Mac Mini or no Mac Mini, HELP!

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by tobeornottobe, Nov 7, 2013.

  1. tobeornottobe, Nov 7, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2013

    tobeornottobe macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2013
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    My current situation is this,
    I have a late 2010 11'' MBA running snow (slow?) leopard, it can't run any OS higher than that because it lags like hell. I really plan to keep using this machine for another 2 years as people say MacBooks can last 5 years or more.

    The thing is this screen 11.6'' is way too small for my work. I am a stock trader that live between different countries. I don't think it is ideally possible to connect this MBA onto a larger monitor because it will lag the machine even more.

    I have considered other computers like the iMac, but I can't bring that with me. Or rMBP - the screen is still too small on those, so I still need to buy another screen, which would drive up the cost.

    Therefore I am seriously thinking about getting a Mac Mini so I can bring it between different countries for work & play. I don't necessarily need a super powerful computer like many of you for photoshop/video editing, but I do need to open up 40+ Chrome browsers at once on top of some other not too demanding softwares.

    I am think about the Mac Mini setup would be like this:
    4gb RAM, 500gb Hard drive, with an 23'' ASUS MX239H. I can get another screen later when I need to as well. I also need to pay for an Apple wireless keyboard + magic mouse, which would add to the cost as well.

    I can probably upgrade the ram with an SSD later on if the base model MM lags.

    I ran a cost analysis,
    Base model Mac Mini full setup: ~US$930
    Base model 21'' iMac: ~US$1400
    Mid Range 13'' rMBP: ~US$1500 + Monitor = US$1750
    Base model 11'' MBA + Monitor: ~US$1250
    Base model 13'' MBA + Monitor: ~US$1350

    Pretty much the MM is the cheapest of all options, I am still not sure. am I not seeing everything clearly? Please enlighten me.
     
  2. fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #2
    4 GB is not enough RAM, and I'll bet your Air doesn't have enough RAM either.
     
  3. tobeornottobe thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2013
    #3
    Probably, my mba only has 2gb ram and not upgradable. My parents 2010 iMac 27" has only 4gb ram and running mavericks fine.

    I think I will do fine with 4gb during the first year and upgrade it the next year?
     
  4. fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #4
    Not with 40 browser windows open at the same time.
     
  5. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #5
    Get the Mini

    I wanted a computer that was easily transportable, but did not want a portable. I like to leave my computer (and work) on my desk when I am out and about. Also I find the screen on most laptops a bit pokey.

    When the original Mini came out in 2005, it fitted my criteria, so I bought one. It did have its shortcomings, and was soon obsolete with the change to Intel chips. When the hard drive packed it it in, I decided to get a new one in 2009, and got a much better machine, which gave away only a little to an iMac, and probably nothing significant in day to day use. It is not as though I an running any heavy duty software.

    The 2009 is still with me, with the addition of 4 Gb of RAM along side the original 1 GB (so 5 GB of RAM in all) and an update to Mountain Lion last year. I haven't done the upgrade to Mavericks yet as my internet connection is quite slow often below 250 kb / sec.

    I don't get it that some people say you need heaps of RAM. Sure it may be useful for some needs, but for the average Joe or Jill the basic 4 GB may well be all they need.
     
  6. fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #6
    Did you even read what he wrote? He's not the average Joe. He wants to have 40 browser windows open at the same time. Do you have any idea how much crap will load into his RAM with 40 browser windows open?
     
  7. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #7
    Do you ever make a post without flaming?

    The OP's experience is that 4 GB of RAM has been enough. With the Mini there is the option of adding more easily if someone finds their RAM a bit small…… or wants to brag that they have a big one.
     
  8. fa8362, Nov 8, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2013

    fa8362 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    #8
    I suggest you read his post again. He has no experience with 4 GB of RAM. He has 2 GB of RAM in his computer. His parents have 4 GB of RAM, and he obviously never had 40 browser windows open on their computer.

    Lastly, pointing out errors is not flaming.
     
  9. tobeornottobe, Nov 8, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2013

    tobeornottobe thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2013
    #9
    Haha guys, thanks for your input. I guess the best way is to try it out in the apple store and see how it goes with 4gb ram. The only thing I want to make sure is that if it lags in the future upgrading the ram and ssd will smooth it like new again.


    By the time I actually get one the newer model might be already out so things might be very different then. I'm worried that the new model might not be user upgradable, that's a real problem.
     
  10. tobeornottobe, Nov 8, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2013

    tobeornottobe thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2013
    #10
    I just tried out the Mac mini at the store but they didn't have the lowest end model, only the os x server model with quad core i7, 4gb ram, 2tb HDD. I opened up like 30 safari browsers and a bunch of other apps. It was fairly smooth but I wouldn't say without any lag at all. It was usable. I suppose chrome is slightly faster than safari from my own experience.

    Another thing I realized was the Mac mini is actually larger and heavier than I thought.
     
  11. yardbird macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2013
    #11
    I'll pop in here because I just bought a mac mini. Latest current model. I got the 2.3GHz i7 with 4GB of memory. I have a friend that works at an Apple store and he got me the friends and family discount, so 15% off the mac mini.

    I got a trackpad from another friend who never used it. Never even hooked it up. That was slightly less than half the price of a new one and... it's new! :)

    I bought the wireless keyboard from Amazon. It's the same one that Apple is selling, but somehow it's cheaper. Not a refurb. Brand new, but saved a few dollars there. (We also have Prime so no shipping charge).

    The 388LL/A (2.3GHz, i7) is only $749 on Amazon as well. So save $50 there if you don't have a friend at Apple.

    Then I splurged on a 16GB kit from Crucial as I'll eventually want to have Parallels on here running a couple VMs (like I used to do in linux). That was about $150

    When I got it, I updated to Mavericks (free) with the 4GB in it. Rebooted a couple times, ran some stuff, then shut it down, opened it up, and swapped in the 16GB. It made a noticeable difference.

    So my "all in" investment is probable right around what the OP has figured for a mac mini but mine has 16GB of ram and the trackpad.

    I'm a recent switcher and have to say I'm really happy with this.
     
  12. tobeornottobe thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2013
    #12

    I'm really tempted to just buy the basic lowest end Mac mini without even bothering upgrading for the first year. There's a refurbished model selling for quite cheap.
     

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