Mac Mini vs IMac for editing home movies

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jburrows500, Jan 30, 2007.

  1. jburrows500 macrumors regular


    Jan 26, 2007
    Hells Kitchen NYC
    I am a current PC user looking to convert to Apple and need some buying advice..

    My main purpose in buying a new computer is to take the box of home movies and convert them all to DVD's before I have a box of blank tapes... I can run the analog tapes through my Sony camera which will convert them to digital. I would use the firewire to go from the camera to the mac. Once I upload the tape into the computer, I know that I need to "cut" some extraneous footage... and maybe add some simple transitions and titles..

    I was thinking going with the Mac mini and buying a nice 22" gateway HD monitor with dv in along with a wireless keyboard and mouse using the blue tooth and having a very clean desktop. But the problem is, will the lower CPU be a problem. I would install 2 GB of ram in the Mac mini if I went that route. As for archiving the videos I was just goijng to use an external usb hard drive.. didnt see any point in storing them on the mac mini...

    On the other hand, I feel the 20" imac's faster CPU along with the dedicated video card would be a better choice in terms of hardware.. but don’t like the idea of the all in one box... and it does not have a wall mount option..(i think the 24" does but that is 500 over what I wanted to spend).

    The last thought was using a macbook 2.0 with 1 GB of ram (maybe later update it to 2 GB ram). I know it has a faster cpu than the mac mini, but still no video card... I could use the built in BT and go a wireless keyboard and mouse along with a nice monitor.. but that blows the 1500 dollar ceiling by about 200 bucks..

    I am leaning towards the mac mini with a nice HD monitor and wireless keyboard and mouse.. Could anyone point me to a bench test showing imovie on the mini mac vs the 20" imac? Thank you for your help...
  2. jklps macrumors regular

    Jan 23, 2007
    I believe this site will have your answer:

    It only has the stock versions, but that would still put an iMac 20" and a mac mini on equal footing with 1GB ram.

    Each review has a speedmark for iMovie 6.0.1.

  3. theBB macrumors 68020


    Jan 3, 2006
    Unless lack of a wallmounting option is a dealbreaker for you, I'd go with iMac 20''. You get much more for your buck.

    Still, if you only have a limited number of DVD's to worry about, you'll probably be OK either way. It might take longer to finish encoding on Mini, but in my experience it will be your inertia that will be a bigger handicap. I'd be likely to feel too lazy to go through all this digitizing and editing exercise after the second DVD.
  4. jburrows500 thread starter macrumors regular


    Jan 26, 2007
    Hells Kitchen NYC
    Wallmounting is not a deal breaker, however I played with a gateway 22" HD wide screen last night at compusa and thought it was great.. and it was wall mountable.... I am thinking maybe it would it be better to buy the white macbook with 1gb of ram and add the 22" monitor and a wirless keypad/mouse a month or so down the road... In terms of video editing, it would offer more than the mac mini in terms of rendering (although the bench mark speeds were surprisingly close for the mini vs the 20" imac in imovie)... and I would have the bonus of portability if I elected to take it to work now and then... is it ok to use the macbook closed or is heat, etc. an issue? Thank you.
  5. brandon6684 Guest

    Dec 30, 2002
    The two things to consider is the faster processor in the iMac, and for video editing disk speed can often come into play, so the mini's slower laptop hard drive could become an issue, especially for transfering larges amounts of video to and from the hard drive. RAM shouldn't be a problem since you can always add more to the mini, and the video card won't really come into play with video with video editing.
  6. iMacZealot macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2005
    Just be sure you get enought hard disk space for all this. After nearly two years, I've filled 268 GB of 340, mostly with video. I thought that a 160 GB internal disk would be fine for my editing needs when I bought my iMac, but I've bought more than that in external disks alone. If this is just a one time project, however, then it doesn't make that big of a difference, but if you're going to be doing a lot of video, be sure you have sufficient disk space.

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