Need Advice From Experienced Users


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 27, 2005
Greetings all... I've been using PC's for the last 12 years or so and have always been intrigued by Macs. I almost bought one a few years back but passed b/c I needed compatibility with my work computers. The Mrs. and I bought a Dell earlier this year and couldn't be more disappointed. The dang thing seems to be running in quicksand and has problems if I have Firefox, Musicmatch, and Word open at the same time. B/c of this I'm looking at making the big switch.

A little info... We don't play games and will be using the computer to browse the web, send e-mail, edit photos (hopefully some video) listening to music, and working on my website ( Shameless plug). We are looking at the Mac Mini and are pretty excited about it. I've priced the 1.42 mhz unit with the upgraded ram (512) and the Bluetooth periphs. We will need to buy a monitor, but for $300 I can get a decent 17 inch monitor from New Egg. I figure the total price will be around $1100.

Now, I know next to nothing about Macs. A friend walked by a few minutes ago and noticed me doing some research and said I should wait until the middle/end of April b/c a new O.S. will be released. Is this true?

I guess what I'm asking, is do you think the Mini is right for us and should I wait a month or so to purchase it?


macrumors 6502a
Jan 19, 2005
I am not currently a Mac user (PC for many years now) but I am about to switch in the coming month or so, most likely to a Mini as well. We've heard that the new OS Tiger is supposed to come out next month, so I'm waiting to buy my Mac Mini until then. Personally, I would wait unless you need the computer now.

Again, I'm not a Mac user at the moment, so I don't know how much good I am :p Good luck on the switch!


macrumors G5
For the uses you describe, the Mini would be brilliant. Congratulations on your decision.

Apple is releasing Tiger (OS X 10.4) sometime between now and mid-year. Could be April,could be June. If you buy the Mini now, you'd need to pay the regular price for Tiger when it comes out. If you wait until after the release date, you'll get it for free.

Is it significant? We presume Tiger will have advances over the current Panther (10.3.x). OTOH, there's some validity to the dictum "never buy a .0 release - in other words, delay installing software until the first round of bugs and revisions has been gone through.

Should you wait? The cost of starting to use your Mini now, and buying Tiger later, is $129 - or nothing if you stick with Panther. The cost of waiting is you don't get to use your Mini for 1 - 3 months while you wait.

The Mini comes with iLife and Appleworks and an Internet Firewall. Don't forget to include in your budget any third-party software that you would need, and check out for Mac utilities and shareware.


macrumors 65816
Jul 28, 2004
Portland, Oregon
Congratulations, I made the switch about 9 months ago and haven't regretted it one bit.

The Mac Mini sounds ideal for what you want to do, although for the price you'll end up paying including the monitor you could also get an iBook. If you don't care about portability then getting the Mac Mini makes sense as you can use the display when you upgrade in the future.

Apple have announced that the new version of OS X (10.4 - Tiger) will ship before the end of Q2 - June 30. Exactly when is still not known for sure but rumors are flying around quoting mid-April. Whether this happens or not is anybodys guess at this stage.

When the time comes, all Macs will ship with Tiger. Those who have systems running the current version (10.3 - Panther) can buy the Tiger release for around $135 minus any discounts from places like Amazon, so possibly around $100.

Your decision is whether to buy the Mini now and pay for the Tiger upgrade, or wait until (possibly) June 30th when the update has happened.

Whichever way you go, welcome to the wonderful world of Macs and you should find a lot of willing and knowledgeable helpers on this forum.


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 27, 2005
I know what you mean... I work in the auto industry and have been told by countless engineers to never by an engine the first year it's out. For someone performing such basic tasks will the Tiger OS really be much of an upgrade?

Also, I've been doing some research and am wondering if it's true the Mini only has one memory slot? If so, would I be better off to buy the 256 and upgrade to the 1 GB chip I've seen people recommend on this board? Even if I have it installed by a local Mac retailer it should be cheaper, correct? For someone like myself is there a reason to upgrade from 512 to 1 GB?


macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2004
A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
You didn't mention if this system will be in your home or shop.

For home use, you'll be great with either the Mac mini or an iMacG5
if you need a monitor anyway.

Waiting for Tiger is a tossup, depending on how long you are willing to delay your purchase. It could be weeks or months.

For the shop, you may want to consider an eMac while they're still available
in CRT as a more rugged, kid tested, durable system with all the best internal features of the mini.


macrumors newbie
Jan 26, 2005
Cambridge, MA
You should check out the Special Deals page at the Apple Store. I've heard that they're as good as new. The iMac for $1099 looks especially good though you should definitely upgrade the RAM to 512mb. Or if you really plan on doing that video editing then you should look at the one with the Superdrive right below it, though this will set you back more $$ than the mini you're looking at. There's also a bunch of other models, just go to the page.


macrumors 6502
May 30, 2002
Consider the iMac

If you have to buy a monitor as well, I would go for the iMac. It comes with keyboard and mouse and nothing can beat the quality of an Apple monitor.

Around the time Tiger will be available I assume there will be an hardware (iMac) upgrade!

Ambrose Chapel

macrumors 65816
Jul 24, 2002
you also might consider the eMac - it has a built-in 17" CRT monitor. it's rumored to upgraded, along with the iMac, in April. i would say wait for Tiger. again, it's just a rumor, but strong signs point to a release on April 15, which isn't long to wait. once it's out, apple and 3rd party developers will focus software releases for tiger, and more and more released will begin to require tiger. so you may as well wait to get it included with your new mac, rather than paying an extra $129 for it.


macrumors member
Sep 1, 2004
I would also consider the iMac, I have just purchased another one for my parents and the iMac G5 feels so much quicker than the G4 it replaced, plus the screen is great. I am going to look at a mini but mainly to use as a media centre.


macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
Location Location Location
If you make money using your computer, it may be worth it to buy the Mac Mini right now and pay $129 for Tiger later. If you don't, and don't mind bumming around on your ghetto Dell, then I say wait. It really depends.

And Tiger is going to be great. I want to use the language translator widget sooooo badly its frightening.


Moderator emeritus
Oct 21, 2003
Portland, OR
Hopefully Tiger will be a nice upgrade to Panther, but Panther is a REALLY solid OS. I wouldn't be afraid to but Panther now, and if you like it and find yourself becoming a Macishnerd™ (like oh so many of us), go ahead and get Tiger at a later date.

But if you really want to make the switch, switch now and never look back!


macrumors 68000
I'd advise you to get the low-end iMac, if you have the little extra budget. You'll get a great monitor and a machine that's faster than the mini. In my oppinion it's better to wait for the 10.4.1 or 10.4.2 update to get Tiger, when the system is completely bug free and I've read some reviews.

Welcome to the macs experience!
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.