15" MacBook Pro/Mac Mini..uh..Idea/delima/tragedy?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Krafty, Jun 11, 2009.

  1. Krafty macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
    Location:
    La La Land
    #1
    Alright, the one thing I've been looking at was a MacBook Pro. The few reasons we're a better GFX chip, bigger screen, and possibly more RAM. I do GFX design & photography work, but I like doing them large scale, so the pet peeve I picked up over my 3.5 year old MacBook was the small screen. I've updated the RAM to 2GB & I'm on my 3rd hard drive (60 -> 120 -> 250GB).

    So lets make a disclaimer first: No, I am not spoiled. I hate asking my parents for things, but I think kind of person who rarely does. And when I do, yeah, its kinda expensive. But my few expenses I've all had from over 2 years, or I sold my old stuff to help pay (or paid full for). If you want me to run the list just so you'll answer then so be it. I'm a college student earning decent grades, so I don't think I'm leeching while giving absolutely nothing in return.







    So, all the judgmental insults gone? YAY! Okay. So, the deal was I was going to sell my MacBook for around $700 (with the upgraded HD & RAM in it obviously). Its a 2.0GHz CD. It's still alive, however, hiccups now and then. Me and this thing have been through hell, but it manages to get the job done, but i found myself using the schools massive tank steroid-injected (over-exaggration) Mac Pros. Now, I understand that I could just get an adapter and possibly just use my Mac and mirror the screen...
    BUT!, Theres a big "but" in this somewhere...


    [​IMG]
    ^THERE IT IS!


    I figured, with a new computer, I could get an updated hardware along with the bigger screen.

    So, 15" MBP, base $1,700. My dad has educational discount but I dont know how much that is. Bollocks to that I thought:

    So, $700 from me, would mean my parents would still have to shell out more than $500 each. (yes, I talked to my mom at least about it)

    However, after recently remembering the HDMI plug in my Dynex 22" flatscreen (Flame me, I know its a crap LCD. I bought it with my money, I'm happy with it), I figured why not just buy the Mac Mini, get the adapter/HDMI cable, and use my Dynex as a monitor? I barely use it as a TV (actually, my crap 13" is hooked to the satellite right now). I use it to play my Xbox 360 on (which I also barely do...staring to grow out of video games but still awaiting Bioshock 2), and watch movies off my 360.

    So I figured, if I got a Mac Mini:
    http://store.apple.com/us/configure/MB463LL/A?mco=NDE4Mzg4Mw
    • Work off the bigger screen, and browse/look up info on my 13"
    • I though long and hard (and theres a dick joke in there somewhere), and I don't need a bigger screen so much for a laptop. I desktop would suffice, as then I can work in my dorm, rather than drive to the school to use the bigger monitors
    • I was looking at the bare, and the better GFX card and I suppose 2.0Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo would do me good, but I'm a little etchy on the 1GB RAM/120GB. May have to upgrade that...
    • I would preload all my movies and music, and use frontrow to change, instead of having to distract away from work on my Macbook to change albums.
    • A few other points that you probably dont care about cause your at the tl;dwr state, but if you want I'll try to explain

    So after thinking :)eek: Thats right, I remember I had a whole other half of my brain that I could use for this), that would mean, giving my birthday coming up, I could pitch in, making it less than $300 from each of us. My mom said she'll do $300. So I thought thats was a pretty good deal.

    Dual screen, updated hardware for the future, already got a 22" monitor.

    So. Yeah. I'm proud of myself for thinking. Usually it takes a few bags of skittles.
     
  2. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
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    #3
    Too big of a butt?
     
  3. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604

    thegoldenmackid

    Joined:
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    Location:
    dallas, texas
    #4
    That sounds good. Either option would seem to suit you fine. But if you are okay with using the Mac Pro's elsewhere, even the MacBook Pro might seem miniscule compared to the Mac Pro's.
     
  4. TwinCities Dan macrumors 603

    TwinCities Dan

    Joined:
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    Double Parked out front of the Courthouse
    #5
    Not at all, but I am too old to comment further... :eek:
     
  5. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
    Location:
    La La Land
    #6
    I mean, in a way, but as I mentioned, this will save my from having to drive to school (and me + no sleep + driving = not a good combo in a few almost unfortunate situations), and I can do my work in my dorm. The only REAL reason I use the MP's is for the larger screen. But as far as importing photos and whatnot, if my 2GHz CD can handle it, I think a 2GHz C2D can too.

    I don't do anything like AE where I need the beast 8 cores, and if I do I'll make the trip. But all in all, I would have a 22" compared to their 17/18"? Something like that.
     
  6. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #7
    You can get the new low-end mini for $499 on refurb. 4GB of RAM is $60 from a third party (most necessary imo).
     
  7. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
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    #8
    I also noticed the keyboard/mouse was also needed. I remember the G3 (my first personal computer..the golden 600Mhz days..) that I still have at my dads up in NY. Would the keyboard & mouse to that work?

    And the RAM idea sounds like a plan. Is the HD exchangeable too? Just wondering, with my 250HD external I may just boot the music off that.
     
  8. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

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    #9
  9. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
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    #10
    Patience is the key here. They come and go almost daily. Any USB kbd/mouse will work.
     
  10. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

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    #11
    Yeah, cause just the keyboard and mouse is an addition $100.
     
  11. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
    Location:
    La La Land
    #12
    Okay, one more thing. My Dynex LCD has a DVI HDMI input & a VGA input. I looked at the Mac Mini in-box features, and it says it has a Mini-DVI to DVI adapter, but it looks fairly small. Right now, I have a VGA cable for the LCD.

    So should I keep the Mac Mini close to the screen and see if the adapter reaches, or should I buy a VGA-to-Mini DVI adapter?
     
  12. 007bond macrumors 6502a

    007bond

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2008
    Location:
    DFW, Texas
    #13
    get a mini-dvi to hdmi adapter like this one: http://www.amazon.com/PTC-Mini-DVI-Adapter-6ft-Macintosh/dp/B001H0REVK

    it will cost a little bit more but it will get you better quality. also if your tv has a dvi port then you are all set, no adapters needed. also, remember that you still need speakers
     
  13. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
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    La La Land
    #14
    This is what it has. I honestly didn't notice the DVI port, I thought it was only VGA.

    I think my 1.5 year old Z-5500 will suffice.
     

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  14. hornshwangler macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
    #15
    The minis are superb and I highly recommend them. I have 3 minis and they are hands down the best Mac value, IMO. You should try to acquire the base mini, for about $599 and do the DIY upgrade to the RAM and HD from Other World Computing. OWC has a 500 gb hd with the DIY kit for about $170 and the 4 gb RAM for less that $70. the benefits of DIY over using / purchasing apple upgrades is that you end up with an additional external drive in the DIY enclosure that you otherwise wouldn't have if upgrading from apple. Not a huge difference but it helps justify the DIY upgrade and minimize the cost.

    good luck to you and please let us know what you decide. No your butt is not too big.

    Dan
     
  15. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
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    La La Land
    #16
    Thanks for the advice but I was already going to do that.

    My budget will still be tight, so I'm going to get a 320GB that I saw on newegg for $65, put the 250GB from my 13" in the mini, and the 320 in my MB.
    I'm going to get the mini, however I still need to be sure that the DVI shown in my TV will work, and perhaps, return the VGA cable if the mini comes with a DVI cord already.
     
  16. geoffreak macrumors 68020

    geoffreak

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2008
    #17
    You can pick up DVI -> HDMI cables for under $2 USD off Amazon (plus $5 or more in shipping). I've bought two such cables already and they both work perfectly with my Mini. You will need the previous generation to do this, otherwise you will need a miniDVI -> HDMI.
     
  17. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

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    #18
    But on the apple site it says it comes with a miniDVI to DVI adapter, and my TV has a DVI port.
     
  18. J&JPolangin macrumors 68030

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    Thule GL @ the TOW
    #19
    ...I'm trying to decide between a mini refurb and a whitebook refurb for the same resons...
     
  19. benlangdon macrumors 65832

    benlangdon

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    #20
    monoprice.
    just go there for any and all cables.

    so why do you need this?

    why would your dad have a educational discount, don't you have one, ya know since your in school?

    "Idea/delima/tragedy?" still don't get it.
     
  20. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
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    La La Land
    #21
    ...okay?

    No, My question right now is do I even NEED one, seeing as, my TV has an DVI port, and the mini comes with a miniDVI-to-DVI adapter.

    Did you read my post at all? And my dad's a teacher, he mentioned it when he bought my MB, and my college is not listed.
     
  21. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

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    #22
    Anyone?
     
  22. peedub macrumors newbie

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    Apr 18, 2006
    #23
    you still need a dvi cable to connect the monitor to the adaptor. will definitely look better than using vga.
     
  23. Theclamshell macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2009
    #24
    I envy you for having the z 5500s i have x540s which dont have enough bass............
     
  24. Krafty thread starter macrumors 601

    Krafty

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2007
    Location:
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    #25
    Which cable would that be?
     

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