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Making the switch, what should I do?

 
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prerat
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Joined: 16 Jun 2010
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:11 pm    Post subject: Making the switch, what should I do? Reply with quote

Hi,

I want to add a Mac (Mini, specifically) to my collection of computers at my house. I have 2 primary goals. First, I want to use the Mini as a media station, hooked to my TV in the living room. Second, I want to tinker around with the system, doing upgrades, etc, to hopefully bring my Apple skills up to the level of my PC skills. With those two things in mind, what should I do regarding getting a new Mini?

1.) Should I buy the brand new system which came out this week? It's got HDMI, so that would be good for the media station setup.

2.) Should I try to find an older system, which I wouldn't be nearly as afraid of breaking? With the older system, I could try upgrades, reinstalls, etc.

3.) If I go the older route, which version should I get? Again, considering the possible breaking, the cheaper the better, I guess.

4.) Buying two systems isn't out of the question, assuming the older one was cheap enough.

5.) Building the home network, will I be able to hook everything together (file sharing wise)? I've got multiple PC's, Tivos, and game systems going, so if I could share media files around to everything, that would be great.

Any thoughts or advice would be welcome. Thanks in advance!
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mooblie
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Joined: 26 Mar 2009
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Location: Oxfordshire, UK

PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi and welcome. Just in case you're under any assumptions that may not be quite right:

Although the mini is Apple's "small" desktop, it's nothing like a "conventional" desktop. It's a headless, keyboard-less laptop in a very compact mains powered box. Made of laptop components, not designed for user-access. Sure it CAN be done, and here's the place to get help and guidance - we've nearly all had our minis open....

Expansion is limited to "bigger, but only if it fits where the smaller one was".

It's just that I'd hate you to hate Macs because it's not what you expect as an obviously seasoned "tinkerer"! (The new mini looks even LESS user-friendly for those users with screwdrivers.)

Good luck and come back here for Qs.
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joe1946
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Joined: 20 Nov 2009
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 11:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use my 2009 2.26Ghz Mac Mini with 4GB DDR3 in my living room hooked up to my 1080p HDTV to view my 1080p60 HD videos stored on 4.5TB FW800 external HDs. I also have Windows 7 on it to view my 1080p60 videos in Media Center since Snow Leopard does not work with 1080p60 videos like Windows 7.

If I were you I would get the new Mac Mini with 2GB RAM and upgrade it yourself with 8GB RAM then load 64bit Windows 7 on it.
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2.26Ghz Mac Mini , 4GB DDR3, 320GB int and 4.5TB ext FW800 HDs
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