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Good Mac for beginning developer?

08-09-2010, 12:56 PM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 56
Good Mac for beginning developer?

Hey all,

I plan to begin developing apps within the next 6 months or so, and I'm wondering if anyone could suggest an affordable Mac for me to get started with.

I've only ever used Windows and Linux, so the whole Mac system where every computer seems to be part of a line tends to confuse me a little. I can figure out the differences in the newest models on the Apple website, but when I go to eBay, for example, I get a bit confused by all the different models I see, especially since a lot of older models seem to be mixed in there.

Can someone suggest a good affordable system for me that might be good enough to start developing? The first project I have in mind would be a fairly simple native OS (non-gaming) app, but I would also like to be able to possibly move to creating a 2D game after that (no 3D anytime soon).

Just looking for some basic guidelines as to what minimum requirements I should probably be looking for when scouring eBay and the like. Thanks for any suggestions,

08-09-2010, 01:05 PM
Joined: Jan 2009
Location: Switzerland
Posts: 194
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I was in the same situation like you 2 years ago. I got the cheapest Mac mini that was available at that time and it was (more then) enough to start developing for the iPhone. The latest Mac minis are even better. If you don't want to do heavy graphic editing stuff, I'd go with that.

Developer of Practice Pro for musicians.

08-09-2010, 01:52 PM
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 2,255
The new mini is so sexy, that redesign is slick!
08-09-2010, 02:17 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: London, UK
Posts: 230
Yeah but the latest release also brought about a 150 price increase.

It's lovely but I don't think 649 lovely, 499 was such a better price point to get people to buy their first Mac .. then the screen, keyboard, mouse etc ...

I have a 2009 Mac Mini and love it, great bit of kit and so silent

Regarding iPhone developing, even a couple of years old Mac Mini would suffice, as long as you have 1GB+ of memory.
08-09-2010, 02:41 PM
Maybe try get a refurb version? They go as low as $325 and are MORE than enough for basic apps.
08-09-2010, 03:32 PM
Joined: Oct 2008
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 1,652
Mac Mini is the way to go; you probably already have a monitor to use it with; otherwise, you can just buy a cheap one (doesn't have to be Apple).

Originally Posted by Cilo View Post
The new mini is so sexy, that redesign is slick!

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08-09-2010, 04:51 PM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 304
Craigslist - last generation mac mini is fine for development.
08-10-2010, 08:32 AM
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 56
Thanks for all the responses guys. Looks like I'll have to look for a used or refurbished Mac Mini. That was what I was thinking anyway, but it's always good to get the opinion of people with more experience.

Again, thanks for the responses. I haven't wanted anything so badly since I was a kid.