cMBP 2012 or Mac Mini 2012

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by addictive, Mar 14, 2016.

  1. addictive macrumors regular

    Jul 6, 2008
    I'm using a Macbook unibody from 2008 upgraded to 1TB SSD and 8GB RAM. However, I'm finding it is becoming unresponsive and things are starting to not work as well as they used to (i.e speaker and USB port).

    I'm considering buying a used Mac Mini from 2012 and replacing the HDD with my SSD and maxing out the RAM. Or buying a Macbook Pro classic - not the Retina - which would allow me to take the HDD out and replace it with my SSD. I could even remove the optical drive and put in a second SSD. Both machines have USB 3.0 and a SD card reader which my 2008 Macbook does not.
    In Apple's refurb store the price of a Refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro 2.5GHz Dual-core Intel i5 is £759.00. This seems expensive for a refurb machine plus one with several years old internals.
    The Mac Mini from 2012 could likely be had for half the price from eBay or somewhere. I'm guessing I would use the cMBP closed for the most part attaching to an external monitor. However, the cMBP having a display means I could use it as a portable. Something I can't do with the Mac Mini.

    My needs are modest and while I spend a lot of time working on my Mac I don't tend to do processor intensive stuff. I will likely buy a Retina screen laptop in the near future but if you've got advice on whether I should go for cMBP or Mac Mini or neither do let me know.

    Any suggestions?
  2. Radriar macrumors newbie


    Mar 13, 2016
    Depending if you already have a portable device (i.e a iPad, another laptop or similar device) and if you currently use your cMBP frequently out of the house, I would likely go with the mac mini if I had to chose out of the two as then you would have both a desktop and laptop if you are likely to purchase a rMBP.

    I would however suggest to wait until you get a rMBP of which will be able to outperform both macs easily and offer an overall more polished experience, the only problem being you would not be able to use your 1TB SSD unless you purchased a external case and used it that way with the rMBP.

    Another note, if you do purchase the 2012 mac mini I would not suggest maxing out its ram and instead opting for either 4gb or 8gb of ram for daily tasks with 8gb being optimal unless you plan to model in CAD, Photoshop etc and more likely to not change the overall performance of the machine.

    All the best
  3. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    If buying a cMBP buy secondhand you can pick them up fairly cheap these days, Apple still sell them new at an outrageous price for 4 year old tech so their refurb are still expensive.

    To be honest if you need some portability then the cMBP is your only option, I personally would stick my files on that SSD in a SATA enclosure and get a retina MBP.
  4. McScooby macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2005
    The Paps of Glenn Close, Scotland.
    I've got both, purchased from the Refurb store, just over a year ago. £759 for the mb seems "expensive" but in my case I upgraded to 16GB ram & chucked in a 850 pro 1TB, although if doing it again would get the 2TB pro. When you add on the extras, it easily hands down beats a max spec on a newer mb, plus I've got the consolation if anything fails, just replace it, hell even got applecare for it recently. Compared to the newer mb's sure it may pale in comparison, but considering I was forced to upgrade my 2006 white mb which is still working (also purchased refurb), as had a 17" that bricked before Apple decided to replace the gfx card, I just wish I'd done it sooner.
    I think the integrated graphics will be first to show it's age, but with El Cap, it's bumped to 1.5GB vram so maybe last a wee bit longer.
    Got both for different reasons, mini plugged permanently to TV (Got 2TB i7 server version for £699, they do occasionally pop up) & macbook screen shares to it, MB certainly isn't as fast, but tbh, hardly ever notice.
    As for eBay, just remember when buying, there's maybe not a warranty.

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