Tag Archives: mac mini

Apple’s Mac Mini, Mac Pro are Apparently Still Alive

Apple LogoTech pundits have devoted many words in recent years to the coming demise of the desktop Macintosh. At one time, these machines were Apple’s bread and butter. But with the explosive success of Apple’s mobile devices, many have speculated that Apple has unofficially changed its focus towards phones and tablets, leaving new development of full-fledged computers to flounder.

Sure, there’s been some activity on the laptop side of things. And there have been some notable refreshes of the iMac desktop line of computers. But what about Apple’s entry-level desktop, the Mac Mini? What about the other end of the spectrum with the once cutting-edge Mac Pro? These lines have seemingly been relegated to Cupertino’s back burner, having no major updates in years.

But two articles recently published by separate websites suggest that Apple hasn’t given up on either the Mini or the Pro. But there haven’t been any definitive announcements on what may come for either type of Mac. Comments made by Apple’s Phil Schiller to AppleInsider on the Mini:

“On that I’ll say the Mac mini is an important product in our lineup and we weren’t bringing it up because it’s more of a mix of consumer with some pro use,” Schiller said during a Tuesday press gathering revealing new iMacs and Mac Pros, attended by outfits like Daring Fireball. “The Mac mini remains a product in our lineup, but nothing more to say about it today.”

The comments could imply that Apple is finally planning to refresh the Mac mini, which was last updated in 2014 and yet still starts at $499. It’s nevertheless the cheapest Mac, and has found a niche as a server and/or a media set-top.

BuzzFeed News has some information on the latest for the Mac Pro:

…there is officially a new Mac Pro in the pipeline, but it’s going to be a while before it arrives.

“We are completely rethinking the Mac Pro,” Phil Schiller, Apple’s SVP of worldwide marketing said during a recent roundtable with a handful of reporters at the company’s Machine Shop hardware prototyping lab. And it won’t just be the computer. “Since the Mac Pro is a modular system, we are also doing a pro display. There’s a team working hard on it right now.”

While any news about Apple desktops is good news these days, it’s still discouraging that Apple doesn’t have anything concrete to announce about upcoming upgrades to these computer lines.

Buying a new Mac Mini

After the holiday season I decided it was time to replace my Macbook. It is a 2.1 ghz, maxed out at 4GB of memory. It was running Lion but barely. The keyboard was broken, some keys were sticking and two were missing. The battery had also gone bad. I was using the Macbook connected to a 24 inch monitor with usb keyboard and a magic track pad as a desk top computer. I have to admit it was pretty Rueb Goldberg or ghetto, but it worked. I use my iPad as my computer when I travel or go to the local coffee shop, so I decided against another laptop. My choice was than down to the iMac or the Mac Mini. I did look at the iMac, but since I already had two 24 inch monitors, buying the 21 inch iMac didn’t make sense and I couldn’t afford the 27 inch version. I then took a look at the new Mac Mini. I have a working core-duo Mac Mini and I love the form factor, but its even older than the Macbook and is no longer upgradable.

After going back and forth between the various options I decided to go with the 2.5 ghz Mac Mini with the 500 GB hard drive. The Mac Mini comes with 4 GB of memory, but per the suggestions of most reviews, I brought 8 gb of memory from OWC, the same time I ordered the computer. The memory installation is extremely easy if you follow the instructions. I ordered through Amazon, under my prime membership with next day delivery. Before the computer came I went through my Macbook and got rid of all unnecessary files and applications and then did a full back up to Time Machine. Once I received the Mac Mini I connected to the network and then connected the new Mac Mini to the Macbook by Ethernet. I then started the Migration Assistant application. The one thing I would recommend is to start up migration on the from computer and fill in all the information on that first. I only have one “working” keyboard so I had to switch the keyboard back and forth between the two computers. Besides that glitch the migration went fine, although it did take a lot longer then I thought it would. If I remember correctly it took a little over 5 hours. Obviously this isn’t something you want to do at the last-minute.

A hdmi to dvi adapter comes with the Mac Mini, which I used to attach to my LG monitor. It was at that point I realized the only adapter I didn’t have was a mini-display to DVI adapter, so I had to order that. The other thing I had to order was 400 to 800 firewire adapter so that I could connect my Comcast Box to my computer and watch TV using AVC Browser through VLC. So my second recommendation would be to check to make sure you have all the adapter you need. Another recommendation is if you store your password on Dropbox or another secure drive make sure you have your password for that written down. I went to start-up 1password and realized I needed the password for Dropbox so I could import all the passwords. fortunately I had it on my phone. Finally make sure you know where all your licenses are for all your applications. If you have been thinking about buying a Mac and are looking for a desktop I would recommend looking at the Mac Mini. Especially if you are a switcher and already have a monitor, keyboard and mouse.

Samsung 58″ Class (58.0″ Diag.) 500 Series 1080p Plasma HDTV

A few days ago I made a trip to my local Best Buy store and ended up walking out with a Samsung 58” 500 Series Plasma HDTV. I’d gone into the store thinking if I left with anything, it would most likely be an LCD HDTV. However, after spending quite a while comparing picture quality and prices on the massive number of sets covering the big-box store’s back wall, I happened upon the Samsung model PN58C500, a 58” Plasma.

This Samsung Plasma has an absolutely stunning picture, rivaling the best high-end LCD sets that cost two and almost three times more. The PN58C500 sells for $1,197.99. I happened to have a “Best Buy Rewards” coupon for 10% percent off of any HDTV set costing $750 or more, and the coupon did end up applying to the PN58C500. My final price, including our rather high local sales taxes, ended up being $1,147.

There’s no 3D circuitry, but that’s not a problem for me since I consider 3D TV’s (as well as 3D movies) to be a useless gimmick. The PN58C500 has Samsung’s “AllShare DLNA Networking” that allows the set to connect to computers and DLNA servers running on your home network to stream HD video via Ethernet. I’ve also got a Mac Mini, as well as a Western Digital HD Live Plus media player attached directly to the set via my surround sound receiver/switcher.

The PN58C500 has a useful variety of video formatting modes to easily cycle through via the remote control that facilitates getting the right picture format for the particular video you are watching or device you are watching it from. It has 3 HDMI inputs, and is a thin 2.8 inches thick.

The remote control seems to be a bit touchy, needing to be pointed at the set to ensure that remote control commands register. Also, the built-in speakers seem to fire out of the bottom, but the volume levels are more than loud enough to be usable.

If you are looking for a new big-screen HDTV, you can’t go wrong buying this set considering the price versus value. I cannot over-stress the absolutely stunning picture quality this set produces.

GNC-2010-03-02 #556 I Get Called on the Carpet!

Your not going to want to miss a segment in today’s show where I get called on the carpet by a long time listener. I have been in touch with the Advanced tech support at iTunes, I am hoping the show updates on schedule tonight. If it does not there are instructions on how to guarantee how to get the show. I talk about the weekend excitement here in Hawaii over the Tsunami Warning, and a host of other tech topics that are sure to please.

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Social Media and Tsunami Coverage!
Is Firefox Slipping?
Judges and Copyright!
A Win for Fair Use!
Online versus Traditional Print!
Microsoft Botnet Action Evaluation.
Zero day Hole for some Microsoft Users!
25 Million Ticket Scheme.
Weedkiller causing frog Sex Change?
Hadron restarted.
7.6 Million versus $5000.00 Safe you be the Judge!
How China / Google Hack went down!
Texas Newborn Blood Scandal.
Metallica really did not get it!
NBC takes Heat over Olympics.
If you use my idea idea I will sue you?
Final Solid Rocket Booster Test!
Free Health Care in Exchange for Walmart Shopping?
Facebook for Zune HD!
HDMI coming to Mac Mini!
Oxygenated Booze in Korea?
Apps rejected due to limited Functions?
Gold Casket and Cell Phone to Go!
Our Days are now Shorter!
Dream Swimming Pool!
iPhone App Piracy!
Twitter opens up Floodgates!
Wanna get paid just to think?
Search Google Buzz!
Startups the way it is!
Facebook / Google News User Comparison.
More ACTA leaks!
Location Based Advertising Patent Issued!
iPad inventories said to be tight?

The One Thing Apple Did Wrong this Year

First of all, I know there are going to be people disagreeing on this, so let’s just say we’ll agree to disagree….

I have seen a few articles on the web talking about the 10 things that Apple has done right and the 10 things Apple has done wrong. While I look at some of the items on these lists, I agree with it for the most part. You can probably guess some of the things like Apple and AT&T, the Tablet rumors, not upgrading the Mac Pro, etc.

All in all, there is one thing that I think Apple should have done this year and didn’t really do. It’s something that was on Beta News top ten list of things they did right. But I disagree:

Apple did not lower the prices enough.

Back in June the gossip was that Apple was lowering prices on their Macbooks. Everyone was a flutter with a possibly “affordable” machine. But in the end, the reality was that the Intel Dual core laptop started at $999. If you wanted a more affordable Mac – The mini only costs $599.

Now if you compare that to a PC Laptop – 2.66 Dual core with 2 GB DDR3 memory and 250GB hard drive, you will find that price is at about $700. It is said that 30% of the macbook sale is profit. That is about $300 for the Apple name and OS. Apple is expected to have sold about 3 million new machines in this quarter alone, meaning $300 million in sales – or (if numbers stayed the same year round) $1.2 Billion.

Before we move forward – I realize that Apple has to answer to investors. Making profit is key, especially in this economy. However, this last year and a half has not been good to some. Most companies have tried to lower prices so people can buy more and re-stimulate the economy.

Apple didn’t do anything viable for the average consumer.

If they would have done the same thing as with the original Macintosh, then I would be more sympathetic to the cause. Basically, Apple – Back in 1985 – started a program to build, or even rebuild school computer rooms. I was lucky enough to go to a High school that had received 30 Macintosh Classics from this program.

But in this go-around they didn’t. They pretty much profited the money from the sales.

I am all for making a profit in any economy. PC manufacturers would always complain that the problem with building computers was they would only make a couple dollars from selling because the competition was so high. That is why companies made support plans – to make some extra cash on a sale.

My problem lies with the fact that a low end Macbook is not affordable to the average consumer. That is why Microsoft made the PC hunter commercials. A Mac for $1000 whereas a PC Notebook for $500. Yes, it might have a slightly slower processor to it, but will the average consumer actually notice a500 Mhz difference? We could also talk about how AMD processors would match the speed and keep the price low. But let’s not get into THAT argument.

Add to it Apple’s other interests, like iPhone sales, which are great. It costs them $179 to build a 16 GB model. Now while you are saying “That’s OK, I only paid $199 for the phone”, the reality is you didn’t. AT&T picked up the difference for the exclusivity. A $400 difference.

Here is how it works – AT&T pays Apple a monthly fee per phone on their system. So within 2 years, AT&T will pay Apple around $400 for your phone ($12-15 per month). Making Apple about $400 on your $179 iPhone ($600 in total). Of course, if you buy the phone outright, it will cost you $499.

Now we will talk stocks: This last week, Apple shares rose to $209 – the highest they’ve ever been. Why is that? No other reason than the fact that a rumor is going around about a Tablet that might be coming.


I could go on with numbers, but I think I made my point. Apple could have easily dropped a Macbook to $700, and a Macbook Pro to $900. They would have then sold Apple care for $70 a year and still made a tidy profit.

So the rumor of the Tablet is it will sell for $600. I would venture a guess to say it will be more $800 (if this rumor comes true). Why? Because Apple doesn’t want to “Cheapen” the computer experience for anyone. And they certainly don’t want to lighten the pocketbooks.