Many other new "iMac to Mini" converts here?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Paulywauly, Nov 1, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    Paulywauly

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #1
    Are there many new Mini owners out there who like me were put off buying a new iMac and decided to "Go Mini" instead?

    Before the last keynote i was holding on for a refreshed iMac to replace my aging model, but was put off by the lack of accessible RAM in the 21.5 and slow hard drive in the base model. For me personally it just didn't represent good value for money anymore.

    I always wanted a Mini (they just look so cool!) but always ended up with iMacs. After the last Keynote though i decided to take the plunge and finally buy one. Admittedly, at first i felt i might be "trading down" but after a few days of working with it i couldn't be happier. :D
     
  2. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2012
    #2
    Im currently thinking about it!
     
  3. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2010
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    #3
    Still have a 2010 iMac & will keep it till the day it dies.

    But I'm getting work done on my new 2012 Mini, i7 2.3 quad-core. Best computer on the planet for the $$$ IMO.
     
  4. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2010
    #4
    The base Mac mini has the same "slow" drive. However, it also doesn't have a dedicated graphics cards nor a good processor. But it's your money; use it when you need it.
     
  5. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2008
    #5
    I'm thinking about it also - my main concern with the iMac is whether the screen and body are glued together. If this is the case, out comes the heat gun onto a nice shiny laminated screen if something goes wrong :eek:

    Mac Mini looks far easier to pull apart and upgrade.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Paulywauly

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #6
    Good points, although the hard drive can be easily be upgraded (compared to a new iMac anyway)

    I can only speak for myself, but for my own use it wasn't worth spending the £500 extra on an iMac. My last one was a Core 2 Duo, so despite losing the built in IPS screen its a real improvement.
     
  7. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    #7
    One year after buying 24" iMac in Sep 2009, I realised that the machine works more time in music/video/downloading (w/o display) than normal surfing stuff (that needs display). Doesnt make a lot of sense to keep the display and energy demanding iMac on. So I bought an energy efficient mac mini to test out. Have never gone back to iMac since.
     
  8. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2010
    #8
    Replacing my white imac with i7 mini with fusion drive. It's a shame to have to trash a nice screen just because the computer has gotten slow.
     
  9. macrumors 68020

    MattZani

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2008
    Location:
    Weymouth, UK
    #9
    I am considering a Mini instead of an iMac now, not because of the iMac, just because the Mini is so powerful.
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2010
    #10
    Same exact thing happened to me, highly disappointed with the new iMac as it is no longer a value how it was in the past.... I am currently buying the new Mac Mini 2.6ghz quad core next week, can't wait!
     
  11. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    #11
    It's also less than half the price of a base iMac. The mid-mini with the 2.3 quad is probably the best value.
     
  12. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2012
    Location:
    East Moline, Ill.
    #12
    I had been seriously considering the new iMac, but, when I found out you couldn't upgrade the RAM (yourself) unless you got the 27-inch....pffft. It was a no brainer. The mini is more upgradeable and provides more bang for my dollar considering how I'll use it. Plus I already have a relatively new keybard, wireless mouse and 21-inch monitor.
     
  13. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2012
    #13
    I find the new iMacs quite sexy. Drives and stuff can be replaced, and they have QC processors and dedicated graphics. Yet - I have one big issue with the iMac. Them changing the screen and all is nice, but those resolutions are atrocius at 21.5 / 27 inches. Especially for a "premium" product.

    Depending on whether you'll need the power (although I do believe Mac Mini offers a Quad processor) and the dedicated GPU, it's up to you. If I were in your shoes I'd opt for a Mac Mini, and get myself a kickass 3rd party monitor with insane resolution and quality.
     
  14. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2012
    #14
    I've been in the market for a new iMac to replace my slow mid-2007 model since late last year. I figured the new ones were just around the corner. They didn't appear in January. Researching it, I realized they were probably linked to Intel's release schedule. But they didn't come out with the new chips. When they were finally announced, the 27-incher that I wanted was still vapor, not coming until "December."

    That did it.

    I ordered a 27-inch Dell display that got a great review at AnandTech and a maxed out Mac mini with a Fusion Drive. The display is in the box here and the mini has just left China.

    On the graphics: I read the tests at BareFeats.com that people are talking about, and then I downloaded the two utilities they used (Cinebench and Unigine-Heaven) and tested my iMac's graphics myself. My iMac rates 1/10 and 1/6, respectively, for CPU and OpenGL speed of the Mac mini tested, a 2.3 quad (I myself splurged for the 2.6). So the mini should scream compared to my old iMac. And graphics is not my choke point on my current machine. CPU speed is. So I'm not too worried yet about the lack of a discrete graphics card.

    Remember: the graphics mostly affects game rendering (I don't do games) and rendering of edited video and 3D models, as well as Photoshop filters on large images. I use Photoshop, but only basic filtering on web-resolution images. For interface element rendering I don't think there will be any problem at all on even a 27-inch display at maximum resolution. We'll see though: as I said I don't have it yet.

    I think the iMacs are getting more and more crippled, CD slot aside: for instance, the Mac mini has an Audio In and an Audio Out. The iMacs have only an Audio Out (which they renamed "Headphones" so as not to emphasize the lack of in/out symmetry). I wish they'd make the iMac _thicker_ and the mini _taller_ and just put all the stuff in them that is needed, without compromises.

    I'm starting to feel that us desktop guys are going to see slimmer and slimmer pickings from Apple, and I don't like the dumbing down of OS X either. I don't like all the iTunes updates for features I don't want, I don't like iCloud, and so on. Now that I have a more componentized system with the mini, I plan to buy a KVM switch and a small PC box and load Linux on it and reacquaint myself with it, looking to become a possible future "switcher" if I can get my work done in one of the Linux distros.
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2009
    Location:
    S. AZ.
    #15
    I could have written this it is so close to my scenario. Biggest thing I didn't like about iMac was the screen. Just to large for me and the GLARE! Using a mini allows me the freedom to chose my monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc. I am a light user also, minimal photo editing and only downloading videos from my iphone, no video editing.
     
  16. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2010
    #16
    I moved over this weekend to the Mac mini platform from iMac, basically somebody made me a stupid offer for my old 2011 core i7 machine that i could not really turn down.

    Now running the Mac mini 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 with the Dell UltraSharp U2713HM 27" Widescreen LED Monitor.
     
  17. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Location:
    SoCal
    #17
    Didn't feel like waiting and spending $2,200+ for a 27" with a somewhat SSD drive.

    Opted for the base Mini and added 16GB RAM and a 128GB SSD (total cost around $800). Picked up a 23" Cinema Display (and another 20") and I'm quite happy with it...so far. It's pretty fast and should last me several years.

    Thinking about the 27" thunderbolt display...but I have a feeling that will get refreshed.
     
  18. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    #18
    I'm seriously considering it. I have an early 2009 iMac that's beginning to have problems. I originally held out for the new iMac to be announced, but after seeing the release, I started giving the mini serious consideration.

    Here's what I use my Mac for:

    • Web surfing, email, etc
    • Watching TV shows/Movies
    • Rip DVDs (strictly for archival purposes)
    • Transfer/Convert Tivo recordings
    • VPN into Work using Remote Desktop
    • Virtualbox for running one or two VMs

    I do need two monitors, but based on the above, I'm not sure I'm going to see any benefit to a discrete graphics card as I don't plan on gaming. I'm probably going with the mid-level mini simply for the upgrade in the CPU to the quad i7. I happened to transfer and 24 Tivo recordings and used Toast to convert to MP4. This took about 14 hours on my existing machine. I'm going to assume it will be a lot fast on the i7.

    My biggest decision now is which monitor I want. I'm tossed between Apple's Thunderbolt display, the Dell 30" U3011 or 27" U2711. I like the idea of the Dells since I can use it on other computers without the thunderbolt connector.

    I'm probably going to pick up the mini this weekend and decide on the monitor over the next couple of weeks.

    ----------

    Can you tell me which Dell monitor you went with?
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Location:
    iLondon/iDurban
    #19
    I went Mini and with the money saved bought 2 24" IPS monitors :D
     
  20. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2012
    #20
    Thinking about an i7 mini with monitor instead of a base 2012 iMac. I could also use it on my 50" Pioneer Kuro.

    Not sure what 24" Monitor to get though. Maybe the Dell U2410 or 2412, but HDMI in would be nice, which the latter doesn't have.

    The AOC i2353Ph is also a nice looking monitor, but has clouding issues and a dodgy stand.
     
  21. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #21
    I've just sold an iMac and gone for the mid range Mac Mini. Same as you I was a little let down by the 21.5" model & it isn't exactly cheap!

    Only setup the Mini today but so far so good, good spec for the price! Mine is connected to a 24" LG HD Display :)
     
  22. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2012
    #22
    went from 27 inch to 2.6 ghz bto mini. Excellent so far with Nec pa301w.
     
  23. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2012
    #23
    I was all about getting a 27" iMac. Was just waiting for it to be refreshed. Not that I don't like the new model. I think it's absolutely beautiful! But, the more that I read, the more that I realize that it's not really the best bang for the buck. I don't sit in front of my computer 12 hours per day like I used to and also don't have the $ coming in like I used to either so I'm trying to make a wiser choice for myself instead of being drawn in by the beauty of the screen.

    With that said, I'm going to go with the i7 Mini and upgrade the ram myself. My current Dell computer is about 6 years old with 3GB of ram so the Mini in stock form will be a huge jump in performance. I might just throw an 8GB stick in there (brings it to 12) and call it a day.

    I'm looking at a 30" Dell W3000 LCD monitor (1280x786). I think I can find something really nice for $300. or less to replace it. Even a cheap monitor will have better resolution! :) I'd like to at least be in the 24-27" range though.
     
  24. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2011
    #24
    My Mac Mini replaced a 2006 iMac. No more iMacs for me! I've had it with the lack of accessibility to the innards, the glassy display, the lack of ergonomic adjustments, the fact that if something breaks the Mac is out of commission while it is being repaired. I can actually replace many Mini hardware components myself.

    I'm a fan of NEC displays. They are better-built than Dell yet comparably-priced. Top-notch customer service too.

    It's been almost a week and I have never been more satisfied with a Mac: It's powerful, small and quiet as a church mouse. And only $799. :)
     
  25. fig
    macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #25
    Mojo, I'm about to get rid of my late '06/early '07 iMac myself.

    Seriously looking at a BTO mini with the 2.6 and SSD here, I think a lot of folks are blowing the lack of graphics card out of proportion and think they need more computer than they probably do.
     

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