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Any issue with the Mac mini ?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm about to buy a Mac mini (2.53 GHz), so I need to know if there are any issues with this machine. See my signature below to know why I'm changing my computer...

Any heat/noise/bad component problems with the mini ?

I'm interested to know any positive and negative feedback from mini users here...

Mac mini 2.53 GHz, 4 GB, NVidia's 9400M.
13" MacBook Pro 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, NVidia's 320M.
OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8

Reply

Mac mini 2.53 GHz, 4 GB, NVidia's 9400M.
13" MacBook Pro 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, NVidia's 320M.
OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8

Reply
post #2 of 12
I haven't read any issues with the 2.5 mini at all. They use the same CPU in the Snow Leopard Server version with dual drives and still no issues AFAIK.
He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
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He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
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post #3 of 12
I'm going to buy a Mini as my home media server. It's absolutely perfect, and with the Remote app and wireless keyboard and magic mouse, it will be so much better for me than an Apple TV. I just wish they had a BDP and a HDTV tuner, then I'd be able to get rid of all my other equipment completely.
post #4 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kali View Post

I'm about to buy a Mac mini (2.53 GHz), so I need to know if there are any issues with this machine. See my signature below to know why I'm changing my computer...

Any heat/noise/bad component problems with the mini ?

I'm interested to know any positive and negative feedback from mini users here...

The Minis have been the least problematic machines in Apple's entire lineup. No widespread issues at all. It's a shame they ignore the machine the way they do because they are great little computers.

The only issue I really have with them is that they are a bit cumbersome to open and upgrade. You won't upgrade very often but when you do it for the first time and try to jam the putty knives into the bottom, you might let out a few expletives about whoever decided not to use a few screws.

It's a far cry from the towers where you flip a latch down and that's it. Once it's done, it's not an issue though. I always get the base models and then upgrade to what I need. I put 4GB RAM and a 250GB 7200 rpm drive in the one I have now and it's had no problems. I've been using Minis since they launched 5 years ago, I've seen about 10 models between work and home and not a single failure or problem in any of them.

There have been people with fan or HDD failures online but very few.

It will beat a dual G5 in performance and the 9400M is a great value GPU. I wish they'd move to the 320M because I'd upgrade mine in time for Steam next Wednesday but they'll probably hold back the upgrade for later.

Still, even if you have to resell, the Minis hold their value really well because they are fairly cheap (relatively) to begin with.
post #5 of 12
I have an iMac. Except for RAM, everything else is pretty hard, impossible for me, to get to. If I were to get a mini, I'd have to pay Apple for all the upgrades. Dell has a PC that looks a whole bunch like the mini. It too is almost impossible for the average Joe to work on. Kali, I have noticed the mini almost never shows in the refurbished section of the Apple Store. Except for the Mac Pro, Apple does not built user friendly machines. I do suspect getting into a Mac Book or Mac Book Pro is easier than the mini or iMac. How many of us actually work on their machines? If my iMac failed, I'd have to either pitch it, or hope to afford a repair bill. I did not purchase Apple Care. My machine is 2.5 years of age.

Marvin ... If someone purchases Apple Care, can it be extended past the initial three years?
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
What about the mini with the fastest processor (Core 2 duo at 2.66 GHz) ? Any risk of heat issues ? Is it worth it, speedwise, relative to the other options ?

I simply want the best bang for the buck with the mini, so I'm not sure yet what to decide...

Mac mini 2.53 GHz, 4 GB, NVidia's 9400M.
13" MacBook Pro 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, NVidia's 320M.
OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8

Reply

Mac mini 2.53 GHz, 4 GB, NVidia's 9400M.
13" MacBook Pro 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, NVidia's 320M.
OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8

Reply
post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kali View Post

What about the mini with the fastest processor (Core 2 duo at 2.66 GHz) ? Any risk of heat issues ? Is it worth it, speedwise, relative to the other options ?

I simply want the best bang for the buck with the mini, so I'm not sure yet what to decide...

You would be better off, if speed is desired, to save the money it takes to make a small jump in speed going from 2.5 Ghz to 2.6 Ghz and grab a SSD.

The jump is $150 on the Apple store and you'd probably net only about a 8% speed advantage on the average. Take the $150 and apply that towards a SSD and you'll improve the second slowest storage device in your computer (with the optical drive being "the" slowest)

Your computer will feel much faster in booting, launching applications, running Spotlight searches and more. If the small size of SSD drives worries you, augment it later with an external FW800 drive.

I'm thinking of doing this exact thing if I get a mini in the near future. I'll move my ~users folder to an external FW800 drive and the boot and applications run off a small SSD. I think this type of tiered setup will be the future for a lot of enthusiasts especially as USB 3.0 and Light Peak begin to proliferate in the next few years (giving is really fast external storage)
He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
Reply
He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
Reply
post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by WPLJ42 View Post

I do suspect getting into a Mac Book or Mac Book Pro is easier than the mini or iMac. How many of us actually work on their machines? If my iMac failed, I'd have to either pitch it, or hope to afford a repair bill. I did not purchase Apple Care. My machine is 2.5 years of age.

Marvin ... If someone purchases Apple Care, can it be extended past the initial three years?

No, you only get the 3 years maximum. The difficulty of fixing it is really why I don't get an iMac along with the glossy screen and not being able to change the screen.

The laptops are easier to work with but expensive if the screen gets damaged.

The safest thing to do is to sell the machine on after 2.5 years and get a new one with Applecare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kali

What about the mini with the fastest processor (Core 2 duo at 2.66 GHz) ? Any risk of heat issues ? Is it worth it, speedwise, relative to the other options ?

I simply want the best bang for the buck with the mini, so I'm not sure yet what to decide..

2.66GHz isn't worth it, I think the 2.53GHz one is ok as you get the RAM upgrade too. A 7200 rpm drive would give better performance but if you're not comfortable opening one up then you'll have to make do with the 5400. SSD would be the fastest but expensive for the storage you get. I'd personally go for a Seagate 7200 500GB until SSDs hit $1 per GB. Right now, it's about 2-3x that.

The server model would be best for an SSD + HDD configuration. Apple's superdrives are terrible anyway so you are better off with an external optical drive.
post #9 of 12
Thanks Marvin. I can't afford to remain a Mac user. My next purchase will have to be a PC. The mini does not impress me. While cute, I consider it a novelty computer. Without Resolution Independence, buying another iMac would be foolish for me. Same goes for all notebooks, and the Mac Pro is frightfully unaffordable.

Kali, Is it just the failing video card forcing you to update? I've only owned 2 Macs. My first 1 was an iMac G3. I was a PC guy during the G4/G5 days. There is a company just outside of Portland, Oregon that deals a lot with used Macs. You may want to check them out.

http://www.powermax.com/
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by WPLJ42 View Post

Kali, Is it just the failing video card forcing you to update? I've only owned 2 Macs. My first 1 was an iMac G3. I was a PC guy during the G4/G5 days. There is a company just outside of Portland, Oregon that deals a lot with used Macs. You may want to check them out.

Yes, I'm mainly upgrading because of the dying video card on my G5. I checked for all repairs and replacements solutions : they aren't worth it. too costly, and upgrading to a mini is probably the best path, especially since the current mini are supposed (?) to be more powerfull than my G5 dual tower !!

At least, the mini will let me save my extended keyboard, three-buttons mouse and 20" LCD screen from the G5.

Mac mini 2.53 GHz, 4 GB, NVidia's 9400M.
13" MacBook Pro 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, NVidia's 320M.
OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8

Reply

Mac mini 2.53 GHz, 4 GB, NVidia's 9400M.
13" MacBook Pro 2.66 GHz, 8 GB, NVidia's 320M.
OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.8

Reply
post #11 of 12
Of all the computers Apple makes, I dare say I've never seen a forum poster complaining about Mac mini reliability. And Apple almost never has refurbished minis in stock. Which means either A. they don't sell very many (unlikely) or B. they don't get many broken ones back.
post #12 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kali View Post

Yes, I'm mainly upgrading because of the dying video card on my G5. I checked for all repairs and replacements solutions : they aren't worth it. too costly, and upgrading to a mini is probably the best path, especially since the current mini are supposed (?) to be more powerfull than my G5 dual tower !!

At least, the mini will let me save my extended keyboard, three-buttons mouse and 20" LCD screen from the G5.

I hope you will consider selling the G5 as is. Someone may very well want it. I can guarantee that someone is looking to fix a G5 that has a dead motherboard, and [in terms of cost] feels the same way as you

Price it for ~$250 maybe or a bit more, and that should offset some of the cost of buying the Mini





Dan
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