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Old January 14th, 2005, 12:30 PM   #16
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Well, in regards to the minimac, do you guys think there would there be a noticeable difference between the 1.25 and 1.42 gigahertz versions in an exclusive FCP environment? Worth the upgrade or stick with the $499 version? (the upgrade to faster processor also forces an upgrade of HD to 80 gig which I'd be using an external firewire as it is, so it's a useless upgrade).
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Old January 14th, 2005, 12:37 PM   #17
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<<<-- Originally posted by Bryan Roberts : (the upgrade to faster processor also forces an upgrade of HD to 80 gig which I'd be using an external firewire as it is, so it's a useless upgrade). -->>>

Not to muddle the issue or anything, but I don't think that I've ever looked at an addtional 40gb internal or external as "useless" . If you do select the upgraded mini I bet you'll fill that internal drive up pretty fast, weather or not you have an external. Even if you don't, you'd have a nice reserve of HD space to deal with the unexpected when it came up.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 12:49 PM   #18
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Personally I doubt that the speed bump to 1.42ghz will be especially noticeable. I see only a slight difference between my 1ghz G4 powerbook and 1.25ghz tower.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 01:16 PM   #19
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Mark hit the nail on the head there. If you were serious about editing I would venture for an older G4 for expandability sake but spec-wise the Mini will still do it well.
The specs for the monitors the Mini will support indicate to me that it would have plenty of power to run video. Video isn't really that demanding on the graphics card. As a frame of reference, I have a Dual 500 with 2x32MB ATI Radeon cards. These particular cards are about 5 years old now but they don't have any problem handling the video I run through it. I don't see there being a problem with the built in card on the Mini since it will display full screen HD resolution. Will it "play" full res HD would depend on the hard-disk and processor. I wouldn't put my hopes in that but for DV video it should be fine.
For an "entry level" FCP system, I think the Mini would be really cool. what you lose compared to a full size system is expansion and more processor power but if you don't need it, you're golden.

The Cube was a cool looking little 8x8 G4 computer that didn't gain acceptance because it wasn't expandable. It was a different time in the computer world back then. Today it works better I think.
As far as Small form factor computers go, I have 2 Shuttle PC's and I absolutely love them. They pack a ton of punch into a tiny little case.

http://us.shuttle.com/
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Old January 14th, 2005, 02:59 PM   #20
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I hope that Apple continue to expand. They have a better philosophy about what computers should be.
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Old January 17th, 2005, 07:19 AM   #21
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Final question: I've heard some concerns regarding the slower 2.5 inch HD. How much affect does having the operating system on a slow drive affect overall system performance when using larger and fast external firewire drives for applications like fcp? Is it only a concern when accessing video files etc. which would be contained on the faster drives or would having FCP on the slow 2.4 internal drive make the whole program not be able to perform as fast? Is this marginal / negligeable? Would using a 7200 speed external HD as a bootable source be a solution?
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Old January 17th, 2005, 07:52 AM   #22
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I don't think you'll have too much problem, this is like the drives they're putting in laptops. I notice that my desktop machine boots faster however.
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Old January 17th, 2005, 09:46 AM   #23
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I seemed to miss the part where Apple was claiming the Mac Mini was a speed demon. Oh that's right, they didn't.

Obviously this computer isn't going to be ANYWHERE near as fast as ANY other computer in the Macintosh line-up. It's not going to be as upgradeable or expandable and... I would bet that Apple had never conceived it as being their new entry level FCP machine. I mean, FCP costs twice as much as the computer! But here are a few specifics you can learn about this new little machine.

1. Yes, it will run FCP.
2. No, there shouldn't be any serious problems with performance.
3. Yes, there are many people using FCP on systems with equal or lesser hardware configurations than this. (iBook, Powerbook)
4. Yes, you can certainly buy a MUCH better system for editing. (see next)
5. Yes, the Mini will feel much slower than a Dual 2.5Ghz G5 with a Serial RAID Boot, 8gig of RAM, an ATI X800XT and Fibre Channel XRaid storage.
6. Yes, you will have to do a few work-arounds on the Mini because of it's limited Firewire ports. (or rather, port)
7. NO, Apple did not have professional video editing in mind when they designed the Mac Mini.
Apple was thinking more along the lines of Ellen Feiss and friends. People who spent more money on their iPod (if that makes any sense). It seems strange to me that there are users out there that will spend up to $600 on an iPod and complain that the Macintosh computer is too expensive (pre Mini era). Oh well, to each his own. (just an FYI, Apple sold 4.5 MILLION iPods for christmas this year!)
If you want to get a taste of Macintosh this is an easy option. If you still need to buy a monitor and mouse and keyboard to go with it, you would be better off buying an iMac, but "most" people aren't smart enough to figure that out.
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Old January 17th, 2005, 09:59 AM   #24
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Or for $800 you could buy an eMac which comes complete with screen, keyboard, mouse, two firewire ports and also has a 1.25ghz G4 http://www.apple.com/emac/specs.html
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Old January 17th, 2005, 02:17 PM   #25
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The eMac has a better Hard Drive too in terms of speed. So now you have quite a few options... really the mini is for people that are a) willing to spend more for style or b) people with their own peripherals. Otherwise, the eMac makes more sense or for more power, the iMac. It is a nice lineup at the low end now. The big question I have is will the mini be a lure to get people into stores and then up-sell them to other computers? The big gap is between the eMac and iMac, not the mini and the eMac... those bottom 2 are budget computers and the iMac with easier upgradability will be the computer for the longer time investment.

While some FW hard drives and cameras won't play nice on a single FW port, many should. There is plenty of bandwidth there. In the end, one port or 2, you are using 1 bus to the computer so it shouldn't make too big of a difference.
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Old January 17th, 2005, 05:27 PM   #26
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My reason for the mini mac is that the price is rather low, however I understand how the emac is a better value, I already have all my peripherals and want to connect it to my 19 inch LCD which has two inputs and then switch between my pc and mini mac for strictly FCP HD and itunes use. The 17inch CRT emac just takes up too much damned space and I don't want an extra monitor cluttering up my already cluttered work space. I think I'm opting for the 1.4 to get the most I can out of this little dude and my 1 gig stick of memory should be coming in the mail soon - I'm excited to see how my entry into the mac world is :)
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Old January 17th, 2005, 05:50 PM   #27
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That makes perfect sense Bryan. I hope you'll report back to us with your impressions after you've put the mini through its paces!
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Old January 18th, 2005, 10:59 PM   #28
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thanks for the replies guys, really appreciated :)
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 04:27 AM   #29
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Bryan, it's 4 days later now. Got your mac-mini yet? ;)

I am actually intererested in this little bugger myself. I am a PC boy, but I hate them - it's just been the stupid price of a fast desktop Mac that's stopped me going that way and my 2.8Ghz PC is more than fast enough for anything I do, so no drive to upgrade/switch.

Now though, for about NZ$1000 I can try a Mac and see if I like the platform. Use it for everything except my video editing and keep my PC for that. Although I'd love to try FCP......


Can't wait to see how thing work out for you Bryan.

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Old January 22nd, 2005, 08:48 AM   #30
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Looks like you may have to wait a little longer for that mini...http://www.thestreet.com/_yahoo/tech...FREE&cm_ite=NA
Quote:
Orders placed on the company's Web site for the Mac mini may take three to four weeks to ship, the company warns.
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