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"Mac mini" like PC....?

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December 6, 2012 10:47:22 AM

Hello

I am looking for a “Mac mini” like PC for my wife
Right now, she is using my old PC (Core 2 Duo E6750) in a mid tower case, and I find this way too big
She mainly uses her computer for email, facebook, youtube, picasa, etc…..
Nothing heavy I guess

I could buy a book type PC (Zotac, etc..?) or build it myself (mini ITX, ?)

What would be your recommendations in terms of motherboard, cpu, etc...

Thanks

More about : mac mini

December 6, 2012 10:50:40 AM

whats wrong with getting her a mac mini? they are cheap and more than capable of doing what your wife needs.
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December 6, 2012 10:52:05 AM

Get a Macmini, they have been recently updated and work like a charm
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December 6, 2012 10:55:52 AM

captainblacko said:
whats wrong with getting her a mac mini? they are cheap and more than capable of doing what your wife needs.


Maybe because it costs as much as a decent gaming PC.
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December 6, 2012 11:09:23 AM

Nothing wrong at all with a Macmini.......but I thought I could buid/buy a PC version for much cheaper....!!!!
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December 6, 2012 11:49:28 AM

The cheapest mac mini I saw at a quick glance on Apple's web site is $600. It comes with a dual core i5 and HD4000 graphics. You can get more bang for buck with a mini itx trinity build.
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December 6, 2012 12:02:06 PM

Sorry for my ignorance.....
What is a mini-itx "Trinity" build?
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December 6, 2012 12:08:09 PM

french_guy said:
Sorry for my ignorance.....
What is a mini-itx "Trinity" build?

Trinity is AMD's latest APU (CPU+Graphics in one)
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December 6, 2012 12:15:13 PM

yeah you maybe able to build a cheaper ITX machine but it wont be as shiny as a mac mini...
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December 6, 2012 12:25:58 PM

The Zotac ZBox is quite brilliant if you're looking a for a ready-to-go solution.
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December 6, 2012 1:47:12 PM

Macminis are a great value (and you can use it later down the line as a media center thanks to HDMI). Haters gonna hate just cause it's Apple but you are hard pressed finding something as sleek as the mini. Besides you can install windows on it if you really despise OS X but chances are shell like it.

The only thing that comes close in my mind is the Asrock barebones http://www.newegg.com/ASRock-Barebone-Systems/BrandSubC... but they are certainly not cheaper.
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December 6, 2012 2:05:02 PM

if she's doing nothing other than what you've just said, you might as well consider just getting her an ipad. My wife has one and she only uses the PC to back up her stuff or type up a quick document. 99% of the time she's on her ipad/iphone.
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December 6, 2012 2:26:03 PM

PCPartPicker part list
Here you go, half the price of the Mac Mini, just re-use the Dvd-Drive from her old PC and you have a nice upgrade, in a very small case.

Assuming that you're not going to be storing heavy videos onto the drive, I chose a 120GB SSD, which will be quite beneficial to the responsiveness, and sound of the device.

The i3-3220 is an Ivy bridge processor, and is MUCH faster than the previous core 2 duo. It is a great processor, and comes with HD2500 graphics.

For comparison, the passmark CPU scores for CPU's.
http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core2+Duo...
http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core+i3-3...
PCPartPicker part list

CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($109.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock B75M-ITX Mini ITX LGA1155 Motherboard ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Patriot Intel Extreme Master, Limited Ed 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($31.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Mushkin Chronos 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Inwin BP655.200BL Mini ITX Desktop Case w/200W Power Supply ($44.67 @ NCIX US)
Total: $361.63
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-12-06 11:31 EST-0500)
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December 6, 2012 2:44:03 PM

Could the Celeron G530 Sandy bridge powerful enough and still runs on that mobo?
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December 6, 2012 2:52:17 PM

french_guy said:
Could the Celeron G530 Sandy bridge powerful enough and still runs on that mobo?


Yes, but is it half as powerful.
I would still recommend using the i3-3220 instead. It is only $50 more, and will make the device more futureproof for being a general usage PC.
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December 6, 2012 2:55:09 PM

Supermuncher85 said:
Macminis are a great value (and you can use it later down the line as a media center thanks to HDMI). Haters gonna hate just cause it's Apple but you are hard pressed finding something as sleek as the mini. Besides you can install windows on it if you really despise OS X but chances are shell like it.

The only thing that comes close in my mind is the Asrock barebones http://www.newegg.com/ASRock-Barebone-Systems/BrandSubC... but they are certainly not cheaper.


The one thing that came to my mind for similar profile (in fact I think it is smaller) is the Chromebox. Severely limited in what it can do, but strangely enough it can do everything he listed. These things are really meant to be used as secondary computers as a low power get on the internet type of device.

Though personally if it were me I either buy the chromebook (once again secondary computer purpose, while my main is not in use due to being power hungry) or build a small computer like what everyone else has been talking about and either tuck it away out of sight or mount it behind the monitor.
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May 5, 2013 11:23:35 AM

I found that the ThinkCentre M72e is a nice little machine similar to the Mac Mini in terms of size and specs.

It's not a pretty as the Mac Mini but it's close to the same size (much better than having a honkin'-big tower on your desktop - IMHO).

I'm picking one up for a small home server to run Ubuntu on.

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