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Apple updates Mac mini, doubles RAM

post #1 of 88
Thread Starter 
Apple today announced enhancements to its Mac mini line, with 512MB of memory standard in every model and prices starting at $499.

The Mac mini also features built-in wireless networking with AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth starting at $599, and the ability to burn DVDs with a SuperDrive for $699.

"Mac mini has been a popular choice for consumers getting started with Mac OS X and iLife '05," said David Moody, Apple's vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing. "With double the memory and new features like built-in wireless networking and DVD burning, the new Mac mini delivers an even greater value in an innovative compact design."

The new Mac mini lineup includes three models: 1.25 GHz Mac mini, 1.42 GHz Mac mini and the new 1.42 GHz Mac mini with SuperDrive for burning DVDs and CDs. The top two models of the Mac mini now include built-in AirPort Extreme for 54 Mbps 802.11g fast wireless networking* along with an internal Bluetooth module. Meanwhile, built-in Bluetooth enables cable-free communication with Bluetooth-equipped mobile phones and PDAs as well as popular peripherals such as the Apple Wireless Keyboard and Apple Wireless Mouse.

Mac mini includes one FireWire 400 and two USB 2.0 ports for easy plug-and-play connections to popular peripherals such as Apple's iPod digital music player, digital still cameras, digital video camcorders and printers. Mac also mini offers a DVI interface that also supports VGA so customers can easily connect to a variety of LCD or CRT displays and built-in 10/100 BASE-T Ethernet.

Every Mac mini includes iLife '05, Apple's suite of digital lifestyle applications featuring iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, GarageBand and iTunes. Mac OS X version 10.4 "Tiger" is also pre-installed on every Mac mini, as are Quicken 2005 for Mac, Nanosaur 2 and MarbleBlast Gold.

Pricing & Availability

Mac mini is available immediately through the Apple Store, Apple's retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers in three standard configurations.

The 1.25 GHz Mac mini, for a suggested retail price of $499 (US), includes:

1.25 GHz PowerPC G4 processor;512MB of 333 MHz DDR SDRAM, expandable to 1GB;40GB Ultra ATA hard drive;Combo (DVD-ROM/CD-RW) optical drive;ATI Radeon 9200 graphics processor with 32MB video memory;one FireWire 400 and two USB 2.0 ports;10/100 BASE-T Ethernet networking and 56K V.92 modem;internal support for AirPort Extreme wireless networking and Bluetooth;DVI or VGA out (adapter included), composite/S-video out with optional adapter; andbuilt-in speaker and headphone/line out.

The 1.42 GHz Mac mini, for a suggested retail price of $599 (US), includes:

1.42 GHz PowerPC G4 processor;512MB of 333 MHz DDR SDRAM, expandable to 1GB;80GB Ultra ATA hard drive;Combo (DVD-ROM/CD-RW) optical drive;ATI Radeon 9200 graphics processor with 32MB video memory;one FireWire 400 and two USB 2.0 ports;10/100 BASE-T Ethernet networking;built-in AirPort Extreme wireless networking and Bluetooth;DVI or VGA out (adapter included), composite/S-video out with optional adapter; andbuilt-in speaker and headphone/line out.

The 1.42 GHz Mac mini, for a suggested retail price of $699 (US), includes:

1.42 GHz PowerPC G4 processor;512MB of 333 MHz DDR SDRAM, expandable to 1GB;80GB Ultra ATA hard drive;SuperDrive (DVD+/-RW/CD-RW) optical drive;ATI Radeon 9200 graphics processor with 32MB video memory;one FireWire 400 and two USB 2.0 ports;10/100 BASE-T Ethernet networking;built-in AirPort Extreme wireless networking and Bluetooth;DVI or VGA out (adapter included), composite/S-video out with optional adapter; andbuilt-in speaker and headphone/line out.

Build-to-order options and accessories include up to 1GB of RAM, SuperDrive (DVD+/-W/CD-RW), AirPort Extreme Card, 56K V.92 modem, internal Bluetooth module, wired or wireless Apple Keyboard and Apple Mouse and the AppleCare Protection Plan.
post #2 of 88
Did I miss something?

Same processor speed, same video card, same hard drive. More RAM and built-in AirPort and Bluetooth. These aren't new models, this is a price drop. And a weak one at that...

The two high-end models have dropped the modem, so you have to repurchase a modem if you want one. I'm guessing the modem will be $30 from apple, so Apple gives you about $150 more product while taking away about $30 (Apple's prices). Are there really so few people on dial-up nowadays?
post #3 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamrin
Did I miss something?

Same processor speed, same video card, same hard drive. More RAM and built-in AirPort and Bluetooth. These aren't new models, this is a price drop. And a weak one at that...

\

Quote:
Are there really so few people on dial-up nowadays?

No. And besides, even on broadband, many need the modem for fax.
post #4 of 88
Good point.
post #5 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamrin
The two high-end models have dropped the modem, so you have to repurchase a modem if you want one.

Who needs a modem? I mean, it's not last millennium anymore. I wish Apple did not sell any computers with modems anymore, including iBook's and PowerBook's, since WiFi has replaced the modem for travel.

The only time you might need a modem is if you live in a 3rd world country, in which case you're screwed anyway.
post #6 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by PB
No. And besides, even on broadband, many need the modem for fax.

So let the 1% (or whatever it is) of people who need a modem for faxing pay for it, why should everybody be forced to buy a modem when the majority simply have no use for one? Or just get something like j2 fax, which integrates fully into OS X and gives you a dedicated fax number, and lets you send and receive faxes and voicemail.
post #7 of 88
Many small businesses, actually, need a modem on their computer. There are good FAX software titles for computers that allow, say, a guy working out of his apartment to have a fax machine (his computer) without having to purchase a separate phone line or hardware fax machine.

The lack of a modem isn't a big thing, especially if you can purchase it as a build-to-order option. However, taking away the modema part already built into the original Mac mini motherboardsseems really chintzy on the part of Apple.
post #8 of 88
Robin Hood, the J2 plan is really expensive ($15 a month + $.20 per page received; no free pages). Check Data on Call for much better rates for their online FAX service ($10 a month, + $.10 per page; 10 free pages a month).

For the price of a J2 plan, many folks could just get a separate, no-frills phone line for a dedicated FAX machine... or a computer FAX machine... if only that computer had a modem.
post #9 of 88
I'm ashamed to be a Mac user. I think its time Steve Jobs stepped down. This is awful.

Six months later and the only things they changed were things the user could change on their own. Ridiculous. It has the same GPU as before so still is not Core Image compliant. The Superdrive is the same one as before without DL support which you get in the eMac and iMac. No 100GB hard drive option when you build-to-order either.

Folks, this is the end of the Mac mini. They treated the Cube this way just before killing it off.

     197619842014  

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     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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post #10 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Hood
...why should everybody be forced to buy a modem when the majority simply have no use for one?

How do you know that the majority is on broadband?
post #11 of 88
wow.



That news was amazing non-noteworthy. How long has the mini been out now? And they update it with memory? Yeah, that will jump start sales.

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

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"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
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post #12 of 88
Apple didn't hype up these updates, this forum did. Has there ever been an Apple release that members of AI were content with?
post #13 of 88
The Mac mini has been out for six months (since January). After six months, I think it's reasonable to expect an upgrade that's worth more than $120 on the low end Mac mini and $70 on the high end Mac mini. And keep in mind that the current update has involved no increase in processor speed and no better video card.
post #14 of 88
If they're selling (and very well by the sounds of it) in their first generation configuration, why would Apple incur expenses to update them?
post #15 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamrin
Many small businesses, actually, need a modem on their computer. There are good FAX software titles for computers that allow, say, a guy working out of his apartment to have a fax machine (his computer) without having to purchase a separate phone line or hardware fax machine.

The lack of a modem isn't a big thing, especially if you can purchase it as a build-to-order option. However, taking away the modema part already built into the original Mac mini motherboardsseems really chintzy on the part of Apple.

Apple's been removing pieces as they've been dropping prices. Where have you all been? The iPod is the perfect example. Everytime they upgrade it, another part is missing from the previous model.

Personally I like being able to buy a computer without the pieces I don't need. Of course, it would be better if Apple made it more Build-to-remove rather than build-to-add. That way, if you need the modem, you don't have to order it from the Apple store.

And I didn't see this kind of vitrol when Apple removed the modem from the PowerMac G5s.

Of course, maybe Apple's noticed that the only people buying minis are those who are trying to hack it into their entertainment center (for no reason other than it would be "cool", if that's your definition of "cool", to me its more "wow, look at me, I have no life and so I'm hooking up a really lame computer to my TV because its got a cute case") or retrofitting it into their car (for no reason other than it would be "cool", see definitions above), so modems aren't really necessary for these tasks.

Generally the mini still lacks alot to be considered a useful computer (which is probably why people keep shoving it into their cars). Why only two USB ports (really only one extra port, since one is for the keyboard)? Hell, if you dare to have a printer AND a 4G iPod, you're screwed into buying a hub (then again, Apple's "High" end pro machines only have 3 USB ports, but you are paying $2000 more for that extra port). Its still got lame graphics, probably the same slow hard disks, still not easily updatable, still only one RAM slot, which means if you want to buy more RAM yourself, you're shelving a 512MB stick, rather than the 256MB stick as before.

I just don't know why Apple wastes its time to 'announce' these updates, or even why they wait to update them at all. For these kinds of changes, they should just update it on the fly. You know, the way Dell updates its configurations.

Quote:
Originally posted by Robinhood
Who needs a modem? I mean, it's not last millennium anymore. I wish Apple did not sell any computers with modems anymore, including iBook's and PowerBook's, since WiFi has replaced the modem for travel.

Modems are required for laptops. Not everywhere you go is going to have wifi or broadband in the hotel (well, maybe where you go, but not where everyone goes). Your local Motel 6 isn't going to have Wifi for all people. Must be nice to be rich enough to know you can get Wifi everywhere.
post #16 of 88
don't care about the hard drive update, and don't care about the processor update.

what the mac mini really needed was a core graphics compatible video card. same with the ibook. i don't think the ibook's 32mb of graphics memory is going to cut it.

even though these kind of solutions kind of compete with wintel boxes' integrated video, it's getting to the point where some integrated video is outclassing apple's low end solutions. at least the integrated video lets you use 64 or sometimes even 128MB of memory for your graphics. and the ATI Xpress 300 or whatever it's called chipset has a better graphics processor than this crap.

Apple needs to stop making computers with 32MB of memory on the GPU. that was so last decade for crying out loud.
post #17 of 88
G5 towers are, arguably, pro-level hardware. Pros with at least $2000 to spend on a G5 tower can surely afford high-speed internet access. Those who can't can simply pay the extra $30 for the modem.

And, we *did* see vitriol about the lack of a modem on the G5 tower, just not as much... likely for the reason I just mentioned. On a low-cost switcher machine, however, I can't see a reason *not* to include a modem. Really, how much could it cost Apple if they're selling it retail for $30 as an build-to-order option? Eight dollars, tops.

Face it, I like Apple as much as the next guy, but this is a weak upgrade, if you can call it an upgrade at all.
post #18 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by 1984
I'm ashamed to be a Mac user. I think its time Steve Jobs stepped down. This is awful.

Six months later and the only things they changed were things the user could change on their own. Ridiculous. It has the same GPU as before so still is not Core Image compliant. The Superdrive is the same one as before without DL support which you get in the eMac and iMac. No 100GB hard drive option when you build-to-order either.

Folks, this is the end of the Mac mini. They treated the Cube this way just before killing it off.

Oh for goodness sake grow up. What did you expect 6 months before the entire 'Book and Mini lines go Intel? Hmm lets spend pointless millions on retooling the consumer lines instead of concentrating on the most important hardware shift in the company's history. I don't think so.
post #19 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Gamrin
The Mac mini has been out for six months (since January). After six months, I think it's reasonable to expect an upgrade that's worth more than $120 on the low end Mac mini and $70 on the high end Mac mini. And keep in mind that the current update has involved no increase in processor speed and no better video card.

Why would you expect such an upgrade after 6 months? Apple can't offer a decent upgrade for their PowerMac lines after two years!

And, Get used to it. Apple doesn't update computers like they used to. They're going to be treading water for the next 12 months until the intel boxes come out. Apple isn't going to come out with any NEW computers (ones that require any extra work except changing the default config - certainly no new motherboard designs, cases, or the like) before going to Intel. They're too cheap. They aren't going to put time and money into a product that they know is going to get redone in a year.

So from now until then, every update is going to be the same thing. Slight increases in specs, cutting of one or two other inclusions to reduce the increased cost of the additions, and keeping prices steady.

Woohoo! The excitement is going to continue!
post #20 of 88
Louzer, your "get used to it" argument is based on the notion that I'm surprised that the Mac mini update is weak. I'm not surprised. I'm disappointed. I know that Apple can't increase their processor speeds much. It doesn't mean that there aren't other places to upgrade the Mac mini.
post #21 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by mikef
Apple didn't hype up these updates, this forum did. Has there ever been an Apple release that members of AI were content with?

No, that's the nature of this forum
JLL

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JLL

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post #22 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Hood
The only time you might need a modem is if you live in a 3rd world country, in which case you're screwed anyway.

I live in a third world country and most of us now are actually using broadband internet. In fact, a lot of restaurants/coffee shops/internet cafes now have WiFi to cater to those who use laptops.
post #23 of 88
I think amongst the people who the Mac mini is aimed at, an internal modem would have been far more useful than the bluetooth module. The modem should be standard and the BT module build to order.

Some ISP's have dialup back if there are problems with broadband too.
post #24 of 88
Hmm. Playing around on the store, you can get everything on a high-end Mac mini today for about $95 less than what you could get yesterday. That part's cool. However, the Mac mini today is still just as slow as it was yesterday. There's the crux.
post #25 of 88
It's a decent improvement on what is basically a new product.

The RAM upgrade is the best part - makes it cheaper to get a Gig. The processor in the top 2 models is very close to the 1.5 I have in my PB and I have no complaints - even when it's hooked up to the 23" display.

The simple fact is that the Mac mini is an entry level computer and should be compared to other entry level computers - especially those that use "shared memory".

As for modems, not everyone can afford DSL or cable. Not everyone is in an are where it's available. My sister lives just outside of Houston and dial up is all that is available. Houston, by the way, is not a 3rd world country - unless you live in the wrong part of town.

Just remember that the Mac mini is an entry level computer for those looking for the Mac experience - don't try to make an iMac or PM out of it.
Ken
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post #26 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by vinney57
Oh for goodness sake grow up. What did you expect 6 months before the entire 'Book and Mini lines go Intel? Hmm lets spend pointless millions on retooling the consumer lines instead of concentrating on the most important hardware shift in the company's history. I don't think so.

Um, excuse me but the iBook actually got upgraded today with a Core Image compatible GPU, a faster Superdrive and a 100GB hard drive option. The Mac mini got none of these things. The hardware shift to Intel didn't stop them from upgrading the iBook. That's my whole point.

     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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post #27 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by mikef
If they're selling (and very well by the sounds of it) in their first generation configuration, why would Apple incur expenses to update them?

If they were selling so well then why does Apple have sooooo much excess stock of them that they have to skip updating the logicboard (which they did with the iBook) and just add on options to move existing inventory? I doubt very much there will be an Intel based Mac mini. I hope there is but I'm sure as hell not going to wait around another six months.

     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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iPhone 5s • iPad mini Retina • Chromebook Pixel • Nexus 7

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     197619842014  

     Where were you when the hammer flew?  

 

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post #28 of 88
Well I just dictated my Mac Mini Middle model + wireless keyboard and mouse + 20" display + Airport Express to the sexy sounding Swede at the Apple store (store.apple.com won´t let me place my order)

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post #29 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Anders
Well I just dictated my Mac Mini Middle model + wireless keyboard and mouse + 20" display + Airport Express to the sexy sounding Swede at the Apple store (store.apple.com won´t let me place my order)


Does she come with the package, or is that build-to-order as well?
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'L'enfer, c'est les autres' - JPS
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post #30 of 88
Its hard to move forward when your 2 cpu makers dont. Nice to add the features but the G4 is is a old slow cpu thats stuck. The Intel move was a good one by Apple. The mac mini still suffers from a pos videochip.
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post #31 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Hood
So let the 1% (or whatever it is) of people who need a modem for faxing pay for it, why should everybody be forced to buy a modem when the majority simply have no use for one? Or just get something like j2 fax, which integrates fully into OS X and gives you a dedicated fax number, and lets you send and receive faxes and voicemail.

Have you beeen outside a city lately? most small towns and farm communities have no wired broadband, so dial up is their only access, and it is nice to have a modem around when my cable modem craps out, and all the APs arround me are driven by the same ISP, CABLES OUT!, oh well, I can still get my e-mail.
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post #32 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by 1984
Um, excuse me but the iBook actually got upgraded today with a Core Image compatible GPU, a faster Superdrive and a 100GB hard drive option. The Mac mini got none of these things.

The more I think about it, the more I am convinced that leaving the Mac mini with a non-programmable GPU in this update, means that something is wrong here with the mini.
post #33 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by mikef
If they're selling (and very well by the sounds of it) in their first generation configuration, why would Apple incur expenses to update them?

Bingo!
post #34 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by 1984
I'm ashamed to be a Mac user. I think its time Steve Jobs stepped down. This is awful.

Six months later and the only things they changed were things the user could change on their own. Ridiculous. It has the same GPU as before so still is not Core Image compliant. The Superdrive is the same one as before without DL support which you get in the eMac and iMac. No 100GB hard drive option when you build-to-order either.

Folks, this is the end of the Mac mini. They treated the Cube this way just before killing it off.

This is exactly what you posted at macrumors.
post #35 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by a_greer
Have you beeen outside a city lately? most small towns and farm communities have no wired broadband, so dial up is their only access, and it is nice to have a modem around when my cable modem craps out, and all the APs arround me are driven by the same ISP, CABLES OUT!, oh well, I can still get my e-mail.

So if you foresee travelling in areas or countries where only dialup is available, fork out the $29 for a modem, but don't make the rest of us buy a modem if we don't need it. Besides, the Mac mini is not a laptop.

And if you travel with a laptop, why not get a cell phone with 3G or GPRS and bluetooth? All the Apple laptops have bluetooth as standard (even the iBook now), so it's beyond me who would need a modem, unless it is for faxing (that is a valid point, and I actually used to keep one machine for faxing). I have been travelling around Europe from time to time, mostly business trips, and I've never found the need to use dialup in years. And where no broadband was available, I used my cell phone, which is just as fast as dialup and works anywhere, even in the middle of nowhere.
post #36 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by wilco
This is exactly what you posted at macrumors.

I don't know the details of his/her case, but I would be surprised if (s)he is under restriction to post wherever (s)he likes the same message. Anyway, 1984 raises a very valid point. The Mac mini update is very problematic and no one knows why.
post #37 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Robin Hood
And if you travel with a laptop, why not get a cell phone with 3G or GPRS and bluetooth? All the Apple laptops have bluetooth as standard (even the iBook now), so it's beyond me who would need a modem, unless it is for faxing (that is a valid point, and I actually used to keep one machine for faxing). I have been travelling around Europe from time to time, mostly business trips, and I've never found the need to use dialup in years. And where no broadband was available, I used my cell phone, which is just as fast as dialup and works anywhere, even in the middle of nowhere.

Damn, must be nice to have the money for all that 3G gear to use with your laptop, and then pay for the airtime.

But then, what you're talking about is more what the business traveler would be hauling around and needing. But, they should be using Powerbooks anyway (unless they don't care about what they look like opening a white ibook in a meeting). The general traveler doesn't need fancy Wifi or hooks into his cell phone. They just want to dial-up, get email, and be off.
post #38 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by PB
I don't know the details of his/her case, but I would be surprised if (s)he is under restriction to post wherever (s)he likes the same message. Anyway, 1984 raises a very valid point. The Mac mini update is very problematic and no one knows why.

Its problematic because people expect the world for $500, and then get pissed off when they don't get it.

Hey, again, its apple. Why you people expected any different from a company that does this ALL THE TIME is beyond me. You all make it sound like Apple's coming up to you, slapping you in the face, calling you a pagan, kicking you in the groin, and running away with your lunch money. Geesh.
post #39 of 88
This was a good update. It has only been six months, but Apple wanted to make configurations available that would make the Mac Mini better suited out-of-the box, for a lot of its buyers. People will now have a much better experience with an acceptable amount of memory, and the display models at the Apple Store will be more impressive.

The dropping of the modem on the upper-end models bothers me a bit. I sometimes use a Mac to fax, and I also have back-up dial-up, if my DSL goes down. Furthermore, 50 percent of Americans use dial-up. I hope there doesn't end up too many people who buy one of the upper-end Mac Minis, and then get home to find there is no modem.

Otherwise, a smart update by Apple. A much better value Mini, and who can argue with getting more?
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*Powerbook G4 12" - 1.5 GHZ
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post #40 of 88
Quote:
Originally posted by Louzer
Damn, must be nice to have the money for all that 3G gear to use with your laptop, and then pay for the airtime.

Even the phone I bought my mother 2 years ago supports GPRS at 57kbps. It works anywhere. How much did it cost? $99, with no monthly subscription, and already including $99 in call credit. For checking email, it's perfectly fine (just hook it up to your iBook or Mac mini or whatever).

But really all this is besides the point. My point is that the majority of people won't need the modem, so why should it be included? I'd rather have 512MB RAM as standard instead of a modem. Those that need a modem can add one for 29 bucks...
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