Boris Mann

Open Source. Community. Decentralized Web. Building dev tools at Fission. Cooks & eats.


Not exactly a Mac Mini

This weekend was a very computer-y affair. Gladly, I got to spend most of it with Kate, since it also coincided with cleaning up and rearranging our apartment so the new "stuff" would fit.

I was supposed to end up with a Mac Mini. I had been to stores a week ago or so just as they were coming in, and everyone had lots. Or so I thought. But when I went to make my purchase, the story was the same for all the local Vancouver Mac dealers: 4 - 6 weeks if I put a full deposit down. Wow, these things really are popular.

Stymied for the moment, I went to make my LCD TV purchase. I settled on the BenQ DV2680 – 26" screen, great computer compatability, and very good price from NCIX.

So back to the computer purchase. I was committed to getting things done this weekend, since I promised our current 15" flat-panel iMac to my parents.

I reviewed why I was getting a Mac Mini in the first place. Basically, because it was inexpensive yet full-featured, would fit well into our living room, and didn't include a monitor. The concept of strapping it to the back of the LCD monitor was not so far-fetched.

The eMac and iMacs were out, since they included a screen. That left us with the option of a PowerBook or a PowerMac. Yes, we actually considered a PowerBook -- it's got DVI output and is nice and small after all! But in the end, I came home with a PowerMac.

Yes, a gigantic silver tower, about the size of 4 or more Mac Minis. As a joke, we had actually borrowed a Mini Cooper from CAN to pick up our purchases with (get it? Mac Mini and Mini Cooper together!), but the PowerMac box actually didn't fit in the back seat. So I crawled in the back, and the PowerMac (or "Gigantor", as we're calling it) rode up front.

Back at the apartment, everything came together quite nicely. Gigantor slid underneath the table that the BenQ monitor is on, and is whisper quiet. We can sit on the couch and use a wireless mouse and keyboard, or turn off all the electronics and look out the windows over the mountains.

Next step: getting the Plextor ConvertX or something similar (well, that and a cable subscription!). With the PowerMac, I can actually choose from internal PCI solutions as well, but the ones from AlchemyTV are the only ones for Mac as far as I know, and they don't look that great.