Engadget rips 2011 mini

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Tulpa, Jul 25, 2011.

  1. Tulpa macrumors regular

    May 11, 2011
    Oh boy, here we go. Another reviewer who appears to never have heard of an external DVD-RW drive gives the mini a 6/10 (for reference, the 2010 model got a 9/10 from engadget).

  2. profets macrumors 601

    Mar 18, 2009
    Read this earlier.. can't believe how bent out of shape they got about the lack of ODD. Even to suggest the 2010 is a better buy (a Core 2 Duo just to gain the ODD?)
  3. eoren1 macrumors 6502

    Aug 17, 2007
    and 'This is my next' gave it a 9/10

    From the same guy who wrote the engadget mini 2010 review ;)
  4. xamp macrumors newbie

    Nov 18, 2006
    Fwiw, in 2010 the mini was reviewed by Nilay Patel. Nilay is now over at ThisIsMyNext and he's reviewed the 2011 model, giving it a 9/10 again.

    I think the engadget reviewer was hung up on the lack of the superdrive, and over reacted in the review score.
  5. Tulpa thread starter macrumors regular

    May 11, 2011
    Yes, it's a different reviewer from the 2010 review, but this reviewer actually recommends getting a used 2010 mini rather than the new one (?!). So obviously he liked the 2010 mini.

    I mean, for some situations that's a good idea, but not for the general consumer.
  6. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    Ratings like that are silly and just plain dumb.
  7. nadaclue, Jul 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011

    nadaclue macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2011
    If you read the reviews the one that gave the 6/10 was just reviewing a base unit. And I can see some of his points with the sluggish hard drive and insufficient memory. His low score just wasn't for them dropping the optical drive.

    If you read the 9/10 review from "Thisismynext" he reviewed the $799 model, which has twice the memory, faster processor, and the AMD graphics. But he also dings Apple for the lack of optical drive.

    "And lastly, I can’t end this section without calling out the mini’s lack of an optical drive one more time."
  8. C64 macrumors 65816


    Sep 3, 2008
    I agree. Everyone has different needs. For some the new mini's might score a 6/10, for others a 10/10.

    The problem with most of these reviews is that the reviewers are already biased before they start, and then cherry pick positive and negative aspects to fit their predetermined conclusion.
  9. srf4real macrumors 68040


    Jul 25, 2006
    paradise beach FL
    It's all subjective. I'd give the mini a better score for dropping the odd out of a desktop in which small footprint/compact is the ultimate goal. +1 for offering the base model $100 cheaper again, +1 for providing upgradeable processor, disk, and memory options which put the new mini on par with 2011 Apple Macbook Pros.

    I would rate -1 for making an entry level user pay extra for the odd which is rarely used in most cases.. or -1 to pay extra for huge quick hdd, more ram and hyperfast cpu in the base model when Mail, Safari, iTunes, and iPhoto are likely to be the boundaries of its use..
  10. MacHamster68, Jul 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011

    MacHamster68 macrumors 68040


    Sep 17, 2009
    i too was shocked about the lack of a optical drive and a 5400rpm HDD in 2011 ,Apple seems to try to reinvent the netbox with this new Mini, ok the lack of a ODD is quiet handy if you want to store the mini out of sight behind your tv , but its sort of a disater if you want to play dvd's as there is no USB ODD that would even remotely match the design , and design is a big part in buying a Apple product
    ok one reason to get rid of the ODD was obviously cooling as now there is more room for air inside
  11. bruinsrme macrumors 603


    Oct 26, 2008
    I was looking forward to the new minimfor an iTunes server. However the lack of a SuperDrive detered my purchase. Purchasing an addition drive which introduces more cabling isn't whT I was hoping for.
    For some the lack of an OOD may work, I will more than likely end up picking up a core 2 unit
  12. JeepGuy macrumors regular

    Sep 24, 2008
    where did you see that?
    from ifixit
  13. srf4real macrumors 68040


    Jul 25, 2006
    paradise beach FL
    I'm talking cto upgrades, not diy. The 2010 mini gave, what an extra .5GHz bump as maxxed out performance.. the 2011 takes you from i5 dual to i7 quad for maximum bangage per buck when custom ordering. And SSD options. I much prefer the possibility of installing a second huge SSD when prices come down than being stuck with a stupid optical drive. Much less limitations for one like me who wants the tiny footprint and a capable workstation all in one. Of course my cto was $1600, but it is going to be bad ass. (for a mini) :D
  14. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    I don't understand how the mini could get more than 6/10 stars. I mean... how could it do better?

    Industrial design. 1 star that most PC boxes lack.
    OS X AND Windows. 1 star that PC boxes lack.

    Now, lets compare it to a PC box.
    Less upgradable. Minus a star.
    Overpriced for what's in it. Minus a star.
    Underspec'd for a 2011 computer. Minus another star.
    No ODD. Minus a star.
    Not easily upgradable. Minus a star.

    Assuming a computer starts with a 10/10 at baseline, a 6/10 sounds pretty solid to me. How many people are going to buy a Mac Mini because they can't fit a $300 slim mini-tower (your typical PC from Best Buy) on their desk. How many people aren't going to buy a mini because it doesn't play blu-ray or can't run their games.

    No, it's an overpriced, over-spec'd machine that's not good for much besides number crunching... if you can even install Office on it.
  15. Tilpots macrumors 601


    Apr 19, 2006
    Carolina Beach, NC
    You shouldn't buy the new mini just for use as an iTunes server. I'd spend much less and get a late 2009 Mini if thats your only intended purpose.
  16. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    Check out the MBA superdrive that they offer as an option. I'd say that matches decently, and even if you get that, you're still saving $20 off of last year's model, and you get better specs.
  17. Porco macrumors 68030


    Mar 28, 2005
    I'm far from being in the 'optical media is dead' camp, but the new mini is nice machine, and (the salient point IMHO) is cheaper by more than it costs to buy an external drive even if you want to buy your own (or don't have one in an older machine to use when necessary).

    A lot of people looking at the mini will either already have an older one, or be moving from a different computer - so the display/mouse/keyboard costs aren't always there.

    To me, the best thing about the mini is it's the entry-point for getting a brand new mac - and the lower that price is the better as far as I am concerned. Some people simply cannot afford to buy a more expensive computer, regardless of the value of various models. The mini is great for such people.
  18. killr_b, Jul 25, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011

    killr_b macrumors 6502a


    Oct 21, 2005
    One thing I wonder about is DVD Player.

    I'm fairly certain that Apple doesn't allow you to play retail DVD's from an external drive without an internal drive installed.

    You may have to edit
    and replace all instances of Internal (six(6) I think) with External.
    Repair permissions, unplug external drive, restart, replug external drive.

    Anyone know for sure?
  19. JeepGuy macrumors regular

    Sep 24, 2008
    Ok gotcha, the quad is very tempting, too bad it's only in the server, with a lessor graphics card.
  20. slyseekr macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2010
    Brooklyn, NY
    Absolutely, not true. I've played several DVD movies through my usb DVD drive (formerly a superdrive in my Macbook Pro -- subbed out for an OWC-optibay SSD) on my i5 mini.
  21. bruinsrme macrumors 603


    Oct 26, 2008
    I will take a look at that option.
  22. tom vilsack macrumors 68000

    tom vilsack

    Nov 20, 2010
    ladner cdn
    at first no dvd made no sense...but as apple wants everyone going to app store,buying online music,movies (hulu,netflix takeover?) it makes perfect sense.....

  23. spongeweed macrumors newbie

    Feb 24, 2005
    I was initially excited about a new mini, until I noticed NO OPTICAL DRIVE. I just ordered a 2010 from amazon warehouse for $515.00.
  24. nsxrox macrumors member

    Apr 29, 2010
    Tampa, FL
    Remember the 3.5" diskette?

    Everyone was shocked when Apple put out the 1st iMac without a 3.5" diskette drive. Doesn't seem like a big deal now, but it was back then. I like the idea that Apple is starting to move away from physical media. DVDs are starting to feel like old media. Think of all the additional battery space that would be freed up from ripping the SuperDrive out of the MacBook Pros.
  25. JamSandwich macrumors regular

    May 19, 2006
    I totally understand the review and docking the score based on the absence of the optical drive. I don't know that it deserved quite the downgrade it got based on that issue (to me it reads like an 8 review outside of that complaint... in my mind it's maybe a one-point deduction in a world where external drives exist).

    I bit the bullet, buying the i5/Radeon model and the optical drive was a little bit of a disappointment for me. Still, I think the Superdrive is relatively reasonably priced (so I bought it), and there appear to be other options on the market that are more affordable, too... for us it's essential.

    We may not be huge DVD fans, but we have a big library yet to rip :)

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