I need to update my Mac Mini

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My 2011 Mac Mini has developed a hardware issue. It appears as though the lower memory slot is either faulty or the board has an issue. I have the computer running at the moment using only the top memory slot, but have decided it is time to update the computer.

My dilemma is whether to stick with the mini or change to an iMac.

This is where I would like some advice. Is using a 5k screen advantageous for photo editing, or is 2560 x 1440 resolution still good enough?
 
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Neither for me. As I was interested in portability and flexibility, in 2018 I went the route of purchasing a MacBook Pro and then later got a 4K Thunderbolt 3 monitor to attach to it when I realized that I really needed a larger screen than the machine's 15" one for editing images.
I also have a MacBook Pro, but only use it when we're away on holidays

read here: https://macperformanceguide.com

buy here: https://www.macsales.com

I am not affiliated with either, but the author know his stuff.
Thank you for the links. I feel any savings made purchasing from Macsales will be eaten up in the exchange rate and freight charges to Australia.
 
IMHO, better to buy new in your own country from Apple with the year's warranty and the option to purchase AppleCare Plus as well, and then you're all set.

Don't forget to factor in that when you buy a brand-new Mini or iMac or MBP that you will also have to make some adjustments with regard to peripherals and ports, since there will be Thunderbolt 3 ports coming into the picture now, too. I think that both the Mini and the iMac still have "legacy" ports, too, so that will make the transition easier. The MBP comes with just Thunderbolt 3 ports. If one is prepared for this, as I was at the time I bought my 2018 MBP, no big deal......and even if one isn't quite prepared (IMHO) it is still not a big deal.
 
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"Better" will be subjective but you'll have a larger resolution to work with to display panels, options, and tools as well as more space to work with inside the editor, but only you can determine if that's of value to you. You can likely still use your monitor from your mini (with the appropriate dongle/connector) if you want.

I don't mind the mini, but I wouldn't use it for anything beyond general web and light use unless you upgrade all the internals, and then at that point you're pretty much in the iMac price range. The iMacs are great machines and if I already had a portable that I don't want to do editing on, the iMac would be sitting on my desk in a second.
 
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Concerning "macsales.com":
I believe that they have branches or affiliates, which may use different names, in many countries (and that probably includes Australia) so check with their USA site. I know them as OWC (Other World Computing).

I do use them and have always received wonderfully helpful advice and excellent parts from them. Everything that has just gone into my rebuilt Mac Pro tower came from them.
 
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I'm going with the basic unit which is sold through re-sellers as they appear to be the only ones which are discounted.

I'll order 32GB of ram via aftermarket supplier, and will use an external SSD drive to boot from until I get around to swapping the internal one out.
 
27" Basic model? If you're looking at the 21.5", be warned that this one is not user-upgradable even with just adding RAM. The 27" one is, as it provides access, but I think the 21.5" is still difficult, if not impossible.

A lot of people have had success with using an external SSD (I highly recommend Samsung's T5) as a boot drive, and that makes a big difference. I'm not sure how easy it is to swap out the internal drive, though, even on the 27" ..... The iMac presents real challenges with that screen, which has to be removed to get into the innards (RAM updating is easier since there is a "drawer" to access RAM so that one doesn't need to disassemble the whole thing in order to swap that out). Anything else, including a drive update/replacement, can be a rather daunting, but I suppose in the end possible process.....
 
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Yes, the 27" model.

There are places locally who will swap the drives out for a sum of money. The conversion cost is not too extravagant so long as I do the software changes. They like to charge quite a bit extra if they need to mirror the drive. I have the software, and although relatively easy to do, it can be time consuming.
 
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I ordered my new toy today. I ended up ordering through Apple and getting it configured with 512GB SSD drive. The memory upgrade is in transit, so hopefully by the end of next week I should have my new computer.
 
Excellent choice! That 512 GB SSD should serve you well, especially if you supplement it with offloading files to an external SSD, which has been something that has worked well for me over the past several years. Dropping files that aren't used that often or at all after the initial creation of them right into an external drive and getting them off the main drive can be very useful and saves space on the main internal SSD. I highly recommend Samsung's T5 series but there are other options available as well.
 
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The new computer turned up yesterday.

It took around 3 hours to install a backup from the Mac Mini Time machine, plus do Apple updates, including a couple of restarts.

The desktop now looks identical to the Mac Mini, just need to check if all the software installed is still registered. I found this on previous upgrades, some software retain their registration, while other require it to be activated again. I also installed the additional RAM I'd previously purchased so now have 40GB of RAM installed.

Then just need to take a few photos to put the new machine through its paces. :)
 
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Thank you at @Clix Pix! I should add at least 1/2 an hour of the 3 hour setup was unpacking the computer. They do pack them well!

Only a couple of the software packages I use regularly were still registered. I note one of them became unregistered on my old computer when I changed the hardware configuration of that computer. Where I did come unstuck was with Adobe. It would not let me login via the software. I logged into the web portal to download the software again, and it appears we're only allowed to use the software concurrently on two computers, previously I thought it was three. I use it on a MacBook Pro as well. It gave me the option online to deregister my old computer, after that it worked a treat on the new computer.
 
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Adobe allows for 2 concurrent uses, though I was under the impression it could be installed on more just not used.
 
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