mini Mac

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dankephoto's picture
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Figured I'd start an appropriately placed new thread to accomodate discussion about the newest Mac.

dan k

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dankephoto's picture
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initial reaction = positive plus!

I think it's bloody brilliant! It's still not exactly cheap for its modest specs, but it is at a pricepoint where alot of otherwise-wintel buyers will (hopefully) seriously consider giving it a try. I shouldn't think it will swipe many sales from Apple's towers, but I bet eMac and iMac will feel the bite. Hmmmm, I wonder how long ol' eMac will be around . . .

It was obviously designed around the optical drive's footprint. It's scarcely larger in any dimension and of 2" total thickness, 0.5" is in the optical. And the HD must be a 2.5" mechanism, probably 9.5mm high.

Crud, I'm itching to get my eyes on some real docs. The devnote hasn't been posted yet (as I write), that's sure to be interesting, and the CIP pages ought to be as well. The SS manual ought to be posted by the time it ships . . .

Hey, as I'm really not a PC guy at all, can anyone tell me/us what its competition (size and/or $$$) looks like on the wintel side?

dan k

ps: dammit, I screwed up the thread title, it's called "Mac mini".

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Mac Mini

I cant believe how cool, powerful, cheap and small it is. Literally, I can't, and being the pessimist I am... I can't wait till the design problems start rushing in.

...Screw that I'm going out to buy one ASAP! Laughing out loud

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I think it looks great. So g

I think it looks great. So great, in fact, that I've ordered one for my parents. They could really use an upgrade from their old Beige G3. This is the perfect machine for them.

Speaking of Beige boxes, I wonder just how much the used mac market is going to get hit by this thing. It is good to know that competant used macs will available for very modest prices. At least, as soon as news of a $500 brand-new Mac slowly hits the mainstream...that might be a while though. Wink

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I see the design as accomodat

I see the design as accomodating the optical drive, AND the DIMM. In the photos, the DIMM takes a significant portion of the height and length of the unit. I'm sure on the other side is the slot for APE and/or BT. All in all, ounce for ounce, it's more sleek, more refined, and one heck of alot more cuter than any mini-ITX box around. It's going to be my next major computer purchase, for $499, oh yes it will. ;D My wife wants an iPod shuffle so she won't have to take our expensive 20GB 3G iPod on walks with our daughter. If it doesn't get bought by Mothers Day, ti will be my gift for her then. I dunno how I'm gonna get a Mac mini, but I will. Of course, I'm also hoping I'll win the Mt. Dew sweeps and get the badass Alienware Aurora setup, just so I could use the 30" NEC LCD w/ a KVM for my coming Mac mini... :Smile

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eeun's picture
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Re: initial reaction = positive plus!

dankephoto wrote:

Hey, as I'm really not a PC guy at all, can anyone tell me/us what its competition (size and/or $$$) looks like on the wintel side?

In terms of size and coolness, I'd say its closest competition would be the Shuttle boxes...$100 less in price, for a bare bones system. And it's still bigger, probably noisier, and not quite as cool by far.

Quote:

ps: dammit, I screwed up the thread title, it's called "Mac mini".

I think it will become known as the mini-Mac, no matter how hard Apple tries to reverse those two words. It flows off the tongue more easily, and it's got an obvious Mini-Me reference.

I'm really impressed with the mini-Mac Smile. It should work well to bring ipod owners to the Mac - with the possible exception of it needing an external box to get analog audio into it.

Once you start adding options in the Apple store, price goes up quickly, so it'll be interesting to see how easy a box it is to crack open to install non-Apple store RAM, pc-cards (as in PCMCIA) and larger drives. For instance, I'd be happy with a $12 used .11b wireless card instead of a $100 airport card.

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two words:

Aw-some. Now I have a way to get a G4 with spending a lot. (My most current Apple is the 2003 900MHz G3 iBook.) That would also be nice as a Coffee/Cocoa Cup Warmer. Not that I would use it as one, but... I was hoping for something bigger. If I get it I don't want to eplain that the HD/CD-burner is hooked up to my monitor because it is a Computer too.
One thing that is cool is that you can use a regular VGA monitor with it. The older desktops before the G3 Beige Conole (not Tower) had to use a special monitor or adapter. Another thing is that they could have made it somewhat the footprint/capable of being able to use a monitor on top of it.
But I shouldn't complain, Thank you apple for another beautiful and totally off-the-wall, eccentric, and wicked design

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Still gotta use a DVI -> VGA

Still gotta use a DVI -> VGA adapter with this... Wink

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Yeah, but...

It's included in the price of the unit.

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I'd love to see thie size of

I'd love to see thie size of powerbrick. Perhaps apple will come out with a brick that has two power connectors: one for the computer and another for an apple cinema display.

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One plus is that the AC Adapt

One plus is that the AC Adaptor and PSU component is outside of the box, so that is one reason it's slim and can perhaps do well against high tempatures.

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Cooling could be a problem

Cooling could be a problem.
Any insights what cooling device is built in? Or is it not necessary?
Apple claims it's silent...

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LTong's picture
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RAM?

Does it take a standard stick of PC2700DDR RAM? Cause 475 bucks for Apple's BTO Gig of RAM is ridiculous.

(I wonder how much I can get for my G4/466, This thing is looking tempting, like some sort of futuristic sandwich) :Smile

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Cooling

The unit is cooled by a "teensy fan". Cooling should not be an issue with these. I'd imagine they will turn out to be more reliable than eMac, given that most eProblems are display-related.

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That one sticky point

Every other Mac has to have at least one gripeworthy feature, and this one's no different. It's a bit frustrating that they didn't find room for a second DIMM socket. That offically gives it the lowest memory ceiling of any shipping Mac. (Fair given its price, I suppose, but... even the old slot-loading CRT iMacs can be upgraded to one gig. Six years have gone by since then.)

To some degree you can apply the same gripe to the Flat-Panel iMac, of course, for a slightly different reason. Sure, it has two sockets at least, for 2GB, but... what's the point of having a 64 bit CPU if you're limited to 31 bits worth of addressable RAM? ;^>

If they couldn't of squeezed in the second socket at the least it would of been nice if they'd done the "iBook trick" and soldered the stock 256MB RAM to the motherboard. That'd make the ceiling 1.25 gig, which isn't much of a difference, but it's at least a sop. (And it'd have let Apple ship the base units with an empty DIMM socket exclusively for "upgrading", as opposed to leaving the user in the position of having to lose memory they paid for when upgrading.)

That gripe aside, I'm thinking of getting one. It's a reasonable price to pay to stop furtzing around with a noisy, sluggish G4-ed B&W. I'm waiting several months, however. I know how good units from the first batch of a new Apple product can be, thank you. :^b

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Its cool, yes, but if they'd

Its cool, yes, but if they'd done "Return of the Cube!", that would have been cool. It is a bit bad for specs, but given the price, thats understanderble. If they try to claim the problem was space, then just remind them of the Cube (1.5ghz, 1.5gB ram, 300gB HD, ATI 9700 128MB. Thats its maximum, and I know a guy who reached it), which was only a tiny bit bigger. You can make something a lot better and only a bit bigger just by ripping the screen off a 12"PB

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[quote by=truly_cuboid]

by=truly_cuboid wrote:

Its cool, yes, but if they’d done “Return of the Cube!", that would have been cool.

yeah, but the cube was quite a bit bigger

Quote:

It is a bit bad for specs, but given the price, thats understanderble.

No it's not! For the price it's great! 80GB HD, ATI 9200 32MB, all for ~£400

Quote:

If they try to claim the problem was space, then just remind them of the Cube (1.5ghz, 1.5gB ram, 300gB HD, ATI 9700 128MB. Thats its maximum, and I know a guy who reached it), which was only a tiny bit bigger.

Actually a lot bigger, the cube is four times as tall, and a bit wider

Quote:

You can make something a lot better and only a bit bigger just by ripping the screen off a 12″PB

why would you do that? if you had a 12" PB, then use it as a 12" PB :Smile

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[quote]You can make something

Quote:

You can make something a lot better and only a bit bigger just by ripping the screen off a 12″PB

The point of this Mac is the price point: $499. The 12" PB starts at $1599. Compare the Mac mini to a 12" PB, and you get the same system bus speed, nearly the same CPU speed, but a different GPU, half the VRAM, no expensive LCD or batteryand you get to drop alot fo the circuitry that both require. Remember, the 12" has no PC card slots, so it's really a matter of built-ins vs external add-ons. You add an aftermarket 12-15" XGA screen and keyboard/mouse to the Mac mini and it's really a decent match.

Do alot of add-ons to a Mac mini with that spare $1100, then tell us if the 12" PB is really a better system. Wink I can do a whole lot with $1100... Cool Mac One of which is buy two more Mac minis. ;D

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Although I havent been on the

Although I havent been on the forum in a while i just had to chime in now with the release of the mini-mac. I havent had a decent mac since my wallstreet and that was several years ago. No matter how much i liked macs i just never wanted to shell out the money. But alas i have ordered this new one, I ordered on the 12th and it is supposed to ship by the 21st. I see now that ship time is up to 3-4 weeks. I ordered the $499 one cause i couldnt see spending another hundred on the upgraded one, but i did add the superdrive so mine was 599 anyway. im getting antsy for it to arrive though. ill let you all know what i think once its here.

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This about says it

This about says it

http://tinyurl.com/7xohp

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I was just thinking, i dont k

I was just thinking, i dont know why they wouldnt want it to be named mini-mac cause that would give them the option of calling the newest g5 towers the big-mac. I think it would be great for marketing.... just have to get mcdonalds to agree.

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Apple logo on top of Mac mini does not light up

So sayeth Apple . . . hmmmmmmmmm . . . looks like something to Fritterize! LOL

dan k

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Re: initial reaction = positive plus!

dankephoto wrote:

Hey, as I'm really not a PC guy at all, can anyone tell me/us what its competition (size and/or $$$) looks like on the wintel side?

Shuttle and their competitors hve low-end cube-style barebones systems that could be built fairly close to the price of the Mac Mini, though they are significantly larger.
I'm surprised no-one has mentioned Mini-ITX yet. (err-someone might have, I just skimmed through the thread. I'm in a bit of a hurry here)

As seen in this poorly made 5-minutes-in-the-GIMP image, the Mac Mini's motherboard bears more than just a passing resemblance to the VIA EPIA M10000. Not exactly a coincidence.
The EPIA line, however, sports many more features than the mini, and a processor that can keep up with the G4s, (it's got onboard graphics, but it makes up for that with the presence of a PCI slot) right from the base model (EPIA 800). Plus, there's a whole range of boards with different configurations of features, and processors available in up to 1.2 GHz. One could probably configure a near replica of a mac mini using an ITX board, for a price that isn't too far off.
But then, you wouldn't have OSX, or as cool a case.

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Re: initial reaction = positive plus!

Cruller wrote:

I'm surprised no-one has mentioned Mini-ITX yet. (err-someone might have,

Someone did Wink
The folks at mini-itx.com are quite interested in it, as they see it furthering the mini-mobo movement.

Quote:

The EPIA line, however, sports many more features than the mini, and a processor that can keep up with the G4s,

I'm not so sure about that. I was under the impression the EPIAs were closer in clock speed comparisons to Celerons, and were designed with a much greater emphasis on power consumption than pep. The FAQ at mini-itx.xom supports this, though it's out of date and doesn't compare speeds of the new processor cores.

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It arrived

Well after waiting patiently for 12 days I finally have my mac mini. I have to say however the novelty has already worn off, its already just another of many of my computers.
And by the way I am using it right this minute to make this post.

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Re: initial reaction = positive plus!

Cruller wrote:

The EPIA line, however, sports many more features than the mini, and a processor that can keep up with the G4s, (it's got onboard graphics, but it makes up for that with the presence of a PCI slot) right from the base model (EPIA 800).

Though I am not an expert, my impression is that the Via C3 chip is a real dog, no where near the performance of a PPC processor. Though the latest ("nehemia") version supposedly offered improvements.

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Sorta.

I have a VIA 1 GHz Nemiahah mini-itx computer, and the CPU performance is terribly slow. Slower than I remember my 750 MHz Duron being.

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weird, funny stuff

some-place-on-the-web wrote:

076-1163 Housing, Bottom, Mac mini
076-1175 Kit, Speaker, w/ grommets, bracket, screws
661-3438 Drive, Combo, 24X, Slot Loading
661-3439 Hard Drive, 40 GB, 2.5
661-3440 Hard Drive, 80 GB, 2.5
661-3461 Board, Logic, 1.25 GHz
661-3462 Board, Logic, 1.42 GHz
661-3463 Power Adapter, 85 W
661-3464 Drive, Super Drive, 4X, SlotLoading
661-3465 SDRAM, 256MB, DDR400
661-3466 SDRAM, 512MB, DDR400
661-3528 SDRAM, 1GB, DDR400, SDRAM
922-6671 Board, Mezzanine
922-6672 Board, Interconnect
922-6673 Antenna, AirPort
922-6674 Antenna, Bluetooth
922-6675 Adapter, DVI to VGA
922-6676 Power Cord, USA
922-6677 Frame, Internal
922-6678 Housing, Top Cover
922-6680 Screw, M2x3, Package of 5
922-6681 Screw, Hard Disk Drive, Packageof 5,
922-6682 Screw, Fan, Package of 5
922-6694 Cable, RJ-11, Logic to Modem
922-6696 Fan
922-6745 Screw, Logic Board, Pkg. of 5
922-6749 Thermal Pad, Pkg. of 5
922-6761 Tool, Case Opening, Mac mini

funny what a little googling will turn up.

dan k

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Pretty

Mmmm, I just unpacked the floor model at work and set it up. This thing is pretty, but we've got it next to a large monitor and it looks insanely tiny.

A desktop is now lighter than my laptop. I'm scared Wink

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Portable render engine

Another use just came to mind. For musicians and graphic/video artists with underpowered laptops, a Mini would make a great portable number cruncher to offload rendering or synth/FX tasks. As an alternative to putting out the big bucks for a high-end Powerbook, you buy a Mini, install VNC and use your old laptop as a keyboard and monitor.

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