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Old May 23rd, 2006, 11:00 AM   #1
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Mac mini - most reliable Mac?

I'm basically sharing the experience I've had with my 1.42GHz Mac mini I purchased last March in 2005(BTO: 1GB, BT/AP, Combo). I've had my Mac mini now for a solid 14 months without a single issue. The hardware has been perfect, and the software hasn't become corrupted or beaten yet. As most of you know, I'm an Apple Technician and I service Macs for a career - in the past 12 months, I've counted a total of just under two dozen Mac mini's coming in for service - all of them with only minor hardware issues, including defective power supplies, optical drives, and 56K modems. We sometimes get half that number of iBooks in the run of a single working week. I have AppleCare on my Mac mini good until 2008, but I get the feeling I'll never have to put it to use (which is a good thing, and no, it doesn't make me feel like I'm wasted money on it).

Is it just me, or is the Mac mini the most reliable Mac currently available, along with the Power Mac G5? What are your experiences with the Mac mini, if you own one?
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 11:11 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars
I'm basically sharing the experience I've had with my 1.42GHz Mac mini I purchased last March in 2005(BTO: 1GB, BT/AP, Combo). I've had my Mac mini now for a solid 14 months without a single issue. The hardware has been perfect, and the software hasn't become corrupted or beaten yet. As most of you know, I'm an Apple Technician and I service Macs for a career - in the past 12 months, I've counted a total of just under two dozen Mac mini's coming in for service - all of them with only minor hardware issues, including defective power supplies, optical drives, and 56K modems. We sometimes get half that number of iBooks in the run of a single working week. I have AppleCare on my Mac mini good until 2008, but I get the feeling I'll never have to put it to use (which is a good thing, and no, it doesn't make me feel like I'm wasted money on it).

Is it just me, or is the Mac mini the most reliable Mac currently available, along with the Power Mac G5? What are your experiences with the Mac mini, if you own one?
I have the exact same experience as you. I've had mine for a year this month and its been solid. Its nice and quiet and speedy enough for my needs. Apple nailed this one for sure.

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Old May 23rd, 2006, 11:32 AM   #3
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Sounds good, and it makes sense since there was no 'new' technology, hardware or software, in the Mini. it should just work.

Perhaps a little unfair comparing it to a mobile computer though - by their nature they take a bit more of a beating.

Maybe compare to the eMac. There are a lot more emacs in existence so that will of course skew the results, and of course you would have to take monitor issues out to make the comparison valid, but it is perhaps the most easily comparable Mac.

Lars, I bet you really make use of your Mini too. Isn't it great when stuff just works like that?
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 11:49 AM   #4
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Mine has worked quite well given its specs until a large, 70 minute iMovie project I worked on this weekend. Man, LOTS of spinning beach balls! It was quite laborious! With only 512MB RAM, however, the problem surely laid there. So, maybe the Mini didn't have a fair shake.

Render times are bearable for personal use, although it took quite a while to render the iLife 06 white iMovie animated theme that had moving video in all of the dropzones. But this is probably the most extreme test the little pup could be subjected to. Rendering all the DVD elements prior to a burn also takes a LONG time. This is one of those functions where you start it... then go to bed. the next morning, TAKE ADVANTAGE of those rendered elements and burn all the copies you need.

For non-media work, the system runs just fine -- but booting from my Firewire drive helps that quite noticeably.

As far as dependability of the hardware, no issues at all
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 12:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Mine has worked quite well given its specs until a large, 70 minute iMovie project I worked on this weekend. Man, LOTS of spinning beach balls! It was quite laborious! With only 512MB RAM, however, the problem surely laid there. So, maybe the Mini didn't have a fair shake.
My kid was working on an iMovie project this weekend (just under 90 mins) using our eMac. It's a 1.25, with 1GB RAM. It handled the load fine - not swift, but no beachballs. So the RAM would make a bif difference I am sure, plus perhaps the faster HD?
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 12:05 PM   #6
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I just upgraded mine late last week from 512MB to 1GB. WELL worth the investment, especially now that you can pick-up 1GB of RAM for ~$120.
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 12:17 PM   #7
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I've a 1.42/1gb mini. Best computing experience I've had. Ever. No complaints whatsoever, and so well priced. In fact, its resale value is far below what its worth to the mini owner, so I could simply never sell it Bravo, Apple.
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 12:59 PM   #8
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zero failures here, relative to the eMac, iBook G4 and iMac G5 which all experienced unacceptable failure rates.
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 01:25 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Howard2k
I just upgraded mine late last week from 512MB to 1GB. WELL worth the investment, especially now that you can pick-up 1GB of RAM for ~$120.
ALL RIGHT ALL RIGHT!! Time for more RAM. But I have a problem: I'm unsure as to the exact specs when buying from "PeeCee shops". Generally, the RAM for a G4 Mini is PC2700 (DDR333). But, there are variables i9n RAM specs that I do NOT know would apply to a Mac mobo:

There's "CL3" and "CL2.5" specs. What do I need for the Mini or does it matter?
There's 400MHz RAM, can't find 333MHz at tigerdirect. Does it matter?
DIMM Type: UNBUFFERED What do I need for the Mini or does it matter?
Error Checking: NON-ECC What do I need for the Mini or does it matter?
What the hell is "Pin cap"?? What do I need for the Mini or does it matter?
Anything ELSE?? Chips on one side? Two sides? What do I need for the Mini or does it matter?

I live minutes away from a Tiger Direct. They have 1GB for $94.00! Would this work??

HALP!!

Signed,

Useless Me.
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Old May 23rd, 2006, 01:41 PM   #10
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