Originally Posted by hsvfdvcadjhdf
Thanks for the detailed reply. I've decided to build my own system and use Linux for this machine. Apple just doesn't have anything to fit my needs right now without spending $3000 on a BTO Pro. And even then it would use more power than I consider necessary.
When it's time for a new notebook I'll probably get a MBP. Apple makes a nice notebook.
Yeah, that would be much cheaper for sure.
You'll save at least $300...
As for the Mini, if you were to get one, you could almost push it into the iMac category, which is what Apple hopes you won't do.
A properly modded Mini can cannibalize half of their desktop lineup
Which is why Apple went out of its way to make sure that the CPU would be non-removable. It's soldered on, AND epoxied. Nice way to kill the enthusiasm. The '06-'08 Minis were socketed though, and people would buy the low-end machines with Core 2 Solo and swap out the CPU.
The upside though is that the '09s with new firmware + Snow Leopard can take 8Gb of RAM, something they don't advertise. Works flawlessly though.
I'm glad you decided not to get the Mini Server.. It's a bit of a rip-off IMHO, when you end up replacing one drive with an SSD.
4GB RAM + 2.53Ghz + (2nd hard drive, but the board is identical, with only two SATA ports) = $1,000.. Yikes..
$800 box + top-of-the-line CPU, 2.66Ghz, with Superdrive and only one HDD = $950...
With the second option, you can, yourself, put in the 8gb + an SSD, which would probably kick a low-end iMac's ass..
But they've tried other stuff to discourage modding as well, like the female (!!!) SATA connectors on the logic board to confuse people....
But it's possible to "have it all"....with the setup above, one can disconnect the Superdrive and with a little bit of work (and no alteration to the Mini itself) run a 1.5 Tb hard drive underneath in a Mini-shaped enclosure, where the drive would run natively thru the SATA interface, along with the SSD, but reside outside. The Superdrive will stay inside, but using a little bridge board, it will actually connect thru Firewire.
In doing that you'd have to butcher the cables a little bit, but nothing too dramatic..
Still though, i agree with your choice..
If you'll want the links to stuff, i still have them, if you are curious about the enclosure and whatnot. It's probably the most that can be gotten out of a Mini, but i'm sure you'd agree that the setup would blow a stock Mini out of the water (and still not void the warranty
) ...2.66Ghz, 8Gb RAM, say 64Gb SSD, 1.5 TB storage drive, and a Superdrive that performs equally well