have i made a mistake buying a mac mini now?

Possibly … but up the ram, the hard drive, and the video card, and it’s not exactly difficult to get a $6000 G5 without adding a display. 16 gigs of ram is only $10,500. :wink:

Only if you buy it from Apple. Datamem.com (basic midrange/trustworthy memory dealer) will sell you that same memory for a little under $2500 (4 x 4GB kits, each $600). The difference will get you that 30-inch monitor you always wanted – and the video cards to drive it.

I’ve bought a LOT of Apple products over the years, I’ve learned to get the memory elsewhere. I don’t know why it’s just memory; their hard drive prices aren’t nearly so obscene.

That’s a pretty cool site, thanks. I’m used to crucial, and they seem to be a good bit cheaper, at least from a cursory glance. With my school discount, though, the automatic upgrade for the mini I purchased was actually less expensive than buying it separately from Datamem.

As for how you’d get a low-end G5 tower to $6000 without adding a display or extra memory … well, push all of the other options to the most expensive (assuming it doesn’t need OS X server), and you’ve just hit $6000 - $6004.

I hope this brief resurrection isn’t against the rules; I just wanted to put in an update. I’m very happy with the mini - even got a stealth upgrade to a PowerBook chip, a faster hard drive, and a better memory card. It runs great and I haven’t had a problem yet. Thanks for the help.

(Of course … JUST TODAY Apple announces Intel minis, making me second-guess my purchase. But the intel one has lesser hardware in general for the same price, so I’ll be okay. Probably. Sniff.)

I was waiting for the Intel version myself, and put my order in today for the Duo Core version. I don’t know where you get the idea that the intel one has lesser hardware, however. Most people agree that the hardware is substantially better (faster HD[although you got the faster one too], more memory is possible, much, much, much faster processor, more USB ports, faster ethernet, audio input, SPDIF output, remote control…), with the exception of the major complaint most have: integrated video. Bad for gamers, but I bet no one else will even notice.

I was thinking specifically of the integrated video, as the mini I got has a dedicated ATI card with 64MB memory. You’re right about almost everything else, though; when I wrote that I wasn’t aware that the ram can now go up to 2GB, or that it had four usb ports.

Since I’ve no intention of hooking the thing up to anything but a DVI monitor and a set of earbud headphones, though, most of that stuff is pretty “ehh” to me. What I’m curious about is this: How does the G4 1.5ghz compare to the same-clock-speed core solo 1.5ghz?

Another point in the intel mini’s favor is that it has a 7200rpm hard drive, instead of a mere 5400 (like my PPC mini) or the 4200 that came standard. I’m wishing more and more that I’d waited.


Ahhh… so that was the big announcement from Apple. Apple seems to be coming out with something new every month or so, so I wouldn’t worry too much about it.
However, in future, http://www.thinksecret.com/ tries to keep themselves updated with what’s going on at apple. They’re getting sued by Apple as well.

Enjoy your mini :slight_smile:

Well, it’s not as if I didn’t see this coming … I just thought it wouldn’t be so soon. And I wanted it now. 'Cause I have a child’s patience and an adult’s pocketbook.

I am, thank you. :slight_smile: Just slightly disgruntled …

I think even the intel has the 5400 RPM drive… that was my major problem with it. If its really 7200, I’m pumped.

From Apple’s site, the intel mini is 5 times faster. That’s the high end duo versus, the low-end G4, and I’m sure those numbers are a tad bloated. Still, I wouldn’t be too surprised if the single-core intel is twice as fast as the G4 version.

The other problem with intel Macs right now is lack of universal code. iLife already has it, but for apps like Photoshop and Dreamweaver… those were written for the PowerPC platform, not intel. So when you run them, it runs through a program called Rosetta that translates the program in real time, slowing down the app. Even though “core” applications may 5 times faster on my duo-core mini, things like Photoshop won’t run nearly as fast. From what I’ve read, the G5 iMac will run Photoshop about as fast as the comparable intel version, although the “core” apps tend to run about twice as fast.

Once the universal pro apps start hitting the scene, there will be no comparison.

Does the on-board video use shared RAM? If so, that’s a 10-20% (or so) ding to the stock memory.

The link I meant to give above says 7200:


So if Apple’s store isn’t lying, you may continue to be pumped.

Yup. The geeks are all a-twitter over whether or not that constitutes a major screwup from Apple. Me? I’m considering getting one for the living room teevee so my technophobic family can easily enjoy our collection of photos and home movies.

(As for the OP, any computer is obsolete the moment you take it off the shelf… :wink: )

It does. But it has twice the capacity for memory, so a dedicated upgrader could outrun the distance by a good bit.

That’s crazy, because this link says all drives are 5400. I’m not even sure how I’d figure it out once it arrives, to be honest wit cha. Short of cracking it open, I mean.

Yeah, the integrated video is the 1 drag of the deal. A slight ding to the memory, sure, but I think its completely worth it. Plus, as mentioned before, this mini has 2 slots for RAM where the 1st gen only had 1 slot. That means more memory is cheaper and easier than before. I’ll probably be up to 1.5 gigs within a month or 2 of getting my mini.

Indirectly. System Profiler will give the model number of your hard drive, which you can look up. (Mine’s ST9808211A.)

Note that the Intel Mini uses 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM, which is a bit pricier, and should be installed in matched pairs. 1.5 gigs would be unmatched, which would be a performance hit.

Since I posted that, the text has been changed: it now reads that the mini drives whirl at 5400rpm. I’m guessing some low-level web flunky just pasted the copy without changing that rather key point.

As far as performance, I’m kind of heartened by xbench benchmarks of the MacBook Pro done by Ars Technica here, for this review. Interestingly, my G4 mini outperforms the core duo MacBook on disk IO and quartz graphics, and doesn’t do much worse on CPU (a score of 58 vs. 65). Of course, it gets a horrendous trouncing elsewhere (esp. threading - though I suppose duh).

Of course, benchmarks are worthless. I had a computer architecture professor beat that into my skull with a stick, so I won’t forget it here.