The only problem is that the price of the Mini is still steadily moving upwards, in exactly the same way as the prices of the latest MacBook and iMac models. A price tag of £649 for a 2GHz computer that doesn’t even include a monitor isn’t exactly a bargain these days, so the £499 model is probably better value for money, even after spending £40 to upgrade the Ram to 2GB.
Looks good next to your telly or on your desk
That’s still a bit more expensive than a small form-factor PC such as Dell’s Studio Hybrid, which costs £449 with 2GHz processor, 2GB of Ram and a 250GB hard disk. However, the Mac Mini compensates with faster memory and frontside bus, as well as a more powerful graphics processor than the Studio Hybrid, so it’s not outrageously over-priced.
Yes, how many Dollars you get for a Pound has changed, and that's largely responsible for Apple's price increases. But if the upshot - however benign the intention - is Apple kit looking rather more expensive than rival products, it'll put off many buyers who might otherwise have made the switch from Windows.
If you’re thinking about switching from an old PC to a Mac for the first time, or have an ageing Mac that needs to be upgraded, then the £499 version of the Mac Mini is still a very good option – as long as you’ve got a decent monitor, keyboard and mouse that you can use with it. It’s more than capable of running office software such as Microsoft Office or Apple’s iWork suite, as well as handling a spot of video-editing in the bundled iMovie software.
Display, mouse and keyboard not included
The £649 model would be a lot more tempting if it had the 2.26GHz processor as standard. Let’s face it – keeping the same processor speed for almost two years doesn’t exactly suggest that Apple is putting its best foot forward with the Mini.
Hopefully, this latest update will prove that there’s still some life left in the Mac Mini. However, it’s a shame that Apple doesn’t really take off the brakes and allow the Mini to fulfil its true potential, even at the risk of challenging the almighty iMac. ®
More Mac Reviews...
iMac 24in (Early 2009)
MacBook Pro 17in (March 2009)
MacBook Pro 15in (Late 2008)
MacBook (Late 2008)
Apple Mac Mini (Early 2009)
I got one
OK, I admit I got one. My old digital audio G4 (with an upgraded CPU) just wasn't cutting it anymore. I needed a new home media server and this mini can both drive my 1080p HDTV and a monitor for productivity work. I was displeased that there had been no price cuts in the previous gen mini, and I was looking at Windows and Linux alternatives. However, when I looked at the costs of switching from a mac to something else (cost of new software for a windows system, time to properly configure a linux system), it seemed like the Mac mini was a better deal. I did spring for the upgrade to 2GB for the base system. Yeah, the memory is somewhat overpriced, but I figured it was worth it not to void the warranty. Is it the best possible system? No, but it is a versatile little computer that does a great job as a HDTV media server. In this function, I would not want a laptop. I ordered it the day the new models were announced and I've been using it for about 2 weeks and am very happy with it.
Cant help but think
they have this ass-backwards, and should be pushing Mac Mini as a glorified typewriter and email checker box, perhaps with a mini-pro variant with a blu-ray drive, improved storage and graphics for the mediabox darlings.
It wants to steal and convert PC users. the best way of doing this is to shunt hardware out that doesnt do everything a PC does, but do it damned cheap. a 300quid mini right now tempts the PC users in, and then they gradually tire of it not doing games, or complex high-graphics/ram jiggery-pokery, and upgrade to a 'real mac' because they love the interface; god only knows, apple doesnt compete with PC users on a hardware basis, so it prettymuch boils down to "love our tiny box and interface!!!", and the only way they are gonna do that is by selling people a Fkin mac to start with, and to do that, you're gonna need to go _cheap_.
Honestly think they shouldnt be trying to make it better, just splitting it into electronic-typewriter version and mediabox version would draw the crowds. can you image a blu-ray version of this? I'd buy the fucking thing, I cant find a single bluray player that actually looks _nice_ that isnt made by Crazy swedes for 10 grand.
mac mini old to new
I got my mac mini 1.66ghz cpu, 512mb ram, 60gb hard disk, cdrw/dvd, 802.11g, july 2007 in august they brought out upgraded models, i was a little p*****d, so i upgraded my mac mini from 1.66ghz core duo to a 2.19ghz core 2 duo, and memory from 512mb to 2gb, the hard disk was upgraded from 60gb to 160gb, the cdrw/dvd drive was changed to a superdrive, my wi-fi upgraded to 802.11n , also got external storage os 250gb hard disk and 500gb time port. she runs like a dream but the graphics card is a little under power, the only fault i have with it. I have thought of selling the lot and getting an imac or another mac mini more up to date.
I hoped the upgrade 2009 would be worth me buying an new mac, but i don't think so not at the price they are.
£100 too expensive
i've paitently waited two months for this hardware refresh after getting my old 1.6c2d mini stolen in the hope i would get a 2ghz unit for the same price as the 1.8ghz. what do they go and do? up the price of the base model by a ton, so effectively, theyve scrapped the base model, stuck new video chips in the top end one, and then charged a load more for an extra 1gb of ram and a bigger hard disk (which *has* to be no more than £40 difference.
so apple have lost a sale, theres no way i'm paying that much for a small pc that sits under my telly and only gets used for watching videos over ethernet and the odd bit of web browsing.
instead i'm gonna try out either the popcorn hour or the WD media player which are cheaper, and spend the spare cash on a new netbook so i can browse t'internet whilst sat on the sofa.
Yes, but why Apple?
I mean seriously what's the big selling point about Apple computers? It used to be the GUI, then the PowerPC then MacOSX, but now you can get usable Linux distributions which have virtually every kind of software availiable at a touch of a button. Additionally the build quality of Apple hardware had it's weak times with "Logic Board Failures" becomming a common phenomenon.