13" MBP + display or mac mini+ display??

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by will0407, Jun 15, 2009.

  1. will0407 macrumors 6502a

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    May 20, 2006
    #1
    Hi all,
    I've got a dilemma- I only use my computer for surfing the web, messenger, a bit of photo and video editing (nothing major) and typing documents etc.

    I've just sold my iMac 24" for £900 cash. I'm torn between getting a mac mini (lower spec) on education price for £485 incl applecare and buying a 24" dell monitor, or getting the new macbook pro for £818 inc applecare and hooking it up to a 24" dell, although the price will end at about £690 inc applecare as I can sell the ipod touch I'd get with it. (and yes, I know i'd have to shell out an extra £165 for the ipod first, which would almost break my bank!)

    Portability is a nice option, but I had a black macbook hooked up to a 20" formac external display and the fans on that were constantly on which got a bit irritating. Will the the 13" MBP be able to run an external display comfortably?

    The mac mini would have a smaller footprint, and I already have a dvi cable I could use whereas I'd have to buy a mini display port to dvi adapter for the MBP.

    I've already bought a Western Digital 500GB scorpio blue, and will buy 4GB RAm from Crucial or ebay for around £45 (won't be any more than that).

    If there are likely to be speed bumps etc to the mac mini in September/October time, then I could wait until then to decide.

    So basically, is it worth spending the extra £200 for portability and a little bit more processing power?
    Machine costs excluding upgrades and displays would be roughly £690 inc app care for the MBP and ££520 for the mini (inc keyboard)
    Any help would be great.
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #2
    I would go for MBP because it's portable. It'll handle second display perfectly.
     
  3. Fizzoid macrumors 68020

    Fizzoid

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    #3
    Question is, is it worth you spending an extra £200 to have the portability? Only you can answer that one...
     
  4. phatlipboardz macrumors member

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    Jun 3, 2009
    #4
    Funny how this same thing happens to quite a few folks. I have the same dilemma.

    I was waiting until after the WWDC, but I just thought they were going to bump the iphone and talk about SL. Had no idea the macbooks would get a bump like this. Subtle bump, but the price point is pretty decent. I think both the mini and the 13" MBP are very capable machines for the money (the mini more so at 499 for a refurb).

    The interesting thing is that it seems these machines are so close in specs (except for the option to 8 gigs of RAM in the MBP, but maybe SL will allow this in the mini), just in a different "box." You could essentially buy the same upgrades for both machines.

    Anyway, I just think it's amazing how well these little machines run with OS X. I have a quad core dell with ATI 512mb graphics card, 320 gb HD dual booting XP and 7. I swear I am always having to "clean" it up to just so it will run half as fast as it did when I got it 1.5 yrs ago. It's strictly a business machine; no games.

    If I didn't have a netbook I would have gone out yesterday to get the MBP. I'm leaning towards the mini as my business desktop replacement and may add the MBP at a later date not too far in the future.

    One additional dilemma I do have however is that having two (or more) machines requires me to sync everything constantly. Doing this with a cloud back up and external HD isn't that bad, but I do think about just having one machine to worry about. If something were to go wrong with that one, I always have the netbook or my BB to check and reply to emails.

    Good luck with the decision.
     
  5. TRAG macrumors 6502

    TRAG

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    Jan 6, 2009
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    Louisiana, USA
    #5
    If you need portability AT ALL or just want to go from room to room, get the MBP and don't look back. While the Mac mini is powerful enough, able to be turned into an HTPC, extremely affordable, and all the bees knees, you still can't take it places with you. I can't answer the speed bump question. I haven't been following too much after the new ones were released.
     
  6. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    May 20, 2006
    #6
    Think i'm swaying more towards the macbook pro 13"....I wouldn't get the webcam with the mac mini as I'd get a 24" dell screen, so I get that as well as the portability.
     
  7. windels macrumors regular

    windels

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    Oct 12, 2008
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    Belgium
    #7
    apple uses ddr3 ram now. doesn't this cost mor than just 45 pounds?

    edit: wow, they dropped more in price than I knew. and, on topic; I would go for the mbp. to me, portability has become indespensable, although at first I thought it would be a luxury.
     
  8. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    ok, thanks for the advice- just got to find the £1050 to pay for all the extras (ipod, appcare, printer) as you have to send off for the rebate!
     
  9. k3v1nc macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #9
    I own both the new Mac Mini and the new 13" MBP...

    I would go for the MBP + external display if I had to choose one...
    however, keep in mind that the Mini has significantly more USB ports, and the ability to connect two large monitors, not just one large and the laptop screen. Also the mac mini has separate audio input and output jacks. They have been combined on the new 13" MBP.

    Also, the Mac Mini comes with a Mini-DVI to DVI adapter... for the MBP, you will have to purchase the displayport to DVI adapter separately.
     
  10. phatlipboardz macrumors member

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    Jun 3, 2009
    #10
    At the price point of both of these machines, I could actually justify the combined cost, especially if I get a refurb mini and also hold out for the refurb 13" MBP.

    I have everything I need (dual monitors, webcam, mouse, keyboard, FW external HD), so the mini is a no brainer for a desktop solution. Even with the FW HD enclosure, I still need the USB ports. I realize I could get a hub for the MBP, but if I'm going to have a portable then I just want it to be a portable. If there was a decent docking solution for a MBP the choice would be easier to turn it into a desktop, but having to go through the unplugging process gets old.
     
  11. anamznazn macrumors regular

    anamznazn

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    #11
    I would def. do the MBP. You never know when you need the portability! And when you do, you'll be so thankful you have it.
     
  12. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    May 20, 2006
    #12
    I definitely won't need a dual display capability, and I'm happy getting a usb hub- I'd probably buy a screen with a few usb ports built in. I'm not that fussed about an input jack as I've never used one, think the only problem here is getting the £1050 together (MBP, apple care, printer, ipod) whereas if i got the mini, it'd only be £485
     
  13. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #13
    You don't have to buy AppleCare now, you can buy it any time during the first year when you're under warranty. Portability is today, you'll need it sometime and MBP has higher resale value
     
  14. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    The applecare is only £45 when you buy it at the same time. if you buy separately, it's alot more, it's still about £75 off ebay!
     
  15. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #15
    How it's 45 when bought at the same time? In Finland's store its 179€ no matter when you buy it :mad:
     
  16. mgridgaway macrumors 6502

    mgridgaway

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    Feb 25, 2006
    #16
    If cost is an issue, have you considered getting the white macbook? It's still quite capable (just as capable as the alu macbook but with slightly slower ram that you probably won't notice) and cheaper than the alu.
     
  17. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    Not a big fan of the white ones, They get marked easily, and my girlfriends alu 1st gen seems very snappy compared to the black macbook I used to have,
     
  18. Barney0 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 6, 2009
    #18
    How the hell are you getting applecare for £45?!?! I thought it was nearer £145 even when bought at the same time. Because of the cost I'll be having to buy it in the months after purchasing my mbp. :S
     
  19. adamfishercox macrumors 6502

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    #19
    Portability all the way. MBP. There's no point in tying yourself to a desk, especially when the portable machine is more powerful.
     
  20. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #20
    don't know, that's just how much it is :s
     
  21. Barney0 macrumors newbie

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    #21
  22. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #22
  23. k3v1nc macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2009
    #23
    Keep in mind with the laptop, you are effectively purchasing the computer, the screen, a keyboard, a mouse(multitouch trackpad), a webcam/microphone, and a battery backup all in one slim portable aluminum housing... well worth it. Where as the mini is just the computer alone (no keyboard or mouse even).

    If the money is holding you back, might I suggest buying the monitor later and just dealing with the small laptop screen until later?
    Also, and someone correct me if I am wrong, you can buy and activate Applecare after the laptop purchase as long as it is before the end of the standard 1-year warranty.... so that might help you spread out the purchase cost.
     
  24. phillyeagles615 macrumors newbie

    phillyeagles615

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    Jun 11, 2009
  25. will0407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    Yes, you can buy it after, but I'm pretty sure you can't buy it for the £45 it costs when you buy the actual machine. if I get the MBP I definitely wouldn't get a screen until september, but the initial cost will still be £1050.
     

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