06 June 2010

[design tools] The Question Of The Mac Mini For Design: Answered ...

2429.... and the answer is good!

A few chapters back I wondered aloud about whether or not a Mac Mini would be a good machine to base my design center around. I'd noticed the specs and cogged that I would get more than twice the computer I have now on my desktop and use my current monitor (a 17" Apple Studio Display) and keyboard for less than half the price of the original G4.

I did get quite a few hits from MacSurfer's Headline News, who notice I asked the question, which made me happy, and somewhat less comments (which made up for in quality what I didn't get in quantity), and the results are, so far as I'm concerned, in … the Mac Mini looks like it'll be a nifty machine indeed, and quite enough for me to go forward from the old G4 with.

A top concern was basic performance. Anonymous (1st commenter) allayed this:
So my first Intel mini was a 1.85MHz and it simply rocked. Not only with photoshop and InDesign, but rendering video (not the heavy stuff, but the day to day conversions.

I purchased the latest generation of Mini and it really rocks, due to the inboard GFX card, not relying on CPU RAM, but it's own.
Kevin Cole chimed in:
Can't hurt. Grab the one w/the best card and most RAM available and it'll work dandy. (We're already using one in the office and it couldn't work more smoothly. Don't know if I'd want to do a LOT of video at once, but for what we're doing, it's smooth!)
Gahlord Dewald had this to offer:
I am very satisfied with my Mac Mini. I am easily driving a Samsung 26" LCD, have my Wacom medium sized tablet plugged in, have a brace of external RAID arrays (though the internal disk is great, I love the speed of RAID stripes so I keep them on hand). I am currently running CS4 and plan to upgrade to CS5.


Not sure how it will go for you, but I can say that I do not regret my Mac Mini at all. Wish I had done it sooner.
Jeff, who works at KGW (I'm guessing on the PDX Tweeter's favorite program, Live@7 (@TheSquare), reported in from the trenches:
Go for it. The mini is a powerful little box. I've used one with dual monitors (19" and 24"), and it worked like a champ. We use a couple of previous-gen minis as render boxes at KGW, rendering full HD After Effects projects, and they've never failed to handle the workload. Dollar for dollar, probably Apple's best computer.
Also, as a couple of commenters pointed out, the Mac Mini does indeed have a fan, which means I was probably confusing the concept of the Mini in my mind with that of the G4 Cube, which worked by convection only (which I thought nifty). The form factor of one is reminiscent of the other to me.

Bottom line, though? The Mac Mini will equal my current needs and exceed them a little, and get me back up near enough to the leading edge tech-wise that I can take a role in the reindeer games once again, which is what I need right now.

So, after that payment comes through from the tech editing job, I have a date with PowerMax, or maybe The Mac Store, whichever. They have good deals. And at the price of a new Mac Mini, I won't have to settle for a used unless it makes better economic sense along the transaction. And both stores have excellent return policies.

Since I rarely get feedback or comments, also, a huge thanks and word to the commenters on that. I enjoyed reading them and watching them come in, and really kind of treasure them. You guise were the excellent kind of excellent, and I thank you very muchly indeed.

Mac Mini, here I come ... by and by.

NB: Young, non-creepy SJobs and Macs sourced hither: http://s787.photobucket.com/albums/yy160/kdlipton/?action=view&current=steve-jobs-1984-macintosh.jpg&newest=1

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Powered by ScribeFire.

1 comment:

Gahlord Dewald said...

No prob. Glad to have helped.

With the new updated Mac Mini (bumped yesterday) you'll end up with an even more capable machine.

Downside is one less USB port and it costs $100 bucks more. Upside is that you can get up to 8GB of RAM in there (though at a very high premium--go with 4 at least though). The gCPU should be even nicer.

Good luck and have fun!