Newbie Question:  How much computer do I need?

Newbie Question:
I would like to use MainStage 3 in a live performance environment to play bars, parties, etc.  I'm not looping, using it to playback recordings, processing outboard equipment or vocal processing.  I want to stop carrying Rolands, Nords, Korgs, etc and get to a controller and a rack with a Mac Mini in it.
I tested a download of Mainstage 3 on my home Mac Mini (late 2012, 3.5 Ghz i5, 4GB RAM, 500GB drive) and it seemed to run fairly well.  $30 well invested so I trekked forward... I purchased a Mac Mini (late 2009,  2.52GHz Core 2 Duo, 6GB RAM, 128GB SSD) for $200.  I started to do more elaborate keyboard setups to see how the CPU would hold up.  It typically runs from 30% to 50% of capacity (CPU and Memory)  It actually boots and runs better than the i5.  I hear the occasion gitch, but it actually seems to be getting better in time (or I'm rock and roll deaf.
I got a rack, an Airport Express, a Radial USB interface and a Nektar Panorama P6.  It's starting to get expensive, but I'm emboldened by the actual quality for the sound and the flexibility of arranging for live performance.  What used to take me two and three keyboards to play, I can now fit on one performance patch.
OK, now the question... am I at the limits of this little Core 2 Duo?  Should I upgrade the i5 with more RAM and a bigger SSD and use that?  Should I get a new(er) i7 and bite the $1,500 bullet for the additional RAM and SSD?
I see that most of you are running pretty nice Macbook Pros with i7 and lots of everything.  My needs are modest; am I OK? 
BTW, I want to run a Mac Mini in a box because I don't want to carry a laptop out in the open.  If I was doing bigger shows I wouldn't care but I play some rowdy bars and constantly have folks hanging off me while I'm playing.  It's fun, but hard on gear.  If you can't drop it or dip it in beer, it won't last long where I work.
Matt Donnelly

Rule of thumb: newer and faster is better. But, depending the complexity of your needs you may be OK with an older Mac. Some glitches that happen in a live performance are due to loss of communication with USB or Firewire inputs, so make sure they're secure. I recently upgraded from a 2010 Mac Mini 2.6 dual core with 16 GB RAM, which was used live for nearly four years, to the latest Mac Mini 3.0 i7 with 16 GB RAM and a 500 GB SSD. I was getting an occasional stuck note with the older one. The new one is rock solid. Some of my patches may have up to a dozen channel strips mapped to three keyboards. The Mini is mounted in a rack next to a MOTU Ultralite Hybrid. It is a good idea to map a panic button on your keyboard to controller # 123(all notes off). Also, you might want to invest in a battery backup power supply(APC, Cyberpower, etc.-$40-$60) to protect your Mac against power loss, which can damage you hard drive.

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