Help me decide between these two setups!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by jamdr, May 17, 2005.

  1. jamdr macrumors 6502a


    Jul 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    Okay, which one is the better and why:

    1.42 GHz Mac Mini + 20" Apple Cinema Display = $1278 (EDU)
    1.8 GHz iMac G5 = $1200 (EDU)

    Note that I'd also have to get more memory for the Mac Mini, but I probably wouldn't get anymore for the iMac. I like the Mac Mini option because I could keep the display and upgrade just the computer later for very cheap. However, the initial investment would be more. Also, I HATE the look of the iMac G5. Please help convince me which is better.
  2. Phat_Pat macrumors 68000


    May 8, 2004
    I Live Where I Live
    The iMac has a G5 while the Mac Mini currently doesn't.

    The iMac comes with 512 MB of RAM. THe Mac mini.... 256.

    iMac has a bigger Hard Drive (160 vs 40)

    iMac has a better graphics Card (128 MB vs 32)

    go with the iMac.... it sexy looking too. ;)

    Theres alot more but... well yeah
  3. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    The only benefit from getting the mini is if you want to upgrade to a PowerMac later on, you'll have a gorgeous 20 inch screen already. But I'd go for the iMac personally. Actually, change that. I am going for the iMac, and chucking my money just below my nose. ;)

    That's my mouth BTW.
  4. BKKloppenborg macrumors regular

    May 2, 2005
    La Mesa, Ca
    i would get the imac because of what Phat_Pat said.. Anyone know if screen got better then they were i remember they were to dark and bad 3 years ago..
  5. gamestriker macrumors regular

    Dec 18, 2004
    iMac. Far more powerful than the Mac mini, and serve you much better, especially with Tiger. (Mac mini still does not fully support Tiger i.e. Core Image, and you can barely run a few programs on Tiger without some lag on 256M RAM as it is. The 512 will make a major difference.)
  6. MrCommunistGen macrumors regular


    Mar 14, 2004
    "Wherever you go, there you are..."
    iMac for sure

    The iMac is faster in every way... Higher clocked processor, G5 instead of G4, Radeon 9600 graphics as opposed to Radeon 9200 (important for Quartz in Tiger err something like that... I've got a G3 iMac so I really don't keep up with that kind of stuff), and aside from having a larger HD, its faster too! The mini's have a 4200RPM 2.5" laptop hard drive, the iMac has a 7200RPM 3.5" desktop HD. The iMac also has 2 ram slots to the mini's 1. That means that when you upgrade the mini's memory you have to take out the old stick and find something to do with it (collect dust? :( )

    Then again, as you mentioned, if you upgrade you dont get to use the monitor... If speed is you're main concern, go for the iMac. If being able to use the monitor with a later computer is important go for the mini. Honestly, I feel that if you go for the mini you'd be upgrading sooner than if you got the iMac. Also, if you were to get the iMac, by the time you would replace it (in 2+ years I'm assuming) the price of a 20" LCD will have come down a lot anyway. When the 23" first came out it was like $3500, more than the top of the line G4, now a couple years later its $1500.

    In the end, its your money and therefore your choice. i hope I've helped you and not made things more difficult.

    Good Luck with your choice!

    Edit: that quartz thing i mentioned is Core Image in Tiger
  7. iJaz macrumors 6502a


    Dec 16, 2004
    iMac! :D
    As have already been said, you'll get much more computer for your money!
    If you want to upgrade to a PowerMac later, I guess you'll get good money for your iMac. The prices for used Macs are usually quite high. And by that time the LCD prices will probably have gone down.
  8. russed macrumors 68000


    Jan 16, 2004
    yeh i think as the general pattern is emerging - its a bit of a no brainer! get the iMac!

    i think it should last quite a while so there wont be any need to upgrade soon with that!
  9. ZLurker macrumors regular

    Apr 25, 2005
    Hi there!
    Greetings from Lund. Since i prob. dont need the pci slots your iMac is my biggest contender for my upcoming buy of a PM. What did you pay in sek, for the whole kit?
  10. SpaceMagic macrumors 68000


    Oct 26, 2003
    Cardiff, Wales
    The iMac. No contest.

    Believe it or not the iMac takes up less desk space too - as you've just got the screen's stand and the keyboard/mouse. The Mac mini will have itself, the external fair sized power brick, And the 20" Apple Cinema Display stand.

    You'll learn to love the way the iMac looks ;)

    It's also a hella lot better machine.
  11. Passante macrumors 6502a


    Apr 16, 2004
    on the sofa
    Check out this Barefeats speed test

    While it didn't test the mini, I think the mini is very close to an iMac G4.

    I'd get the G5 iMac unless your planning to replace the mini un a year or so.
  12. wdlove macrumors P6


    Oct 20, 2002
    I would also recommend the iMac G5. As mentioned it has the better technology. It also looks very cool.
  13. noel4r macrumors 6502a

    Jul 17, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Well, if you think you'll upgrade within a year, I say just get mac mini and a separate monitor. You will also save around $300.00 if you dont mind getting a 20" Dell LCD instead. Said LCD will still be usable when you upgrade to that Powermac (you know you want to) in a couple of years.... ;)

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