MacBook Pro VS Mac Mini

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
Sorry if this is in the wrong place :confused:

I know there are various threads on the same topic, but I couldn't find one that met my specifics, so I decided to create a new one.
My crappy windows laptop is on the verge of a HDD failure, and I need a new computer, and I have decided to get a Mac, because I'm over windows. I am in year 9 (next year) and I am at a school where the students provide their own computer. I have an iPad, which I will be using unless I buy a MacBook Pro. I use my computer for some light gaming (sims 3, nothing serious, don't really care about graphic settings) photoshop, Internet browsing, and obviously school work, so Word, PowerPoint, ect (pages, keynote and numbers right?).
I will get either the cheapest Mac mini (I have to buy a display, it will cost around $160) or the cheapest MacBook Pro 13".

Sorry if that's a bit of an information overload. So all I want to know is what you think is the best computer for me?
Any help is greatly appreciated,
Nathan
 

sydenham

macrumors 6502
Dec 23, 2010
258
13
Perhaps in the long run you will be better off getting a laptop. Although the Mac Mini is a great product, having a laptop is much more useful. You can take it with you places and you are not tied to a desktop. Yes it is a bit more money but in my opinion it is worth it. Good luck.
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
Perhaps in the long run you will be better off getting a laptop. Although the Mac Mini is a great product, having a laptop is much more useful. You can take it with you places and you are not tied to a desktop. Yes it is a bit more money but in my opinion it is worth it. Good luck.
Thanks :),
But how durable is the MacBook Pro?

Nathan
 

jvpython

macrumors 6502
Aug 25, 2011
284
0
New Zealand
Thanks :),
But how durable is the MacBook Pro?

Nathan
Very durable. I have a Unibody MacBook (Same enclosure as current MacBook Pro) and it still looks new after over 3 years. And yes I would definitely recommend getting the Pro over the mini. It's portable and currently the base model MacBook Pro is more powerful in every aspect (CPU, graphics, memory) than the Mac Mini.
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
Very durable. I have a Unibody MacBook (Same enclosure as current MacBook Pro) and it still looks new after over 3 years. And yes I would definitely recommend getting the Pro over the mini. It's portable and currently the base model MacBook Pro is more powerful in every aspect (CPU, graphics, memory) than the Mac Mini.
Well it's starting to sound like the MacBook Pro is a lot better, but I'll wait for a few more opinions first.

So if its quite durable, and I look after my things well, as always, will it still be ok by when I'm in year 12 (2016)? And maybe into the first year of uni? After that I'm replacing (hopefully)

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Are there any advantages to buying from the apple store online? Because you can get the same laptop for about $50 cheaper at JB Hi-Fi

http://www.jbhifi.com.au/computers/apple/macbook-pro-13-inch-sku-87407/
(Sorry if I'm not alowed to put a link, I'll remove it if required)
 

mrsir2009

macrumors 604
Sep 17, 2009
7,505
156
Melbourne, Australia
Well it's starting to sound like the MacBook Pro is a lot better, but I'll wait for a few more opinions first.

So if its quite durable, and I look after my things well, as always, will it still be ok by when I'm in year 12 (2016)? And maybe into the first year of uni? After that I'm replacing (hopefully)

----------

Are there any advantages to buying from the apple store online? Because you can get the same laptop for about $50 cheaper at JB Hi-Fi

http://www.jbhifi.com.au/computers/apple/macbook-pro-13-inch-sku-87407/
(Sorry if I'm not alowed to put a link, I'll remove it if required)
Nah, there's no real advantage to the Apple Store. If you can get it cheaper at JB, get it there - You'll still have all the warranties that you'd get at Apple :)
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
Nah, there's no real advantage to the Apple Store. If you can get it cheaper at JB, get it there - You'll still have all the warranties that you'd get at Apple :)
Oh that's great :) I thought their might have been some catch to the cheaper price

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Oh yeah,
The other thing that's important, well to me anyway, is can it play sims 3? The specs say it should, but....
 

iAppl3Fan

macrumors 6502a
Sep 8, 2011
796
23
Get yourself the Macbook Pro 13". Buy yourself a 128GB SSD aftermarket and install it yourself. Take the HDD from the Macbook Pro and replace your Windows computer. Now you can plug in the Windows computer to that monitor and make it a desktop as well.
 

AirThis

macrumors 6502a
Mar 6, 2012
505
0
I'd get the MBP if I were you. As a student, you'll probably be on the move a lot, so a portable would be a better choice. In addition, the mini isn't easy to upgrade and hasn't been refreshed in a long time.
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
I'd get the MBP if I were you. As a student, you'll probably be on the move a lot, so a portable would be a better choice. In addition, the mini isn't easy to upgrade and hasn't been refreshed in a long time.
Not trying to disagree, but the Mac mini has been refreshed quite recently, and it's really easy to upgrade, you can just twist of the bottom panel and your in

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Get yourself the Macbook Pro 13". Buy yourself a 128GB SSD aftermarket and install it yourself. Take the HDD from the Macbook Pro and replace your Windows computer. Now you can plug in the Windows computer to that monitor and make it a desktop as well.
But what's the point of that? Won't it have mountain lion on the HDD from the Mac? Or am I surposed to put the 128GB SSD in the windows pc? (Btw I don't have the windows disks, it was an OEM)

Nathan
 

Djlild7hina

macrumors 6502a
Mar 28, 2009
694
24
Actually the mac mini hasn't been updated in a while and is due for a refresh. I agree with everyone though and I say get the macbook pro :) the mac mini refresh will have the same specs as the base macbook pro but you won't have the portability of a laptop.

iAppl3Fan is saying to replace the drive in the macbook and put in a SSD (clone the drive) and take the drive from the macbook and put it in your windows computer (you could also clone the drive or find a way to get the OEM disk and do clean install)
 

mofunk

macrumors 68020
Aug 26, 2009
2,415
159
Americas
iMac and Mini are the same price when you factor in a Screen/mouse/keyboard. 13in MBP is roughly $100 more than the two.


Just to throw this into the pool. You can get an iMac with AppleCare cheaper than the MBP. Buy an iMac with the wireless keyboard and trackpad. Use the wireless keyboard with your iPad whenever you need to work on papers on the go.


B. Just get a 13in MacBook Pro.
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
Actually the mac mini hasn't been updated in a while and is due for a refresh. I agree with everyone though and I say get the macbook pro :) the mac mini refresh will have the same specs as the base macbook pro but you won't have the portability of a laptop.

iAppl3Fan is saying to replace the drive in the macbook and put in a SSD (clone the drive) and take the drive from the macbook and put it in your windows computer (you could also clone the drive or find a way to get the OEM disk and do clean install)
Oh ok I get you now :) yeah I'm leaning towards the MacBook Pro at the moment as well :) not really sure about the windows pc, think ill just stick Ubuntu on it and take the hdd from our old external hdd.
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
iMac and Mini are the same price when you factor in a Screen/mouse/keyboard. 13in MBP is roughly $100 more than the two.


Just to throw this into the pool. You can get an iMac with AppleCare cheaper than the MBP. Buy an iMac with the wireless keyboard and trackpad. Use the wireless keyboard with your iPad whenever you need to work on papers on the go.


B. Just get a 13in MacBook Pro.
Yeah, but when I think about it, I do like being able to work anywhere in the house, move away from distractions (family) and take my work with me, not a key ring full of USB sticks.

----------


You already have an iPad? My simple question for you..how DURABLE is your iPad? That is your answer for MacBook Pro. :apple:
Yeah good point. I was thinking of getting a good case and a bag for it, but not so sure if I'll still use it for school or not. Depends if I get a MacBook Pro or not.
 
Last edited:

AirThis

macrumors 6502a
Mar 6, 2012
505
0
Not trying to disagree, but the Mac mini has been refreshed quite recently, and it's really easy to upgrade, you can just twist of the bottom panel and your in
The Mini hasn't been refreshed in 400 days according to the MR buyer's guide. For me that's really a long time. :)

As for the Mini being easy to upgrade, I guess it all depends on your level of expertise or familiarity with the product. I tend to find the process much easier on an MBP. I've open dozens of those and could practically fix them blindfolded. I do agree, however, that the 2011 mini is much easier to take apart than say the 2009 model (which I own). I guess that's where my Mini-phobia comes from as far as repairs go. :D
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
The Mini hasn't been refreshed in 400 days according to the MR buyer's guide. For me that's really a long time. :)

As for the Mini being easy to upgrade, I guess it all depends on your level of expertise or familiarity with the product. I tend to find the process much easier on an MBP. I've open dozens of those and could practically fix them blindfolded. I do agree, however, that the 2011 mini is much easier to take apart than say the 2009 model (which I own). I guess that's where my Mini-phobia comes from as far as repairs go. :D
As I have said before, I think I am leaning towards the MacBook Pro, but all it comes down to is money :(
 

clyde2801

macrumors 601
The Mini hasn't been refreshed in 400 days according to the MR buyer's guide. For me that's really a long time. :)

As for the Mini being easy to upgrade, I guess it all depends on your level of expertise or familiarity with the product. I tend to find the process much easier on an MBP. I've open dozens of those and could practically fix them blindfolded. I do agree, however, that the 2011 mini is much easier to take apart than say the 2009 model (which I own). I guess that's where my Mini-phobia comes from as far as repairs go. :D
Speaking of money...

Other than the HDD failure, is your windows laptop still holding up otherwise? How old is it? Are we talking about an old pentium 4, core 2 duo, first generation i5, or what?

Assuming that it's not truly ancient, and is otherwise holding together, you'll probably be money ahead to replace the HD on your windows setup and maybe max the ram out to get another couple of years use out of it.

You and your parents are looking at some big expenses during the next few years: a car, college, and presumably another computer for university. Start saving your pennies now.

Maxing the ram and storage can have a dramatic effect on performance on any machine; my wife's 2008 unibody MBP (2.4 ghz core 2 duo) went from unusable at stock specs to 'like new' with 8 gigs of ram and a larger, faster HD. There just seems to be such a mindset against upgrading in the windows world. I suppose the sentiment is why should they bother putting a couple of hundred dollars into an older machine when they can buy a new one for a few hundred more. Whereas, spending that money to get more use out of a $1500-2500 mac laptop seems like a no-brainer.
 

mofunk

macrumors 68020
Aug 26, 2009
2,415
159
Americas
I have the MBP and iPad combo. Some days I will take the MBP out with me and some days the iPad. If you need to go mobile more than that your best route. If you need more HD space don't get the SSD drive. Yes the SSD drives are faster but not by that much.

Also, to save money you can look at the refurbish MBP. I love mine. I mean it has the same problems as most Macs, and you still get the same warrantee. If you want to start free and new, then go with that. If you are a student, I suggest buying online in Apple Education store or go to an Apple store show your student id. Save $200

I'm using a 2008 MBP with 2.53GHz 4GB RAM. Its pretty fast esp. with all the apps I have on it. When my warrantee expires I will add more RAM.
 

bdude52

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 25, 2012
25
0
I have the MBP and iPad combo. Some days I will take the MBP out with me and some days the iPad. If you need to go mobile more than that your best route. If you need more HD space don't get the SSD drive. Yes the SSD drives are faster but not by that much.

Also, to save money you can look at the refurbish MBP. I love mine. I mean it has the same problems as most Macs, and you still get the same warrantee. If you want to start free and new, then go with that. If you are a student, I suggest buying online in Apple Education store or go to an Apple store show your student id. Save $200

I'm using a 2008 MBP with 2.53GHz 4GB RAM. Its pretty fast esp. with all the apps I have on it. When my warrantee expires I will add more RAM.
I thought the student discount only applied to uni/college students?
Do you think the fact the apple store is down right now is anything significant?
 
Last edited:

mofunk

macrumors 68020
Aug 26, 2009
2,415
159
Americas
I thought the student discount only applied to uni/college students?
Do you think the fact the apple store is down right now is anything significant?

No. Its called the Education discount, for those who work at or attend a school. On both levels, secondary and collegiate (sp). This is the basic discount at a lot of electronic companies and software developers. i.e. Adobe, Dell, Best Buy, Academic Superstore etc. You have to look at the requirements. I've gone to the apple store and show proof, and purchased a Mac for a friend. Its a great incentive because Apple gains a new customer.

Now most universities will have Apple store on their school sites. From what I've seen they are just like any store, but certified to sell at a discount price. Some over more off than the Apple store.
 

rMacBookPro

macrumors member
Oct 1, 2012
37
1
Sorry if this is in the wrong place :confused:

I know there are various threads on the same topic, but I couldn't find one that met my specifics, so I decided to create a new one.
My crappy windows laptop is on the verge of a HDD failure, and I need a new computer, and I have decided to get a Mac, because I'm over windows. I am in year 9 (next year) and I am at a school where the students provide their own computer. I have an iPad, which I will be using unless I buy a MacBook Pro. I use my computer for some light gaming (sims 3, nothing serious, don't really care about graphic settings) photoshop, Internet browsing, and obviously school work, so Word, PowerPoint, ect (pages, keynote and numbers right?).
I will get either the cheapest Mac mini (I have to buy a display, it will cost around $160) or the cheapest MacBook Pro 13".

Sorry if that's a bit of an information overload. So all I want to know is what you think is the best computer for me?
Any help is greatly appreciated,
Nathan
MBP because it's portable.
 
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