$899 Mac mini fit my needs?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by zero2krazy, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. zero2krazy macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2009
    27 year old college senior who rarely plays desktop games (HL2, & Skyrim mainly). Use my ailing PC to surf internet, watch movies, type papers (power point etc), and maintain my iTunes music, movie, and tv show collection.

    The fact I can use my current set up makes me lean towards the Mac mini and upgrading either the processor or the ram (I assume you can't do this yourself) but I have never owned a brand new computer of any kind so I'm not sure what kind of performance I'd be gaining by getting a refurb 2011 iMac or if a 2012 iMac 21.5 would be overkill for my needs.

    Already have an external 2 TB hard drive, 21.5 inch monitor, stereo hooked up, keyboard, mouse, and plan on buying optical drive for Mac mini.

    Also I have $850 cash in hand which makes me lean towards the Mac mini since its cost is so close.

  2. icecoldart macrumors member


    Mar 30, 2012
    Ppick the upgraded processor option in a mini if you want it to last a little longer, you can upgrade the ram and hdd by yourself at much lower cost.

    There's a dozen of movies on youtube showing how to do that.

    good luck!
  3. MacWanter macrumors member

    Oct 23, 2012
    I think this should be in the mac mini discussion...But yes, if you won't be playing games often, and more of using internet and iTunes, the mac mini is a great choice. ;) Upgrading the mac mini is easier than the new iMacs coming out, so if it starts to get old, you can probably upgrade it for cheap to have it last another year or so.
  4. CIA macrumors 6502a

    Jun 17, 2003
    If you aren't doing any heavy lifting (and you would probably know if you were) the Mini will work fine as a general use machine for several years. Get the best options you can now as it will extend your machine usability life a little longer. I paid top dollar for the high end 2007 iMac when it first came out, and finally this upgrade cycle have decided it's time to get a new machine. Friends who got the bottom tier model that year have long since bought new machines.
    Also buy ram from somewhere else. You can get a 16GB kit from Newegg for only $67, hundreds less then Apple. (or a 8GB kit for about half that)

    If you have all the other stuff you need already (Monitor, keyboard etc) then it's going to be a solid replacement.
  5. zero2krazy thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2009
    Well that pretty much pushes me over the edge to buy the 2012 Mac mini with the upgraded processor. Would watching ram & hdd upgrade videos on an 2011 Mac mini be comparable on what to expect with the new model?
  6. CIA macrumors 6502a

    Jun 17, 2003
    Yea, the internal layout is more or less the same.
    Get whatever HD you think will work for your needs. Regardless of the new fancy HD options (Fusion Drive) remember now that the mini has USB 3 a cheap external will work great for large storage if you need it.

    If you really are just using this for "general" use, I suggest just bumping the processor and leaving everything else stock.
    Get 8 or 16GB of RAM from Newegg (easy to install) and if you find you need more space down the line get a big cheap external USB 3 hard drive.
  7. iamthedudeman, Oct 25, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2012

    iamthedudeman macrumors 65816

    Jul 7, 2007
    The mac mini is not really 'mini' in power. For 899, you can get a 2.6 I7 that is faster than all imacs except for the 27 i7, and that is even up for debate. I was quite suprised on the Mac mini refresh. Why would Apple put better processors in the mid range and server as standard issue than the stock imacs?

    I ordered a 2012 mini with 2.6 i7 , 256 SSD, crucial ram 16GB for $80.00. That machine is faster than any 2011 imac and as fast as the i7 2012 imac 27. Lookup the benchmarks for the retina MBP which has the same processor the 2.6 i7.

    Maybe the question is are the imacs as fast as the minis?



    leaked imac 2012 benchmark 32 bit.

    2.6 retina 32 bit.

  8. kdoug macrumors 6502a


    Jun 2, 2010
    Iowa City, IA USA
    I just sold my 2.3 MacBook Pro Retina and ordered the same thing. Was waiting for the new iMac but I'm not thrilled with the design. The mini with the 2.6 i7 seems like a bargain especially with $80 16gb RAM and $300 IPS HDMI monitors.

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