The introduction of the Mac mini significantly alters the possibile configurations that I can have. Even taking into account recent revelations that it has a 2.5 inch drive, it is still a decent enough machine for my needs. First, where I stand right now:
- 1 GHz TiBook with 1 GB of RAM, 60 GB internal storage and 80 GB internal storage (2.5 inch), and a combo drive. Used as the primary computer, usually in conjunction with an external flat panel, keyboard and mouse.
- Dual 450 MHz G4 with 1.5 GB of RAM, 100 + 120 + 300 GB internal storage and DVD burner. Used as a headless server.
- Toshiba Portege R100 with 768 MB of RAM, and 40 GB internal storage.
All machines have wireless (802.11b cards in the computers, 802.11g on the basestation), and the two Macs have Gigabit Ethernet (and are interconnected with a Gigabit switch).
Wait for more enterprising people to purchase a Mac mini and take it apart. Ensure that RAM and hard drive can be upgraded by the user with minimal hassle (the fact that this may void the warranty does not bother me). Determine if the inevitable flaws in a Rev. A product are acceptable.
Purchase low-end Mac mini with Airport Extreme card and third party 1 GB of RAM for a total of ~$750. Install the 80 GB 2.5 inch drive internally.
Sell the TiBook on eBay for ~$1600 (assuming not too much depreciation in the meantime).
Sell the dual G4 (minus 300 GB of the internal storage) on eBay for ~$400.
Wait and see if I actually need to do anything more. I will in theory have a slightly more performant main machine that takes up less room and requires less external doohickeys.
If the lack of a big honking tower leaves me unsatisfied and unmanly, build an Athlon 64 machine for ~$1500 or a dual Opteron workstation for $2500.