still pondering replacing my iMac next year


macrumors 68000
Original poster
May 25, 2010
Ohio, USA
I like my iMac, but the screen burns and the squeaky fans on this system say "it's time to let go."

Back when I got my iPad, it was between that and keeping the iMac, or replace the imac with a macbook air. I'm glad I bought the iPad. As much as I like the air, and as much as I think Lion would have made one tolerable for me, when I need a real computer, I want to down to a desktop.

I have a mac mini on the tv downstairs functioning as an HTPC/server. It can play some games, but it's been a disappointment with gaming since the lion upgrade. (It's one of the previous generation models with the 320m gpu, but still.)

In my room, I have this 24 inch iMac. I love this machine to death, and really don't do anything very intensive that often. I'm hesitating getting another iMac since the screen burning has been a pain since day 1, and the apple store refused to fix it, but I like the all in one design. I'm willing to go for a newer mini, but I'm not sure. My roommate has a base 21.5 iMac that doesn't burn so I guess its not an issue anymore. I'm open to getting a mini, but after buying a monitor, the price difference isn't that much.

Below is a snapshot of my current machine, what I run most often in the dock along with the things I run less often, but are more demanding on the right.

So if I were to compare this to the base mac mini with the intel HD 3000 graphics, which I know aren't the best, how would it compare to my current machine? What would you guys get in my situation?



macrumors 6502a
Jun 10, 2010
compared to your current iMac, the base mac mini would actually be a pretty fair upgrade except for the onboard graphics and 2 gigs of ram. The processor is miles ahead of the core 2 duo. but if you currently have a monitor, keyboard and mouse, then the mini would be a nice cheap upgrade.

But i noticed you have portal 2 on the dock, so if you plan on trying to play games on the mini, i would just go for the base model iMac, or find a nice 2010 refurb base model iMac that has a core i3 and a pretty decent GPU.


macrumors newbie
Oct 9, 2011
What would you guys get in my situation?
Those 2 sentences here - "I like the all in one design" and "I love this machine to death" tell me that switching over to a mini + display might be something you'll regret later because you'll miss the all-in-one computer you're so comfortable with and enjoy sitting down at.

In view of the previous poster's response which points out that an iMac would be better suited to your needs than a mini anyway, worrying about habit, comfort and aesthetic enjoyment is perfectly fine ;) so if I were you, I'd get the base model 27" iMac. Yours is a 24" so getting the base 21" wouldn't feel like a nice change in terms of screen size.


macrumors 6502
Oct 19, 2011
Wait until the next upgrade before you do anything. Your iMac isnt broken, so there is no rush. The upgrade will push the prices of the 2011 refurbs down, or you could buy a brand new, new generation iMac from Apple.

I suggest you buy the iMac. The price different between the iMac and the Mac Mini is at a level where by the time you buy a decent screen, the price difference really isnt that much; and the iMac has a much better GPU/faster CPU.

Overall, wait until the Haswell upgrade. Then either buy a refurb 2011 or a brand new 2012 iMac. The baseline models will be easily enough power for your needs (and more), the screen size is completely up to you and your bank balance.


macrumors regular
Sep 28, 2010
The mac mini + display is still an all in one solution. Its just a tiny box underneath the monitor. And very cheap and easy to upgrade.
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