My 2.5 year old 1st generation G4 1.42GHz Mac mini (and the first Mac I ever bought) bit the dust. I’m pretty sure it is either a system board or power supply problem (betting on the power supply being the problem). Although I thought about it at the time of purchase, I decided not to get AppleCare for a desktop Mac mini even though I told myself it is really a notebook without a battery. So, now what to do with it? Everything is backed to to an external hard drive. So, data loss is not a major issue. ifixit.com has how-to guides for everything but the power supply. So, I’m guessing it may be a difficult part to find. If it is just a power supply issue, I’m tempted to try to stick it in a bigger case of some kind and use whatever power supply will work with it (regardless of size). Any leads on that idea?
The next decision is what to replace it with. The new iMacs look great. But, I really really hate the idea of all-in-one computers (with the exception of notebooks of course). The Mac Pro is way too expensive. And, the Mac mini? Well, that first one went bye-bye in under three years and appears difficult for my less than nimble fingers to repair (compared to regular ol’ non-Apple large PCs which are easy to open up and replace components). The various Mac rumor sites have been talking about a sub-notebook sized device being introduced in October. That sounds pretty interesting. But, all I really need is a small iTunes box with a browser and email client (the Mac mini is perfect for that). I just took a look a the 1.83GHz Core 2 Duo Mac mini. But, do I really want another hard to repair box? Actually yes, but… :-)
Well, time to look around the house for a putty knife I guess. Might have a little project for it this weekend.
I took the Mac mini to the local Apple Store Genius Bar where the friendly geniuses there took me in right at my appointment time tested their power brick on the mini and…sigh… it didn’t work with that either. So, it looks like it is the system board after all. They figured the out-of-warranty repair price would be in the $300+ range.
So, now it is time to decide on whether to get another Mac mini (most likely at this point), get a low-end iMac (not likely), or wait a couple of weeks to see if Apple announces a new sub-notebook form factor MacBook (very tempting).