So what do you guys think about the new Mac Mini as an HTPC? - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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Old 10-25-2012, 09:13 AM
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holy bat turds, a lot of bickering over a lot of nothing. A few misconceptions.

For what you stated, and the what you plan to hook mini up, it will work and be more than sufficient.

I don't know the OSX support for MAME. It should have enough power to play the game you stated if it does have it.

When I got my mini back in April 2010, my main goal was to be able to some live online videos, be able to have HD onlie video, and play some some ripped movies. The other big thing I wanted, as small of a footprint I could get. I wasn't interested in building it because I wouldn't get near the size. The other purchase items was Dell Zino HD, but it had some issues from what I read. When I got it, I knew I was paying a bit extra for the Apple name. But I also knew plenty of people with Apple products, and by and large, they didn't have hardware issues. This is the same thing as buying a Lexus, Accura, Infinity, and so forth. There is a cheaper version that works too, but there is reason it's bit more. But I digress...the OP never asked if it was best value for his dollar. It was would it work.

I now have three minis. Not one running OSX. There a few things about OSX that drove me nuts coming from using Windows for twenty years. In the two years, I had one hard drive go bad. But it worked well enough I was able to get my information off. Apple used the Hitachi HDD which are known to crash. I put in 750GB Western Digital Black laptop hard drive. Thanks to sites like ifixyit.com, it was that bad to change. The hardest part was getting the case off, and reconnecting one tiny cord.

I personally get this it doesn't work well as an HTPC. I guess it depends on your definition of it. I take the broad approach of being a PC in the home theater. I use mine basically as such. Since I use a VPN a lot, the ten foot interface isn't really an option. With the newer TVs being much more PC friendly with a 1:1 display so you can read the text and not blurry icons, a nice wireless mouse/touchpad and keyboard, or combo device, it's decent experience.

The one thing to note, having a HTPC will have some tweaking to be done. May not be much, but there is usually something you'll need to do.

As for the Apple Geniuses, they're a bunch of idiots like the Geek Squad. They just have better scripts to use. For the most part, most people I know who've used them, it's been a positive experience. Unfortunately, I know people where is was nothing but a nightmare. It's customer service, so it just depends on who you get.
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Old 10-25-2012, 09:19 AM
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on a side note, I don't like the fact the video card is on the chip as the CPU. An integrated video card is nothing new when you're thinking laptops and budget PCs. It's a lot nicer where the video can be off loaded to the GPU. That was one thing that kind of stinks about the late 2009 mini, the video ram was shared, and limited to 512MB no matter how much ram was installed.

Back on point, if the OP does go the mini route, I would recommend going the refurb route. Anything that is 2ghz, dual core, 2GB ram or better will work for your planned needs.
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Old 10-25-2012, 10:15 AM
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I've been using mac mini's as HTPCs since 2008 models. I strip down the mac os partition to 30gig and use the rest for windows. In the early days it was a huge pain, because you needed to use specialized adapters to get dvi and spdif married to an hdmi adapter, but the last few models have run great. Excellent video quality, even with BR ISOs. Integrated dualband wireless for nice bandwidth, and the HD3000 and now HD4000 have more than enough horsepower for any video needs. Best of all, to my needs, this is a small, silent box that I don't have to service myself. Could I build a box cheaper? Sure, but it wouldn't be as high a build quality for the price, nor as silent. I've played with ALOT of different micro boxes for the HTPC, because the mac mini's are expensive. But at the end of the day, nothing touches it for quality, silence and power at the price point.

Now, I have alot of hope for the new Intel NUC platform. That might just be the mac mini killer for HTPC for me, but until I get one in my hands and run it through some real world testing, I have to stick with the mac mini as my personal platform of choice.
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Old 10-26-2012, 11:18 AM
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came across this through Engadget: 2012 Mac Mini tear down


the sad part, still using Hitachi HDD. Apparently there is a kit so two HDD can be installed.
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Old 10-26-2012, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovekeiiy View Post

came across this through Engadget: 2012 Mac Mini tear down

the sad part, still using Hitachi HDD. Apparently there is a kit so two HDD can be installed.

You can order them with 2hd's, so that would make sense.
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