Mac Mini for Graphic Design?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by LumberJackNAU, Apr 27, 2010.

  1. LumberJackNAU macrumors member

    LumberJackNAU

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    #1
    Hey all, First post here, although I have lurked (unregistered.) I am thinking about getting an apple computer, and have never owned anything apple. Would a standard Mac Mini work for my needs? I am a graphic designer and tired of pc's as they constantly crash... Any ideas, or should I save for an iMac?
     
  2. Matthew Yohe macrumors 68020

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    Oct 12, 2006
    #2
    The displays on the iMacs are beautiful and would be perfect for graphic design. I would push you toward an iMac.
     
  3. LumberJackNAU thread starter macrumors member

    LumberJackNAU

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    Apr 27, 2010
    #3
    Yeah, I was looking at the tech specs and iMac was better, But I was thinking a MacMini
     
  4. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

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    Sacramento
    #4
    Id suggest an iMac as well.

    Replaced all of the towers in my studio a couple of years ago. (see my sig) Never been happier.

    I run the entire Adobe Creative Suite + Quark 8 on a 2.4 AL iMac w/4 gigs ram and it handles it all without even breaking a sweat. And I'm talking multi hundred meg Photoshop files and 100+ page Quark files with gigs of links. Not some crappy little 72 dpi web graphics and a few 3 panel brochures.
     
  5. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    NYC
    #5
    Get the current base-configuration Mac mini; go and buy 4GB of RAM and install it yourself.

    Upgrade the HDD and stuff if you want.

    Buy a Dell U2410; you'll have a 24" monitor that's very good coupled with a decent Mac mini.\

    -------

    The iMac does have a nice display, but unless you get the more expensive models with a dedicated GPU, the Mac mini will be just as good.
     
  6. Matthew Yohe macrumors 68020

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    Oct 12, 2006
    #6
    I wouldn't agree with this. If you did this, you would get a machine with much less power, with a slightly larger (LCD not LED) monitor for a difference of 40 bucks.

    Get the iMac :)
     
  7. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #7
    That would be ". . . (CCFL not LED backlit) monitor . . . . "

    Both monitors are LCD.

    But I agree with your conclusion. Even though I've had one mini in my possession, and have access to another one, I fail to see their attractions, beyond size and noise level. Price/performance wise, they're a bust, IMO.
     
  8. Jason Beck macrumors 68000

    Jason Beck

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    Cedar City, Utah
    #8
    If you go that route, do what I did. Get the base Mini, upgrade the ram, and pop in an SSD. Also get a 1080p+ monitor. The Mini will shine and is a quite capable machine. For around 1000$ you can have all that. It'll save you money.
     
  9. ReviewPC macrumors member

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    Mar 8, 2010
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    USA
    #9
    Actually the mac mini is a better fit for things like my Cintiq 21UX. As it likes being the primary monitor. I could do Painter, Illustrator with no issues or slow downs. Even photoshop 3 (at the time) worked just fine.

    I upgraded my Mac Mini on that station to 4GB, and put a 500GB 7200RPM, and then later a 128GB SSD in it. It was plenty fast enough.

    Now my graphics tablet it hooked up to a Mac Pro, but the Mini did fine.
     
  10. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    #10
    Right, but my approach also allows for flexibility; if the OP decided in the future to buy a notebook or a Mac Pro, then the display would not need to be tossed with the rest of the computer.
     
  11. doctoree macrumors 6502

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    #11
    While less powerful a Mac mini is really sufficient for this. It doesnt have a glossy screen and can be equipped with 8GB of ram. The GPU supports Open CL.
     
  12. splitpea macrumors 6502a

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    Among the starlings
    #12
    What sort of graphic design do you do? If it's mostly static and for digital distribution, you should be fine with the Mini. For motion graphics or print design, you may find the extra power and memory capacity of the iMac will make it more comfortable to work on.
     
  13. LumberJackNAU thread starter macrumors member

    LumberJackNAU

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    Apr 27, 2010
    #13
    I work in Identity Design, I am 13 however, so its not for a job or anything.
     
  14. chaosbunny macrumors 68000

    chaosbunny

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    #14
    Do not get an iMac. Their glossy mirror displays really suck when working on layouts or photos with dark colors. This is coming from someone who used a 24" alu iMac for almost 3 years. If it wasn't for my 21" matte Eizo next to it, I would have sold it long ago. I certainly will never buy one of Apples glass monitor computers ever again.

    Get a Mini and a propper screen and you have a way better graphic design setup than any current iMac. Unless you are working on large 1 gb+ psds for billboards etc. the Minis performance will be fine.
     
  15. jnc macrumors 68020

    jnc

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    #15
    As a graphic designer, I'm going to assume you already have a decent monitor. In which case a Mac Mini would match nicely, but might not be satisfactorily speedy enough.
    That said, a G$ Mini was my first Mac and I happily ran CS on it. Only because budget dictated I had no other option. ;)

    If you don't have a monitor at all already... iMac, because speccing a decent new display to complement a Mac Mini is silly talk.

    If you want better performance than a Mac Mini but you don't want to deal with iMac's integrated screen (lord knows I have no room for such a machine in my workspace anyway) start thinking MacBook Pro + external.
     
  16. doctoree macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Keep in mind he is a 13 year old "Graphic Designer" so he may not have all the equipment in the world.
     
  17. jnc macrumors 68020

    jnc

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    #17
    I missed that post. Mac Mini it is!
     
  18. LumberJackNAU thread starter macrumors member

    LumberJackNAU

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    #18
    Ill show you some of my works if you want, I use Illustrator cs4 and Inkscape also have an Wacom Bamboo tablet. Back on topic though, I got the ok to get it, now I only need 200 dollars... haha :apple:
     
  19. thecheda macrumors 6502

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    Los Angeles
    #19
    For $$

    For the money, iMac would be a better investment.
     
  20. doctoree macrumors 6502

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    #20
    While you are right, a mini is still cheaper and (in this case) sufficient.
     

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