Originally Posted by imacmadman22
Keep the Firewire!!!!
Add 2.4/2.6 Ghz Processor or better
Add 9400M w/128 mb video or better
Add wireless "N"
Keep the Firewire!!!!
Add 4 Gb Ram capability (or more)
Add 250 Gb Hd capability (or more)
Keep the Firewire!!!!
I don't play games
I don't edit video
I don't need HD capability
I don't need a server
Did I say PLEASE keep the Firewire?
I am confused on why you are so adamant about the Firewire, especially if you don't edit video. Most external HDDs are more likely to have eSATA then FW these days and eSATA has better potential bandwidth than FW400 or FW800 so as far as I am concerned unless you are going to be hooking up a DV camera FW of any variety isn't needed. Especially considering the low end processors that are typical on the Mac Mini while you can edit video on the machine the vast majority of people who are going to be editing video are going to be buying at least an iMac if not a Mac Pro.
Originally Posted by Marvin
I'd say that they'll either go FW800 or not at all.
I may be holding my breath for this one, but I would prefer that they replace FW with eSATA. Far more external drives support eSATA than FW and that trend isn't likely to change anytime soon since FW ports are becoming less common and we are just talking Macs either(eg. a lot of cheap Compaq desktops used to have FW). FW800 would be nice, but there aren't that many devices that take advantage of it. The only argument to retain the FW port is that some people are using Mac Minis with DV cameras.
Originally Posted by hmurchison
Nah....he just forgot to append " at the margins we like to seel at" to the end of that sentence.
I would probably agree with that. I seem to remember a story for the first, maybe second generation Mac Mini where the estimated wholesale cost of a $600 Mac Mini was ~$510. After you threw in support costs, and R&D there probably wasn't much margin left on the machine. Needless to say later updates were pretty cheap upgrades there little more than tweaked the specs of the machine so that they could reap bigger margins. I am guessing that Apple either is testing a longer product cycle for the Mac Mini because they are trying to see how much money they can make with a low spec Mac or Apple is developing a dramatically redesigned Mac Mini and needless to say there is a lot of directions that they could go.
Jobs is a fcking moron. 17k signatures on a petition. FW complaint threads on various message boards hitting 2 and 3k posts. Jobs' is clearly wrong. Apple hardware has shown very little innovation which is why Psystar and other companies are trying to eat Apple's lunch.
While that is fairly impressive, I don't think that alone is going to sway Apple. At the current moment the new MB w/o FW is a top seller at both the Apple store and at Apple resellers. I think Apple already knew that there was going to be some criticism about the exclusion of FW so they have retained the old white MacBook as a canary in the coalmine is see whether interest in FW on the MB really is that strong. If sales for the white MacBook are particularly strong and sales for the new Macbook miss Apple's internal estimates we might see FW come back on the MB, but even that is just a guess.
Originally Posted by jacob1varghese
There seems to be 2 markets to serve here:
a. Corporate for which cheap mac minis are perfect for desktop computers or as part of server farms.
b. Consumer looking for low entry point into Mac ecosystem.
I think this doesn't get said enough. I really don't think that there is one type of desktop people are looking for <$1000. The Mac Mini is trying to be too many things to too many people. While with the current economy and uncertainty I have my skepticism that Apple is going to split the Mini into two different designs right now if I were Apple I would have strongly studied the idea if not implemented the idea.
So for a consumer focused machine I think that I would consider making the Mac Mini just a smidge taller and moving to a 3.5" HDD. This would allow for Apple to use HDDs that were cheaper per GB and allow Apple to reasonably include a 500GB HDD on the $600 model. While the 6.5x6.5 footprint is nice a lot of people would trade a slightly taller chassis if the computer had more storage for the same price if NOT a lower price.
As for mini-DP, I really have to differ with some people on the whole idea of dropping DVI for mini-DP. There is only one monitor on the market that uses mini-DP(Apple's LED 24") and it is $900! Hooking up to EVERY other monitor would require an adapter, which on a computer that is intended to bring people into the Apple world is a bad idea. To add insult to injury, Apple hasn't released a mini-DP to HDMI adapter so anyone hoping to use the Mac Mini for a media center will need an adapter from mini-DP to DVI, then DVI-HDMI. That isn't elegant at all, nor would it encourage people to buy this machine. Apple apologists will tell you how forward thinking Displayport is, but where is the mini-DP to DP adapter so you can hook it up to a monitor with standard DP? So Apple is hyping up the advantages of DP, but you can't get ANY of the benefits of the standard because other from their $900 monitor you can't hook up any monitor with DP. Adding mini-DP to the Mac Mini seems like nothing more than giving potential users a world of hurt with no clear benefit. Several commentators have questioned the hype over displayport considering that so few monitors have been released that include the standard. A full size DP port makes sense on the Mac Pro where there are a lot of potential users of monitors with DP, but for a consumer machine any variation on DP seems silly. For the time being I would prefer them to retain DVI. DVI is pretty standard for new monitors these days. If they have to move a smaller connector they would be better off going with HDMI insofar as most TVs have HDMI and HDMI>DVI adapters are commonplace and fairly inexpensive compared to Apple's mini-DP adapters. The only drawback of HDMI is the lack of analog support, but while there still are a fair amount of monitors still in use with VGA only, the vast majority of new monitors have DVI. Heck, I can buy new monitors as cheap as $100 that have DVI! VGA isn't dead yet, but in the new monitor market it isn't hard to find DVI anymore.
As for the specs I would probably bump up the CPU on both the high end and the low end Mac Mini to a first generation Penryn and use the Geforce 9300. I would prefer the Geforce 9400, but I think Apple would prefer to keep costs down by going with a slightly cheaper graphics chipset. The $600 model would have a superdrive and a 500GB 3.5" drive and both models would have 2GB of DDR2(DDR3 would cost too much on these machines), an SD card reader on the front, and 802.11N support. Meanwhile on the $800 model Apple would have a 750GB HDD and offer a DVD-burner/Blu-ray reader.
As for a server focused machine I would probably again create a slightly taller chassis, but instead of using a 3.5" drive like in the consumer model, there would be 2 2.5" drives so that one could have a RAID 1 set if you wanted. Most of the remaining specs would be the same on both the mini server and the consumer machine. The only difference is that I think that a high end mini server would have a better processor or faster HDDs in place of a Blu-ray reader.
As for things I don't think are realistic:
-DDR3 (too expensive at this point for a $600)
-dropping the optical drive (I can see that one isn't needed for a server, but an optical drive isn't that expensive and most consumers are going to want to use an optical from time to time)
-Quad Cores (too expensive and more importantly too much heat for a small computer)
-Intel i7 (way too expensive and I don't think there are any boards in that form factor that would even support it)
- merge the AppleTV with the Mac Mini (The AppleTV doesn't really compete with the MacMini anyways and the AppleTV will either be overhauled or eliminated next year anyways.)
-modular design (too unorthodox, too many unknown costs, not a clear demand for this either)
-An SSD (too expensive, not enough demand in the non-enterprise desktop although because some people are using these at mini-servers it might be CTO option)
- an expresscard slot (not enough demand)
I wouldn't be surprised if Apple eliminates FW and moves to mini-DP and then will claim that there wasn't enough space for FW. That being said if they do that I think that a lot of users would be really unhappy because nobody is clamoring for adapters just to use any type of display nevermind getting the FW fanatics mad. In the last year Apple has underwhelmed and somehow I am cynical that they are going to change this trend.