Is a Mac Mini sufficient to tide over from '07 MBP?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by GavWhite, Jan 4, 2012.

  1. GavWhite, Jan 4, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2012

    GavWhite macrumors newbie

    Jul 16, 2011
    So here's my situation: I've currently got a 15" MacBook Pro, Late 2007, 2.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo. For most things, this is perfectly fine -- I can browse the web, check e-mail, manage an iTunes library, etc. But I do some small video work for a high school marching band program I work for, and I constantly have to deal with sluggish rendering, playback, etc. in Final Cut Pro 7 and Adobe After Effects, and slow load times for high-res Photoshop and Illustrator projects. Sometimes, full renders can take nearly a day, and my MBP just misses the cut for Compressor 4 (as well as FCPX and Motion 5) system requirements.

    I don't currently have a full-time teaching job, and once I do, I'll probably pick up a high end iMac or -- if they actually update it -- a Mac Pro. Until then, I've begun work on more video projects for the marching program, and the time it takes to render, compress, playback, etc. is still frustrating.

    I'm considering a Mac Mini to tide me over (I already use an external 23" with the MBP anyway). I know it's the low-end of Apple desktops, but do you think it would be enough of an upgrade over a '07 15" MBP to warrant at least $600? Is an i5 and perhaps an additional memory upgrade to it going to be that noticeable an improvement over the Core 2 Duo-powered MBP I've got? I can technically afford the i7 one, but I'm hesitant since I'm hoping to get a job and a full blown iMac or Mac Pro within a year or so.
  2. AdrianK macrumors 68020

    Feb 19, 2011
    The upgrade to an i5 from your Core2Duo will be a big step up (just under twice the CPU performance), personally I'd get that rather than the i7 as it's just a tide-you-over machine.
  3. Angelo95210 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2009
    Paris, France
    If it is a temporary buy (for one year) I think you will do well with a mac mini. If you plan to use FCPX an i7 will be welcome in the future as it takes benefit of the multiple cores.
  4. GavWhite thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 16, 2011
    Thanks for the quick responses!

    I didn't realize the i5 was that much of an improvement. As long a dual-core i5 can handle Final Cut Pro X (or even FCP7) significantly better than my Core2Duo can handle FCP7, I'll probably get the base model, and then upgrade the memory on my own. I wouldn't need the i7 in the Mac Mini unless FCPX really needs it to run smoothly, or if I expected to use it as my primary machine beyond this fall. (I'll probably keep it, but just as a secondary once I get an iMac or Mac Pro.)

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