Originally Posted by Mr. H
Sorry, but you really are talking nonsense.
The Mac Mini currently uses exclusively laptop components:
Laptop CPU (merom)
Laptop RAM (So-dimms)
Laptop HDD (2.5") (you acknowledged this)
Laptop motherboard chipset (Napa)
Laptop slot-loading optical drive
Taking each in turn:
The cheaper mini uses the 1.83 GHz Merom, this costs $241 in quantities of 1000. The desktop Core 2 Duo costs $113 for the 2.2 GHz E4500 (intel processor price list here
). That obliterates your paragraph about desktop processors costing $100 more. The whole point is that desktop processors cost less
and are more powerful at the same time.
You're not looking at the right chips.
An xMac would need more powerful chips than the 2.2 GHz version you mentioned. If, as I said, they stuck with the iMac chips, at higher speeds than the paltry 2 GHz model that is the top of the Mini line, but the bottom of the iMac line, prices are higher.
If we took the newer T7800 2.6 GHz chip, instead of the current higher speed Extreme 2.8 GHz model, we're still talking about $795 in 1,000 quantities. The 2.4 GHz models is less, of course, but the newer 2.8 GHz model, the same speed as used in the top iMac now, costs more.
Obviously, Apple, and other big manufacturers get much lower pricing that the single bin price, and Penyrn chips are cheaper GHz for GHz.
I wasn't particularly talking about desktop chips as costing more, but higher performance chips that might be used. I mentioned desktop chips, because that's what most people wanting an xMac have mentioned. I brought that up to show that these machines would have to be more powerful than the Mini to be attractive to most people who would want one. Apple would not likely use desktop chips, and so the more expensive mobile chips would be used. I should have been more specific, but I thought you knew what I meant.
Laptop RAM always costs more. Obviously I've only got access to retail prices, but comparing 1 GiB of Corsair laptop RAM to 1 GiB of Corsair desktop RAM at Newegg you get $24.99 for the laptop RAM and $19.99 for the desktop RAM.
Yes, about five dollars. Not exactly a big deal. It costs much more to make a bigger mobo with more slots and components, than it does to buy one stick of mobile memory over the desktop equivalent.
Laptop motherboard chipset: unfortunately, Intel don't publish their motherboard chipset prices, however, it is clear that the laptop motherboard chipsets have a more advanced manufacturing process (they have the same capabilities as desktop chipsets but run at much lower power) and are therefore highly likely to cost more than their desktop counterparts, just as laptop CPUs costs more than their desktop counterparts.
Well, I certainly don't agree with that, as it makes no sense. The more advanced processes cost LESS, not more.
The optical drive is another one where it's difficult to compare prices (there are very few laptop optical drives at retail so they cost about 5 times more than retail desktop drives), but given that all other laptop components cost more than their desktop equivalents, you'd expect the trend to continue with optical drives. And you yourself often say that smaller = more expensive.
Apple uses a portable slot drive in the iMac, and so pricing would be the same there as well. Besides, the portable drives don't cost significantly more than any other slim slot drive.
See later for the keyboard and mouse issue. The xMac would have integrated graphics onboard for the $599 model, and an empty PCIe slot. The higher models would have this slot filled with a higher-performance graphics card.
Here, you're not justifying anything. You're just giving a model and a price.
This allows people to upgrade the graphics in the cheapest xMac after-market if they so desire. And yes Lundy, I agree that 99% of people won't do that, but at least they now have the option (and their geek friend who advises them on computer purchases tells them that upgradeability is a must and therefore the current Mini is a no-no).
Only if they wanted one. That's a choice the Mini doesn't even give you in the first place.
In the case of the xMac, they certainly would want a real graphics card. One of the main reasons people give for this machine is gaming, or a lower cost PS or FCP workstation. If Apple offered this with disabable integrated graphics it would only serve to sell it at an unrealistically low price. Apple would then offer at least one card.
You're joking, right? Show me any graphics card that Apple offers that's even close to a low price of $125. Just how many people will be buying your favorite $36 card? One?
On the keyboard and mouse front: you have to add those costs to the costs of the Mini too, so I don't get what you are on about here?
It's pretty obvious. Most people buying a Mini already have a computer. That's why Apple doesn't sell it with a keyboard and mouse. I know Mac people who moved to a Mini from older machines, and didn't buy keyboards and mice. Same thing with some PC people, though two did eventually spend $29.95 for the white one.
If Apple sells the xMac, they will sell it with the mouse and keyboard, as it won't be an entry model as the Mini is.
All I'm saying is that you can take a $599 mini, make it big enough to fit desktop components inside and you end up with a more powerful, more expandable machine for the same sale price with approximately equal profit margin. The cost of Apple's keyboard and mouse do not enter into the equation.
I know what you're saying, but you're wrong.
You can get 2 GiB desktop RAM modules so we are talking one extra slot. The larger motherboard area and extra slot costs are easily offset by the lower motherboard chipset costs.
Wrong again. The costs are not lower.
It's about 70% plastic and 30% metal, assuming the rear is 90% plastic.
Yes, as I said, it's mostly plastic.
I already acknowledged that a larger case would cost more. But the Mini remains as tangible evidence that custom case does not automatically negate a $599 selling price.
The Mini case needs almost no structural support, as it's small, flat, and very simple. A mini tower is very different.
You're also forgetting the bigger power supply, and cooling needs for more powerful cpu's and graphics cards. That adds to the cost as well.