iPad or Hackintosh Dell Mini


macrumors regular
Original poster
May 30, 2009
I've played with the iPad and was amazed, but the a Hackintosh Dell Mini can "do more" I suppose and just want to get the opinion of some new iPad owners...should I buy the iPad or Dell Mini?


macrumors newbie
Mar 7, 2010
San Francisco
I made my girlfriend a dell mini hackintosh for her birthday in December and got myself an iPad this Saturday. It goes without saying she is beyond jealous of my iPad. I wouldn't trade it for her mini in a million years. (although the hackintosh is pretty sweet, it's just not as as *magical* as an iPad)

(Also we both have macbooks as our main notebooks)


macrumors 68030
Apr 10, 2003
A hot desert
I've played with the iPad and was amazed, but the a Hackintosh Dell Mini can "do more" I suppose and just want to get the opinion of some new iPad owners...should I buy the iPad or Dell Mini?
I have a hackintoshed mini 9. I've used the iPad more in three days than the mini 9 in six months. Flash on the mini sucks under windows and is unusable under os x. The screen is low res and can't compete with the iPad.

Thie keyboard when using the apple case is maybe a touch less accurate than the mini 9 but typing speed is faster due to the small and strange layout on the mini 9. The battery life on the iPad is way better. I do however think that the apple case is necessary to make it a net book replacement and you will have to spend a bit more on a few apps id think. I bought winadmin for rdc,newsrack for rss and use a few free apps.

Fwiw I have a windows 7 server. Hp media smart whs. Mbp. Dell mini 9. iPad. iPhone. Linux and apple routers. Just pointing that out to combat any ideas I'm some sort of rabid brand loyalist. I personally believe that the iPad is superior to my mini 9 w/ 64 gig runcore ssd and my recently sold eepc.

One factor that you shouldn't underestimate is footprint and speed of access.

I'm sure others have a diff opinion but having used net books for the last year and hacking the mini 9, i definitely think the 32 gig ipad beats it in functionality, although its not without shortcomings - some of which will no doubt be remedied this summer with os 4.


macrumors regular
Jan 6, 2009
I've played with the iPad and was amazed, but the a Hackintosh Dell Mini can "do more" I suppose and just want to get the opinion of some new iPad owners...should I buy the iPad or Dell Mini?
as someone who has both (hacked mini 9 w. 10.5.8), i'd have to say that the iPad wins hands down, based solely on performance. while i've always loved and admired what the mini was capable of, especially for the price, there is no comparison.

the ipad is significantly faster, easier to use, and more functional since certain tasks are poorly executed on the mini. i think that os x is just too much program for the mini to handle at an acceptable level for a power user. still functional, but i would rather have the iPad.

for "lifestyle" computing (email, photos, movies, web browsing) the iPad is the best product on the market. but that's for my needs. if you need it to "do more" as you say (i'm assuming word processing, flash, ability to use some sort of file management) you would be better off with something else.


macrumors 68000
Jul 3, 2009
I have both, and I vote iPad. It's easier to work with and it is much much much easier to see.


macrumors regular
Original poster
May 30, 2009
thanks for the advice everyone...my biggest question with a hackintosh dell mini was performance, I'd heard it wasn't great, especially watching things like netflix and hulu, but from what I've seen, Netflix runs great on the iPad and I think we all know Hulu's appearance in the App Store isn't far behind. I think the extra cash for an iPad in the end will pay for itself in ease of use and performance.

And also, thanks for the pro tip about the Apple case, I'm planning on taking some notes in class with this thing and a little stand is just what I need


macrumors 6502a
Sep 19, 2008
I have a mini 10v hackintosh and I haven't turned it on in months. The only reason I got it was for a couch surfer. I never did anything on it that I can't do on my iPad. iPad wins hands down.


macrumors newbie
Jun 10, 2010
sorry disagree with the trend.....

I've played with the iPad and was amazed, but the a Hackintosh Dell Mini can "do more" I suppose and just want to get the opinion of some new iPad owners...should I buy the iPad or Dell Mini?
While I don't disagree that the Ipad is the flavor of the month with better screen resolution being 1024x768 - The OSX 10.6.3 mini is my fav.

Why you may ask well it's fast - everything works including the inbuilt 3G card, has USB ports and SD slot. And I find the Ipad to limiting yes the display is totally gorgeous but I find the typing a pain (and that's saying something cos the mini 9 is not exactly brilliant) and I just find the mini so versatile - plus I can actually use it for skype!!! In Ausi Hulu is a no go (not allowed) but the Ausi foxtel works fine (under win 7 yuk OSX not supported) Which is another plus with the mini - heck I can run another another OS if I needed to!!!!


macrumors 68020
May 26, 2006
New York, Baby!
iPad. I had a hacked Dell mini, and really, the iPad is the complementary mobile device that I wanted.

It syncs with my main computer, iTunes doesn't seem as resource intensive as it is on the Dell mini so video plays really smoothly. I am just about used to the keyboard on here and think I can actually type faster on here than I did on the mini. Books are a joy to read, I tried on the mini but having the physical keyboard made me less inclined to sit back and read on it.


macrumors 68030
Nov 27, 2007
I went through three hackintosh net books at various stages and got rid of them all. Reasons were,
- terrible trackpad, I developed tendonitis using them on couches
- pathetic battery life
- tiny screen, cannot zoom in like the iPad
- too much maintenance with the OS hacking and software upgrade, never 100% reliable, you never know when a problem may arise, like in the middle of a trip
- problem with sleep and wake, Bluetooth pairing after sleep
- zero warranty and support
- no 3G
I will never go back to the hackintosh road.


macrumors 68020
Oct 18, 2009
Belfast, Ireland
"The problem is, netbooks aren't better at anything! They're slow, they have low quality displays and they run clunky old PC software. So they're not better than a laptop at anything, they're just cheaper. They're just cheaper laptops."

-Steve, at the iPad keynote


macrumors 68040
Mar 3, 2008
I own an Acer Aspire One. I have Ubuntu 9.10 on it. I haven't touched it since getting my iPad. I thought about hackintoshing it but not since I got my iPad. I should mention that I still use my Macbook regularly. There are times it is worth the hike down to the basement to do some typing. I have RemoteTap on the iPad but rarely use it. Perhaps when RemoteTap becomes native for iPad, I might find I have to take that walk less often. But 99.9 percent of the time, I'm checking email, looking things up on the web and reading ebooks on my iPad.

If I had to choose an iPad plus some pc or Mac versus only one machine, I might consider a hackintosh netbook. But as long as you have a desktop of some sort go for the iPad.


macrumors regular
Aug 10, 2008
London, UK
I have an Advent 4211 (MSI Wind clone) running OSX (10.6.2) and haven't touched it in months! Even before I got the iPad the netbook was gathering dust lol The iPad wins in every way, especially battery life, display, weight and stability!


macrumors 601
Jan 11, 2007
North Central Florida
I offered to buy a mini & hackintosh it for my daughter last JULY.

She played with it at Sam's club, said she'd rather keep her busted 6yo 12" iBook (thinks it is 1970 most of the time) and wait and see what Apple came out with at the end of the year per the rumors.

Then when the iPad came out, she chose that instead of the mini again.

You couldn't pry it out of her hands! LOL!!


macrumors 6502
May 12, 2005
Cheshire, UK
Had a Dell Mini9 for use when travelling etc. Turned it into a Hackintosh, then installed Vista. Looked lovely and was OK, but only ever used it when away with work or on holiday.

Heard the iPad was on its way and put the Dell on eBay, basically boxed and as new.

Dell sale went towards the iPad. Used the Dell Mini9 for a number of days in total over it's ownership... Use of iPad easily beats the Dell !


May 3, 2010
My wifes' friend got the Dell over the holidays and my wife hinted heavily (I already planned to get her the iPad). I was underwhelmed by the Dell (as was my wife after she actually used it) and my wife now thinks her iPad is the greatest thing ever.

Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
Netbooks are a "jack-of-all-trades, master of none." I hackintoshed a Lenovo for kicks. It was a nice "experiment" but the machine itself wasn't all that comfortable to use -- kind of like a "one size fits all" hat.

The iPad does less, but what it does, it does well. That said the iPad is not meant to be a laptop replacement. It's a category of it's own. I still use my MBP just as much as I did before my iPad, but I don't bring my MBP on trips as much.


macrumors member
Apr 3, 2008
iPad hands down! The lil hackentoshes are nice and all but cannot compare to the iPad imho.:)


macrumors 6502a
Apr 7, 2007
I have both and the Mini 9 Hackintosh works well with 2 gigs of ram...so it's fine if that's what someone wants, but since I got my iPad I haven't turned it on.


macrumors 65816
Jan 18, 2008
Dell Mini 9 hackintosh was sick for like the first week or so.

Then you realize what a piece of crap a netbook is.

Average screen (nowhere NEAR as beautiful as iPad's), cramped keyboard (the only benefit of that is that I type pretty fast on my iPad because I was used to such cramped keys), horrendous battery life (3.5 hours TOPS versus 10+ hours), inability to watch anything higher than standard def video really sucks.

It gets hot quickly, and it's just impractical overall. I used mine to take some notes in class, it was okay for that, but other than that, it stayed on my desk collecting dust. iPad + keyboard is going to be a much more intuitive way of doing things, and I won't have to worry about running down the battery.

Dell Mini 9 has no 3G or wireless-N and it doesn't have any more capacity than an iPad. On my 16GB drive, about 6-8 was used up for OS X alone...leaving 8-10. Compare that to iPad...on the 16GB model, you'll have like 13 or 14 free (the rest is taken up...OS, caches, etc).

Did I mention the iPad is easier to use overall? You just pop the home button and there you are. Netbook needs to boot and load up, and you have to use the tiny trackpad (you get the whole screen to touch on iPad...multi-touch ftw - closest thing I got to MT on my Mini 9 was two finger scroll).

Get the iPad, you won't regret it. Yes it doesn't do flash and yes there are no native apps like PS/Word, etc...but honestly, more and more apps are coming out that make using a computer secondary. Only time I touch my Mac these days is for hardcore tasks like encoding/remuxing/Photoshop, everything else I can do on my iPad. :)


macrumors 6502a
Oct 5, 2007
Liverpool, UK
I have both, both have their strengths.

The Dell mini 10v and iPad. Personally I'd probably use the iPad more, but the Dell does do some tasks like torrents mostly, and playing a few videos as I can't be bothered converting them.

iPad is a lot more easy to use day to day, the netbook seems a bit uncomfortable.