don't think it would be. I think Apple need to do something about their Mac mini lineup now that Core Duo costs are decreasing.

    The "real" entry level mini - something you can conceivably run everything you would need to run (on a mini that is - they're not Pro machines remember) would be a Core Duo with 1GB of RAM and the SuperDrive.

    That would be my starting point for a Mac mini (and a MacBook for that matter although the SuperDrive is not as important in a portable, better to get an external drive with dual-layer etc) in order to have an enjoyable Mac experience without feeling like I'd skimped somewhere and have to deal with that compromise. It may take a little longer to get there but it's worth the effort.
     
  8. amiga thread starter macrumors 6502

    amiga

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    Jul 12, 2006
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    London.
  9. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2005
    #9
    Before you go Grasshopper, you must first try to take this stone from my hand...

    Now go spread the wisdom.
     
  10. generik macrumors 601

    generik

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2005
    Location:
    Minitrue
    #10
    I would recommend the Core Duo model at least, with at least 1GB of memory. 2GB if he can afford it. Heck, in fact I'd max it out, the Mac Mini was really quite a pain to open the last time I tried. Involves putty knives and a lot of weird things that I never knew would also serve to open a computer. Not pretty :rolleyes:

    Why not wait a while for a possible new revision before switching? Getting a mini *today* is really not the best way to spend his money, not that these machines are cheap to start with. With a entry model Macbook so close in pricing with the top model Mini it is really hard to justify buying a Mini really.

    Generally the Mini is a pretty good Mac though, no real issues affecting it apart from less than stellar wireless reception, integrated graphics not withstanding. At least it is the way all Macs should be (again, not including integrated graphics!)
     
  11. dextertangocci macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    #11
    Why the hell are you on a mac forum if you prefer pc's:rolleyes: Just because you don't have a mac anymore, doesn't mean you have to convince other people to switch back as well:rolleyes:
     
  12. generik macrumors 601

    generik

    Joined:
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    Minitrue
    #12
    It is called love-hate.

    Sometimes you have an ideal perception of an entity, but when this perception fails to materialise you get this bitchslap sensation. It stinks to stay on, yet you'd still hang on, hoping that this entity would change for the better towards the original ideal that you expected to find.

    Entities rarely change, at least not where it matters :eek:
     
  13. dextertangocci macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    #13
    I love your posts, they are so different:D
     
  14. livingfortoday macrumors 68030

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    Nov 17, 2004
    Location:
    The Msp
    #14
    Ah, the Core Solo is a fine machine, don't let anyone tell you differently! Unless your friend plans to be doing heavy graphics or video work, the Solo will handle pretty much anything (provided you up the RAM to at least 1GB). Of course, with the Duo you also get a Superdrive versus a Combo drive, so if that's worth it for him, he should go for the Duo. If not... Solo!
     
  15. QCassidy352 macrumors G3

    QCassidy352

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Bay Area
    #15
    I'd strongly advise against a core solo with 512 MB RAM. I think that will be a frustrating introduction to the world of macs. If he can afford 1 GB RAM and/or the core duo mini, then I'm all for it. The core duo with 1 GB would be a very fast and enjoyable machine, but even the core solo should be fine with a GB.
     
  16. amiga thread starter macrumors 6502

    amiga

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    London.
    #16
    Thank you all. Fingers crossed Apple upade the line in the next few weeks and make the choice a little easier ;)
     
  17. Shadow macrumors 68000

    Shadow

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    Keele, United Kingdom
  18. AlBDamned macrumors 68030

    AlBDamned

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    #18
    About a month after they came out, I recommended a friend a core solo Mac Mini, and a £99 screen as his first new Mac purchase. He had a keyboard and mouse from a 400MHz G3 iMac that he had been given and wanted to surf the web, e-mail MS Word and use iMovie and iDVD to edit videos for his family.

    In short, he absolutely loves it. It does everything he wants it to and it was £450 including the screen. I could have recommended him the more expensive core duo but it wasn't in the budget.

    Oh yeah and it runs on 512MB. Not lightening fast, but fast enough for him, lightish user that he is.

    The big factor here was the computer this guy was coming from. it blew the G3 iMac out of the water - as you'd hope it too, so that may be a factor for the OP's friend.

    For the price, and if you have to stick to that price, IMO there's really nothing wrong with it and it does a great job for what it is.

    We're all to used to wanting the latest and greatest. A lot of the time it's complete overkill.

    The only real problem here is the core solo might be dropped soon (though somewhere I read they were keeping it but I'm not sure). Even so, it's still a capable machine.
     
  19. p0intblank macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #19
    Do you have any nearby Apple Stores you can take your friend to? They may have the Core Solo model on display, but there's no guarantee.
     
  20. amiga thread starter macrumors 6502

    amiga

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    Jul 12, 2006
    Location:
    London.
    #20
    He has been with me to the Regents Street Apple store a number of times, I did sugest he went along and had a look at them :)
     

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