Advice on media centre setup using 2010 macMini or 2009 refurb iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by michelob tfs, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. michelob tfs macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2010
    Location:
    Falkirk, Scotland
    #1
    Hi, I'm trying to move away from the world of PCs towards an Apple set up and am having trouble deciding what would be best for my media center setup in my kitchen/family room.

    Currently I've got a dell hybrid pc hooked up to my 37" HDTV in the family area using HDMI and a 24" inch dell HD monitor in the kitchen area on the breakfast bar connected via a rather long HDMI cable. The setup in the kitchen area is not ideal because the sound is still coming from the pc speakers in the family area I'm looking to change because a) the celeron processor and integrated graphics in my hybrid is no longer up to it for things such as iPlayer and NFL Gamepass b) I'm sick to death of windows and especially vista. As an iPhone user over the last 3 years I've been contemplating moving this way.

    I'm trying to decide between the following 2 setups and am wondering which would be better.

    A) I buy a 2010 Mini and hook up to the HDTV via HDMI and hook up the Dell monitor via a mini displayport to HDMI adaptor and long HDMI cable.

    Pro's (as I see it):
    Lower cost of machine (but potentially mini is a bit overpriced for what you get)
    Might be sufficent for my needs ?
    Lower footprint.

    Con's:
    Sound still just coming from over where the HDTV is in family area
    MacMini maybe fairly slow win comparison to iMac

    B) I get one of the currently great value 27" late 2009 refurb iMac's instead and connect to my HDTV via mini displayport to HDMI adaptor and long HDMI cable. I keep the dell monitor connected to my old pc for use in another room.

    Pro's:
    I'm getting a more powerful computer with a core i5/i7 processor that can drive dual displays and multitask better. (I'm looking ot keep iTunes constantly active streaming music via airport express while streaming HD from internet)
    Sound options will now be from iMac unit itself (how good is this for sound or do people tend to use external speakers for music/video) and my HDTV.

    Con's
    It costs a few hundred more but I'm potentially getting more bang for my buck.

    I honestly am torn on which setup to pursue but I know I want it in place before the NFL season starts. Any opinions/adivce or pointing out of the potential flaws in my setup would be gratefully recieved.

    Thanks
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #2
    You can get dual audio from Mini so if the Dell has speakers, the sound will come from both. You may need a 3.5mm splitter though (not sure can you output via HDMI and MDP, but possibly). I would get Mini unless you have use for the iMac and its screen, it's pretty big to just be around
     

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