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Concerns about Mac Mini - help appreciated

post #1 of 4
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Hi. I seem to be sensitive to many "modern" electronics and high-frequency signals - laptop computers, WiFi, cell phones, and a variety of other electronics (depending on the type and how it's made). These electronics produce a certain "electromagnetic field" that gives me problems. For example, using many laptops seem to give me a variety of uncomfortable and intolerable symptoms - some quite severe. There is reason to believe that a desktop computer (with WiFi and Bluetooth turned off) would be more tolerable and comfortable for me to use than a laptop. A small desktop computer - such as the Mac Mini - would be highly preferable - as I have to "cram" it into a space-challenged bedroom.

I just have a variety of concerns and uncertainties concerning a Mac Mini. Before I make the big investment - I want to be as sure as possible that it would work for me. I'm not tech savvy at all, and I've never owned any type of Mac (nor have I even used one extensively) - so I'm entering this situation with a high level of trepidation. I've been lucky enough that I haven't encountered many severe technical difficulties with the PCs I've used - and I really want to have a similar experience with a Mac. I don't have the energy nor the expertise to be "troubleshooting" a lot of technical problems.

Since my bedroom doesn't have the space for both a t.v. and a computer monitor (besides, I want to limit the amount of electrical devices I bring into my room) - I have plans for my TV to "double" as the computer monitor for my Mac Mini. I will be hooking up my Mac Mini to a 22-inch LCD TV (that I have yet to buy). But - I have concerns about this, because I've seen where people have various problems with their Mac Mini/LCD TV hookup. How likely is it that I, too will run into problems? How common are such technical problems? (I realize that the people who write in to these forums may not represent the majority of Mac Mini users. Then again, maybe they do.)

My "real-world" visits to stores resulted in my favoring a particular LCD TV model. On the whole, I think I feel best with a 22" Sony Bravia BX300 (720p) - at least as a t.v.. I have no idea how it would work as a Mac Mini computer monitor. For the people who have knowledge/experience with these matters - do you think this is a good model to serve as a Mac Mini computer monitor? Here is a link to its "specs":

http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/...specifications

Or, do you know of a particular brand/model of LCD TV (22-inch) that would work better as a Mac Mini computer monitor?

I think I could live with slight (1 inch or smaller) black "borders" around the computer display screen: I realize that some people have run into considerable problems when they tried to fix these borders and make the display a "perfect fit" for the screen. I just want to be able to see the entire computer display (with no "cut off") on my screen. If my computer display "bleeds off" of the screen - would this problem be easily fixable? (After all - having the scroll bar be visible is vitally important.)

What about the resolution (the appearance of text) with a 22" 720p LCD TV? Would it be o.k. on a 22-inch screen with a 1366x768 resolution (the native resolution of the Sony BX300)? I'm not one who requires a "tight" resolution - I defiinitely prefer my text to be on the large side. I just don't want it to be too large or too "fuzzy". Also, I will likely be sitting at least 3 feet from the screen - maybe as far as 6 feet from it.

My Internet provider is AT&T Uverse - we have wireless, but I will be opting to hook up my Mac Mini via Ethernet, to (hopefully) cut down on the bothersome electromagnetic emissions. I don't think it is "Gigabit" Ethernet (our wireless hooks up to our laptop at a speed of 54 Mbps - but that may have as much to do with our wireless adapter as it does the speed of our Internet service). How likely is it that I would run into problems with the Internet connection?

Also, from what I've seen on some Internet forums - it seems that the Mac Mini often gets quite "hot" during use. This is worrisome - because the more heat it generates, the more I might be bothered by the associated electromagnetic radiation. Are there ways of keeping the Mac Mini as cool as possible during use? Can the heat/radiation be "felt" by a user sitting a couple of feet away from it? Does the heat of the Mac Mini bother anyone here - do you find yourselves uncomfortable in any way because of the heat?

Thanks for any help. Sorry so long - I just want to do my best to find out what I would be getting myself into if I made the investment in a Mac Mini.
post #2 of 4
It sounds like the setup you suggest would work great. Using the full resolution of the TV shouldn't be a problem; Macs are great at detecting the display resolution and defaulting to the optimal one. You would need a Mini-Displayport-to-HDMI adapter from monoprice.com to get a crisp, digital image.

Heat would be a non-issue, unless maybe you are resting your hand atop the mini.

Edit: Any internet service provider will work perfectly with any Mac, wired or not. Wired is actually slightly faster; people prefer Wifi simply for convenience.
post #3 of 4
One point I'll add to this is distance. If you really think you might sit six feet from the TV/monitor, a 22" screen won't work too well as a computer display. Maybe at three or perhaps four feet you could do it with the native resolution but probably not six... too far away for the screen size (OK for television viewing, though).
post #4 of 4
Have you considered trying to shield the electrical components?

I work for a company that provides satellite internet to people in remote areas. The company that makes the modems does a really terrible job of adequately shielding the power supply for them, so they leak interference in the 7ghz band (mostly).

Some users have reported success cutting this down by giving it a tin foil hat of sorts - build (out of anything readily available) a box big enough to fit (loosely) over the offending component. Wrap box in alfoil, quite thickly.

No guarantees on success though, and you'll have to be careful not to fry the thing by cutting its air supply - obviously, cutting air holes will reduce its effectiveness.
I DONT trust your haircut.

MBP 13"/22" 2.26ghz/2gb/160gb/7400M.
Windows 7 24"/2.00ghz/2.5gb/250gb/9800GT.
Ubuntu 10.04 Dell Latitude D620.
Xbox 360 Projector
WHS 2.5tb.
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I DONT trust your haircut.

MBP 13"/22" 2.26ghz/2gb/160gb/7400M.
Windows 7 24"/2.00ghz/2.5gb/250gb/9800GT.
Ubuntu 10.04 Dell Latitude D620.
Xbox 360 Projector
WHS 2.5tb.
Reply
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