Mac Mini Alternative: Alienware Alpha

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by venom600, Nov 24, 2014.

  1. venom600 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #1
    Alienware released the first in what's sure to be a long series of Steam OS boxes designed to function as consoles that sit below the TV. Since Steam OS isn't out yet, it comes with Windows. It also serves as a reminder of what Apple could deliver if they made the Mini slightly taller (they share virtually the same footprint).

    It's small, silent, runs dual code i3 and quad core i5 and i7 desktop processors, all while having GeForce GTX 860m graphics, and EASY upgradability. It's literally everything the Mac Mini could and should be but isn't. Oh, it costs virtually the same as the Mini. Why can't or won't Apple build this?
     
  2. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
  3. david2 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2014
    #3
    Thanks for the heads up about the Alpha. I've been waiting for it to be released because I'm interested in Steam Machines; I hope at least one of them will be a worthy successor to the 2012 Mac mini.

    According to the Alpha's manual, it's very user-serviceable, which you pointed out. And I just read at PCWorld, Gizmodo, and elsewhere that the Alpha is very quiet, which you also pointed out. Noise is the main reason why I disregarded the quad-core Brix.

    If Steam Machines are powerful, user-serviceable, and quiet, I'll definitely get one.
     
  4. david2 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2014
    #4
    Would it clash with your home's decor? Not match your drapes? That would be totally unfabulous.
     
  5. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #5
    This is an apple forum. You're definitely posting at the wrong site if you don't care what your computer/phone/tablet looks like. It's been a focal point of the company for almost its entire existence.

    And again, that thing looks like total crap in my opinion.
     
  6. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Location:
    United States
    #6
    Apple's computers are hardly pretty. They are just what people have become used to. They are somewhat sleek. And perhaps stylish to a degree of acceptability. But they hardly are pretty enough that I'd buy them on looks alone.

    I've had tons of Apple products since the Apple II. And I've never purchased them because of their looks. And their appearance has never factored into my decisions.

    The Steam machine is intended to sit and blend in with your television accessories. And it's appearance lends to that. It is roughly comparable in appearance to the Nintendo Wii and AppleTV.

    Apple's looks will not carry it any better in the long run than a pretty girl's looks will when she has a terrible attitude.

    Poor designs, less than competitive specs, and high prices for subpar technology will undermine their looks the same way that a terrible personality will make a supermodel unattractive.

    The truth is, even Apple fanatics will buy a Steam machine if they find that the new Macs don't meet their needs or value for price.

    I just setup a butt ugly Compaq after years of buying Macs. Why? Because it was cheaper, more Stable, faster, and gets the task done. It meets all my goals and saved me a ton of money over buying a lesser spec Mac with a less than impressive current generation OS.

    And you want to hear the really funny part? Apple will support my less expensive Compaq with latest version Apple software longer than they will their own Macintosh computers.

    The value of a pretty face fades faster than the value of functionality. Give me an ugly computer or woman any day over one that is pretty but has no value beyond appearances.
     
  7. corvus32 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #7
    Because, with their customers, they can skimp on the GPU and other goodies, charge 2x more, and use that money to branch out into watchmaking and build a spaceship campus.
     
  8. venom600 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #8
    It sure as hell ain't pretty (though some of Alienware's other stuff looks FAR worse...), but that's not the point here. The point is to show just how much Apple's design philosophy of thinner is better all the time at any expense is costing us as consumers. With minimal changes in size, you go from an unupgradable, dual core nightmare to full desktop processors and a powerful discrete graphics card.
     
  9. lowendlinux Contributor

    lowendlinux

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2014
    Location:
    North Country (way upstate NY)
    #9
    It's a mobile GPU and not MXM slotted so it's not upgradable nor desktop. It's a neat machine seems to be well thought through it just needs to loose the alien head on the front.
     
  10. slenpree macrumors 6502a

    slenpree

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    UK
  11. indychris macrumors 6502

    indychris

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2010
    Location:
    Fort Wayne, IN
    #11
    I'd have to agree. It's a black box with a corner cut off, made apparently of cheap, shiny plastic. Even if it ran Mac OS, there's no way that thing ever makes it into my living room. It's like there was an alien invasion at the Kaaba. :p
     
  12. Crosscreek macrumors 68030

    Crosscreek

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2013
    Location:
    Margarittaville
    #12
    I agree with all of you and I like it. If Apple doesn't start taking care of the Mac Mini people they are going to loose out to machines like this. I guess Dell engineers are better than Apple when it comes to designing small quite quads.

    Of coarse Apple watch is the future. :rolleyes:
     
  13. david2 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2014
    #13
    https://www.apple.com/mac-pro/

    What model TV do you own? I'm in the market for a plastic-free TV.
     
  14. david2 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2014
    #14
    I don't care about the appearance of my tools, including my hand tools, power tools, and computers. I just want a powerful, reliable, quiet, user-serviceable SFF computer than runs Unix. The 2012 Mac mini was better than the alternatives I evaluated (e.g., Intel NUC). I think the 2014 Mac mini is a downgrade, and I don't want to build a mini-ITX PC, so I'm interested in new alternatives such as Steam Machines.
     
  15. scottsjack macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2010
    Location:
    Arizona
    #15
    Exactly. If someone wants an art object then just buy the cheapest of whatever junk Apple sells. Both the base mini and the base iMac look great but are crap in my eye. Great looking computers never have worked better because of their great looks.
     
  16. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Location:
    Hartford, CT
    #16
    Where is the market demand for it? :rolleyes:
     
  17. venom600 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #17
    I didn't mean the graphics card was upgradable. I meant that the HD is and so is the RAM. And as for it being a mobile GPU... it's a faster GPU than anything Apple puts into any machine south of the $2000 iMac.

    I'm betting that you're the type of person that would go house hunting and write off an otherwise perfect house because you don't like the paint and knobs in the kitchen. The looks are irrelevant to the point.... Apple could easily make it look like a million bucks.

    Please, spare me. I'm not asking for them to build a Mac Pro and price it at $499. I'm asking why they insist on compromising what could be a stellar product in the name of a a couple of inches when it's clear that they can do better. If we don't demand better, they will never deliver it.
     
  18. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #18
    For better or worse, Apple isn't marketing to you.

    I know people won't like to hear this, but if Apple adopted the "I don't care what it looks like" philosophy, they'd probably be out of business within 10 years.

    Jony Ive is a very rich man (and a household name) for good reason. Trust me, all those college kids toting around macbook pros and macbook airs don't give 2 craps about OS X.
     
  19. grandM macrumors 6502a

    grandM

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2013
    #19
    I guess many would buy a mini with an good i7 processor, decent graphics card which could be upgraded by ourselves ;) Just visit the mac mini forum :p
     
  20. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Location:
    United States
    #20
    Hardly a household name. Only MR readers have his name memorized. And even I wouldnt associate his name with anyone if it was randomly said outside the context of Mac Rumors.

    I could just about guarantee that in my state, I would have to go door to door and in the whole state might find 1 person who knew who he was by name alone. Most likely I wouldnt even find 1.

    He's not relevant to people's daily lives. The cashier at the local store is a bigger household name to most normal people.

    ----------

    Yeah, me too.... I want an aluminum TV like the mac lineup. That way I can get dents in it and have the paint wear off when I wipe the dust off of it. You know, silly me thought my Mac Pro was aluminum. Then I took a rag dampened with water to wipe off the dust and had the silver wipe away to reveal black. Guess it's metal or aluminum with aluminum colored paint to make it pretty.

    I'll take the cheap plastic any day. It's more durable. Even on a computer, I'd rather have cheap that ages well instead of shiny that is delicate and gets damaged easier.
     
  21. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #21
    LOL. You either know who he is or you don't. There's some kind of underlying neurological issue going on if you can only recognize names when they are said in certain contexts.
     
  22. flyinmac macrumors 68030

    flyinmac

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Location:
    United States
    #22
    I would have. I was only waiting for improved minis to be released. Finally they released the new minis with a downgrade instead of upgrade. So Compaq got my money instead.

    I waited 2 years. And they released that crap? The 2012 model was almost adequate for what I needed. The 2014 model was not even as good. Therefore I spent my money where I could get what I needed at a better price.

    Windows machines will be finding a lot of switchers from Mac with the way Apple is going.

    ----------

    Actually, it is quite common that people better recognize certain less important details when they are presented in context.
     
  23. Tough Guy macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    #23
    It really isn't.

    I'm not even joking, it actually is a sign of a severe neurological disorder if you rely on context to recognize someone's name, given the fact you admitted to me that you know who he is. That's not something that a normal person forgets.

    Now if you happen to know several people with the name Jony Ive, then context matters. Otherwise, it's completely irrelevant.

    I'm pretty sure you were exaggerating, but if you were sincere I would get checked by a doctor ASAP. Forgetting names is the earliest symptom of many neurological issues.
     
  24. grandM macrumors 6502a

    grandM

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2013
    #24
    It's clear that apple seems to want every pence we've got. Honestly if I wasn't learning iOS I don't think I'd want to pay such kind of a premium. A premium I wouldn't have a problem with but apple is exaggerating just a little tiny bit.
     
  25. corvus32 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2009
    Location:
    USA
    #25
    Where's the demand for Macs? I see no growth, no innovation, and no value.

    Win8.1 web traffic has actually gained each month, while OSX has remained stagnant.

    Those XP users, they aren't switching to Macs.
     

    Attached Files:

Share This Page